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Thread: pebblesheen installer recommends a no-drain acid wash

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    pebblesheen installer recommends a no-drain acid wash

    Hello to All,

    Our pebblesheen finish [Irish-mist] has started to darken on many areas throughout the pool. Combined w the spa, it is about 15.5K chlorine based.

    The vendor recommended a no-drain acid wash and said they would do a couple of test places to see how this would work.

    I heard on a pool radio talk show w someone having the same problem and also going to have to do a no-drain acid wash for their p-sheen. The host of the show recommended that they use a product called Magic Jacks Magenta. Has anyone heard of this and if so, is this a good recommendation? I went to the hosts website and this product is one of their sponsors.

    Finally, during this no drain acid wash, they said it would take 4-7 days, then add soda ash to neutralize the acid. While this acid wash is being performed, I would think flipping the breaker for all the equipment would be good idea to prevent anything from being circulated and frying the heater or pump. Once the acid wash is performed and the soda ash is added, the chemistries tested, they will use the cartridge filtration system to remove the s-ash? I am sure after this the cartridge system will need to be cleaned?

    To conclude, does anyone have any other recommendations or experience in this area that I should make sure we do before, during or after this process? Once performed, I will post back the results.

    Thank you,
    tstex

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: pebblesheen installer recommends a no-drain acid wash

    Is it really that unsightly? A no-drain acid wash turn the whole pool into an acid bath. Yes, it will dissolve any unsightly scale on the pebblesheen. It will also dissolves some of the plaster that holds that stuff to the gunite shell. Probably shorten the lifespan of the finish a few years.

    Yes, they'll kill all the power during the wash. Or should. You'll dissolve the guts on a heater otherwise. The soda ash will dissolve, it just cancels the acid out. They'll be filtering out plaster dust if anything.

    Try the search box up in the right corner for no-drain acid wash and Jack's Magenta. There's probably more info and firsthand experience in there.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: pebblesheen installer recommends a no-drain acid wash

    Thanks Rick - It's not scale at all. It is a pure discoloration issue of the plaster/pebblesheen and how it cured. It's not horrible, but when the pump is not going or at night, it is very noticeable.

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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: pebblesheen installer recommends a no-drain acid wash

    the no-drain wash is much cheaper/easier for the pool builder/finisher. I would push them really hard to just drain the pool and perform the necessary repairs. its more work and money on their end so they aren't going to want to do it. its not your fault it discolored, and I wouldn't accept this method for the reasons Richard noted. the discoloration of the finish is relatively common
    Dan
    9,000 gallon in-ground Saltwater pool, plaster, cartridge filer, 1.0 hp pump, Hayward T-15 SWCG, TF-100
    Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart; Pool School - Test Kits Compared;

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    Re: pebblesheen installer recommends a no-drain acid wash

    we have had tons of rain and if they do a full drain, there are issues w floating pool and possible structural issues...I am more inclined at this point to wait until after the summer to let it cure more to see what happens. it was filled in late Jan of this year, so maybe I need to see what happens until we get the water temps a lot warmer, which in SSE Texas it will get hot. What do you guys think?

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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: pebblesheen installer recommends a no-drain acid wash

    Quote Originally Posted by tstex View Post
    we have had tons of rain and if they do a full drain, there are issues w floating pool and possible structural issues...I am more inclined at this point to wait until after the summer to let it cure more to see what happens. it was filled in late Jan of this year, so maybe I need to see what happens until we get the water temps a lot warmer, which in SSE Texas it will get hot. What do you guys think?
    I would get them to agree to do with drain, its not going to be easy and they are going to fight you. groundwater can be managed with dewatering during the work...but really if its not that bad, you can just wait to do it later if you get them to agree in writing.
    Dan
    9,000 gallon in-ground Saltwater pool, plaster, cartridge filer, 1.0 hp pump, Hayward T-15 SWCG, TF-100
    Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart; Pool School - Test Kits Compared;

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    Re: pebblesheen installer recommends a no-drain acid wash

    The tech for the company came out and explained the whole process. They apply 1gal of Mur Acid for every 2000 gals of water and do it slowly to insure that when they get near a TA = 0, they back off so they do not go lower. They first turn-off the main equipment breaker, bring in their own circulation pump and manage the process on a daily basis. They also add the Magic Jack's as well.

    He said the idea is to slowly increase the curing/dyhydration of the plaster at a very slow rate. He said this could take 4-8 days and it all depends on how the discoloration issues resolve. I asked him about a drain and acid wash. He said that when the plaster/pebblesheen was first shot, the muratic-acid wash is quite effective to give the pebblesheen a darker more uniform look. However, not that the pool has cured some, a drain acid wash would only hit the areas that are applied and some need it a lot more than others. He agreed that there are some applicators that use much more Acid/gallons of water and that can have negative effectives to the external strength of the plaster. He was adamant that their process is done slowly and once they get near a TA of 0, they stop. There is no way to measure a -TA, so this is why it is done slowly and w conservative amts.

    As far as a cost to them, having someone come 3-4 times per day for 4-8 days, including Sat & Sun, and having equipment onsite the whole time, at least to me, seems more expensive and time consuming than when they did the initial acid watch which took about 1.5-2hrs to acid wash the entire pool.

    Finally, he said he would start when we had a good stretch of 10-20% chances of rain bc I told him I did not want the solution touching my travertine tile line, just for safe measures. My travertine is sealed, but should I be worrying about a gal acis/2000 gal of pool water. My pool and spa combined is about 15K [Cl-based]. As of this minute, Houston and surrounding counties are expecting 6-8 inches of rain w some areas getting 10-15". We recently had 10", so I am very apprehensive of draining the pool now.

    To conclude, I have this whole week to decide bc as of now, nothing is going to happen this week w 70-90-100-80-70-50 chances of rain per day for M-Sat, respectively.

    Thanks again for everyone's feedback and help,
    tstex

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