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Thread: Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

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    Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

    I need some advice about how to maintain Cl levels all week long when we are only at the house where the pool is from Fri night till Sunday night.

    For the first 3 weeks, I ran the pump and filters and Cl feeder (Hayward) with Tri-Chlor 24/7. I am still working out how many Cl tabs to put in the feeder on Sunday night. This past Friday, the tabs were gone and the Cl was 0.5 when we got to the house. The water looks great. I added liquid bleach according to the Pool Calculator.

    If possible, I'd like to just run the pump/filter 12 hours per day on Monday-Fri. I tried that yesterday. In the morning, the free Cl was 5 and CC 0.5. At 6PM, after a hot day with the pool uncovered and some swimmers, the Cl was 0.5. I covered the pool overnight and ran the pump/feeder from 6P to 6A. This morning the free Cl is 5.

    Other numbers: pH 7.2, CYA 40. TA 140.

    I also plan to add a few ounces of polyquat-60 every week.

    So if I use bleach for the Cl source on the weekends (to reduce the CYA load) and run the pump/feeder with Tri-Chlor 12 hours per day with the pool covered Mon-Fri and the Cl cycles up and down from 5 to 0.5 every day, will that be OK? Are those values Cl high enough to prevent algae? Any other problems I'd run into.

    Thanks in advance for your advice and suggestions.
    Tom RI

    20,000 gal inground vinyl liner
    Jacuzzi pump and filter with Hayward feeder

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    tjwaggoner's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

    Speaking from the experience of a shift worker who works 12hr shifts and sometimes goes 4 days without so much as looking out the back door to see if the pool is still there I highly suggest a SWCG in your case. I test my water every week at a min and it always seems to hang right around the same numbers. Have a moderate swimmer load---my 2 brats and their friends mostly. The wife and I rarely have time for more than a quick cool off dive-in.
    I run my CYA about where yours is becuase I want the full sun to eat up some of the CL as my SWCG is oversized and Im too stubborn to put it on a timer. But in your case Id raise it to the rec level of around 80 and install a good SWCG and show up and enjoy your pool every weekend without messing with loading Cl.
    There will be plenty of more qualified expert opinions given by the guys around here.
    10,000gal fiberglass kidney
    3/4 hp whisperflo
    Sand dollar SD80
    IC40 SWCG
    (2) PAL2000 multi colored LED lights
    all 2" plumbing
    no water features/no spa
    TF Testkit

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    Re: Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom RI
    I also plan to add a few ounces of polyquat-60 every week.
    There are mixed opinions about the value of polyquat for preventing algal outgrowth. I, for one, believe it is counter-productive. Not only do Polyquats, and quaternery (EDTA) compound based products in general, rapidly deplete chlorine, they are in turn destroyed in the process. I think the notion that they persist in the water for any length of time is a fallacy.

    I've never used a tab chlorine feeder, but I suspect that you will find that it needs to be set at a higher feed rate to keep up with the increased chlorine demand and then find that it's over-dosing once the polyquat has depleted, possibly after a day or two. Conversely, if you set the feed rate at a time when the polyquat has all but depleted, you might find that upon adding the weekly 'maintenance dose', the chlorine feed rate can't keep up with demand and your levels will fall. Sure, you will probably see dead algae on the pool floor leading you believe it's 'working', when really the algae arose because there were periods where the chlorine level was low enough to permit growth.

    Largely conjecture, but personally I would drop the polyquat and focus on maintaining an adequate and steady chlorine level while you are away.
    "Inherited" Cornelius 18'x54" Round AGP (Steel walls), Hayward Pro Series 21" Sand Filter, ClubPro (Jacuzzi) 1HP single speed pump, Lumi-O Festiva steps, Toile-Soleil mesh leaf net/winter cover. That's about it.

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Re: Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

    tj, I'm sure you're right that a SWG is in my future. That would surely make all this easier. My current approach is to get through these next couple weeks till I can convince myself that I need to spend the money and do it.

