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Thread: Mixing Stabilized/Unstabilized Chlorines

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    Mixing Stabilized/Unstabilized Chlorines

    Hi all--first time poster here. I've found the site and discussions tremendously helpful!

    I moved into the current house with my first pool two years ago. The previous owner "taught" me what to do with the pool, and basically this consisted of testing only total chlorine and PH, adding tabs, backwashing, and using a copper algaecide when algae bloomed.

    It wasn't until I started wondering why my pool water always had a slight greenish tint that I went to the internet and discovered I'd been doing things wrong (thank you TFP!)! I bought a the big test kit, and found that not only was my pool out of balance, but the CYA levels were off the chart (400+) due to my uneducated use of dichlor for shocking over the past two years. A purplish stain had appeared in the past two weeks on the sides of the pool and on the kreepy krauly. I thought it was metals reacting to the cyanuric acid. The pool guy I called to help me drain the pool told me it was because I had mixed dichlor with some other type of chlorine (maybe he meant cal-hypo?). From what I've read, I think I'm right and he's wrong, but I'm not sure. I can't seem to find anything about the staining dangers of mixing kinds of chlorines. I drained the pool last night, and am starting over today. I'm currently filling the pool and laying out my plan.

    Here are my two questions right now (there will be more):
    (1) I do not want to have the CYA problem again. But if I switch to using Sodium Hydrochloride only (liquid bleach) for chlorine does that mean I need to also switch to unstabilized tabs and adding CYA manually? Or can I use the liquid bleach while maintaining CYA levels with tri-chlor tabs (using the tri-chlor only when CYA levels are low--which they will be now hopefully!).

    That is, is the CYA that dichlor and trichlor release basically the same as adding CYA directly?

    (2) I'm expecting to still be sleuthing out whether my clear teal-green pool is due to the pebbletec, algae, or metals. I'm going to be using a sequestrant this time around (probably Jack's blue stuff, have to get it today). I will not be using copper algaecide ever again. Any advice? I noticed earlier this year that my fill water line, if it hadn't been used in awhile, came out brown at first. I'm pretty sure this means rust in the pipes, so I'm not using that line any more (even though it is now super inconvenient to track a hose out to the pool).

    When the pool is filled, I will post my first test results.

    Thank you!
    Tucson, AZ, ~20k gal., IG pebble, sand filter, pentair variable pump

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Mixing Stabilized/Unstabilized Chlorines

    Quote Originally Posted by TiggySlim
    (1) I do not want to have the CYA problem again. But if I switch to using Sodium Hydrochloride only (liquid bleach) for chlorine does that mean I need to also switch to unstabilized tabs and adding CYA manually? Or can I use the liquid bleach while maintaining CYA levels with tri-chlor tabs (using the tri-chlor only when CYA levels are low--which they will be now hopefully!).

    That is, is the CYA that dichlor and trichlor release basically the same as adding CYA directly?
    Welcome to TFP!

    There are no tabs you can switch to that don't have CYA.

    You can use trichlor when you need CYA and supplement with bleach if you need more chlorine. Once your CYA gets where you need it, you'll need to stop using the tabs. Or you can use bleach only and add CYA directly.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

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    Casey's Avatar
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    Re: Mixing Stabilized/Unstabilized Chlorines

    Quote Originally Posted by TiggySlim
    Here are my two questions right now (there will be more):
    (1) I do not want to have the CYA problem again. But if I switch to using Sodium Hydrochloride only (liquid bleach) for chlorine does that mean I need to also switch to unstabilized tabs and adding CYA manually? Or can I use the liquid bleach while maintaining CYA levels with tri-chlor tabs (using the tri-chlor only when CYA levels are low--which they will be now hopefully!).

    That is, is the CYA that dichlor and trichlor release basically the same as adding CYA directly?

    (2) I'm expecting to still be sleuthing out whether my clear teal-green pool is due to the pebbletec, algae, or metals. I'm going to be using a sequestrant this time around (probably Jack's blue stuff, have to get it today). I will not be using copper algaecide ever again. Any advice? I noticed earlier this year that my fill water line, if it hadn't been used in awhile, came out brown at first. I'm pretty sure this means rust in the pipes, so I'm not using that line any more (even though it is now super inconvenient to track a hose out to the pool).

    CYA, Dichlor and Trichlor are the same. The Dichlor and Trichlor have chlorine. The CYA powder is just CYA.

    Dosing with bleach daily is your best bet once you get your CYA to a more reasonable 50ppm. 60-70 for SWG.

    Leave the tabs for vacations. That's all they're good for.
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

    24' Sharkline Venture De Filter

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    Re: Mixing Stabilized/Unstabilized Chlorines

    Thanks for the reply! This helps ease my mind. . .

    The next question is about my purple creepy crawler--I'll post it as a new topic with a picture.
    Tucson, AZ, ~20k gal., IG pebble, sand filter, pentair variable pump

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