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Thread: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

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    Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    I'm new here. I have just begun a trial run of the CYA reducer.
    Info:
    Small 10K gallon in-ground pool in Northern California. Have been using a pool store for years to test my water and obtain chemicals to maintain my own pool. They have always recommended the Trichlor 3" hockey pucks which I have been using for years, but I have noticed an ever increasing required FC level to avoid algae. They tested my water recently and reported a CYA level of 150. I was suspicious that their test may have maxed out. I had been running a FC level of 10% of the CYA level in the past, but during the past year, I've had to run 20+ ppm FC to avoid a swamp. I am now doing my own testing using both a Taylor K-2006 kit and test strips. Multiple tests at different dilution levels showed my CYA to be 350 ppm (not 150 as the pool store printout said). So much for the pool store wisdom of using Trichlor hockey pucks (and testing accuracy).

    I can't drain and re-fill my pool because of the drought. I decided to try the new Bio-Active CYA reducer.

    I have reduced the FC level to 2 ppm - verified with 2 different kits and test strips. My PH is 7.4 - verified with multiple tests. Yesterday I dumped the contents of the CYA reducer pouch into my skimmer. I am running the pump/filter >8 hours per day. I intend to make multiple measurements of the CYA level every other day for the next week or so. Hopefully the CYA will come down to <100 ppm before the pool turns green! I'll post my results here. I'll be using bleach instead of trichlor from now on (after my CYA level comes down). Wish me luck!

    Dick
    Northern CA - zone 9a; 10K gallon in-ground; dark Pebbletec-type plaster/ stone; 3/4 hp pump; fiberglass cartrage filter; daily filter time is 8 hr/day during summer and 6 hr/day during winter. May-Nov almost daily use.

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Best of luck!! I know this has been a hot topic lately. I know many are curious.
    IG gunite/plaster pool/spa Started 1/17/14, Plastered 5/16/14
    Size: 12'-21'x39' free form, depth ranging from 4' to 7, attached 6 person spa with spillover.
    Equipment: Whisperflo 2hp pump, Pentair 30" sand filter, Pentair Mastertemp 400k BTU heater, 1hp Whisperflo for waterfalls, and a blower for spa floor

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Good luck!

    If you have read around here much you have probably seen that not much credence is given to pool store testing. While you would think that a "professional" would be the best, unfortunately in most cases it is quite the opposite.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Great! Welcome, and thanks for sharing this with us!
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Hope it works!
    17x41 Sun Fiberglass Pool 21,500 gallons. Jandy 1hp pump, Hayward Top Mount Sand Filter, Coverstar Auto Cover.

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Start (Day 0): CYA = 350 ppm; PH = 7.4; FC 2 ppm; Water clear – no algae; water temp ~ 70 F


    Day 1:
    As with any plan of battle, the plan changes as soon as the first shot is fired.
    By mid day, PH = 7.0, FC = 1 ppm; water clear – no algae; water temp ~ 70 F
    I have no explanation for the change in PH or FC. Both values were outside the declared “optimal range” for Bio-Active CYA Reducer to be effective. Therefore, I 1) adjusted the FC to 3.0 using Clorox Bleach (about 1 quart), and 2) adjusted the PH up to 7.6 using about 10 lbs of Borox. All tests were done with the Taylor K-2006 test kit. These adjustments puts the FC and the PH in the “optimal range” as per the CYA reducer product literature. Since water parameters were today bouncing around and being adjusted, I decided not to take a CYA measurement at the end of Day 1. I also decided to run the filter 24 hours per day to try to inhibit algae growth and mix in the added chemicals well. We’ll see where the CYA level is tomorrow.

    Dick
    Northern CA - zone 9a; 10K gallon in-ground; dark Pebbletec-type plaster/ stone; 3/4 hp pump; fiberglass cartrage filter; daily filter time is 8 hr/day during summer and 6 hr/day during winter. May-Nov almost daily use.

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    You are doing a very nice job controlling your parameters and your posts are clear and concise......very nice.

    Thanks for doing this.......many are watching.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Yes, great job, and thank you!
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    G'day All,

    First off today, I must humbly admit to a bonehead error in measuring the starting CYA level. I thought I had been using a dilution of 2:1 and 4:1 and had calculated the beginning CYA levels to be about 350 ppm. After taking Day 2 CYA reading, which came out to be 640 ppm, I reviewed my notes from the initial Day 0 test. In the initial test, I had actually used 4:1 and 8:1 dilutions (not 2:1 and 4:1 as used in the calculations). So my starting CYA level was actually about 700 ppm. Considering dilution variances and reading variances, I would say my CYA readings have an error margin of +/- 10 percent.

