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Thread: Does Alkalinity Cause pH To Increase Faster?

  1. #11
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    Default Re: Does Alkalinity Cause pH To Increase Faster?

    My Alkalinity is holding fairly steady at 50ppm. I have been taking notes about how adding bleach initially affects the pH. My pool is about 19,000 gallons. Adding one 3/4 gallon jug of 6% bleach adds about 2.4 ppm chlorine. I ran each test adding bleach after sunset and allowing to mix with the pool pump on for about 2 hours. I ran the tests several times with a starting pH range from 7.4 - 7.8.

    In a nut shell, adding one jug of bleach to my pool at 50ppm Alk causes an initial pH increase of .2 or slightly less. I ran a few tests adding 2 jugs which would add 4.8 ppm chlorine to my pool. Adding 2 jugs resulted in an initial pH increase of .4 or slightly less. I say slightly less because some times the color did not look like it was fully developed to the mark on my Taylor comparitor. After 24 hours, my pH was back down to where it started before I added the bleach.

    My in pool results are comparable to what I got in my jug tests. So I am convinced that, at least for my pool water, that running low alkalinity is the way to go. I am having to adjust my pH half as often as when I was running alkalinity around 100 and it takes about half as much acid to bring the pH down. So I am using less chemicals and from what I can tell I am getting better results.

    If anyone can think of a reason to be concerned, please let me know. Otherwise I plan to continue to run low alkalinity.

    Thanks,
    Jim
    Last edited by jereece; 08-20-2006 at 09:28 PM.

  2. #12
    chem geek is offline PF Supporter Whibble Konker chem geek 4 stars chem geek 4 stars chem geek 4 stars chem geek 4 stars
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    Default Re: Does Alkalinity Cause pH To Increase Faster?

    Jim,

    I don't think there is any problem with you running at the lower alkalinity of 50. The main reason to have higher TA would be to prevent pH swings, but you are seeing less of that (due to less CO2 outgassing) so no problem there. You are technically in a more corrosive pool water balance state which normally means either increasing CH or pH to adjust for that, but I think you are fine so long as you don't plan on running at a low pH (much less than 7.4). This only applies to a plaster/gunite pool situation. If you are concerned, you can post a full set of numbers and I can be more specific.

    Richard

  3. #13
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    Default Re: Does Alkalinity Cause pH To Increase Faster?

    Thanks Richard. I guess corrosion could be a concern. I have an AG pool. I don't use a heater, but I suppose the pool walls and pump shaft are possible corrosion concerns? Below are my current numbers,

    pH: 7.4
    FC: 5
    TC: 5
    CYA: 30
    Alk: 50
    CH: 10

    As noted, I have very soft water, so yes CH is only about 10 ppm. Next season I plan to replace my pool liner, so I will be draining & refilling. At that time, I may use Calcium Hypochlorite for a while to get the CH up some.

    Also, how would adding salt affect this? Next year I may add salt after reading some dicussions on the board. Would adding salt just put me in a more corrosive environment? If I continue to run at low Alkalinity, is there anything I should do to minimize corrosion?

    Thanks again for your insight and suggestions.

    Jim

  4. #14
    chem geek is offline PF Supporter Whibble Konker chem geek 4 stars chem geek 4 stars chem geek 4 stars chem geek 4 stars
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    Default Re: Does Alkalinity Cause pH To Increase Faster?

    You are fine so long as you don't have any exposed grout in tile or anything like that -- it sounds like there isn't any and of course there is no plaster/gunite. So "corrosion" in the sense of dissolving calcium carbonate from plaster is not possible for you (aren't your pool walls vinyl?). As for "corrosion" of metal, that is very unlikely at your pH so long as you keep it well above 7.0 (7.4 is fine). You'd have to have a heck of a lot of dissolved oxygen in your pool to corrode metal at this higher pH so I wouldn't worry about that. For a little extra safety, you can do as you suggest and add some more calcium by using Cal-Hypo for a while, but I don't think that's necessary.

    Technically, the fact that you've been running with virtually no calcium means that the TA level doesn't really matter -- you are already corrosive for calcium carbonate, but that isn't relevant for vinyl pools with no grout/plaster/gunite exposed to water.

    As for salt, it is technically more corrosive for metal since it increases conductivity, but again this isn't a problem in your situation because you don't have a lot of dissolved oxygen in your water and you are keeping the pH alkaline (> 7.0). If you had some sort of iron parts exposed to your pool, then slow rust could happen, but generally any metal designed to be exposed to pool water is either stainless or galvanized steel which resists corrosion or is copper (in heaters) which doesn't corrode as readily as iron (raw steel).

    Richard
    Last edited by chem geek; 08-21-2006 at 12:50 AM.

  5. #15
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    Default Re: Does Alkalinity Cause pH To Increase Faster?

    Jim
    What brand of AG pool do you have ??
    As for the salt I spoke with Artesian Pools about adding salt to my pool before I dropped it in and was told it would NOT hurt my warranty.
    I too am lowering my ALK to around 50 or so to halt pH rise.
    Steve

  6. #16
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    Default Re: Does Alkalinity Cause pH To Increase Faster?

    Quote Originally Posted by medvampire
    Jim
    What brand of AG pool do you have ??
    As for the salt I spoke with Artesian Pools about adding salt to my pool before I dropped it in and was told it would NOT hurt my warranty.
    I too am lowering my ALK to around 50 or so to halt pH rise.
    Steve
    My pool also is Artesian brand, so that's good to know. I am replacing my liner next year and plan to add salt then. I had a small seam failure the second year I had my pool. Forutunately is was repairable by a local leak locator service. I sent pictures to the manufacturer and for a small charge they sent me a new liner. It's been in storage for 3 years.

    Thanks for the info.

    Jim

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