End of Rookie Season questions


LifeTime Supporter
Jul 28, 2007
Howdy folks

I’m coming to the end of my first rookie pool season and have racked up a few questions.
Apologies for posting in one thread if they all should be in different forums!

Question 1
Now that it’s getting colder and my chlorine use has radically dropped I want to reduce my pump time. I got some good info from Jason in the “Winter Pool Care (Non closed pool)” thread but was wondering if one could be slightly more scientific about it:
For example. My pool is 15,000 gal. If I was to turn it over every other day I would need to filter 7500 gal a day.
If my pump is a 2HP Intelliflow how many hours a day would I need to run it?
I think I saw a thread about this somewhere but cannot find it now!

Question 2
As this is still a new pool the plaster curing (I guess) is continually pushing my pH up. To keep it down I am still adding about 0.75 gal of acid every week.
As a result of the acid my TA slowly drifts down and as a result of the plaster my CH is slowly drifting up.
I have let my TA drift down to 50 before bumping it up and plan to let it drift down this far again. Is this OK?
My CH has risen from 290 – 450 over 10 weeks and is still slowly rising. How high can I let this get before I should do a partial drain and refill?

Question 3
Whilst I have no doubt that BBB is the reason for my trouble free pool I can really only claim one “B” to date.
I have a SWCG so only use Bleach for shocking – but at least I’m using it.
I haven’t had the balls to put Borax in the pool this year but have been eyeing it recently on the grocery store shelves and will do it next spring!
It’s the Baking Soda where I’m having problems. I cannot find it in any packages larger than 1lb and even when I find 1lb boxes the store (Target or Kroger) usually only has 3 or 4 of them.
Where do you find big boxes of Baking Soda or am I looking for something that does not exist?!

Question 4
I have some Iron stain spots. They have been there for about a month.
They are small (smaller than a dime) and don’t seem to be getting much larger.
I can remove them with vit c tablets but they come back
I have no Iron in the water, at least that’s what two distinct pool stores are telling me.
I have been told (by the same pool stores) that ascorbic acid is only masking the stain not removing it.
How do I get rid of them for good?

Numbers today:
FC 7.0
CC 0.5
TC 7.5
pH 7.6
TA 100
CH 450
CYA 60
Borates 0
Temp 64F
Salt 4000

Thanks Again


LifeTime Supporter
Platinum Supporter
TFP Expert
May 7, 2007
Silver Spring, MD
1) The IntelliFlo is a variable speed 3 HP pump. Perhaps you mean the WhisperFlo, or some other model? Figuring out flow rate requires several additional pieces of information about your plumbing configuration, and even then it is mostly guesswork (unless you have a flow meter). I would simply scale down the time you were using over the summer by about 20% for each 10 degree drop in water temperature.

2) Keeping TA between 50 and 90 is fine. CH is manageable up to about 550, partially depending on how low you keep your TA.

3) Arm and Hammer baking soda comes in 4 lb boxes. I have seen them at Target and WalMart and at some "Warehouse" grocery stores around here. Even the 1 lb boxes are a price break over the pool store stuff, if you can find enough of them.

4) Ascorbic acid gets the iron off the surface of the pool and back into the water. Without a sequestering agent in the water it go right back on the the walls of the pool. Try adding some sequesterant. There are many different brands that are all fine. I am partial to Jack's Magic Pink, Blue, or Purple Stuff, but there are noticeably less expensive brands out there.


LifeTime Supporter
Jul 28, 2007
1) You're right WhisperFlo pump & Intellichlor SWCG. I got them mixed up! I was running 10 hours at 85F so I will try dropping it to 6 hours now the temp is at 64F

2) Thanks

3) I'll keep looking!

4) One of the things that discouraged me from a sequesterant was the cost. Jacks Purple Stuff at my local pool store is $27 (incl tax) and the dosage says: 1 Qt. per 10,000 Gallons initially, followed by 6-8 oz. per 10,000 gallons per week. For my 15000 gal pool that would be a $40 start up dose and then about $40/month for as long as I have to keep going. That more than doubles my pool maint cost. Once the sequesterant is in.... how long do I have to keep adding it for?


LifeTime Supporter
May 21, 2007
Carrollton, TX
Sams Club now has 12 pound resealable bags of Arm & Hammer baking soda. I didn't note the price though. ebay has them for $9.99 but shipping is $10!

Do the iron stains come back in the exact same place? If so it could possibly be rebar very close to or touching the surface and the pool water is rusting it. Just a thought..

I did the Borax thing this spring and don't regret it. I think you will enjoy what it does for the water. I was at about 60 - 80ppm. Still had waterboatmen though. Can't figure that one out. No other bugs; just the boatmen and backswimmers.


Well-known member
Oct 18, 2007
Cedar Hill, TN
Wal-Mart had the big, re-sealable baking soda bags during the pool season, also. (Not anymore, since the season is over) At that time I was still on Baquacil and did not notice the price. Just wondering why in the world the baking soda was doing in the pool section.
Now I know better!!!


LifeTime Supporter
Jul 28, 2007
Thanks for all the responses folks.
We have a walmart opening here in about 2 weeks time - I'll keep my eyes open for the jumbo sacks of Baking Soda!

I was really hoping somebody may also be able to answer my sequestering agent question.
Once you started adding the stuff... are you ever able to stop!? :-D


Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Platinum Supporter
TFP Expert
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
Sebring, Florida
Hi, Matt,

I'm not the metal expert by any stretch (never had it in my pool) but I'll try to give some insight. The sequestrant is there only to keep metal in solution rather than have it precipitate out as stain on your pool walls/floor. So, as long as you have metal in the water, it needs to be kept from precipitating. Lower pH can help as can the sequestrant. However, it seems to me the best choice by far is to identify how the metal got there in the first place and eliminate that source.

I see in an earlier post that you have tested negative for iron in your pool but there's really no other explanation for the iron stains.

Sorry for the long-winded response, but it seems that, if there's iron in your pool, you wil always have SOME need for a sequestrant.......how much and how often depends on many factors but I don't think it a monthly expense.

Again, I'd figure out how it was getting in there and eliminate the source......much easier to manage your pool water without iron than with it.