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Thread: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

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    Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    I have converted over to the BBB method this spring. So far, no algae issues, and am maintaining bleach levels at 8ppm with a TF-100 test kit and walmart bleach. However, I travel a lot, and the daily requirement can be cumbersome especially since I have to hand off to my 13-yr old to do it while I am gone.

    I recently met a family that told me about this product called Pool Perfect + PhosFREE. They claim that this product eliminates the phosphates in the water which is an essential ingredient for algae growth. They have been maintaining their pool for several years now with no other chemicals BUT this product - at 8 capfuls once a week. WOW!!! Is this true? Can anyone validate this product for me? Even if I can use it once a week and move to using bleach once a week, that would be an improvement....

    BTW - I am currently adding between 230-250 oz of bleach every day. I did the overnight test and am only losing about 1-1.5ppm overnight, so I just assume that this is a natural loss due to the heat of the Atlanta summer.

    Thanks.
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Quote Originally Posted by rohan
    They have been maintaining their pool for several years now with no other chemicals BUT this product - at 8 capfuls once a week. WOW!!! Is this true? Can anyone validate this product for me? Even if I can use it once a week and move to using bleach once a week, that would be an improvement....

    BTW - I am currently adding between 230-250 oz of bleach every day. I did the overnight test and am only losing about 1-1.5ppm overnight, so I just assume that this is a natural loss due to the heat of the Atlanta summer.

    Thanks.
    I wouldn't swim in their pool.

    Even if the product could prevent algae, it does nothing to sanitize the water. Even the company's web site acknowledges it is only an aid your existing sanitizer. Algae prevention is only one part of the sanitizer's job.

    Here's their advertising:

    By combining Pool Perfect+PHOSfree with your regular sanitizing products you will greatly reduce common pool problems. Many people on this program never use algaecides again...no more green pools!
    As to your chlorine loss, what is your CYA level, and do you use a cover?
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    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Hey Rohan,

    Please post a full set of results so that we can help you better.

    I have no experience with the product you mention but I can tell you that your overnight loss would bordeline indicate the need to shock. You are burning 4-5 ppm of FC per day, based on the amount of bleach you are adding daily, which is somewhat high.

    My guess is that you are just maintaining a pending algae bloom, but then again FC of 8 is pretty high, but I have no idea what your CYA level is. Is 8 your target or is that where your FC ends up after adding bleach? If so your FC may be dropping to as low as 3ppm prior to the bleach addition. Also you are much better off adding bleach in the evening if you are not already doing so...good luck
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Thanks, guys for the quick responses. I just checked by CYA level and it as at 25-30. Back in May, in was at 70. Not sure what could have made such a dramatic change in CYA, except that I had shocked the pool twice in the last month with a product from Bioguard called Burnout Extreme. I did this not so much because I thought I needed to, but because I wanted to get the chlorine levels high enough to withstand 4-5 days without treatment and I had this product in my garage.

    I do not use a cover. And yes, I try to keep the pool at 8ppm. This has worked well for me so far. Ph is 7.5. T/A (last test in May) is somewhere between 150-160 which I know is high, but it doesn't seem to be effecting anything...yet...CH is 220 as of May.

    I understand that Pool Perfect may need additional sanitizers, but wouldn't that be easier that trying to maintain with Chlorine alone daily?
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Phosphate removal is almost always a waste of money. If you maintain proper FC levels, it doesn't matter what your phosphate level is. If you don't maintain proper FC levels then the pool isn't safe to swim in. The other features of Pool Perfect can be handy in specific (rare) situations, but are not needed the vast majority of the time.
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Quote Originally Posted by rohan
    I understand that Pool Perfect may need additional sanitizers, but wouldn't that be easier that trying to maintain with Chlorine alone daily?
    The sanitizer requirement is exactly the same with and without the Pool Perfect. If you maintain the chlorine, you won't have algae, regardless of the use of the additional product. It might give you a little buffer against algae if you allow the chlorine to drop, but that's really treating a symptom, not the problem. It can mask the fact that your pool is unsanitary, since pathogens don't give visual indications of their presence like algae does.

    On the other hand, I don't know of any negative effects of the chemistry in Pool Perfect other than cost and the potential masking of problems. The "Trouble Free" concept would tell you to have your phosphate level tested and add the product only when the test results show a need for it.

