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Thread: SWG or Not? (plus info about better Intex type filters)

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    frogabog's Avatar
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    SWG or Not? (plus info about better Intex type filters)

    Someday my walmart bundle will show up. And then I need to decide if to bother with the SWG or continue my successful BBB method as is.

    I have read a lot (too much) and it seems there's a lot more maintenance and hassles with the SWG than I have now with the very simple and time effective addition of a few cups of bleach every night. Takes all of 5 minutes. I'm not too put out by that at all.

    Seriously... all this flow issue this and adjusting and copper unplugging... is it REALLY less maintenance and less time consuming to go with the SWG? Really?? VS a few cups of bleach? Vacation is not in my future, and if it was I could get the neighbor to come add bleach. Big deal.

    I also do not want white salt film all over the yard and patio. Is that an issue at all?

    What I really wanted was the sand filter but the SWG comes with. Assuming it ever shows, I'll get the filter plus the bigger pump and all I'll have to do is fill w/sand and purchase DE. I then carry on with my business and continue to dose with bleach for the next 6w.

    For those who have done both... I ask if it is worth bothering with. I could likely sell the SWG and recoup most of the cost of the filter and pump.
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    I certainly prefer my SWG, the best upgrade I ever bought. They can get quite complicated occasionally, but only when something goes wrong. The great majority of the time they just work. Salt is not an issue unless the taste bothers you. Many people prefer salt even without the SWG.
    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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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    I really like having the intex swcg. That is why I jumped so quick on the Walmart deal, I was looking for another one. I love the bang for the buck of the intex. I probably would not have started using a swcg, but for the price. I rarely need to add chlorine (only did at startup), and the swcg just runs. If I was you, I would give it a try.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    frogabog's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    Salt is not an issue unless the taste bothers you.
    LOL, you assume I actually enter this pool in my back yard huh?

    Standing rule around here... mom "might" get in if the pool temp is 80 or above. I think I've been in there... twice??? Last summer.

    Haven't asked the kids if they will mind salty water... I doubt I'll bother to care if they do or not either.

    Is it more, or less simple to winterize a salt pool? Could I run the SWG into the fall underneath a winter cover at a low production setting till it gets near freezing or is that unnecessary? If I winterize this year as opposed to tearing it down, I will not be draining down past the ports like last year, as the rain collected on the cover. This year I plan to use the cover to tent it so all rain falls off and over the sides which means the water level will have to remain high. Any benefit to leaving it running in the fall in case a leaf or two gets through? Covering the pool (and keeping it covered) hasn't been highly successful so far although this year a large tarp and tent stakes might be employed.

    No salt film then, right?

    I remain unconvinced that I should bother with it, but if y'all keep posting I may change my mind. Thank you! :~}
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

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    Re: SWG or Not?

    The only thing a saltwater generator does is automate the dosing of chlorine in your pool water and make the water feel a bit softer...you can also run your FC a tad lower. That said, I paid $129 for mine 3 years ago and love it so much, there is a spare sitting in the garage. No jug dumping for me, but that's a personal preference No white film and you do not need DE in a sand filter, it is optional and rarely necessary

    ps...you winterize a sw pool just like any chlorine pool, with the added task to also store the SWG indoors.

    That walmart deal is something else, so if you get it, it's worth coverting IMO.
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

    Pool School, TFTestKits, Pool Calculator

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    frogabog's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    I've got a fine debris issue at the moment. I am unsure if the sand filter is going to handle it better than the two paper filters I've got attempting to pick it up right now. I am assuming DE will catch it if the sand by itself doesn't get it which by all accounts here, sand filters are not able to do alone. The main reason I wanted the sand filter is in a feeble attempt to stop the fines from falling to the floor, being vacuumed, and going right back into the pool to then drop again so I can vacuum them futilely again the next day! ARGH!
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

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    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    The fine particles fall to the floor regardless of what kind of filter you use. Sand filters can filter up to 30 microns and are far superior to the intex type cartridge filter. The dirtier a sand filter is, the better it filters, and DE helps a sand filter get "dirty" but that said it is not necessary. Here is what sand filtered water looks like...without DE.



    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

    Pool School, TFTestKits, Pool Calculator

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    Re: SWG or Not?

    Quote Originally Posted by frogabog
    I've got a fine debris issue at the moment. I am unsure if the sand filter is going to handle it better than the two paper filters I've got attempting to pick it up right now. I am assuming DE will catch it if the sand by itself doesn't get it which by all accounts here, sand filters are not able to do alone. The main reason I wanted the sand filter is in a feeble attempt to stop the fines from falling to the floor, being vacuumed, and going right back into the pool to then drop again so I can vacuum them futilely again the next day! ARGH!
    That sand filter will work much better than you intex paper filters. They are the worst filters I have seen.
    \
    Standing rule around here... mom "might" get in if the pool temp is 80 or above. I think I've been in there... twice??? Last summer.
    Also, sounds like frogabog needs some solar panels.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: SWG or Not?

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    Also, sounds like frogabog needs some solar panels.
    LOL, yes... considered it... but solar in Oregon is...

