Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 35

Thread: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

  1. Back To Top    #1

    I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Hi Friends! I've recently acquired a used Blue Ridge Spa. The history is that the previous owner bought it from someone who forgot to winterize it. I know what winterizing means but what I don't know is to what extent the damage was. Nevertheless, the person I bought the spa from said he personally replumbed the tub and basically rewired it and used it a short time before moving and sold it to me for $500. It's a 5-7 person although that seems a little overated to me. By my measurements it holds about 650 gallons. Luckily I found an owners manual for it that is almost the same. I say almost because after wiring it up to a new dedicated 220 box, including a new spa panel, it worked fine for about 2 weeks and then shut down power. Come to find out that the fuse configuration is ever so slightly different in the manual I downloaded that the schematic I found on the spa pack cover. I discovered that the previous owner had used blue fuses which I quickly discovered were for 110 not 220. After replacing the fuses, all is back up and running well. The water got to smelling and cloudy so I immediately drained the tub and refilled only to find that only the #2 jets worked and not the #1 jets. I learned on this site about air-locking. I found the union that was the culprit and got that problem solved and now, not only are both jet sets working but their working with more velocity than before! I do have an Ozonator but I have no idea if it works, I have to assume it does work but I know not what it's function is.

    There, now I've given you all the background I can think of before moving on to asking your help. One of my issues is there are constantly white granules in the bottom of the tub. I can siphon them out but they come back. I THINK however, that it is the chemical I'm using. I went to Wal-Mart and bought HtH Brand Shock, Bromine Tablets, Chlorinating Sanitizer and Defoaming Solution. Along with that we bought PH Up and Down. Now I've never used the tablets. The only Bromine I ever used was once and that was the very last time I filled it after draining. I bought the little packet of granules that 1/2oz. treats 100 gallons. I think that it is the Shock or the Chlorinating granules that are not dissolving completely and resting at the bottom of the tub. I do run the jets whenever I add chemicals. I supposed I should mention that the filters (there are two of them) are of the type that screw into the ports at the bottom of the filter chamber. I DO thoroughly pressure spray them with the garden hose nozzle gun and it seems to do well. The test kit also came from Wal-Mart and it's nothing more than a glorified test kit that you would buy for an aquarium. It tests Ph and Chlorine and that's about it.

    I don't know what else to mention other than we use the tub nearly daily and sometime multiple times during the course of a 24-hour period. We let it get cool when it's hot like now and then turn on the heater when the late nights are more chilly. The maximum occupants is three adults but usually just the two of us.

    I'm hoping you guys can provide questions that I can answer, that will help you help me to provide consistent, good quality water. I'm also hoping you can direct me in all my ways of error to improve my techniques. Somehow I think that HtH is not a good quality chemical base and I also need to get a more spa-specific testing kit.

    I know all of this is long-winded but I wanted to give you ALL the information without leaving little details out. I've read a fair bit on here and I am very impressed not only with the knowledge but also with the willingness of its members to provide that knowledge. I'm an avid classic BMW enthusiast and am part of an equally impressive group of people that fully support the hobby so I know a decent support group when I see one.

    Thanks folks!

  2. Back To Top    #2
    linen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
    Posts
    8,649

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Welcome to tfp, Bimmer

    I am not up to speed on Bromine tubs, but it does not sound like that is how you are sanitizing.

    Since your use of the tub is quite regular, your tub is a good candidate for using chlorine as you sanitizer.

    See this thread for the "dichlor then bleach" approach, it works great for me: http://www.troublefreepool.com/how-d...ol-t10095.html

    Let us know if you have questions!
    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.

  3. Back To Top    #3
    harleysilo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Georgia
    Posts
    1,924

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Well you clearly are able to trouble shoot! You've found the right place. Since you all are using it regularly I too say go chlorine, dose it every day and test every day. Love me some old school beemers! What do you drive? Pics?
    18'x43' Sport Pool
    19,000 Gallons Vinyl Liner 3'-3.5'-4'
    SWCG and D.E. Filter
    Test Kits - Pool Calculator - Chlorine/CYA Chart - Pool School

    Secret Weapon for Pool Chemistry Testing

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Thank you linen and Harley for the welcome. I just tested the water after using it last night with my wife for over an hour and the PH is 7.6-7.8 and the Chlorine is colorless. I'm thinking using bleach would be easier and more cost effective but I don't know how much to use for my 600 gallon spa.

