SWG with hard water? Austin Tx area

zach5150

Well-known member
May 22, 2013
70
0
Austin, TX
#1
We are very close to starting the build of our IGP. It'll be an approx 15000 gallon gunite pool. We thought we were going to go w/ SWG but are considering going w/ Chlorine (or BBB) now because we may go w/ Travertine coping and deck. Also, I was talking to one of the local pool builder suppliers/wholesaler and he told me that SWG combined w/ our local hard water isn't a good recipe. I know a lot of people in the Austin area have salt and seem to be happy, but I thought I'd get some opinions here. Anybody have any thoughts on this? Our 'hardness' is around 180ppm according to the city water supply report. I haven't ran a test at my house yet.
 

chem geek

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Expert
Mar 28, 2007
12,082
2
San Rafael, CA USA
#2
That hardness level is not a problem, though with evaporation and refill your CH will rise unless you have significant water dilution. You just need to keep the TA lower and watch the pH as the CH climbs over time. Also, the use of 50 ppm Borates cuts the amount of pH rise in the SWG about in half so helps to prevent scaling there which is the concern of your builder/supplier.
 

UN1017

Well-known member
May 12, 2012
288
0
Sacramento, CA
#3
CH levels alone are not an issue with using an SWG. It's the saltwater that could damage natural stone products if not sealed.

As far as hardness goes, 180 is nothing. You should test your fill water though.... just to be sure.
 

chiefwej

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 12, 2011
3,219
0
Tucson
#4
I just did a full drain and refill because my CH was over 1,000. Now with my new fill, I'm staring out with CH 250. So 180 is nothing to be concerned about.

However the use of stone with SWG can be a real problem. My PB's recommendation was "stone or salt, take your pick, but don't use both". I chose salt, and there is no stone anywhere near my pool. In Texas they use a lot of stone because its readily available and cheap. But it's also soft and is easily damaged by salt.
 

zach5150

Well-known member
May 22, 2013
70
0
Austin, TX
#5
Thanks everyone. We know about the stone/salt incompatibility. If we go with salt we are doing everything with pavers. If we end up going to travertine, we'll go with a standard chlorine setup. I was just curious if the calcium/hardness in tbe water was a big enough deal that it would help sway tbe decision.

Sent from my SAMSUNG Galaxy S3 using Tapatalk 2
 

chiefwej

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 12, 2011
3,219
0
Tucson
#6
Hard water just means you have to carefully manage your water chemistry to prevent scale. That is true regardless of your chosen chlorination method. SWG's do cause some pH rise, but lowering the TA and borates can help with that. You just need to study up in Pool School and learn to manage the CSI. If all that sounds confusing spend some time reading the info in Pool School until its all clear.
 

zach5150

Well-known member
May 22, 2013
70
0
Austin, TX
#7
chiefwej said:
Hard water just means you have to carefully manage your water chemistry to prevent scale. That is true regardless of your chosen chlorination method. SWG's do cause some pH rise, but lowering the TA and borates can help with that. You just need to study up in Pool School and learn to manage the CSI. If all that sounds confusing spend some time reading the info in Pool School until its all clear.
Thank you! I'm learning....slowly but steadily. :)

Thanks for all the great feedback everyone!