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Thread: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

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    Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    Opened the pool earlier this week, heated the water to 63F and turned on my SWG to check the salt reading etc. When it generates, I'm getting the milky water from the return jets or main drain. I did a search and read that it is likely hydrogen bubbles, and they do appear to be bubbles. Problem is, this is year three with the pool and have never had this issue before. I don't have a multi speed pump. The salt cell looked good before it was hooked up. Any other ideas?
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    What are your PH, TA and CH levels?
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    How many returns do you have and what is the % output dialed up to? (I've only seen this problem once, on a ~15000 gallon pool with 1 return and the output at 50% on a SWCG for a 40,000 gal pool)
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    I have two returns, plus two main drain outlets. I had it set to about 70/30 main drain/return. The % is at 46%. I had not yet touched it from last summer.
    FC-3
    PH- 7.2
    TA- 70

    Something must be amiss cause this has never happened before. Could it be the equipment was not set up properly by the pool company upon opening(salt cell not put on or tightened properly, pump air leak)?
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    I don't know what causes that, but I do know that it doesn't cause any problems and seems to go away/get a lot less obvious after a several days to a week and properly balancing all your levels.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    I'll give it some time. We are away for 10 days starting Sunday, so we'll see what happens when we get back. I did read that it could be an air leak, and went out with the flashlight and noticed bubbles running through my pump basket. These bubbles cannot be seen in daylight.
    Anyhow, these boards are great and very helpful. Just made my donation.
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    Checked the pump basket this morning and you can now see the bubbles going through. They are small and appear to go in the direction of the water flow. If I switch from skimmer to autoclean, the basket partially empties and then fills up again. This is about the only thing different I can find from our first two years.
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    There are various places to look for a possible air leak. The two simplest ones are to check to see if a vortex is forming in the skimmer which can draw air in, and to check the seal around the lid of the pump strainer basket. If that doesn't work, you can try running a garden hose over one pipe joint at a time while watching the pump strainer basket. If the bubbles go away at any point, the joint you are running water on is the one that is leaking.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    Thanks, I will try that out later today.
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    jonmar,
    Does the bubbles appear and go away in sync with the cell turning on and off? If so, it's as a result of the Chlorine Generator.
    Turn your heater off, and see if this still occurs.
    If there's a way to increase flow through the cell (as opposed to there being a valve that may divert water away from the cell), do that also.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    The bubbles only appear while the SWG is activated. I have not had the heater running at the same time as the SWG yet this spring. I have a main drain, which was on 'suck' when they opened the pool but I switched it to return water once the pool was filled. I don't know how I would increase the flow over the cell otherwise. Would an air leak not decrease the flow?
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    A small air leak wouldn't have much effect, but a larger air leak is likely to reduce the flow rate significantly.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    I will say that in my first two seasons that when I vacuumed, there would sometimes be bubbles or water activity visible in the pump basket. Also when I would switch from main drain return to the jets, the first 10 seconds or so there would be some bubbling and gurgling from the jets. The pump basket always looked empty it was so clear at all other times. This is the first time I have ever seen bubbles in the basket under normal operation.
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    jonmar,
    As Jason said, it doesn't create any problems other that the visible bubbles/milky appearance of the pool. In my experience, it's been due to slower flow of water through the cell, a higher pH condition, or the effects of high pH and a gas heater activating.
    Since your replies does not support those conditions, other than possibly lower water flow, you can try acid washing the cell, even it appears clean.
    I've also had people treat for phosphate and reduce the bubbles.

    Let us know what happens. Have you contacted Hayward? Curious to what they say.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    It is pouring rain out so there isn't much I can do tonight. We leave for holiday tomorrow afternoon. I am going to try and check the pump tomorrow morning. I know there is a leak, cause when I turned it off I could hear a 'wheeze or hiss', put could not tell from wear due to the sound of the rain drowning it out. I will also try to acid wash my cell and report the results before I leave.
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    Rain cleared so I went out and while there still are bubbles, I cannot get the milky cloud to come back. The only difference is I am running the heater.
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    wow...different from what I would have thought. That's with the cell activated right?
    Thanks for the feed back...now to decipher, what would have caused the milky water to dissipate with the heater on? Or is it from the rain water?

    Regarding the hissing sound, lube your pump lid 0-ring with extra lube. Often, when the pump is off, if the lid is a little loose, it will allow a suction of air into the system...thus hissing. This can also cause there to be an air gap to appear in the pump lid area.
    If you see bubbles coming into the basket area, and you can see it coming from the inlet pipe, then you've got some sort of leak in your plumbing, or perhaps if you have a suction side pool cleaner, you may have a leak in the hose. Just throwning it out there.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    So, I spent the evening consuming Corona and cigarettes (I only smoke when I drink), trying to get the milky spew to come back. Mostly because my dad was over and I wanted to show him. Anyhow, heater on, heater off, SWG on, SWG off, return jets, return main drain, skimmer on, auto clean on, and I could not get the milky spew to come back. I have no idea now. Good news is the problem seems to be gone. Bad news is, I have no idea why. The bubbles still appear in the pumb basket and you can tell they are coming from the inlet pipe. The PB says they will check for a leak whilst I'm away.
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    Re: Milkly/cloudy water from jets when SWG is activated

    Jonmar,
    Have a Great holiday!
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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