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Thread: Proteam Supreme dosage

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Proteam Supreme dosage

    I am working on adding Proteam Supreme calculations to my Pool Calculator. However, Chem Geek's spreadsheet and Proteams's dosage chart disagree by nearly 20%. To raise borates by 50 ppm in 50,000 gallons, Proteam says to use 168 lbs of their product (which is 99.5+% sodium tetraborate pentahydrate). Chem Geek's spreadsheet gives 2249 oz, or 140.56 lbs, a difference of 19.5%.

    Proteam and Chem Geek agree quite closely on the ratio of Supreme to muriatic acid required to maintain PH.

    I am wondering if perhaps Proteam has raised the numbers in their dosage chart to try and take account of splash out, or something like that.
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    I have followed Proteams dosage chart and tested borate levels with their drop test for borates and found it to be within the ballpark. I have not really used chemgeek's speadsheet so I cannot comment on that. I will note that the dosage error in Proteam's chart does increase as the dose gets larger but the actual error also becomes less significant as dosage increases if you are following me (in other words the dosage error is less significant when you are looking at their dosage for a 30k pool vs. a 8k pool. The error is because of their rounding the dose to easily measurable amounts.)

    Also, Supreme plus does not need the addition of acid since it is a ph neutral mix of borax and boric acid.

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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    There's Proteam Supreme which is the Sodium Tetraborate Pentahydrate and is not pH balanced and then there is Proteam Supreme Plus which is mostly Boric Acid with a little Sodium Tetraborate Pentahydrate so is more pH balanced. I think Jason is referring to the former. Jason, I assume you selected the pentahydrate version and not the decahydrate in the spreadsheet.
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    I am currently working on Supreme, not Supreme Plus, I selected pentahydrate, and I took account of the rounding error. The results are consistently higher by around 20% across the entire chart, with additional variations because of Proteam's rounding to the nearest pound. I don't think that a 20% error could be read reliably by the usual test strips. A level of 50 plus 20% give 60, while the test strips appear to be +-20 at best, but I don't have much experience with those particular test strips.

    My favorite theory, is that they are telling you to add extra so that after the normal seasonal water replacement for splash out and backwashing you will still have averaged around the target level. On the other hand, it isn't clear to me that we would be able to detect a 20% error in Chem Geek's spreadsheet (as long as it was consistent between pentahydrate and decahydrate), given that everyone is using test strips.

    I have also been searching for other manufacturers instructions. Many places just say to add 1 to 2 lbs per 1,000 gallons (2 lbs per 1,000 gallons gives you a borate level of about 35). However, these instructions for Bioguard Optimizer Plus agree with Chem Geek to within one or two percent (which is perfect agreement in this kind of situation). Simplicity/Omni Maximizer says to add 15 to 23 lbs per 10,000 gallons, but they don't say what borate level they are aiming for (28 to 40 by Chem Geek's spreadsheet).
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Don't mean to hijack here but what is the shelflife of the product? I've got some in my shed that's about 3 season's old...is it any good still?
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Borates are very stable, your older container should be fine.
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    FYI, dosing for supreme and supreme plus are the same.

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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Quick question (almost on topic ) What's the difference between the Supreme Plus and the 'Winter Set' they sell? (other than a packet of ascorbic acid is included in the winter product)

    The reason for asking is that if, as I suspect, it's the same stuff, one might be able to pick up the Winter Set at a discount in the spring and save some $.
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    If you really want to save money on Supreme Plus, buy boric acid from somewhere like the Chemistry Store for $1.85/lb. Compare that to Supreme Plus at say Pool Geeks for $3.51/lb. Boric acid is a very mild acid. If your PH tends to drift up you can probably just add it. If you want something that is PH neutral, you need to add one pound of borax for every 9 1/2 pounds of boric acid.

    Of course the least expensive solution is borax, though not by as much as you might think. Borax is around $0.80/lb, but you need 1.5 times as much, so $1.25/lb equivalent. But then you need to add in the cost of the muriatic acid, which is going to cost perhaps another $0.45/lb equivalent, for a total of $1.65 for the equivalent of 1 lb of boric acid.

    Of course all of this ignores shipping costs.
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    I am going to say that the main reason I use Supreme plus now is because of the convenience factor. It's worth the price to me to be able to just measure and dump and not worry about anything else. (And remember, I was the one who started all this borate 'nonsense' over at PoolFourm to see if they really worked or not and that's where Chemgeek and I figured out the initial dosage levels for 20 mule team! Back then everyone was very skeptical.)
    YMMV, but for me it's really worth the extra expense for the Supreme plus.

    (BTW, Richard, have you ever gotten around to putting borates in your pool? )

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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Quote Originally Posted by waste
    Quick question (almost on topic ) What's the difference between the Supreme Plus and the 'Winter Set' they sell? (other than a packet of ascorbic acid is included in the winter product)
    Best I can tell is the addition of the stain remover but there might be some other subtle differences.

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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Quote Originally Posted by waterbear
    FYI, dosing for supreme and supreme plus are the same.
    :
    (BTW, Richard, have you ever gotten around to putting borates in your pool? :mrgreen: )
    The dosing for 50 ppm Borates using 20 Mule Team Borax (sodium tetraborate decahydrate) is 36.8 pounds in 10,000 gallons. The dosing for Proteam Supreme (sodium tetraborate pentahydrate) is 28.1 pounds. Either one requires about 35.3 cups of full-strength Muriatic Acid (31.45% Hydrochloric Acid) to balance the pH. The dosing for Boric Acid is 23.9 pounds and it does not require very much pH adjustment and this should also be roughly the amount of Proteam Supreme Plus that is required. So it's not exactly the same as Proteam Supreme and results in a difference of around 8 ppm Borates. Of course, that's not a big deal.

