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Thread: Liquidator issues

  1. Back To Top    #1

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    Liquidator issues

    After reading some of the positive (and not so positive) posts on the Liquidator, I decided to get one for myself. I've had it plumbed into my circulation for about six weeks now. As an overall evaluation, I have to say that its been more trouble than its worth. That being said - I'm not giving up on it yet. It may take some tweaking, but I really want to work thru the problems I'm having with it.

    My LQ worked flawlessly for the first 2 weeks. Then the WS came. Almost overnight, the tubing, the flowmeter, the valves froze with a crystalized substance that had the texture of coarse salt. I took apart and cleaned everything in acid. Since then I can't get the flow to more than 2. I'm planning a 3/8" conversion to increase the flow. I hope that will also allow those large crystals to pass thru to the filter.

    I have two questions for the forum.

    1) After a few WS incidents, my pool maintenance guy started adding acid (diluted 50/50) thru the skimmer. This seems to keep the crystals from freezing up the valves & flow meter. Is it okay to pour acid into the skimmer - even if its diluted?

    2) The flow meter seems to be a real problem. Is it really necessary? When I re-plumb with 3/8" I'm eliminating the OUT check valve. Shall I get rid of the flow meter too?

    BTW I use 12% bleach.

    I'd also like to add. Before my pool guy started adding the acid thru the skimmer. The WS on the OUT float caused it not to close when the system was off. As a result -- my pump lost prime. Unfortunately, I was NOT around when the system turned on an the pump had a "meltdown".

    Incidentally, this is my 1st post to the forum. Hello to all of you & I look forward to your replies.

    Buzz.
    18k gl white plaster pool/spa
    48sq ft FNS Plus DE filter
    3/4hp WhisperFlo circ. pump
    MasterTemp 400
    4gl Liquidator
    full sun in the Calif. desert

  2. Back To Top    #2

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    Re: Liquidator issues

    I just purchased on about 6 weeks ago. AT this point, no WS although the lines are discolored white. Haven't upgraded to 3/8. The one thing I noticed is the bleach consumption for me has gone up considerably since last year. I kept track of the walmart bottles per month last year and compared it to this year with the liquidator. Month for month I've used at least 3-4 more bottles a month. AT this point It's not cost effective to run it. I still can try some more tinkering with it and will give it another month.
    12x24 AGP, 10k, 1 hp 2 speed Waterway pump, Hayward C900 Cartridge filter, Polaris 65, maintained by Walmart's 6% Bleach.

  3. Back To Top    #3
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Liquidator issues

    desert Buzz, welcome to TFP!

    Some people have had success in adjusting their chemistry to avoid WS issues, others haven't. Adding borates seems to help.
    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

  4. Back To Top    #4

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    Re: Liquidator issues

    I should have included my test results in my 1st post.
    FC 4 (only because I add bleach manually - the LQ can't keep up)
    CC 0
    Ph 7.2
    TA 70
    CH 240
    CYA 30
    tmp 86

    My numbers are right-on target. Will adding borates mess with my TA?

    Buzz.
    18k gl white plaster pool/spa
    48sq ft FNS Plus DE filter
    3/4hp WhisperFlo circ. pump
    MasterTemp 400
    4gl Liquidator
    full sun in the Calif. desert

  5. Back To Top    #5
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Liquidator issues

    Adding borates will raise TA just a little bit, somewhere around five ppm.
    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

  6. Back To Top    #6
    Water_man's Avatar
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    Re: Liquidator issues

    Hi desert Buzz. Welcome to TFP, which hosts the largest online LQ community. I suggest not to give up too quickly on a very efficient and cost effective pool gadget such as the LQ. Your post is quoted in black, my response in blue.

    My LQ worked flawlessly for the first 2 weeks. Then the WS came. Almost overnight, the tubing, the flowmeter, the valves froze with a crystalized substance that had the texture of coarse salt.


    Having WS doesn't automatically imply that you'll have flow or performance problems. Did you have any flow problems before you took the system apart and acid washed it? Last year I had WS during the 4 month season and had no flow/performance problems whatsoever.

    I took apart and cleaned everything in acid. Since then I can't get the flow to more than 2.

    This means that something went wrong in the process. Maybe the cleaning wasn't thorough and some narrow passage got blocked by a loose particle. Otherwise it's hard to find a logical explanation for reduced flow after acid wash. I recommend changing the flow control valve by a larger one.

