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Thread: Fine Brown Dust

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    Fine Brown Dust

    I'm at a loss. I run all Pentair Equipment (clean and clear plus 320 filter, variable speed pump, IC40 SWG).

    Three weeks ago the pool was flooded due to flash floods in the area. After a couple of weeks of scrubbing daily to literally get the dirt out that was washed into the pool and cleaning the filters the pool is sparkling again.

    I also shocked the pool using the overnight FC test and the chemicals are all in line in fact FC is still a little high from the shock (7ppm) but it's winter so that doesn't surprise me. No CC registering.

    However, I can get rid of this brown super fine dust looking stuff that settles to the bottom.

    I thought it was dirt or clay but I just don't think it is after brushing it to the drain repeatedly three or four times.

    I know the opinion regarding phosphates and I get that having them isn't a big deal if you keep the FC in check but could this "dust" be phosphates settling?

    Pool store does say phosphates are really high but I have never paid much attention to them when they say that.

    I don't think this is algae but I have never had an algae bloom (I am pretty OCD so test the chemicals a LOT) so I guess I wouldn't know.

    Just tired of brushing this stuff to the main drain and seeing it reappear the very next day. Any thoughts?
    VS 3050 Pentair Pump, Pentair Clean and Clear Plus 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IC 40 SWG

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    A full set of test results would be helpful, but it sounds like you are going to need to SLAM your pool until the dust is gone. Have you tried vacuuming it up?
    14K Freeform Gunite w/60% Blue Quartz plaster, Quad DE filter, Intelliflo VS Pump + Booster for Cleaner, Aquacal Heat Pump

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Fine Brown Dust

    Does this dust disappear when you brush it ? If it does it's dead algae. Im assuming not since you say your brushing it to the drain so it must stay visible to the eye. I would think its fine dirt then.
    Is there any tears in your filter that could let dirt pass thru ?
    Are you doing your own water testing or is the pool store doing it since you mentioned about the phosphate level from the pool store ? If your doing your own testing can you post a set of test results and what test kit your using. Also could you add your location to your signature. Sometimes that makes a difference on advice you will get if you have other questions.
    Jeff
    24'x54" AG Morada RTR (by wilbar) 13'500 gal. Hayward Powerflo Matrix 1hp 2 speed. Hayward Perflex EC65 DE filter.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    Likely there is simply a significant amount of fine dust that got into suspension in the water and is slowly settling out over the course of several days. If you vacuum it up it should stop returning within a week.

    By the by, it is not a good idea to brush debris into the main drain unless your drain is designed especially to collect debris (typically only true with in-floor cleaning systems). There is rarely enough suction to pull the debris all the way to the filter, and it will slowly accumulate in the drain system and eventually block it.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion View Post
    Likely there is simply a significant amount of fine dust that got into suspension in the water and is slowly settling out over the course of several days. If you vacuum it up it should stop returning within a week.

    By the by, it is not a good idea to brush debris into the main drain unless your drain is designed especially to collect debris (typically only true with in-floor cleaning systems). There is rarely enough suction to pull the debris all the way to the filter, and it will slowly accumulate in the drain system and eventually block it.
    Thanks. I will send full test results asap. I was thinking it was fine dust but it has been three weeks with at least every other day brushing and it's still there.

    does it create an issue to brush fine dust that "poofs" and resettles into the main drain?

    When you say vacuum I assume you mean vacuum to waste, right? I can't do that and my Legend vacuum bag isnt fine enough to catch this stuff. Maybe I should invest in a vacuum that hooks to the skimmer so I can vacuum to waste?
    VS 3050 Pentair Pump, Pentair Clean and Clear Plus 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IC 40 SWG

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Fine Brown Dust

    Like I said early if this dust poofs up and disappears when it's touched it's likely dead algae. If it is dead algae it will have to be vacuumed up. Is it light brown in color ?
    Vacuum to waste would be the best way to remove it if your filter bag won't catch it.
    Jeff
    24'x54" AG Morada RTR (by wilbar) 13'500 gal. Hayward Powerflo Matrix 1hp 2 speed. Hayward Perflex EC65 DE filter.

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    Quote Originally Posted by pwrstrk View Post
    Like I said early if this dust poofs up and disappears when it's touched it's likely dead algae. If it is dead algae it will have to be vacuumed up. Is it light brown in color ?
    Vacuum to waste would be the best way to remove it if your filter bag won't catch it.
    Yes, light brown in color. Vacuum to waste I guess means I need to get the skimmer vacuum setup right?
    VS 3050 Pentair Pump, Pentair Clean and Clear Plus 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IC 40 SWG

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Fine Brown Dust

    Yep. Do you have that option with a multi-port valve to vacuum to waste ?
    Jeff
    24'x54" AG Morada RTR (by wilbar) 13'500 gal. Hayward Powerflo Matrix 1hp 2 speed. Hayward Perflex EC65 DE filter.

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    Quote Originally Posted by pwrstrk View Post
    Yep. Do you have that option with a multi-port valve to vacuum to waste ?
    I do.
    VS 3050 Pentair Pump, Pentair Clean and Clear Plus 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IC 40 SWG

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    Here are my test results with Tf test kit:
    FC: 6.5
    CYA: 30
    CC: 0
    PH: 7.8
    TA: 100
    SALT: 3220
    CH:. 240
    VS 3050 Pentair Pump, Pentair Clean and Clear Plus 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IC 40 SWG

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    While those numbers are fairly good, there are numerous minor adjustments I would do. Still, nothing there really suggests any clues to the brown dust.

    With a SWG you normally want CYA up around 70 to 80, and TA down around 60 to 70. CH should be raised at least a little, I would raise it to at least 300 before lowering TA. FC is a little higher than you need to have it, though not problematic.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion View Post
    While those numbers are fairly good, there are numerous minor adjustments I would do. Still, nothing there really suggests any clues to the brown dust.

    With a SWG you normally want CYA up around 70 to 80, and TA down around 60 to 70. CH should be raised at least a little, I would raise it to at least 300 before lowering TA. FC is a little higher than you need to have it, though not problematic.
    Thanks. I knew the CYA needed raising but was going to shock so I figured I would leave it while I shocked it. Water is around 50 degrees right now.

    Going to shock until overnight is less than one ppm drop again. if the dust still persists i will vacuum to waste and hopefully that will do it.

    i will report back as to what fixes the issue.

    Thank you everyone!
    VS 3050 Pentair Pump, Pentair Clean and Clear Plus 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IC 40 SWG

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    Do you have flagstone around the pool?

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    Not sure if this is helpful or not but has come in handy for me in the past. Is at all possible that the brown dust is coming from outside the pool? If so get a bucket and fill it with tap water from inside the house and place the bucket outside next to the pool. If you see the same brown dust collect in the bucket then you know it is coming from outside the pool.
    25,000 gallon in ground white plaster- 1 1/2 HP Pentair SuperFlo pump - 60 sqft FNS DE filter (with FiberClear), 1999 Sundance Optima 850 hot tub.
    Manassas Park, VA

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    Quote Originally Posted by Poolguy1 View Post
    Do you have flagstone around the pool?
    no flagstone. i am pretty sure it is not dust from around the pool. after looking at everyones comments i am thinking it is dead algae
    VS 3050 Pentair Pump, Pentair Clean and Clear Plus 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IC 40 SWG

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    Re: Fine Brown Dust

    after looking at everyones comments i am thinking it is dead algae
    Yeah, I tend to agree. I think you'll have it cleaned up soon IF you keep your FC up.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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