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Thread: Large Scale BBB Method

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    Large Scale BBB Method

    Friends -

    I am wondering if anyone has had the opportunity to incorporate the BBB Method on a large scale? I am talking about pools the size of 470,000, 270,000, and three (3) 178,000 gallon pools. I know that the system works and works great for my 30,000 gallon pool. I just want to know how this works on a large scale, with 50,000 swimmers per season.

    If anyone has experience, I would love to pick your brain, as I am sure I would be dealing with a different set of problems, such as I don't worry about my pH levels on my pool but am assuming I would with pools of this size and usage.

    I am trying to get some idea of what cost savings might be available to a large Midwest municipality by incorporating the BBB method. I know I saved hundreds this year and had a great looking pool to boot, thanks to BBB.

    Thanks -

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    The problem with large public pools is not only one of scale but also one of regulations. Also, the bather load has to be taken into account as in our little backyard pool the bather load is very low and the major issue we have is sunlight eating our chlorine.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    Actually the regulations for public pools are not as extensive as I would have assumed. It is basically keeping with TFP standards for pH, CYA, and FC. It really only calls for an automatic feeder for the sanitizer and prohibits liquid chlorine gas as a sanitizer.

    I hope to have chemical costs for the summer in the next few weeks to try to get an idea of how much they are spending. The city had private donors funding the pools this year, otherwise no public pools would have been open on one of the hottest summers in the past few years.

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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    This gets posted probably fifty times each summer (no offense). If you test accurately, understand what you are testing and what to do with the results, you are practicing BBB.

    It is not about using only certain chemistry but rather about knowledge and accuracy in testing and dosing.
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    The main difference with higher bather load pools is that you usually need some supplemental oxidation in order to handle that bather load quickly enough. Chlorine is too slow to oxidize the urea and other components of sweat and urine when the rate of introduction is high so without supplemental oxidation you will likely end up with high Combined Chlorine (CC) levels as well as higher levels of disinfection by-products (including "pool smell"). Supplemental oxidation includes UV (technically not oxidation, but it does decimate relevant molecules), ozone, non-chlorine shock (MPS) and enzymes. A saltwater chlorine generator might be considered to give some supplemental oxidation, but probably not enough by itself when the bather load is high.

    It is the lack of supplemental oxidation that gives most commercial/public pools a bad rap with the resulting pool smell and irritation associated with volatile disinfection by-products. Of course, improper maintenance using too little chlorine or too much CYA, etc. are also factors, but even in properly maintained pools, if the bather load is consistently high and you don't use supplemental oxidation you are asking for trouble. Indoor pools are particularly troublesome since you don't get any help from the UV in sunlight.
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    Sorry: I'm late.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    The problem with large public pools is not only one of scale but also one of regulations. Also, the bather load has to be taken into account as in our little backyard pool the bather load is very low and the major issue we have is sunlight eating our chlorine.
    Just wondering if you CAN use a product not labelled for use in a swimming pool. Regulations aside, if trouble was to happen once, and it was found out you were using bleach, it could still be worsened by some reporters.
    Pool: None, and All.
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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    It all depends on the regulations in your area. Some specifically state that you can only use products labeled for pool use or something to that effect and some dont stipulate that.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    So... if they didn't take the time to write a law about it, it's okay?

    Forgive me, being paranoid I know... but few people are aware. That said, people see Bleach not as innefficient or dangerous but outdated so what do I know? Might work fine. I'd doublecheck for any written law though.
    Pool: None, and All.
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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    That's a leading question and the answer is, it depends. Some things are wrong whether they write a law about it or not.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    Quote Originally Posted by Darkside of the Pool
    Just wondering if you CAN use a product not labelled for use in a swimming pool. Regulations aside, if trouble was to happen once, and it was found out you were using bleach, it could still be worsened by some reporters.
    Clorox Regular (Ultra in Canada) IS registered with the EPA as a chlorine product suitable for use in swimming pools. It has EPA registration number 5813-50 and is a disinfectant registered for use in swimming pools and spas. It has passed EPA DIS/TSS-12 and you will see on the bottle where it lists "% Available Chlorine" as required for use in pools.

    Now from a practical point of view, for a large pool using bleach at 6% is twice as much weight to carry for the same amount of chlorine compared to 12.5% chlorinating liquid. When it comes down to it, that's why bleach isn't normally used in larger pools, but if one is in a pinch and needs to get something right away, one can certainly use bleach.
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    Clorox Regular (Ultra in Canada) IS registered with the EPA as a chlorine product suitable for use in swimming pools.
    Then, if one really wants to save, take an EPA-approved bleach?
    Have nothing against the idea and was utterly ignorant of its status EPA-wise, so I must apologize since in ''Old Pool Stores' way'' I mislead through ignorance.

    I... I fear advancing any theory upon Arms&Hammer baking soda (or Borax for that matter)... since it's not a sanitizer they shouldn't NEED an approval? Here (Quebec, Canada) law dictates you cannot sell a product to an other end than the one prescribed for it (rules out 20 Mules and Arm&Hammer), and since EPA have (I believe) little influence here in Canada, could Clorox still be used?
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    Quote Originally Posted by Darkside of the Pool
    (rules ....and Arm&Hammer),
    So what do you use for alkalinity up? Baking soda and alk up are the same thing, sodium bicarb. Says it right on the box.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    First, while liquefied chlorine gas is not permitted, 12% liquid is permitted. Lets not confuse the two. Compressed chlorine gas is still permitted but requires permitting and trained handlers.

