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Thread: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

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    Question Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    Almost 3 years ago we built a new saltwater pool with Hayward equipment, including an AquaRite Turbo Cell. I inspected and cleaned the Turbo Cell per Hayward's instructions at least twice a year, usually having to do the muriatic acid treatment because of deposits on the plates. I had the Turbo Cell replaced when it died after about 2.5 years, fortunately under warranty.

    When the Turbo Cell died Leslie's Pool Supply tested my water and told me I needed to lower the phosphate level using a rather expensive product that they sell. However, the pool service technician that replaced the Turbo Cell said not to worry about it and that Leslie's tends to sell you things you don't need. What is the truth about SWGs and phosphates?

    In an effort to keep the new Turbo Cell clean I recently started using a monthly maintenance dose of SCALETEC Plus (1 ounce per 1,000 gallons of water). I would appreciate some input on whether or not this is a good idea.
    9,000 gallon in-ground saltwater pool with Hayward Aqua Plus, AquaRite Turbo Cell, SwimClear filter, and TriStar pump

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    Phosphates don't matter at all in a pool. And there is NO impact from phosphates on a SWCG. That's a new one! Anything to sell you something, I guess.

    Don't know anything about scaletec.
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    Phosphates don't matter. Just ignore the phosphate level.

    Ideally you want to balance your levels so the SWG plates never need cleaning. Doing an acid cleaning just slightly shortens the lifetime of the SWG cell.

    Scaletec can help, but it is an additional expense. In nearly all cases it is possible to balance your levels so that it is not needed.

    If you post a full set of water test results we can give you more specific advice.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    As is often the case Leslies is wrong. Utter nonsense about phosphates and SWG.

    I'll let someone else comment on the scaletec, as I really don't know much about it. As to whether it would benefit you even if it works, I would want to see some recent numbers from your pool. Do you have high Calcium hardness in your pool and makeup water?
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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    To help prevent scaling inside a SWG there are a couple of things that are required, but phosphates have nothing to do with it. The number one requirement would be to have the CSI run a little negative, see PoolMath to calculate the CSI, just plug in your numbers into all the fields. Another thing that is helpful is having a borate level of 50 ppm. Having one of the recommended test kits is needed so you have accurate chemical levels of the pool water.

    The service tech was 100% right in saying that Leslie's is trying to sell chemicals that you do not need. Start reading here at TFP and you will soon realize that he has given you sound advice. Start with the sticky in the SWG forum.
    16k gal plaster with raised spa, Jandy DEV60 filter, 2 HP 2-speed SHPF Jandy Stealth pump
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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    Glad to hear the phosphate stuff is rubbish. I am willing to spend the money for Scaletec as a preventive measure since it is a small 9,000 gallon pool and only requires about 1 cup a month. I just wanted to make sure there were no unintended consequences.

    Water chemistry as of this morning is: FCL=3, TCL=3, Alkalinity=100, pH=7.8, Hardness=350. These are from a poolpals test strip and are as close as I can interpret the color coding. I realize the pH is a little high, but that is because a twice weekly 1 quart dose of muriatic acid is due tomorrow. Thanks for your help!
    9,000 gallon in-ground saltwater pool with Hayward Aqua Plus, AquaRite Turbo Cell, SwimClear filter, and TriStar pump

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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    Regarding cleaning, generally a high pressure nozzle will work, but be aware with all the water conservation things going on to get a full pressure one may take some doing. Best bet is buy an old brass one at a yard sale preferable darkened with age!

    I can blow my cell clean with water only. It takes a while but it works. IMO, they are too expensive to shove sticks and things into.

    And the next time you are in that Leslie's, a word to the manager would be a good idea. They beat the clerks with sticks to make them sell more, but they aren't allowed to lie.

    Phosphates help algae grow, but that's about it.
    SWG: CircuPool (May 2014) SI30+Plus; 3000ppm seems ideal;
    My Ideal Specs:
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    14,000 gal, in ground, plaster, Cartridge filter, Borates
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuckiechan View Post
    Regarding cleaning, generally a high pressure nozzle will work
    Much better to balance your levels so you don't get scaling in the first place.
    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: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    How true it is...

    My Circupool seemed to be more scale prone than my Aquarite.

    We'll see what happens this summer.
    SWG: CircuPool (May 2014) SI30+Plus; 3000ppm seems ideal;
    My Ideal Specs:
    FC 5; PH 7.4-7.6; TA 90; CH 350; CYA 75; = SI ~ 0.19
    14,000 gal, in ground, plaster, Cartridge filter, Borates
    TAYLOR K - 2006

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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    Throw the strips away and get a decent test kit. With calicum at 350 you have a greater risk of the plates building up. Scaletec should help in addition to checking cell every 3 months.

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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    I put a little scale free in my water and rarely have to clean my cell. When I do clean it, I soak the cell in vinegar a and use a extra soft bristle toothbrush to help get stuff in the corners. I then rinse it with water and put it back on.
    Lisa
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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    Second what JasonLion stated. I keep my water balanced year round. My cell is three years old and has not been cleaned in 2 years. When I last removed it and inspected it, it looked new with no scaling. I will be inspecting it again when the rain stops for a while. It produces chlorine with no problem but I am interested I seeing what it looks like after two years of service.
    Gunite/Plaster pool at 13k gallons. All Jandy with CL340 series cartridge filter, 1.5 HP Jandy Stealth pump. Jandy 1400 SWCG and PDA4 controller. Dual waterfalls. Polaris 280. Pool installed August 2012. Southern Louisiana. And lets not forget my trusty TF100 test kit!

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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    I may have a old SWG from 20 years ago but.
    I thought they were suppose to be self cleaning.
    if it runs at 4 minutes on, it pauses 6 minutes, resets to opposite polarity and runs the same 4 minutes.
    then resets back after a rest. the amount of time it is on depends on your % of chlorine you request.

    only mistake you can make is not turning the cell off while installing new salt.
    18X36 Grecian 24400 est., pacfab sand Triton II, 1.5hp AOSmith, clormatic 2

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    ComputerGuyInNOLA's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping SWG Plates Clean

    I think most are self cleaning but you will see plenty that have massive amounts of calcium buildup despite the self cleaning function. The following link is to an article on TD Chlorinators web site that has an image of a cell with a lot of calcium buildup. Funny thing about this Australian companies web site is it has the TFP logo that links to this site.

    http://www.tdchlorinators.com.au/sal...aintenance.php
    Gunite/Plaster pool at 13k gallons. All Jandy with CL340 series cartridge filter, 1.5 HP Jandy Stealth pump. Jandy 1400 SWCG and PDA4 controller. Dual waterfalls. Polaris 280. Pool installed August 2012. Southern Louisiana. And lets not forget my trusty TF100 test kit!

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