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Thread: Novice pool owner needs some advice for a cholrine free pool

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    Novice pool owner needs some advice for a cholrine free pool

    We have purchased last year a holiday house in south of France. It came with a swimming pool (10X5X1.5m) - 75m3. The swimming pool is covered by a dome. The water was nice and clear when we bought the house, but sometime later, to my horror it turned into a green swamp. Last year I had no idea how to take care of the pool. Still, before the winter I treated the pool with chlorine, algaecide and 50g of copper sulfate and I adjusted the Ph from 8.2 to 7.2. I closed the pool for the winter and left it half empty. In spring we found the water clear but the pool had a substantial green-black mud on the bottom. Ph was 8.4. Since I was told by a neighbor that the water is saturated we decided to empty the pool and start with clean tap water. I have installed an 110W UV sterilization lamp on the return line and I dissolved to sets of 20 bromine tablets in the skimmers. I added some algaecide and a 50g dose of copper sulfate. Now the swimming pool is covered (75%) by an opaque plastic cover and by the dome. The water was only 15 deg when we left. I left the pump +UV lamp operating 12h per day. Two months later the water is still nice and clear. My neighbor added another 10 bromine tablets in the skimmer and adjusted Ph to 7.2. I hope to find the swimming pool with clear water. Any advice for the up keeping of the swimming pool will be appreciated.

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Novice pool owner needs some advice for a cholrine free pool

    Welcome to the forum.

    I would advise you first to begin reading the ABC's in Pool School. Keeping a pool with UV and Copper Algaecides is not something you'll find much help with here. With some reading here, you can find out why. Keeping a Bromine pool is a little different than keeping a Chlorine pool too.
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Novice pool owner needs some advice for a cholrine free pool

    I would just like to second the suggestion of reading the pool school link in the upper right of this page, particularly the ABC's of pool chemistry article, as it will give us some common ground for discussion. Most of our members are from the U.S., but we do have a few Europeans, and I think you will find that in the U.S. the vast majority of pools are sanitized with Chlorine, but that in Europe non Chlorine sanitizers are far more common. I can't explain why, maybe it is climate related, maybe cultural, etc. I don't know much about Bromine pools, but we do have some members using it, in the U.S. Bromine is far more popular in hot tub maintenance than it is in swimming pools due to its greater resistance to heat. As to some of the the other points you bring up, you mention the use of a UV sterilizer, and copper sulfate. It is our general feeling that UV sterilizers are of limited benefit, particularly with outdoor pools, as they only treat the water passing through the UV cell, and do nothing to prevent things that might try to grow in the pool and cling to the sides, and that copper containing compounds should always be avoided as they tend to lead to staining, and turning blond hair green. Your situation is challenging though, since there is no one there to provide regular testing, and maintenance, which goes against most of what we teach for having a trouble free pool by regular testing and adjustment using only the chemicals that are needed. For your situation, I think I would generally suggest replacing the water to remove the copper, and Bromine, switching to a chlorine based system with an SWG (salt water chlorine generator), probably keep the UV sanitizer as a partial safety net, and hire someone to check on the pool, test the water and adjust the SWG as needed every week or two. That way you could have pool ready to swim, or nearly so when you are at your at your holiday house, and not a mess that needs several days of clean up.

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    Re: Novice pool owner needs some advice for a cholrine free pool

    Our granddaughters are allergic to chlorine, therefore the bromine is the obvious alternative. The SWG is not a viable option for us. The cooper sulfate is not only an algaecide but also a very potent fungicide. It might create unwanted discolorations at concentrations bigger than 1ppm. The amount that I have dissolved in the pool is less than 0.5ppm. Uv light is meant to sterilize the water, therefore reducing bromine demand. I understand that the bromine concentration is lowered by sunlight with unwanted consequences, therefore I covered the pool with a black thermal blanket. This is reducing the chances to get an algae bloom (no light - no algae ) as well as protecting the bromine from direct sunlight destruction. Still, the bromine will be depleted when the pool is in use, but that is OK since I can add some more. PH will be OK as well since I will install an automatic controller. I do not have a brominator yet, but I plan to install one. How do I measure the bromine concentration in the swimming pool? Please advice.

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    Re: Novice pool owner needs some advice for a cholrine free pool

    This summer we returned to our holiday home in south of France. We were pleased to find the swimming pool with clean water and only some algae at water line between the blanket and the pool wall and on top of the thermal blanket. Jasonlion corectly stated that UV lamp will sterilize only the water that passes through the filtration system and cannot do much for walls. Still the UV lamp kept the water clean and algae free. It was easy to remove the small amount of debris and the few algae patches at the waterline.
    http://s46.photobucket.com/user/tepe...c3ec7.jpg.html
    http://s46.photobucket.com/user/tepe...05647.jpg.html
    The swimming pool without thermal blanket:
    http://s46.photobucket.com/user/tepe...906bc.jpg.html
    The pool with the dome pushed on a side:
    http://s46.photobucket.com/user/tepe...e55c9.jpg.html
    My robot helper at work:
    http://s46.photobucket.com/user/tepe...5e065.jpg.html
    I used bromine tablets and mps to provide sanitation when my grandchildren were with us and sodium hypochlorite activator when no kids were present.
    I did establish a bromine bank, so I can say I use a three step method.
    I think that the UV lamp is a great addition to ANY swimming pool installation because it provides a solid backup. It is not too difficult to change the UV tubes every 2-3 years. I think that many people can avoid the battle with the green monster if they would install a UV lamp. My pool have been left without maintenance for two months, temperature 25-29oC and practically no chemical treatment. TFP is a great site. I could get all the information I need in order to understand what I need to do for my pool, even if I do not use the recommended method.
    Now the brominator and the automatic pH controller are installed and fully operational. I plan to comeback in September.
    South of France inground rectangular 17k pool - ruber membrane. Sliding dome, black thermal blanket covering 75% of the pool surface. Aqualux 3/4Hp pump, glass media sand filter, Zodillac robot, 110W UV-c lamp, Hayward brominator, Caliente 12kW heat pump.

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