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Thread: Is Algaecide necessary?

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    Is Algaecide necessary?

    We have been pool owners for 2 years now and we've been pretty successful at keeping our pool clean and clear with regular testing, brushing, chlorinating (liquid chlorine), and PH balancing with muriatic acid.

    We will occasionally go to Leslie's to get a more comprehensive water test done to make sure we are on the right track and they ALWAYS tell us that we have phosphates in our water and that we need to buy "Pool Perfect." I always decline because I don't know what is IN that liquid. I don't put anything in my pool that can't be explained as to what it is and it's purpose. Plus, they charge an arm and a leg for the stuff and I won't pay their prices. Also, I have overheard them selling chemicals to people and not educating people.

    So, what is the general consensus when it comes to algaecide? Does algaecide "eat" the stuff that algae feeds off of? That's how Leslie's describes "Pool Perfect." I'm just not convinced I need to be dumping more stuff into my pool.

    We did purchase some skimmer basket nets/socks that are catching a lot of the fine debris so that should help too, right?

    We recently installed a new variable speed pump and it seems like our water is cleaner and clearer than ever, but the summer heat will be the true test. I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences on this too.
    Approx. 20,000 gallon In Ground pool/spa combo, Pebbletec Finish, Intelliflo 3HP Variable Speed Pump, Pentair Clean & Clear 420 Cartridge Filter., Intellitouch system, Hayward heater (and that's about all I know for now)

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    Smykowski's Avatar
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    I haven't used algaecide in over two years.

    Algaecide is for algae prevention. If you properly chlorinate the pool, it doesn't matter if algae spores end up in the water because the chlorine will kill it. Some people use it as extra insurance during closing, but like I said, for the last two years I haven't used it at all. Closed late, opened early, clear water, and I still had FC after 6 months under the cover.

    The only time I can think of where algaecide is necessary would be for the acid treatment for stains where you intentionally let your FC down to 0.
    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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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Is Algaecide necessary?

    Welcome to TFP !!
    Algaecide's are not necessary. Keeping your FC in range for your CYA level is the most important thing you can do to prevent algae from forming.
    No need to worry about phosphates either. They just want to sell you something.
    If your using one of our recommended test kits you won't get anymore accurate test results from Leslie's. Trust your own water testing. 😎
    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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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    Sounds like you are well ahead of most first time posters and generally are following what we teach ... Only add what the pool needs!!!

    The only thing I would suggest is investing in one of the Recommended Test Kits and stop getting your water tested at the pool store. There are countless threads here that demonstrate just how bad their testing is ... always trust your own test results.

    As Smykowski said, if you maintain adequate FC (which is a function of your CYA {most pool store employees do not understand this relationship}, see the FC/CYA Chart), then is does not matter how much algae food (phosphates) are in your water and there is no need for any algaecide either.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    Just as I thought! I'm so glad I asked. We live in Northern California so we don't "close" our pool for the winter, but we do still test during the winter and add what is needed. We do have a Taylor test kit and I test every day right now so I can get a handle on how much chlorine loss there is each day. I do get a little overwhelmed with the chemistry of it all so I like to keep it simple. We did just recently realize our pool had zero CYA and added it.

    Any advice on what to do to ensure our pool stays clear while we are on vacation for 10 days? I was planning on super chlorinating and then floating tablets while we are gone. I'm so paranoid of algae since we had a green pool when we bought our house. It's my obsession!

    Thanks again everyone!
    Approx. 20,000 gallon In Ground pool/spa combo, Pebbletec Finish, Intelliflo 3HP Variable Speed Pump, Pentair Clean & Clear 420 Cartridge Filter., Intellitouch system, Hayward heater (and that's about all I know for now)

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    Best you can do is raise the FC up to SLAM level, float some pucks (if your CYA is not too high already, which it does not sound like it is), and cover the pool if you can.

    Which kit do you have? The key to a good test kit is the FAS-DPD chlorine test which is only found in the K-2006 (or the TF-100 which is a better value if you did not already have a kit).
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    I did the FC to 10 and a floater full of trichlor before I went to England for a week and a half. Returned to a clear pool. Raise the water level before you go to allow for evaporation.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    My test kit only registers up to 5 ppm for chlorine...what is "SLAM" level and how much will do the trick? I was thinking about 3 gallons of chlorine...?

    THANK YOU for reminding me to raise the water level to allow for evaporation!
    Approx. 20,000 gallon In Ground pool/spa combo, Pebbletec Finish, Intelliflo 3HP Variable Speed Pump, Pentair Clean & Clear 420 Cartridge Filter., Intellitouch system, Hayward heater (and that's about all I know for now)

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    So, can you test for pH, TA, CH, and CYA as well as the TC? Maybe the K-2005?
    You can add the FAS-DPD chlorine test from here: FAS-DPD Chlorine Test

    SLAM level (or "shock" level) is a function of your CYA as seen in the FC/CYA Chart link I provided before.

    You should also be using PoolMath to calculate how much of each chemical you need to add to achieve a desired result.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    To test higher than 5 ppm, you need an FAS/DPD test found in the suggested kits in Pool School.

    Pool School will also teach you about the SLAM.

    Ask lot's of questions, we'll all help.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    So, can you test for pH, TA, CH, and CYA as well as the TC? Maybe the K-2005?
    You can add the FAS-DPD chlorine test from here: FAS-DPD Chlorine Test

    SLAM level (or "shock" level) is a function of your CYA as seen in the FC/CYA Chart link I provided before.

    You should also be using PoolMath to calculate how much of each chemical you need to add to achieve a desired result.
    I have the Taylor K-2005 Complete High Range Pool and Spa Water Test Kit. I think it's pretty comprehensive. I typically only test for chlorine and PH unless something seems off.

    I'm going to have to work on the CYA Chlorine relationship. I want to get the most out of my chemicals.

    Am I on the right track?
    Approx. 20,000 gallon In Ground pool/spa combo, Pebbletec Finish, Intelliflo 3HP Variable Speed Pump, Pentair Clean & Clear 420 Cartridge Filter., Intellitouch system, Hayward heater (and that's about all I know for now)

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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    I will look into adding that to my kit.

    I truly appreciate the help there is here and I try to tell others about this site. I was so overwhelmed with owning a pool at first until I came here. I also received alot of help from the folks at Pool Supply World. They have since been bought out by Leslie's so there is no local showroom to visit for help. PSW never sold me anything I didn't need. And their prices were about half of Leslie's.
    Approx. 20,000 gallon In Ground pool/spa combo, Pebbletec Finish, Intelliflo 3HP Variable Speed Pump, Pentair Clean & Clear 420 Cartridge Filter., Intellitouch system, Hayward heater (and that's about all I know for now)

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    WHAT!?!?!
    Is that the same as poolsupplyworld.com? Or a separate local business?

    We have a few people from psw.com that frequent the forum and I hope they were not bought out by Leslie's.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is Algaecide necessary?

    So that was a while ago ... actually now I am starting to think that it was brought up back then as well. Looks like PSW still runs independently though.

    Funny that the article says Leslie's weakness was their website ... if they had better prices and not just the same prices as in the stores, then they would likely have better web sales.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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