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Thread: Converting from Baqua to SWG

  1. Back To Top    #1

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    Converting from Baqua to SWG

    First things first...this is a great website. I have been "researching" and reading through posts for some time now in order to familiarize myself as much as possible with everything.

    Let me give a little bit of background.

    We purchased a home 2 years ago with a 24' Round 48" deep AGP. The previous owners used Baquacil, which at first wasn't so bad....as we didn't know anything else at the time.
    It seemed fairly easy: test weekly, add whatever the pool store told us to, scrub walls and vacuum every few days, repeat. The price of the various Baqua products started to add up and it seemed we were constantly battling some sort of algae every other week or so. Which only added up to more frustration, money, and elbow-grease.

    I had come across this site 2 years ago while Googlin' "Baquacil". Then it hit me...I wasn't alone. I have to admit at first the BBB method seemed too good to be true. But a forum such as this with so many members who are willing to stay on and help others all the time proves that there is truth behind this system. And we are ready to join in on the party!

    Last July I was laid off and adding Baqua to our pool instantly became a back-burner issue. We had a pretty wet fall and winter and we didn't close the pool for the winter. Once I got back to work...it was already too cold to start swimming so we just "let-it-go". The pump and filter still run etc..I figured not adding Baqua for 10 months would help my spring-conversion cause.

    So here we are. I am starting the conversion ASAP. We drained the pool about 65% and refilled it...just to help get as much residual Baqua out. I ordered an Intex SWG (the 2009 model) and it should be here tomorrow. I couldn't get my TF Test kit fast enough so i broke down and purchased the Leslie's FAS-DPD kit because it was available immediately (ultimately it will be replaced by a TFTestkit).

    I went ahead and stocked up on 8 Bags of Morton's Pool Salt, some 1.42g jugs of Bleach, and some Borax (as I have a feeling I will need to raise my PH).

    I am going to bring a sample of my water to be tested by the store first so I have something to compare my test results with and am thinking about starting the conversion tonight.

    Wish us luck!

    I will post my initial "store-test" results here shortly.

    PS - I have looked over and familiarized myself with Pool-School numerous times...however I am certain I will still have questions.
    PPS - yes...I will try to post pictures of the conversion.
    Above Ground Pool - 13,500 Gallons - Sand Filter - 2.5 HP 2 Speed Pump
    Intex 8110 SWG - Leslie's Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit


    (Previous Owners used Baquacil...We used it for 2 summers and are TROUBLE FREE since 5/27/10!!!)

  2. Back To Top    #2

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Welcome to TFP!

    I'm guessing that you have already read over the Baquacil conversion topic in Pool School? Be sure to read it if you haven't yet.

    Yes, take pictures. We like those!
    10K gallon IG gunite with waterfall; Pentair CC320P filter; WhisperFlo 2 HP pump
    TF Test Kits - Pool Math - Pool School
    "It depends."- JohnT

  3. Back To Top    #3

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Quote Originally Posted by 257WbyMag
    Welcome to TFP!

    I'm guessing that you have already read over the Baquacil conversion topic in Pool School? Be sure to read it if you haven't yet.
    Thank you!

    Yes...I have read that topic as well as others multiple times.

    Well I just got back from the Pool Store with my initial results.

    First and foremost...they told me I had no Baquacil!
    Or at least a reading under 2...because that's the lowest their readings go.

    I am assuming I still raise my FC to 15ppm?

    I was wrong about my PH being low. We had a lot of rain the day after i tested it...so it went from really low to high.

    Here is what they tested:

    FC: 0
    pH: 8.4
    TA: 40
    CH: 250

    Just got back with some Muriatic Acid...about to bring it down some before adding bleach tonight. Gonna shoot to bring it to 7.2. Is that a good start? Also is it ok to add my salt tonight?
    Above Ground Pool - 13,500 Gallons - Sand Filter - 2.5 HP 2 Speed Pump
    Intex 8110 SWG - Leslie's Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit


    (Previous Owners used Baquacil...We used it for 2 summers and are TROUBLE FREE since 5/27/10!!!)

  4. Back To Top    #4

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Oh and the store rep was hilario. He told me that I needed to change out my sand now because adding Chlorine to it right now would be extremely dangerous and be like "napalm in the sand filter and explode causing damage to my house and melting my equipment...Corporate was sued by a lady not long ago that this happened to because they did not inform her first".
    Above Ground Pool - 13,500 Gallons - Sand Filter - 2.5 HP 2 Speed Pump
    Intex 8110 SWG - Leslie's Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit


    (Previous Owners used Baquacil...We used it for 2 summers and are TROUBLE FREE since 5/27/10!!!)

  5. Back To Top    #5
    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Napalm, huh?

    Sounds like a good plan. You may want to raise TA before starting (to about 80), but it probably isn't critical. I don't see why you couldn't add salt right now, but I don't see the point. You likely would just end up backwashing a lot of it out in the conversion process.
    11,200 gal, Pebble-Tec; Tristar 2-speed 1hp - Swimclear 325 ft2 cart - SWG - A & A in-floor cleaner - Heat pump. For the poolside cooking, a Yoder Wichita and a Big Steel Keg!
    TF Test Kits -- PoolMath -- Pool School
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    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    welcome...don't trust those test results...use you fas-dpd kit. Something doesn't add up...maybe it is the baq...but if your TA is so low I have a hard time believing your PH to be 8.4

    Test with your kit, before adding MA as that will only further decrease your TA....you want to adjust your TA up to around 70 with backing soda...but use that FAS-dpd kit...forget about the store results

    Good luck with ther conversion...you'll love BBB
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

    Pool School, TFTestKits, Pool Calculator

  7. Back To Top    #7

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    while you do have to change your sand, though it's nothing like that wack napalm story. Now that's funny!

    The reason you should change your sand is because the biguanide gums the sand. It seriously turns it to gum.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Low TA allows the PH to swing around very easily. If you are using trichlor, then low PH and low TA always go together. But with baquacil, low TA means that the PH is equally likely to be too low or too high.

    You need to raise the TA level to at least 70 and get the PH to between 7.2 and 7.4 before starting the conversion.

    "napalm"??? Pool stores never cease to amaze me with their wild stories.

    You will need to change your sand, but not until the conversion is nearly complete.
    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

  9. Back To Top    #9

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Quote Originally Posted by stephentx7
    Oh and the store rep was hilario. He told me that I needed to change out my sand now because adding Chlorine to it right now would be extremely dangerous and be like "napalm in the sand filter and explode causing damage to my house and melting my equipment...Corporate was sued by a lady not long ago that this happened to because they did not inform her first".
    In other words..."Keep buying our expensive Baq products and you'll live to tell about it."
    10K gallon IG gunite with waterfall; Pentair CC320P filter; WhisperFlo 2 HP pump
    TF Test Kits - Pool Math - Pool School
    "It depends."- JohnT

  10. Back To Top    #10

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    or just keep flames away from your pool and everything should be all right

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Well I started the conversion last night.

    Here are my numbers this morning after adding the Pool Calc's recommendation for Bleach:

    FC = 1.5
    CC = 3.5
    pH = 7.5
    TA = 80

    went ahead and backwashed (no "Baqua-goo" came out though) and added 2 more 1.24 Gallon jugs of Bleach.

    Water went from clear at start of conversion to a cloudy green 5 minutes after addition of Bleach last night. 10 minutes after I added more bleach this morning and the water was already getting clearer.

    I have a question. After I add bleach to get back to 15ppm...how long should I wait to test again to make sure I am at 15 ppm?

    Here are pics!

    Here is a picture of the pool yesterday before vacuuming and wedding cake stair removal (bunch of algae and nastiness inside it and behind it).



    Here it is after my initial addition of bleach:



    and here it is after backwashing and addition of more bleach to bring back up to 15ppm

    Above Ground Pool - 13,500 Gallons - Sand Filter - 2.5 HP 2 Speed Pump
    Intex 8110 SWG - Leslie's Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit


    (Previous Owners used Baquacil...We used it for 2 summers and are TROUBLE FREE since 5/27/10!!!)

  12. Back To Top    #12
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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    You can test the water and raise FC back up to 15 as often as once an hour and not less than twice a day. The more frequently you check and add chlorine, the sooner the conversion will be over.
    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

  13. Back To Top    #13

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    You can test the water and raise FC back up to 15 as often as once an hour and not less than twice a day. The more frequently you check and add chlorine, the sooner the conversion will be over.
    So if I check an hour after I initially add bleach it will be a good test result? I just wanted to make sure that I am really getting to 15ppm when I add the bleach. Or should I just not waste my reagents? I have the Leslie's FAS-DPD kit. I used the 10ml with each drop being 0.5ppm method. Which is a better test method?
    Above Ground Pool - 13,500 Gallons - Sand Filter - 2.5 HP 2 Speed Pump
    Intex 8110 SWG - Leslie's Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit


    (Previous Owners used Baquacil...We used it for 2 summers and are TROUBLE FREE since 5/27/10!!!)

  14. Back To Top    #14
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    For a baquacil conversion there won't be any way to know if you are reaching 15 ppm or not for the first few days. The chlorine and baquacil will react almost instantly. Later on in the conversion you will be able to get a sense of how close you are getting to your target, but not right now.

    You want to use the FAS-DPD chlorine test through out the conversion, using the 10ml/steps of 0.5 approach. If you have the Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit, it only comes with 0.75 oz on R-0871. That probably isn't enough to last through the conversion, even with care to conserve reagent.
    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

  15. Back To Top    #15

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Thank you Jason. I appreciate everyone's help.
    Above Ground Pool - 13,500 Gallons - Sand Filter - 2.5 HP 2 Speed Pump
    Intex 8110 SWG - Leslie's Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit


    (Previous Owners used Baquacil...We used it for 2 summers and are TROUBLE FREE since 5/27/10!!!)

  16. Back To Top    #16

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Came home and brushed walls...then I vacuumed to waste. I also backwashed (noticed a little sand came out...hmmm).

    Here are current test results:

    FC = 0.5 (possibly 0...it almost kept needing more powder just to turn pink)
    CC = 1.5
    pH = 7.2
    TA = 80
    CH = 120

    About to add 2.2 (182 oz.) Jugs.

    On a side note our SWG came in today. Gonna look into how to start hooking it up tomorrow (plumbing wise).

    here is most recent picture after I came home today and brushed/vacuumed.

    Above Ground Pool - 13,500 Gallons - Sand Filter - 2.5 HP 2 Speed Pump
    Intex 8110 SWG - Leslie's Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit


    (Previous Owners used Baquacil...We used it for 2 summers and are TROUBLE FREE since 5/27/10!!!)

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Getting there....

    Here are this morning's overnight FC Loss Test numbers:

    FC = 9 (hey loook it held some!)
    CC = 1.5
    pH = 7.8
    TA = 90

    I am taking a half day at work today so I'll be able to come home and shock it back to 15 every hour or so for a little bit this afternoon.

    About to go add more chlorine now....
    Above Ground Pool - 13,500 Gallons - Sand Filter - 2.5 HP 2 Speed Pump
    Intex 8110 SWG - Leslie's Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit


    (Previous Owners used Baquacil...We used it for 2 summers and are TROUBLE FREE since 5/27/10!!!)

  18. Back To Top    #18
    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    looking good
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

    Pool School, TFTestKits, Pool Calculator

  19. Back To Top    #19

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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    Here is what it looked like this morning (9.25 Gallons total at this point)



    Another quick question at this point.
    Do I still need to continue vacuuming to waste at this point? There isn't anything visible to vacuum and I am wondering if replacing the water I lose during a vacuum to waste is hampering the overall chemistry of my water. Just looking for a little clarification.

    Also, after the salt has been mixed for 24 hours...would it hurt to go ahead and turn on the SWG during the day, when I am not around, in order to produce chlorine. (just to help speed it along a little?)
    Above Ground Pool - 13,500 Gallons - Sand Filter - 2.5 HP 2 Speed Pump
    Intex 8110 SWG - Leslie's Chlorine FAS-DPD Service Test Kit


    (Previous Owners used Baquacil...We used it for 2 summers and are TROUBLE FREE since 5/27/10!!!)

  20. Back To Top    #20
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Converting from Baqua to SWG

    No, if there isn't any visible debris there isn't any point in vacuuming to waste.

    It is probably a good idea to leave the SWG off for now. You don't want any baqgoo accumulating inside the SWG.
    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

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