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Thread: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

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    question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    I'm brand new here. I began looking to the simpler solutions to pool care, ie not through the pool store, and picked up what sounded like a good idea. I think I'd best check here and see if it is first.

    I have (and it should be in the signature) a 24000 gal IG pool and use a cartridge filter. The water's clear and chemicals arent too bad. I'm still researching the site before bringing many questions. But I have one I want to bring quickly. Mainly because if I'm all wrong, I can still return the product. If this is the wrong forum for this, my apologies.

    It was suggested that adding some salt to a pool would help prevent eye irritation and make the water "feel better." So I had picked up some water softener salt.
    I just got a Taylor 2005K test kit but haven't finished reading the instructions yet.
    My last (2 days ago) pool store water test gave numbers as follows:
    Free chlor-4.0ppm (high & know. I just got off test strips and my last didn't read chlorine worth a darn I find out)
    Total chlor 4.0ppm
    combined chlor 0/0
    ph 7.7
    hardness 120ppm
    alkalinity (w/stabilizer correction) 204ppm
    CYA 20ppm This was much higher but I did water replacement to bring it down. I was still guaging by test strips until a couple days ago. It's a little low I know. Will some hocky pucks bring it back up? Btw, according to my new oto test kit shows the chlor still a bit high. It hasn't been dropping much. For the past couple weeks I have been using plain ole bleach.

    One question specifically about the salt, assuming I want to go ahead with it, since the water 'hardness' is low, will 'softening' the water hurt anything?

    I hope this is OK here and I haven't just stepped off the deep end?
    Thanks all.
    ETexas 24,000 Vinyl lined IG cartridge filter:(

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Casey's Avatar
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    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Hi JayGee! Welcome to TFP!

    Um... hockey pucks don't add chlorine or CYA!
    I know what you meant... the pucks will add CYA, just be careful so you don't over use them once the CYA starts to rise but they will also lower pH because they're acidic. So just be careful like I said.

    I have salt in my pool and it feels sooooo goood! I wish I'd of found it sooner!
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

    24' Sharkline Venture De Filter

  3. Back To Top    #3
    Guest

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by JayGee
    I'm brand new here. I began looking to the simpler solutions to pool care, ie not through the pool store, and picked up what sounded like a good idea. I think I'd best check here and see if it is first.



    It was suggested that adding some salt to a pool would help prevent eye irritation and make the water "feel better." So I had picked up some water softener salt.
    I just got a Taylor 2005K test kit but haven't finished reading the instructions yet.
    Not the kit you want. You want the K-2006 which has a different chlorine test that can test up to 50 ppm FC with a precision as low as .2 ppm. If you can return the kit do so and get the K-2006! You may have to order it online. You can also get a TF100 from TF Test Kits. That is the kit tha most of us on here use. It uses Taylor reagents but it's a better 'bang for your buck"! See the Pool School article on test kits and the link to TF Test Kits in my signature.

    My last (2 days ago) pool store water test gave numbers as follows:
    Free chlor-4.0ppm (high & know. I just got off test strips and my last didn't read chlorine worth a darn I find out)
    Total chlor 4.0ppm
    combined chlor 0/0
    ph 7.7
    The above numbers are fine for now.

    hardness 120ppm
    Too low....see the recommended levels section of Pool School! What is the surface of your pool? If it is plaster this is WAY too low. Ditto if fiberglass. For vinyl you are just a bit low.

    alkalinity (w/stabilizer correction) 204ppm
    Way too how. See the lowering TA section of Pool School.

    CYA 20ppm This was much higher but I did water replacement to bring it down. I was still guaging by test strips until a couple days ago. It's a little low I know. Will some hocky pucks bring it back up? Btw, according to my new oto test kit shows the chlor still a bit high. It hasn't been dropping much. For the past couple weeks I have been using plain ole bleach.

    One question specifically about the salt, assuming I want to go ahead with it, since the water 'hardness' is low, will 'softening' the water hurt anything?
    Salt will not soften the water. A water softner uses salt and an ion exchange resin to soften the water. Adding salt to a pool will make the isoelectric point of the water closer to that of the human body and increase bather comfort but it has nothing to do with softening the water. You still need to add calcium to raise your calcium hardness. Salt will have no effect on this whatsoever.


    I hope this is OK here and I haven't just stepped off the deep end?
    Thanks all.
    Hope this helps. Read Pool School. The link is in my signature.

