Fiberglass Stains

mbar

LifeTime Supporter
Apr 24, 2007
257
Ashland PA
JasonLion is right on the money, and explained it very well :) You can put the sequestering agent in now, because some sequestering agents also lower ph, and some of your stain may lift off. It doesn't matter when you put the sequestering agent in the water while doing the ascorbic acid treatment, as long as it is in there before you add chlorine! I would order the ascorbic acid if you want to do the treatment next Tues, because sometimes it takes a few days to come in.
 

D

Member
Jun 3, 2007
13
New Jersey
I bought the metal out stuff. It's called Metal Free by Natural Chemistry. Per the guy at the store, it's made to be used along with asorbic acid (his was 3 times the price of what I ordered on the website). He says do NOT use the Metal free until I put in the asorbic acid. As I said earlier, I ordered that online and will do the treatment next week when it comes in. I'd like to do the Metal Free now but maybe I'll wait. Could his advice to wait until I have the asorbic acid be based on the brand he sells? If there is a possibility of the water turning cloudy or worse, I'll wait til after the Sat party. The bottle doesn't indicate how to use it other than at first fill, beginning of season, close of season, and weekly as preventative. I mean as far as possible cloudiness or using the asorbic acid. It gives the amouts to use.

Turns out that 3 of my 5 jets are movable, 2 are stationary. I re-directed the moveable ones towards the surface as recommended.

Still lowering the PH. Very gradually, I guess.

Will keep you posted.
 

TomU

LifeTime Supporter
Apr 22, 2007
93
Wyoming, Michigan
I have a 15' easy set Intex and also use well water to fill my pool. When filling the pool last year the water looked fairly clear. The next day the water was orange and quite a bit of the iron had precipitated out onto the bottom. I started adding metal free and changed the cartridge filter every couple of days. After a week or two of repeated Metal Free applications and filter changes, I reached a point where the water was very clear and the filter would no longer turn orange between changes. I'm under the assumption that the Metal Free bound to the iron in such a way as to allow the filter to completely remove it.

Based on the discussion in this thread (and others), it sounds like the iron does not really get removed from the water, just bound to the Metal Free. This doesn't seem to match the experience I had. Is it possible that the improved filtration capability of the filter was actually what was removing the iron? As a side note, the local pool store sells a small cartridge filter that screws on a garden hose for filling hot tubs. They claim it will filter iron out of the water. It looks very similar to a filter used on a home drinking water filtration system.
 
G

Guest

NaturalChemistry's stain free is simply ascorbic acid that is expensive. I have found that Metal Free (EDTA) is not as effective as HEDP based sequesterants like Proteam's Metal Magic or Jack's Magic but it does work. Natural Chemistry recommends putting in the ascorbic acid first and filtering for an hour then adding the sequesterant. This way the sequesterant will bind with the iron that redissolves into solution.

AS far as iron being caught in the filter. If the iron precipitates out of solution and is not deposited as stain then it will be caught in the filter. The orange color is caused by precipitated iron oxide, which we commonly call rust. The sequesterant will bind with the unprecipitated iron that is still in the water and keep it from depositing as stain. The iron oxide will filter out. The metal free would have had no effect on the precipitated iron.
 

D

Member
Jun 3, 2007
13
New Jersey
My cholorine is down to 0. After adding 3#s of PH down, the PH was still in the 7.4 range.
I put in a pound of asorbic acid at 7am. The stains on the walls appear to be gone. There were still some on the floor and the general dirt look on the walls.
About 7:30 I put in another pound - by pouring it down the sides again.
I'll add the metal out about 8:30.
So far, things seem to be going as expected. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

I'll get some baking soda today. Where do I get the big bags of it? Grocery store??

Will keep you posted with my actions and the results and, hopefully, you'll keep me in a clean pool!

Thanks!!
 
G

Guest

D said:
My cholorine is down to 0. After adding 3#s of PH down, the PH was still in the 7.4 range.
I put in a pound of asorbic acid at 7am. The stains on the walls appear to be gone. There were still some on the floor and the general dirt look on the walls.
About 7:30 I put in another pound - by pouring it down the sides again.
I'll add the metal out about 8:30.
So far, things seem to be going as expected. Please correct me if I'm wrong.
You're soing fine. Just filter for about 24 hours and the stains should be all gone.
I'll get some baking soda today. Where do I get the big bags of it? Grocery store??
In my area Costco has 15 lb bags for $5 but the pool store I work at sells a 50lb bag of Arm and Hammer sodium bicarbonate for $19.99 so don't forget to check the local pool stores if you are planning on getting a LOT of it. It's not the USP grade sold for food and drug use but it's fine for swimming pool use. I would wait until the staining is gone before adding the baking soda since it will raise your pH
Will keep you posted with my actions and the results and, hopefully, you'll keep me in a clean pool!

