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Thread: Mystery bleach - Do they even really make 1%?

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    watersplash's Avatar
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    Mystery bleach - Do they even really make 1%?

    Hello all,

    I've been reading and learning since I stumbled upon this forum. I'm currently using the 6% recommended bleach but I have paid $1.67 for 96 ounces jugs. Recently, I was truly excited to see an ad at Vallarta supermarket for .79 cents for Special Value Bleach - 33% more, equalling 128 ounces. When I get to the store there is no clue on the label as to what the concentration level is. Sigh, I go home and try to google some information and my husband calls the company listed, Unified Grocers. I come up empty and the company doesn't field calls on the weekend. Today, all they are able to tell my husband is that the MSDS reads... wait for it...
    1-6%! Really? What would be the use for a 1% bleach even for laundry?

    Just for fun, I put the different %'s in the pool calculator and to raise my FC from 3 to 5 could take anywhere from 27 ounces (6% formulation) to 161 ounces (1% formulation). I don't want to mess up our pool water experimenting with this mystery bleach but the sad state of our budget could really use the benefit of stocking up on 6% bleach at .79 a gallon!

    I guess my hope is that someone has encountered this bleach and might have tested the concentration level. However, I fear that still wouldn't guarantee that the one I want to purchase would have the same level. The lady manning the phones said something about different vendors supplying different product concentrations. ( BTW, we called Vallarta, as well, and they didn't know, either) Does anyone here have some not terribly complicated way of figuring out just how much bleach is in this product? Timely answers appreciated since sale ends tomorrow.

    Oh, while I have you I had a few more questions:

    The same exact brand bleach had different sizes available and one had small print in the back of the label that said it also added whiteners . Isn't that the purpose of the chlorine and what else could that include (or do to my pool)?

    Does the solar cover protect the water somewhat from chlorine loss due to the sun? (Do higher temperatures alone effect FC loss?)

    The manufacturer states that my pool ( 18'D, 48" H) has an approx. gal. capacity of 6450 and a max. water depth of 41.5". The pool calculator tells me my pool has 7600 gallons. Why the large difference and which number should I use for calculations when I use the pool calculator for adding chlorine and other chemicals?

    Thank you in advance for any help with my questions and I think you have a wonderful forum here.
    6450 gallons
    Cartridge filter
    Above ground round metal frame quick set - 18'Diameter, 4'High
    Polygroup SFS1000 filter system w/ F1000c pump and in-wall skimmer - 1075 GPH
    2nd year - re-assembled 5/30/13 and finish filling on 6/1/13

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Mystery bleach - Do they even really make 1%?

    1% and 3% bleach does exist, 1% is what normally gets sold on bid price contracts when the bidding agency does not specify percentage. (My family owns a janitorial supply company, you would be surprised how poorly government agencies do writing bid request for things like bleach and toilet tissue. (with toilet tissue they fail to specify width, roll length or how many plys much, so to be competitive everyone bids the cheapest narrowest, shortest roll stuff they can find)

    Ike
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Mystery bleach - Do they even really make 1%?

    Hi, welcome to TFP! You are usually better off sticking to name brand or store brand bleach. Bleach that is usually low priced is also low bleach concentration. If the percentage is not on the label I usually pass it by. A new wrinkle is the recent development of concentrated bleach that is supposed to be around 8% strength and comes in a smaller jug. As far as I know it is ok to use in the pool, just stick to unscented bleach.

    As for the size of your pool, if you measure the side wall it is 4' tall. Most of use don't fill our pools to the rim, so if the water is 6" below the rim, subtract 6" from 48". That leaves a depth of 3.5 feet. Plug that into the pool calculator along with the pool's stated diameter and you will get the correct gallons for your pool.
    TFP Moderator
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    watersplash's Avatar
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    Re: Mystery bleach - Do they even really make 1%?

    Thanks. Ike, that is eye opening! Goodness, it would be interesting to see a comparison photo of the teeny, tiniest roll of tp against one of those Scott's double rolls! I wonder how often you'd have to change the roll...

    Thank you for the welcome, zea3, It's nice to finally interact with you nice people after reading so many posts over the last week. That makes sense about the calculator for my size pool, thanks.

    Darn, I guess I have to pass up that "great" sale. I'll keep looking around and reading the labels.

    See 'ya all around the forum. I'll be here 'cause I've caught sparklypoolitis!
    6450 gallons
    Cartridge filter
    Above ground round metal frame quick set - 18'Diameter, 4'High
    Polygroup SFS1000 filter system w/ F1000c pump and in-wall skimmer - 1075 GPH
    2nd year - re-assembled 5/30/13 and finish filling on 6/1/13

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    Re: Mystery bleach - Do they even really make 1%?

    The other thing you need to be careful of with some off-brand and especially low % chlorine bleaches is that they often have a larger amount of excess lye relative to their bleach content. This means they will make the pH rise over time even accounting for the acidity of chlorine usage/consumption. So you'll likely need to use more acid than you otherwise would with, say, 6% Clorox Regular unscented.

    As for your solar cover, it may help reduce loss of chlorine from sunlight if the cover is more opaque or a darker blue. Technically, it's the UV that needs to get blocked, but reflecting blue may reflect/block some UV.

    If you put in 18 feet for diameter and 41.5/12 = 3.458 feet for depth in The Pool Calculator, you get 6600 gallons (a calculation with more precision gives 6583). That's not far off from what your manufacturer states. It looks like you put in 48" for depth in The Pool Calculator, but it wants to know your actual water depth, not the height of the walls, so that accounts for the difference.
    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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    watersplash's Avatar
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    Re: Mystery bleach - Do they even really make 1%?

    Chemgeek, thanks so much for the information and also addressing my question about the solar cover; it actually is a darker blue. Although, I'm not sure we'll use it too much. We got it secondhand and suspect that it contaminates the water. I might try to disinfect it somehow but it's already breaking down and sheds some plastic bubble pieces into the pool.

    Yes, the pool calculator's numbers now are inline with the manual specs, thanks.

    Oh, I do not need the extra ph rise from the mystery bleach. I hate handling the acid & I've only had to use it once, a couple of days ago.
    Additionally, I have a very energetic son who I jokingly call Ph-up, aka, AquaNinja.
    Between the vigorous splashing, the kicking, the spinning, the snorkeling, the water toy and Supersoaker action, the swim races and what he calls WATER WARS, I never need to aerate!
    6450 gallons
    Cartridge filter
    Above ground round metal frame quick set - 18'Diameter, 4'High
    Polygroup SFS1000 filter system w/ F1000c pump and in-wall skimmer - 1075 GPH
    2nd year - re-assembled 5/30/13 and finish filling on 6/1/13

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