Borates

mynewpool

Well-known member
Mar 17, 2010
1,082
Spring, TX
I was thinking about doing this, but how much does it really help? I do not have any real issues with pH moving and no algae or anything. Would I see any advantages of doing this? Also how do you test for borates?

Thanks.
 

orthofish

LifeTime Supporter
Jan 21, 2009
562
Northern Middle Tn.
Just added them to my pool. Love it :-D Water seems softer and the bug population has dropped. I too, don't have a problem with algae nor pH drift, but thought I would do it anyway. Glad I did.
 

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,880
Silver Spring, MD
I certainly noticed a significant improvement in both sparkle and water feel after adding borates. The majority of people who try it like borates, but a few people don't notice any difference and consider it a waste of money/effort.
 

jimarbuckle

LifeTime Supporter
May 12, 2010
18
I've been thinking about adding borates to my pool, now that my ammonia problems are behind me, but my TA is in the 180 ppm range right now (I did a partial drain and refill to help with the aforementioned ammonia problem and local water supply TA is >300 ppm). In the So-you-want-to-add-borates sticky, it says: 1. First, adjust your TA to your target value. (This is actually the hardest part of this whole procedure.) This should be around 70-80 ppm for SWGs.

Questions:
* Do I truly need to get the TA down to the 70-80 ppm level before adding borates? If so, why? What will be hurt?
* Or, can I use the borates to raise the pH and then add corresponding levels of acid and thereby have a net reduction in my TA?

As always, I appreciate the help.
 

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,880
Silver Spring, MD
You can add borates before or after lowering your TA. Many people find lowering TA after adding borates to be more difficult, but it still works.

The combination of adding borax and acid causes a small net increase in the TA level.
 

mynewpool

Well-known member
Mar 17, 2010
1,082
Spring, TX
frustratedpoolmom said:
Borate test strips.
I don't use borates...
Where can you pick them up at, I assume any pool store place?

So I am dumbfounded, why test strips are so inaccurate for everything else, why do you use them for borates?

Thanks.
 

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,880
Silver Spring, MD
I don't think anyone makes a good drop based test for borates. Fortunately, you don't need to be at all precise about your borate level.
 

mynewpool

Well-known member
Mar 17, 2010
1,082
Spring, TX
frustratedpoolmom said:
LOL, I know.
You can try Leslie's, but you may have to order them on line. TFtestkits.net sells them, among others.
Yea I saw tftestkits has them. I may give it a try, but that is a lot of acid and borax. Mine says like 5 gallons of acid and 17 boxes for borax.