Thanks!!
 

DavidD

Well-known member
Mar 29, 2007
91
D,

It's OK to go ahead and get the baking soda now but don't add it until you need it. I rarely have to raise my alk and you may never with well water. Remember what Marie said, "keep your pH between 7 and 7.4 and keep your alkalinity between 80 - 100." This has always worked for me to slow down the re-occurrence of staining as well as only "shocking" when absolutely necessary. You are in great hands here and seem to be making progress, not only with your stains but in taking control of your pool. Congratulations! :cheers:

Dave
 

DavidD

Well-known member
Mar 29, 2007
91
If the "Stain Nazi" agrees with the advice you have been given, I guarantee you are on the right track :) .....

Dave
 

D

Member
Jun 3, 2007
13
New Jersey
The more I learn, the more confused I get! Please keep working with me as I DETERMINED to learn it all! - or at least some of it!

I know I'm jumping the gun a bit by taking readings now and not waiting until 24 hours after the asorbic acid and sequestriant treatment but I wanted to get an idea how much of what to have on hand.

Marie's instructions for the asorbic acid treatment say to use baking soda 24 hours later to raise alkalinity and PH - PER TEST RESULTS, of course. Somewhere I remember reading that the treatment will lower both. Yes, I know it's less than 12 hours later but here's what I got:
PH about the same as before 7.4-7.6 (after adding 3# of PH Down)
Alkalinity: 210!!!! I checked it twice thinking that I had screwed up

Neither was reduced by the asorbic acid, so far.

As an experiment, I tested the source water also.
PH: Below the scale on my test kit. It wasn't close to 6.8 which is as far down as it goes.
Alk: 30 to 40 - came up so fast I wasn't prepared

I'll take new readings in the AM which will be after the 24 hours.

In case you haven't guessed, I have more questions:
How do I lower the alkalinity? I have the jets pointed to ripple the surface.
Are the high PH and alk due to the cholorine, cya, and calcium hardness? If so, this is something that will be ongoing. If not, what are the possible causes? I also add to the water Heat$avr Liquid Blanket which is advertised to NOT effect the chemicals. Also, and maybe this is a biggie, I have a LOT of tree dirt falling into the pool. Leaves, etc. And we have just discovered that the gypsy moth problem that we thought was small is huge. I think a lot of the stuff I'm finding in the pool, on the concrete, driveway, etc
is gypsy moth catapellar dirt. Gross!!!!
 

mbar

LifeTime Supporter
Apr 24, 2007
257
Ashland PA
Here is the thing - all pools react differently - sometimes the ph and alkalinity go way down, and sometimes they are not too affected. What were your ph and alkalinity before the stain treatment? Sometimes your ph can go up according to what is falling into the water. When I opened my pool this spring I had a ph of almost 8, and usually when I open it is below 6.8. I also had a lot of algae :( I don't know what is in the Heat$avr Liquid Blanket. So what I am saying is I don't know why your ph and alkalinity are that high :? I can however, tell you how to lower them. You use muriatic acid to take the ph down to 7 and aerate the water - either by turning the jets up and making it bubble, getting a fountain, or adding air to the water in some way. As the ph goes up, the alkalinity will gas off, bringing the alk. down. Everytime the ph gets up to 7.3 or 7.4, you have to add acid again to start the process going. With ph over 7.5, as yours was, the aeration will not work. It amazes me at how many different outcomes I hear when doing the stain treatment. It is hard for me to understand too :roll: The only thing I can say is that when the stain is gone, and you have the sequestering agent in, you can start to balance the water. Sometimes it takes awhile, and sometimes it is easy. This year I put some ascorbic acid in - not a whole treatment and I didn't have any problems rebalancing the water - other years, it took sooo long :cry: As far as what to have on hand - just some baking soda, borax and bleach - Just keep posting your results, and we will help you any way we can :-D. I have the gypsy moths too - and I know what you mean about the little black stuff :-D
 

D

Member
Jun 3, 2007
13
New Jersey
Thanks Marie. I thought maybe there was something I could control that would stop the Alk from rising as it seems hard to lower.
This morning the PH was still 7.4-7.6 so I added the PH down (couldn't find muratic acid last night). I used about half the amount on the BleachCal. I'll check it in 2 hours and see if I need more. I turned the jets as high as I could but they barely ripple the surface. I'll have to find a way to get air in to lower the alk which was 210 again this AM. (Shoot some in with the air compressor?)
I think I'm seeing some algae. I looked for the polyquat but didn't have the ingredient list with me and wasn't sure I had the right stuff in hand. I'll get it this morning.
No noticable stains!

The relationship between alk and PH when balancing the water seems very complicated. I'll read up on that.

