Struggling maintaining Chlorine levels after adding solar heater

nefloridaswg

Member
Oct 20, 2021
10
ST AUG BEACH, FL
I have a 10k Gallon gunnite pool (Pebbletec). The build was finished in April of this year. It has a Hayward T9 cell (rated for 25k) gallons.
After some newlywed time, i settled at a salt cell generation of 38%. Which constantly kept my Chlorine levels between 2-4ppm. The PH required a cup of acid everyday or so. It's been like that for 6 months or so.

I recently added a solar heater. Since doing so I've struggled maintaining chlorine. I increased the salt cell to 50% and barely can keep 0-1. I need to super chlorinate all day to keep levels.

PH is 7.4
Phosphate 0 ppb
Average temp 80 night-85 day
Alkalinity 100 ppm
Calcium 325 ppm
Stabalizer 70-80 ppm
Salt 3300 PPM

I've tested with multiple kits, Taylor 2005/2006 and even tried strips and let the pool store test. All come back within range, but my chlorine is fleeting.

Salt cell has been cleaned and tested and is producing chlorine. Water is clear, no visible buildup/algea.

Any thoughts?
 

nobody291

Gold Supporter
Jun 5, 2020
64
Camarillo, CA
Pool Size
18000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
CircuPool RJ-60 Plus
You didn't say if you have any automation (you should consider adding your pool details to your signature), but if you do, did the solar heater installer change the schedule on your automation so that the filter pump doesn't run as long as it used to?
 

TexasEd

Well-known member
Sep 11, 2020
54
Cedar Park, TX
Pool Size
18500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Truclear / Ei
Just a shot but
  • Is this solar heater the kind that you pump the water to the panels, raised up and maybe on the roof?
  • Is the SWG before or after the heater in the lines?
If the SWG is not the last thing before the returns then maybe your chlorine is staying in the solar heater?
 

nefloridaswg

Member
Oct 20, 2021
10
ST AUG BEACH, FL
You didn't say if you have any automation (you should consider adding your pool details to your signature), but if you do, did the solar heater installer change the schedule on your automation so that the filter pump doesn't run as long as it used to?
Ahh thank you I'll get my signature updated! I have a hayward omnilogic, the schedule has been 8AM to 5PM at 65% pump speed (Variable). When the heater kicks on, it ramps up to 100% for three minutes.

I do have it set to heater extend, meaning if it's capable of producing heat beyond 5PM it will keep the pump running.
 

nefloridaswg

Member
Oct 20, 2021
10
ST AUG BEACH, FL
Just a shot but
  • Is this solar heater the kind that you pump the water to the panels, raised up and maybe on the roof?
  • Is the SWG before or after the heater in the lines?
If the SWG is not the last thing before the returns then maybe your chlorine is staying in the solar heater?
Thank you!
This is the kind where you pump water to the panels. The flow when the heater is on goes from
Heat ON: PUMP > FILTER > PANELS > SWG > POOL.
Heat Off: PUMP > FILTER> SWG > POOL
 

nefloridaswg

Member
Oct 20, 2021
10
ST AUG BEACH, FL
I would still guess that something has changed with your settings, so I would double check everything. I'm not sure that running the pump 9 hours a day with your SWG at 38% would generate enough chlorine.
Thanks! I double checked everything last night. It's been enough for 6 months, but suddenly doesn't seem to be. It's running at 60% right now and chlorine was good this morning.

I cleaned the filter and the filter tank last night, thought maybe something could be growing in the bottom? Hopefully it works.
 

Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
11,534
NY
So, anytime you suspect anything chemistry wise, Overnight Chlorine Loss Test. Get the FC up to 8-10, bypass the solar and turn off the SWG. If the pool holds FC overnight without the solar then we know it’s solar related. If the pool loses nighttime FC with no sun, then there was an underlying algae issue that’s coincidentally appearing now making you look at the solar and possibly wasting precious time.

If we prove the pool water to be healthy, it buys us all the time in the world to fiddle with everything else. You will keep extra tabs on the FC in the meantime, just in case, and dose manually to never get close to minimum. (y)

But if you fail the Overnight Chlorine Loss Test, it’s SLAM Process time.
 

Danimal92Sport

Well-known member
Jul 5, 2017
145
Southern Indiana
Pool Size
4600
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
Personally, I prefer to see pump speed on the OmniLogic system, rather than percent of max pump speed. The max pump speed can easily be configured to whatever you want in the OmniLogic system - even well below actual max pump speed, which is probably 3450RPM on your pump. So 60% pump speed could mean anything, really. You might check the actual speed, and also take a peek at the flow restriction curves for your solar panels vs the flow chart for the pump - seems there’s a chance that your flow rate dropped enough due to the panels that the SWG flow switch isn’t activated.

To confirm that, can you manually switch the valve to route the water straight to the SWG after the filter? If chlorine levels come back up to where you’d expect, then it could be a flow/restriction issue when the panels are part of the circuit.
 

nefloridaswg

Member
Oct 20, 2021
10
ST AUG BEACH, FL
Personally, I prefer to see pump speed on the OmniLogic system, rather than percent of max pump speed. The max pump speed can easily be configured to whatever you want in the OmniLogic system - even well below actual max pump speed, which is probably 3450RPM on your pump. So 60% pump speed could mean anything, really. You might check the actual speed, and also take a peek at the flow restriction curves for your solar panels vs the flow chart for the pump - seems there’s a chance that your flow rate dropped enough due to the panels that the SWG flow switch isn’t activated.

To confirm that, can you manually switch the valve to route the water straight to the SWG after the filter? If chlorine levels come back up to where you’d expect, then it could be a flow/restriction issue when the panels are part of the circuit.
Thank you!

I checked the speed and it seems that 100% is actually full speed, but I do see the setting you refer to that lets you set a new 100%. I thought it might be something due to flow and the routing of the solar, i disabled the solar all day yesterday and checked it this morning and it was at a 0 :(.

I spoke to hayward and they suggested orienting my Salt Cell so the HUMP was down. It was currently in the HUMP up position. They requested I try this before warrantying the cell itself. I just changed it and will let ya know!
 

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nefloridaswg

Member
Oct 20, 2021
10
ST AUG BEACH, FL
2 gal of bleach in a 10k gal pool and zero chlorine 2 hours later? Could this be a testing issue?
It could be but I think the chances are less likely. I have the taylor kit, and went and bought new reagents for r001 and r002. Just to be sure. I also have a clear pools dropper kit, it's harder to read since it's shades of yellow as the chlorine gets higher. It showed clear water, with no yellow. I also have some test strips, that I know are not reliable but they're usually not too far off, also showed 0.

Anyway. It failed the OCLT. So, I started the slam process a few days ago. I think I'm going to let the FC taper down now, I've been holding it steady at 20PPM per the slam chart Chlorine / CYA Chart

And held it there over the weekend. Pump has been running 24/7. Water looks great. Last night it didn't seem to lose any or at least very little so I might let it come back down starting tomorrow.
 
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Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
11,534
NY
Last night it didn't seem to lose any or at least very little so I might let it come back down starting tomorrow.
Abort mission !!! Pass the OCLT that tests what the eyes can’t see.

Far too many folks quit early and the timer resets immediately for the next Slam in a week or 3. Finish the Slam to completion.

Clear water. (Check)
Pass OCLT. (Getting there)
CCs of .5 or less.
 
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