I recently purchased a home with a 28k gallon pool. As a first time pool owner I had a lot of things to learn from the start, but one thing I wanted to do before the pool season started was to "convert to saltwater". I didn't really know what this meant at the time but I was told if I wouldn't be able to watch the pool constantly through the summer this was an easier way of maintaining the water balance. Since we are usually gone for several weeks during the summer I went to my pool store and made an appointment to get a Hayward/AquaRite system installed so we wouldn't come home to a green pool every time we left.
I was hesitant to add any chlorine to the pool while waiting for the pool guys to come out and put in the new SWCG because I didn't want the chlorine to interfere with the new saltwater system, so the pool sat for about two weeks (in retrospect I am quite lucky the pool didn't get cloudy or green). After the new cell and controller were installed the pool guys asked which type of salt I wanted to go with: plain salt, or "enhanced" salt. I was told if I used the enhanced salt it had all of the chemicals in it I needed and I wouldn't need to add anything else later, however if I went with the normal salt I would end up spending just as much money on all of the other chemicals required to balance the pool later in the summer. So I took their recommendation at went with BioGuard Mineral Springs Beginnings. I had to buy a lot of this stuff.. like 25-30 bags so it was quite expensive. I figured it was worth it though to prevent the headache of trying to keep things in balance later on.
After they put the salt in they said I would need to add Mineral Springs Renewal once a week to replenish lost salt and keep the ph down, so they sold me a case of that.
So, now that I was off and running with my saltwater pool, I got a LaMotte 2056 digital test kit (I am colorblind so this appeared to be the only option for me) and checked my levels. Here are the initial readings:
At this time I started researching water levels and tried to understand what condition my pool water was in (I know I was a little late to start. We were in the moving process before this and the pool got put on the back burner.) I discovered that my Chlorine levels were very low, the ph was quite low, and the CYA should be raised for the new SWCG. I started reading here on TFP about the BBB method and decided to give it a shot. I went to the store and got a few gallons of bleach, many boxes of Borax, 2 gallons of Muriatic acid, and two containers of "Stabilizer" from the pool store.
About a week later here are my readings:
So I got my Chlorine level up with the Bleach and now the SWCG is doing fine maintaining the Chlorine without adding anything else. My CYA isn't quite where I wanted it, but I'm giving it some more time to dissolve as I did just add the second container yesterday. So I'm feeling pretty good that I have things level but I am curious if anyone knows what exactly I bought from Mineral Springs? I feel like I wasted a lot of money on "Beginnings" and I have a case of "Renewal" that I don't even think I will open because I don't know what's in it. Does anyone have any experience with this product and can offer advice about the Renewal?