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Thread: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

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    How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    We live an area with hard water, and are exploring the possibility of retrofitting our house with a soft water loop. Since it wasn't added during construction, the entire house, including the pool refill valve, would have to be on soft water. I can keep one outside tap hard, so initial filling of the pool could still have hard water, but all of the evaporation/refill would be soft. We would use NaCL as a softener over KCl. Does anyone have first hand experience with soft water in a pool? I understand that I would need to maintain an acceptable level of calcium to prevent leaching from the pebbletec. I have also read that soft water will increase alkalinity and PH, and we already have frequent acid demand in the summer, so I am not sure what to expect there. With a SWG, would the softened water be likely to drive my salt saturation up quickly, thus rendering my chlorinator ineffective?(Obviously it would depend on specifics and calibration, but I am just seeking out any information/advice/experience to weigh the headache of it all). We do not want to drain/refill every year or hamper our equipment. Less calcium scaling sounds nice, but I do not have a problem with having hard water in our pool If we were to do it, the goal is to get soft water in the house, so we are trying to decide if soft water in the pool is a deal breaker. The system we have was not maintained well by previous owners, so we have already had a great deal of maintenance. The last thing we want to do is damage the pool or pool equipment. Any insight is appreciated!

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    Many people use soft water for topping off evaporation. It works very well, and when used in combination with small quantities of hard water you never need to add, or remove, calcium. The one issue, and this is rare, is that the salt level will be higher than it otherwise would be. As long as salt stays below 6000, and it probably will, you are fine. But you do want to monitor the salt level and in rare cases may need to lower it.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    Post the city and state where you live.......the softener may be a blessing. Do you know the CH of your fill water?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    We are in Gilbert, AZ. City stats say water hardness runs from 4-24 or so here. I just did the calcium test on our tap water and was a bit surprised it isn't higher. I came up with a range of 180-200 (never quite sure if I should wait until it turns completely blue, or starts to change color). We do see scaling on the pool very quickly after refilling, and that is very common here.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    All tests are done until the last drop causes no further color change and that drop does not count.

    Please add your location (City, State or City, Country) to your profile and pool details to your signature as described HERE as it will help us help you.
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    Re: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    I somehow lost my signature, but I have updated it again. Thanks for clarifying the testing...guess that puts me at 190 for hardness in our tap water.
    14k gallon pebbletec pool/spillover spa, waterfall, SWG, cartridge filters, Hayward Ecostar pump, Aqualogic chlorinator, in-floor A&A cleaning system, Gilbert - AZ, Testing with TFT-100

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    Re: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    I just tested my tap water also and it was 150. I'm assuming that is on the low end and just fine if I recall correctly
    15,000 gallon free form Viking fiberglass pool. Hayward Star-Clear Plus C12002 cartridge filter. Hayward Swim Pure Plus T-15 SWG. Testing with TF-100 Kit. 2 speed 1.5HP Supreme pump. Dolphin Nautilus robotic cleaner

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    Re: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    I live in Portland, OR and the water here is naturally very soft. I have to add calcium when I open the pool as well as increase the PH and alkalinity since I have a mesh winter cover. I haven't had a problem with PH or alkalinity. I have a SWG and if I get my alkalinity at about 80 or 90 when I open the pool the PH is very stable and I haven't added acid in several years.
    10,000 gal Inground Fiberglass Pool;Aquarite SWG; Hayward H Series Gas Heater;
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    laveenmoose's Avatar
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    Re: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    I'm in Laveen, Arizona, so on City of Phoenix water, which is very hard. I emptied and refilled my pool last March, and used 70% soft water, 30% city water. After a year everything works perfectly, and the water has a great "soft" feel to it.
    10.5K IG gunnite pool with micro-pebble finish in Caribbean blue with Baja step. Haywood main filter with Perry's Pool Pump 1hp motor. Jandy CL-340 cartridge filter. Circupool RJ30 SWG system. TF100 test kit with Speedstir. Floating beer cooler.

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    Re: How will soft water impact my pool/SWG/equipment?

    Thanks for all of the replies...forgot my password and took me a while to log back in. We didn't like our configuration options, so we passed on the softener, but it is good to know it is a possibility for the future.
    14k gallon pebbletec pool/spillover spa, waterfall, SWG, cartridge filters, Hayward Ecostar pump, Aqualogic chlorinator, in-floor A&A cleaning system, Gilbert - AZ, Testing with TFT-100

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