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Correctly measuring bromine


Brandon_
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Ok, let me start by saying I have read a lot of posts on here and this site has helped tremendously.

I have had a pool for years and years and I can take care of the pool water no problem.  I just bought an inflatable hot tub at the end of May so about a month ago.  I am not sure but I think I may have some biofilm in there already.  I have maintained my chemicals correctly I thought.  The strips that came with the hot tub measured everything right down the middle.  For my pool I use the liquid drops (red & yellow).  I decided to check the spa with that the other day just out of curiousity and my ph showed just a little high and my bromine didn't show up at all but it does on the strips.  My yellow chemical is from last year, but shows up ok for the pool so I figured it was ok for the spa.  Anyway I have some ahh-some cleaner coming in the mail today to give the spa a good cleaning and I guess drain it and refill it and try again.  

I have kept my filters changed regularly, ususlly every few days I soak them and then use the pressure washer to clean them off.  The biofilm I see looks kind of like a sand in the middle of the pool that keeps showing up.  Also use the floater that came with the hot tub for the bromine, holds 1 tablet but seemed ok on the strips.  ph and alkalinity and harness all seem ok on the strips too, it is just the liquid test that concerned me.  

If I forgot to mention anything let me know, I am still new to dealing with hot water and not cold water.  

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My 7-foot 1988 CalSpa holds like 300-350 gallons.  I use a floater and 1" bromine tablets, my floater holds like 7 tablets.  I keep pH in the range. Once every week or two I use some monopersulfate shock.

I don't use any other chemicals except use a leak sealer product like every two years, as I have a yet-undiscovered leak not in the equipment section.

DSC08181.JPG

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12 hours ago, RDspaguy said:

Fwiw, waterbear is out of town right now. I know @Cusser and @dlleno are bromine users. Perhaps one of them can jump in here.

its not clear to me what the question is, so apologies for that.  For bromine testing, I highly recommend and use the Taylor K2106 kit.  you put in the powder (actual amount is not critical) and then you add the reagent, drop wise (count the drops).  its very effective an accurate.  this has served me well over the  years, better than the color-matching test blocks.  I've never trusted the strips at all.

As for the spa -- again pardon me if I didn't get the question right -- if the gunk is hard even under water then its more likely to be calcium scale.  If it is naturally soft under water but hardens when dry then its more likely biofilm or a combination of biofilm and other non-oxidized residue/gunk.

the ahh-some purge is a great way to level set.  in a situation where there is a problem to correct, make sure to perform at least TWO purges -- or in tough situations it can sometimes take more than two purges to obtain a squeaky clean spa.  

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Ok sorry about the confusion my head never stops… it’s my first time ever messing with a hot tub chemically.  I had high ph and alkalinity when I checked with the strips that came with the hot tub.  I bought ph down the hot tub place told me that would take both down.  It did.  I check about every other day with the strips and everything looks perfect!  Just for shi*s and giggles I checked with the yellow and red drops I use for the pool and the ph was a little high but still normal but the yellow didn’t show up at all.  The strips still show good.  Is my bromine not correct and is that why I am getting the biofilm?  I haven’t purged it yet but am going to this weekend.  

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Well, you are testing for bromine with a chlorine test kit. Unless it shows the bromine ranges on your test vial as well, your reading is off by half. 

Test strips, as I always say, are exremely reliable until you open the package. Then they are exposed to humidity, wet fingers, drips, etc., before being seal up and left in a hot location. The second time you open the bottle, you are using a used test strip. 

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