New Pool - SWG Startup

pskibo

Member
Jul 12, 2021
19
Wilmington, DE
Hey guys. New gunite pool owner here.. have read some great info here since joining. We filled our pool about 60 days ago and the local pool company that our PB partnered with for startup is finally coming today to start up the SWG. We have been using pucks (switched to liquid after joining TFP) for past 60 days. My issue is that when the woman called to schedule us she said we would need a ton of stabilizer (can't remember amount) for the switchover to salt. I told her that my CLA level was already at 65ppm so not sure why we need more stabilizer. She said, "Thats just what we do when we add salt for the first time". Does that make sense? I used my TF100 kit to test and I thought my current levels are right where I want to be. I plan to speak with the person who comes out to perform the service today but I just want to be prepared so I don't get BS-ed into dumping in stabilizer that I will have to drain later. Nothing irks me more than when someone says... "I have been doing this for XX years and that's just how we do it". Thanks in advance.

FC - 4
PH - 7.6
TA - 150
CH - 325
CYA - 65
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
6,428
Damascus, MD
Don't allow them to add anything that you don't want them to. It is your pool, not theirs. Do you have the salt at your house or are they bringing it? Do you have the K-1766 salt test kit? "starting" a SWG is no big deal. Salt is added first and allowed to mix for a full day. Then test the salt level and adjust as necessary. Then turn on the SWG. You can use pool math to get a general idea of what percent your SWG will need to be set at based on your pump run time. SWG pools do best when you run the pump 24x7 at low speed. Please fill out your sigline! -> https://www.troublefreepool.com/account/signature
 

pskibo

Member
Jul 12, 2021
19
Wilmington, DE
Don't allow them to add anything that you don't want them to. It is your pool, not theirs. Do you have the salt at your house or are they bringing it? Do you have the K-1766 salt test kit? "starting" a SWG is no big deal. Salt is added first and allowed to mix for a full day. Then test the salt level and adjust as necessary. Then turn on the SWG. You can use pool math to get a general idea of what percent your SWG will need to be set at based on your pump run time. SWG pools do best when you run the pump 24x7 at low speed. Please fill out your sigline! -> https://www.troublefreepool.com/account/signature
Thanks for the quick reply. The "startup" service was included in my package from the PB. They are supplying the salt. I do have the K-1766 kit
 

cowboycasey

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 3, 2013
8,645
Southern OK
Tell them not to add any CYA as yours is 70 now.. test salt and add 3/4 of it.. then test in the morning to see where you are at... if needed add the rest :)
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
6,428
Damascus, MD
Thanks for filling out your signature line. I noticed you have the Nature2 FusionSoft. Has your builder already installed the mineral cartridge? This site recommends NOT using any metals in your pool. If not already installed, and you have it, put it somewhere your builder cannot get to, and do not allow them to install it. If you don't have the cartridge, make sure they do NOT install the cartridge when they come. Keep the blankout plate in the mineral section and never remove it.
 
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pskibo

Member
Jul 12, 2021
19
Wilmington, DE
Thanks for the replies everyone. Pool company just left. They dumped in 600 lbs of salt and brushed around. I was able to talk them out of adding the stabilizer. They were going to potentially add 12 lbs of it. When I told the guy my CYA was at 70ppm he suggested adding only 4 lbs now and the rest later when it "burns off". I said no thanks and they took all the stabilizer back to the store with them. I was not aware of the mineral cartridge since we never went over any of the components of the salt system. They guy left before I could talk to him so not sure what is in the SWG at the moment. I did find what looks like 2 cartridges in my storage box. Both of these were left by the PB and the one in the box has "Install after balance" written on it. So I assume it was never installed. There is nothing on the work order copy he left that references it either. It is currently pouring outside but I will go verify once it lets up.
 

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PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
6,428
Damascus, MD
This is good news. Usually you get 2 cartridges. An orange topped starter cartridge and a yellow topped regular cartridge. The silver plate should hopefully still be in your SWG. 800lbs of salt is a lot hopefully that doesn't overshoot the mark. If you started from 0 and if your pool is 29k gallons you should be ok. Test tomorrow and see what you get. Did you get Aqualink?
 

pskibo

Member
Jul 12, 2021
19
Wilmington, DE
This is good news. Usually you get 2 cartridges. An orange topped starter cartridge and a yellow topped regular cartridge. The silver plate should hopefully still be in your SWG. 800lbs of salt is a lot hopefully that doesn't overshoot the mark. If you started from 0 and if your pool is 29k gallons you should be ok. Test tomorrow and see what you get. Did you get Aqualink?
They actually put in 600 lbs of salt (15 bags @ 40 lbs each). I have both cartridges you mention and confirmed the silver cap is still on the SWG. I did not get the Aqualink addition unfortunately. I assume I can add in the future without too much hassle.
 
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PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
6,428
Damascus, MD
They actually put in 600 lbs of salt (15 bags @ 40 lbs each). I have both cartridges you mention and confirmed the silver cap is still on the SWG. I did not get the Aqualink addition unfortunately. I assume I can add in the future without too much hassle.

