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Thread: METAL STAINS.........

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    METAL STAINS.........

    I have a couple of metal stains on the floor of my pool. They are not that noticable and I am kind of intimadated by the acid type fixes I've read about. Can someone give me step by step directions on fixing this problem? Is this something that should be left to a pool pro? Please HELP................THANKS AGAIN.
    25,000 gallon....36x18....inground vinyl....hayward 1 1/2 h.p. pump.....pentair de filter

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    PVille's Avatar
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    I have had these in the past (got them again this year). The process to clean them up is not that complicated or dangerous and is something you can do. In fact, ALL the maintenenance your pool requires (cleaning, chemicals opening/closing) can be performed by the average homeowner if you are willing to spend some time reading and educating yourself. The big benefit is the more you learn the easier it is to maintain your pool.

    There are people on the forum that can provide you much greater detail but I'll get you started.

    There are basically two products you will need; a metal sequestering agent and some ascorbic acid (aka Vitamin C, Ascorb-X). The labels on the products will give you more detail but here is the basic procedure (from memory).

    1. Lower ph to around 7.0, lower chlorine to near zero
    2. Add ascorbic acid to dissolve stains and leave pump running. The stains will lift like magic in a day or so.
    3. Add metal sequestering agent to pool to trap dissolved metals. The bottom of pool will have piles of something that looks like dirt when the product is working (vacuum out) for several days.
    4. Bring ph and chlorine up slowly (24 hours?).
    5. Whole process took me a couple of days last time.

    Last spring I took a shortcut.

    1. Took an old cotton sock and poured some ascorbic acid in it.
    2. Tied the sock to the end of my vacuum pool with nylon tie wraps.
    3. Held the sock on top of the stains for a few minutes until it was dissolved.

    Good Luck
    In ground 15 X 33 10,400 gal. Fiberglass
    Two Returns, Two main drains, One skimmer
    Aqua Logic SWG, Hayward TriStar 1.5HP
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    Thanks for your reply. Where would I buy these products the pool store? I like the sock idea will I still need a sequestering agent? THANKS
    25,000 gallon....36x18....inground vinyl....hayward 1 1/2 h.p. pump.....pentair de filter

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    Do your stains look at all like the pics in this thread? Many people confuse metal stains in a vinyl liner with organic stains.... we need to determine what yours are before you go thru an acid process.

    Polyquat 60 algaecide should also be used in the acid process- I would say it should be part of step 1. Adding PQ60 will consume chlorine so add it first. But first, check out this thread:

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/post98897.html#p98897

    Can you rub or hold a chlorine tablet on your stain to see if it fades? If it fades it's organic, and higher FC levels for awhile will make them fade on their own.

    Do the same with a Vitamin C tablet, if they fade they are metal. (This may not work if it's copper staining.)
    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
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    I've held and scrubbed with a puck and no change. I'm certain they are metal. But I've heard metal stains on vinyl are near impossible to remove. any thoughts? THANKS
    25,000 gallon....36x18....inground vinyl....hayward 1 1/2 h.p. pump.....pentair de filter

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    Quote Originally Posted by tamhor
    I've held and scrubbed with a puck and no change. I'm certain they are metal. But I've heard metal stains on vinyl are near impossible to remove. any thoughts? THANKS
    Copper stains yes.

    Try this tip (from a different thread regarding staining):

    Quote Originally Posted by waterbear
    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    Also, I believe that blue/green copper stains will tend to change color when exposed to Vitamin C, at least most of the time.
    Yes but the brown to black ones don't. A good test would be to take an old cotton sock and fill it with dry acid and then let it sit on one of the stains for about 30 minutes to see if there is any change.
    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: METAL STAINS.........

    So I should use dry acid instead of absorbic acid in the sock ?
    25,000 gallon....36x18....inground vinyl....hayward 1 1/2 h.p. pump.....pentair de filter

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    That is a good question. I don't know? I just steal ideas from the other Mods.
    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: METAL STAINS.........

