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Thread: Anyone using BBB with a saltwater above ground system?

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    Join Date
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    Anyone using BBB with a saltwater above ground system?

    Hi everyone,

    Wondering if anyone out there in the pool world is using the BBB method with their salt system and how much success you are having with it. I have seen rave reveiws with the regular chlorination process, but haven't came across anything with a salt system. I will be using an Aquatrol in line saltsystem.

    Any opinions?

    P.S. TGIF
    18x33 Delair Sunsation GS AGP Oval 4 shallow-6 deep mostly buried

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone using BBB with a saltwater above ground system?

    There are tons of folks here that use an SWG. In fact, in Pool School there's a section devoted strictly to Salt Water Generators. Salt water generators lend themselves perfectly to the BBB concept.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    No P in my ool's Avatar
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    Logan IA
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    Re: Anyone using BBB with a saltwater above ground system?

    I use it!
    21' Leslies Beachland Ag Pool, 10,000 gallons, professionally installed (best money I ever spent) Hayward 16" sand filter w/Pentair two speed pump Fafco 4x20 solar heater,Aqua Trol RJ. Borates added. Hard plumbed.

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    pool4me's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone using BBB with a saltwater above ground system?

    I can't give you any "long term" results but after 20 years without a pool, I now have another that I've just installed.

    Since June, I've been using (specs in sig) the Intex SWG and I guess you could say the BBB method. I LOVE IT. I started off with a fresh fill and BBB for appx 2 weeks until I got my chemicals right and then I started the SWG.

    I know each pool's chemical requirements differ but right now, I can tell you that my pool has been crystal clear, no chlorine smell (just a nice clean smell to the water) and as of about a month ago I've noticed that the water looks very "polished" like others on the forum have described. I really could not understand the description of polished as I read it on the forum until I noticed one day my pool really looked "ultra-clear" and almost a "shine" on the surface. AMAZING.

    Right now, I'm still in the "experimenting stage" and I've been charting my numbers and will be posting for suggestions but currently:

    I run my SWG for 6 hours at night within a 8 hour pump/filter run time. (11pm - 7am run time)

    During the day, my pump comes on for another 4 hours between 12noon and 4pm

    I'm not "ultra-rural" out here, but I do have the occasional power outage which is annoying with the Intex SWG so to play it safe (I really don't even know why I do this to be honest) I leave (1) 3" Triclor puck in a floating feeder set on the 2nd lowest setting and it lasts almost 2 weeks before it's fully disolved / gone. (So I'm sure I'm not really getting much of a benifit at all (other than most likely a teeeeeeny bit of CYA I guess) but in my bizzare mind if figure if my Intex SWG stops working and I don't see it immediately, I at least have a very minmal amount of chemical in the water. - I know, I'm warped...

    The TF 100 Kit is 100% AMAZING. Hands down I'm very amazed how far it's come since I've last had a pool and used the simple 3 way test kit.

    Between the TF-100, the pool calculator, the GREAT PEOPLE on this forum and BBB It's really all you need.

    Maybe too much info but I just wanted to post that I think BBB and SWG is a great combo.

    To be 100% honest, I by no means have had a home run right off the bat....,

    I had a slight occurence (which I thought was sand at first) of "fine stuff" in the pool which I then began to believe was Algae due to a slight slimy feeling. After researching on the site I didn't even have to post a question about it.

    Waterbear, Frustrated Pool Mom and many others have posted such great info regarding Mustard Algae, Matt's Mud etc, I almost instantly saw than my CYA was low, my chlorine was being consumed, I needed to check my numbers etc.

    After many tests, getting used to my TF-100, researching on the site, (Great Chart by the way regarding shock level based on your CYA), I did an overnight test, shocked the pool, vac'd some of the "gunk" to waste, installed a skimmer sock and some other stuff, I really saw my water go from what was always crystal clear to 10 x's better and very polished.

    The Intex SWG is (In many people's opinion) a very basic, entry level SWG which I 100% agree with. Since I was planning to go BBB anyway, I figured that I'd get my feet wet with SWG with an inexpensive unit like the Intex and then supplement it with BBB. I could always upgrade in the future and since my pool isn't really "super large" I think the Intex is a nice fit. Not big on features but hey for $164.99 I'm happy with it.

    I think SWG and BBB is a very cost effective way to maintain a pool.

    I'm still not there yet. I do see every few days a few spots of that gunk and I do see that my CYA is a bit under where it should be. I have work to do but I've recorded my current levels because with the help of this board, I'm THRILLED at where my water is after being away from pool care for over 20 years.

    BBB, SWG , TF-100 and the board members are (no question) why a "born again pool newbie" has avoided many of the common problems that others face with green pools, algae and a host of other problems. Just wanted to pass along my success story to you.
    33'x15' x 52" Aqualeader
    Gallons ? - (I use appx 13,500 to calculate "stuff")
    33 x 15 x 4.3 x 5.9 = 12,558. or . . The Pool Calculator = 14,400
    Hayward S-166T 100Lb Sand Filter - Hayward Power-Flo LX 1HP Pump
    Intex S.W.G.

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
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    Waaay NW MN
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    Re: Anyone using BBB with a saltwater above ground system?

    I have been using BBB with a SWG as well. I always open my pool in the spring with just BBB to get the levels correct before firing up the SWG as it does not operate well/correctly on cold water - the salt does not dissolve well until the water gets in the mid/upper 70s.

    I also use bleach as my backup for power outages - I keep jugs nearby all the time to adjust if we have a storm that dumps tree debris or high bug loads or really heavy swimmer loads (family reunion, etc) -

    The SWG is the best thing since sliced bread in my opinion, makes maintaining the pool a breeze - BBB is the foundation of pool maintenance and not really a choice, it's the only smart way to operate. The other "options" are more expensive and more work, why would anyone go there?
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Re: Anyone using BBB with a saltwater above ground system?

    Hi Momov2,
    We're in Mobile, AL. I am fairly new to TFP. We are using the BBB on a new above ground pool with Borates and an Aquatrol SWCG. Since getting everything balanced...it is almost maintenance free (by most folks standards..non BBB people). In addition...we are delighted with all the help we have received from everyone on this forum.

    Kathy
    Travis & Kathy
    16x32 AGP (extra return outlet installed), Pentair Dynamo Pump (1.5HP, 60+ GPM), Sta-Rite Crystal Flow Sand Filter (300 lb), Clear Diamond Solar Blanket & Reel, Pool-Skim
    Aqua Trol SWG (also controlling the pump), TF Test Kit. (Everything self installed, up and running on 08/02/09)
    Enjoying the TFP site and appreciating the infinite knowledge of it's members... and I'm slowly learning how to maintain our new pool the BBB way!
    Four Winds Spa (love the tub...hate the filtration system). Best water quality in four years using the BBB method

  7. Back To Top    #7

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    Paradise (Hampstead, NC)
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    Re: Anyone using BBB with a saltwater above ground system?

    We started fresh with a new liner just before closing last fall. Made a slight ph adjustment upon opening then started the bbb. Made the borates conversion early, then installed an Intex 8110 in June. For 165 bucks it could pay for itself before the warranty ran out. Now we have SPARKLING clear water, I vacuum once a week, add a quart of ma every other week. And that's the extent of maintenance. Well, I do have to scoop out the occasional leaf, lizard or frog...but that's a bit beyond chemistry adjustments.

    YEAH TFP!!!

    the Snark
    16X32 AB, Jacuzzi Laser 190 19" sand filter, 3/4hp Pentair Optiflo, CircuPool RJ30+ swg, TF 100

  8. Back To Top    #8

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    Jul 2008
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    Solon, Iowa
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    Re: Anyone using BBB with a saltwater above ground system?

    I'll second the comments here supporting the convenience of SWCG + BBB.

    Three important things I've learned since installing my system last year:

    1. In addition to vacuuming I would add that brushing the sides/bottom/steps weekly is important to prevent algae biofilms from getting a foothold (really important if you ignore #2).
    2. Know your CYA level so you keep your free chlorine at effective levels.
    3. Borates (along with good TA levels) are very effective in preventing upward pH drift in SWCG systems. I bought 3 gallons of muriatic acid this spring and still have 2 1/2 left.

    Kelly
    15X30 AGP, Lomart beaded liner;
    1.5 HP Sta-Rite pump with 21 inch sand filter (Zeobrite media)
    Mineral Springs (Aquatrol) SWCG, Rigid PVC plumbing, 2 inch
    Four 4X12 Techno-Solis solar panels, rack mounted, Goldline Solar Controller

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