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Thread: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dichlor

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    US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dichlor

    I am not a chemist. But I don't like getting ripped off ... nor do I like doing stupid things ... plus I would like to learn more about pools and pool chemistry ... specifically ... I'd like to know what I just put in my pool two days ago!

    So I post this query seeking more information!

    Based on price, and an assumption of available chlorine, I bought a case of Costco 4-in-1 pool shock (Costco Item #175121, EPA registration number 67262-27) which is manufactured for a company in Georgia named "Recreational Water Products, AquaChem Division". I put half that case, so far, into my new-to-me pool (because it's a swamp).

    Belatedly, I found out in another thread, that I almost certainly miscalculated the cost per available chlorine - and probably wasted my money.

    I feel deceived. Note: I'll call a different number on Monday (800-859-7946), which is their Customer Service, to complain about the poor labeling (which they almost certainly did on purpose).

    I suspect deceptive advertising for a number of reasons:
    a) The box doesn't state the available chlorine;
    b) When I called customer service, they wouldn't tell me the available chlorine level (800-252-7665);
    c) The box touts that it's a 4-in-1 product (as if that's a good thing) but doesn't list the other three ingredients.

    What did I just put into my pool?

    Googling, I find the Pool Time Shock Plus 4-IN-1 POOL SHOCK MSDS, which lists, cryptically, two of the ingredients as:
    - Trade secret 001 = 5% to 15%
    - Trade secret 016 = 1% to 10%

    That's not all that helpful (unless someone here has a 'trade-secret' secret decoder ring?).

    Digging in another direction, right below the ingredients are the words "US Patent no. 5,670,059".

    Hmmm... Googling for that, I find it's a patent taken out on September 23, 1997, perhaps not surprisingly by folks in Georgia, titled:
    - Method and compositions for treating recirculating water systems.

    It's a difficult read (for a non chemist non-pool afficianado, anyway) but the patent implies that "a preferred composition ... includes 60% sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione, 20% sodium persulfate, 10% sodium tetraborate, and 10% aluminum sulfate (an additional clarifying agent)."

    Further reading of that patent spends a lot of time to say they sometimes add something called glycoluril, apparently to slow down what they call the 'erosion' of the source material (maybe they add the glycoluril for tablets only?). Even after reading about glycoluril, I was unable to understand what it does in a pool at the 1ppm to 5ppm levels the patent implies.

    Trying to come to a conclusion, I guess these are 5 possibilities for the 4 components in the Costco 4-in-1 shock solution:
    1. Sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione (58.2%)
    2. Sodium tetraborate (~10%)
    3. Sodium persulfate, added as an oxygen donor (~20%)
    4. Aluminum sulfate, added as a clarifier (~10%)
    5. A glycoluril-based chemical to slow down (tablet?) erosion (~1.8%)

    Again, I fully admit I'm not a chemist! I don't even understand pools. And I certainly don't understand pool chemicals. But - I have a pool (new to me) and I really want to know more about what I just put in my pool (and what, presumably, thousands of others are putting into their pool today).

    Given I can't be the only one to use Costco pool chemicals, and given I already put this stuff in my pool, it would be useful to know MORE about what the consequences of these 4 (or 5?) chemicals are in our pools.

    For the consequences of the boron, I'll read "So you want to add borates to your pool--Why and How".

    But, do we know the consequences of adding the other chemicals in this 4-in-1 solution?
    Silicon Valley, 38,500 gallons in-ground plaster; Sta-Rite System 3 Model S8M150, 259 sqft cartridge 25022-0203S + 191 sqft cartridge #25021-0202S = 450 sqft filter@0.28gpm/sqft = 125 gpm@50psi max. Three 220v Sta-Rite Max-e-Glas II pumps {AO Smith QC1102 1.0x1.65SF for filter + cleaner; SQ1152 1.5x1.47SF for spa jets; square 48Y flange}. 13 Fafco 12'x4' professionally installed "Revolution" solar heating panels + Raypak RP2100 P-R 405A-EP LPG 399,000/hour heater + Compool Lx3600 controller + Infinity 4000 automatic pool cover (120v 3/4 HP motor); both skimmers are NOT filtered & serve only as intake for 9-port water valves (aka cleaner heads) controlling fifteen Paramount PCC2000 3" self-cleaning jets with the optional Debris Containment Canister.

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    Hi, I will answer within your post.

