Gunite Pool Staining

ski

Member
Apr 28, 2012
14
Niceville, Florida
Looking for some advice and I apologize if this is not the proper location for this post, wasn't sure where it began. Live in NW Florida and I have a 6,000 gallon gunite salt water pool built in 2005. For the most part the pool has been great with the exception of the light brown stains (see attached pics). It seems to get a bit worse every year, when the sun is up and the water clear not so noticeable, however when the equipment is off it's pretty prevalent with still water. I tried some stuff from pinch-a-penny which did nothing but make my water sudsy and cloudy for days. I fear the pool is going to have to be drained to resolve it with some great expense, love to hear some ideas and possible solutions on how to remove these stains. Thanks in advance! IMG_1919.jpgIMG_1920.jpgIMG_1921.jpg
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
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Jan 17, 2012
17,628
Evans, Georgia
So do you know if they're metal or organic?? How do you chlorinate? Have you added any copper containing algaecides to the pool? Is your pool filled with well water?

Try to hold a chlorine puck against the stain for a couple of min and see if it changes it? This is the usual test to determine if they are organic stains.

Then get a handful of cheap chewable Vitamin C tablets and put them in a sock and bang it up a bit to crush them. Place that against an area of stain an see if that alters it? It might even get darker. But this tells us its metal stains usually.

Let us know what happens. Stay out of the pool store...they just sell you stuff that rarely fixes the problem

Maddie :flower:
 

ski

Member
Apr 28, 2012
14
Niceville, Florida
Thanks very much for the reply, it is a salt water system so I rarely add chlorine, the system keeps the pool pretty much algae free. I have used algaecides from time to time. Several times there is a small capacitor that will burn out in my salt water generator and by the time I got a part in I had a yellow algae farm going. I'm pretty certain the stuff I bought was copper based. I rubbed and rubbed a chlorine puck on a stained area and it seemed to have no effect, that was disappointing since it seemed like it might be an easy fix. I will pick up some vitamin C today and give that a try, if it is metal what will the remedy be? We have city water, no well water and of course rain is the only other source of water I use. Again, thanks for the help, each year this staining seems to get a little worse and really like to see what my options are.
 

Brentr

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Oct 18, 2009
3,372
Jacksonville, FL
Hey Ski welcome to TFP:wave: You might also want to post a set of full tests and also fill in your pool specs and equipment in the sig bar below. Also post how you are testing your pool water. All this would be helpful when trying to diagnose and fix issues. Hope this helps:cheers:
 

YippeeSkippy

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Jan 17, 2012
17,628
Evans, Georgia
While waiting for test results, I would like to also request a location be put in your information on the left side

<-----over there by your name.

Thanks :)

If you've been using copper containing algaecides (which don't actually *kill* algae y'know? It is a preventative..but stores wouldn't sell as much just saying that) I can imagine that might be your problem. Test the Vit.C and let us know.

Pool School - Metals in the Water and Metal Stains

Maddie :flower:
 

ski

Member
Apr 28, 2012
14
Niceville, Florida
Well I conducted the Vitamin C test and if you look at the attached photos in just 15 minutes the stain darkened where the sock sat on the stain. So any advice on the best way to proceed from here.IMG_1926.jpg I really appreciate all the help and great advice!

- - - Updated - - -

Sorry, this is the before pictureIMG_1925.jpg
 

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YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
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Jan 17, 2012
17,628
Evans, Georgia
Well, how likely is it you can drain and refill the pool?

If you were to use a sequestrant to get the metals in to solution (off the walls we would hope, and into the water) you then drain that water and re-fill with metal free water.

Or, you commit to the use of sequestrant on a routine basis as it does break down in the pool and need re-dosing.

I add this link but have no experience with this- The Zero Alkalinity Acid Treatment

Maddie :flower:
 

ski

Member
Apr 28, 2012
14
Niceville, Florida
Unfortunately, draining the pool is a problem, very high water table here and it is advised to keep water in the pool. There are so many products out there claiming to remove the stain and remove the copper from the water, wondering if any are better than others and ligit.
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
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Jan 17, 2012
17,628
Evans, Georgia
Nothing "removes" copper, it just get sequestered so that you don't realize you're swimming in it. You won't see it in the water, only when it stains as it lays on the pool.

Now, thinking about it, you certainly are in a great situation to drain and replace over time. FL gets so much rain you can collect the rain in a rain barrel and use it to slowly replace your pool water. Or if you know you're going to get a gusher, lower the water level an inch and let the rain re-fill it. Over time this can work wonders. Or do many partial drains down 1/4 of the pool then refill. Do it a few times and see how that works for you yet you've not emptied the pool at any one time.

Until then you're just going to be stuck with sequestrant use I imagine. I'd get a sample to the pool store and ask them to test for metals. Anything over 0.3 is a problem.

Maddie :flower:
 

jimsam

Active member
May 14, 2012
29
Collin County, Texas
Can anybody recommend one product over another? There are a lot of products out there, which products work and which don't?

For example:
Clorox Scale Metal and Stain Control - Yay or Nay
Metal Out - Stain and Mineral Remover - Yay or Nay
Jack's Magic The Blue Stuff - Yay or Nay
Something else better???

Thanks!
 

YippeeSkippy

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Jan 17, 2012
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Evans, Georgia
Can anybody recommend one product over another? There are a lot of products out there, which products work and which don't?

Per Pool School: "Sequestrants based on HEDP, phosphonic acid, or phosphonic acid derivatives are the most effective. ProTeam's Metal Magic and Jack's Magic The Pink Stuff (regular), The Blue Stuff (fresh plaster), and The Purple Stuff (salt) are some of the top brand sequestrants. There are also other brands with similar active ingredients, some of which are noticeably less expensive."
 

ski

Member
Apr 28, 2012
14
Niceville, Florida
If I understand correctly from what I have read on this site and other places the Sequestrants will not remove the copper, just keep it suspended and keep it from settling and causing further stains, however it won't do much for existing stains. I like the slow water replacement advice, however can anyone recommend a product to remove existing stains without draining the water? Thanks again
 

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