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Thread: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

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    My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    ...and I was just wondering what could be the consequences of doing so.

    I've only had my pool for about a month, and I managed to stumble upon TFP almost immediately after it was opened. I've only been using the BBB method of care, and the TF-100 test kit supplemented with Borate test strips, and the Taylor Salt test kit. I bought the Taylor auto-mixer last week, and testing has become much quicker and easier since.

    I buy Clorox from Sam's Club for about $28 for roughing 8.5 gallons of 8.25% proof. I do this about every 1.5 weeks. I've also spent quite a bit on muriatic acid, baking soda, salt, CYA, and borax. I realize most of that cost is from first time startup, but I do find that I'm probably going to be spending about $100 per month on sanitizer and MA alone.

    I also run my filter for 6 - 8 hours per day, so I'm planning on a hit to the electric bill of about $100 per month from that as well.

    I live in NH. (Just to let everyone know my climate.)

    That's my story so far, and so far so good.

    Pros:
    Water looks amazing!
    Water feels amazing!
    No shock yet!
    No CC yet!
    No algae yet!
    I know pretty much exactly what my family and friends are swimming in.

    Cons:
    Seems kind of expensive.

    I told my coworker this yesterday, and he LOL'd at me. And he LOL'd hard.

    He said he drops a 3" trichlor tablet into his skimmer whenever the old dissolves, and shocks the pool every 2 weeks. He has a 20k gal steel wall IG pool with a liner. I'm guessing he drops maybe 5 tablets per week in his skimmer?? Not sure how many though. And by shocking the pool, I mean he throws in the equivalent of 4 -5 packs of HTH super shock n' swim, and calls it a day. He's had his pool for about 12 years, he said.

    Zero water testing ever.

    Pros:
    Seems like this might be significantly cheaper.
    Far less work.

    Cons:

    ???

    What cons are there to using a system like that? Absolutely no TC, pH, TA, CYA checking at all.

    I don't plan to use this system, but just wondering what you all think.
    26k Gal. 18' x 38' Gunite/White Plaster Roman style in-ground pool, straight Clorox bleach sanitizer, DE filter, TF-100 Test Kit, Taylor Salt Test Kit, Borate Drop test

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    wjr75's Avatar
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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    He doesn't have a system. He is flying by the seat of his pants! I LOL hard at him
    Inground 22k gallon gunite 15x31 main pool, 15x7 wading pool/sunning deck, hot tub/with overflow (9' octagon with limestone top) & slide NSWG, Aqua Blue Pebble Sheen
    Filter dual cartridge Sta-rite 450sq/ft, TF-100 Test Kit
    Heater Raypak 2100 400k btu cupro-nickel exchanger
    Auto pool cover, Polaris 280 auto pool cleaner, Jandy AqualinkRS8 Remote Control System

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    Well, his reply to me was literally, "I've had my pool for 12 years, and I know what I need to do."

    I really wanted to say to him, "You've had your pool for 12 years, and you really have no idea how to take care it."

    But how could I say that if he says he's had no major problems or algae outbreaks.

    I mean, my pool looks like I'm swimming in diamonds, or at the very least cubic zirconium, after using the BBB method and TFP testing, but from what I gather, his pool is a far cry from being a swamp.

    Is he really just swimming in a septic tank, and just doesn't realize it?
    26k Gal. 18' x 38' Gunite/White Plaster Roman style in-ground pool, straight Clorox bleach sanitizer, DE filter, TF-100 Test Kit, Taylor Salt Test Kit, Borate Drop test

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    pepsiholic's Avatar
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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    If he's not testing, how does he KNOW he doesn't have a problem? My water looked crystal clear but without testing, I never would have known I had an algae outbreak about to happen. Luckily I caught it in time. It was hidden inside my ladder, so it was not visible. How does he KNOW that his Ph and alkalinity are in the proper ranges? If they are not it can cause all sorts of problems, from dries out skin to equipment problems.

