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Thread: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

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    Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    Is there a magic set of number by which we can keep our eyes open under water without risk of irritation? I have seen the recommended chemistry levels and the CYA chart. I also read tears have a pH of 6.5-7.6 with average of 7.0. My plaster pool is running pH:7.5 but since my CYA is mid-range at 50 ,I have to keep my FC at 6. Would it be worth my time and expense to lower the CYA so I can have a lower FC level to potentially reduce eye irritation?

    Thx.
    22,000 rectangular plaster. Hayward everything on a C1750 cartridge filter and a Liquidator.

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    Casey's Avatar
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    Re: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    How does your water look Chuzie? Crystal clear, Cloudy, Hazy?

    I am running 50ppm CYA, pH of 7.5, TA of 90 right now and I don't have eye irritation. I am suspecting you may have CC's.

    Do you have a TF100 or K2006? If so, please give a full set of test results, including CC test.
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    Re: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    CC=0

    I was going by the word of my kiddos so take that FWIW. They don't seem red or anything. Pool is crystal clear.
    More of a general question for future reference / planning.

    FC:6
    CC:0
    pH:7.6
    TA:85
    CH:350
    CYA:50
    Borates:50
    CSI:0.09
    Temp:85F
    22,000 rectangular plaster. Hayward everything on a C1750 cartridge filter and a Liquidator.

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    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
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    Re: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    CCs might be the culprit. Test for those. That's most likely cause of irritation in a pool.

    I thought that the pH of tears was 7.4 on average... The low level of your FC range would be the ideal level for minimal irritation, regardless of CYA you'll have about the same level of available chlorine if you're in the target range. Lowering CYA will not help reduce irritation. You could look at adding salt to the pool. 3000 - 5000 ppm of salt would approximate a lower level of saline solution. 0.3 to 1% (3000-10000 ppm) saline solution is what hospitals put in IVs and also what is in eye drops. If salt levels are lower than that, it may cause irritation just the same as if it were higher, like sea water. But, would be a minor factor compared to CCs.
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    Re: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    Here is my tear pH reference http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7469869

    So it is CC and pH that irritates eyes, correct?

    Good call on the salt.

    - - - Updated - - -

    BTW- What unit of measure does the Pool Math Calc use for salt? I'm not sure what to stick in there?
    22,000 rectangular plaster. Hayward everything on a C1750 cartridge filter and a Liquidator.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    PoolMath uses lbs for salt in US and English units, and kg in metric units.

    PH below 7.2 and CC above zero are the two most common causes of eye irritation. Some people are more sensitive than others, and are iffy about PH between 7.2 and 7.4 but that is rare. Also, there are different forms of CC that are difficult to distinguish, some of which are much more likely to cause eye irritation than others.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    I think it is true too that if you are in the pool for hours, your eyes will be irritated to some extent regardless how well you chemistry is maintained. Ask my kids Drives be nuts that they complain about their eyes hurting, but I am not sure there is anything that I can do better. Although pretty sure their eyes bother them less after hours in my pool than when they go visit their friends or grandparents house.
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    Re: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    I assume you are discussing eyes OPEN under water. I NEVER find that comfortable personally.

    My eyes don't "burn" but, without goggles, there is a degree of discomfort that I think would exist regardless of the pool chemistry.
    Dave S.
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    My kids complain well after they are out of the pool ... never while actively swimming. I think it just "dries" out their eyes or something.
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    Re: Ideal FC / TA / pH for zero eye irritation?

    May I assume my current salinity level is 0 if I haven't added any or do I need to go buy a tester before I calculate my salt requirement?

    Will salt adversely affect my borates?

    22,000 rectangular plaster. Hayward everything on a C1750 cartridge filter and a Liquidator.

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