  4. Back To Top    #4
    AnnaK's Avatar
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    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    We add salt to our above-ground pool to improve the water feel. The concentration is probably 1600 ppm, calculated. I've not tested for it. The salt we use is Morton's Solar Salt, 99.9% pure, no metals. I don't know if that's the same as water softener salt.
    — AnnaK —

    12,000 gal AGP, Hayward sand filter, Pentair 2-speed pump, timer.
    Please visit our Pool Issues pages for information about step weights, managing the solar cover, and PoolSkim.

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    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by AnnaK
    The salt we use is Morton's Solar Salt, 99.9% pure, no metals. I don't know if that's the same as water softener salt.
    yep, it is

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    revstriker's Avatar
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    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    What is the procedure for adding salt to a pool? How do you calculate how much to add? This sounds interesting, and something I might like to try.
    10K White Plaster Pool Built in 2007. Hayward Pump and DE Filter, Hayward Navigator, Liquidator (Removed due to issues), Solar Blanket, BBB user.

  7. Back To Top    #7
    Guest

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by revstriker
    What is the procedure for adding salt to a pool?
    dump it in and let is dissolve.
    How do you calculate how much to add?
    Use the pool calculator...see link in my signature.
    This sounds interesting, and something I might like to try.
    Start with about 1200-2000 ppm

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Yeah, i'd like too try that too if there's no negative impact. Would like to improve the feel, where did you get the solar salt? and I second the "how to" add it.
    13500 Gallon / BBB Method / TF100
    Pentair SD40 sand filter / 1.5hp Dynamo
    AG / Full Sun / Small Fountain
    Eastern NC, Moderate Rain

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    Guest

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by Etek14
    where did you get the solar salt?
    Home Depot, Lowes, Grocery Store, Ace, etc. It's for water softeners. You can use the pellets also but they take a lot longer to dissolve. You want the salt that is at least 99.5% pure with no additives for rust removal or cleaning the water softener.

  10. Back To Top    #10
    AnnaK's Avatar
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    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Go to the Pool Calculator.

    In the upper left input the volume of your pool. Scroll down until you come to SALT in the left-most column. Put 0 in the first box (you're starting with 0 ppm salt) and put 1200 in the adjacent box. Most of us who've added salt run a concentration of between 1600 and 2200 ppm. In our pool 1200 was enough. Hit the TAB key. The result will tell you how many pounds for the desired concentration.

    We started with two 40# bags, then swam for a few days but didn't notice any difference. We added another 40# bag which gave us the desired effect: smoother feeling water, less skin drying, and it's easier on the eyes.

    As to the method of adding the salt, there are many. Dump it in, swish it around with a brush, leave it to dissolve. Slit a bag open and drop the entire bag in, then stomp on the salt like you were stomping in a vat of grapes. That one is fun - dissolving salt is an endothermic reaction. The water around your feet will be colder.
    If you scatter it across the pool on a sunny day, have your camera ready. The salt crystals will look like a horde of diamonds for a while, very pretty.

    Once you have salt in your pool, it's in there. We make adjustments each season, based strictly on water feel. I have never tested for salt and couldn't tell you right now what our actual concentration is.
    — AnnaK —

    12,000 gal AGP, Hayward sand filter, Pentair 2-speed pump, timer.
    Please visit our Pool Issues pages for information about step weights, managing the solar cover, and PoolSkim.

  11. Back To Top    #11
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    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by Etek14
    and I second the "how to" add it.
    Here it is again:
    Quote Originally Posted by revstriker
    What is the procedure for adding salt to a pool?
    dump it in and let is dissolve.
    How do you calculate how much to add?
    Use the pool calculator...see link in my signature.
    This sounds interesting, and something I might like to try.
    Start with about 1200-2000 ppm

  12. Back To Top    #12

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Thanks for the welcome. I think I'll go ahead with the salt.

    Calcium hardness. Is that the stuff the heats up in the bucket when you mix it with water? the pool store really reamed us on that stuff. Sold my wife a 25# bucket for $31 and told her to try it though we were probably going to need more. We did. When we went back they sold us another bucket. For $31. That's 50# for $62. Right? I look on the back wall and see 50# bags of the stuff for $32.
    They don't get any more of our money!

