Re: Poly 60, borax and algea
To answer your question about the borax, ONCE YOU GET YOUR POOL CLEAR AND THE WATER BALANCED then worry about adding borax. You don't need to use optimzer, plain old borax from the laundry aisle of the grocery store will do exactly the same thing! Order a tube of AquaChek borate test strips from the internet if you can't find them locally and see where your borate levels are. I suspect the strip will turn tan which is the highest reading it has. Start diluting your test sample with distilled water and recheck until you see a low borate reading using Carl's "shot glass method" until you get an idea where your borate levels are. If you have been dumping in Optimizer each season without testing the levels I suspect you already have more than enough borates in your pool. Too high a level probably is not a problem so don't worry about it too much. If you find that what I suspect is true then you have proof that the best way to maintain your pool is the methods suggested on this forum. Borates can be helpful and I have them in my own pool but the cannot solve problems from improper water maintenance! It really only takes a few minutes each day to keep your water perfect.
The reason the bioguard store doesn't bother to tell you about the levels is that they want to sell you the Optimzier each season! (Classic example of being "pool stored") Sorry, but too many pool stores just want to sell unnecesary chems to increase their profit margin. We sell Proteam Supreme where I work (Exactly the same as Optimizer) but I do tell my customers that use it it is basically a one time addidtion that might need to be bumped up from time to time because of backwashing, splashout, etc since the only way to reduce the level is to remove water and replace it. My own borate levels have been steady for going on two years now.
For the shot glass method dilute your sample with the same amount of distilled water (a shot glass of each), test and multiply the test reult by 2. If you still test at the highest reading then take 2 parts of distlled water and 1 part of pool water, test, and multiply the result by 3. If still testing at the highest level use 3 parts distilled water and 1 part pool water and multiply the test results by 4. If still high do it again with 4 parts distilled water and 1 part pool water and multiply by 5.
Edit: There is nothing wrong with using Lithium hypochlorite, it is unstablized chlorine just like bleach is and will have minimal impact on your water just like bleach but is it the MOST EXPENSIVE form of chlorine you can buy and, othe than the convenience factor of being a powder, really offers no advantages over bleach.
Last edited by waterbear; 05-09-2007 at 12:42 PM.
11.75'x23.75' kidney 6.5K gal IG fiberglass pool/300 gal acrylic spillover spa combo; Aqualogic automation/SWCG; Pentair Clean and Clear 150 cart filter; 1.5 hp uprated 2 spd Pentair Whisperflo pump; PF:17
Retired pool store and commercial pool maintenance guy.