    Since finding this site, I guess I've become a pool snob, because I won't swim in anyone's pool, except my own...lol
    24 x 52 Round AG Outback Empire Pool 13,500 gal.
    1 HP Hayward Power-Flo pump w/Hayward 18" 150lb. sand filter
    TF-100 test kit & SpeedStir
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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    I think your bleach is a tad expensive. Did you try your local pool store for bleach? It's usually cheaper.
    12' Intex Metal Frame Pool, 1500 gallons, Intex 2800gph Sand filter/pump, AquaPro PRO1100 HP, K-2006 Test Kit

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    northrn's Avatar
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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    If it's working for him, just congratulate him and change the topic of conversation. LOL! I have a friend that is the same way but her definition of "clear" is certainly different than mine. So I just smile and stay in my own pool because I know what's in it and that it's actually clean. And I invite her and her family over to swim A LOT (so that I don't have to go swim in her pool ).
    27' AG 18K Gallons ~ Cartridge Filter ~ Pentair 1.5 HP Pump

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    I get my 8.25% bleach at either Home Depot or Walmart. It's $2.98/gallon down here in Houston. Pool water is crystal clear.
    28,000 gallon salt water pool
    DE Filter
    Inground plaster construction
    1-1/4 hp pump with 1hp booster pump

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    pepsiholic's Avatar
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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    Yes, start up costs will be a little high. You seem to have a fairly big pool so you costs will be a little higher. I spend about $25-$40 a month in bleach. Depending on where and if I can find it on sale or cheaper. My pool is about half the size of yours. All my other levels stay about the same all season, so no extra cost. I don't use salt or borates. My pool store's chlorine is way more expensive. They want $5.99 a gallon for 12.5. I can find it cheaper at Ollie's sometimes for $2.99/gallon. Other than that I just stick with plain old Equate brand bleach.
    24 x 52 Round AG Outback Empire Pool 13,500 gal.
    1 HP Hayward Power-Flo pump w/Hayward 18" 150lb. sand filter
    TF-100 test kit & SpeedStir
    Wanda the Whale Vacuum

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    My pool store charges CDN$5.99 for 10L of 13%.
    12' Intex Metal Frame Pool, 1500 gallons, Intex 2800gph Sand filter/pump, AquaPro PRO1100 HP, K-2006 Test Kit

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    I also run my filter for 6 - 8 hours per day, so I'm planning on a hit to the electric bill of about $100 per month from that as well.
    Your electric rate would have to be almost 42 cents per KWH to increase your bill $100 unless you have a huge pump. With typical rates you'll see less than a $40 increase.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    If he has a sand filter then he is replacing water whenever he backwashes a couple of times. That probably keeps the CYA from getting too high from the tabs. Since he has a vinyl liner it will not be as sensitive to all the calcium he is dumping in his pool with the massive amounts of cal-hypo he is using every couple of weeks, and the tabs will keep his pH low enough to prevent calcium scale from forming. He is getting by on dumb luck and nothing else. TFP is full of threads by folks who used his exact same methods and ended up with a nasty mess!

    If you ever get a chance to look at his pool it will likely have a wrinkled liner and dull looking water. It is also possible that it goes green over the winter and he drains and refills to clean it up every year, so the CYA doesn't have a chance to get outrageous during the season.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    I might suggest taking a look at the article in the Pool School about determining pump run times. You may be able to trim a little off the pump run time per day.

    I get muratic acid at Lowes in the paint section. Blue bottle is the good stuff for $6.99.

    Bleach form WalMart, $2.99 a 121 oz bottle.

    Keep track of your actual spending because I think you will find it is a lot less than $100 per month.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    The thread is drifting a bit but the overriding theme seems to be, " How can I convince my friend to do it my way?........YOU cant......never.

    It is not the mission of TFP to refute all different methods of pool care because it simply would be incorrect.......understanding your pool is what works best..

    TFP's mission is to show you a virtually bullet-proof way of having a sparkling pool at a good price that the vast majority of folks understand and actually enjoy managing their pools this way.


    Teaching someone who doesn't want to be taught is an exercise in futility and I would, as suggested above, change the subject as quickly as possible.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    +1 what Dave said. In a situation like that, dismount. That horse is dead.

    As for his "system": If your coworker told you he never takes his car in for service, never looks under the hood, just fills it with gas and drives, what would you think of that? Would you consider that a viable maintenance plan? Or would you wonder how his car hasn't seized up yet?
    JD - 28' Round Above Ground Pool, 17,000 Gallons. Dual speed Jacuzzi pump with cartridge filter. Dual speed 1 HP pump, Hayward S210T sand filter
    Pool School - PoolMath - HIGHLY Recommended Test Kits

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    You can cut your cost of chlorine by 40% if you go to Ocean State Job Lot and buy 12.5% Shock at $2.99 a gallon.
    30,000 gal, 20 x 40 ft vinyl, IG, installed 2006
    1 HP WhisperFlo pump, 60 sqft Pentair Quad D.E., Liquidator(8 gallon) with 3/8 upgrade,TigerShark cleaning robot
    TFTestkits TF-100 with SpeedStir,WS
    A proud practitioner of TFP since 2013

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    I never give out pool advice to anyone anymore. I just send them to this pool site and they can figure it out on their own. I can use my time more wisely in other ways.

