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Thread: Do leaves add phosphates?

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    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    San Antonio
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    424

    Do leaves add phosphates?

    I have several Live Oaks around my pool and they are always dropping leaves into the pool. A pool repairman told me that the leaves add phosphates and I should add phosphate remover a couple times a year. What do you think?
    Larry in Texas

    Above ground 7,700 gallons, 19 inch sand filter ( 2 sq. ft.), Liquidator, and a WaterWay Hi-Flo Pump with an A.O. Smith 1 hp SF 1.0 motor.

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    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    San Rafael, CA USA
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    12,082

    Re: Do leaves add phosphates?

    Not necessary. You can maintain your pool to be free of algae using chlorine alone. Any extra algae food (phosphates and nitrates) from organic matter is going to be irrelevant when chlorine kills any blown-in algae faster than they can consume the food and reproduce.

    Technically, most of the phosphorous in leaves and other organic matter has been converted into phosphate bonds that generally won't get broken down to phosphate that algae can use, at least not very quickly. Usually you remove such organic matter from the pool via the skimmer, pump basket or pool sweep bag before it breaks down too much.
    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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    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Denton, TX
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    5,061

    Re: Do leaves add phosphates?

    Phosphates get into waterways from fertilizer runoff and detergents. Fertilizer, not plants and trees, are usually the culprit when phosphate levels climb in swimming pools. Still, as chem geek said, by maintaining proper chlorine levels in your pool, phosphates or no phosphates, you will not have algae.

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    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    San Antonio
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    424

    Re: Do leaves add phosphates?

    Thanks. That is exactly what I thought and consistent with my experience. Wanted to check as the guy really knows his pool repair and has been in the business for 30 years. Also, he doesn't sell chemicals, so he was just saying what he believed he knew. I guess the bottom line is he knows pool repair, but only thinks he knows pool chemicals. Thanks for the information.
    Larry in Texas

    Above ground 7,700 gallons, 19 inch sand filter ( 2 sq. ft.), Liquidator, and a WaterWay Hi-Flo Pump with an A.O. Smith 1 hp SF 1.0 motor.

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