    WorBro, I didn't know that polyquat had an effect on chlorine levels. The timing of when I add polyquat and then test would surely make it difficult to understand what's going on. Thanks for that tip.

    And thanks to you both for taking the time to respond on a Sunday.
    Tom RI

    20,000 gal inground vinyl liner
    Jacuzzi pump and filter with Hayward feeder

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom RI
    WorBro, I didn't know that polyquat had an effect on chlorine levels.
    http://www.poolforum.com/pf2/showthread ... 2d0ab00704

    In fact, EDTA, the 'quat' moiety of poly-quat, is widely used for de-chlorinating water sources and systems and is the active component in 'after swim' shampoos formulated to counter the effects of chlorine.

    Edit: In the course of searching for some other examples, I came across this thread:

    poly-quat-question-t939.html

    According to ChemGeek (4th post down) poly-quat is not completely destroyed by chlorine but is broken down into shorter chain polymers that are still effective. So maybe I'm wrong on the 'persistance' side, although I do have difficulty appreciating exactly what that 'effectiveness' is, and one assumes that in due course those smaller 'oligo-quat' fragments are ultimately degraded (? by chlorine). Still, the depletion of free chlorine after addition of polyquat is a well documented phenomenon.

    I dunno, why not experiment a little. Once you've got your 'away' chlorination routine established (others could better advise on that), one weekend, with the chlorinator still running, try adding polyquat and see what happens to the FC level over the course of the weekend. Don't adjust the chlorinator feed, and then, if you are there the following weekend, check the FC on arrival. Obviously, also monitor the pool at those times for any visible signs of algae, alive or dead.
    "Inherited" Cornelius 18'x54" Round AGP (Steel walls), Hayward Pro Series 21" Sand Filter, ClubPro (Jacuzzi) 1HP single speed pump, Lumi-O Festiva steps, Toile-Soleil mesh leaf net/winter cover. That's about it.

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Re: Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

    Instead of a SWCG why not consider a Chorine Feeder, via a Peristaltic Pump. The pump can deliver you the 'regular' dose of chlorine you need while you are away. And even though it is 250$, you will probably save money compared to a SWCG over time, and you can always adjust PH when you arrive on Friday.

    http://www.poolsupplyworld.com/poolsupp ... nAodoBch3A
    20x40, gunite/CL Sunstone Pearl finish, Jandy DE filter, 400K BTU Raypak NG heater, 1.5 hp Jandy Plus pump, Polaris 380 cleaner, Cover-Pools auto cover, Nature2 Fusion sanitizer, BioGuard 1200 Test Kit

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Re: Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

    Quote Originally Posted by WorBry
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom RI
    I also plan to add a few ounces of polyquat-60 every week.
    There are mixed opinions about the value of polyquat for preventing algal outgrowth. I, for one, believe it is counter-productive. Not only do Polyquats, and quaternery (EDTA) compound based products in general, rapidly deplete chlorine, they are in turn destroyed in the process. I think the notion that they persist in the water for any length of time is a fallacy.
    Well, it appears I was not entirely correct on several of these points:

    polyquat-algaecides-mode-of-action-t48173.html

    but I still think a little experimentation might be prudent.
    "Inherited" Cornelius 18'x54" Round AGP (Steel walls), Hayward Pro Series 21" Sand Filter, ClubPro (Jacuzzi) 1HP single speed pump, Lumi-O Festiva steps, Toile-Soleil mesh leaf net/winter cover. That's about it.

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Re: Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

    Wow WorBro. You've been busy! If I try the experiment you propose, I'll be sure to come back here and post the results.
    Thanks again.
    Tom RI

    20,000 gal inground vinyl liner
    Jacuzzi pump and filter with Hayward feeder

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: Keeping water balanced at a weekend house

    What else can a pool-lubber do when it's raining but hang around TFP
    "Inherited" Cornelius 18'x54" Round AGP (Steel walls), Hayward Pro Series 21" Sand Filter, ClubPro (Jacuzzi) 1HP single speed pump, Lumi-O Festiva steps, Toile-Soleil mesh leaf net/winter cover. That's about it.

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