    1) After a few WS incidents, my pool maintenance guy started adding acid (diluted 50/50) thru the skimmer. This seems to keep the crystals from freezing up the valves & flow meter. Is it okay to pour acid into the skimmer - even if its diluted?

    50% diluted MA (I assume this was your acid) is still a very strong acid. If you keep doing it you'll ruin your pump.

    2) The flow meter seems to be a real problem. Is it really necessary?

    Yes. It helps you to control your flow in order to adjust the FC level. The injected FC depends on the level of bleach in the LQ which changes all the time.

    When I re-plumb with 3/8" I'm eliminating the OUT check valve. Shall I get rid of the flow meter too?

    My experience (and others') taught me that both check valves are needed for smooth operation and avoiding air in the system when the pump shuts off. Still, each system has its own "personality".
    Your best bet is trial and error. Replace the CVs by plastic tubing connector, not a metal one!
    However, the original check valves are not optimal, to say the least. Look at the 3/8" conversion post and order the check valves mentioned there.
    Did you make sure that the two threads of the flow indicator don't leak air? Did you put a heavy load of Teflon tape/paste there?


    BTW I use 12% bleach.

    6% bleach may solve your problem because, as chem geek showed in his chemical analysis post regarding the matter, a higher pH is one of the culprits and 12% bleach will give you a higher pH than 6% at the top LQ water level. I'm using 12% now as compared to 6% last year and so far (3 weeks or so into the season) no WS, but I also added 50 ppm borates. It won't hurt to try borates. If it doesn't help, at least you'd have a better quality water. I recommend chem geek's dosage using boric acid from the Chem Store and borax. Check the post at the "deep end".

    I'd also like to add. Before my pool guy started adding the acid thru the skimmer. The WS on the OUT float caused it not to close when the system was off. As a result -- my pump lost prime. Unfortunately, I was NOT around when the system turned on an the pump had a "meltdown".

    I'm suggesting not to have your pool guy be involved, unless he's experienced with LQs. Search duraleigh's and rabbit's posts on the float problems.

    Incidentally, this is my 1st post to the forum. Hello to all of you & I look forward to your replies.
    This is my ticket for Heaven (when all's working..) :
    22k Gal gunite IGP, 38 SF Anthony DE filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump
    380k BTU Raypak Natural Gas Heater (Model RP405A) and solar cover
    8 gal Liquidator w/ 12% bleach, Dolphin Diagnostic Advantage robotic cleaner. 3800 ppm salt, 50 ppm borates.

  7. Back To Top    #7
    Water_man's Avatar
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    Re: Liquidator issues

    Quote Originally Posted by cd
    I just purchased on about 6 weeks ago. AT this point, no WS although the lines are discolored white. Haven't upgraded to 3/8. The one thing I noticed is the bleach consumption for me has gone up considerably since last year. I kept track of the walmart bottles per month last year and compared it to this year with the liquidator. Month for month I've used at least 3-4 more bottles a month. AT this point It's not cost effective to run it. I still can try some more tinkering with it and will give it another month.
    It's hard to figure out the reason for your high bleach consumption without knowing exactly all your test results and FC levels this year as compared to last year. Maybe you weren't so dilligent in adding bleach as needed on a daily basis last year? Maybe your CYA level was different? In addition, one thing comes to mind. Is your LQ placed in the shade? If not, spray paint the bottom part in order to minimize decomposition. Also, does the water in the LQ get very warm? You're in Texas, after all.
    This is my ticket for Heaven (when all's working..) :
    22k Gal gunite IGP, 38 SF Anthony DE filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump
    380k BTU Raypak Natural Gas Heater (Model RP405A) and solar cover
    8 gal Liquidator w/ 12% bleach, Dolphin Diagnostic Advantage robotic cleaner. 3800 ppm salt, 50 ppm borates.

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    Re: Liquidator issues

    True it's been hot a heck lately. This week it stayed aroud 100. The LQ does get some sun in the afternoon and pool temp in the evening is 86-87.

    latest numbers this morning
    FC 5
    CC 0
    TA 90
    PH 7.4
    CYA 40

    The only thing that is different from last year is the beginning summer temps. hotter this year than last, so that could be the culprit.

    Ist there any particular color to spray the LQ to block the sun?

    Thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by Water_man
    Quote Originally Posted by cd
    I just purchased on about 6 weeks ago. AT this point, no WS although the lines are discolored white. Haven't upgraded to 3/8. The one thing I noticed is the bleach consumption for me has gone up considerably since last year. I kept track of the walmart bottles per month last year and compared it to this year with the liquidator. Month for month I've used at least 3-4 more bottles a month. AT this point It's not cost effective to run it. I still can try some more tinkering with it and will give it another month.
    It's hard to figure out the reason for your high bleach consumption without knowing exactly all your test results and FC levels this year as compared to last year. Maybe you weren't so dilligent in adding bleach as needed on a daily basis last year? Maybe your CYA level was different? In addition, one thing comes to mind. Is your LQ placed in the shade? If not, spray paint the bottom part in order to minimize decomposition. Also, does the water in the LQ get very warm? You're in Texas, after all.
    12x24 AGP, 10k, 1 hp 2 speed Waterway pump, Hayward C900 Cartridge filter, Polaris 65, maintained by Walmart's 6% Bleach.

  9. Back To Top    #9
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    Re: Liquidator issues

    CD:
    I used a spary can of white Krylon Fusion. It dries fast. You can put a vertical 1 1/2" strip of tape before you paint on the side not facing the sun and pull it out after you paint. This way you'll be able to see your bleach level without lifting the lid.
    What about the temp of the water in the LQ, How much is it?
    I once left bleach bottles out in the sun. Bad.
    This is my ticket for Heaven (when all's working..) :
    22k Gal gunite IGP, 38 SF Anthony DE filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump
    380k BTU Raypak Natural Gas Heater (Model RP405A) and solar cover
    8 gal Liquidator w/ 12% bleach, Dolphin Diagnostic Advantage robotic cleaner. 3800 ppm salt, 50 ppm borates.

  10. Back To Top    #10

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    Re: Liquidator issues

    The temp in the liquadator was 83 and the pool temp was 86.
    12x24 AGP, 10k, 1 hp 2 speed Waterway pump, Hayward C900 Cartridge filter, Polaris 65, maintained by Walmart's 6% Bleach.

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Water_man's Avatar
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    Re: Liquidator issues

    CD: Try using the minimum FC which in your case, according to the chart, is 3 ppm. I also use minimum FC and everything's fine, although I added 50 ppm borates, so it's bot exactly an "apples to apples" comparison.
    Any improvement on bleach consumption with the spary painting?
    This is my ticket for Heaven (when all's working..) :
    22k Gal gunite IGP, 38 SF Anthony DE filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump
    380k BTU Raypak Natural Gas Heater (Model RP405A) and solar cover
    8 gal Liquidator w/ 12% bleach, Dolphin Diagnostic Advantage robotic cleaner. 3800 ppm salt, 50 ppm borates.

  12. Back To Top    #12

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    Re: Liquidator issues

    Thanks to everyone who offered advice and suggestions regarding my LQ issues. I have acquired the necessary parts and I am still planning a 3/8" line conversion. I would like to add borates as well. The plaster on my pool is only three months old. The pool still has a high acid demand from the new plaster, should I have any concerns about adding borates at this time?
    18k gl white plaster pool/spa
    48sq ft FNS Plus DE filter
    3/4hp WhisperFlo circ. pump
    MasterTemp 400
    4gl Liquidator
    full sun in the Calif. desert

  13. Back To Top    #13
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Liquidator issues

    It probably doesn't make any difference, but I would still wait till 30 days after plastering before adding borates.
    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

  14. Back To Top    #14

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    Re: Liquidator issues

    It's been about 4 day since I painted it. I'll let you know in a few more day's if it helped.

    Thanks,
    CD

    Quote Originally Posted by Water_man
    CD: Try using the minimum FC which in your case, according to the chart, is 3 ppm. I also use minimum FC and everything's fine, although I added 50 ppm borates, so it's bot exactly an "apples to apples" comparison.
    Any improvement on bleach consumption with the spary painting?
    12x24 AGP, 10k, 1 hp 2 speed Waterway pump, Hayward C900 Cartridge filter, Polaris 65, maintained by Walmart's 6% Bleach.

