For anyone wanting to successfully use baquacil....

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anthonypool89

Gold Supporter
Aug 26, 2016
581
Berks County, PA
You will need to use more than just the standard Oxidizer and Sanitizer / Algistat. I've added both a product called Ahhsome (once a month) and also Aqua Finesse tablets. Frequent addition of Oxidizer is needed also.
 
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zea3

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2009
12,642
Houston, Texas
It’s good that you have found a way to make bianguinide work for you, since it is your preferred sanitizer. I also appreciate your openness about the cost of using it effectively, and the amount of attention it requires to be successful. It is a sanitation system that is not very forgiving once mistakes are made that cause water quality to decline. This is all good information to have when making a choice between chlorine and bianguinide for sanitation. Thank you for sharing your insights with us.
 

Pool-Dad

Member
Oct 6, 2019
12
Connecticut
Thanks anthonypool89. I am a new pool owner (open ~3 weeks) embarking on the Baquacil journey and hearing some positive comments and practical advice is welcome. My water is currently very clear but my and my local pool store’s testing shows chemical levels are consistently low. Trying my best to learn what chemicals and cadence to adhere to. So far they’ve only recommended I add Oxidizer and Sanitizer/Algistat (1.5G and 0.5G each last week and this week). I’ll look into your regimen as I progress.

I do have two questions. Are you relying on just the test strips for testing? And how often do you test (once weekly)?
 

anthonypool89

Gold Supporter
Aug 26, 2016
581
Berks County, PA
As stated above, I doubt that using Oxidizer and Sanitizer / Algistat alone will prevent the typical WWM and pink slime that often crop up with baquacil. Actually, I haven't seen pink slime in the past few years.
 
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Pool-Dad

Member
Oct 6, 2019
12
Connecticut
Agree that it hasn’t been cheap but it also hasn’t been too difficult (so far). Right now the water is looking crystal clear (see image below). Maybe the sand filter does help? Currently my biggest issue is testing. The strips are too imprecise for me. Would you mind giving me the names of the kits you use?
 

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anthonypool89

Gold Supporter
Aug 26, 2016
581
Berks County, PA
Pool-Dad....glad it's going well. Wish I could say the same. All of a sudden my pool is a disaster - looks more like milk than pool water. I think that, since it came on so quickly, it's due to the farmer doing major cutting in the fields on all sides of us. It went from nearly crystal clear to major accumulation of white water mold within 24 hours. So it's going to be a battle until they are done raking and bailing. Plus the bugs that came out of the fields are swarming around me all the time I'm working out there of late. Gotta say, there are times I could walk away from ALL of this - the pool, the big lawn, all the mowing, trimming, etc. and downsize into a nice 55+ community where I don't have to do any of the maintenance!!! It all ain't getting any easier. Good luck...hope yours stays clear for you. Don't be hesitant to use the Oxidizer. I looked back through my records and notice that last year generally every 4-5 days I added 2 quarts. Do you have any Ahhsome or the Aqua Finesse tablets? I truly think that with just the Bio-Guard products, etc. it wouldn't be enough - at least that was my experience over the years since the product called "Assist" was eliminated.

Regarding test kits - I use 2 Taylor kits: K-2006 and K-1725 (but only use the Peroxide side of the kit as explained previously). Then the other one I use is the LaMotte kit for Biguanide and pH (but only use that one for biguanide - it's ok but likely not as accurate as the 1725 would be IF I could get past the quotes issue that interferes with the color change.
 
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anthonypool89

Gold Supporter
Aug 26, 2016
581
Berks County, PA
The WWM mold issue has resurfaced (literally - as in pieces floating on top of the water) but I attribute it to the work done in the fields. We're surrounded by farmland, and depending on which way the wind blows, who knows what is introduced to the water. The large farm equipment is only literally 10-15 feet away from the west edge of the pool. For whatever reason, along with the field cutting this year has come a swarm of tiny bugs. Filter was full of them this afternoon. Water is starting to look better after a gallon of Oxidizer and change of DE. Still not sure about swimming in it tonight though - can barely see the drain. ☹
 
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Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
4,472
NY
It's such a relief once the pool is finally closed for the season!!!
It shouldn't be like you are experiencing. There is a whole section of threads devoted to leaving baquacil. It does work but from many peoples testimonials, it is a huge PITA and it doesn't come cheap. I have also seen many people's conversion threads and if i ever did it myself i would drain and save myself the headache. If there are extenuating circumstances why you would have to convert the hard way, there are plenty of folks here to guide you, and previous journeys for you to read up on.
 

brettch

Well-known member
May 23, 2020
48
ND
If you plan to switch, I strongly agree with Newdude on draining and refilling unless there's a big reason not too. I just completed the conversion process on my 10k gallon pool a week or so ago. If your water source isn't a problem (metals, etc) or expensive, you'll likely come out ahead in time and money if you just drain, refill and mostly start over. You'd still have to do the conversion process for whatever bit is left from water you couldn't drain, but it will be much faster and require far less LC. I put in well over 30 gallons of 12.5% LC over about a 2 week period to completely finish the conversion process. I'd give an exact number, but forgot to log the addition in PoolMath a number of times. With 20/20 hindsight, I could've drained to near empty, filled the pool and been money ahead for certain and most likely finished the process in a few days.
 
