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Thread: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

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    rugadog's Avatar
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    Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    I took a water sample to Leslie's to have them analyze the CYA level just to make sure the reading of 80-100 I keep getting was correct. The teenager working the other afternoon confirmed it was about 90. Then the sales pitch started, he said everything else in the water looked OK except the ph, which he said was high, about 8.0. This is the same level I measured. After having the water checked at Leslie's I was planning on going to Home Depot and picking up some acid to drop the ph and picking up pvc parts to to build an aerator (thanks to Ashbourne).

    I told the kid I already had the acid and what my plan was. He said, "Liquid acid in a vinyl pool? Are you sure you want to do that??". I asked why and he said liquid acid isn't good for vinyl pools.

    So, is the kid right???
    NEW POOL: Completed, 11/23/11
    44,000 gallons
    Filter: Pentair -model# CCP520, Cartridge, 150 GPM (17-8585)
    In ground ~ Pebble Sheen
    Pentair IntelliChlor IC40 ~ SWG
    Main and Small waterfall pump: IntelliFlo ~ 3HP,
    Big Waterfall pump: WhisperFlo ~ 1-1/2HP
    Polaris 280 F5 with Century Centurion 3/4HP booster pump

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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    So, is the kid right???
    Well, he's batting .500 (which is not bad for a young, lead-off hitter and really excellent for Leslie's )

    He apparently did a good job on the CYA test but he struck out on the acid question. Hundreds, if not thousands of people on this forum use acid everyday to lower the pH in their pools.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    rugadog's Avatar
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Hey thanks for the fast reply!

    Just to confirm, liquid acid is OK in a vinyl pool?
    NEW POOL: Completed, 11/23/11
    44,000 gallons
    Filter: Pentair -model# CCP520, Cartridge, 150 GPM (17-8585)
    In ground ~ Pebble Sheen
    Pentair IntelliChlor IC40 ~ SWG
    Main and Small waterfall pump: IntelliFlo ~ 3HP,
    Big Waterfall pump: WhisperFlo ~ 1-1/2HP
    Polaris 280 F5 with Century Centurion 3/4HP booster pump

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    It's not only ok, it's prefered.

    So to directly answer your question! Yes it's OK to use liquid acid in a vinyl lined pool.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Would I be correct in saying that liquid acid is preferred as it will disperse quicker whereas dry acid powder could clump and sink to the bottom?
    15ft round above ground pool (6600 gallons)
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    Intermatic timer

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    rugadog's Avatar
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Awesome! Thanks guys!
    NEW POOL: Completed, 11/23/11
    44,000 gallons
    Filter: Pentair -model# CCP520, Cartridge, 150 GPM (17-8585)
    In ground ~ Pebble Sheen
    Pentair IntelliChlor IC40 ~ SWG
    Main and Small waterfall pump: IntelliFlo ~ 3HP,
    Big Waterfall pump: WhisperFlo ~ 1-1/2HP
    Polaris 280 F5 with Century Centurion 3/4HP booster pump

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    Mod Squad woodyp's Avatar
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    You DO know to pour it in SLOWLY in front of a return, right? Most folks don't add over a quart at a particular time, and leave the pump running for 3 or 4 hours after you add.
    16x32x52" Steel Cornelius Miramar AGP Vinyl liner 13,100 gal. Buried 2 ft.
    2 Speed Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 85 g.p.m. 22" 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    on my bottle of acid it said to always dilute the acid first. i dont know if this holds true for pool use but i always pre dilute it in a bucket of water. (wearing safety goggles).... i havnt had any problems.
    24' X 52" round above ground pool---13,500 gallons---Hayward power flow matrix 1.5 hp pump---Hayward 21 in. variflow XL sandfilter---Louisville, Ky

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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    I always dilute first even in my plaster pool. Acid into water always; not the other way around. I saw a video last year where someone put dye in MA in poured it into a pool. It sank almost immediately and then ran down towards the drain. Made an impression on me. So I dilute and then pour in front of returns. I use a 2-4 gallon plastic bucket filled with water about 2/3 and then pour part of the measured acid in water. Redo as needed to get proper amount into pool. Also make sure the handle on the bucket is intact and not aged from sun. I like the buckets have plastic handles so no problem if I splash acid on them.

    In spa I turn jets on. They say not to turn bubbler on because of splashes but I turn it on too and have eye protection on. BTW..... I've used MA for most of my adult life for all sorts of projects. Even acid washed my pool several times. I've never gotten any eye splashes because of eye protection. I was at a friends house the other day. Her pool needed a little acid. I was in a great hurry to leave so poured small amount standing on top of 4' sheer decent. No eye protection. I got my first eye splash but it was mostly water. So wear that eye protection.

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Another reason Muratic Acid is preferred over dry is the dry adds sulphates to the water.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
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    rugadog's Avatar
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Thank you everybody for all the good advice!!
    NEW POOL: Completed, 11/23/11
    44,000 gallons
    Filter: Pentair -model# CCP520, Cartridge, 150 GPM (17-8585)
    In ground ~ Pebble Sheen
    Pentair IntelliChlor IC40 ~ SWG
    Main and Small waterfall pump: IntelliFlo ~ 3HP,
    Big Waterfall pump: WhisperFlo ~ 1-1/2HP
    Polaris 280 F5 with Century Centurion 3/4HP booster pump

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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Quick question on this topic.

    Will liquid acid bring down my TA? I want to drop the PH a bit (maybe .2 or so) but keep the TA where it is since my pools been extremely consistant with the TA at 70.

