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Thread: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

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    Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    I'm curious how often the people using ONLY liquid bleach for chlorination (TFPC method) have to add chlorine to their pools, and how much they have to add. In my case, during the summer months the Cl level drops VERY quickly -- so quickly that I don't understand how anyone could possibly use "only" liquid chlorine. It just seems like too much work, and a single missed day would put the Cl levels well below the minimum. I'd have to add Cl no less than once a day, and I'd probably have to add so much at a time that the levels would be annoyingly high in the morning, and on the low side by evening. Is this what people do?

    To combat this, I've always augmented my Cl with Tri-chlor tablets -- enough that I only have to add liquid Cl once or twice a week. Unfortunately, this means using enough Tri-chlor tablets that my CYA is always rising to frustratingly high levels, requiring me to drain and refill much more than I like.

    Is this just the nature of the beast, or am I missing something? I've thought about using a Salt Water Chlorine Generator, but I'm still on the fence about this due to fears with regard to the deck, landscaping and surrounding areas. One pool company told me that they are not allowed to drain salt water pools -- that if a pool using a SWCG needed draining for repairs, the homeowners would need to drain it before they arrived. Another area near me -- Santa Clarita -- banned all SW pools due to issues with salt in both groundwater and soil.

    I also considered the Liquidator, but there are very mixed reviews on this product, and at best is seems rather "fiddly" when it comes to adjusting it.

    Thanks for any feedback on this,

    Larry

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    I use strictly bleach. My CYA level is 40. I dose my pool once a day when the sun goes down. My target level FC is 7 and when I test in the evening it is usually at 4 - 4.5, depending on how sunny it was, water temp, and how many kids have been in the pool. I usually add 3 cups to a quart daily.
    When you were using just bleach what was your CYA level and what FC level were you targeting ?
    Large FC loss's can point to organics in the water.
    Jeff
    24'x54" AG Morada RTR (by wilbar) 13'500 gal. Hayward Powerflo Matrix 1hp 2 speed. Hayward Perflex EC65 DE filter.

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    During the summer, about a quart of 12.5% chlorine per day for my 16000 gallon pool. If we're having a bunch of people over, I'll add more before they get in and again when we're done. I will put a few trichlor pucks in a floater if I'm out of town for more than two days.

    Once you get used to the pool, it all becomes very predictable. You'll know before you test what you'll see and how much you'll need, and you can get away with skipping the test now and then and just dump in the usual amount. Myself? I'm out on the patio several times a day smoking anyway, so it's no big deal to carry the jug over with my free hand and dump it in.
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    Re: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    2ppm per day, or 46 oz. of 12.5% per day for me. Usually I dose every other day. If bather load goes up, I dose a little more often or put in a little more and run the FC a little higher.

    Have you run an OCLT to rule out a low level bloom? How does your water look? What do your test results look like?
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
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    Re: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    Quote Originally Posted by pwrstrk View Post
    When you were using just bleach what was your CYA level and what FC level were you targeting ?
    Large FC loss's can point to organics in the water.
    I never used just bleach other then when I wanted shock levels to drop, but it can lose about 50% in a single day during the summer. My CYA has varied from 50's to over 100, so my target FC has varied as well. When my CYA is around 70-ish, my target FC is around 8. I generally try to follow the Chlorine/CYA charts.

    I honestly don't think I have any extra organics in the pool. I think that with the temps around 100 degrees or higher and full sun all day, it just really hits the Cl hard.

    I guess I'm just not as willing or able as others to test and address my pool chemistry every day.

    Thanks for all the responses here.

    Larry

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    Re: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Smykowski View Post
    Have you run an OCLT to rule out a low level bloom? How does your water look? What do your test results look like?
    Yes -- once in a while I do the overnight test just to make sure nothing is out of whack. In the 3 or so years I've been here, the overnight tests have always showed only negligible FC losses. The water itself looks really good -- I'd actually say better than average -- and I've never had an algae bloom. I have seen some algae growing on the shadier sections of walls before, but this was primarily before I maintained FC levels based on the FC/CYA chart. I believe that as long as I've maintained the levels the chart recommends, I haven't seen any algae. The tricky part is to maintain these levels when I get busy.

