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Thread: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbonate?

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    Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbonate?

    Ok, I'm a Newb here! So please go easy on me! My Pool guy just retired & I am attempting to do my pool myself. Went to ACE Hardware to get Water Tested. Test recommended putting 20 LBS. of Sodium Bicarbonate in. I went to Dollar Store & bought 20 LBS. of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda, put it in pool. Ran Pump for one day. Went back to ACE & got retested & it now still says I need 17 Pounds of Sodium Bicarbonate. Asked ACE Salesperson why & he said the Arm & Hammer product is not pure & concentrated enough & he pointed to a 20 LB. Bag he sold for $23. & told me this is what you have to use. Am I wrong? Or is this exactly the same product? My PH is 8, It also advised I add 6 LBs. Muriatic Acid. Thanks in advance. I know for a fact my old Pool guy was slacking off on the Chemicals due to me having a 20' X 40' Pool & him wanting to save money & just get away with doing the bare minimum.
    20' X 40' Rectangular Gunite Pool with Spa
    28,000 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Rainbow Chlorinator
    Penair Pump
    Polaris 280

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    Same product.

    Never seen MA reported as pounds

    Get yourself one of the recommended test kits and stop trusting the guy trying to sell you a $23 bag of "special" baking soda.
    Likely their testing is just inaccurate ... as we see on this forum time and time again.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    Welcome to tfp, dino1956

    As jbliz said, plain baking soda is sodium bicarbonate. What is your TA value? I would guess you do not need to add any baking soda.

    For ph, Muriatic is a good choice for lowering it, but you need to know your current TA and pool volume to help calculate the liquid volume.
    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.

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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    Thanks guys. Total Alkalinity is 116 at least by their (ACE Hardwares) Computerized Test.
    20' X 40' Rectangular Gunite Pool with Spa
    28,000 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Rainbow Chlorinator
    Penair Pump
    Polaris 280

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    What is your chlorine source? If it is bleach/liquid chlorine then do not add anymore baking soda, our recommendations are 70-90 ppm for TA. If you are using trichlor (or dichlor) as your primary chlorine source (which we generally don't recommend), then our recommended range is 100-120 ppm for TA, so even then I would not add any more baking soda to your pool.

    These number came from this pool school article. There is a lot of good reading in the pool school: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-school/
    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.

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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    Total Chlorine is 6.5
    Free Chlorine is 6.5
    I know these are High. My Pool Guy just Shocked It last Wednesday.

    PH 8
    Total Alkalinity 116
    Total Hardness 253

    I use Shock in a Bag Chlorine & 3 Tabs for my Chlorinator.
    It's a Large Pool
    20' X 40' & Spa 6ft. Deep End 3 Ft. Shallow End
    I figure it's about 27,000 Gallons.
    20' X 40' Rectangular Gunite Pool with Spa
    28,000 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Rainbow Chlorinator
    Penair Pump
    Polaris 280

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    Yeah, I probably would not add any baking soda, and just leave it where it is at. You might want to look at this pool school article: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-..._chlorine_pool

    What shape is your pool (rec, oval, etc.) and what surface (vinyl, plaster, fiberglass)?

    Quote Originally Posted by dino1956
    Total Chlorine is 6.5
    Free Chlorine is 6.5
    I know these are High. My Pool Guy just Shocked It last Wednesday.
    Do you know what your cyanuric acid (cya) level is? Depending on that, your 6.5 may not be too high.
    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.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    A FC of 6.5 is not that high ... the required amount is dependant on your CYA level: pool-school/chlorine_cya_chart_shock

    And given that you are using tablets, I am guessing your CYA could be VERY high.

    To reiterate:
    Read Pool School
    Order Test Kit
    Save Money
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    Rectangle shape.
    Gunite
    CYA 122
    20' X 40' Rectangular Gunite Pool with Spa
    28,000 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Rainbow Chlorinator
    Penair Pump
    Polaris 280

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    That CYA is way too high, but also totally not a trustworthy number as it came for a store testing ... read the 100s of cases on the forum where the CYA specifically was WAY off from pool store testing.

    For a CYA of 122, the MINIMUM you should ever let your FC get is 9 ppm to ensure no algae starting. BTW, once the FC > 10ppm (which you will have to be as 9 is the minimum) the pH test is no longer valid. Not to mention that the pool store FC test most likely does not actually go above 5 ppm, maybe 10ppm.

    New reiteration:
    Get a test kit
    Read Pool School
    Likely replace a lot of water to lower CYA
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    Judging from what I just read on link you posted, Liquid Chlorine is best. but I'm guessing it' more expensive. So is my Chlorinator doing more harm than good?
    20' X 40' Rectangular Gunite Pool with Spa
    28,000 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Rainbow Chlorinator
    Penair Pump
    Polaris 280

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    Actually if you look at the $/ppm of FC ... liquid chlorine (or just plain old bleach) usually ends up being the cheapest option.

    Using the pucks (trichlor) or the granular chlorine (dichlor) adds FC and CYA. The FC is consumed the CYA builts up to the point you are at ... way too high and then you have to replace water. So, yeah at this point the chlorinator is doing more harm than good.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    Jason,
    Thank you for all the help. I appreciate it!
    I will get a Test Kit soon & test it.
    But I would bet that my Pool guy kept the Chlorine high, because I have had problems with Green pool Algae in the not so distant past.
    I almost always have Algae growing by Stairs or Ladders. Should I throw some Algeacide 60 in?
    And I no longer trust the ACE Hardware store test, because it's asking for the same amount of Sodium Bicarbonate after I already put 20 LBs in. I always thought the chlorinator was a good thing, I guess, in my case no.
    20' X 40' Rectangular Gunite Pool with Spa
    28,000 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Rainbow Chlorinator
    Penair Pump
    Polaris 280

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Arm & Hammer Baking Soda the Same As Sodium Bicarbona

    There is no need for algaecide if you maintain the proper FC levels. Also, Algaecide will not remove algae it only attempts to help prevent it.

    Some people with short swim seasons and a lot of water replacement (either rain of for closing in the winter) can get buy with tablets. But, you have to understand the FC/CYA relationship and keep an eye on it and be sure the CYA does not get too high. If you keep the CYA normally low enough, then the chlorinator can be useful when going on vacations so that you maintain FC in the pool.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
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