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Thread: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

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    How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    Wondering how much I can expect a solar cover to decrease chlorine loss vs. without one. Currently losing about 3-4ppm chlorine on a 4500 gallon spa, and was wondering when I go on vacation if a solar cover would decrease the loss a lot or not much at all.
    15k gunite pool. Intelliflo VF. Autopilot SWG.
    2k separate spa with waterfall (ie: pain in the rear maintaining a separate body of water). 2HP Hayward Tristar pump.

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    That's hard to say without knowing a lot more. Post a full set of test results and your equipment specs and how long you run your pump and at what times, what color and the thickness of yoru solar cover. It's possible that it may cut it in half but a lot depends on the rest of the equation.
    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
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    Have you got a winter cover, if so use that, solar by definition allows the suns rays to warm the water therefore allowing UV through and that is wher a proportion of your chlorine goes. Exclude the UV and that loss is plugged then it's just your sanitation usage.

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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    Quote Originally Posted by teapot
    Have you got a winter cover, if so use that, solar by definition allows the suns rays to warm the water therefore allowing UV through and that is wher a proportion of your chlorine goes. Exclude the UV and that loss is plugged then it's just your sanitation usage.
    Most windows will block uv, but allow the thermal energy through.
    20X40 30,000 gallon gunite pool

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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    Well there you have Beezar, I sugest using a winter cover if you have one and racket suggests you put a window on it

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    A solar cover will block ~most of the UV, and should decrease your chlorine use as long as you don't have algae or other organics using up chlorine. 3-4 ppm loss per day sounds about right, so you're probably OK.

    How long will your vacation be? It may just be easier to raise the chlorine higher than normal, high enough that there will still be enough residual when you get back.
    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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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    I had a black/blue solar cover and when it was on the FC loss was practically nil.
    too funny Teapot
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    FPM, how would you compare that black/blue cover to a standard blue one? Sounds like it did a better job at managing FC loss. How did it compare with heat management, durability, etc...
    19,600 gal, Vinyl, Grecian L, StaRite Dura-Glas 1 HP pump, 3/4hp booster, Pentair Clean and Clear 420 Cartridge filter
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    Here is my experience. During a phase when I was collecting data on my pool daily I checked my FC consumption with cover on.

    When using the cover the FC consumption doubled or tripled! The best explanation I could find was that there was more biofilm created on the increased surface area of the cover. This was in a NON-saltwater pool before I converted to SWG by the way.
    IG 24k plaster with overflow spa. Goldline PS-8 SWG. Tristar 0.75 HP filter pump, Polaris 280, large cartridge filter, 400k BTU NG Max-E-Therm HD, SR Smith Turbo Twister, Life Saver pool fence, ORP managed.

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    I betcha there was mildew or something similar that was growing on the cover when it was rolled up...
    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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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    Quote Originally Posted by Puffin
    FPM, how would you compare that black/blue cover to a standard blue one? Sounds like it did a better job at managing FC loss. How did it compare with heat management, durability, etc...
    I've had three types - the "space age" expensive silver/blue one that was 16ml and did a great job at temp holding. I never compared fc loss back then so I can't comment on that... that was pre-TFP days.

    Then I had a cheapy/sucky 6 ml blue one (the basic variety) and it was adequate and you get what you pay for for 2 seasons lol

    The black one lasted two seasons but it was worth the slightly higher price because the FC loss was nil when it was on, compare to a daily loss of 1fc with the basic, when it was on.

    If there was 3-5 days of no swimming for whatever reason, and the cover was on, I wouldn't need to add chlorine at all. That was a good deal to me.

    As for problems with using a cover - I've used a cover as long as I've had the pool. Never had any issues related to algae forming, etc, as long as I've maintained the proper FC it just wasn't an issue. The PH would drift down slightly however.

    I have gone on 11 day vacations, shocked and covered and come home to a FC above my min, with no chlorine additions. Maybe I've been lucky, IDK, but I've read alot of problems from people who blame their cover - I just haven't experienced that.
    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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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    The black one lasted two seasons but it was worth the slightly higher price because the FC loss was nil when it was on, compare to a daily loss of 1fc with the basic, when it was on.

    If there was 3-5 days of no swimming for whatever reason, and the cover was on, I wouldn't need to add chlorine at all. That was a good deal to me.

    As for problems with using a cover - I've used a cover as long as I've had the pool. Never had any issues related to algae forming, etc, as long as I've maintained the proper FC it just wasn't an issue. The PH would drift down slightly however.

    I have gone on 11 day vacations, shocked and covered and come home to a FC above my min, with no chlorine additions. Maybe I've been lucky, IDK, but I've read alot of problems from people who blame their cover - I just haven't experienced that.

    That sounds very good. Where did you get your black cover? And how many mil was it?

    I'm going to have a 2 week vacation in May, so I'm brainstorming now on ideas to keep it from getting an algae bloom while away (other than getting someone else to maintain it while I'm gone).

    Bama, here are my numbers:
    FC from 4-10, CYA 40, pH 7.6, CH 290, TA 60. Hayward Tristar 2HP pump running 3 hours per day running from 3pm to 6pm. Don't have a solar cover yet...
    15k gunite pool. Intelliflo VF. Autopilot SWG.
    2k separate spa with waterfall (ie: pain in the rear maintaining a separate body of water). 2HP Hayward Tristar pump.

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    How are you testing? 4-10 FC is a very wide range.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    Remember that a UV-opaque solar cover left on for long periods of time effectively makes the pool into an indoor pool, which means potential problems with CC and other related issues.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: How much can a solar cover slow chlorine loss?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    How are you testing? 4-10 FC is a very wide range.
    I put FC 4-10 because it depends upon how much chlorine I add and what day I'm testing. I try to add chlorine only every 3 or so days, so I usually overshoot a bit and let it drift down. I'm using the FAS-DPD test.
    15k gunite pool. Intelliflo VF. Autopilot SWG.
    2k separate spa with waterfall (ie: pain in the rear maintaining a separate body of water). 2HP Hayward Tristar pump.

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