    Quote Originally Posted by rock
    I am not a chemist. But I don't like getting ripped off ... nor do I like doing stupid things ... plus I would like to learn more about pools and pool chemistry ... specifically ... I'd like to know what I just put in my pool two days ago!

    So I post this query seeking more information!

    Based on price, and an assumption of available chlorine, I bought a case of Costco 4-in-1 pool shock (Costco Item #175121, EPA registration number 67262-27) which is manufactured for a company in Georgia named "Recreational Water Products, AquaChem Division". I put half that case, so far, into my new-to-me pool (because it's a swamp).

    Belatedly, I found out in another thread, that I almost certainly miscalculated the cost per available chlorine - and probably wasted my money.

    I feel deceived. Note: I'll call a different number on Monday (800-859-7946), which is their Customer Service, to complain about the poor labeling (which they almost certainly did on purpose).

    I suspect deceptive advertising for a number of reasons:
    a) The box doesn't state the available chlorine;
    b) When I called customer service, they wouldn't tell me the available chlorine level (800-252-7665);
    c) The box touts that it's a 4-in-1 product (as if that's a good thing) but doesn't list the other three ingredients.

    What did I just put into my pool?

    Googling, I find the Pool Time Shock Plus 4-IN-1 POOL SHOCK MSDS, which lists, cryptically, two of the ingredients as:
    - Trade secret 001 = 5% to 15%
    - Trade secret 016 = 1% to 10%

    That's not all that helpful (unless someone here has a 'trade-secret' secret decoder ring?).

    Digging in another direction, right below the ingredients are the words "US Patent no. 5,670,059".

    Hmmm... Googling for that, I find it's a patent taken out on September 23, 1997, perhaps not surprisingly by folks in Georgia, titled:
    - Method and compositions for treating recirculating water systems.

    It's a difficult read (for a non chemist non-pool afficianado, anyway) but the patent implies that "a preferred composition ... includes 60% sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione, 20% sodium persulfate, 10% sodium tetraborate, and 10% aluminum sulfate (an additional clarifying agent)."

    Further reading of that patent spends a lot of time to say they sometimes add something called glycoluril, apparently to slow down what they call the 'erosion' of the source material (maybe they add the glycoluril for tablets only?). Even after reading about glycoluril, I was unable to understand what it does in a pool at the 1ppm to 5ppm levels the patent implies.

    Trying to come to a conclusion, I guess these are 5 possibilities for the 4 components in the Costco 4-in-1 shock solution:
    1. Sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione (58.2%) This is the chlorine, specifically dichlor.It is stabilized with conditioner, also known as CYA. Over time too much CYA can cause problems.
    2. Sodium tetraborate (~10%)This is what we refer to as borates. They improve the feel of the water and act as a mild algacide. They are a good thing, but you should add them when you want to add them and they are effective at the recommended levels. Excess borates may be harmful to people and pets if swallowed in large quantities.
    3. Sodium persulfate, added as an oxygen donor (~20%)This is a non-chlorine oxidizer, best for indoor pools. Not needed in conjunction with chlorine.
    4. Aluminum sulfate, added as a clarifier (~10%)This causes small bugs and dirt to drop out of solution so they may be vacuumed more easily.
    5. A glycoluril-based chemical to slow down (tablet?) erosion (~1.8%)I have no info on this one.

    Again, I fully admit I'm not a chemist! I don't even understand pools. And I certainly don't understand pool chemicals. But - I have a pool (new to me) and I really want to know more about what I just put in my pool (and what, presumably, thousands of others are putting into their pool today).

    Given I can't be the only one to use Costco pool chemicals, and given I already put this stuff in my pool, it would be useful to know MORE about what the consequences of these 4 (or 5?) chemicals are in our pools.

    For the consequences of the boron, I'll read "So you want to add borates to your pool--Why and How".

    But, do we know the consequences of adding the other chemicals in this 4-in-1 solution?
    The usual negative consequence is that you waste your money adding chemicals that are not needed, especially when shocking your pool. This is why we recommend liquid chlorine for the shock process and maintaining normal chlorine levels. All it adds is chlorine and a little salt. It is more cost effective in the long run to avoid the "all in one" approach to pool care and buy the chemicals separately so you only add what is needed when it is needed.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    When you have the EPA registration number, then you can look up info in the PAN Database where I found this record saying that the product has 58.2% Sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione. So compared to Dichlor dihydrate, which is 85% Sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione (i.e. not including the dihydrate), the product you got was 68.5% of what you would get with a normal Dichlor dihydrate product.