I need to backwash. Will doing that effect this procedure????
Cholorine 0
PH 7.4-7.6
ALK 210
The absorbic acid was put in early Tues AM. The sequestarant was put in late Tues AM. Adjusting PH today. Tommorrow is when I plan to adjust cholorine. Will need to add polyquat ASAP (I think).

Thanks all!
 

mbar

LifeTime Supporter
Apr 24, 2007
257
Ashland PA
As long as all of the stains are gone, you should backwash. Is your water cloudy at all? You can start to add chlorine after you get your ph down to under 7.4. If your water is not cloudy, I wouldn't worry so much about your alkalinity. Just keep your ph under 7.3 - closer to 7 if you can (7 is neutral) This way you will be able to lower the alk all the time with the jets turned toward the surface. Maybe you can find a piece of hose that will fit in the return and have it facing the top of the water to aerate. You can start to add chlorine slowly - just add about 2ppms at a time. Don't take it any higher than the minimum on your cya chart. Let me know if you have any other questions- you are dong great :-D
 

D

Member
Jun 3, 2007
13
New Jersey
Yes, the pool is getting cloudy. I'm sure the stains are gone. If they weren't, I don't think I could see them today thru the cloudy water.
Backwashed this AM.
Readings:
CYA: 0
PH: 7.0
Alk: 180
Didn't bother with the cholorine as it's been 0 for days now.

I'm ready to add cholorine. I know Marie recommends bleach at this time but I'm going to start with 1/2 a puck due to the 0 reading on the CYA. Since I have them (from the PB) I don't see the point of buying CYA now. The Best Guess Chart and the BleachCal say add .4 gal of cholorine now. Don't know how that converts to the puck so I'll take a cholorine and CYA reading again in a few hours after the puck has had time to work.

I think there are some floating battery operated fountains that can be thrown on the pool. I'll look into that for areation.
 

mbar

LifeTime Supporter
Apr 24, 2007
257
Ashland PA
I would start with a puck in the skimmer basket - this way it gets continuous chlorine feed. I always start with a puck in the skimmer which is not good only if you have a cartridge filter. This way when the water hits the puck, if any metals fall out it will fall out on the filter. I don't put it in the ascorbic acid treatment because a lot of people have high cya, and it is NOT good for a cartdrige filter. I wouldn't worry about going over in chlorine right now, because I am sure the chlorine will be eaten up as soon as it hits the water. especially since your water is cloudy. It will be eaten up by the ascorbic acid and anything else in there that needs to be broken down. With a cya of 0, you won't hit shock levels till you get to 10ppms, so don't worry even if you get to 5. It can sometimes take a couple of days to be able to hold chlorine. Just test frequently and add it back up to 2ppms as often as you can. You may want to get some cya in there, because without it you won't be able to hold chlorine on a sumny day. I would suggest putting a pound of it in a sock and tieing it off near a return. It will take a while to get your cya up using just pucks. I use a combinatiion of pucks and bleach all year. I use bleach, but if I have to do a stain treatment, or if I go away for a couple of days I use pucks - also if my ph starts to drift up, I through a puck in. I usually like to get my cya up to 30 with stabalizer at the beginning of the year and use the pucks as I said - this way by the end of the summer I am still usually under 60 cya. You will get used to how your pool reacts and get your own routine :-D I think you will see your alkalinity coming down nicely now since you have the ph under 7.3, so I would watch and see before investing in a fountain - although they are pretty and not too expensive if you would use it :-D . So I think the important thing to do now is to stay on top of the chlorine - this way you won't get into an algae bloom and have to shock, which can start the staining again :cry: Believe me, I have been there with that :oops: . So if you have any other questions feel free to ask - and don't worry, even if the stains start to rear thier ugly heads :evil: It is easy to add a little more sequestering agent with low ph to lighten them back up :-D
 

D

Member
Jun 3, 2007
13
New Jersey
Marie, Please explain in newbie terms:

if my ph starts to drift up, I through a puck in

Does the cya in the puck help keep the ph down??
 

D

Member
Jun 3, 2007
13
New Jersey
Thanks for all the great help! Stains are gone. I'm sure if I had listened to everything I was told, I would have a beautifully clean pool. For several days I did and wanted to let you know but was too busy enjoying it!

1st thing I need to do now is order a GOOD test kit. I'm having trouble determining what values the colors match on my KMart kit. Hope I'm explaining this right. For example, the pH scale on my kit has a light pinkish orange for 7.2. Next reading is almost clear orange and is 6.8. Sometimes I'm not sure which one my water is closer to. Does the better one have a more definite reading scale? I'm trying to maintain between 7.0 and 7.2. My kit also shows Cholorine only as high as 5ppm. It jumps from 1 to 3 to 5. Does the better one have higher levels? If not, I'm not sure I understand how to shock. I could use the Best Guess Chart and the BleachCal but that would tell me how much to add. How do I measure it to know how long the water has been at shock level?

