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  1. yes yes. the dose makes the poison. but come on. bleach is what 6%? make a 6% solution of table salt. put each in your eye. i'm just saying these pool sanitizers are a lot more toxic then table salt. and i think that's just common knowlwged. i didn't say lets use table salt to sanitize the pool. ever notice how life can thrive around sodium chloride? oceans and stuff. not so many chlorine environments. and that's the point right? it kills stuff. but don't tell me they are equally biocompatible. that's silly. i did look up the LD50s and they seem to be close to each other. there has to be something more to this storey. does anyone really think they could di-chlor thier food all week and not get very ill? i understand we all want to think that out spas are as harmless as saline. but come on. we are talking about salt right? not "a salt". i mean the stuff on your table. the stuff that is not used to sanitize in general...unless maybe for salting meats.... i know the body is not a test tube. but that doen't mean you can't brominate thyroid hormone. it means things are lot more complex then they are in a lab. i would trust a guy with clinical expereince that is testing people more then a chemist on this one. and i don't think saline is any better electrical conductor then water full of....well any ions. right? so you'll get fried either way unless you have some crazy distilled water. anyway you know that's a lot of work when there are many authors and many post and you don't want to edit down a book. well, i think i'm about done on this one. it's kinda beat into the ground. i don't think much of my thinking has changed about chlorine. just some food for thought. even experts dissagree on some pretty major stuff. flouride prevents tooth decay VS no it doesn't and it's poison. red meat causes heart disease VS there is no relationship between red meat and heat disease. then there is the influence of industry...you know, like GMO food is perfectly safe? like almagam fillings with 50% mercury are totally safe. it's difficult to find the truth i think. the best you can do is read up on things, keep an open mind, use common sense, pay careful attention to the motivations of your sources... and insulting someone does not make your point any more valid.
  2. good lord. what a sh*tstorm. i can't respond to everything. but let me just try a few. i still challenge chemgeek to ingesting some chlorine and i'll do the sodium chloride and we'll see who gets sick. "The LD50 for chlorine is actually higher than that of salt meaning it takes less common table salt to kill you from ingestion than it does chlorine." chlorine is poison. gas or no gas. you know what i'm getting at. i did take some chem in HS and then later in college. i was ok at it. but to be honest i've forgotton just about everything. it doen't mean i'm wrong though. the halide displacement in the human body is from research by David Brownstein, MD. he really likes iodine. now... you don't have to believe him. the science on iodine and human health is all over the place from what i've read. "One last comment: You're using Dichlor/Baking Soda (no bleach) - Isn't that a bit of chasing your tail?" i know the argument you are putting forward. but it's not my experience. perhaps it's because the tub is so low use and i don't add tons of di-chlor. or maybe the 3 month drainings. or maybe something else. i have really never smelled combined chlor or needed to add tons of di-chlor to get decent free chlor readings. as far as the temp goes. the big factor in kids overheating is their activity imo. i sit still in the tub. my daughter uses it like a pool and constantly moves. imagine swimming in 104 degree water. you'd overheat very very fast. but there are other reasons to keep it low imo. shouldn't bacteria grow less? lower heating bills. you can soak longer without overheating. blah blah. ozone. yes i know. known lung irritant. what can i say... the tub came with the house. as far as i can tell there is no way to turn it off. they have a lifespan right? wonder if this is at it's end. it seems there is an idea here that the chorine added to water is non-toxic... that combined chlor causes irritation. i'm sure it does. but chlorine is no saint. see the warning on the bleach bottle? ever get a drop of bleach in your eye? ok, now try that with saline. big difference i bet. how can anyone talk about sodium chloride and any of these sanitizers as if they are similar? "Ahem, a salt pool IS a chlorne pool" isn't a salt pool...as in the ocean...dissolved sodium chloride? that's very different stuff. it's bonds aren't broken by dissolving in water right? now maybe they start off with salt to make chlorine compounds...makes sense since table salt has chlorine bound in it. but they are very different. i don't think you need to understand the industrial process (electrolysis) for making chlorine to understand it's nothing like table salt. all i wanted to add here was my personal experience with various methods over the last years. what i outlined above works well for me. waterbear, i didn't mean to kick your dog. i think the bleach method is yours yes? i just never had any luck with it. is it possible that the water out of my pipe has something in it that would effect your method? i imagine water varies like crazy over the nation. and i didn't mean to attack anyones business. i get just about everything from roberts hot tubs. soon will be getting a cover. i do appreciate what the community has to offer here. i think some people are making a lot of assumtions about what i know and where i get my information. generally assuming i'm a bigger idiot then i am. enjoy the show.