    But about this test kit. I'm in a bind now. I'm on a fixed income and literally can't afford the shipping return and new purchase. If I return this, I don't get another, not for some long while anyway. Maintaining the pool is a burden, but the wife & kids get so much pleasure from it and it is supposed to be 'good therapy' for me so we keep it going.

    Can it (K-2005) be made to work or suffice in the absence of the newest and best?
    ETexas 24,000 Vinyl lined IG cartridge filter:(

  13. Back To Top    #13
    Casey's Avatar
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    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Take the buckets back and that should pay for a TF-100 if you kick in a few bucks.
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

    24' Sharkline Venture De Filter

  14. Back To Top    #14
    Guest

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by JayGee
    Thanks for the welcome. I think I'll go ahead with the salt.

    Calcium hardness. Is that the stuff the heats up in the bucket when you mix it with water? the pool store really reamed us on that stuff. Sold my wife a 25# bucket for $31 and told her to try it though we were probably going to need more. We did. When we went back they sold us another bucket. For $31. That's 50# for $62. Right? I look on the back wall and see 50# bags of the stuff for $32.
    They don't get any more of our money!

    But about this test kit. I'm in a bind now. I'm on a fixed income and literally can't afford the shipping return and new purchase. If I return this, I don't get another, not for some long while anyway. Maintaining the pool is a burden, but the wife & kids get so much pleasure from it and it is supposed to be 'good therapy' for me so we keep it going.

    Can it (K-2005) be made to work or suffice in the absence of the newest and best?
    The DPD test is just not going to cut it in the long run. One solution is to add the FAS-DPD test to the kit. You can buy the FAS-DPD test from TF Test Kits, it's not that expensive.

    Realize that a good test kit is NOT a luxury item but an essential piece of pool maintenance equipment. It will pay for itself in no time in money saved on unnecessary chemicals.

  15. Back To Top    #15
    revstriker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Texas
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    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by AnnaK
    Go to the Pool Calculator.

    In the upper left input the volume of your pool. Scroll down until you come to SALT in the left-most column. Put 0 in the first box (you're starting with 0 ppm salt) and put 1200 in the adjacent box. Most of us who've added salt run a concentration of between 1600 and 2200 ppm. In our pool 1200 was enough. Hit the TAB key. The result will tell you how many pounds for the desired concentration.

    We started with two 40# bags, then swam for a few days but didn't notice any difference. We added another 40# bag which gave us the desired effect: smoother feeling water, less skin drying, and it's easier on the eyes.

    As to the method of adding the salt, there are many. Dump it in, swish it around with a brush, leave it to dissolve. Slit a bag open and drop the entire bag in, then stomp on the salt like you were stomping in a vat of grapes. That one is fun - dissolving salt is an endothermic reaction. The water around your feet will be colder.
    If you scatter it across the pool on a sunny day, have your camera ready. The salt crystals will look like a horde of diamonds for a while, very pretty.

    Once you have salt in your pool, it's in there. We make adjustments each season, based strictly on water feel. I have never tested for salt and couldn't tell you right now what our actual concentration is.
    Thanks! I'm going to go ahead and give this a try!
    10K White Plaster Pool Built in 2007. Hayward Pump and DE Filter, Hayward Navigator, Liquidator (Removed due to issues), Solar Blanket, BBB user.

  16. Back To Top    #16

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by waterbear
    Quote Originally Posted by JayGee
    But about this test kit. I'm in a bind now. I'm on a fixed income and literally can't afford the shipping return and new purchase. If I return this, I don't get another, not for some long while anyway. Maintaining the pool is a burden, but the wife & kids get so much pleasure from it and it is supposed to be 'good therapy' for me so we keep it going.

    Can it (K-2005) be made to work or suffice in the absence of the newest and best?
    The DPD test is just not going to cut it in the long run. One solution is to add the FAS-DPD test to the kit. You can buy the FAS-DPD test from TF Test Kits, it's not that expensive.

    Realize that a good test kit is NOT a luxury item but an essential piece of pool maintenance equipment. It will pay for itself in no time in money saved on unnecessary chemicals.
    I follow you. I'll look up this FAS-DPD thing. I'm not your usual pool owner. We bought this place when I was a machinist making good money. That's past history. today I'm disabled. We gave up some things to get this kit. I did research just did it badly apparently. But now it's a case of a pool test kit or my wife's 6 years overdue eyeglasses. So now it's just muddle through with what we have just as we do in so many things. One has to wonder, what did they use before the K-2006???

