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Thread: Which Salt To Buy??? Table Salt??

  1. #1
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    Which Salt To Buy??? Table Salt??

    I've read a bit on this SWG forum.....and have seen what alot of you are posting about which salt to buy......but I had a more specific question....

    What about Morton's Table Salt? (Not ionized....just regular)
    I've read here on one, maybe two, threads about how pretty much any salt could be used.....but before I read all this, a friend had suggested to me to buy from Sam's Club the bags of Mortons Table Salt....food grade salt.
    So, I did. I bought a few 25lb bags at $1.38/each.

    I put 2 bags (that's 25lb X 2) into my 5k gal pool.

    I did neglect to buy salt test strips....so that's why I only put the 2 bags in vs the recommended 125lb that the SWG manual suggested for my pool. I am going out first thing tomorrow am to get some from my local pool store to check the salt level before adding more salt or starting the SWG.

    Anyway......my question is.......does the water always look a bit cloudy immediately after putting salt in? Currently it appears a bit cloudy. I put it in about 6pm.....and as the manual suggests, I am running the filter for 24hrs before turning on the SWG.

    I will accept any suggestions/positive critisim..........I realize we all make mistakes......

    I just want a happy pool w/ as little maint. as possible!!
    TIA!!
    ~Mel~
    15x36 Intex Frame Pool (04, 05, 06, & 07)
    16x48 Intex Frame Pool (2008- )
    Upgraded to 2000 gph Intex filter
    Just purchased an Intex SWG May 08

  2. #2
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    Any pure NaCl should be fine. Finer grained will dissolve faster, but otherwise it doesn't really matter.

    I've used salt from Lowe's, Home Depot, and the pool store. NaCl is NaCl though (assuming there is nothing else added).

    I've seen a bit of cloudiness when I add it right around the salt, but otherwise, no, I have not experienced cloudiness for long. Not much salt is likely to get filtered anyways, as it will probably either 1) sit on the pool floor or 2) dissolve, and hence not be filterable anyways.

    I just added another 100 lbs of salt to my pool to bring me from about 2900 to the low 3000's. It was very fine grained, and dissolved almost as fast as I put it in.

    Sometimes, salt can form a sort of dense NaCl sludgy water deep down in your pool, and it may not circulate well, so make sure you are getting good circulation. Stir stuff up with a brush or vacuum if you need to (don't vacuum up all your salt though).

  3. #3
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    Thank You very much, Matt.....
    This is finer grain salt......as it's table salt......which is why it was suggested to me, to dissolve quicker, thus not much cloudiness. Perhaps I informed was wrong......

    I added it earlier today....and now it's dark out....so I cannot say if it's still cloudy. Maybe I will wander out with a flashlight in a few......and check.

    I was just posting to see/make sure the Morton's Table Salt was OK. (o:
    ~Mel~
    15x36 Intex Frame Pool (04, 05, 06, & 07)
    16x48 Intex Frame Pool (2008- )
    Upgraded to 2000 gph Intex filter
    Just purchased an Intex SWG May 08

  4. #4
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    If it's just pure NaCl, then it's fine. NaCl is NaCl.

    Different sizes make it dissolve faster or slower, and prices can vary wildly ($4 at Lowe's here, $12 at the local pool store...)

    You can also brush it around to help it dissolve, although that might scratch some finishes as it is abrasive. I doubt you'd see it through the water, but I figured I'd mention it. I do brush mine to help it dissolve, especially if I use larger granules.

    I'm not sure exactly what effect iodized salt would have... Iodide ions do react with chloramines. Not sure if that's bad or good in a pool... anyways, to be safe, I'd avoid it.

    I'd just go to bed and check on it tomorrow. Good chance it will be all cleared up. It doesn't sound like you did anything wrong.

    Some salt test strips wouldn't hurt. I've never gone to the high end of the salt range, and that may or may not be why I've never had cloudiness. You can probably also bring it to a local pool store and have them test for salt.

  5. #5
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    Food grade table salt is not recommended to be used with a SWG because it is NOT pure salt but contains anti caking compounds. This could be responsible for the cloudiness. One of the common anti caking compound in table salt is yellow prussiate of soda which is an iron compound and can cause iron staining in the pool. Table salt also often contains sodium aluminosilicate and/or calcium silicate and may contain potassium iodide and glucose if it is iodized salt.
    Solar salt (used in water softeners) or water softener pellets that are at least 99.5% pure are what is recommended by the majority of SWG manufacturers along with the more expensive pool salt (which is usually just solar salt that has gone through a separate grinding step to produce a finer grain crystal.)

