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Thread: If you started using chlorine instead of bromine, eventually yo

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    If you started using chlorine instead of bromine, eventually yo

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    Welcome to TFP!

    Chlorine added to a bromine pool reactivates the bromine. If you stop adding bromine, eventually a long time later you will run out of bromine to be reactivated. Generally bromine needs to be added at least once per year, often twice a year.

    Bromine can be in two states, active sanitizing bromine, and inactive "banked" bromide. As long as you have enough bromine "in the bank" you can use chlorine to reactivate it. Bromide is lost very very slowly in normal usage. It can be lost more quickly if you pump or splash a lot of water out of the pool or when you backwash your filter (if your filter needs backwashing).
    Does this mean that if you started using chlorine instead of bromine, eventually your "banked" bromine will run out and you will have a chlorine pool?

    I have a bromine pool and want to convert it to chlorine. I'm getting confused on why you would need to drain the pool to fully convert from bromine to chlorine. If adding chlorine will reactivate your banked bromine and raise your bromine levels in the pool, doesn't this mean you are paying chlorine prices to sanitize with bromine? By continuing to use chlorine, it seems like the bromine will eventually disappear, but during the whole process you will either have bromine or chlorine sanitizing your pool. Why deal with draining it? I'm no chemist, so I may be missing something, but as long as a sanitizer is present and nothing is growing in the pool, it seems silly to deal with draining water just so you have 100% chlorine

    Sorry to bring up an old thread. This is the only thread I was able to find online that discusses the effects of converting bromine to chlorine without draining the pool. I'm not in a position to drain the pool and if this truly is required to convert from bromine to chlorine, I'll probably just keep using bromine.

    I have a 17x35 in-ground pool with a vinyl liner.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: If you started using chlorine instead of bromine, eventu

    Welcome to TFP!

    It is possible to convert to chlorine that way, though there are a variety of small challenges. It will also take years. The first challenge is that the required bromine level for straight bromine and the required chlorine level for straight chlorine are different, but the available tests don't distinguish between them, and for a long long time you are going to have both in the pool.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: If you started using chlorine instead of bromine, eventu

    What you wrote is correct. If you already have a bromine pool because you have bromide ions in it, then you can just dose with an oxidizer (including chlorine) which will oxidize bromide ion to bromine. Eventually the bromine will outgas or react with chemicals and get caught in the filter and backwashed, but this can be a very slow process. If you used bromine tabs, then the bromine may outgas more slowly so you'll have a bromine pool a lot longer.

    So it's true that if you don't mind having a bromine pool, then you can just use chlorine to activate bromide to bromine. Some people don't like the smell of bromine. Also, since the bromine is not protected from breakdown from sunlight, you may be using more oxidizer daily than if you had a chlorine pool. It's possible to add some CYA in the water which may protect lower depths from the sunlight, but it won't bind to the bromine itself so will not moderate its strength (the DMH found in bromine tabs might do so).
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    Re: If you started using chlorine instead of bromine, eventu

    If a bromine pool is drained completely and then refilled (without an EXTRAORDINARY precautions), will there be any residual bromine or can it then be converted to a chlorine pool upon fill-up.
    Dave S.
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: If you started using chlorine instead of bromine, eventu

    A straightforward full drain and refill is sufficient. You only need to get perhaps 90% to 95% of the bromine out to start treating the pool as a regular chlorine pool with no concern for any small remaining amounts of bromine. You do need to be more careful/through if you have a bromine allergy, but that is quite rare.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: If you started using chlorine instead of bromine, eventu

    I had a pool that was using bromine 1" tablets in a feeder. It took basically the entire season to get rid of the bromine. Using tri-chlor and cal-hypo to sanitize the pool. It wasn't fun as I was only there once a week and the chlorine gets converted to bromine which gets beat down by the sun so you end up with algae or using algaecides to help limp the pool along until it gets out by itself. When I would shock the pool with cal-hypo the usual white cloud would be green and then dissipate into the water. The tri-tabs helped but you still had to watch the CYA levels. So on sunny days it would be hard to keep sanitizer in the water. The pool has an older safety cover on it and it usually opens pretty green, I'm not positive but I think this helped the conversion go along over the winter months with the constant snowfalls and rain adding the the dilution of the remaining bromine.
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