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Thread: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

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    Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    I bought a new/old Softub last week. Model 300 I believe. Which is part of my problem - I'm not certain of model or year, and there are two different "Softub official" owners manuals I've found so far. One Two.

    The first one says "floating dispensers should never be used. Use of trichlor, bromine or floating chlorine dispensers will void the warranty. Sodium dichlor is the recommended type of sanitizer." - interestingly, my Softub came with a Softub-branded floating dispenser...

    The second one says (paraphrasing) "Both bromine and chlorine are good sanitizers. One option for bromine is a floating dispenser. DO NOT use chlorine pucks (granular only)."

    Both manuals describe a vinyl liner, so that hasn't changed.



    I have two questions as a result of this;
    - Why does Softub recommend bromine when they once stated it would void the warranty.
    - Is it ok to use both granular chlorine and bromine at the same time? I understood from reading these forums (regarding my pool) that they were not compatible?

    I planned to use bromine pucks in a floating dispenser exclusively in the new 'tub - of course keeping an eye on the PH to keep the liner in good shape.
    In-Ground 16'x32' bromine pool., 16.5k GAL | Softub 300

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    needsajet's Avatar
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    Re: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    Nice to meet you via TFP

    This just sounds like a manufacturer that doesn't really understand pool water chemistry and probably has no intention of honoring any warranty claims.

    Trichlor pucks in a floater shouldn't be any problem at all, provided you test and manage your CYA (aka stabilizer, aka cyanuric acid) level. Dichlor is in the same boat, always providing additional CYA along with the chlorine. Bromine is more complex to manage than chlorine and it's more expensive than chlorine, so I wouldn't recommend going that route.

    Chlorinating liquid is the simplest and easiest to manage, so that would be my choice for sanitation.

    I'm guessing you're going to start it up next spring? If so, you might want to use this winter to get a test kit from the USA. You can buy a good kit there in Canada, but there's a company that exploits a monopoly and charges the earth for test kits in Canada. The most often recommended kit is the TF100 from tftestkits.net. If you know someone in America, or have a way to go across the border and pick it up, that's what a lot of Canadian members do.

    When I started out with TFPC, I got a good start with the thread "TFPC for beginners" linked in my signature.
    12k IG salt; glass beads in plaster; K-2006C, K-1766, CCL, and Aussie 4in1 (HTH); Pentair Eco800 1.2HP VS; Zodiac SWC 1.3 lb/day (25 g/hr); 25" filter recycled glass; OKU solar panels; 1/2 HP solar pump; Rebel (Warrior) pool cleaner; FlowViz; prior pool AG 10k | Read Before Posting to get the best possible advice | ... and this helped me a lot!: TFPC for Beginners

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    Re: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    Nice to meet you too needsajet

    I'm not new here, or to spas in general. I started this thread some time ago regarding inflatable spas in freezing temps. Turns out freezing wasn't the issue - it was a crappy product. That tub ended up in the landfill, so I'm trying something a little more quality and better insulated (hopefully). It certainly was cheaper at $300 used (inflatable cost about $800).

    Needless to say, I use my spas in the cold weather - so I'm actually just setting it up now.

    I have a bromine pool so I think I will stick with my bromine floater for sanitizer using bleach as needed and my kick-arse test kit which I also bought as a result of recommendations here.

    I'm not sure that granular chlorine fits with a bromine floater (as suggested by the manufacturer), so I'll skip that as well and hold with bleach and bromine only.
    In-Ground 16'x32' bromine pool., 16.5k GAL | Softub 300

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    Trichlor tablets should not be used for safety reasons - they dissolve very quickly at high temperatures and are very acidic. So you can easily spike the FC to unsafe levels and drop the pH to a point of causing equipment damage. Bromine tablets (BCDMH) are somewhat similar in that they are acidic and can crash the pH/TA. Using sodium bromide to build a bromide bank and then using liquid chlorine (aka, bleach) to activate the bromine is completely acceptable.
    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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    Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    Using sodium bromide to build a bromide bank and then using liquid chlorine (aka, bleach) to activate the bromine is completely acceptable.
    I havenít heard of bromine pucks being an issue in terms of safety. Actually the bromine tabs I use in my pool tend to take a week or so to fully dissolve in the spa.

    I am introducing sodium bromide to build a bank, and had planned to use my bromine pucks for continual sanitizer. The pucks are dimethylhydantoin 94%

    I wish I paid more attention in chemistry but I sense it would not have helped here
    In-Ground 16'x32' bromine pool., 16.5k GAL | Softub 300

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    It’s better to activate the bromine you need from the bromide bank using liquid chlorine rather than pucks. Bromine pucks are better suited for long time intervals between soaks or vacations. Over reliance on pucks causes a build up of DMH in the water which acts a lot like an overstabilized swimming pool - the DMH reduces the effectiveness of the bromine and allows bacteria to grow.
    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: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    In this forum some time ago, I asked about switching my pool from bromine to chlorine. The advice was that itís a complete drain, flush, flush again - and probably not worth it. From that I surmised that they were incompatible. I think thatís where my block is in terms of setting up the proper sanitizer method for the spa.

    I thought bromine is bromine so you stick with it, but bleach (but not liquid chlorine) also works with bromine.

    Iím thinking I got that wrong.
    In-Ground 16'x32' bromine pool., 16.5k GAL | Softub 300

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    Not sure who told you that but it’s wrong. Empty a bromine tub, flush it with water (and use Ahh-some to clean the pipes), then dump that and refill. Not really a huge deal.

    Liquid chlorine and bleach are exactly the same thing. Chlorine oxidizes bromide into bromine. So chlorine is completely ok to use in bromine tub for establishing a specific bromine level. Tablets are better suited for a bromine tub that sees occasional bather loads with long empty intervals.

    If you go to the top of the Spa and Hot Tub subforum, there are stickies on how to use either sanitizer.
    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: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    Seems they clean up the older posts here so I canít say who helped me with the bromine issue before. But to be clear we were talking about my inground pool at the time - not a tub.

    We can go 3 straight days in the spa with 2-3 people each time (30 mins). Then weeks without use. So I think bromine would be suitable by your definition.

    I will mull over the tips/stickies you suggested.

    Thank you.


    In-Ground 16'x32' bromine pool., 16.5k GAL | Softub 300

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    needsajet's Avatar
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    Re: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    Sorry, I mis-read and thought you were talking about the pool rather than a hot tub, and I didn't realize you already had it on bromine. My bad. Matt's got you well covered
    12k IG salt; glass beads in plaster; K-2006C, K-1766, CCL, and Aussie 4in1 (HTH); Pentair Eco800 1.2HP VS; Zodiac SWC 1.3 lb/day (25 g/hr); 25" filter recycled glass; OKU solar panels; 1/2 HP solar pump; Rebel (Warrior) pool cleaner; FlowViz; prior pool AG 10k | Read Before Posting to get the best possible advice | ... and this helped me a lot!: TFPC for Beginners

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    Re: Is Softub mfr confused, or simply being protectionist?

    Quote Originally Posted by needsajet View Post
    Sorry, I mis-read
    Thanks needsajet. The advice I was referring to was at least 2-3 years ago - not yours.
    In-Ground 16'x32' bromine pool., 16.5k GAL | Softub 300

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