First...Great site and community. This is my first question on the forums and I am trying to make the transition from the pool company that installed the pool running my chemicals to controlling it myself. My pool was installed in May, but due to construction delays with the deck it is just now completed. For most of the summer it was run on the basic Bioguard Maintain system, but now my SWG is up and running with the Bioguard Mineral Springs System. They have me using the Bioguard Mineral Springs Weekly Renewal, which I cant tell what it is actually doing. I know this forum is dedicated to a "better way", so I have been reading and learning and believe I have a basic understanding to start asking educated questions, lol.
My current reading from my Waterlink Spin Lab (yes, I have my own and not from the pool store) are:
Added some MA to bring down pH (my IntellipH just arrived and is not installed yet) and running water laminars to aerate water to help bring down Alkalinity ( I assume 70-80 based on suggested levels?).
They want me to use Bioguard 300 balance to raise hardness...is there a better way?
I assume the iron/copper levels are low enough not to worry about?
I think they got carried away with salt, is the only way to get it down to drain and refill?
They also just installed the auto cover, I haven't used it yet as I am trying to get my initial balance right. Once the pool is covered most of the time how will this affect the chemistry fluctuations?
Lastly, I am all for getting what you pay for. So is Bioguard worth the money? I can afford it, but not going to use it if it is no different than using anything else. Do all the "special" additives they claim to have to help the filter, SWG scaling, etc. really have any merit? Especially with this weekly mineral springs renewal, none of their products list all their ingredients. Again, cost is not as much of an issue as the best for the system and least hassle and time. I know not to trust ALEX at the store, but are the products legit? If it makes absolutely no difference then I will use basic stuff from local hardware store. I have the Datamate 10 software that came with my spinlab, but don't trust it to dose my pool based without understanding what it is telling me to do.
Thanks in advance, and I look forward to learning more and messing with the pool less. Any other advice is greatly appreciated.