    You can also sometimes find an MSDS that will list some of the ingredients.
    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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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    The four "features" are oxidizers, water clarifiers, flocculants and buffers. Dichlor is the oxidizer. Clarifier tends to cause any debris in the water to clump together. Flocculant causes debris in the water to settle to the bottom. And borates are added as a "buffer", which raises the PH to counter the acidity of dichlor. In practice the clarifier and flocculant are essentially useless, while the borate is vaguely handy (unless you are actually trying to lower the PH).

    The real problem is that dichlor also contains CYA. If you use very much of this product your CYA level will very rapidly get too high and cause major problems.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    the product you got was 68.5% of what you would get with a normal Dichlor dihydrate product.
    Thanks chem geek for confirming that information.

    I based all my calculations on your formula in another thread, so I doubly appreciate the confirmation of the cost-per-available chlorine calculation!

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    You can also sometimes find an MSDS that will list some of the ingredients.
    Thanks. I did look up the MSDS but the ones I found simply listed secret ingredients in addition to the dichlor dihydrate.

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    The four "features" are oxidizers, water clarifiers, flocculants and buffers.
    Thanks Jason. I'm realizing the 'four-in-one' are features, not necessarily chemicals.

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    The real problem is that dichlor also contains CYA.
    Understood. I'm at 55ppm CYA and I wouldn't want it much higher.
    Silicon Valley, 38,500 gallons in-ground plaster; Sta-Rite System 3 Model S8M150, 259 sqft cartridge 25022-0203S + 191 sqft cartridge #25021-0202S = 450 sqft filter@0.28gpm/sqft = 125 gpm@50psi max. Three 220v Sta-Rite Max-e-Glas II pumps {AO Smith QC1102 1.0x1.65SF for filter + cleaner; SQ1152 1.5x1.47SF for spa jets; square 48Y flange}. 13 Fafco 12'x4' professionally installed "Revolution" solar heating panels + Raypak RP2100 P-R 405A-EP LPG 399,000/hour heater + Compool Lx3600 controller + Infinity 4000 automatic pool cover (120v 3/4 HP motor); both skimmers are NOT filtered & serve only as intake for 9-port water valves (aka cleaner heads) controlling fifteen Paramount PCC2000 3" self-cleaning jets with the optional Debris Containment Canister.

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    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    Called 800-859-7946; Pressed 1 for Biolab; Asked for technical support.
    Got Scott in Technical Solutions; He asked for the 'product code' which is "22112AQU"
    I asked what's the available chlorine.
    He said 36%.
    I asked if it's a dihydrate, and he confirmed it was.
    He said it's a class 1 oxidizer.

    We then talked a bit about the box and he said the Marketing guys own the printing on the box and they sometimes put the available chlorine and sometimes don't.

    When I mentioned PoolTime at Home Depot had the same problem of missing information, he told me the parent company is "ChemTura BioLab" who owns the three brands under the "Recreational Water Products" umbrella (which are chemically identical, he says), those divisions being AquaChem, PoolTime, and SpaTime.

    He said PoolTime goes to Home Depot who wants to differentiate from Lowes.
    AquaChem goes to Lowes and Walmart (and sometimes CostCo when they can get in the door).

    He said the purpose of the ingredients are:
    - 60% sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione (oxidizer, 36% available chlorine)
    - 20% sodium persulfate (oxidize the combined chlorines)
    - 10% sodium tetraborate (buffer)
    - 10% aluminum sulfate (clarifier)

    I then called 800-252-7665 & got Jordan in Customer Care in Atlanta, Georgia.

    Jordan confirmed the company tree and said the 4-in-1 didn't refer to ingredients, but it referred to four benefits, namely:
    1. algaecide & bacteriacide
    2. reduce contaminants
    3. water softener <== ?
    4. clarifier

    I complained that the 36% is rather low for an oxidant and he protested saying people don't buy shock for oxidizing. They buy shock because they have a party and they need to raise the chlorine level immediately and he said this stuff dissolves quickly (maybe the glycoluril?).

    My "new" assumption is we can assume 36% if a dichlor doesn't state the available chlorine.

