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Thread: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

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    Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    New pool here. Details in sig.

    I was looking at my well report from 2 years ago it and shows levels of Iron(.22 ppm) and also Manganese(.08 ppm). I had water hauled in for the intial fill last fall, but had to add about 5k gallons from my well when I opened the pool this spring. Are these levels high enough to cause issues at some point from having to top the pool off from evaporation/splashout? If so, what type of setup might I need as far as filtering? Thanks.
    Completed: June 2011
    18' X 38' IG Vinyl, 3' - 8' depth ~ 24K gallons
    2 skimmers, 2 wall suctions, 3 returns, 1.5" piping

    Hayward Equipment: 1HP Tri-star 2-speed, Aqua-Plus SWG,
    Star-Clear Plus 175 sqft cartridge filter, Colorlogic 4.0 LED

    The Pool Cleaner 4X(suction)
    2011 Jacuzzi J-280 Hot tub

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    Those levels are fairly low and should not cause problems. Pools start having problems with metals around 0.2 Mg/L or higher. By the by, we normally use ppm, which is the same thing as Mg/L.
    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: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    Thanks for the reply, Jason.

    Unfortunately that was a typo. My Fe level is actually .22 ppm. Sounds like I have a problem here.
    Completed: June 2011
    18' X 38' IG Vinyl, 3' - 8' depth ~ 24K gallons
    2 skimmers, 2 wall suctions, 3 returns, 1.5" piping

    Hayward Equipment: 1HP Tri-star 2-speed, Aqua-Plus SWG,
    Star-Clear Plus 175 sqft cartridge filter, Colorlogic 4.0 LED

    The Pool Cleaner 4X(suction)
    2011 Jacuzzi J-280 Hot tub

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    Re: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    the .22 ppm is in your well, not your pool, right? If you added 5k, to 25k pool, you only added enough for 20% in the pool, or .04; this could add up over time, as you replace water loss from evap/backwash/etc, but should be ok for now!
    24ft x 52in AGP 18000 gal
    sand filter, 200#,1.5 hp single speed pump
    Wood deck (still in progress...)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    Ah, that isn't so good. If you have only put in 5k from the well out of 24k then your levels in the pool are probably fine right now. By the by, vinyl is less likely to stain than other pool surfaces, but if you have fiberglass stairs, they will start to stain well before the vinyl. Another thing to watch out for is that metals get more concentrated in the water as you add more water to replace evaporation.

    If I am following correctly, it doesn't sound like you will have a problem right away. If you do have problems, you can use sequestrant to bind to the metals and keep them from staining, but sequestrant needs to be constantly replenished, which ends up getting expensive over time.

    Another approach is to get a filter which can filter out iron, perhaps a greensand filter or something similar. Those filters tend to have low flow rates, which is annoying for filling the pool, but work well for topping off an already full pool.
    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: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    Another approach is to get a filter which can filter out iron, perhaps a greensand filter or something similar. Those filters tend to have low flow rates, which is annoying for filling the pool, but work well for topping off an already full pool.
    Are there any types of filters where I could simply attatch to the end of a garden hose for topping the pool off or am I looking at a hard piped system with cylinders similar to a water softener set-up?

    I'll tell ya, if it's not one thing....it's another
    Completed: June 2011
    18' X 38' IG Vinyl, 3' - 8' depth ~ 24K gallons
    2 skimmers, 2 wall suctions, 3 returns, 1.5" piping

    Hayward Equipment: 1HP Tri-star 2-speed, Aqua-Plus SWG,
    Star-Clear Plus 175 sqft cartridge filter, Colorlogic 4.0 LED

    The Pool Cleaner 4X(suction)
    2011 Jacuzzi J-280 Hot tub

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    Re: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    I don't think there is any mechanical method of removing metals in solution. (although there are products that SAY they will).

    If you have no other fill source, you might consider a water softener. A typical household softener does not have the capacity to fill a pool but it can maintain one once it's full.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    So a water softener will remove metals?
    Completed: June 2011
    18' X 38' IG Vinyl, 3' - 8' depth ~ 24K gallons
    2 skimmers, 2 wall suctions, 3 returns, 1.5" piping

    Hayward Equipment: 1HP Tri-star 2-speed, Aqua-Plus SWG,
    Star-Clear Plus 175 sqft cartridge filter, Colorlogic 4.0 LED

    The Pool Cleaner 4X(suction)
    2011 Jacuzzi J-280 Hot tub

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    Re: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    water softener with the right salt will help sequester and remove iron... unsure of details of how it works, but it does work on some level
    24ft x 52in AGP 18000 gal
    sand filter, 200#,1.5 hp single speed pump
    Wood deck (still in progress...)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    A standard water softener will remove some metals, but never all of them. Likewise none of the metal filters remove all of the metals, it is always a percentage. Still, the good metal filters remove a noticeably higher percentage than a water softener.
    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: Topping off pool with well water containing metals

    Do you notice a lot of staining in your tub, toilet and sink? Your ppm seems high to not have a noticeable amount of staining.

    I live on the south shore in MA so I know alot about low water ph and high iron content. I have a neutralizer to bring up the PH and a Filox system to remove the Iron and a softener to remove all the hardness added by the neutralizer. I have my own water treatment plant in the basement!!

    With that said, do NOT use a softener to remove iron, use an iron removal system, if you are handy you can install one yourself for about $700. I bought mine at cleanwaterstore online, but you can look around. Using a softener to remove iron is a huge waste of money, you have to add salt to the system constantly where as an iron system like my Filox system, it just backwashes every 6 days, and the media lasts over 6-8 years; its an install it and forget it system. I forget my before numbers but post number for maganese and iron are 0 ppm, I love it! Our dishwasher was orange when we first bought the house, it was awful, no staining whatsoever now.

    So last year I filled my 30,000 gal 33ft above ground pool over the course of a day and a half. The flow rate and the fact i didn't backwash the system over the course of the fill caused tons of iron to carry over. I wish I took pics but after putting in the chlorine, it turned mud brown. I ran my DE filter for a week straight and backwashed twice a day (one morning I found almost no water flow the filter was so clogged). After the week it was sparkling clear!! For about $100 in electricity (well pump and pool pump combined) $100 in DE, it beat the $900 quoted for pool water delivery. There was some staining at the water line that I scrubbed away easily with magic eraser.

    For fill water, the filox system can easily keep up and any iron that gets in the pool will be oxidized by the chlorine, the particles are then removed by the filter. Even without an iron removal system, the chlorine should oxidize the ferrous (or ferric, i forget), and be filtered out.

    Any questions let me know, I feel like an expert in this area...

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