How much filler fiber stuff in cartridge filters for copper stain treatment?

ThaRealBigBen

Member
Jul 16, 2018
12
Denham Springs, LA
I'm about to do a copper stain treatment using sulfamic acid (Jack's Magic Copper & Scale Stuff). I've got pretty much everything figured and planned out except for how much of the Filter Fiber Stuff is necessary (or just helpful) for my treatment. I ordered some just because I noticed on the Jacks Magic website that they will include 9 oz of the fiber with their kit for a 10k gallon pool. I have an 18k gallon pool, so I meant to just order an 18 oz pack of fiber from Amazon, but accidentally ordered 2 of them, so I have 36 oz of fiber.

The instructions with the fiber pack say to normally use 3 oz of fiber per 25 sqf of cartridge filter area, but I have 450 sqf of filter area, so that would mean 54 oz of fiber under normal circumstances I suppose, but maybe I shouldn't use as much for a stain treatment that is going to probably cause a significant increase in filter pressure? I don't see much guidance on the web about how much to use in this situation.

Should I just start with the 9 oz per 10k gallons, so ~18 oz (1 pack) for my 18k gallon pool?

FYI, I've also already added a CULator powerpack egg to the pump and a 1 ppm CULator bag to each of the 2 skimmers in preparation. I'm also probably going to dump at least half of my pool water once the stains lift from the bottom of the pool. I also had a bypass added to the pool heater earlier this year for that obvious reason. Just trying to do everything as optimally as possible using all the knowledge I've gained on this forum. Thanks in advance for any advice!
 

JoyfulNoise

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
May 23, 2015
15,856
Tucson, AZ
Honestly I’m not a huge fan of the protocol Jack’s Magic recommends. They have you buying stuff that is dubious at best on its efficacy. The CuLator “eggs” and bags are completely bogus in my opinion. All you really need to do is redissolve the copper stains into the pool water then dump & refill as much water as you safely can. Trying to filter out suspended solids, which may or may not form in sizes large enough to capture, is pointless and just puts a lot of strain on your filter. Not to mention the fact that the sulfamic acid is going to screw up your CC test for weeks while it slowly breaks down from chlorine oxidation.

Can you safely drain the pool? if so, then I’d just dissolve the stains and dump the water.
 
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ThaRealBigBen

Member
Jul 16, 2018
12
Denham Springs, LA
Can you safely drain the pool? if so, then I’d just dissolve the stains and dump the water.
I'm not even sure if I can safely drain the pool without it popping out or not... how can one even tell? Do you have to already have some idea of where the water table is on the exterior and a way to pump it out? I have neither. I'm in Louisiana too, where the ground can be pretty wet, so might be risky to just try. I've got a plaster pool, so I presume also a gunite shell, I bought the house about a year and a half ago, so don't have all those details.

My thought was to just drain to my sewer cleanout from the spigot at the filter while simultaneously refilling.....I normally drain after rain events to the lake behind my house but figured I wouldn't do that for this drain considering the amount and the acidity, plus it might kill my grass. I know the simultaneous drain/fill procedure will allow some mixing and therefore, more water usage for the same amount of exchange, but was just gonna go that route to be safe and eat the extra cost on water bill....or maybe I could turn off the filter and use a submersible pump to reduce the mixing?...Not sure if it's good to stop the pool pump though even after stains have lifted.
 
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ThaRealBigBen

Member
Jul 16, 2018
12
Denham Springs, LA
I've started the treatment, did it yesterday...so far, no really noticeable results, though. Is that normal? I was hoping the stains might just vanish before my eyes, but guess that's hoping too much. These stains have been around awhile, so maybe it will take awhile for them to lift.
 

ThaRealBigBen

Member
Jul 16, 2018
12
Denham Springs, LA
Trying to filter out suspended solids, which may or may not form in sizes large enough to capture, is pointless and just puts a lot of strain on your filter.
So far, I've noticed about a 2 to 3 psi drop in my filter pressure. Is that normal? Maybe the sulfamic acid is also getting a deep clean of any gradual buildup I've had on my filters and reducing back-pressure.
 

ThaRealBigBen

Member
Jul 16, 2018
12
Denham Springs, LA
Has there been any change to the stains?
I'm starting to wonder if when I did my stain ID kit months ago, maybe I should have also identified using the O2 safe shock with the #2 treatment. I notice reading online that the O2 safe shock is meant to be a pretreatment prior to adding the #2 chemical and it's for removing tougher copper stains. My copper stains seem pretty tough. Would it hurt to just go ahead and get some O2 safe shock and add it now (after having already having added the sulfamic acid)? Any idea if it would give the same results now versus having pre-treated with it?
 

JoyfulNoise

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
May 23, 2015
15,856
Tucson, AZ
You should call Jack’s Magic technical support, they can help you.

Aside from Jacks Magic ID kit, what makes you think this is copper staining? We’re you using algaecides or trichlor pucks that contained copper metal? Did you try anything else to ID the stains?
 

ThaRealBigBen

Member
Jul 16, 2018
12
Denham Springs, LA
The staining was there when I bought the house a year and a half ago. I suspect it came from the pool heater when perhaps the pH was dropped too low without bypassing. The stains are pretty localized and blotchy, more pronounced in the deep end for sure. I think that maybe the ones that are more on the bottoms of the walls may have lifted some, but they've probably been there so long that the unstained portions of the pool surface around the stains have just "weathered" differently enough now that there's just discoloration still left behind even if the stains lifted. It's hard to say.

I've attached some pictures so you can see. The first picture was from about a half week into the treatment, the second is from the first day, but not sure if you can notice any real difference. I previously took these pictures and am not at home for the weekend, so didn't get anything of the bottoms of the walls to show. I think I'll try calling Jack's tech support like you said, already had that in mind anyway.
 

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