    Another salt to avoid is rock salt which has too many impurities to use with a SWG.

  6. #6
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    Interesting, thanks Waterbear. I stand by my statement that pure NaCl is pure NaCl... but if they are throwing in anti-caking agent... not good. That's good to know, as I was unaware they added anti-caking agents to salt. What does it say on the label for the salt you put in?

    I would guess that if that is the source of your problems, it will probably be possible to filter out... but I'm just guessing.

  7. #7
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    Thank You Matt.......I cannot tell as of right now (2am), so I will have to just goto bed and wait until tomorrow.
    I will get the test strips and then check...

    Waterbear,
    If that's not good salt, have I ruined the pool? I don't need to drain, do I? Will the cloudiness eventually go away if I finish with better salt??

    I will get the salt test tomorrow and report back with the results to see what I should do next.

    Thank y'all!!
    ~Mel~
    15x36 Intex Frame Pool (04, 05, 06, & 07)
    16x48 Intex Frame Pool (2008- )
    Upgraded to 2000 gph Intex filter
    Just purchased an Intex SWG May 08

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt
    Interesting, thanks Waterbear. I stand by my statement that pure NaCl is pure NaCl... but if they are throwing in anti-caking agent... not good. That's good to know, as I was unaware they added anti-caking agents to salt. What does it say on the label for the salt you put in?

    I would guess that if that is the source of your problems, it will probably be possible to filter out... but I'm just guessing.
    This is the link to Sams Club.....this is the exact bag/s I was advised to purchase -
    http://www.samsclub.com/shopping/naviga ... tem=181933

    It actually does not say on it the % it is.
    ~Mel~
    15x36 Intex Frame Pool (04, 05, 06, & 07)
    16x48 Intex Frame Pool (2008- )
    Upgraded to 2000 gph Intex filter
    Just purchased an Intex SWG May 08

  9. #9
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    Here is what they say in the description on the Sam's club link you gave (emphasis mine)
    Granulated, food grade sodium chloride. Free-flowing with an anticaking additive.

  10. #10
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    This is good to know. I haven't encountered anti-caking agents in my salt yet.

    You aren't the first to make the mistake... a quick google shows quite a few others.

  11. #11
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    Thank You very much for pointing that out......
    With that said......have I ruined the pool? Can I finish the adding of salt with better salt? Will the cloudiness go away? And what salt is the best to use?
    Thank You all VERY much for helping me.......
    ~Mel~
    15x36 Intex Frame Pool (04, 05, 06, & 07)
    16x48 Intex Frame Pool (2008- )
    Upgraded to 2000 gph Intex filter
    Just purchased an Intex SWG May 08

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt
    This is good to know. I haven't encountered anti-caking agents in my salt yet.

    You aren't the first to make the mistake... a quick google shows quite a few others.
    I did Google....and I couldn't find anything about table salt for pools......what did I miss??????
    I feel like such a ding-dong for following advice like that......
    Should have stuck with what y'all were posting here.......

    But what did the Google say??? Is it fixable??????
    TIA!!
    ~Mel~
    15x36 Intex Frame Pool (04, 05, 06, & 07)
    16x48 Intex Frame Pool (2008- )
    Upgraded to 2000 gph Intex filter
    Just purchased an Intex SWG May 08

  13. #13
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    I googled "salt" "pool" "anti-caking" and got a bunch of hits.

    As for what salt to add, basically, any old NaCl is fine, IF it's just NaCl. No iodine. No anti-caking agents. etc. Lowe's and Home Depot, as well as local pool stores, will sell "pool salt" (cheaper at the former 2).

    I have no direct experience with this problem, but my suspicion is that the anticaking agent can be filtered out. You may want to try a metal sequestrant to remove the iron and/or a clarifier (especially if you have a sand filter) to help remove the larger particles... but I'm not sure really... I'm just guessing. Waterbear may have more experience with this problem. I would wait for others' advice on the use of those chemicals in this case.

    I *highly* doubt you've ruined your pool. It's actually pretty hard to do that. I'd run your filter constantly and bump/backwash as necessary if the pressure rises. Running the pump should be safe at least, and potentially helpful.

  14. #14
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    Thanks Matt.....
    I googled mortons salt pool.....didn't add the anti-caking wording in my google........

    This is an above ground Intex Metal Frame pool......16'X48", and I upgraded to a 2000ph filter. It's running right now......been running since adding the salt. So no fancy filter (or sandfilter) to backwash or whatever......