  15. Back To Top    #15

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    Re: Liquidator issues

    Thanks for your interest Water man. So far I have added 50ppm borates using waterbears formula of Borax/acid. It was right on! When I completed the process I ended up with a ph of 7.8 -- just had to add 2 add'l qts of acid to bring it down to 7.4. The water feels and looks better. I don't know yet if it has stabilized my ph. Before adding the borates my ph tended to drift up regularly and I had to add about 2qts of acid per week. I've also completed the 3/8" line conversion of my LQ. It was real easy to do and the flow volume is amazing. In fact, after I completed the conversion and filled the LQ with 4 gals of bleach - I left the flow valve wide open and within a half hour it blasted all 4 gallons into the pool! My CL level was nearly 20ppm! That was on Sunday -- I'm waiting for my CL level to come down so I can try it again. I left the LQ online (without bleach) and the valve wide open to keep the flow going thru it. As far as I know, its been functioning properly with out the accumulation of "white stuff" (I haven't been there since the week-end, but my pool maint. guy is monitoring). I'm going to add more bleach to the LQ over the week-end and monitor/regulate the flow so it doesn't over chlorinate the pool. I'll let you know what happens.
    18k gl white plaster pool/spa
    48sq ft FNS Plus DE filter
    3/4hp WhisperFlo circ. pump
    MasterTemp 400
    4gl Liquidator
    full sun in the Calif. desert

  16. Back To Top    #16
    Water_man's Avatar
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    Re: Liquidator issues

    Quote Originally Posted by desert Buzz
    In fact, after I completed the conversion and filled the LQ with 4 gals of bleach - I left the flow valve wide open and within a half hour it blasted all 4 gallons into the pool! My CL level was nearly 20ppm!
    4 gal of bleach in half an hour sounds unreal and way above the expected performance of the LQ. When I had my CYA at 70 last year my flow indicator read flow rate between 3 and 4 and I've never had even half your blast. What was the flow indicator showing when your regulating valve was fully open? Was the black ball within the reading scale or did it shoot up all the way to the top?
    Are you sure you added the bleach through the funnel and did you see a separate yellow bleach solution at the bottom with a clearly defined border separating it from the clear water at the top?
    Was the border below the white/black mark? What was the strength of your bleach? Was it again 12%
    This is my ticket for Heaven (when all's working..) :
    22k Gal gunite IGP, 38 SF Anthony DE filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump
    380k BTU Raypak Natural Gas Heater (Model RP405A) and solar cover
    8 gal Liquidator w/ 12% bleach, Dolphin Diagnostic Advantage robotic cleaner. 3800 ppm salt, 50 ppm borates.

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: Liquidator issues

    I'm not kidding. The black ball on the flow meter was all the way at the top with the valve wide open. I used 4 gallons of Walmart 6% bleach which I added very slowly thru the funnel while the LQ was filling. I can't say that I observed the separation line after adding the bleach - only because I didn't really look for it. Having used the LQ (equipped by the manufacturer) for a couple of months now, I know how much bleach it holds and how to add the bleach to keep it at the bottom of the tank. After adding the bleach and observing that the LQ was filled and functioning, I left it and went in the house. Sometime later (half hour - maybe 45mins) I overheard my guests - who were in the pool - complaining of a "chlorine smell". At that time I checked the LQ and observed NO SEPARATION line. I immediately shut off the valve and tested the CL. It was at 16ppm! I'll keep you apprised of what happens when I try this again over the week-end.
    18k gl white plaster pool/spa
    48sq ft FNS Plus DE filter
    3/4hp WhisperFlo circ. pump
    MasterTemp 400
    4gl Liquidator
    full sun in the Calif. desert

  18. Back To Top    #18

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    Re: Liquidator issues

    Just wanted to post a follow-up to this thread. It's been three months since I completed the 3/8" line conversion on my LQ and added 50ppm of borates to the pool. I've had NO PROBLEMS AT ALL. The LQ has been performing flawlessly. I add 1 or 2 jugs of 6% bleach once or twice a week. The tubing is kind of milky white, but there's no flow problems or crusting on the in/out valves or in the flow meter as I had before the conversion. A few times a week I'll open the valve all the way for about 30 seconds and blast out the tubes, then I turn it way down so the black ball on the flow meter is at about 1. This has kept my pool around 3 -5ppm CL consistently. I haven't needed to shock the pool at all since I started using the Liquidator. To all of you TFP members dealing with WS & flow issues. STICK WITH IT. Add borates, upgrade to 3/8" tubing and adapt the LQ to your particular situation. You'll be glad you did.
    18k gl white plaster pool/spa
    48sq ft FNS Plus DE filter
    3/4hp WhisperFlo circ. pump
    MasterTemp 400
    4gl Liquidator
    full sun in the Calif. desert

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