Did you install the smartphone app to control your pump? 600lbs should bring you up to @ 2500 salt. Test tomorrow and see how close that is. You'll want to be right at 3000 or so but can run with less.
 

pskibo

Member
Jul 12, 2021
19
Wilmington, DE
Smartphone APP? Don't know that I have that capability but would love to know about it! The guy that came today to put the salt in said i was targeting 3200. Told me to check after 24 hours to see where i was. He left me 3 more bags of salt to add if needed. Then told me to set production to 50% and monitor chlorine levels.
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
6,428
Damascus, MD
Smartphone APP? Don't know that I have that capability but would love to know about it! The guy that came today to put the salt in said i was targeting 3200. Told me to check after 24 hours to see where i was. He left me 3 more bags of salt to add if needed. Then told me to set production to 50% and monitor chlorine levels.

His instructions are correct.

I might be wrong but I thought you could connect to Jandy VSP pumps with the onboard controller via Bluetooth. You have the LCD "JEP" display on the pump? Did your builder talk about automation at all? It would have added like $3k to your costs.
 

pskibo

Member
Jul 12, 2021
19
Wilmington, DE
His instructions are correct.

I might be wrong but I thought you could connect to Jandy VSP pumps with the onboard controller via Bluetooth. You have the LCD "JEP" display on the pump? Did your builder talk about automation at all? It would have added like $3k to your costs.
No LCD display on my pump. Looks like I need an add on (IQPUMP01). I would have loved to have automation but we were so far over budget it wasn't a real possibility.
 

pskibo

Member
Jul 12, 2021
19
Wilmington, DE
How do you change the pump speeds?
Sorry, maybe I misunderstood you. I thought you were talking about an LED screen on the actual pump itself. I do have a JEP-R mounted above that use to control the pump. Doesn't appear to have any options for remote control without Aqualink or IQPUMP01 tho.
 
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pskibo

Member
Jul 12, 2021
19
Wilmington, DE
So I let pump run on max speed (3450 rpm)for almost 24 hours (Salt was added around 11:30 am yesterday). Reading on SWG control panel was 3.8 gpl. Tested water using my K-1766 test kit and got 3800 ppm. I know the ideal range is 3000-3200. Do i need to drain some water and dilute to get this down? Or is it ok to let it come down over time with backwashing/rain/splashout? Either way, I set the SWG to 50% and have the pump running on normal schedule - 16 hours @ 1800 rpm. Chlorine was down to 1 ppm when i tested this morning.
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
6,428
Damascus, MD
So I let pump run on max speed (3450 rpm)for almost 24 hours (Salt was added around 11:30 am yesterday). Reading on SWG control panel was 3.8 gpl. Tested water using my K-1766 test kit and got 3800 ppm. I know the ideal range is 3000-3200. Do i need to drain some water and dilute to get this down? Or is it ok to let it come down over time with backwashing/rain/splashout? Either way, I set the SWG to 50% and have the pump running on normal schedule - 16 hours @ 1800 rpm. Chlorine was down to 1 ppm when i tested this morning.

Very good yeah your pool must have had some salt in it and/or is not as large as advertised. You are fine with that level. Do you see little bubbles coming out of your returns? You can also capture a beaker of water direct from the returns and test it. It should be much higher in chlorine than surrounding water. I would set the SWG at 100% for a couple days to break it in and see how much it produces. Do you have CYA in the water yet? You are safe to swim up to the SLAM level in this link - Chlorine / CYA Chart - Trouble Free Pool

Did you test your water for salt before adding some? If you started from 0 salt, your pool is closer to 20k gallons. This number is important to know for future chemical additions. Why do you think it is 29k gallons?
 

pskibo

Member
Jul 12, 2021
19
Wilmington, DE
Very good yeah your pool must have had some salt in it and/or is not as large as advertised. You are fine with that level. Do you see little bubbles coming out of your returns? You can also capture a beaker of water direct from the returns and test it. It should be much higher in chlorine than surrounding water. I would set the SWG at 100% for a couple days to break it in and see how much it produces. Do you have CYA in the water yet? You are safe to swim up to the SLAM level in this link - Chlorine / CYA Chart - Trouble Free Pool

Did you test your water for salt before adding some? If you started from 0 salt, your pool is closer to 20k gallons. This number is important to know for future chemical additions. Why do you think it is 29k gallons?
I did not test for salt prior to adding but the SWG control had a reading of 0.8 (800 ppm) prior to adding any salt to the pool. The pool builder was the one that gave me the estimate of 29,000 gallons so I was just going with that. I have not added any stabilizer since my CYA level was 70 prior to salt addition.
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
6,428
Damascus, MD
I did not test for salt prior to adding but the SWG control had a reading of 0.8 (800 ppm) prior to adding any salt to the pool. The pool builder was the one that gave me the estimate of 29,000 gallons so I was just going with that. I have not added any stabilizer since my CYA level was 70 prior to salt addition.

Then you are golden. Increase your chlorine to proper levels with liquid and let the SWG maintain it. At 24k gallons, you'll probably run at 50% if you bump your pump to 24x7 operation, which I highly recommend. I run mine 24x7 for 5 seasons now no issues ever, I have the same pump and SWG as you. I am at 53% 24x7 to maintain 8 parts FC in my 29k gallon pool.

Based on starting with 800 parts salt, your pool is 24k gallons.
 

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