    In other words, things seem to be generally working fairly well, but I'd really like to make the maintenance a bit easier.

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    BoDarville's Avatar
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    Re: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    I experience an FC loss of about 40-50% on a typical sunny summer day and my pool is in full sun for much of the day.

    Another option you may want to consider is installing a peristaltic pump to distribute the liquid chlorine.

    IMHO, I think the corrosion concerns of a SWG are largely overblown. I know several people that have had a SWG for decades and have not experienced any ill-effects to their decking or surrounding landscape. Also, keep in mind that non-SWG pools have some salt in them. In my case, the salt level hovers between 1/3 and 1/2 that of a typical salt pool. Therefore, someone who is considering converting a manually-chlorinated pool to a salt pool will have an incremental increase in salt levels - they would not be starting from a zero salt level.
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    Smykowski's Avatar
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    Re: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    As long as you are religious about the FC/CYA relationship, you can run your CYA a bit higher. Also, if you have a solar cover, you can leave that on during the day. That will help block the UV rays and keep FC in your pool.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
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    Re: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    Quote Originally Posted by lalittle View Post
    I never used just bleach other then when I wanted shock levels to drop, but it can lose about 50% in a single day during the summer. My CYA has varied from 50's to over 100, so my target FC has varied as well. When my CYA is around 70-ish, my target FC is around 8. I generally try to follow the Chlorine/CYA charts.

    I honestly don't think I have any extra organics in the pool. I think that with the temps around 100 degrees or higher and full sun all day, it just really hits the Cl hard.

    I guess I'm just not as willing or able as others to test and address my pool chemistry every day.

    Thanks for all the responses here.

    Larry
    Cya varied? ?? Over what period of time. What is it now? How/who tests it? How often is it tested? I suspect it is much higher. During the summer, I put as much as 96 ozs of 8.25% bleach in per day. The stock of 10% at my local home depot is what they had last year, and it was 6 mos old then.
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    Re: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    In the summer I test every other day. Typically I add a jug of 10% to add 4 ppm to the pool every other day. If there is NOT two jugs of liquid shock in the recycle bin, I probably have fallen down on my job of testing, or it is not summer yet. The hardest time is right now, when it is not yet summer so I am not in the groove of remembering to test but the pool is waking up and needing more chlorine than it does in winter.

    CYA does vary for me as well, but really I think it had to do with my dear Hubby leaving the refill valve on for some 3 or 4 or 8 hours.... hate to see that water wasted, running down the street. Sigh.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

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    Re: Liquid Chlorine only -- how much/often to others need to add it?

    Quote Originally Posted by timerguy View Post
    Cya varied? ?? Over what period of time. What is it now? How/who tests it? How often is it tested? I suspect it is much higher. During the summer, I put as much as 96 ozs of 8.25% bleach in per day. The stock of 10% at my local home depot is what they had last year, and it was 6 mos old then.
    When I say that the CYA varies, I mean that over time it keeps rising, at which point I drain/refill and knock it back down again. At it's height it's over 100, and a drain/refill brings it down to between 50 and 80. I'm not entirely sure what the time periods are -- I don't always drain/refill all at once, which makes it hard to get a feel for the timeline. In general, I'd say that it's at it's highest once a year, and I drop it back down between 1 and 3 times a year, typically in the spring/early summer. I do all the testing myself.

    It sounds like it's normal to have a 40-50% drop in Cl in one day, but it surprises me that people are okay with doing maintenance so often. I just don't like dealing with it that much, and I hate the idea that if something happens and I miss even one day, it could easily result in algae growth. The FC level just drops so fast when there are no pucks in the pool, and I hate to raise the FC level so high that I have headroom to spare.

    I see a lot of reports saying that SWCG's are not a problem, but I see and hear enough reports saying the opposite that I'm eternally on the fence about this. Some pool builders even recommend against them in my area, which means less install jobs for them.

    As usual, I just don't know what to do.

    Thanks again for the responses,

    Larry

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