    This brings up several issues like:
    1) My CYA is so high, that it may be beyond the capabilities of the Bio-Active CYA reducer
    2) Will such high CYA levels impact the accuracy of other tests (FC, PH, etc)?

    In any event I have decided to continue the trial and assume the reading from the Taylor K-2006 are reasonably accurate.

    So here is a (corrected) summary:
    Start: CYA 700ppm; PH 7.4; FC 3 ppm
    Day 1: CYA not taken. PH 7.0 adjusted up to 7.4, FC 1.0 adjusted up to 3.0
    Day 2: CYA 640 ppm; PH 7.2 adjusted up to 7.6; FC 2.5 adjusted up to 3.0; CC=0; TA = 180, CH=580 ; water temp 68F; water clear-no algae

    FC was adjusted with Clorox. PH was adjusted with Borox.

    Although the CYA level has appeared to come down by 60, it’s still within the margin of error. We’ll see how it looks tomorrow.

    I know the TA and the CH are a bit high, but I do not want to add more chemicals than necessary at this point, fearing that they might impact the CYA reducer. I’ll worry about the TA and CH after this CYA reducer trial.

    My abnormally stratospheric CYA level is probably the result of the pool store always telling me over the years that my CYA was 150 when their test just maxed out at 150 and they should have been telling me the CYA was OVER 150. I'm sure that by followiing the pool store recommendation to always use 3" trichor hockey pucks over the years my CYA level has been continuously climbing for years.

    I realize that my abnormally stratospheric CYA may call into question how this trial outcome would translate to CYA reading closer to normal. Unless there is an objection, I will continue posting the results here on a day by day basis.

    Dick
    Northern CA - zone 9a; 10K gallon in-ground; dark Pebbletec-type plaster/ stone; 3/4 hp pump; fiberglass cartrage filter; daily filter time is 8 hr/day during summer and 6 hr/day during winter. May-Nov almost daily use.

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    If you are up for continuing, we would love to hear your results.

    Using an 8:1 dilution your error is around +-150, definitely more than 10%.
    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: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Quote Originally Posted by Rflasck View Post
    I realize that my abnormally stratospheric CYA may call into question how this trial outcome would translate to CYA reading closer to normal. Unless there is an objection, I will continue posting the results here on a day by day basis.

    Dick
    There would never be an objection for something like this around here. We are extremely interested in this product as if it would will be a wonderful addition to the pool maintenance toolkit.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    OK. I'll continue to post my results daily.

    The +/- 10 percent was based on empirical results by taking several sequential readings on the same water sample, with a separate dilution procedure before each test. My results from the same water seemed to ne within 10 percent, Yes, I'm using huge amounts of R-0013 reagent!

    Dick
    Northern CA - zone 9a; 10K gallon in-ground; dark Pebbletec-type plaster/ stone; 3/4 hp pump; fiberglass cartrage filter; daily filter time is 8 hr/day during summer and 6 hr/day during winter. May-Nov almost daily use.

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    If anything, I would expect the product to work better when the CYA levels were higher. The CYA is a "nutrient" for these bacteria in the product. What is not clear is what other parameters may help or hurt with the product being effective, such as the FC level (I'm surprised they don't recommend having that as low as possible, even zero) and other nutrient levels (phosphates, nitrates). Clearly temperature is a factor where warmer is better until one gets quite hot.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Rflask,

    I'd really like to thank you for all the information you're giving us with this product. TFP is VERY excited to get any data we can on this, as it's a new option that could help a TON of new members in the future. Seeing that you currently are using a large amount of R-0013 could you please PM me your Name and Address as I'd like to send you a refill. We'd like any data we can get on this product, and I'd like to help you out some in your process.

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Quote Originally Posted by Leebo View Post
    Rflask,

    I'd really like to thank you for all the information you're giving us with this product. TFP is VERY excited to get any data we can on this, as it's a new option that could help a TON of new members in the future. Seeing that you currently are using a large amount of R-0013 could you please PM me your Name and Address as I'd like to send you a refill. We'd like any data we can get on this product, and I'd like to help you out some in your process.
    Thanks for the kind words and the generous offer. I think I already have sufficient R-0013 on-hand and on order. I'll be posting Day 3 results tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon.

