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Thread: Newbie swim spa owners needs help with proper chemicals

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    Newbie swim spa owners needs help with proper chemicals

    We have recently purchased a Premium Leisure 14' swim spa (1600 gallon) and need help with the proper chemicals and the best way to test for the correct amounts of each. We currently use only chlorine, clarifier, and ph decreaser (as it seems the ph level is usually high on the 2 step tester we use). It seems that we are constantly adding chemicals, which is getting rather expensive, so we need the basics of how to best and most cost effectively maintain clear, clean, water.

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    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Denton, TX
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    Re: Newbie swim spa owners needs help with proper chemicals

    Welcome to TFP!

    Spas require water balance and sanitation quite similar to pools. The best place to start would be to familiarize yourself with some basic pool chemistry by reading Pool School (link on the top right of every page). The chemicals that you will use in spas are the same as you would use in pools.

    Accurate testing is the key to success in the management of your pool or spa. Unless you can trust the numbers, you really are just guessing. Please read Test Kit Comparison to learn about the various high quality kits out there.

    Here is a thread within the forum that discusses specifically using chlorine in a spa. It might be helpful to you.

    Good luck!

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    Join Date
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    San Rafael, CA USA
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    Re: Newbie swim spa owners needs help with proper chemicals

    See Using Chlorine in a Spa. Note that you need to get the Total Alkalinity (TA) way down to around 50 ppm when using hypochlorite sources of chlorine; otherwise the pH will tend to rise too quickly. You should also consider using 50 ppm Borates in the spa (using Boric Acid, either purchased directly or from ProTeam Gentle Spa).
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

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    benavidescj's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie swim spa owners needs help with proper chemicals

    Hi loublou, I too struggled with my spa for a couple of years until I got the hang of it. I also found this site and it helped me out. I will tell you how I do it.

    1. Have to have a test kit for this to work. I use the K-2006, which is for chlorine, even though I use bromine because I also have a pool that uses chlorine and you can use it for both as you will see
    2. When I add water from the tap to fill up the spa the first thing I do is add about two cap fulls of sodium bromine. This is to create what is called the bromine bank. Without getting too complicated, this bank is what will be used to make the sanitizer, similar to chlorine in your case.
    3. After the sodium bromine has disolved in the water I shock the spa with some Chlorox bleach. What this does is it converts that sodium bromine into a sanitizer.
    4. Ok, now I have new water and sanitizer. Now it is time to see where the chemicals are at.
    5. Test using the K-2006 for TA, FC and CH. I use a meter to test my pH just because I don't like the color comparison thing. Also the number I get for the FC test I multiply in my head by 2.25 which is the bromine level. Since the K-2006 is a chlorine test kit you can get your bromine level by this calculation. In your case since you are using chlorine as your sanitizer you don't have to do this.
    6. Now I just adjust the chemicals as needed. I keep my TA down around 50ppm because if not the pH will go through the roof. At around 50ppm the pH just hangs out around 7.5 (perfect). The CH I keep around 250 and you don't have to check that again.
    7. I have a floater tied to a string that holds about 5 bromine tablets. This floater keeps the Bromine level stable when not in use.
    8. After a bunch of kids get out of the spa I shock it using Chlorox because the bromine level will quickly drop due to the bather load.
    9. I refill about every three months.

    Hope this helps
    9. Every day or two I check the pH and FC level (times 2.25 for bromine) to make sure it is where I want it to be and adjust as necessary. I check the TA about once a week although I will know if it is getting low because the pH will begin to drop when I check for it.
    Carlos
    Pool: 28,000 gallons IG; IC 40 SWG; Pentair 120 gpm cartridge filter; Marble finish; Pentair Wisperflow 1.5 hp; Polaris 360
    Spa: 350 gallon; Bromine
    How to shock your pool

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    Re: Newbie swim spa owners needs help with proper chemicals

    Good write-up Carlos.

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