    Your daily chlorine usage is at least partly from your low CYA level. Others in your area may be able to give specific numbers, but I'd think you'd want at least 40ppm in your area.
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    The main question was what to do when travelling. Use of a pool cover could cut down your daily chlorine usage so that perhaps you could have chlorine added only twice a week (it seems that a darker more opaque cover would be better in this situation). As already noted, your CYA is on the low side, but you've also got an overnight loss higher than normal so may need to shock the pool to kill what may be growing or to oxidize organics faster that may have built up (again, a pool cover can help if you get a lot of debris in the pool including pollen and leaves).

    If you want an algae preventative in the water as insurance, you could consider adding borates as described here. It may not completely prevent algae if the chlorine level went to zero for an extended period, but it should take the edge off of any such growth.

    Other approaches may work but would require regular expense or have other side effects. The phosphate remover is one that has already been commented on. Another would be PolyQuat 60 algaecide though this would need to be added every week -- if you just add it when you go away from home then this may not completely prevent algae but would take the edge off of any such growth.

    If you are gone for only one week, you could use Trichlor pucks in a floating chlorinator. Though this will increase the CYA level, it won't be by very much, though if you really have 4 ppm FC per day consumption (which, as noted, is high), then after a week the CYA would rise by about 17 ppm. In your case you probably want a higher CYA level anyway so this might be a decent option. Just keep in mind that the Trichlor is acidic so the pH would need to be adjusted accordingly. One week of Trichlor at 4 ppm FC per day would lower the pH from 7.8 to 6.8 if the TA were 100 ppm so adding some 20 Mule Team Borax or some Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda (same as pH Up) mid-week would be required.

    If you are going to be away from home for more than one week, then there's really no way to handle this other than having someone manage your pool at least part of the time.

    Richard
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    I actually tried Phos-free once, back before I found PF and then TFP. I was told the same thing by the pool guy who set up my pool initially - get rid of phosphates, and no algae. So, I bought a phospate test kit, and some Pool Perfect and Phos Free. Added the Phos Free, and then a couple weeks later went to clean my filter, and liked to have never got the Phos Free off of my cartridge. Oh, and I still had algae, because I was using an AquaSmarte system for chlorine, and maintaining it at 1.5 - 2 ppm, according to my test strips. Then I found the forums while doing a search on run times for pumps, and got to reading about properly testing and maintaining my water, and realized I had spent a lot of money that I didn't need to spend on a phosphate test kit, Pool Perfect, and Phos Free.

    'nuff said..
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Sounds like some triclor pucks may be the right thing to do for now to raise the CYA levels. Any other way to raise CYA?

    Longer term, pucks when I'm out the entire week sound like a good idea too. And I'll make sure to add borax when I return from a trip to bring the acid level down a bit. The pool should still be usable at pH levels of 5-6, right?

    Also - what is the proper amounts of pucks to use in the skimmer? Is there a hard relationship between number of pucks and ppm levels? In the past, before I came across this forum, I used to just throw a few pucks into the skimmer (2 each per skimmer), and then just add a few more when they had completely dissolved. Is this the correct application?

    What are the best places to buy pucks? Any brand ok? Like from walmart?
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
    Purex-Triton nautilus NS-36 DE filter;Pentair SM-20-2 multivalve
    MagneTek Centurion Switchless motor 1.5 HP
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    You can use the pucks whenever your CYA is lower than needed, but you are far better off to use an erosion feeder rather than putting them in the skimmer. You can control the feed rate and keep more pucks in the feeder in reserve, and you don't risk damaging your skimmers when the pump is off. If you can deal with increased chlorine consumption when you are home, you'll have a buffer to use the pucks while you are gone. Be warned that the CYA increases faster than you think. My pool gains about 7.5ppm in CYA per week when using pucks.

    The last time I looked at the Walmart pucks, they contained copper. You don't want any that say dual or triple action on them.

    pH levels of 5-6 are way below recommended levels for a pool. You should be between 7 and 8 at all times.
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Didn't know about erosion feeders. Thanks for the tip. My google searches indicate that this is an installed item at the pump/filter level. Is this a difficult installation? Can this be done by someone less mechanically inclined like I am? Is there a portable version that does not require an installation? Pros and cons to both?
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
    Purex-Triton nautilus NS-36 DE filter;Pentair SM-20-2 multivalve
    MagneTek Centurion Switchless motor 1.5 HP
    Polaris

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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Quote Originally Posted by rohan
    Didn't know about erosion feeders. Thanks for the tip. My google searches indicate that this is an installed item at the pump/filter level. Is this a difficult installation? Can this be done by someone less mechanically inclined like I am? Is there a portable version that does not require an installation? Pros and cons to both?

