For those who have converted - I want to know if there is any chlorine odor or dry feeling on the skin after swimming

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mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
2,052
OV, CA
Spent roughly $1100 for everything pre-season, but usually have a good amount left over by the close. I don't mind the seasonal overlap since the shelf life is several years on everything. However, if I'm going to convert next spring, I'll likely have a good amount to return to either of the two stores I buy from or else try to sell some on eBay (PITA in some ways due to the restrictions on mailing any sort of oxidizers - just went through that with selling 2 bottles of scale inhibitor that I had bought last year and then found out it's not compatible with biguanide).

"SWG will eliminate the mold, etc."...sure hope so....would be a bummer to go through all this and still have it!! 😠
😲$1100!!! you are almost all the way to the cost of a new SWG system! I knew running Baqua pool was more expensive but wow! At those prices I would start shopping for the parts and pieces now! I agree with @Newdude's time line. But you can install the equipment anytime and then have it ready to fire up at the first of the season after the conversion.If you can keep that Studebaker of a filter going ;) you must be fairly hands on with your equipment so I bet a DIY install is within your capabilities.. they are easy to do with some basic knowledge of electrical wiring and PCV gluing.

There is a electrode grid in the SWG that can catch detritus, but it rarely gets clogged if your filters are running. All SWG manufactures make a blank that you can install in the line for people that take their filters out during the winter months. Since the SWG cell has unions that make it easy to remove, you can put the blank in when you are doing your "non filter grid" start up.. AND while you are doing the SWG install you can throw in a valve to do the a Vac to waste
 

anthonypool89

Well-known member
Aug 26, 2016
477
Berks County, PA
Becuase back in the day they didn't realize this FC/CYA Chart and the CYA went up up up with more use of pucks and it took more Cl to sanitize... most pool stores still don't realize this CYA/Cl relationship.
Well, to give you an example of why I'm sure you're right - a few years ago I had an issue with the pool being very cloudy. In consulting with the store, they determined that my DE had been blown back into the pool. I don't recall all the particulars associated with this event, but that was the précis of it...that the DE was floating around like a cloud in the water. So I did a little experiment and quickly ascertained that DE does NOT "mix" with the water. It SINKS TO THE BOTTOM and done!! After that, I became really skeptical of advice from them. Even before, in going back over my test results (kept them for decades until just recently), I went through it all and saw many instances where they had me add this or that product that was not at all needed. Back then, I didn't even pay attention to what SI is or was on the test results. I just took the advice and paid the money. But in retrospect, I can see where the SI was often way off - either they pushed me too far towards scaling or etching zones.
 

anthonypool89

Well-known member
Aug 26, 2016
477
Berks County, PA
There is a electrode grid in the SWG that can catch detritus, but it rarely gets clogged if your filters are running. All SWG manufactures make a blank that you can install in the line for people that take their filters out during the winter months. Since the SWG cell has unions that make it easy to remove, you can put the blank in when you are doing your "non filter grid" start up.. AND while you are doing the SWG install you can throw in a valve to do the a Vac to waste
both of these sound like a good plan for what I do. Does putting the blank in involve disconnecting / reconnecting plumbing, or just easily removing the piece you're referring to without major disturbance of the rest of the plumbing? Probably have to see it all in action, etc. to really get a grasp of it.
 

anthonypool89

Well-known member
Aug 26, 2016
477
Berks County, PA
So the vacuum to waste valve would be inserted....where? Recall that my filter only has the one backwash handle. If in the down position, the water goes through the tank (whether there are grids in there or not). If up, the water is diverted to the drain (backwash) tube at the bottom of the tank. I'm not clear on where this valve would need to go. AFTER the tank or right before the return lines somewhere I imagine?
 

mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
2,052
OV, CA
Next email from the pool store. TFP is now on notice that I'm receiving "uncommon information" LOL Here it is: "Not likely for a swimming pool to have high CYA. It gets diluted through top off and rainwater. Burn out didn't and still doesn't contain cyanuric acid so it would be impossible to have high levels of CYA in your pool that burn out was used as your weekly maintenance. We see this more in Indoor pools and even that is rare. I'm not sure what internet sites you are using, but unfortunately you are getting uncommon information.