    Thanks.
    18x38 Inground Liner (25k gal) Paver surround, multi-speed pump, DE Filter, Raised spill over spa, TF-100

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Addition of any kind of acid will lower your TA. Typically though, it takes a bunch of acid to make TA move significantly. See the "effects of adding chemicals" section at the bottom of the Pool Calculator.

    I wouldn't worry about it; if TA gets low enough that it causes issues, you can very easily bump it up with baking soda.
    11,200 gal, Pebble-Tec; Tristar 2-speed 1hp - Swimclear 325 ft2 cart - SWG - A & A in-floor cleaner - Heat pump. For the poolside cooking, a Yoder Wichita and a Big Steel Keg!
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by mitch08
    ...Will liquid acid bring down my TA?...
    Yes. So will any acid. You can use the "effects of adding chemicals" section of the pool calculator to see the specifics.
    Why are you worried about TA changing? It isn't a big deal and is easy enough to bring back up. Many of us who use liquid chlorine or SWCG like to keep TA low to offset pH rise anyway. Are you worried about CSI?
    TFP Method Advanced Intermediate
    • 17,500 gallons - In Ground - Plaster - Hayward Swimclear 3020 Cartridge Filter - Sta-Rite Max-E-Glas Main Pump upgraded with A.O. Smith B2980 E-Plus New Centurion Two-Speed Motor - Polaris 280 Cleaner with Polaris PB4-60 Booster Pump - TightWatt2 Timer - Taylor K-2006 Test Kit - Pool Pilot Digital Nano SWCG

    Helpful Links: Pool School, BBB for Beginners, How to Shock (hint...it's a process not a product), Chlorine/CYA Chart, Jason's Pool Calculator

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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Thanks. The thing is, it becomes a never ending cycle.

    Sure the TA is easy to bring back up. But then the PH goes back up with it.
    So Ill add acid which brings my PH down but then I need to bring the TA back up...



    My TA is 70 and my PH is 7.8.

    Everything is fine I guess, but I would really like to bring my PH to 7.5.
    But when my TA goes below 70 my PH gets more volatile.
    18x38 Inground Liner (25k gal) Paver surround, multi-speed pump, DE Filter, Raised spill over spa, TF-100

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Yes, it always is a never ending cycle, but if you bump your TA up to about 90, you'll have quite a bit of time before it drifts back down.
    11,200 gal, Pebble-Tec; Tristar 2-speed 1hp - Swimclear 325 ft2 cart - SWG - A & A in-floor cleaner - Heat pump. For the poolside cooking, a Yoder Wichita and a Big Steel Keg!
    TF Test Kits -- PoolMath -- Pool School
    Make each day your masterpiece. - John Wooden

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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Have you tried leaving it at 7.8 and seeing what happens?

    Up until recently I would immediately bring my pH down to 7.5 every time it got up to 7.8. I have heard that pH likes to sit at around 7.8 with borates so I am doing an experiment now to determine how long it takes to get up to 8.0.

    The impression I get from the experts here is that a little bit of "hands off" philosophy can save frustration as far as pH is concerned (within reason of course) as opposed to constantly fighting it. I have (had?) a tendency to see a recommended range and decide I must be right in the middle. As I get more experience I realize that the edges (or even outside) those ranges can be OK as long as you have a reason and understand the effects. (Zen and the art of pool maintenance)
    TFP Method Advanced Intermediate
    • 17,500 gallons - In Ground - Plaster - Hayward Swimclear 3020 Cartridge Filter - Sta-Rite Max-E-Glas Main Pump upgraded with A.O. Smith B2980 E-Plus New Centurion Two-Speed Motor - Polaris 280 Cleaner with Polaris PB4-60 Booster Pump - TightWatt2 Timer - Taylor K-2006 Test Kit - Pool Pilot Digital Nano SWCG

    Helpful Links: Pool School, BBB for Beginners, How to Shock (hint...it's a process not a product), Chlorine/CYA Chart, Jason's Pool Calculator

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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by svenpup
    Zen and the art of pool maintenance
    Exactly!
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    Its actually been 7.8 for about 3 weeks. But a few people complained their eyes were hurting a bit lately so I figured I would try dropping it to 7.5. I like the idea of bringing the TA to 90 but then Im afraid Ill be adding acid all the time. Right now its extremely stable although just a bit high.

    Sorry... Didnt mean to hijack the thread but it was on topic
    18x38 Inground Liner (25k gal) Paver surround, multi-speed pump, DE Filter, Raised spill over spa, TF-100

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    svenpup's Avatar
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    Re: Is it OK to use liquid acid in an inground, vinyl pool?

    I doubt a pH of 7.8 is causing eye irritation. Check out this recent thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    ...The pH varying from 7 to 9 did not show a significant difference in [eye] irritation...
    TFP Method Advanced Intermediate
    • 17,500 gallons - In Ground - Plaster - Hayward Swimclear 3020 Cartridge Filter - Sta-Rite Max-E-Glas Main Pump upgraded with A.O. Smith B2980 E-Plus New Centurion Two-Speed Motor - Polaris 280 Cleaner with Polaris PB4-60 Booster Pump - TightWatt2 Timer - Taylor K-2006 Test Kit - Pool Pilot Digital Nano SWCG

    Helpful Links: Pool School, BBB for Beginners, How to Shock (hint...it's a process not a product), Chlorine/CYA Chart, Jason's Pool Calculator

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