    I plan on adding borates to my pool this season. I'm diluting my water with winter rains since my salt level (and phosphate level) has risen over the years. The salt was a test, but my wife didn't particularly notice much difference so I'm getting things back to more of a baseline before adding the Borates.

    Richard
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek

    I plan on adding borates to my pool this season.
    Why have I heard this one before?
    (Just giving you some friendly grief, Richard! Put in the borax already, you and your wife will LOVE it. How many years have I been trying to convince you now? )

    BTW, MSDS for supreme plus indicates it is not boric acid but, rather, a mixture of sodium tetraborate and boric acid.
    http://www.poolspachemicals.com/files/SUPREMEPLUS.pdf

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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Quote Originally Posted by waterbear
    BTW, MSDS for supreme plus indicates it is not boric acid but, rather, a mixture of sodium tetraborate and boric acid.
    http://www.poolspachemicals.com/files/SUPREMEPLUS.pdf
    They don't give the relative quantities, but to be pH balanced it needs to be mostly Boric Acid. To not change the pH from 7.5, the product needs to be 94.6% boric acid and 5.4% sodium tetraborate pentahydrate. If one uses 20 Mule Team Borax, then the percentage needs to be 93.0% boric acid and 7.0% 20 Mule Team Borax. All of these percentages are by weight.
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    I am a little confused by all the names. I gather Boric acid is a "dry acid" type substance, but apparently not very acidic? Does the boric acid add "borates" also, or is the borate concentration coming from the Borax only, and the boric acid is just another option for reducing the pH rise caused by Borax? Or do both contribute borates?
    Also, the fancy named things, like Proteam supreme plus and Bioguard Optimizer Plus- do they add anything else, or are they just combinations of Borax and possibly boric acid?
    I have been experimenting with adding Borates slowly- using Borax and Sodium Bisulfate (is that what is commonly called "dry acid"?) I do not know what my current level is, as I do not have borate test strips yet, but from what I have added based on the pool calculator, it cannot be any higher than 15. Plus, I have been in the process of reducing CYA over the winter, which means that I am diluting the borates at the same time. I have the TF-100 test, and the rest of my numbers are pretty good, with a little tendency for pH to drift up to 7.8, while I prefer it closer to 7.5.
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    There are a number of chemicals that add borates to the water. Sodium tetraborate decahydrate, sodium tetraborate pentahydrate, and boric acid are the three most common. They are sold under a wide variety of brand names. Borax, ProTeam Supreme, BioGuard Optimizer Plus, Poollife Endure, ProTeam Supreme Plus, Haviland Salt Support, and Omni/Guardex/Simplicity Maximizer are some of the more common brand names.

    All of the chemicals and products I mentioned are used to raise the borate level. There are yet other products that raise the borate level and do other things at the same time as well. One common combination is borates, salt, and CYA, all three of which go down when water is replaced.

    Boric acid is a weak acid. That means that you can add quite a lot of it and the PH won't go down very much. Boric acid is normally sold as a dry powder. Borax and sodium tetraborate pentahydrate, both also usually sold as dry powders, are fairly strong bases. You don't need to add all that much to raise the PH. All three add borates to the water.

    Sodium bisulfate is often called dry acid. It will lower the PH, but it doesn't affect the borate level at all.
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Thanks, that helps. The names get confusing.
    On the pool calculator, I am not seeing a calculation for boric acid. Richard (chem geek) seems to be saying about 24 lbs of either boric acid or proteam supreme plus per 10K gallon. Am I reading that right? And with that much boric acid, if I use boric acid, will I still need to add some Borax to counter pH drop?
    Also, a note on price. The $1.85 per lb on Boric acid from the chemistry store does not include shipping. I checked with shipping and it brings my price up to $2.97 per lb for a 15 lb container to my zip code in Texas. That goes down some as the amount goes up ($2.65 for 30lbs).
    Proteam supreme plus at poolgeek is $3.51 per lb with free shipping, which is not hard to achieve, since they give free shipping for over $100 purchase. I noticed pool geek also sells two types of borate test strips- the cheaper aqua chek and much more expensive (about 3x price) for proteam supreme strips. Is there any reason to shell out for the proteam strips?
    28 ft round Doughboy Sand Dollar II AGP, Aug 2008: 4 ft shallow, 6ft deep end: 24K gal approx Hayward Power-Flo Matrix
    1&1/2-HP 2-SPD Pump, Hayward 27-Inch Sand Filter with a little DE -(2) 4ftx20ft Solar Bear AGP Panels w/ Goldline auto-controller, 50ppm Borates And some day, maybe this year, a DECK!!!

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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    24 lbs of broic acid will raise the borate level by 50 in 10,000 gallons. The total PH reduction won't be all that large, perhaps .2 or .3 .If your PH tends to drift up anyway and your starting PH is 7.5 or higher, you could simply not bother to balance the PH after adding the boric acid. If you do want to balance the PH, you will need to add just under 2 lbs of broax after adding the boric acid.

    Boric acid is not currently supported by my Pool Calculator. Hopefully I will get around to adding support for boric acid soon (but I can't promise anything).
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Just FYI. Technically, as Jason said, Boric Acid is a weak acid and at a pH near 7.5 it's a very weak acid. Basically, when you add borates to the pool, regardless of source and after you pH balance the water, you end up with 98% Boric Acid and 2% Borate Ion. We just call this all borates even though technically it's mostly boric acid in the pool water.

    Richard
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    Re: Proteam Supreme dosage

    Quote Originally Posted by amjohn
    I noticed pool geek also sells two types of borate test strips- the cheaper aqua chek and much more expensive (about 3x price) for proteam supreme strips. Is there any reason to shell out for the proteam strips?
    They are identical and neither is great. Get the LaMotte strips, much easier to read!

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