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Thread: Hi AK and low PH and Borax

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    Hi AK and low PH and Borax

    Hello everyone,

    need some help. I live in Baltimore, MD and its about that time to close my pool. I started to try borax last Sunday. Added about 50 pounds but the AK is at 210 and PH is stillbeloe 6.8. I had used bleach before, clorox. Any ideas, should I return to soda ash.

    If I ad muratice acid the PH will drop further, no?

    BTW the pool is crystal clear.

    Thanks

    Peter
    40 X 26 Free Form Pool with attached 9 X 7 Spa raised 18" with 8 Jets and Spillover, and an Art Rock Waterfall/Grotto with accent rocks, 26,000 gallons
    Intelliflo VF-3050 for Pool, VS-3050 for Spa Jets, VS-3050 for Waterfall/Grotto, Quad DE 80, 400K BTU Mastertemp, Intellitouch i7+3 w/ iS10 10 Function Spa-Side Remote, Intellichlor IC40 Salt Chlorinator, Telephone Remote, 2 Intellibrites for Pool/ 1 for Spa, Solar Panels on 2 story Roof w/ 75% coverage
    Pebble Tec Tropical Breeze
    Tsunami's Pool Build

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    In the Industry

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    Re: Hi AK and low PH and Borax

    What are you using to test your water? If you're using test strips, be aware that they're not very reliable. Test kits recommended by this forum are the TF-100 or the Taylor K-2006.

    Borax shouldn't have much effect on alkalinity, but it should raise the pH. Your alk is very high (if your readings are correct), so don't add any soda ash. Yes, muriatic would knock down the pH.

    I suspect the accuracy of your readings b/c pH SHOULD drift up with a high alk. Adding a bunch of borax should take it thru the roof!

    Let us know about your testing methods. . .
    ~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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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Hi AK and low PH and Borax

    When TA is high, aerating the water is a good way to raise the PH. Borax will raise the TA a little, soda ash will raise the TA a lot, aeration won't raise the TA at all.
    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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    Re: Hi AK and low PH and Borax

    I am using a test kit that I purchased. I only monitor the PH CL and AK.

    Can I drive down the AK wqith muratic acid then ad Boraz. Also does liquid bleach drive up the AK?

    Where can I find how much Borax to ad to a 23,000 galon pool?

    Thanks for your help

    Peter
    40 X 26 Free Form Pool with attached 9 X 7 Spa raised 18" with 8 Jets and Spillover, and an Art Rock Waterfall/Grotto with accent rocks, 26,000 gallons
    Intelliflo VF-3050 for Pool, VS-3050 for Spa Jets, VS-3050 for Waterfall/Grotto, Quad DE 80, 400K BTU Mastertemp, Intellitouch i7+3 w/ iS10 10 Function Spa-Side Remote, Intellichlor IC40 Salt Chlorinator, Telephone Remote, 2 Intellibrites for Pool/ 1 for Spa, Solar Panels on 2 story Roof w/ 75% coverage
    Pebble Tec Tropical Breeze
    Tsunami's Pool Build

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    In the Industry

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    Re: Hi AK and low PH and Borax

    It would make more sense to aerate as Jason suggests.

    What KIND of test kit? Is it drops-based, or strips? You need to be able to test more than just CL, pH and Alk. Other tests only need to be done occasionally (such as CYA or CH), but they are important. If you have a pool store that uses reliable testing methods, you could get those other tests done there, but I think it's just simpler to have one's own complete kit.

    The pool calculator will help you determine chemical quantities to add, but first you need to make sure your testing equipment/supplies are reliable.
    ~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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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Silver Spring, MD
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    Re: Hi AK and low PH and Borax

    There is only one way to lower alkalinity, explained in these instructions.

    Adding muriatic acid will lower both PH and alkalinity. Adding borax will raise both of them back up. If you use acid and borax and get the PH back exactly to where it started, the alkalinity will actually end up slightly higher than where it started. Aeration is the only way to raise PH without raising alkalinity. Then you can add more acid and repeat.
    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

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Re: Hi AK and low PH and Borax

    What is the best and quickest way to aerate? I use a pum hooked yup to a garden sprinklet.
    40 X 26 Free Form Pool with attached 9 X 7 Spa raised 18" with 8 Jets and Spillover, and an Art Rock Waterfall/Grotto with accent rocks, 26,000 gallons
    Intelliflo VF-3050 for Pool, VS-3050 for Spa Jets, VS-3050 for Waterfall/Grotto, Quad DE 80, 400K BTU Mastertemp, Intellitouch i7+3 w/ iS10 10 Function Spa-Side Remote, Intellichlor IC40 Salt Chlorinator, Telephone Remote, 2 Intellibrites for Pool/ 1 for Spa, Solar Panels on 2 story Roof w/ 75% coverage
    Pebble Tec Tropical Breeze
    Tsunami's Pool Build

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    Join Date
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    Solon, Iowa
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    Re: Hi AK and low PH and Borax

    If you have an air compressor, I attached mine to a 50 ft 'soaker' or sprinkler hose (the one with all the holes in it) and tied a weight to it (like a milk jug filled with sand). I left the hose curled up and secured with ties to keep everything compact. I set my regulator at about 30 lbs and just let the compressor run. This introduces a furious (!) stream of tiny bubbles coming up from the bottom so there's plenty of exposure of the rising air to the pool water. Half the pool looked like a boiling cauldron.

    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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