Bet you guys didn't know you were so "uncommon"???? 😳
I would say we are uncommon for sure... the protocol this site is based on was the result of some pool chemistry research that was done in the 60's and 70's... if you really want to read up on i,t its in the Deep End forums. Basically it was realized there is a relationship between the amount of CYA and Cl where there is a sweet spot for best chlorine effectiveness. Pool stores don't use this information. They operate on the assumption you just outlined.. that there will be enough rain dilution to keep the CYA in check. What if it doesn't and the products that you listed above, continue to add CYA to the pool. At some point your Chlorine addition becomes less and less effective. THAT is what makes this websites approach to pool maintenance different. And different from the pool stores. The store won't understand this concept because it flies in the face of years of pool industry practices. So we on the forum have realized you need to either follow the pool store's process or ours. The two cannot be mixed.
 
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mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
2,052
OV, CA
both of these sound like a good plan for what I do. Does putting the blank in involve disconnecting / reconnecting plumbing, or just easily removing the piece you're referring to without major disturbance of the rest of the plumbing? Probably have to see it all in action, etc. to really get a grasp of it.
Look at the pics others have posted of their SWG's in your threads. There are two unions at either end of the cell... just unscrew those put the blank in (which is essentially a tube) and screw it back together... oh, make sure the pumps are off when you do it... easy peasy!
 

mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
2,052
OV, CA
Well, to give you an example of why I'm sure you're right - a few years ago I had an issue with the pool being very cloudy. In consulting with the store, they determined that my DE had been blown back into the pool. I don't recall all the particulars associated with this event, but that was the précis of it...that the DE was floating around like a cloud in the water. So I did a little experiment and quickly ascertained that DE does NOT "mix" with the water. It SINKS TO THE BOTTOM and done!! After that, I became really skeptical of advice from them. Even before, in going back over my test results (kept them for decades until just recently), I went through it all and saw many instances where they had me add this or that product that was not at all needed. Back then, I didn't even pay attention to what SI is or was on the test results. I just took the advice and paid the money. But in retrospect, I can see where the SI was often way off - either they pushed me too far towards scaling or etching zones.
Well there ya go! In my experience pool stores in general don't keep up with the latest stuff. AND sometimes our recommendations don't align with their desire to sell you pool supplies.. I'm always amazed at what they charge for stuff that can be purchased in a more generic form in the baking department of grocery store! And these days pool store employees are instructed to read off the printed sheet.. they really don't understand the chemistry at all.
 

mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
2,052
OV, CA
You will no doubt have to relearn your pool service procedures after switching to Cl.. but its not that difficult. I assume you've read all the support info in the pool school. Once you get an SWG dialed in, its as close as you will get to a set it and forget it system.
 

anthonypool89

Well-known member
Aug 26, 2016
477
Berks County, PA
So what would the best advice be.....switch to sand and continue with biguanide (as the store is suggesting) or stay with my antique filter / DE and switch to chlorine and then possibly SWG? I'm not liking the idea of what to do with 300 pounds of spent sand. My friend lives on 14 acres and so "disposes" of it. I don't have anywhere to go and don't feel like starting to create a beach or barrier island somewhere near the pool. I already have what vaguely resembles a pitcher's mound from always hosing off my DE grids at the same place in the yard!!!
 

mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
2,052
OV, CA
So the vacuum to waste valve would be inserted....where? Recall that my filter only has the one backwash handle. If in the down position, the water goes through the tank (whether there are grids in there or not). If up, the water is diverted to the drain (backwash) tube at the bottom of the tank. I'm not clear on where this valve would need to go. AFTER the tank or right before the return lines somewhere I imagine?
I'm really surprised your multi-port valve doesn't have a vacuum to waste position.. that is where it usually goes. After the pump, before the filter. But you could always put in somewhere else in the line if you plan on using it only when the filter grids are out.
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
3,868
NY
So what would the best advice be.....switch to sand and continue with biguanide (as the store is suggesting) or stay with my antique filter / DE and switch to chlorine and then possibly SWG? I'm not liking the idea of what to do with 300 pounds of spent sand. My friend lives on 14 acres and so "disposes" of it. I don't have anywhere to go and don't feel like starting to create a beach or barrier island somewhere near the pool. I already have what vaguely resembles a pitcher's mound from always hosing off my DE grids at the same place in the yard!!!
I have triple your gallons and maybe spent $150 this year. I also get none of the $1100 they sold you or whatever they will charge you to replace your filter. They don’t want to lose the customer who blindly spends so much money so they will do whatever they need to keep you spending.
 

anthonypool89

Well-known member
Aug 26, 2016
477
Berks County, PA
Hate to even have them do the necessary work involved with plumbing the SWG, etc. I told you about the geyser / exploded fernco fitting. OH...here we go..another email from them: "If you are going to stay with your DE filter then you should switch back to chlorine, but I’m sure you will have a chlorine demand for awhile during your conversion."
 

mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
2,052
OV, CA
So what would the best advice be.....switch to sand and continue with biguanide (as the store is suggesting) or stay with my antique filter / DE and switch to chlorine and then possibly SWG?
Changing your filtration method is a separate. If you want to upgrade your filter to something newer I think you need to consider everything that is out there.. Sand, Cartridge and DE filters all have their pros and cons. It depends on what your needs require. In all honesty if your current filter meets your needs, why change it. But after 30 years it may be due for an upgrade. Only you can make that judgement.

I like @Newdude's suggestion of phasing your conversion to Chlorine with your pool opening next year... get the SWG ready and then once the pool is chlorinated with liquid chlorine and stable then fire up the SWG to maintain it. Unless you have no problem doing a water exchange to do the conversion now!

BTW Personally I would stop listening to the pool store. Something to consider in their recommendation. They know if you switch from a Bacqua pool they will be losing $1100 in guaranteed business from you a year. How do you think that affects their recommendation?

Are they the only game in town? can you hire someone else to do the installation?
 
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Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
3,868
NY
Are they the only game in town? can you hire someone else to do the installation?
Most plumbers would be able to do it. Depending on the electrician that comes, they may be willing to cross over and do the plumbing part of it as well. You are definitely not married to the pool company.
 

mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
2,052
OV, CA
Hate to even have them do the necessary work involved with plumbing the SWG, etc. I told you about the geyser / exploded fernco fitting. OH...here we go..another email from them: "If you are going to stay with your DE filter then you should switch back to chlorine, but I’m sure you will have a chlorine demand for awhile during your conversion."
Of course you will have "chlorine demand" during the conversion. The process involves using chlorine to remove the Biguanide. I'm sure you read the link in Pool school about the conversion process.

And how many years did you do a baqua pool with your DE filter? sounds like they are reaching for straws to me.
 
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Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
3,868
NY
Of course you will have "chlorine demand" during the conversion. The process involves using chlorine to remove the biagunide
Do not. Do. Not. Let them scare you into thinking it will be expensive having temporary ‘high chlorine demand’ when you convert. A gallon of bleach is $3-$4. One season of Baqua products would buy hundreds of gallons. Literally. 250-350 gallons of bleach. And you may need 20 to convert. They are masters in keeping you spending $1100 by making you afraid of $80.
 
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mgtfp

Bronze Supporter
Mar 5, 2020
306
Melbourne, Australia
I already have what vaguely resembles a pitcher's mound from always hosing off my DE grids at the same place in the yard!!!
You might want to deal with this mound. Pool grade DE is classified as carcinogenic material, dangerous when inhaled. Don't have experience with DE, but others might have advice how to deal with old DE powder. Probably not problematic while wet, but I'm sure that mound will be bone dry at times.
 
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