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Thread: Cellulose Fiber

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    Cellulose Fiber

    Hello,

    Brand New to this site, so I apologize if I'm asking questions about something that has already been discussed. Unfortunately, I can't find a way to search this board for a particular topic.

    Anyway, I have been using Cellulose Fiber in my DE filter grids this summer. The Fiber works great but my issue is with back-washing. When I backwash with DE and even the first few times with Cellulose Fiber I could see the material back-washing through the glass viewer on the system. For some reason I don't see anything being discharged now and actually had to completely take the filter apart and spray the filter grids (I do this twice a year regardless of issues), and have continued to have to do so each time it needs back-washing. The Cellulose Fiber was caked on thick (looked like wet cardboard) and fell off in chunks. Trying to figure out if my system is not back-washing properly (water is flowing out as normal when back-washing), or if the shock I use is causing some kind of reaction that makes the Cellulose Fiber stick to hard to the grid. I use a common vinyl liner safe shock that I buy at a reputable pool store and I have been using the correct conversion of Cellulose Fiber from DE. I have a 20' x 40' in-ground 35,000 gallon pool.

    Thanks

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Cellulose Fiber

    The search box is way up in the right corner, next to where you log out.

    I use fiberclear, and it rinses better than DE does for me.

    Have you used any algaecides, or floc, or clarifiers? Floc and clarifiers in particular are designed to bind particles together.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
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    BoDarville's Avatar
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    Re: Cellulose Fiber

    DrugRep:

    Welcome to TFP

    I use cellulose fiber as an aid to my sand filter, mainly for that little bit of extra clarity that is apparent at night under the lights. Even though I keep my pool operational year-round, I suspend using the product during the off-season mainly to save on product since no one is swimming then and we rarely have the pool light on. Either way, the backwash process is the same for me. When I am using the product, it flushes out along with the dirt whenever I backwash, which is expected. After backwashing, I need to recharge the filter with fresh cellulose fiber.

    As Richard pointed out, floc and clarifiers bind particles together which could result in the cellulose fiber sticking to the grid. Another possibility is suntan oils/lotions, especially after a large pool party.

    Not sure what kind of "shock" you are using. "Shock" as branded by pool chemical companies and sold through retail outlets is really chlorine packaged in an alternative way. With that said, none of the "shock"-labeled products that I am familiar with would contribute to the cellulose fiber sticking to the grids. Nevertheless, since you mentioned you are using a "vinyl liner safe shock", I'm wondering if it might have added ingredients aside from the chlorine. Check the label to be sure.

    BTW, if you stay with us on TFP, you will learn that shock is a process and not a product. Check out the The Shock Process link in my signature for more info.
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    Re: Cellulose Fiber

    Thanks Richard320 and BoDarville,

    The shock I was using was a Calcium Hypochlorite, but was told it would shorten the life of my inground vinyl liner. I was told the liner will absorb the calcium and harden it until it becomes brittle. I have switched to a Sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione, which is supposed to do the same job without the damage. I did add a 3 month algaecide to my pool in the spring, but I live in an area where water temp gets to 90 plus and algae is a real problem. I haven't used a clarifier, nor does the shock contain any, as far as I can see. I was told to remove the DE grids and clean them with TSP and then soak in a a muratic acid bath for 30 min. Seems like a lot of dangerous chemicals to use. I have used the TSP on the grids, but not every cleaning. I guess there may be a lot of protein on the grids that the acid wash is needed....??? Any feedback is helpful. Thanks

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Cellulose Fiber

    Quote Originally Posted by DrugRep
    Thanks Richard320 and BoDarville,

    The shock I was using was a Calcium Hypochlorite, but was told it would shorten the life of my inground vinyl liner. I was told the liner will absorb the calcium and harden it until it becomes brittle. I have switched to a Sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione, which is supposed to do the same job without the damage. I did add a 3 month algaecide to my pool in the spring, but I live in an area where water temp gets to 90 plus and algae is a real problem. I haven't used a clarifier, nor does the shock contain any, as far as I can see. I was told to remove the DE grids and clean them with TSP and then soak in a a muratic acid bath for 30 min. Seems like a lot of dangerous chemicals to use. I have used the TSP on the grids, but not every cleaning. I guess there may be a lot of protein on the grids that the acid wash is needed....??? Any feedback is helpful. Thanks
    You might actually have calcium scaling on the grids, if you're in a hard water area and added even more calcium via cal-hypo. Acid will clean it off.

    Yes, one needs to be careful with the acid. But it's not like you're handling sweating sticks of dynamite. Ever see that lime-away stuff to clean the shower tile? Also sold as CLR? Check out the active ingredients. Acids.

    Next concern, and it's a big one: trichlor shock will raise CYA levels. Fast. And the higher the CYA, the higher you need to maintain FC. Until you can't keep up. Then algae blooms and you can't kill it. And after the pool store has drained your wallet, they'll say you need to drain the pool, too.

    Which doesn't address the gooey fiberclear sticking to the grids. Since you've used no clarifiers, we get into speculation. Trichlor is acidic. Fiberclear is, ultimately, wood pulp. Maybe the pH was too low for too long and started dissolving it? I don't know.

    I do know that I have no problem with it and my chemistry has been balanced the entire time I've been using it. It does sort of imply a causal relationship, doesn't it?
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: Cellulose Fiber

    Thanks Richard320,

    I'll start by acid cleaning the grids, since that has not been done in quite some time. Maybe the calcium or protein build up is the problem. Question: If I can't use Calcium Hypo because it may damage the liner, and the Sodium Dichloro-s raises CYA too quickly, what is the solution for shocking the pool? We have considered a Saltwater system, but don't want to invest in that immediately.

    Thanks.

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    Re: Cellulose Fiber

    Bleach.

    At the top right, click Pool School, scroll down to "How to", and read "Shock your pool"
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Cellulose Fiber

    Quote Originally Posted by DrugRep
    Thanks Richard320,

    I'll start by acid cleaning the grids, since that has not been done in quite some time. Maybe the calcium or protein build up is the problem. Question: If I can't use Calcium Hypo because it may damage the liner, and the Sodium Dichloro-s raises CYA too quickly, what is the solution for shocking the pool? We have considered a Saltwater system, but don't want to invest in that immediately.

    Thanks.
    Sodium Hypochlorite. Bleach. Liquid Pool Chlorine. Liquid Shock. It's all the same chemical, just different concentrations.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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