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  iam buying new desktop comp do i have to buy a new softwre 8.0

  Posted by Ellis Rivera - 3/18/2024 9:03:39 PM

because my descktop is verry old

  Phosphates, Iron and Copper Tests in Texas

  Posted by Chuck - 8/24/2020 7:56:30 AM

My local pool store/water tester tests for phosphates, Iron and copper. Have inputs for these test been considered? It would be useful so your form and theirs would show the same test input results.

  Posted by - 2/21/2021 12:55:59 PM

There's nothing to calculate and there's no ideal range. Lower is better because all 3 of those components have a negative effect on the water. So we didn't see a need to devote a slider in the software for those components.

  User Name

  Posted by Pam - 8/9/2020 4:40:51 PM

Where Do I change User Name ? I changed Password

  Posted by - 2/21/2021 12:53:30 PM

The username is set when you order the software. We can do it manually to whatever you need. Just click on Help, Contact and send us a private message. This will valid that it's coming from you.

  Transfering pool history and set up from one device to another ?

  Posted by Ken - 6/18/2020 10:39:42 PM

Is there an easy way to transfer pool history and set up from one device to another ? or is it just manually?

  Posted by - 7/5/2020 2:28:44 PM

If you are using the desktop version 8.0, just copy the pools7.mdb and chemicals7.mdb database files to your new computer. If you are using the 360 version, it's all done automatically as the data is saved on our website.

  How do I delete a pool?

  Posted by jhiltabidel - 6/1/2020 12:46:01 PM

I setup a pool, saved it, entered data and saved the history. Next day the power went out at our house and maybe the software was open? When I launch it I was required to setup a pool and it says "Pool #2". Need the old pool info -- don't need the new pool at all.

  Posted by - 6/7/2020 4:09:47 PM

Just click on Pool/Spa Settings, Go down to the bottom and click on Delete.

  Can the COVID-19 Coronavirus spread through pools and hot tubs?

  Posted by - 3/18/2020 6:28:05 PM

According to the CDC; There is no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread to humans through the use of pools and hot tubs. Proper operation, maintenance, and disinfection (e.g., with chlorine and bromine) of pools and hot tubs should remove or inactivate the virus that causes COVID-19.

  Add Previous History

  Posted by Meredith - 1/16/2020 2:17:05 PM

Just got the app. Is there a way I may add previous test results manually from the last few months so I have a complete charting record?

  Posted by - 3/8/2020 6:32:45 PM

The software automatically saves the tests to your history file. You can go to Reports/History and modify any of the test results by clicking on the edit (pencil icon) button.

  Tracking Chemicals Added

  Posted by Chris N - 6/19/2019 2:44:49 PM

Is there a way to track the chemicals I add to my pool with Perfect Pool 360?

  Posted by - 7/1/2019 3:52:30 PM

There is a notes entry section at each test. You can enter notes when you do the test or later in the history. The history will show each test result, recommendations and your notes as well as graphical charts.

  I have PerfectPoolandSpa Software version 7.1.49. Why should I upgrade to Desktop Version 8.0?

  Posted by SandraGB - 12/31/2018 1:24:25 PM

I have PerfectPoolandSpa Software version 7.1.49. Why should I upgrade to Desktop Version 8.0? Do you have a list of "enhancements" in the new release?

  Posted by - 2/5/2019 1:45:32 PM

Version 8.0 was built on a brand new Windows platform. This version allows us to make more changes and enhancements in the future. Here's a change list for the record:
3.50 added combo list box for special actions clear, cloudy, algae shock now etc.
3.51 changed formulas to better match nspi and to be consistent between muriatic acid and dry acid
3.52 Chlorine generator changes TDS factor to 12.3 because of anticipated TDS > 3000
3.53 Added PoolConfig.ini file for easy customization and product modification
3.60 (08-22-01) Added more customization, biguanide sanitizer, hydrogen peroxide slider, sodium chloride slider, copper as a sanitizer. When temp is less than 70 and ph is high keep it there if this would lower the SI.
-also added 5 time use to demo and now allow them to change setup so it's more useful.
3.61 (08/30/01) save history on exit option, site on the chemical handling menu
4.10 (09/04/01) Removed hydrogen peroxide as shock product when used with chlorine. Nspi says it's neutralized so would not work to breakpoint chlorinate
4.20 (09/27/01) Charts added to history.
4.30 (10/05/01) Volume capacity increased to 1,000,000 gallons. Maximum range adjustments added to volume slider.
4.40 (10/19/01 Error logging added. Bug fix in personal maintenance when bromine and nonchlorine shock is used.
4.50 (11/05/01) Multiple pools, multiple history files, Enhanced printout, customized printout.
4.60 (01/01/04) Increased maximum on salt slider to 10,000 PPM
5.00 (09/05/04) Converted all data to Microsoft Access Format
5.02 (09/13/04) Added pool list features: Print single pool, print pool list, export pool list to Excel, Open Microsoft Access database on menu. Enhanced history file import to import trashed files.
5.03 (05/24/06) Changed report to Crystal Reports. Added report.mdb and several supporting files. (fixes some printers that cut the bottom off). Added report capability to from History list. Changed resolution of total alkalinity to 1, calcium to 5, CYA to 1.
7.1.1 Moved to Microsoft Dot Net 2.0
7.1.49 Latest version of gen 7.1
8.0.1 Moved to Microsoft Dot Net 4.0 (Full Version)
New charting module for enhanced viewing
Ability to enter email addresses in database
New PDF document creation
Ability to email reports
Added high phosphate calculator
bug fix missing icon
Modified MSDS hyperlink
added release notes
Modified Microsoft Access connection string (user id = admin)
Copyright year change
Bug fixes in water calculator
Added notes in treatment recommendation to remind users that sanitizer problems override other test results. Also, added note about faulty combined chlorine readings when using electronic testers.
Added note that CYA over 50 PPM reduces effectiveness of chlorine
Added combined chlorine tolerance option in preferences
Fixed bug in Total Chlorine slider to display green if within combined chlorine tolerance
Added exclusive user access to question/answer forum.
Added reminder in recommendations that non-chlorine shock does not raise free chlorine and it does not kill bacteria

  Are reagents still good?

