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Thread: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

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    What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Its not hard like calcium. You can scrape it off. when I dunk in into and acid solution it doesn't really bubble.It feels like a cross between wet sand and styrofoam. It is bright white and if you squish it between your fingers it will turn to a gritty paste. I tasted it and it is not salty.


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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    It is calcium and you should remove it with acid/water solution. It will not bubble very much unless there is a lot of the calcium. Be very careful if you scrape it off as the plates can be easily damaged.
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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Quote Originally Posted by ping View Post
    It is calcium and you should remove it with acid/water solution. It will not bubble very much unless there is a lot of the calcium. Be very careful if you scrape it off as the plates can be easily damaged.
    In my experience, calcium scale has been much harder and almost flakes off and is "flakey". This substance could be broken off with just my fingers where I can access it. It has almost a cauliflower texture. There was a ton of it in some areas which I would think make the acid bubble. Also, without adding water, I could mash it between my fingers and it turned into a gritty paste. This just does not sound like calcium characteristics.

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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    I am having the same issue with my SWG. It is so bad that I must clean the white rock off once a week. Calcium hardness is 360 and my fill water as of yesterday was 160. Does anyone have experience with how to deal with this issue? This is really making the SWG useless because I must continually disassemble the cell unit to clean with CLR.
    Anybody having the same issue? I live in Arizona, and am wondering if I should look into some type of whole house water mineral eliminator/reducer??


    Carl in Arizona
    Intex AG, 18x9x52", Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump Model SF10110 1050 gal/hr max pressure 35 psi

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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Quote Originally Posted by rockstr66 View Post
    I am having the same issue with my SWG. It is so bad that I must clean the white rock off once a week. Calcium hardness is 360 and my fill water as of yesterday was 160. Does anyone have experience with how to deal with this issue? This is really making the SWG useless because I must continually disassemble the cell unit to clean with CLR.
    Anybody having the same issue? I live in Arizona, and am wondering if I should look into some type of whole house water mineral eliminator/reducer??

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    That CH is fine, but you have failed to report the rest of your test results which would give indication of why you are seeing a lot of scaling. For example, the pH is the largest factor. Also, I am not sure if the Intex SWG have the circuitry to reverse polarity and thus reduce the buildup.
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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Keeping Borates, pH and other values in optimum range appears to do a lot to keep cell clean. In our family pools, the Simpool pH injector is placed right before the Pentair Filter and it also appears to have a positive effect in keeping cell clean.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Quote Originally Posted by susa View Post
    Keeping Borates, pH and other values in optimum range appears to do a lot to keep cell clean. In our family pools, the Simpool pH injector is placed right before the Pentair Filter and it also appears to have a positive effect in keeping cell clean.
    Injecting the acid before the filter seems like a bad idea to me. I thought it was supposed to be injected after all the equipment?
    Although I could see the advantage to injecting it prior to the SWG cell to help keep it clean, but that too may shorten the life of the cell depending on how acidic the water becomes.
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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    I have found, as stated above, that keeping pH and TA in check helps. Adding borates for me completely solved the problem. In fact, I never added borates back after replastering, and I just had to clean my cell for the first time. Ordered 165 lbs of boric acid yesterday, can't wait to get borates back up.
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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Yes, injectors are placed before Pentair filters, all according to instructions and all family IntelliChlor cells average 4 years of use and are now swapped out unconditionally at 3 year warranty expiration(s) but are still working fine. No deposits ever on the cells, no cleaning and no issues on any of the systems.

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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    That CH is fine, but you have failed to report the rest of your test results which would give indication of why you are seeing a lot of scaling. For example, the pH is the largest factor. Also, I am not sure if the Intex SWG have the circuitry to reverse polarity and thus reduce the buildup.
    Hello jbIzzle,

    Sorry for leaving that out. Just back from vacation, but this test is pretty typical with the PH just slightly higher than usual. Fill water tested at 160 yesterday.

    TC:3.5
    Fc:3.0
    TA:150
    CH:360
    PH:8
    CYA:30

    Added acid to reduce PH per pool app
    Added stabilizer to raise CYA per pool app
    Added some bleach to raise chlorine a bit per app

    Will check again in a week.
    Thoughts?


    Carl in Arizona
    Intex AG, 18x9x52", Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump Model SF10110 1050 gal/hr max pressure 35 psi

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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Not sure about the polarity, but the plug is keyed going into the generator and I know of no other way to reverse the polarity.


    Carl in Arizona
    Intex AG, 18x9x52", Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump Model SF10110 1050 gal/hr max pressure 35 psi

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    It would happen automatically in the controller. I don't think yours does it.

    You have to better control the pH.
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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    I suggest to not only get the pH lower and not let it get above 7.8, but to get the TA down to 70 which will help a lot with the scaling and rising pH. You are making the SWG work a lot harder than it needs to also by keeping the CYA so low, raise it to 80 which will also help with the scaling and pH.
    16k gal plaster with raised spa, Jandy DEV60 filter, 2 HP 2-speed SHPF Jandy Stealth pump
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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Thanks all for the suggestions! I will get right on the PH and CYA and report back in a week or so


    Carl in Arizona
    Intex AG, 18x9x52", Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump Model SF10110 1050 gal/hr max pressure 35 psi

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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    Just to add to what ping said, assuming your salt is 3,000 ppm and your water temp is 92 (about what mine is in Houston) your CSI is +.71 so you are in the range to get scale.
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    Re: What is this white substance building on my saltwater cell?

    As your PH rises, the scale in your cell increases because minerals come out of solution more easily at high PH. I have a fussy pool, so I check PH every three days. Once a week is not enough, IMO.

    Also your CH is a little high also.

    IMO, some cells are more fussy than others regarding chemical balance. If your salt is at the upper range, that can contribute to scale also.
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    FC 5; PH 7.4-7.6; TA 90; CH 350; CYA 75; = SI ~ 0.19
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