    When I go tomorrow to get the saltwater tests, I will bring water to get tested and ask specifically for metals, yes? Either way, that can't hurt, right?
    ~Mel~
    15x36 Intex Frame Pool (04, 05, 06, & 07)
    16x48 Intex Frame Pool (2008- )
    Upgraded to 2000 gph Intex filter
    Just purchased an Intex SWG May 08

  15. #15
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    Is your filter a cartridge filter, if yes, it can be hosed off, but I don't know if that would help. I also don't know much about SWG. Waterbear suggested the water softener kind of salt pellets, I'm pretty sure you can get big bags of that stuff at Sams club and Wal-Mart too....read the label before you buy....but I know they come in bright yellow and bright blue bags, depending on the variety.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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  16. #16
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    Using table salt typically results in metal stains. If you don't get any staining then you are fine. But chances are that you will see some staining.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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  17. #17
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    Thank You all for your replies.....
    Just checked the pool, it's still cloudy.....
    Off to the poolstore in a few.....
    ~Mel~
    15x36 Intex Frame Pool (04, 05, 06, & 07)
    16x48 Intex Frame Pool (2008- )
    Upgraded to 2000 gph Intex filter
    Just purchased an Intex SWG May 08

  18. #18
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    Just a quick update....for those that have been replying to me.....and I thank you again for that.....

    I went to Leslie's.......he said my alk was way down, ph way way up.....No chlorine, which I knew.....and I had phosphates.......and calcium was way down......

    So I got everything to adjust.....but Leslie's didn't have salt test strips, they were out.....so I had to goto Pool Emporium.

    They agreed for the most part with everything Leslie's had to say......sold me the test strips and tested my salt.....which came back at 180. LOL
    So I bought the salt and test strips - everything else I got at Leslie's......came home and started working on clearing it all up.

    Leslie's and Pool Emporium tested for metals.....Leslie's told me it tested at 20%.....Pool Emporium said it was .20.....so they agreed on that. Gave me/sold me stuff to fix that. And they both agreed that though table salt isn't the best choice, it wasn't the worst choice, either. (Notice I said I bought pool store salt to finish getting my salt up.....LOL After adding that bag I got up to 2800, which is where both stores agreed I needed to be......)

    AND.....I started the SWG today......and from what I've been reading about people owning the Intex SWG......either it works perfectly or they have problems right off the bat with Error 91.....I got the green light and let it run for 4 hours. Yay!!

    I won't keep adding to this post.....but I will keep up with y'all on how it goes with the Intex, as I've seen others inquire about it. (o:

    Thanks Again......y'all are a great wealth of information!!
    ~Mel~
    15x36 Intex Frame Pool (04, 05, 06, & 07)
    16x48 Intex Frame Pool (2008- )
    Upgraded to 2000 gph Intex filter
    Just purchased an Intex SWG May 08

  19. #19
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    Re: Which Salt To Buy??? Table Salt??

    Great thread. I purchased 3 bags of the Morton's pool salt from Sammies today and poured two bags of it in my pool this afternoon. Label says it's 100% salt and sure enough, it dissolved in less than 5 minutes with me in the pool brushing it around. I'll pick up some test strips tomorrow to find out what concentration it's at but it did not cloud up at all. Just kind of vanished as it dissolved. And I can really tell a difference in the feel of the water and it's very nice. It's silkier if that's even a word.

    SyliGoose, how is that Intex SWG working out for you? I've ordered one and thought I'd get a start on getting the salinity up before it gets here.
    16' Intex Metal Frame AGP with vinyl liner, ~5100 Gal, 637R 1000 GPH & 633 2500 GPH pumps w/cartridge filters, Intex SWCG

  20. #20
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    Re: Which Salt To Buy??? Table Salt??

    I can't believe all the post about what kind of salt to use, it seems like there are a lot of post concerning this, but it still does not help, to add salt to a pool you use solar salt, its in a BLUE BAG. Mortons table salt has anti caking ingredients, as per Jasons post, it could leave stains. The blue bag of solar salt is $5.00 at most at Lowes. I am sorry to be ranting but I just have a hard time reading a post that gives clear recommendations and then someone coming right behind and doing the complete opposite and posting it as well

    This topic has been discussed numerous times, do a search

    Why would you add table salt if it can stain your pool???
    13,000 IG Plaster, 2hp whisperflo pump, 48 sq in pentair DE Filter, 1 skimmer, 2 eyeball outlets, 200 sq ft solar panels on second story, Auto Pilot SWG-36, Polaris ATV Cleaner

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