    O.K. THANKS
    25,000 gallon....36x18....inground vinyl....hayward 1 1/2 h.p. pump.....pentair de filter

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    The first test to do is to take a couple of vitamin C tablets, but them in a sock and rest that on a stained area for 30 seconds. If the stain lightens significantly or goes away then it is most likely an iron stain and can be removed with an ascorbic acid treatment.
    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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    Guest

    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    The problem with that ascorbic acid treatment is that you are opening yourself up to numerous other problems. In order for the stains to fully dissappear you will have to keep your chlorine low which puts you at risk for algae and other problems. Also, can't swim in your pool for a while with the chlorine so low. You will need to use an algaecide and this will cause your water to foam.

    If you've got lots of stains like I did last year, i would recommend you do the ascorbic acid thing one time only. If the stains come back, or if you just have a few stains - just spot treat them with the sock.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    The ascorbic acid treatment is kind of a pain, but if it gets rid of the stains most people feel it is worth it.

    Not all algaecides foam up. We recommend using a polyquat based algaecide, which will not foam.

    If you catch returning stains quickly enough, adding more sequestrant will usually remove them.
    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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    Guest

    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    It looks like my pool was closed with a foam-type algaecide. How long before the foaming goes away? I'll make sure to have the Polyquat-based algaecide next time I do a Vitamin-C treatment.




    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    The ascorbic acid treatment is kind of a pain, but if it gets rid of the stains most people feel it is worth it.

    Not all algaecides foam up. We recommend using a polyquat based algaecide, which will not foam.

    If you catch returning stains quickly enough, adding more sequestrant will usually remove them.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    It can take up to a week at normal chlorine levels before the foaming stops. Higher chlorine levels will speed it up slightly, but not very much.
    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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    Guest

    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    So the next obvious question: Why would anyone use an algacide that foams? Is it cheaper?

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    Yes, the foaming algaecides are significantly cheaper. Most of them smell bad and attract insects along with the foaming.
    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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    How to treat with Ascorbic Acid

    Should pump be running in recirculate mode while doing the vitamin C treatment?
    I've read from some instructions that it should be left in circulate mode, not through the filter.
    Some instructions say to keep pump off for a while to allow acid to settle in the pool? Any ideas on what is best?

    Is $8.50-$9.00 per lb a good price for ascorbic acid?
    My local Vitamin Store, Vitamin Cottage carries bulk ascorbic acid for about $8.50-$9.00 a pound, significantly cheaper than the brand-name stuff the pool store carries. There maybe be cheaper brands, but unfortunately, the brand name products don't label the bottles so you know whether or you are getting ascorbic acid or some other ingredients that won't be as effective.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: METAL STAINS.........

    Yes, that is a good price, right around the least expensive I see on the Internet right now.

    I don't think that recirculate vs filter makes much of a difference.

    Turning off the pump for a little while while you are applying the ascorbic acid can give you better control over where it is applied most strongly. If your stains are everywhere then it is better to keep the pump running. It doesn't make a huge difference, but turning off the pump sometimes gives you more control.
    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: METAL STAINS.........

    Quote Originally Posted by rbdeli
    The problem with that ascorbic acid treatment is that you are opening yourself up to numerous other problems. In order for the stains to fully dissappear you will have to keep your chlorine low which puts you at risk for algae and other problems. Also, can't swim in your pool for a while with the chlorine so low. You will need to use an algaecide and this will cause your water to foam.

    If you've got lots of stains like I did last year, i would recommend you do the ascorbic acid thing one time only. If the stains come back, or if you just have a few stains - just spot treat them with the sock.
    If you follow the procedure the way we recommend doing it you will have minimal problems. If you don't then stain removal is problematic!
    ascorbic-treatment-to-rid-pool-of-metal-stains-t2298.html

    If you note, we recommend only Polyquat 60 and to linear quats (which foam).

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