    I do use Trichlor/Dichlor in my pool year round. The key is to understand that different types of chlorine does different things to your water. I use a Trhchlor feeder and once the CYA gets to my desired lelvel, I stop and use 100% bleach. I buy my bleach from Fleet farm. 12.5% case is $10bucks or 4 gallons for $10 bucks. Pretty cheap. I always vacuum the pool on waste as the water is cheap and its perfect in PH. That helps keep the CYA lower too which allows me to use the feeder more often and less work in adding the bleach.

    Knowing your chems by using a test kit(TF100 is my choice) is key. You can save so much more money by that alone and have peace of mind knowing that what you do is correct. I don't guess! NEVER have and NEVER will. You will have a healthier pool, easier on pipes, and much easier and healthy for your body too while you swim in it.

    Happy swims!
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    Wondering if he has ever had problems with equipment? My SIL prescribes the same treatment to her pool, and after two years, has already had her hoses crack from putting the tabs in the skimmer. My kids' suits reek of chlorine from feet away after they are up there. I keep thinking about sneaking a sample of water and testing it, ha ha. She relies on her steips and pool store.
    I dont think it is cheaper if ypu add up ALL of the costs. Likely he buys algacide, and those buckets and cases of shock powder aren't cheap. The only thing they might save on is time.
    26' X 52" Intex Ultra Frame. Intex Sand Filter
    26' X 52 Intex Ultra Frame Install
    You can lead a horse to (clear) water, but you can't force him to swim in it!

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    As far as I know, he hasn't had any equipment problems, but my guess is he'd never disclose that even if he did. I agree with you as well, and I'm thinking there's a lot more to his "method" than he's letting on. So his costs may very well be much equal to or greater than mine, as well as extra effort that he's not telling anyone about.
    26k Gal. 18' x 38' Gunite/White Plaster Roman style in-ground pool, straight Clorox bleach sanitizer, DE filter, TF-100 Test Kit, Taylor Salt Test Kit, Borate Drop test

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    Since coming on TFP, I have not advised anyone on how to take care of their pools. I was tempted to at my cousin's house, but they told me they pay $35 a month to have a pool guy come weekly to maintain their chemicals (I saw a floater with pucks) and equipment, and so my cousins don't even do any work. Kept my mouth shut, and thought to myself "their CYA levels must be through the roof".

    Looking back, maybe it's not a problem because their pool guy either could backwash or drain/refill and it's all part of their deal...
    IG gunite pool size: 12,500 gallons - includes spa with spillover, Polaris vacuum cleaner, Ultrapure Ozonator, inline tab chlorinator that I no longer use
    Filter: Hayward Swimclear Model #4030, 4-Cartridge Filters
    Pump: Century, 2 HP with a Hayward 6060 booster pump
    Date of build: March-April 2014 *NEW* : Test kit: TF-100

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    Re: My coworker just revealed to me his method of pool care....

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    The thread is drifting a bit but the overriding theme seems to be, " How can I convince my friend to do it my way?........YOU cant......never.
    Hi Dave. Actually, I resolved not to brag or proselytize about my pool to anyone since I first began the building process. The conversation described in the op actually only came up because a different coworker and I were discussing how he was looking for a new house, and his wife had demanded that an IGP be on the "must-have" list. In NH, that can severely limit your choice of houses. He had an extreme portrayal of worry on his face as he was telling me this.

    He knew through the grape-vine that I had just finished building a new pool, and he was asking me about how much cost and work it takes to maintain my IGP. The original coworker from my op had overheard our conversation, and apparently saw an opportunity to share his "method" as well. Being a new pool owner, I felt like I had no real rebuttal, or way to reconcile why our methods varied so much, so I felt like I let someone down who was genuinely seeking, and left him more confused than when he started.

    I did refer him to this website, but I cut it short there. I then wanted to find out what others thought about my coworker's method, and if it was actually just nonsense.
    26k Gal. 18' x 38' Gunite/White Plaster Roman style in-ground pool, straight Clorox bleach sanitizer, DE filter, TF-100 Test Kit, Taylor Salt Test Kit, Borate Drop test

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