    As for the bimmer Harley, it's a 1978 E21 320i sport model. I bought it on Ebay in 2004 to restore. In 2006 I completely rebuild the engine from the bare block up. I tossed all the California emissions stuff and installed a Stahl header. Last year I replaced the control arms, the tie rods and reconditioned the steering rack. While that was all out I replaced the front and rear suspension with Bilstein's. Last fall I had custom seat cover made for the Recaro seats and recovered the parcel panel in the back window and then put in an all new stereo system with JVC head unit, Alpine amp, Polk front speakers and Boston Acoustic rear speakers. Two weeks after getting all that done, my oil pump took a dump on me and I spun a bearing so now the engine is back out to have the crank polished and then I'll put it all back together with new rod bearings.

    Here's a pic:


    Here's a video from 2 years ago. Just click on the pic.

  5. Back To Top    #5
    harleysilo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Georgia
    Posts
    1,924

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Man we need some speedo shots in that vid!!!
    18'x43' Sport Pool
    19,000 Gallons Vinyl Liner 3'-3.5'-4'
    SWCG and D.E. Filter
    Test Kits - Pool Calculator - Chlorine/CYA Chart - Pool School

    Secret Weapon for Pool Chemistry Testing

  6. Back To Top    #6
    linen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
    Posts
    8,649

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Use poolcalculator.com to find how much to add. Don't forget to put your tubs volume in.

    I ran the numbers and to go from 0 to 6 ppm in your 600 gallon tub, poolcalculator.com gives me 7.5 ounces of 6% bleach.
    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.

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    Use poolcalculator.com to find how much to add. Don't forget to put your tubs volume in.

    I ran the numbers and to go from 0 to 6 ppm in your 600 gallon tub, poolcalculator.com gives me 7.5 ounces of 6% bleach.
    Thank you linen! It's an average but a pretty close one. My spa has two levels. Well duh!....here's a pic I took before we got it wired and filled.


  8. Back To Top    #8
    linen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
    Posts
    8,649

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Just noticed you listed your tub as 650 gallons, so to go from 0 to 6 ppm FC will require 8.1 ounces of 6% bleach...not a big difference.
    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.

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Ok, in the last two days we've used the tub twice. Usually our spa dips are late night between 10pm and midnight and they usually last an hour or a little longer. The temperature varies. When it's hot we prefer a cool tub water 33C (91.4F). On cooler nights we'll crank it up until the display reads 39C (102.2F). I wish I knew how to switch the display to Fahrenheit or if it even does. I found that we bought some cheap bleach to pour down our home drains to help keep tree roots at bay but it's only 3% so after church yesterday I got some 6% bleach, ran the jets and poured a full cup in. Last night we used the tub and the water was still a tad dingy. I'm looking for clear water. We were in the spa about an hour and I tested the water early this morning and CL read about 4, the Bromine read close to 6 and the Ph read in the 8.0 range or a tad higher. As soon as payday arrives I'm going to invest in a decent drop test kit. I'm seeing a lot of 5-way drop test kits on Ebay for under $15. What warrants me spending 4 times as much for either of the kits I've read about in this forum? And while we're on the subject of kits, are kits dated to indicate freshness. As an avid aquarist, I know that testing chemicals have a tendency to go flat and not produce accurate results when testing. How do you address that issue? Wish I could give you more info but until I do get a better kit, this is what I have to work with. I noticed no one said anything about additives and about whether or not HtH brand from Walmart were usable or not. I'm still reading and trying to learn the water mechanics of all this. Where do I obtain Dichlor?

    Thanks folks!

  10. Back To Top    #10
    linen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
    Posts
    8,649

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    At only 3X the cost: http://tftestkits.net/TF-50-Test-Kit-p55.html this kit gets you the FAS-DPD test. The FAS-DPD test allows you to test FC directly and up to 50 ppm...most other tests only go up to 5 ppm, and the OTO chlorine test only goes up to 5 ppm.

    When it the list time you changed the water?

    Have you ever done a decontamination of the tub since you bought it? See: http://www.poolspaforum.com/forum/in...64&#entry61564
    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.