    More questions...
    I have read elsewhere that calcium hardness is not that essential to a vinyl lined pool. Your opinion? I ask because you note that I need to bring mine up.

    I also read that bring the PH below 7.2 in a vinyl lined pool is not a good idea yet you suggest I bring it to 7.0.

    I am not trying to be adversarial here though I realize it must look that way. Rather, I have an inquiring mind and am trying to understand conflicting views.
    ETexas 24,000 Vinyl lined IG cartridge filter:(

  17. Back To Top    #17
    Guest

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by JayGee
    I follow you. I'll look up this FAS-DPD thing. I'm not your usual pool owner. We bought this place when I was a machinist making good money. That's past history. today I'm disabled. We gave up some things to get this kit. I did research just did it badly apparently. But now it's a case of a pool test kit or my wife's 6 years overdue eyeglasses. So now it's just muddle through with what we have just as we do in so many things. One has to wonder, what did they use before the K-2006???
    They did dilutions to test high chlorine levels and wasted a lot of chemicals when it was not necessary. I would suggest keeping the K-2005 but adding the FAS-DPD only test from TF testkits.
    More questions...
    I have read elsewhere that calcium hardness is not that essential to a vinyl lined pool. Your opinion? I ask because you note that I need to bring mine up.
    If you are already above about 130 to 150 ppm you are fine! You can probably ride it out at 120 ppm but 150 would be better. Believe it or not the cheapest way to buy calcium is usually the 50 lb bag. It often will actually cost less than a smaller size.
    I also read that bring the PH below 7.2 in a vinyl lined pool is not a good idea yet you suggest I bring it to 7.0.
    For extended periods of time this is true. If you are dropping the pH to lower TA then the pH iwll start rising once you start aerating so it's pretty much a moot point. You DO need to get your TA down!
    I am not trying to be adversarial here though I realize it must look that way. Rather, I have an inquiring mind and am trying to understand conflicting views.
    Asking questions is how one learns. Your questions are good ones!

    BTW, as far as eyeglasses go I buy mine on the internet and save a LOT of money. Zenni Optical and LBW Eyewear are both sites I have had good luck with (and I wear progressive lenses and have a strong prescription). I can buy 5 pair of glasses for the same price as I can get one from the local optician. There is an interesting forum about buying eyeglasses online you might want to check out. http://www.glassyeyes.com
    There are review of the major online retailers and I highly recommend it!

  18. Back To Top    #18

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Thanks much Waterbear. I learned the lesson about calcium stuff when the pool place sold us one 25# bucket for $31 noting we might need another, then sold us another when we did for a total of $64. It was then I noticed the 50# was only $32. I'm still royally POed about that!
    I'll let the hardness ride untill next month.

    I take your point on lowering the ph only briefly. I just checked today and the PH is down to 7.0-.2 and TA is 150 so we aren't doing too bad.

    Thanks for the tip on the eye glasses. But my wife's eyes are really bad and a bad pair could literally blind her. We simply cannot trust an internet provider.
    ETexas 24,000 Vinyl lined IG cartridge filter:(

  19. Back To Top    #19
    Guest

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Quote Originally Posted by JayGee
    Thanks for the tip on the eye glasses. But my wife's eyes are really bad and a bad pair could literally blind her. We simply cannot trust an internet provider.
    have a cateract in one eye, very strongt minus prescription in both eyes and quite a bit of astigmatisim. I wear either trifocals or progressive lenses and cannot see at all without glasses. I refuse the pay the $500 or more that it costs for one pair of glasses at the optician anymore when I can have my prescription made in photochromatic progressive lenses for less than $80 and find out that they are actually closer in spec to my prescription than the ones from the optician. I think your fears are misfounded.

    At least research it ia bit, You will find out that the eyeglass industry is more corrupt than the pool and spa industry and that much of it is owned by Luxotiica (from eyeglass frames to lenses and labs to insurance!) I have been wearing glasses for almost 50 years now and can remember when they were not expensive items. The price skyrocketed about the same time Luxoxottica started biuying up everyting from frame manufacturers to LensCrafters and Pearle Vision!

  20. Back To Top    #20

    Re: question about salt in a non salt system pool?

    Thanks for all the god advice. Thanks for everything. Great bunch of guys here.
    ETexas 24,000 Vinyl lined IG cartridge filter:(

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