New SWG installation, bad pool salt

erikbranson

Active member
Apr 20, 2020
29
Seaford, VA
Hey everyone,

First of all, I have to say thanks to TFP for all your help. We moved in to our new house 3 years ago and I became responsible for the pool in the backyard. The advice here has been invaluable and our pool has remained crystal clear and we have used it TONS. I have been using the liquid chlorine method since then.

Recently, a friend was telling me that they had their pool removed and filled in. He offered me any of his old equipment that I might want. I made a visit and noticed that he had an Intellichlor IC40 SWG. He gave it to me and so recently I set about installing it. I tested it out on the bench to make sure it would power on, and then went about the project of cutting into my plumbing and installing this thing. Amazingly, the install went off without a hitch. After getting the plumbing all setup, all that was left to do was dump a bunch of salt in.

Unfortunately, the pool salt that I bought was Clorox brand pool salt. I read both of the articles in pool school about SWGs and it didn't mention anything about Clorox or "pool salt" being bad..just that it usually cost a bit more. After adding the salt, my pool took a cloudy yellowish/greenish color. Of course, I came here an searched and found all of the Clorox pool salt horror stories.

Anyhow, I added poly fil to the skimmer and ran the pump for 2 days with lots of brushing and the pool cleared up quite a bit. However, its still slightly cloudy. Kids with goggles mention the "murkiness". Now, this is something we could live with, but it is a huge bummer after having crystal clear water for so long. I ran the pump another 2 days with poly fil and it is still pulling some yellow from the water. I have added a picture of the poly fil after the 4th night of filtering. Is there anything else I can do? I don't see any obvious stains on the liner, although the edges do seem a bit yellowed...maybe. Also, I ran a OCLT and only lost .5 so I don't think I have any algae. Do I just keep filtering and hope for the best?

Thanks for all your help!
 

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duraleigh

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The full set of test results will help us.

That said, it sounds like you have iron in your pool water. whether from the salt or another source (do you fill from a well?) I am not sure.

I would continue the polyfill. It is helping your filter catch the iron particles and eventually will clear your pool.
 

erikbranson

Active member
Apr 20, 2020
29
Seaford, VA
Thanks for the help, just did another full test:
FC: 6
CC: 0
pH: 7.7
TA: 70
CH: 350
CYA: 60 (I've been working on bringing this up slowly to 70 with the new SWG)
SALT: 3500

I am not on well water, and I have not had any trouble with the water off of the hose in previous years...including a partial drain refill my first year with a lot of help from mknauss.

Honestly, this morning I can see the bottom of the deep end fairly clearly, but I know if I brush I'll kick up more dust. I know its not the end of the world and it could be worse, just sucks to have bad product throw a wrench in everything.

I have attached one more picture of the ridge where the pool goes from shallow to deep. The color looks darker in this picture, but things seem to settle here. If I brush, this area will brush off and create a small cloud of yellowish dust. It seems like all my numbers are stable, so I'm leaning towards just running the pump with poly fil for a while longer and then just dealing with it.
 

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Katodude

Silver Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
2,210
West Palm Beach/Florida
Pool Size
15000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Hayward Aqua Rite (T-15)
Keep using the Polyfill. Your pool will clear up eventually, you may end up with some iron staining from the Clorox salt. You can alway do an AA treatment when the water gets really cold to clear that up.
 
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SoDel

Well-known member
May 27, 2022
373
Coastal Sussex Delaware
Pool Size
15000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Hayward Turbo Cell (T-CELL-5)
Iron (and other contaminates) in salt is among the things I fear. I’ve seen some pretty sad looking “pool salt” but would never suspect a brand name. I know you must be disappointed after spending the $ on a brand name and getting that result. Hopefully it will clear (after a lot of your work).
 
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erikbranson

Active member
Apr 20, 2020
29
Seaford, VA
Hey everyone,

Thanks again for all your help and sorry to be a pain!

Its been another 2 days of brushing and filtering and it doesn't seem to be getting much better...maybe worse? I know you all have seen stuff like this before, but I am really freaking out...LOL I wish I had just stuck to liquid chlorine at this point...even with the high prices and having to hunt all over town to find it.