  3. yes, i am talking about di-chlor then bleach. i don't think it's a good system. "The LD50 for chlorine is actually higher than that of salt meaning it takes less common table salt to kill you from ingestion than it does chlorine." come on. use your common sense. why don't you eat 1/2 tsp chlorine (not chloride) and i'll eat 1/2 tsp of table salt and we'll see what happens. one person will get very sick. the other will just be getting almost the daily american intake of salt. whatever LD50 50 is i wouldn't trust it if that's thier rec. both chlorine and bromine cause allergic reactions in people. that should tell you something. ever spend serious time in salt water and a pool? the pool chlorine will irritate your eyes for a long long time. salt water will sting but it does not have the long lasting effects that chlorinated water has. sodium chloride is everywhere in our bodies. chlorine is not. just check out the wiki on chloride and chlorine. silly rabbit. tricks are for kids.
  4. I've had my spa for 4 years now. i got a lot of useful info here. now i'd like to hopefully add some of the wisdom. here is my tub situation. it's a low use family spa. i keep it at 100 F so as not to cook my child. also you can soak longer and more comfortabley at 100. it has an ozonator. i have tried many things over the last few years. the bleach method. using MPS. using PH stablizers like gentle spa. my goal was to find a simple no-nonsense solution. i've come back to the basics. 1) i fill my spa every 3 months. water is cheap (for now) so just refill. you don't want to stew in some toxic cocktail. 2) add as little as possible. i want to whiddle things down to the essentials. there was a time when i was attracted to liquid bleach. it's cheap and dispurses fast. but it's also very alkaline. i had a lot more balancing issues with it. and i suspect my cover and some other items met and early demise because of. ok, so i fill my spa. then test ph. it's way alkaline. but if you give that a day or so it comes down. don't ask me why but where i am i take the fresh fill readings with a grain of salt. then i use 2 things: baking soda and di-chlor. baking soda raises total alkalinity. di-chlor is acidic around 7. so there you have your balancing agents. with just these 2 agents i find my sanitizer (di-chlor) lasts longer and my ph is more stable. i add enough di-chlor to get to around 3 ppm after every use. i check in over the week to make sure levels do not fall to 0. although they certainly have in the past. one test i have found usefull is what i call the "film swipe". swipe the shell and see if you feel a slippery coating. if you do you are in trouble. i'm a big fan of using your senses. ditto for smelling that "chlorine smell" which indicates combined chlorine. not good. i don't shock every week. maybe every 10 days. but i do it with di-chlor at around 10 ppm. you can test this with a test kit (not strips they aren't very accurate) or if you have a good nose it will tell you. i find MPS more hassle then it's worth. it also adds to the wonderful chem-soup. i notice a smell with MPS as well. that's it. di-chlor and baking soda. simple, effective. if you have wild orgies and such you may need dupont on retainer but for my usage this system works fine. nice tub. no rashes. low effort. up the road i'm looking for a better way to sanitize. chlorine is a great way to sanitize but it's also toxic. and it displaces iodine, something you need to live. you have a child and suddenly get very concerned about poisons.
  5. little by little some large sand/small pebbles are accumulating in my spa. i tried sucking them up with my pump when i drain it. that doesn't really work. it's nearly impossible to grab them with my fingers. there must be a simple device that can collect them. any ideas? thx
  6. thx you guys. armed with new insite we'll see how it goes.
  7. holy crap. i just had a breakthrough in group. thx. serious. that's the missing piece for me.
  8. the spa has just been filled. basically first day. there is no chlor in there yet. but there will be today. i used safeway bleach before. always had a high ph.. i can try clorox this time. i really thought the CH could be anywhere in that big range. 150-300. so i went up from 40 to 160. slight overshoot, was trying for 150. so next time. keep CH lower, and test ph whilst increasing TA? that's where i get confused. to me it read like get CH in right range, test TA..then adjust it to around 80, then fine tune it. no mention of testing of ph at that point. using the pool calc a TA of 80 with my other levels should give me like 7.5 ph and a nice csi. as things stand now should i add acid to bring ph down? once in a good place add gentle spa? it seems impossible to hit the ph ideal range and the TA ideal range. thx again.