    The Pentair Rainbow 320 inline is well thought of. It requires a check valve between the filter and the chlorinator. It's a pretty simple installation if you have a straight run of pipe after the filter. Just requires a saw and PVC cement. Probably less than $75 for the chlorinator and the check valve.
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Checked out the Pentair Rainbow 320 inline. One question I have is that if these inline erosion chlorinators only use pucks, and pucks raise CYA levels, how to you manage your increased CYA levels? do you have to alternate between inline and pucks and regular bleach into the pool until CYA levels recover? Or can you simply use inline only and manage CYA levels through a different method?
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
    Purex-Triton nautilus NS-36 DE filter;Pentair SM-20-2 multivalve
    MagneTek Centurion Switchless motor 1.5 HP
    Polaris

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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Quote Originally Posted by rohan
    Checked out the Pentair Rainbow 320 inline. One question I have is that if these inline erosion chlorinators only use pucks, and pucks raise CYA levels, how to you manage your increased CYA levels? do you have to alternate between inline and pucks and regular bleach into the pool until CYA levels recover? Or can you simply use inline only and manage CYA levels through a different method?
    Well, that's the $64,000 question. The feeders are fine for use when you are gone, but the CYA can go from nothing to excessive in less than a season if they are used continuously. It can take a little planning to keep a handle on CYA, but it can work. Use bleach when you are home and pucks when you are on the road.
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Thanks. Thats what I was afraid of. I'm still looking for that "system" that you can set once and walk away and your pool will be perfectly maintained. I thought that meant hiring a pool maintenance company....boy was I wrong!!!

    If I install in inline system, can you turn it off and on as needed? Usually installed systems are on when they are on, so I thought I would ask.

    Also - what is the danger in slipping pucks into the skimmer for use only when I'm out for a week or more? This does not happen often - maybe once a month at most.
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
    Purex-Triton nautilus NS-36 DE filter;Pentair SM-20-2 multivalve
    MagneTek Centurion Switchless motor 1.5 HP
    Polaris

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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Quote Originally Posted by rohan
    If I install in inline system, can you turn it off and on as needed? Usually installed systems are on when they are on, so I thought I would ask.

    Also - what is the danger in slipping pucks into the skimmer for use only when I'm out for a week or more? This does not happen often - maybe once a month at most.
    The chlorinators have valves to adjust the rate, but usually it's best just add enough pucks to last until you'll be back.

    When you put pucks in the skimmer, they continue to dissolve when the pump is off, creating an area of high chlorine and low pH.
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Just an update - I used pucks while I was out all week. Everything seems fine. Chrorine levels are at 7-8 ppm. CYA has risen slightly to around 40 from 25-30. So I am pleased with the result. And with my CYA still low, I can probably use pucks next week while I am out as well with confidence.

    Only problem is that my kids are using the pool, and have started complaining about their eyes burning when they are finished swimming. Could be that they are not using their goggles as much as they play around. I checked the ph levels and they are safely between 7.2-7.4. Anything else I can check? Anyone else have experience with pucks and "burning eyes"? Are they related?
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
    Purex-Triton nautilus NS-36 DE filter;Pentair SM-20-2 multivalve
    MagneTek Centurion Switchless motor 1.5 HP
    Polaris

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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    The pH of eyes varies, with the average being around 7.5. It's possible the lower pH was the culprit unless there was a temporary increased concentration from the Trichlor (i.e. low pH and high chlorine) near where pucks dissolved if using a floating chlorinator. I suspect it's just overall low pH.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    Another option for chlorination might be the Liquidator. Or converting to a SWG.
    There's a whole section of the forum devoted to automation:
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/chemi...dator-f81.html
    --paulr
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  20. Back To Top    #20

    Re: Pool Perfect + PhosFREE

    I've been using Phosphate remover every other week (~1 oz) to keep it below 100. This is the first year that my pool has zero algae. I have a salt water pool.
    FC:2.5
    CC:0
    pH:8
    TA:120
    CH: 280
    CYA: 80
    Salt: 3200
    Phosphate: <100

    I don't use Phos-Free that was recommended by Leslie's because it adds CH. I bought one made by HASA, and its called Phos Out. Stuff works great. If I don't control my Phosphate level, I will get algae guaranteed.

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