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Thread: Intellichem Install... Am I crazy? PH- Feeding the wrong chem?

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    Montucky's Avatar
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    Unhappy Intellichem Install... Am I crazy? PH- Feeding the wrong chem?

    Hello there! I have been taking good care of a 50K outdoor pool and a 5K outdoor spa for over 5 years now and love the old system. Everything is very basic and pretty much what I would call manual. It reminds me of the pool I helped my grandpa take care of growing up. Simple and easy to take care of with daily care.

    I work at a hotel and some big shots came in from Idaho and installed an indoor pool and spa for our new hotel addition. They flooded my guest room adjacent to the pool when firing up the system for the first time. The plumbing was damaged to the fill valve in the pool. The waterfall, they forgot to install the lights and it soaked the foam behind the fake rock. They fixed these problems but I continue to find stuff that does not make sense. Unfortunately, there are very few pool experts in our valley and I can't exactly ask for help on a new pool yet.

    My biggest problem is with the Intellichem system. We have it installed on the spa and the pool. Both are high on PH and the state passed us during the inspection for all it's worth. I suspect the material used to grout the stone pebble finish will raise the ph for a few months and the waterfall will also raise it. ... but, the darn thing is just way too high...

    My major question is can the Intellichem system, standing alone, be used to inject BASE instead of ACID? We tore out an old outdoor spa that was using a similar ORP and PH controller and it used liquid chlorine and liquid muratic acid.

    Our new system has a Culligan container right in the middle of our already small room and it's full of a solution of Sodium Carbonate (soda ash). There are two lines that go out of this tank and to the pumps. One for the pool and one for the spa.

    I read the entire manual tonight on the system and there is ONE word on page 12 of the manual that says BASE.

    Everything else in the manual leads me to believe that this system will only dose the pool and spa with HCL when the PH gets above the set range.

    It doesn't make much sense to me. It would be much more helpful for us to have acid being pumped into the system. I doubt that, if it was set up to inject soda ash in order to raise the PH, we would use more than one gallon of the solution in a month. Heck, I don't even know the mix they threw in there. At least it has a nice timer and mixer to keep the solution from settling.

    HELP! AM I NUTS? Or do I just not know anything about this level of a pool. We're rednecks that care about our guests and facility. This thing is a space ship compared to our old pool. I have a lot to learn but perhaps I'm just over thinking it. I've been very critical since they flooded my new, beautiful room and I had to clean and repair it.

    Thanks so much for your help.

    Nic

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Intellichem Install... Am I crazy? PH- Feeding the wrong chem?

    The IntelliChem is designed to feed acid. I don't think it will work with a base.

    However, I'm confused. You say that the PH is always high, and then you say you want to feed a base, which would just raise the PH even higher. The only time you would want to feed a base is if you are using a very acidic chlorine source (like trichlor).
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Montucky's Avatar
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    Re: Intellichem Install... Am I crazy? PH- Feeding the wrong chem?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion View Post
    The IntelliChem is designed to feed acid. I don't think it will work with a base.

    However, I'm confused. You say that the PH is always high, and then you say you want to feed a base, which would just raise the PH even higher. The only time you would want to feed a base is if you are using a very acidic chlorine source (like trichlor).
    It was a little late so my wording may have been confusing. I read it again and didn't see where I wanted to feed Base.

    My supervisors in Management have a tendency to be a bit skeptical for some reason and I have just learned to deal with that and let them pay for it later instead of listening to me now.

    However, I have to deal with this pool two to three times a day and the PH is always high. It is set up to feed a Soda ash Solution. It is a new build with lots of crazy kinks. I would love to feed Acid and want to make sure I'm right about them setting it up wrong to feed base. I'm almost certain that it cant.

    I was hoping to confirm that there is no way for the Intellichem controllers to feed Base. This way the contractor would have to remove the silly container from the room and install it properly with an acid tank.

    Anyway, thanks for your help. Next step is trying to get the managers to believe that all the air in my new pumps and the hokey job of the drain plumbing is all messed up.

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    Montucky's Avatar
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    Re: Intellichem Install... Am I crazy? PH- Feeding the wrong chem?

    Well, lets see if I can figure this photo thing out...

    After confirming my suspicion that an intellichem controller can't be set up to feed base chemicals automatically, I wanted to confirm this with the MFG. I spoke with an expert in automation after being transferred three times. They were honest and said it was way beyond their personal knowledge with the product.

    Had a good conversation with someone who lives and breathes controls and this gear for a living. He also stated that the intellichem system will not feed base, according to the reading it calculates.

    So, I'm 99.999% sure that it wont do what our new system was built to do. Here is a photo of the tank of Sodium Carbonate and water solution in the middle of the boiler room. Not only it is in the way, I think it's pretty much useless. It is quite the custom setup as it hosts an internal circulation stenner that is on a timer. The hole with the vent in the top vents it a little but it's also on a timer to kick on every 30 minutes so the solution does not settle.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Here is where it gets confusing. I confirmed this setting on the unit. I have two controllers, one for the pool and one for the spa. They share a line from the stenner pump to the custom monstrosity culligan base solution bucket of joy.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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