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Thread: White flakes and foam

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    White flakes and foam

    Hi Folks: I could really use some help. I installed a Hayward Aqua Rite SWG this spring. I have noticed that whenever the SWG is on and generating, the jets discharge water that is very cloudy (White stuff but NOT bubbles). Then the the pool becomes cloudy and the surface becomes topped with a white substance. I dont want to call it foam because it just lies on the surface.

    I have been battling algae but I backwash at least once per day. All chemical levels seem in line with Hayward reccommendations.

    You help is appreciated.
    BBB works for me!

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    I'd recommend you go ahead and post your test numbers, particularly calcium.
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    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

  3. Back To Top    #3

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    Jeff,

    It's bubbles. Do you find it coming out all the pool return lines or just the closest jet to your equipment?
    In some cases, it's so small that it is not usually perceptible to the eye during the day. More visible at night with the pool light on.
    You may want to post your water chemistry levels here so we can assist more. May be a slight adjustment in flow, or chemistry to resolve it.

    Can you increase flow to the turbocell? Lower pH to 7.2?

    Are you finding white flakes blowing back into the pool? or just the bubbles...
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

  4. Back To Top    #4

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    Flakes

    I will post chemical numbers later today. In the meantime, I am sure that I am seeing white flakes coming out of the jets. NOT bubbles. This issue only occurs when the SWG is on. Bubbles, I would think would occur whenever the pump is on.

    The SWG is piped immediately downstream of the filter. So, all water passes through the SWG.

    Thanks for the quick response guys. I really appreciate your replys.
    BBB works for me!

  5. Back To Top    #5
    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Flakes

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffPenn
    I will post chemical numbers later today. In the meantime, I am sure that I am seeing white flakes coming out of the jets. NOT bubbles. This issue only occurs when the SWG is on. Bubbles, I would think would occur whenever the pump is on.
    SWGs generate very small bubbles while in operation. I'd guess that if you've used a cheap algaecide recently that this could be the source of your foaming too.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

  6. Back To Top    #6

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    White flakes would be calcium from the cell blades. Although this should not happen only when the cell is energized. Easy enough solution though. Posting your test result should support my assumption of water chemistry imbalance.
    Lowering the pH and/or Alkalininty should take care of this.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

  7. Back To Top    #7

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    Flakes

    I did look at the cell and there are no deposits on it. I will test & post numbers later. Im pretty sure Alkalinity is about 120 and PH = 7.4. It was yesterday. I do not know about calcium level.
    BBB works for me!

  8. Back To Top    #8

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    It's possible that over time, calcium may have formed along the walls of your pipes (yes, this actually does happen) and are now starting to flake off. But again, this shouldn't occur as a result of the cell being energized.
    Was your alkalinity and pH always maintained around these levels? Or might they have been higher, historically?
    How were you sanitizing your pool before the salt system?

    Do you, or have you recently treated your pool with calcium hypochlorite?

    Where in the country are you? Typically high calcium hardness levels?

    I know... you're probably saying
    "What is this? A million questions? "
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

  9. Back To Top    #9

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    flakes

    Alk & PH have usually been around these levels. I usually use bag shock But have not shocked much this year.


    I dont have a hardness test kit. I will get one today hopefully.

    Im in Illinois.

    I appreciate your questions. They help alot
    BBB works for me!

  10. Back To Top    #10
    sean, remember i had some problems some like at the start of season and questioned you on it..at first, i thought it had to do with the temperature of pool (still possible) but since it cleared up, i've had pretty cold water at times (60 versus 55 and no problem) so, my theory is it could have something to do with interaction of regular bleach and swg generated chlorine? since my pool "unshocked" from the jugs and jugs of bleach and the chlorine level dropped from 15 on test kit to 3, i've had zero foaming/bubbles issue..just a thought.
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  11. Back To Top    #11

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    Maybe, but Jeff is saying that it's flakes. I'm assuming these are physical calcium flakes that can be scooped up by hand so it's probably not bubbles.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

  12. Back To Top    #12

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    Flakes and chem levels

    I just returned from Pool store. Here are my chemical levels.
    FC = 3.08
    TC = 3.56
    PH = 7.4
    Alk = 110
    Hardness = 110
    CYA = 20- I find this hard to believe. I have a 25000 gallon pool. I have lost some water due to BW and what not. I already added 8 lbs of CYA this season

    The pool store sold me a 25lb bag of 100% calcium chloride and told me to put all of it in pool to increase hardness to 200 PPM. I am leary of doing so. What now are your guys thoughts? Thank you for the help
    BBB works for me!

  13. Back To Top    #13

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    Well there's the wrench I wasn't looking for. Your water chemistry isn't too bad, at leat not bad enough to generate the calcium flakes.
    I would add the calcium. It won't hurt and will bring your SI into better balance.

    Back to the old drawing board...
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

  14. Back To Top    #14
    I moved this post to this thread for continuity... 6/11/07 TMQ

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffPenn
    BTW The water = 78f So when I do the numbers, the SI is .35 or so. Think all I need is calcium chloride? I am skeptical of adding any more chemicals?

    8000 gallon 20' x 48" round vinyl frame pool, 12" sand filter (don't have the specs on the pump), TF100 test kit
    Handy Links: PoolMath, TF-100 Test Kit, Pool School, CYA-Chlorine Chart
    "Shock" is a process, not a product!