    I think sun is a partial requirement for solar heat right? hehe...

    Seriously, this summer is so lame it's not funny. We may see 80 next weekend but it's 70 till then, maybe. We saw 82 this weekend, all the freaks came out and played in their fishbelly white skin. Creepy!
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

  10. Back To Top    #10
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    Most SWGs stop working when the water gets down to the 50s.
    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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    frogabog's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    dang, no fair... cloudy day pool pics are lame. I keep forgetting to photo it when the sun is out, when that occurs kids want to be in it.

    Here's my pool dirt today, after a short swim just before it rained by my 13yo. It's very clear, but the clouds don't do it much justice unfortunately. Before anyone swam though it was like looking through glass, even under clouds and it's so glinty I can't help but admire it. I also haven't been able to vacuum for about 4 days due to dead batteries (or it's just broken for good, unsure).

    The wrinkles catch most, if not all of it as you see below. I vacuum it... it's back the next day or sooner.



    What a difference the sun makes...

    Cloudy day


    sunny day
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

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    Re: SWG or Not?

    Just out of curiosity, which intex filters are you using? Does the filter paper look like a spun fiber, or does it look like a paper with a dot pattern when dirty? I struggled with fine debris when I was using the intex filter with a spun fiber look (looks kinda like a dryer sheet). Then I bought a different brand of the filters, popped one in and within a day it was filthy, low flow. It appeared to be a thicker paper and after only 2 days (I washed it a couple times the second day) my pool was way, way clearer. I almost didn't install the sand filter I got off the walmart deal.

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    Re: SWG or Not?

    I've got dryer sheet filters. And two new ones purchased early last spring still in the wrapper. Hate em...

    Where'd you get those other filters? Brand? I intend to keep one cartridge filter going, prolly the one over the side. It doesn't bother us and the kids like to squirt each other with it. It draws off the bottom and I like that idea. Now I want your filters too!
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

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    Re: SWG or Not?

    It was part of a two pack from Walmart. "Universal Twin Pack Replacement A/C Filter Cartridges"

    Right above the barcode on the lower right of the packaging it says Distributed by Walmart.

    I used to have the spun fiber ones, they were sold in a single pack. I bought those because they "looked" like they were sealed better at the top and bottom, but the two packs had the better paper.

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    Re: SWG or Not?

    Now I'm going to go look. These are last year's and maybe even the previous year's models. Always in a two pack though.
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

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    frogabog's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    Guess what? Those new filters ARE the ones you described. H bought them at the end of the season last year, not early in the spring like I said before. Now I recall him bringing them home saying they were cheaper and looked a little different.

    So I promptly changed both old filters out (new this season, but the other style) and put the dotty ones in. Brushed the pool floor to stir it all up, and grilled some pork chops.

    The pool still looks clear but I can tell the fines are suspended cuz it's not perfect. The heavy stuff has fallen already, it's the big chunky stuff (prolly bugs), not the dirty looking stuff. Yet.

    Thank you for pointing this out, I am going to brush again tonight and maybe tomorrow I'll think I don't need the sand filter too. I will still install it. Why not? :~}
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

  17. Back To Top    #17
    frogabog's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    It's 11:30 PM. I just went out to check the pool.

    There's NOTHING on the floor. Well, other than the 3 bugs and a bit of larger debris in the center.

    Any other evening, the dust would have settled. This is good. Thank you so much for telling me to try those filters. WOW!

    Hope to report more good stuff tomorrow. :~}
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

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    Re: SWG or Not?

    8:30 AM

    Floor is not all clear, but it's different. The dirt is sparse and mostly larger particles that I can actually see are larger, much larger. Very little in the wrinkles.

    Too bad a kid dropped the brush into the pool last night and is still asleep or I'd try to brush that stuff up and get it booking into the better filters again.

    Overall... a huge success. I didn't know those filters were better. Not a walmart fan... but I guess they make a good filter. Intex... you stink at filter making!
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Re: SWG or Not?

    Nothing but vacuuming gets the crud off the floor, but after a heavy bather load, or if the water isn't quite so clear, you might notice the pool clears quicker with the better filter. Don't forget to wash it off more frequently.

  20. Back To Top    #20
    frogabog's Avatar
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    Re: SWG or Not?

    I've always just vacuumed daily. Figured it was just the way it was. My Aqua broom is not working at the moment, I'm about to go out and use the hose powered vac. Time to fill a bit in the pool anyway.

    I can already see how it would provide a quicker clear after swimming. In only 3 hours last night it was as clear as it's ever been after sitting for 18'ish hours after swimmers and it seemed like they had practically pulled every bit of the "dust" I've been battling already. They are by far better than the dryer sheet kind. I only wish I'd opened that package this spring rather than the Intex filters.

    "I'll go get you some more of those if you like them" and "Spray those old filters out and put them in the yard sale" (Quotes from H this morning)

    I'm now experiencing more air in the Intex (skimmer) pump than I'd like again. Can't wait for the sand filter to mosey it's way out west... apparently by way of the Oregon Trail wagon train.
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

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