We had a lot of rain last night. I ran the pump and the SWG (20%) all night. This morning, the FC is 5.5 and ph is 7.7. First thing this morning, from inside the house, I can see a big deposit of funk in the shallow end...picture attached (The picture does not do it justice. Also, the deep end is obviously more murky/greenish yellowish). I changed out the polyfil and brushed. The "stain" brushed out to a fairly large cloud of dust. I proceeded to brush the rest of the pool which kicked up a lot of dust and made it murky again. Do you all really think if I keep filtering it will eventually get this stuff? Fortunately, it does not appear to have stained the liner noticeably yet...it always seems to brush away.

It seems like it may be worse now. Could that be that the iron is just "precipitating" more now? Could it be the salt interacting with something else in my system? I got my SWG second hand, but I know the original owner. He said he used it for 1 season and then it set unused for 1 season. Before I installed it, I acid washed it per the directions. Is it possible that the SWG is introducing this stuff? I am assuming it is just all from the Clorox pool salt as that seems the most likely culprit and is something that many others have seen here...just seems odd that it is not getting any better.

Not sure what to do next....im struggling!

Thanks for any help or advice.
 

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SoDel

Well-known member
May 27, 2022
373
Coastal Sussex Delaware
Pool Size
15000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Hayward Turbo Cell (T-CELL-5)
I wish I could help with your present dilemma, but I don’t know enough about this particular issue to chime in. FWIW, looking beyond WHEN you get this resolved (and you will), I’m thinking any salt should be ”jar tested” before adding any to pool. A straw man proposed test: saturate a large jar or deep graduated cylinder of warm water with the subject salt, add chlorine, observe very carefully to see what it does, any tinges, etc.

[edit — an idea came to me, given the way it seems to settle in small areas, can you vacuum to waste or do you have a small utility pump to just directly suck up a lot of it in one go and remove from the water?]
 
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erikbranson

Active member
Apr 20, 2020
29
Seaford, VA
SoDel - Vacuum to waste is a good idea...especially since I have so much water from rain right now. I have already brushed this morning, but if it settles again, I will try!

duraleigh - Believe it or not, I was actually hoping it was algae because I know (from TFP) how to solve that problem! I did the night before my first post ( 3 nights ago?) and only lost .5 ppm. I will try the test again tonight.

I appreciate your help!!
 
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erikbranson

Active member
Apr 20, 2020
29
Seaford, VA
Is it possible to have algae without chlorine loss? Maybe its just getting started? Seems odd that I would have my first algae problem right after installing the SWG and dumping salt in.

I apologize in advance and I am not questioning your advice...I know you have much more experience than I do. I just want to double check before I buy a lot of chlorine and start the SLAM.
 

erikbranson

Active member
Apr 20, 2020
29
Seaford, VA
Welp, I failed the OCLT! Lost 2.5 FC overnight. Looks like you were right on point duraleigh! Algae sucks, but at least I have a path forward now. I am going to procure some liquid chlorine today and then its slammer time.

I don't know if this happened at the same time as the pool salt coincidentally or not, but its neither here nor there. My hope is that the SLAM process will get me back to a clean clear TFP pool.

Thanks again for helping me through this...I will keep ya'll posted.
 
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duraleigh

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Nice work, Eric. Your on track to nip it in the bud.

If you see any visible algae (even the tiniest bit) brush it up into the pool water so the SLAM level chlorine can kill it and your flow can get it into the filter. Keep track of the psi on the filter. If the filter psi get 25% above normal,,,,,,backwash

If you have a robot, put him in there and let him go to work picking up any dead algae.
 
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erikbranson

Active member
Apr 20, 2020
29
Seaford, VA
Things are going well...I think. Yesterday, after my initial chlorine add, I needed another gallon after 2 hours. Later that night I added again. Interestingly, I did not lose much overnight, but then lost quite a bit again this morning.

I checked CYA again just to double check and I think I am closer to 70 so I am bumping my target FC to 28.

Still cloudy and a bit green this morning, but I think it looks better.....I'm going to keep at it.
 

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