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anthonypool89

Gold Supporter
Aug 26, 2016
581
Berks County, PA
Agree that it hasn’t been cheap but it also hasn’t been too difficult (so far). Right now the water is looking crystal clear (see image below). Maybe the sand filter does help? Currently my biggest issue is testing. The strips are too imprecise for me. Would you mind giving me the names of the kits you use?
Is that a gunite pool? Looks like it. If it is, be aware that if you DO start to encounter mold - it likes to hide in any crevices and rough areas along the sides and bottom. If it seems that the bottom appears unusually smooth and/or slippery - brush it. I think my mistake the past few days was noticing this and not acting on it. Sweeping alone often will not get enough of it. The best way is probably to use something to clear out the lines occasionally - a floc, etc. - I can't do this real easily being that my filter system does not have any sort of multi-port valve and so I cannot vacuum to waste. My pool can be (and often is) crystal clear, but yet I can still get some mold in between the tiles and so have to be vigilant about keeping all of that clean as well. It's possible to make it work with baquacil, but it is NOT a low-maintenance method by any means. Hate to refer to it as a sort of constant 'battle', but that is essentially the case. You keep it (the water mold) in check, you don't get rid of it entirely - at least I've never been able to.
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
14,557
Evans, Georgia
For as many years as you've written here your dilemmas regarding Bacqua....yet you refuse to change to chlorine. Think of all the money and time you'd gain by getting rid of that troublesome product!

Sadly @Pool-Dad doesn't realize that his water isn't clear like chlorine could give him. Its like pool stores have y'all over a barrel buying these expensive chems. Go TFPC, Pool-Dad!! You won't regret it!

maddie
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
4,472
NY
+1 with Maddy for sure. @Pool-Dad compare your pic to these.
 
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robhdrider

Active member
Jul 7, 2012
35
Southeastern IL
I installed my pool 30 years ago next month, started out on Baquacil as I wanted something that worked with my travel schedule. For the first couple of years it worked great, it was just an expensive option. Then I started to fight the white mold, fought it for a few years then got pink slime, it was never the same again. Eventually I decided to switch to chlorine and just accept there would be times when traveling that the pool would get away from me. This worked reasonably well for several years but I would always fight keeping the pool clear as I got later in the season, this was before I knew about high CYA level effects, but I did learn that if it got bad enough I could dump about a third of the water and I would be good again. Then about 10 years ago I switched to a SWG, this solved most of my problems though I would fight keeping the chlorine levels high enough with just the SWG. Then I found TFP which answered so many of the questions I had and solved my remaining problems. I have been a believer for several years now and looking back I would fill in my pool before ever going back to Baquacil. The conversion is a pain and the option of just replacing the water should be evaluated, but once done you will wonder why you invested so much time and money in that system when the chlorine option is simple and the pool is always perfect.
 

anthonypool89

Gold Supporter
Aug 26, 2016
581
Berks County, PA
In pool-dad's defense, while I also thought his water wasn't what I'd consider "crystal clear"; it is very possible to obtain at least close to what I'd call clear with baquacil. For the last several years - even with the presence of some WWM mostly along the tiles or on the sides, I've still had water that generally looks like this. I think that likely some of the additional products I've been adding maintain the clarity despite the presence of some of the organic undesirables. Prior to using Ahhsome and the Aqua Finesse tablets, I generally would have cloudier conditions a good part of the time than what you see here.

As to traveling during the summer (which I prefer not to do if I can avoid it), for peace of mind I always remove the DE grids and just circulate water. I have someone maintain the chemical program, but otherwise I just handle the water conditions once I get home. With baqua, as anyone knows who has used it, the filter pressure changes are unpredictable. It can go a month without significant increase but also sometimes there are short cycles. I don't expect any of my relatives to dismantle the filter and/or backwash. So, without the grids, at least I'm achieving maximum pump pressure and circulation -has actually worked pretty well even if I'm gone for several weeks.

IMG_6245.jpegIMG_6246.jpgIMG_6246.jpg
 
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