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UV Sanitation + Bromine Questions in above ground 11x22 therapy pool (indoor)


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Hello. We are installing a Really EZ insulated Thermapool in our garage (insulated and heated)--We have had their pools before and LOVE THEM!)

The pool temp will be routinely kept around 90 degrees F.

We have purchased a UV filter to reduce the amount of chemicals in the water, and have opted for Bromine vs. Chlorine for a few reasons--it was recommended, chlorine shortages and price gouging, as well as the fact that the pool will be kept at higher temps. (While I know Bromine is a derivative of Chlorine it was easier to find in our area so that too was part of our reasoning.)

I recently saw a post that bromine degradation is much higher with a UV filter than is chlorine--I thought they both (chlorine and bromine) degraded, and that was part of the point of the UV - to reduce chemical and smells as well as gasses released (Chloramines etc.) while still keeping the water clear?

I have also read Brominated water is not as clear... I don't love the idea though that water may not be as clear with Bromine, and I have also read that the UV filter needs clearer water to work properly? But the UV people actually suggested the bromine (to a level of .3-.5 ppm). So, I'm a but confused.

I feel like I'm working on a puzzle with missing pieces. Is anyone out there using a UV sanitizer with Bromine, and would you be willing to share your experience and results? Can brominated water stay clear? Any tips, tricks thoughts or ideas you can share are greatly appreciated! Thank you! 

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On 5/5/2021 at 2:30 PM, CCnDoc said:

(While I know Bromine is a derivative of Chlorine

Both are halogens but Bromine is NOT a derivative of Chlorine any more than Iodine or Fluorine are derivatives of chlorine .

 

On 5/5/2021 at 2:30 PM, CCnDoc said:

recently saw a post that bromine degradation is much higher with a UV filter than is chlorine--I thought they both (chlorine and bromine) degraded, and that was part of the point of the UV - to reduce chemical and smells as well as gasses released (Chloramines etc.) while still keeping the water clear?

Bromine cannot be stabilized against degradation by UV, chlorine can. Certain UVC wavelengths can help reduce persistent chloramines in INDOOR pools and spas. (not a problem with outdoor ones that are exposed to sunlight). UV is NOT a residual sanitizer, however, so it will not really allow for lower sanitizer levels.  Also, unlike chloramines, bromamines ARE effective sanitizers, which is why only Total bromine is measured when using bromine (unlike chlorine where testing is done for free chlorine and combined chlorine and when combined chlorine is above .5 ppm or 1 ppm for spas and some indoor installations of pools it indicates that shocking is required). UVC has a real place in a chlorine pool or spa, particularly an indoor one but it's merits for bromine are, to me, questionable.

 

On 5/5/2021 at 2:30 PM, CCnDoc said:

Bromine vs. Chlorine for a few reasons--it was recommended, chlorine shortages and price gouging, as well as the fact that the pool will be kept at higher temp

re: chlorine shortage--bad news, just about all bromine tabs and one step bromine granules are mostly chlorine. Good news, They don't use the type of chlorine (trichor) in short supply. Two step bromine normally uses chlorine to oxidize the sodium bromide (bromide bank) into hypobromous acid (although MPS can be used but it has it's own set of problems). The chlorine shortage is trichlor. Other forms of chlorine such as sodium hypochorite (pool chlorine and laundry bleach) are not affected. The shortage is because of a fire at a Biolab plant , the major manufacturing facility of trichlor tablets, one of the two stabilized chlorine sources (the other is dichlor). Unstabilized chlorine sources are still being manufactured and are a better choice for swim spas to avoid overstabilization.

On 5/5/2021 at 2:30 PM, CCnDoc said:

have also read Brominated water is not as clear.

News to me! Where did you read this?

On 5/5/2021 at 2:30 PM, CCnDoc said:

But the UV people actually suggested the bromine (to a level of .3-.5 ppm)

Are you sure you don't mean 3-5 ppm? .5 ppm bromine is NOT enough to sanitize the water. UV is NOT a residual sanitizer and only sanitizes the small amount of water in contact with the bulb. There needs to be a FAST acting residual sanitizer (chlorine, bromine, or biguanide/peroxide) to handle the bather load.

Fun facts: EVERY person that enters the water involuntarily urinates about 5─10 mL in the water and involuntarily releases about 10─25 mg of fecal matter (Courtesy of Taylor Technologies). They also sweat and sweat and urine are almost chemically identical. The water to bather ratio in a tub (most are under 500 gallons) or even a swim spa (normally in the range of 1500, to 2500 gallons) is extremely small when compared to a pool (average size of most residential pool is 15,000 to 20,000 gallons)  so a fact acting residual sanitizer is a must!

The most important thing you need to consider for an indoor installation, whether you go with chlorine or bromine, is a GOOD AIR HANDLER to remove any volatile oxidation byproducts from the air in the room. IMHO, your money is better spent on that than on UV. Also, since this installation will not be exposed to sunlight (and if you don't install the UV) then bromine is probably a better choice of sanitizer than chlorine. If you do go with the UV then bromine is not the best choice since you will be destroying the bromine sanitizer in your water and possibly creating high levels of bromate, particularly when using a non chlorine oxidizer like MPS or ozone, which is often created by some UV units.  Bromate formation is not a good thing.

 

 

 

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