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Thread: Borates

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    Borates

    What is the consensus on this site regarding adding borates? Is it something to consider and what benefits would it provide?


    25x16 rectangular in ground pool with vinyl liner (14,000 gal). Sta-Rite sand filter. 1HP single speed Max-E-Pro pump. Pool owner since 2013.

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: Borates

    google....lot's of threads
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Borates

    Borates - Why and How

    I personally don't bother.
    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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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Borates

    I like borates for water feel and help with slowing pH rise. Our pH tends to rise quite a bit. And it seems like there are less bugs. Richard's link gives good info.
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Borates

    This isn't really a "popularity contest" type question - you shouldn't add borates just because everyone else does. There are specific reasons to add it if you'd like to, but it is not necessary. The biggest impact borates will have is on pH and acid demand. If your pH is stable and your acid use is to your liking, then there's really no reason to add them other than subjective reasons. I will say this though, if you have a salt-water chlorine generator, borates can have a HUGE impact on cell scaling. Because borates cut down on pH rise inside the cell by almost half, one can expect to have a lot less scaling problems inside the cell and it reduces the need to clean the cell frequently.
    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Borates

    Very interesting. I haven't needed to clean my SWG cell ever and we are starting our 6th swim season with it. I attributed it to maintaining my CSI closely between -0.3 and 0 to prevent scale in my pool. Sounds like the borates are also helping my cause.
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Borates

    Quote Originally Posted by pooldv View Post
    Very interesting. I haven't needed to clean my SWG cell ever and we are starting our 6th swim season with it. I attributed it to maintaining my CSI closely between -0.3 and 0 to prevent scale in my pool. Sounds like the borates are all also helping my cause.
    Borates in salt water have a pKa of ~9.0 (9.2 for pure water) and so when the cell is generating, there is huge amount of H2 gas liberated which causes the pH to rise. The presence of a strong buffer like borates will limit that pH rise to the low to mid- 9's where, without borates, the pH inside the cell can easily exceed 10. This is why, even with balanced water in the bulk of the pool, you can still get scaling inside of the salt cell as the pH skyrockets and carbonates are no longer stable in solution. Periodic current reversal form the cell's power supply helps to keep scale formation to a minimum as does low CSI water, BUT nothing helps more than limiting pH rise through chemical processes. Since borates will not form any solid calcium compounds at normal pH levels (even those higher levels inside the cell), the borate buffering is very effective.
    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Borates

    I read that adding borates helps with keeping pH stable. That is why I started researching. I was having to add acid at least weekly...sometimes more last swim season. Then started seeing there could be other benefits. Thought I would come here for some opinions.


    25x16 rectangular in ground pool with vinyl liner (14,000 gal). Sta-Rite sand filter. 1HP single speed Max-E-Pro pump. Pool owner since 2013.

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