preventing scaling in the SWCG (pentair IC-40)

crackers8199

Well-known member
Jun 5, 2014
132
Lake Elsinore, CA
is there a good way to do this? i am pretty sure i've read somewhere hear since i started following TFP that if your water is always balanced, you should not have scaling in the cell...is that not true?

my water has been nearly perfect (rarely outside of -0.2 to 0.2 even) over the past two months, since the last time i cleaned the cell at the end of june, yet today i noticed white flakes sitting on the bottom of the pool. i pulled the cell just now and there's some build up on the plates...nothing major, but enough that i thought it prudent to take it off and clean it (which i'm doing right now). am i doing something wrong, or is this normal?
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
33,845
Laughlin, NV
I have never cleaned scale out of my IC40, in six years.
When I see a flake of scale out of the returns, it is because my TA has climbed above 80ppm. CH climbs to over 800 ppm before I exchange and start over. I add acid twice a week from May to October to keep TA in line and thus the pH stays between 7.6 high to 7.2 low.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
33,845
Laughlin, NV
If your CH does not climb fast, adding borates makes a lot of sense as it really helps the pH rise in the SWCG. I am adding a water softener this winter just for my pool and I will then add borates as I will not be exchanging my pool water every 14-16 months.
 

crackers8199

Well-known member
Jun 5, 2014
132
Lake Elsinore, CA
If your CH does not climb fast, adding borates makes a lot of sense as it really helps the pH rise in the SWCG. I am adding a water softener this winter just for my pool and I will then add borates as I will not be exchanging my pool water every 14-16 months.
so then it's likely my high CH (950) is the culprit, even with the water being balanced otherwise? my TA as of last test on saturday was only 60, so that's not the issue...pH this morning was 7.8, so i'm due for acid tomorrow or friday, but that's not insanely high either.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
33,845
Laughlin, NV
Yes. Once you get to that CH - it will be nearly impossible to control scale in the SWCG. It can be done by using borates, low pH, and low TA. But right now, you just need to either exchange your water to fresh or pay for a Reverse Osmosis treatment.
 
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crackers8199

Well-known member
Jun 5, 2014
132
Lake Elsinore, CA
Yes. Once you get to that CH - it will be nearly impossible to control scale in the SWCG. It can be done by using borates, low pH, and low TA. But right now, you just need to either exchange your water to fresh or pay for a Reverse Osmosis treatment.
fair enough, thanks for the advice. i've been holding off on the water exchange until i can get my faux rocks and coping rehab scheduled, since the water will have to be lowered at that point anyway...but it's good to know i'm not particularly doing anything wrong at the moment. that's more what i wanted to make sure of.