  11. Back To Top    #11

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    When it the list time you changed the water?
    I drained the tub, cleaned the inside and refilled it about 5 days ago. We've had it up and running for about 6 weeks now and have drained it and refilled three times.

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    Have you ever done a decontamination of the tub since you bought it?
    No, we just cleaned the inside of the tub with mild soap.

  12. Back To Top    #12
    harleysilo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Georgia
    Posts
    1,924

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Have you thought about how often you plan to drain/refill yours? From how to maintain your spa with chlorine "Hot tub water should be changed every 3-5 months depending on usage.". What does 600 gallons cost you where you are at? As of right now you can't test CYA, can you?

    I've settled on the following for maintain my 250 gallon hot tub.

    empty-refill-adjust CYA to 50 with stabilizer-(my PH and TA and CH from fill water are all fine) test everyday or two and add bleach to maintain FC levels. Add bleach at end of every session when in use ( i have a premarked cup, just measure and pour it in). refill every 3 months.

    Now if I get tired of the bleach additions (which may happen when it's too cold to be using the pool) I may go to using a floater with stabilized chlorine, so i don't have to manually add chlorine every couple of days (only when I use it).
    18'x43' Sport Pool
    19,000 Gallons Vinyl Liner 3'-3.5'-4'
    SWCG and D.E. Filter
    Test Kits - Pool Calculator - Chlorine/CYA Chart - Pool School

    Secret Weapon for Pool Chemistry Testing

  13. Back To Top    #13

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by harleysilo
    Have you thought about how often you plan to drain/refill yours? From how to maintain your spa with chlorine "Hot tub water should be changed every 3-5 months depending on usage.". What does 600 gallons cost you where you are at? As of right now you can't test CYA, can you?

    I've settled on the following for maintain my 250 gallon hot tub.

    empty-refill-adjust CYA to 50 with stabilizer-(my PH and TA and CH from fill water are all fine) test everyday or two and add bleach to maintain FC levels. Add bleach at end of every session when in use ( i have a premarked cup, just measure and pour it in). refill every 3 months.

    Now if I get tired of the bleach additions (which may happen when it's too cold to be using the pool) I may go to using a floater with stabilized chlorine, so i don't have to manually add chlorine every couple of days (only when I use it).
    Hi Harley! Well I just checked my last bill for water and it was $32.38 for 8,228 gallons. At that rate, 650 gallons would cost me $2.50, so not a huge cost but still the hassle of draining and having to restabilize is not that worth it to me. I'd just as soon only change water ever other month or so. Also, you have to factor in the cost of heating that water should you even want it in the low 90's as far as temperature. I have granulated stabilizer in the HtH Brand from Wal-Mart.

  14. Back To Top    #14
    linen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
    Posts
    8,649

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Bimmer
    I have granulated stabilizer in the HtH Brand from Wal-Mart.
    I would guess that is cal-hypo, not dichlor, but check the label and post. If you are going to use the approach in the thread I linked above, you will want dichlor to start, then bleach after you cya level is up.

    If you are having trouble keeping FC in the water and the water clear, do the decontamination process.
    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.

  15. Back To Top    #15

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    Quote Originally Posted by Bimmer
    I have granulated stabilizer in the HtH Brand from Wal-Mart.
    I would guess that is cal-hypo, not dichlor, but check the label and post. If you are going to use the approach in the thread I linked above, you will want dichlor to start, then bleach after you cya level is up.

    If you are having trouble keeping FC in the water and the water clear, do the decontamination process.
    Interestingly enough it is Cal-Hypo but the label reads 47.6% and 52.4% OTHER INGREDIENTS!
    Wow! It says Minimum Active Chlorine is 45%. But still, that leaves a whole lot of "other ingredients" undisclosed.

    Here's what it says about it on the product page.
    http://www.poolgeek.com/HTH-Spa-Chlo...zer-P3883.aspx

    Is there a link to this decontamination process? Should I wait until I drain the tank? Being as warm as it is outside, I tend to overfill the ht frequently with cool water. Not on purpose but usually by letting the time get away from me that I'm topping off the tub. Also sounds like I need to get some Dichlor first as well.

  16. Back To Top    #16
    linen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
    Posts
    8,649

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    The link to the decontamination process is up above in one of my posts.
    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.