  9. i'm bit confused. had this same issue/question last time. using nitro's method (thx!). i drained refilled, heated to 100F, brought calcium up to 160ppm, brought TA up to 80ppm. but my ph is 8. my csi (pool calc) is 0.44. and i think chlorine is less effective at this ph. i'm using a taylor 2006 (kit) and have done 2 tests confirming original data. where did i go wrong? thx
  10. i should have gotten a test kit to begin with. when it did show up i did some side my sides with 2 common test strips. these were all done within 20 minutes of each other. FC CC TA pH CH poolmaster 5 3 180 8.4 450 aquachek 3 3 180 7.8 250 taylor 3.4 1.8 100 7.9 my question is about testing pH with the taylor. that test begins with dissolving 2 scoops of crystals in the sample. this takes a long time. for me something like 5 minutes and i have to keep swirling. sometimes i think its dissolved and there are a few crystals at the bottom. so when i thought i reached an endpoint and recorded the result 30 seconds later it turned pink again. is there a kit with less swirling and waiting and not knowing if things are dissloved? and the scoop method seems so inaccurate. i'm guessing its not super critical. also..lately i've been getting high CC readings which see to be following my FC readings. But i don't have high levels of FC and i haven't used MPS for maybe 2 weeks. any ideas?
  11. thanks you guys. i think my big error was adjusting my TA after filling to the ideal (?) range of 120. after this the pH was always high. next time i'll adjust TA to get ph in the right range...then monitor to see how stable it is. also, i'm going to try this di-chlor primer method...getting cya to 35ppm. i'll read it again next time i refill. i'm excited because of the extended pH range this method gives chlorine.
  12. ah the confusion. i was reading in the taylor booklet that came with the 2006 that MPS doesn't do much for CC. i log everything, but i don't have data to support either position yet. all i can say is that MPS seemed to cause my CC and FC to test falsely high for about 2 days. so maybe start off with dichlor and then switch to bleach? my cya is 30 at the moment. i'm in this experimental mode...when we got the house there were bromine tabs. i tried those for a few months but my gut told me there was a better way. borates. thats an area i haven't looked at yet. a ph of 7.6-7.8 is on the high side for chlorine effectiveness, yes? much thanks, i will check it out.
  13. relative noob here. bought a house 8 months ago with a spa. never wanted a spa, never thought i'd be into maintaining one. now i'm slightly obsessive. not that i add chemicals left and right. but i do log all my measurements. here is where i am refilled: 4/13/09 ph: 7.9 total alk: 90 dichlor: i dose after uses (5 days a week) 2 tsp gets me over 2ppm. combined chlor: i have had some strange results for this lately. i think because i shocked with potassium peroxymonosulfate. it tested very high for a while, but no smell. now it tests less then .2 ppm. usage: me and my wife about 5 days a week. cyanuric acid: 30 hardness: 250 i'm lookign for a clear explanation of ph and total alk. i have read many online. none very clear. i took some chem in college so i know about ph. and total alk is a buffer for ph yes? here is whats confusing. its hard for me to hit the right ph and total alk. (i'm using a taylor 2006) after reading about ph and alk i had to figure out a model/analogy that made sense to me. here it is. ph balance is like a teeter tauter. base on one side alk on the other. pure water is neutral. kinda like a teeter tauter with no one on it. although it is ph balanced it doesn't take much to unbalance it. like if one kid jumps on an empty teeter tauter. boom! them hit the ground. so it sounds like total alk is like loading up the teeter taunter with kids. a few on one side, a few on the other. its still balanced, but if a new kid jumps on the acid side the thing doesn't abruptly hit the ground. imagine a teeter taunter with 100 kids on each side. now the introduction of a new kid to one side does nearly nothing. alplied to my spa. its seems i have to introduce bicarb to the get the alk right...then my ph will be high (as it has been) then i need to ad dry acid...to balance ph...then check total alk again...then ph.... this seems a bit crazy to me. what i thought i could do was adjust the total alk and the ph would be correct. i'm trying to simplify my care as much as possible with accurate test kits, a firm understanding of principles, and only warrented addition of chemicals. so, to recap. where is the good information on the relationship of ph to total alk? thanks
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