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Thread: Any reason you can't have brass fixtures in your pool?

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    Any reason you can't have brass fixtures in your pool?

    I am in the middle of an acid wash and for the first time, saw the pool light clearly. It looks like it was salvaged from an old shipwreck! The chrome plating was almost gone and the copper plating under that was awful. So I removed the platings to find the parts are cast brass. It really cleaned up nicely and I'm liking the look much better than chrome, even.

    So what will happen if I put them back in - just plain brass? I could get them re-chromed but that's an additional cost and like I said, I really like the brass look more anyway.

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    Charlie_R's Avatar
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    Re: Any reason you can't have brass fixtures in your pool?

    Once brass gets its patina, it should be OK. Brass appears to be the metal of choice for harsh environments, from what I've seen.

    There may be others here that can elaborate in the positive or negative......
    15'x48" 4500 gallon Intex pool, buried 1.5 ft. Pac-Fab Dynamo 3/4 hp pump. Hayward S180T sand filter, bought used. Taylor K-2006 test kit. Rocket mass heater based wood fired pool heater.

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    Re: Any reason you can't have brass fixtures in your pool?

    See Brass and Chlorine (including my post at the end). Brass is copper and zinc so unless it's Admiralty brass or Naval brass (both have tin) to reduce dezincification (DZR brass is also resistant), you risk continuous corrosion.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

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    Charlie_R's Avatar
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    Re: Any reason you can't have brass fixtures in your pool?

    Thanks for that, Chem Geek!

    The installations I'd had contact with must have been the higher grades of brass, as they had shown no signs of corrosion after several years in service.
    15'x48" 4500 gallon Intex pool, buried 1.5 ft. Pac-Fab Dynamo 3/4 hp pump. Hayward S180T sand filter, bought used. Taylor K-2006 test kit. Rocket mass heater based wood fired pool heater.

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    Re: Any reason you can't have brass fixtures in your pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek View Post
    See Brass and Chlorine (including my post at the end). Brass is copper and zinc so unless it's Admiralty brass or Naval brass (both have tin) to reduce dezincification (DZR brass is also resistant), you risk continuous corrosion.
    Continuous like... one day it just won't be there anymore? Is there any substantial risk to the water chemistry from it? Any way to find out if it is either of those types that can stand up to it?

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    Re: Any reason you can't have brass fixtures in your pool?

    It won't fall apart in one day. It mostly just oxidizes the zinc so dissolves that part of the metal a zinc ions and what is left as copper falls apart as it no longer has the same structural integrity. Think of creating swiss cheese with a lot of pitting in the metal. If you take a paper clip, that is usually made of zinc, you'll see it corrode in a pool at our usual chlorine levels over a few days but it's mostly a dark patina that forms, but if you wait you see that slough off and it keeps corroding over weeks and depending on the size of the clip it may break apart over a month or so. A solid fixture, therefore, won't completely fall apart that quickly, but it's still getting corroded.

    There isn't much risk to the chemistry of the water except getting zinc ions in it and theoretically those can stain but you'd need a very high level of zinc ions before that happens (zinc is around 10,000 times more soluble than copper, for example).
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

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    Re: Any reason you can't have brass fixtures in your pool?

    Thanks!

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