  17. Back To Top    #17

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    The link to the decontamination process is up above in one of my posts.
    Okay. Found it. Cool!

  18. Back To Top    #18

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

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    In particular, a new hot tub will often have biofilm in the piping due to wet-testing of the spa without proper drying out of the pipes. Between that and leftover grease, you really need to decontaminate the spa and I would recommend using SeaKlear Spa System Flush. You only need to do this once and then after that just maintaining the proper chlorine level will be all that is needed.

    It also sounds like you are starting out using bleach immediately which for normal sanitation is a no-no (for initial decontamination it's OK). You need to have Cyanuric Acid (CYA) in the water or else the chlorine will be too strong, will outgas and deplete too quickly, will degrade hot tub covers faster, will be too harsh on swimsuits and skin, will smell more, etc. For spas an easy way to increase the CYA level is to initially use Dichlor until you build up the CYA level to around 30-40 ppm and then switch to using 6% bleach. Read Using Chlorine in a Spa for more details.

    If you use the spa regularly (every day or two) then your goal is to add sufficient oxidizer after your soak to handle your bather waste and end up with 1-2 ppm FC right before your next soak. If you don't have an ozonator, then every person-hour of soaking requires around 3-1/2 teaspoons of Dichlor or 5 fluid ounces of 6% bleach or 7 teaspoons of non-chlorine shock (MPS) where the latter is usually used only in Nature2 systems with MPS. If you have an ozonator, you may find you only need to use around half these amounts. To maintain the chlorine level if you are not soaking every day or two, you need to add chlorine in between soaks. The chlorine loss rate without an ozonator (after handling bather-load) is around 25% of the FC level while with an ozonator it's usually around 50% of the FC level per day.

    Without the FAS-DPD chlorine test, you are only approximating your chlorine level and can't measure high levels. This is one of those situations where you literally get what you pay for.
    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"

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    In particular, a new hot tub will often have biofilm in the piping due to wet-testing of the spa without proper drying out of the pipes. Between that and leftover grease, you really need to decontaminate the spa and I would recommend using SeaKlear Spa System Flush. You only need to do this once and then after that just maintaining the proper chlorine level will be all that is needed.

    It also sounds like you are starting out using bleach immediately which for normal sanitation is a no-no (for initial decontamination it's OK). You need to have Cyanuric Acid (CYA) in the water or else the chlorine will be too strong, will outgas and deplete too quickly, will degrade hot tub covers faster, will be too harsh on swimsuits and skin, will smell more, etc. For spas an easy way to increase the CYA level is to initially use Dichlor until you build up the CYA level to around 30-40 ppm and then switch to using 6% bleach. Read Using Chlorine in a Spa for more details.

    If you use the spa regularly (every day or two) then your goal is to add sufficient oxidizer after your soak to handle your bather waste and end up with 1-2 ppm FC right before your next soak. If you don't have an ozonator, then every person-hour of soaking requires around 3-1/2 teaspoons of Dichlor or 5 fluid ounces of 6% bleach or 7 teaspoons of non-chlorine shock (MPS) where the latter is usually used only in Nature2 systems with MPS. If you have an ozonator, you may find you only need to use around half these amounts. To maintain the chlorine level if you are not soaking every day or two, you need to add chlorine in between soaks. The chlorine loss rate without an ozonator (after handling bather-load) is around 25% of the FC level while with an ozonator it's usually around 50% of the FC level per day.

    Without the FAS-DPD chlorine test, you are only approximating your chlorine level and can't measure high levels. This is one of those situations where you literally get what you pay for.
    I think I understand all of what you just talked about. Hopefully I can get the proper test kit, thew dichlor and the flush kit within the next week or so, then drain the spa and start from fresh using the instrutions from Linen and You.

    On a side note, are you from San Rafael? I grew up in Santa Rosa but my step-mom's mother lived in San Rafael and we used to go visit her several times a month. She lived somewhere across the street from a power sub-station and I remember I used to walk a few blocks to this HUGE indoor slot-car track and spend hours watching people run their cars. Great memories! Of course this was back in the early to mid-60's.

  20. Back To Top    #20

    Re: I Think My Approach To This Is All Wrong

    I guess my IMMEDIATE question is this. Am I putting myself, my wife or the spa at risk by using the spa in its present state?

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •