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Thread: maintaining bromine levels

  1. Back To Top    #1

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    maintaining bromine levels

    I've gotten used to the BBB system for the pool and it's just a habit now to test daily and pour in the bleach as needed. I'm still learning the ins and outs of using bromine for the spa.

    At first it was working fine to keep the dispenser in the spa all the time. Now my bromine levels shoot up when I leave it in. It just isn't systematic and measurable like pouring in the chlorine! Very frustrating!

    Does anyone have any helpful experience to share? The spa is kept covered when not in use. Now I am trying leaving the dispenser in overnight and taking it out in the morning. It's on the lowest setting.

    Thx,
    Jules
    ~Jules~

    My pool: INDOOR 13x27 rectangular fiberglass, built ~2001, BBB, TA-60 sand filter, Hayward two speed pump (1 hp/0.33 hp), 3/4 hp booster pump for solar heater
    Taylor K-2006 test

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Guest
    How long has the water been in your spa? Both bromide and dimethylhydantoin will build up in the water over time, which is one of the reasons that spas are supposed to be drained and refilled every 3-4 months. Dimethylhydantion does make bromeine "stay" in the water in a similar way that CYA does for chlorine. If the spa is not getting much use then the bromine levels will increase, expecially if you keep it covered. You might try uncovering it for a short time each day and see if that helps. Or you could try a two step bromine system (sodium bromide on startup, NO bromne tabs, and just add bleach to oxidize the sodium bromide and maintain your bromine level as needed (probably daily) and shock weekly. It will require more testing and maintenance than the three step and, IMHO, if you are going that route bromine offers no advatages over chlorine and you might as well just convert to a chlorine spa.

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    The water has been in the spa just under one month. It has been used almost daily during that time. I keep it covered when not in use, except for a couple of times when I uncovered it to let the sun burn off some excess bromine.

    Looks like I will have to take the duck out about every other day to keep the bromine from going too high. I left it out for 24 hours after getting a bromine reading around 9. (Didn't mean to leave it out that long, just took it out in the evening and forgot to put it back in the morning.) My next reading was about 1.5-2.0, so I added 2 t of the "brominating concentrate," the stuff that's mostly dichlor. That was last night; I put the duck in then and took it out this morning.

    Maybe on my next fill I will see how I like chlorine in the spa. . .
    ~Jules~

    My pool: INDOOR 13x27 rectangular fiberglass, built ~2001, BBB, TA-60 sand filter, Hayward two speed pump (1 hp/0.33 hp), 3/4 hp booster pump for solar heater
    Taylor K-2006 test

  4. Back To Top    #4
    Guest
    The brominating concentrate you are using sounds like it's not made for using with tablets. It's designed to add both bromide and chlorine at the same time, much like the tablets are, and the combination of both sounds like it is overdosing your spa. If you want to do a 3 step bromine system I suggest you do it correctly by draining your spa, adding plain sodim bromide, shocking with bleach, and then putting your floater in to maintain the bromine level and shock with bleach weekly.

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    I will read the label again. . . the brominating concentrate does say it can be used as a stand-alone sanitizer. I needed a start-up product and that was what the pool store had. I asked for sodium bromide; the brominating concentrate was what I ended up with.
    ~Jules~

    My pool: INDOOR 13x27 rectangular fiberglass, built ~2001, BBB, TA-60 sand filter, Hayward two speed pump (1 hp/0.33 hp), 3/4 hp booster pump for solar heater
    Taylor K-2006 test

  6. Back To Top    #6
    Guest
    If there is another store near you try it. You might also find it at a Lowes or Home Depot or you can get it online from many of the online retailers. Look for a product that is just sodium bromide and is used on filling the spa. There are several ones available from different manufacutuers such as HTH and Robarb.

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    Unfortunately there are no other pool stores nearby. Not a Lowe's or Home Despot either; only a few pool items are stocked at Ace, and none at Walmart. I order most of my supplies online, but at the time I was in a bit of a rush.

    I have only used the brominating concentrate two or three times--once for startup, and a couple of other times when I needed to raise the bromine level quickly. I use KPMS for shocking.
    ~Jules~

    My pool: INDOOR 13x27 rectangular fiberglass, built ~2001, BBB, TA-60 sand filter, Hayward two speed pump (1 hp/0.33 hp), 3/4 hp booster pump for solar heater
    Taylor K-2006 test

  8. Back To Top    #8
    Guest
    If the Ace near you carries HTH products (most of them do) you want Bromstart

  9. Back To Top    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by waterbear
    If the Ace near you carries HTH products (most of them do) you want Bromstart

    intheswim.com sells it for $10/lb if you buy a 3 lb. container. Quick question, can you use cal hypo tabs (HTH product made for placement in the skimmer) to activate and maintain your bromide in a pool?
    Mike
    20,000 gallon in-ground gunite with attached spa
    Pentair Cartridge Filter
    3/4 hp Sta-Rite Pump
    2 hp Whisperflo Spa Pump
    Ray-Vac cleaner

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Guest
    The problem would be that you cannot really regulate the amount of chlorine introduced and it would be very difficult to maintain proper bromine levels. It would be better to use bromine tabs in a floater after adding the sodium bromide and shocking. The bromine tabs contain both bromide and chlorine and will maintain the bromine levels.

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Quote Originally Posted by waterbear
    The problem would be that you cannot really regulate the amount of chlorine introduced and it would be very difficult to maintain proper bromine levels. It would be better to use bromine tabs in a floater after adding the sodium bromide and shocking. The bromine tabs contain both bromide and chlorine and will maintain the bromine levels.
    I have 12 lbs of the tabs left so I was going to try to utilize them if possible. One thing I have noticed since I converted to bromine is that bleach seems to be more effective at converting bromine ions than the oxone based shock. I am not sure why yet.
    Mike
    20,000 gallon in-ground gunite with attached spa
    Pentair Cartridge Filter
    3/4 hp Sta-Rite Pump
    2 hp Whisperflo Spa Pump
    Ray-Vac cleaner

  12. Back To Top    #12
    Guest
    Simple, it's because chlorine is a more effective oxidizer than MPS.

  13. Back To Top    #13
    Quote Originally Posted by waterbear
    Simple, it's because chlorine is a more effective oxidizer than MPS.
    Sounds logical. After my second day of using oxone, I am done with it and will only use it sporadically when I am out of bleach!
    Mike
    20,000 gallon in-ground gunite with attached spa
    Pentair Cartridge Filter
    3/4 hp Sta-Rite Pump
    2 hp Whisperflo Spa Pump
    Ray-Vac cleaner

  14. Back To Top    #14

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    I think my solution is so simple we've all missed it: fewer tablets in the dispenser.
    ~Jules~

    My pool: INDOOR 13x27 rectangular fiberglass, built ~2001, BBB, TA-60 sand filter, Hayward two speed pump (1 hp/0.33 hp), 3/4 hp booster pump for solar heater
    Taylor K-2006 test

  15. Back To Top    #15
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by giulietta1
    I think my solution is so simple we've all missed it: fewer tablets in the dispenser.
    If you have a good floater that is infinintely ajustable instead of just having a few finite postitions (closed, half, full) the number of tablets should not matter. You should be able to adjust the floater to provide the correct amount of bromine to maintaian the level in the tub. I personally have always liked the Rainbow Lifeguard (Pentair) bromine (1" tab) floaters. You can load them up with tablets and then just screw the bottom part in or out to control how fast the bromine is introduced into the water.

  16. Back To Top    #16

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    No, I don't have an infinitely adjustable dispenser. . . just a duck.
    ~Jules~

    My pool: INDOOR 13x27 rectangular fiberglass, built ~2001, BBB, TA-60 sand filter, Hayward two speed pump (1 hp/0.33 hp), 3/4 hp booster pump for solar heater
    Taylor K-2006 test

  17. Back To Top    #17
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by giulietta1
    No, I don't have an infinitely adjustable dispenser. . . just a duck.
    It should still have some sort of adjustment of how fast the tabs are eroded. If you have the kind I think you do the bottom of it twists to cover or uncover holes, correct?

  18. Back To Top    #18

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    Yes, there are about 4 settings. I've been keeping it on the lowest.
    ~Jules~

    My pool: INDOOR 13x27 rectangular fiberglass, built ~2001, BBB, TA-60 sand filter, Hayward two speed pump (1 hp/0.33 hp), 3/4 hp booster pump for solar heater
    Taylor K-2006 test

  19. Back To Top    #19
    Guest
    if it's still putting too much bromine into the water then I would suggest finding a different style of floater that is infinitely adjustable. You just have to look at them and see how they adjust.

  20. Back To Top    #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by waterbear
    if it's still putting too much bromine into the water then I would suggest finding a different style of floater that is infinitely adjustable. . .
    That's not what a certifiable cheapskate wants to hear.

    Thx,
    Jules
    ~Jules~

    My pool: INDOOR 13x27 rectangular fiberglass, built ~2001, BBB, TA-60 sand filter, Hayward two speed pump (1 hp/0.33 hp), 3/4 hp booster pump for solar heater
    Taylor K-2006 test

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