    Thanks everyone for helping get to the bottom of 'what' is inside this Costco 4-in-1 pool shock!
    Silicon Valley, 38,500 gallons in-ground plaster; Sta-Rite System 3 Model S8M150, 259 sqft cartridge 25022-0203S + 191 sqft cartridge #25021-0202S = 450 sqft filter@0.28gpm/sqft = 125 gpm@50psi max. Three 220v Sta-Rite Max-e-Glas II pumps {AO Smith QC1102 1.0x1.65SF for filter + cleaner; SQ1152 1.5x1.47SF for spa jets; square 48Y flange}. 13 Fafco 12'x4' professionally installed "Revolution" solar heating panels + Raypak RP2100 P-R 405A-EP LPG 399,000/hour heater + Compool Lx3600 controller + Infinity 4000 automatic pool cover (120v 3/4 HP motor); both skimmers are NOT filtered & serve only as intake for 9-port water valves (aka cleaner heads) controlling fifteen Paramount PCC2000 3" self-cleaning jets with the optional Debris Containment Canister.

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    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    Remember that the 68.5% I gave you was purity relative to 99% pure Dichlor Dihydrate product, NOT an absolute % Available Chlorine. The % Available Chlorine of 100% pure Dichlor Dihydrate is 55.4% while the typical 99% pure product is 54.9% (i.e. 55%). 0.99*55.4%*0.685 = 37.6% so close to the 36% they are quoting so everything is consistent here.

    I wouldn't assume that if it's not labeled then it's 36% available chlorine. If it's not labeled, it could be anything. Just stay away from products whose contents are not known.
    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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    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    everything is consistent here.
    Ah. Thanks again for clarifying. Your grasp of the facts is amazing!

    In summary, we now know what's inside of the 4-in-1 Costco dichlor dihydrate - and we know the available chlorine (which was unknown at the start of this thread). Personally, I can't think of a good reason to use this stuff now that I know what it is.
    Silicon Valley, 38,500 gallons in-ground plaster; Sta-Rite System 3 Model S8M150, 259 sqft cartridge 25022-0203S + 191 sqft cartridge #25021-0202S = 450 sqft filter@0.28gpm/sqft = 125 gpm@50psi max. Three 220v Sta-Rite Max-e-Glas II pumps {AO Smith QC1102 1.0x1.65SF for filter + cleaner; SQ1152 1.5x1.47SF for spa jets; square 48Y flange}. 13 Fafco 12'x4' professionally installed "Revolution" solar heating panels + Raypak RP2100 P-R 405A-EP LPG 399,000/hour heater + Compool Lx3600 controller + Infinity 4000 automatic pool cover (120v 3/4 HP motor); both skimmers are NOT filtered & serve only as intake for 9-port water valves (aka cleaner heads) controlling fifteen Paramount PCC2000 3" self-cleaning jets with the optional Debris Containment Canister.

  9. Back To Top    #9
    Smykowski's Avatar
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    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    Quote Originally Posted by rock
    Personally, I can't think of a good reason to use this stuff now that I know what it is.
    I really enjoy reading threads like these, because they all lead me to the same conclusion. These products all promise to be the magic bullet for some problem or another, but in the end they all end up being bad for my pool and good for the manufacturer's bottom line.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
    The most important article on this site - The ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

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    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    Note that sodium persulfate (sodium Peroxydisulfate) is a known irritant, and can cause some people to have an adverse reaction. It is not the same thing as MPS (Potassium peroxymonosulfate).

  11. Back To Top    #11

    Re: US Patent 5,670,059 Do we know any more about 4-in-1 dic

    By way of update, I called again today, 800-859-7946; pressed 1 for Biolab and then pressed 2 for technical support ... and they quoted me 35.6% available chlorine.
    Silicon Valley, 38,500 gallons in-ground plaster; Sta-Rite System 3 Model S8M150, 259 sqft cartridge 25022-0203S + 191 sqft cartridge #25021-0202S = 450 sqft filter@0.28gpm/sqft = 125 gpm@50psi max. Three 220v Sta-Rite Max-e-Glas II pumps {AO Smith QC1102 1.0x1.65SF for filter + cleaner; SQ1152 1.5x1.47SF for spa jets; square 48Y flange}. 13 Fafco 12'x4' professionally installed "Revolution" solar heating panels + Raypak RP2100 P-R 405A-EP LPG 399,000/hour heater + Compool Lx3600 controller + Infinity 4000 automatic pool cover (120v 3/4 HP motor); both skimmers are NOT filtered & serve only as intake for 9-port water valves (aka cleaner heads) controlling fifteen Paramount PCC2000 3" self-cleaning jets with the optional Debris Containment Canister.

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