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Thread: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

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    Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    Hi all. Just bought a new house a few weeks ago, complete with a pool...first time pool owner/maintainer. Previous owner had it installed in the fall of 2007 and decided to use baquacil. When I moved in, my pool-owner neighbors convinced me chlorine is much better for me. Last week (before I found this site) I visited my local pool store about converting from baqua to chlorine when I opened it. The response I received was "good choice". They gave me a handout about steps to take and told me to use the granular form of calcium hyperchloride. A few days into the process I stumbled across this site and have since switched to liquid bleach (K-Mart down the street has Chlorox 6% on sale right now). I've gone through about 45 gallons of bleach and I think I'm close to being finished, but I have a few questions:

    I've been backwashing about every 2 hours (usually right before I added any bleach)...is this enough? Too much? Pressure is staying low (under 10 psi) but it just seems like there's **** that's getting through. Also, that granular stuff I used at first seems to look like sand just sitting at the bottom of my pool. Been vacuuming to waste throughout the day, but haven't got it all yet as previous owner installed a 20' pool but bought an 18' vacuum hose!

    If my FC levels stay up overnight, (been at 16 for the last 5 hours with 0 CC) can I go ahead and change the sand in my filter tomorrow? I got very helpful advice on this process from the guy at the pool store, and I think I can handle it no problem.

    I've been running the pump on Filter non-stop since I started, except for the occasional minute or two backwash and rinse. Is this correct?

    Doing a lot of reading, I think I understand enough of the chemistry related stuff to keep going, but I'm just not too sure about the pump/filter issues.

    Took a few pictures with my cell phone before I started and once I added the first dose of chlorine. I'll see if I can get them on here soon, along with an after photo (water is now almost clear, except for those tiny little pieces of white crud floating around).

    This looks like a very helpful group, and thanks in advance for any advice.
    Kansas City, MO
    10,000 gal AG round
    Sand Filter
    2 HP motor

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    How are you testing the water?

    How big is your sand filter?

    Is your pump a 2 speed?

    If stuff is getting through, there is the possibility that the sand has channelled. But since you have to replace it anyway for the conversion to be complete, no worries there. I do ask about the 2HP if it is too big for your filter, causing the sand to channel, this could happen again with new sand...

    Backwashing - you note your psi when the filter is clean... and when it rises 6-8 psi you backwash, this is generally, for your filter, maybe more, maybe less. You can feel the return, when clean, when dirty....when the flow is significantly reduced you should backwash.

    Once the FC is holding overnight, you change the sand in the filter and then add CYA. So yes, you are in the home stretch of conversion.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    Welcome,

    You will be glad that you switched.

    Susan
    18x33 AGP, BAQUAPURE 200 lb sandfilter, 2 1/2hp Workhorse pump (2 speed)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    Backwashing that frequently can help speed up the conversion just slightly, but it isn't essential if the pressure isn't rising.
    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: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    Thanks for the replies. My TF-100 test kit just showed up yesterday, which gives me MUCH better results than those test strips I got at the pool store...especially with such high levels of FC. At 4 a.m. I was at 15 FC and then at 7 a.m. I was at 14.5, and still 0 CC - the water never turned back pink.

    I don't see where my pump is a 2 speed...just ON and OFF. This was all here when we moved in, so I assumed the installers knew what they were doing and what pump and filter to put in.

    As far as the filter, I can't see a specific size, but I did see that it requires 250 lbs. of sand if that helps at all. Some quick Googling and it looks like I have a 25" filter with a 3.2 s.f. effective filtration area...does that sound right?

    The filter normally runs about 6 - 8 psi and once or twice I saw it hit 18, but I'll just pay attention to the return and get a feel for where it needs to be.

    Sounds like I need to figure out how to plug my skimmer and return (end of the season I'll put in shut off valves for sure) and start sucking out some sand.
    Kansas City, MO
    10,000 gal AG round
    Sand Filter
    2 HP motor

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    Good, you are right at the end of the conversion. It is time to replace the sand, if you haven't already, and then add CYA. Maintain FC at 15 for one more day and check that the CC level doesn't go back up above 0.5 and you are done.

    I agree that your pump is too large for both your filter and your pool, but I don't think it is likely to cause any problems. Mostly it just wastes electricity.
    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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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    Sounds like it's a 1 speed, you would see a high/low switch on the pump. Good luck with the sand!
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    UPDATE:

    Things are looking good. I replaced the sand which was not a fun job, but still wasn't that bad. I took the FC back up to 15 (it was at 3) and so far it has held for about 3 hours with 0 CC...I'll check again before I go to bed and again in the morning. If it does hold tonight, do I need to let it drop down to normal before I add CYA? It is supposed to be sunny tomorrow so I'm guessing by time I get home from work FC will have dropped anyway.

    I checked ph before I took the FC back up and it was sitting at what looked to be about 6.8. At what point should I start to raise it up?

    As far as the enormous pump for my small pool...does it need to run 24/7? Sounds like I'm in for some high utility bills this summer!

    Thanks again for all of the advice to a newby. I'll see if I can get some pics posted tomorrow.
    Kansas City, MO
    10,000 gal AG round
    Sand Filter
    2 HP motor

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    Go ahead and add CYA right away. You should adjust the PH only after the FC level falls below 10. When the FC level falls, which will probably be sometime tomorrow, go ahead and adjust the PH.

    No, you won't need to run the pump 24/7 for much longer. Keep the pump running all the time till 24 hours after your add CYA. Then you can cut back to something much lower. I would try 8 hours a day and see how that does. Once you get some experience with your pool you can cut the pump run time even shorter and see how that does.
    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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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Questions as I near end of Baqua conversion

    Quote Originally Posted by bigtex
    UPDATE:

    Things are looking good. I replaced the sand which was not a fun job, but still wasn't that bad. I took the FC back up to 15 (it was at 3) and so far it has held for about 3 hours with 0 CC...I'll check again before I go to bed and again in the morning. If it does hold tonight, do I need to let it drop down to normal before I add CYA? It is supposed to be sunny tomorrow so I'm guessing by time I get home from work FC will have dropped anyway.

    I checked ph before I took the FC back up and it was sitting at what looked to be about 6.8. At what point should I start to raise it up?

    As far as the enormous pump for my small pool...does it need to run 24/7? Sounds like I'm in for some high utility bills this summer!

    Thanks again for all of the advice to a newby. I'll see if I can get some pics posted tomorrow.
    Yes, you want the PH to be about 7.2. Use PH UP if you have it, or the cheaper equivalent, Arm & Hammer Washing Soda or Borax, both available in the laundry aisle, to raise it.

    Yes, with no CYA your level will probably be zero when you get home. You can add CYA anytime now that the sand is replaced, regardless of the FC level.

    No need to run the pump 24/7. That would be too much. If it had a low speed that would be okay.

    People determine their ideal run time a variety of ways, you want at least one complete turnover of water, but there are other factors. One way is to start out with 12 hours, perhaps 6 during the day/6 at night or all 12 during the day, and then reduce the run time by an hour till you find the right timeframe. Usually you want the pump running when people are swimming.

    You need to watch your water and look for signs that you aren't getting enough circulation - dullness, cloudyness etc. So if you got down to 4 hours a day and notice the water just didn't sparkle, you would bump it back up to 5-6 see if that improves things, know what I mean?

    Seems like 8 hours is about a general average but every pool is unique.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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