I've been checking the pH in the morning and adding acid as needed to keep the pH down to at least 7.2 as best as I can tell. I check the Cholorine in the evening and add bleach as needed to keep it up to 3-5ppm. I add water (approx 200 gal) that is low in pH and Alk almost every day using the spray on my hose and trying to areate the surface as best as possible to help reduce the alk. I have the jets up to ripple the surface also. I've added Metal out each time I add water.

Yesterday I smelled bleach around the pool and hoped it was from cleaning the concrete during the day. I was hoping it was NOT an indication that I need to shock because I did the asorbic acid treatment only one week ago and the instructions say not to shock for 2 weeks. Yesterday I also saw green algae near the light, brushed it off and assumed the filter and cholorine would take care of it.

This morning the water is green - very clear but green. I reduced the pH to 7.2, added water and metal out. Readings after 2 hours:
FC 4.0
TC 4.0
pH 7.0-7.2
Alk120
CYA 30-50

I guess I have an algae problem. As I said, if I had followed instructions, I would have added polyquat after the asorbic acid treatment but didn't because I thought I was on top of the cholorine level.

Should I shock and risk the stains coming back?
Should I shock with a non-cholorine shock?
Should I add a polyquat now?

Bleach smell indicates need to shock but FC and TC are equal meaning no need to shock. Am I wrong or is this just more proof that I need a better test kit?

I also just got a robot cleaner. Would it help get rid of the green to have that running constantly?

Thanks for all your help! You guys are the best!
 

foosboy2

Well-known member
May 14, 2012
76
Can I jump off this thread from 2007 because I have a similar issue and questions inside the thread?

I have a test kit and all my levels are always good but obviously I cannot test metal. I am on a well and use it to fill. I run it through filter that goes on the end of a hose but still am getting absolutely terrible metal stains this year. Years past were bad but this is unsightly. I know they are metal because I have already done the vitamin C test and an FYI is that I try to keep my PH lower around 7.1 to 7.3. I opened the pool this year with the absorbic acid treatment because the chlorine was 0 and followed with metal magic and things looked pretty good, probably the best in 2 years, but now the stains are the worse since putting the pool in. One other comment is that I saw some "pink gel" by some seals. I thought it was an algae but the pool store said that it was likely the result of metals.

So I went to the pool store, which I normally don't do since finding troublefreepool, to get opinion and prices on metal removing products. The pool store guy I think I actually had some respect for because he did not just try to sell me something and said that first he needed to find the level of metal before going forward. So today I will bring him a sample. He also told me some things that I was not sure if I should be alarmed or not.
1) High metals will attack the fiberglass and eat away at the bond line between the molded sections of the pool because he said most fiberglass pools are not one mold. I question this but then thought back to 2 "what I thought were deep scratches" in the pool floor after the first or second season of having the pool. I have no idea how or where these deep scratches could have come from and still don't.
2) He said that it could be an expensive and long process if I have high metal content in the pool and that if I am going to continue to fill with well water that I might have to invest in a "reverse osmosis filter" for the water going from my well into the pool. Do anyone know anything about this?


Here are my questions to the thread and the site?
1) What is the difference between a quick reply and reply to thread.
2) Why do you say "Do not shock! Do not shock for at least 2 weeks!"?
3) What are the risks of having too much chlorine in the pool other than dry skin and eyes burning?
4) What is a skimmer sock? Isn't is just like putting panyhose on the skimmer? Are there chemicals in a skimmer sock?

I will post full chemical levels and metal levels from 2 pool stores this evening.

Love this site and I tell everyone about it!
 

foosboy2

Well-known member
May 14, 2012
76
Okay, the update from the pool store is the following:

1) Chemicals were perfect especially for doing the ascorbic acid treatment with 0 FC, ph 7.4. Not sure of the others so I now asked my wife to test all chemicals with our kit so I can post.
2) No iron present and .3ppm copper (Not good but better than excessive metal, I was expecting something like 3ppm)
3) Yesterdays suggestion of the reverse osmosis filter was only if I had 3ppm or higher for copper. Today he recommended I change my filter system from a cartridge to a sand or DE filter because he said that the cartridge filters are not as effective to pull small things from the water like metal. He said I can do without a new filter but then chemicals would be more.
4) He recommended the stain remover (ascorbic acid) and run 24 hours and then add metal free. Which fine I agree with all this but not sure if these are good or Jacks or some other are better brands.
5) This is the interesting part. He said to add Ultimate Scale and stain remover as preventative maintenence every 4 to 8 weeks (I need to verify) Has anyone heard of this or have any opinion. I normally do not like adding other chemical other than the pool school recommendations but I think metal stains are a special animal especially for a well water pool owner.