    Liquefied chlorine gas, if a leak happened, would be very hard to stop. Once the liquid changes states to a gas, it will expand an enormous amount. It also sit low to the ground. It is very corrosive. Two tanks of equal size, one has compressed and the other has liquefied. Which do you suppose will make a bigger cloud?

    Different states/cities/towns have different health code requirements.

    Bleach is allowed. As was said before, it just isn't economical.

    Arm And Hammer sells bulk bags of baking soda and dense ash. Commercial pools with salt cells often have acid tanks and automatic feeders, ORP and pH sensors. The newer systems will even set up a backwash cycle automatically. Large commercial systems are a totally different world from residential systems.

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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    Ultra Javex® Professional bleach by Clorox is registered as a disinfectant with Health Canada and is 6% bleach, but has high pH at 12.5-13 so would tend to make the pH rise more quickly. Clorox Commercial Solutions™ Javex® 12 Bleach by Clorox (on the same page, further down) is 10.8% by weight (so is around 12% Trade, or by volume) says that it "controls bacteria and algae in swimming pools". Though the 6% bleach might not be economical, the 12% in bulk might be -- check out pricing compared to other sources of chlorinating liquid.

    [EDIT]
    As stated on the Clorox site linked to above:
    For Clorox Commercial Solutions™ Javex® 12 Bleach by Clorox Bulk Orders
    You can get Clorox Commercial Solutions™ Javex® 12 Bleach by Clorox products in bulk across Canada, in a variety of container sizes to meet your specific needs. Contact one of our distribution partners to learn more, and they can provide a quotation.
    so they may sell large drums of 12% chlorine for larger commercial pool use as 4JawChuck indicated in his post below.
    [END-EDIT]
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    EPA does not apply in Canada, we have our own agencies. I think labeling requirements go beyond indicating available chlorine content, there are additional wording required if the product will be used specifically for swimming pools.

    Also keep in mind that this forum targets residential pool users, the original poster's question is "out of scope" because it involves public installations.

    On the residential side you can use whatever product you want in your pool, properly labeled or not, properly stored or not, nobody cares. On the public side however there are huge liability/public health issues when dealing with chemicals, therefore proper labeling, handling, training and storage are all absolutely required.

    The costs involved in maintaining a public installation also include microbiological testing, salaries, training, equipment etc; the majority of the costs may not even be with the chemicals.

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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    Quote Originally Posted by Darkside of the Pool
    I'd doublecheck for any written law though.
    C'est la loi sur les produits antiparasitaires:
    http://www.mddep.gouv.qc.ca/pesticides/cadrelegal.htm

    "D’autre part, il est interdit d’utiliser un produit antiparasitaire de manière non conforme aux indications contenues sur l’étiquette. Un emploi autre que celui qui y est prescrit constitue une infraction Ă* cette loi et peut entraĂ®ner un risque pour la santĂ© humaine, pour l’environnement ou pour l’un et l’autre."

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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    I wrote that the Clorox Javel 12% product was also registered with Health Canada as Clorox noted on their website. The registration is listed here as a "LAUNDRY ADDITIVE,SWIMMING POOL ALGICIDE,SWIMMING POOL BACTERICIDE". The link for the registration is a PDF file that states the following:

    Javel-12
    Sodium hypochlorite
    FOR INDUSTRIAL, INSTITUTIONAL AND SWIMMING POOL USE
    READ THE LABEL BEFORE USING
    GUARANTEE: Available chlorine present as sodium hypochlorite 10.3%
    REGISTRATION NO. 24655 PEST CONTROL PRODUCTS ACT.

    There is also a similar registration with number 25152. The 24655 is registered with Groulx-Robertson Ltd. while the 25152 is registered with Javel-12 St-Césaire Inc., both in Quebec. There is also a registration shown here with number 29183 for "Clorox Commercial Solutions Javex® 12 Bleach by Clorox" where this is distributed by The Clorox Company of Canada, Ltd. in Ontario.
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    Re: Large Scale BBB Method

    For large scale commercial use you can purchase drums of sodium hypochlorite, this is how we sanitized drinking water for a hydro facility that drew its drinking water from the dam aquifer...nothing fancy just a simple poppet checked needle valve injector feeding a venturi so it only injected when water was demanded.

    There was talk of going to on-site generation using brine solutions since the power to generate was essentially free but the start up costs were high compared to a simple injector (not to mention more complicated and requiring special training to operate) so I never heard anything more about it. Here is a document from Siemens that talks about the cost differentials between the two methods.

    http://www.water.siemens.com/SiteCol...n%20Canada.pdf

    Each Province has their own standards regarding commercial pools, how you sanitize, how often and what you test for is regulated by each Province. Most of the commercial installations I have seen here in Manitoba use a combination of ozone (ozone generated on-site), liquid chlorine (sodium hypochlorite drums) and UV treatment with ORP and PH sensing to regulate the system.

    Pretty standard stuff.
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