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Thread: Scum Lines and the Scum Ball

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    71

    Scum Lines and the Scum Ball

    I have a chlorine spa, stabilized with 50-70ppm CYA and usually running around 3-6ppm Chlorine (bleach) with 50ppm Borates (in case I let it go, which I do sometimes -- no alge yet). I'd go bromine, but it kept poofing when we left the cover off. I keep the spa around 90-93 when not in use to discourage the bugs. I occasionally treat the spa with a chemical that is supposed to cause the bugs to sink. I noticed a significant scum line develop around the water line. What causes the scum line? I read a few suggestions about getting a scum ball. Where can I get one and which is the best to buy? Also, what is the best way to clean the scum line off without damaging the acrylic?
    Location: Atlanta, Georgia.
    Pool: 15,000 gallon 32'x18', 3'-6' deep in-ground gunite pool, Sta-Rite 3 125 GPM 2-filter cartrige, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite pump, solar heater, Goldline SWG, Jandy controls, opaque automatic CoverStar solar pool cover, 3 waterfalls (not from spa).
    Spa: 485 gallon in-ground square acrylic over fiberglass suspended over gunite Sunset brand spa, isolated system, natural gas heater, 2-speed (4hp/11hp) main pump, 3hp booster pump, chlorine sanitized.

    To my pool store owner, nothing is more important than my pool and my money.

    Richard's PoolEquations Spreadsheet

  2. Back To Top    #2

    In the Industry

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Knippa, Texas
    Posts
    289
    Sorry I didn't chime in sooner; I just noticed your post! Hope this reply isn't too late to be any help.

    What did you mean by "poofing"? Don't know what you're talking about there, unless you mean it "poofs" out of existence.

    The scum line (or waterline ring) is caused by accumulated organics. That's stuff like sweat, body oils, etc. A scumbug or scumball is a special sponge that helps soak up the stuff that causes the scum. I have a "Zorbo" which I bought from Spa Depot. Same principle as the sponge types; Spa Depot also has scumbugs and scumballs. www.spadepot.com

    An enzyme treatment is really helpful in preventing waterline ring. It may be an extravagant luxury for most pools, but it's almost a necessity for a hot tub. The enzymes aid the sanitizer in clearing out the scum (enzymes "digest" the organics). There are a number of brands; Spa Perfect by Natural Chemistry is one. I like Scumbuster which I get from Spa Depot (no, I don't work for them or get a kickback!!). Scumbuster is MUCH cheaper than Spa Perfect and works great. There are other brands too.

    In case you're tempted to use Pool Perfect or some other brand of pool enzyme treatment in your spa, I've been told that the spa products are especially formulated to handle a higher level of organic contaminants.

    As far as cleaning your existing scum line. . . there are some products that can be safely used, and yes, there is one that can be found at Spa Depot! Theirs is called Clean-All. However, I have not tried this product, I just know of its existence and the claim that it won't adversely affect your spa's pH or whatever.

    I think baking soda works too.

    There are other products and sources out there, but these are the ones I know about. I've found the Zorbo and Scumbuster to be very helpful and have never had a waterline ring in my spa.
    ~Jules~

    My pool: INDOOR 13x27 rectangular fiberglass, built ~2001, BBB, TA-60 sand filter, Hayward two speed pump (1 hp/0.33 hp), 3/4 hp booster pump for solar heater
    Taylor K-2006 test

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    71
    Thanks for the advise. I'll check it out. I think I still have some Spa Perfect left. Now I know what it is for. I bought a scumball, and the water line re-appeared again. Scumball is clean. I haven't been in the spa in a while -- no one has. Just too hot still. I'm a bit overdue for cleaning the filter and changing the water though.
    Location: Atlanta, Georgia.
    Pool: 15,000 gallon 32'x18', 3'-6' deep in-ground gunite pool, Sta-Rite 3 125 GPM 2-filter cartrige, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite pump, solar heater, Goldline SWG, Jandy controls, opaque automatic CoverStar solar pool cover, 3 waterfalls (not from spa).
    Spa: 485 gallon in-ground square acrylic over fiberglass suspended over gunite Sunset brand spa, isolated system, natural gas heater, 2-speed (4hp/11hp) main pump, 3hp booster pump, chlorine sanitized.

    To my pool store owner, nothing is more important than my pool and my money.

    Richard's PoolEquations Spreadsheet

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    71

    Re: Scum Lines and the Scum Ball

    You know, oddly enough, I think the ring is not a scum line. I think it is rubber residue from the rubber ring in the main pump motor. I think the ring has failed, which explains the leaking of the motor. And the ring material will not stick to the scum ball, and it's really hard to get off of the walls. It forms pretty quickly, even if I don't use the spa, and in any temperature. I've been hesitant to disassemble the motor. I might as well get to it this summer.
    Location: Atlanta, Georgia.
    Pool: 15,000 gallon 32'x18', 3'-6' deep in-ground gunite pool, Sta-Rite 3 125 GPM 2-filter cartrige, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite pump, solar heater, Goldline SWG, Jandy controls, opaque automatic CoverStar solar pool cover, 3 waterfalls (not from spa).
    Spa: 485 gallon in-ground square acrylic over fiberglass suspended over gunite Sunset brand spa, isolated system, natural gas heater, 2-speed (4hp/11hp) main pump, 3hp booster pump, chlorine sanitized.

    To my pool store owner, nothing is more important than my pool and my money.

    Richard's PoolEquations Spreadsheet

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