Schedule vs. liquid chlorine feasibility Hello

WISAZ13

New member
Apr 12, 2017
2
Phoenix, AZ
#1
Hello all,

New to to the forums but have been lurking for a bit and think I have my bearings now. I just had a question on the feasibility of sanitizing with bleach with a schedule where I will be out of town 2-3 days a week (I'm a pilot a obviously travel frequently for work). I just fired the pol guy after noticing algae and some kind of seaweed growing from my skimmer. Bought a test a realized the CYA was way too high for chlorine to really do anything. Drained the pool and am starting from scratch. I'm on the road right now and will post my new test numbers when I get home but so far I added two gallons of stabilizer (CYA was still less than 20 when I left) and of course bought those stupid tablets and chlorbrite (dichlor) from Leslie's which I didn't realize all contained more CYA (this was before I discover TFP).

Anyways, once these chemicals are used up (they all cost $200 so I'm not going to waste them), I'd like to switch to just using bleach for sanitizing. With a schedule where I may not be able to test the water and add bleach for 2-4 days at a time, is this feasible? I've been reading you have to stay on top of FC quite a bit more when using liquid chlorine. Could I just spike the levels right before I left on a trip so they were back down to 3-5 ppm by the time I returned? Or could I just float a puck or two during this time without raising the CYA significantly over the long-haul?

thanks in advance
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
#2
Hello and welcome to TFP! :wave: For owners who are away from home for a few days at a time, the best option is installing a SWG (salt water generator) or liquid chlorine dispenser (i.e. stenner). But that's not to say that manual additions can't still be done. As you noted, perhaps increase the pool to shock level before leaving and let a tab or two float to help keep the FC at a good level. The correct level of FC of course is all based on what your CYA ends-up being then looking at the TFP Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart. That's key. Right now, I'd hold-off and validate your CYA test when your test kit arrives to ensure it's in a good range and not too high (again). :) The tabs/pucks will do that as we know.

You can also refer to the Poolmath calculator, go near the bottom where it lists "Effects of adding chemicals", and see what impact tabs/bags of shock have on your chemistry.

Hope that helps.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
10,488
Bedford, TX
#3
W,

Welcome to TFP... A Great resource for all flyboys who own pools... :snorkle:

There are four ways to chlorinate your pool...

1. Using chlorinated 3" pucks... We do not recommend them, and you have discovered why..
2. Manually add Liquid Chlorine or plain Bleach on a regular basis. Usually daily or ever other day.
3. Use a Stenner pump to automatically add Liquid Chlorine or bleach.
4. Use a Saltwater Chlorine Generator (SWCG) to convert the salt in your pool into chlorine.

I have a saltwater pool and it will be the only kind of pool I will ever own again. Maintenance is just dirt easy...

Thanks for posting,

Jim R.
 

WISAZ13

New member
Apr 12, 2017
2
Phoenix, AZ
#4
Thanks for the quick responses! I will definitely be switching to a SWCG system in about 3-4 years when we are doing a huge backyard/pool overhaul project. How long does floating those pucks take until the CYA reaches a level where I'll have to do a partial drain and refill?
 

tim5055

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 11, 2014
10,094
Franklin, NC
#5
Thanks for the quick responses! I will definitely be switching to a SWCG system in about 3-4 years when we are doing a huge backyard/pool overhaul project. How long does floating those pucks take until the CYA reaches a level where I'll have to do a partial drain and refill?
Pucks are almost 50% CYA, so it can come way too quickly....

Pucks don't go bad, so don't feel the need use them so you don't "waste" the money. CYA naturally degrades a few ppm per month and you will loose it due to splash out, wet bathing suits leaving the pool and back washing your DE filter.

Personally I went with a Stenner Pump to add chlorine. Depending on how handy you are you can possibly get into one of those for a few hundred dollars.

You touched on another option, spiking the chlorine. If we agree that it is safe to swim in a pool with a FC level at or below shock level, then before you go out of town you bring your pool up to shock level. It will generally take a day or two to get back to "normal", so you should be good to go. I wouldn't think about floating pucks unless you were going away for a much longer period of time.

So, in order of preference of how I (remember what opinions are like) think you should do it-

- Bite the bullet and install a salt system now (it will still work after you do the big project in a year or two).

- Install a Stenner Pump

- Do the spike chlorine trick

- Float pucks

Or, the option not talked about - - - - It only takes a few weeks of testign and adding liquid to figure out your pools "normal" consumption of chlorine for a day. You say "we", so I assume there is a "significant other (SO)" in the house. Once you figure your "normal" daily consumption just have your SO add that much each morning. No testing, no muss, no fuss. Just pour a little chlorine in the water and when you get home test and adjust to where it really should be.
 

Analogbytes

Bronze Supporter
Dec 22, 2016
291
Arlington, Texas
#6
When you use dichlor, adding 10 ppm FC adds 9ppm CYA. So, if you consume 3 FC per day during the summer, you will be adding 2.7ppm CYA per day. 10 days of this kinda of maintenance adds 27ppm CYA.
 

tim5055

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 11, 2014
10,094
Franklin, NC
#7
When you use dichlor, adding 10 ppm FC adds 9ppm CYA. So, if you consume 3 FC per day during the summer, you will be adding 2.7ppm CYA per day. 10 days of this kinda of maintenance adds 27ppm CYA.
This is a great example of how fast CYA can rise!!

I could have done the math had I not already opened my welcome home today bottle of wine.....
 

Analogbytes

Bronze Supporter
Dec 22, 2016
291
Arlington, Texas
#8
doesn't account for splash out or break down, but paints a pretty good picture when everyone agrees those 2 combined accounts for, say, less than 10 ppm per month of CYA loss? (I think I am being VERY conservative, more likely 5ppm per month loss or less)
 

Sfpat

Silver Supporter
Jul 29, 2016
113
tulsa
#10
Consider the $200 as a sunk cost and move onto liquid. I have a full 25 lb bucket of shock and an almost full 50 lb bucket of pucks that will sit in my garage for a long, long time (might use the occasional puck when I travel, which isn't often these days). Been using liquid for almost a year and my pool has never been better.