    Dick
    Northern CA - zone 9a; 10K gallon in-ground; dark Pebbletec-type plaster/ stone; 3/4 hp pump; fiberglass cartrage filter; daily filter time is 8 hr/day during summer and 6 hr/day during winter. May-Nov almost daily use.

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Quote Originally Posted by Rflasck View Post
    Thanks for the kind words and the generous offer. I think I already have sufficient R-0013 on-hand and on order. I'll be posting Day 3 results tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon.

    Dick
    Let's hope the updated results will be positive!!

    Many of here want this product to work.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Howdy!

    Day 3:

    Cleaned my fiberglass filter carts. No sign of live algae. Water clear. Water temp 70F.

    FC = 2.5 did not adjust
    CC = 0
    PH = 7.6 did not adjust
    TA = 175
    CH = 600
    CYA = 520 (based on careful 8:1 dilution and 4 readings averaged)


    JasonLion: I have noticed that the CYA reading depends on the lighting conditions under which I am trying to see the black dot disapear. My +/- 10 percent may be optimistic. Today when I was standing in the shade the reading was 560 (twice), but standing in direct sunlight it was 480 (twice).

    Looks like the CYA may be coming down. Let’s see what tomorrow brings.

    Dick
    Northern CA - zone 9a; 10K gallon in-ground; dark Pebbletec-type plaster/ stone; 3/4 hp pump; fiberglass cartrage filter; daily filter time is 8 hr/day during summer and 6 hr/day during winter. May-Nov almost daily use.

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Hi Rflask,
    the lighting conditions for testing CYA is definitely an important element. The best way to test it.

    Test outside in natural light. Turn your back to the sun and dispense the solution into the test tube until the dot disappears.
    Most of us also find that holding the tube at waist level helps with determining if the black dot is gone or not.

    Of all the testing we do, the CYA acutally has more science involved than any other test.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Quote Originally Posted by Divin Dave View Post
    Hi Rflask,
    the lighting conditions for testing CYA is definitely an important element. The best way to test it.

    Test outside in natural light. Turn your back to the sun and dispense the solution into the test tube until the dot disappears.
    Most of us also find that holding the tube at waist level helps with determining if the black dot is gone or not.

    Of all the testing we do, the CYA acutally has more science involved than any other test.
    I'll standardize on your CYA measuring techinque. I'm an amateur astronomer. My eyes are trained to notice small contrast differences, so I may have readings a bit lower than some folks. Thanks for the tip.

    Dick
    Northern CA - zone 9a; 10K gallon in-ground; dark Pebbletec-type plaster/ stone; 3/4 hp pump; fiberglass cartrage filter; daily filter time is 8 hr/day during summer and 6 hr/day during winter. May-Nov almost daily use.

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    Re: Bio-Active CYA Reducer trial

    Day 4: Not good news

    Water clear with no algae. Water temp was 69F

    FC = 1.75 (adjusted up to 3.0 after all tests were completed)
    CC = 0
    PH = 7.6
    TA = 175
    CH = 575
    CYA = 760 !!

    The CYA was measured 2 times on each of 2 separately diluted samples. It is a cloudy day here, so I could not stand in direct sunlight with the sun behind me during the tests. On the Taylor CYA column the measurements were 90, 90, 100, and 100. The average was 95 and with an 8:1 dilution that translates into 760. I suspect that if it had been a sunny day, it would have taken a taller sample column to make the black dot “disappear.” Also, the outside temperature was significantly lower than the previous days – maybe that had an impact on the reading also. I am not terribly impressed with the test kit for measuring high CYA.

    I will continue the trial, but I am beginning to have concerns regarding the Taylor K-2006 CYA testing accuracy, reproducibility and precision.

    I will try to redo the CYA test this afternoon if the air temperature rises. It was 55F when I did the measurement today, and was 80F when I did the measurement yesterday. If outside air temp turns out to be a influential parameter in the test results, I’ll try to take the readings at the same air temperature each day.

    On a side note, the original starting reading of 700 was taken in the evening, at a lower air temp (which I did not record at the time. It makes me suspicious that the CYA test results may be VERY sample temperature dependent.

    Dick
    Northern CA - zone 9a; 10K gallon in-ground; dark Pebbletec-type plaster/ stone; 3/4 hp pump; fiberglass cartrage filter; daily filter time is 8 hr/day during summer and 6 hr/day during winter. May-Nov almost daily use.

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