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Thread: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

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    Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    I opened my pool only last year, and on opening, immediately went with a swcg, and it's great. I did notice something disturbing though. The metal part that goes on top of the pool wall (not the rail) - looks like a U or J channel - is rusting. I have heard about the 'electrochemical corrosion' involved with metals around saltwater pools, but I need to make some changes, obviously. The rails are also metal, but are not showing signs of rust. I am thinking that perhaps I need to be preemptive to worsening rust conditions and replace the metal channel that is rusting with aluminum - if they make that, or perhaps take them off, remove the rust and spray down with rustoleum?

    I know there are some that totally feel like people that use swcg with an above ground pool are idiots, but frankly it is so low maintenance and pleasant to swim in, that I don't see myself converting back to traditional chlorine. I greatly appreciate any and all suggestions.

    Thanks!

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    Welcome to TFP.

    We don't see a lot of problems reported but we've seen a few lately. Id' remove the parts if you can and clean and coat them with a good grade of paint.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    Are there any factors you can think of that are causing me to see rust this early in the life of the metal? Last year my ppm was about 3500, this year is a just a little higher 3600 - do I need to be lower? Would that make a difference?

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    Lowering it wouldn't make a difference. At that range you should be below the level that should cause problems. You'd most likely be seeing the same thing in a non-swcg setup.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    So seeing rust on the channel in only the 2nd year of use is out of the ordinary? Can you think of any thing that I need to or can check to stop whatever factors are accelerating the rust?

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    I'd talk to the mfg and see what they say about it. You shouldn't be seeing rust this soon.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    i think mfg warranty may be voided if using saltwater

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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    I have the same thing, mine is 3 years and doesn't seem to get any worse. I'm not worried about.
    24' AG Doughboy w/ 5'8 dish bottom, CWII DE Filter, 1.5 hayward 2 speed pump, Aquatrol SWG.

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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    I changed over to Saltwater for the last two season and the salt really ate away the cross bars and legs of my Ultra Frame 16' x 52" pool. This year I bought replacement parts for those severely rusted away and ditched the salt going back to Chlorine. Sure its not as gentle but at least I will not loose my pool frame. Oh and did I mention the salt water ate up my Intex ladder to. Had to go Fiberglass.

    I don't recommend going with a Saltwater System

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    Quote Originally Posted by kidfam
    I changed over to Saltwater for the last two season and the salt really ate away the cross bars and legs of my Ultra Frame 16' x 52" pool. This year I bought replacement parts for those severely rusted away and ditched the salt going back to Chlorine. Sure its not as gentle but at least I will not loose my pool frame. Oh and did I mention the salt water ate up my Intex ladder to. Had to go Fiberglass.

    I don't recommend going with a Saltwater System
    I am sorry you had a bad experience with your swg. Your experience is not typical of most users experience using a swg with the intex ultra frame.
    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: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    I think I found some of the issues that caused the advanced rusting:
    1. my salt water system was not grounded (at all); now properly bonded and grounded with 8ft copper rod
    2. i was not balancing my pH (at all), which, as i read in an article online, can contribute to rusting more than the salt itself.

    unfortunately, i am having to replace the (entire) top track, as it is compromised by rust. fortunately, I think i am getting to it before other parts are compromised.

    i do believe that other parts will still succumb to rust, which i will carefully monitor year to year, and I will eventually replace the pool with a resin (salt water safe) pool.

    any thoughts?

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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    Vinnybear...we are having the same problem with our SWG. What is the world is grounding of a saltwater system? We were never told about the almost 6 years ago when we bought our Aqua-Trol SWG system. What is the deal with bonded and grounded 8 ft copper rod? Where did you find the replacement parts for the top track? I have searched all over the internet for top track for our pool. Thanks

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    Re: Above Ground Saltwater Pool rust

    In the process now of replacing my top rail with these aluminum ones:
    http://www.teddybearpools.com/catalog/a ... _wall.html
    They were slightly too long, so I ordered 19 for my 27' pool and cut a couple inches off each with a Dremel tool cut off wheel.

    In this process, I am also removing rust/scaling with drill/wire brush attachment, then repainting with Rustoleum. I am also removing scaling from the top plates and coating them with clear Rustoleum.

    Moreover, I have taken steps to prevent rust, which is not just because of having a salt water pool. In the past I did not pay attention to have a balanced pH, which can encourage rust, and my swg was not grounded, which created a loose current (that I could feel when cleaning out the skimmer on the pump (I just never thought anything of it)); this also encourages rust. Details on grounding your swg are in the install/instruction manual that came with the AquaTrol.

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