  15. Back To Top    #15

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    Solved

    So, I think I have fixed thie issue. It seems a couple weeks back that my wife added algacide trying to kill what the pool store thought was black algae. I looked at the bottle and noticed it was 60% copper something or other. I had the water tested last Thursday (4 days ago) for metals and sure enough, the copper level was .3. I added a metal sequiester the same day, vacuumed friday & saturday and I have not seen the flakes coming out the jets since. I just wanted to follow up, let you guys know what I found and say thank you to all that helped. BTW, IMHO, Goldline is really providing poor tecnical support. When I spoke to them, all they would say is that a water problem existed. They would never give any guesses or direction for me to look. Just my two cents.
    BBB works for me!

  16. Back To Top    #16

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    Thanks for the update Jeff. That's one more thing I learned. Now, to think of this analytically as to how algaecide would affect scaling conditions. hmmmmm......
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Sorry I missed out on the fun while this thread was HOT - I've seen the same sort of stuff when we used the regular amonia (?) based foamy algicide to salt pools. We add the cl and algicide before adjusting the salt and once 100+ lbs of salt is added, a white 'crust' forms on the surface ( which is why I talked the boss into letting us use a pint of poly60 on the salt pools) - I've told all my co-workers about it, but sometimes they will add the 'Algem' instead of the poly. I've been meaning to ask the chem knowledgable folks, but want to have the exact name of the algicidal ingredient (from memory, it's ~dimethal, diethal, amonium...) It seems that using this stuff in the fall, even though there is algae in the pool come spring, is persistant and will cause some 'minor' 'foaming' when fresh salt is added.
    As I thought I was the only one to have experienced this problem, I put it on 'the back shelf' - but with forum members experiencing the same thing, I'll make it a point to get the compound's full chem name and ask the chemists here what's going on. So sorry for not mentioning it before, but the use of poly 60 doesn't do this. I'll reasearch and post as the answer becomes available.
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

  18. Back To Top    #18
    I also have flakes that accumulate at the shallow end of my pool near the return jets. I have never added any algecide to my pool. The only thing that seems to get rid of them for a while is a product called Scale-Tek. And I always have bubbles coming out of my return jets when my SWG is operating.

    The flake situation really bothers me. I realize that they probably aren't harming anything and nobody seems to notice them except me and my wife (unless it's at night and the light is on!). I just get very frustrated at having them in there when I know other people can run their SWG's and not have any. Having to buy the Scale-Tek gets expensive too (around $34.00 for 64 oz.).

    My last water tests were as follows:

    FC - 3.0
    TC - 3.0
    CC - 0
    Alk - 120
    Cal - 380
    CYA - 50
    Temp - 84

    My SWG is an Aque-Rite and the salt reading says 3100. I run my equipment from 7:00 AM to 4:00 PM, SWG set to about 75%. The pool is in full sun for about 8-9 hours a day.

    Can Anyone give some advise on how to get these things under control?!?!?

  19. Back To Top    #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by oasisdave
    I also have flakes that accumulate at the shallow end of my pool near the return jets. I have never added any algecide to my pool. The only thing that seems to get rid of them for a while is a product called Scale-Tek. And I always have bubbles coming out of my return jets when my SWG is operating.

    The flake situation really bothers me. I realize that they probably aren't harming anything and nobody seems to notice them except me and my wife (unless it's at night and the light is on!). I just get very frustrated at having them in there when I know other people can run their SWG's and not have any. Having to buy the Scale-Tek gets expensive too (around $34.00 for 64 oz.).

    My last water tests were as follows:

    FC - 3.0
    TC - 3.0
    CC - 0
    Alk - 120
    Cal - 380
    CYA - 50
    Temp - 84

    My SWG is an Aque-Rite and the salt reading says 3100. I run my equipment from 7:00 AM to 4:00 PM, SWG set to about 75%. The pool is in full sun for about 8-9 hours a day.

    Can Anyone give some advise on how to get these things under control?!?!?

    Hi Mate,

    99% of the time the flakes are coming from your SWG. They
    are getting knocked off your cell from the water flow. So,
    take a look and see if there is any build-up on the cell itself.

    You left out your pH reading...

    Another Tip: Dont rely on your salt reading on
    the SWG. They are notorious for being completely
    wrong. Get your salt level tested by your pool guy.

    In Australia, we run our salt at between 5000 - 6000...

    So if your cell reading is right...I think you need to
    run higher salt and turn your down to 50%

    Take Care,

    Michael Silvester

  20. Back To Top    #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Silvester
    In Australia, we run our salt at between 5000 - 6000...

    So if your cell reading is right...I think you need to
    run higher salt and turn your down to 50%

    Take Care,

    Michael Silvester
    Michael,
    Here in the states most of the SWGs run at about a 3000-3500 ppm salt level with the exception of a few (Zodiac, WaterMaid, and Pool Ex come to mind), that run at the higher levels you are used to in Australia. This is the way the units are designed to run and many of them will even cut off and stop generating when the salt levels get above about 4500 ppm. The Goldline units in question in these posts run at 3200 ppm and WILL cut off at salt levels above 4500 ppm and generate a high salt error.

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