  Posted by Flintlock G’dad - 9/11/2018 10:20:48 AM

Is there a simple way to verify that the reagents being used to test pool chemistry are still good? Am getting more volatility in readings than changing conditions would seem to justify. None of the reagents are close to their expiration date.

  Posted by - 2/5/2019 1:33:52 PM

Most reagents have an expiration date on them. Usually around 2 years.

  Pool/Spa Water Contamination Warning

  Posted by - 9/4/2018 4:33:45 PM

Pool/Spa Water Contamination Warning
High Risk Contamination occurs when there is diarrhea in the water, cryptosporidium parasites, legionnaires bacteria or pseudomonas bacteria in the water. These pathogens are extremely harmful and very chlorine resistant. A concentration of chlorine much higher than routine shocking is required to neutralize them
Peak season is June, July, and August
32% of outbreaks are at hotels
20% of routine public pools and spas are found to have improper disinfectant levels
If you suspect this pathogen of being in your pool or spa water you MUST vacate the pool or spa and decontaminate the water ASAP!
PerfectPoolandSpa Software instructions: Click on Problem Solver, Then click on Contamination - High Risk. Follow the instructions.

  company name on invoices

  Posted by Carol - 3/21/2018 9:57:00 AM

How do I place our company name on invoices sent to our customers

  Posted by - 4/12/2018 12:29:20 PM

Click on Program Settings, Then Optional User Information. You can add your company logo too if you like.

  Multiple Pool Recordings per Day

  Posted by Brook - 8/7/2017 10:12:03 AM

We check our chemicals 3 times per day and would like to be able to keep track of all 3 recordings with the Perfect Pool Software. From what I can tell, it will only keep track of 1 recording per day unless there is a setting that we have missed. Thanks you for any help you can offer.

  Posted by - 8/11/2017 7:35:57 AM

Brook: The software saves the test results every time you move one of the sliders. This would quickly fill up your database with hundreds of records each day. For this reason we save the last change for that day. The intent was to give you a history record not necessarily a detailed log. It would also, make the graphical history charts worthless. However, we are working on an option which will allow you to manually add multiple tests throughout the day.

  how to lower free chlorine

  Posted by coco - 8/6/2017 5:15:28 PM

my free chlorine is high need help to lower it

  Posted by - 8/11/2017 7:31:32 AM

Coco; There's a chemical sodium thiosulfate that will lower chlorine. However, it's very expensive to add to a pool. Therefore, I wouldn't use it. The chlorine will naturally drop on it's own. Just turn down the chlorinator and measure the chlorine until it drops on it's own.

  How to add notes to details page.

  Posted by Bob - 8/1/2017 3:10:32 PM

Where can I enter chemicals and amounts used on a daily basis?

  Posted by - 8/11/2017 7:28:13 AM

Bob: There are a few ways to do this. You can just click on the icon right above the sliders and enter anything you want. This will be saved in the history with that test. You can also go back and pull up the history. This form allows you modify or add additional information in multiple fields.

  ORP testing

  Posted by David - 7/17/2017 6:12:07 PM

Have you thought of adding ORP readings to the other readings you have? It would seem like adding this reading would help to easily see how effective your sanitation is and to help determine the effects of PH and Cyanuric acid levels are on the ORP reading.

  Posted by - 8/11/2017 7:25:10 AM

David: Yes. The ORP testing will indicate the effectiveness of your sanitation. However, it won't modify the treatment. This will show up automatically in the software in the form of combined chlorine. Just input the total and free chlorine. The software will tell you how much and what to add.

  Pool RX

  Posted by Randy - 4/7/2017 7:30:00 PM

Hello, Is there any way we could get a software update for people that use Pool RX . We use less Chlorine and other products and the current stats of this program are not correct .

  Posted by - 5/9/2017 4:28:00 PM

Randy; All you have to do is modify the ideal ranges in Program Settings. POOL RX tm is one of many sanitizer helpers. There have been dozens of these over the decades. They use heavy metals such as silver, copper, lead, zinc, etc. They may help to kill bacteria and algae but do not provide a residual sanitizer like chlorine or bromine do. It may help to slow down your chlorine demand but won't eliminate the need for a chlorine or bromine. You really don't have to change anything in our software because if your POOL RX tm truly works then the test results will indicate so. The software only recommends chemicals when they are actually needed. Again, you can change the ideal range setting on our software in Program Settings if you want to experiment with a lower setting. They are set by default to the standard ANSI/NSPI/APSP settings. Just be careful, if you set the chlorine level too low it will be subject to wild swings in combined chlorine and algae blooms which may actually require shocking more often. Also, we have received numerous complaints over the years regarding stains on the pool surface or discolored hair from using metal products such as silver, zinc and copper in the pool.

  Pool Service Software Advanced Features for Pool Service Companies

  Posted by - 2/11/2017 5:28:21 PM

We have added new features!!
Our Pool Care Software is simple to use and was designed for the home user,
•But we have added features specifically for pool service companies available at no additional charge.
•Create and email invoices to your customers in seconds!
•Track payments and account balances.
•Simple, fast and flexible setup.
•Custom invoices with your logo.
•Multiple users with restrictions. No charge per user.
•Unlimited items per invoice with ability to add discounts and sales tax.
•Add your own account numbers, invoice numbers, purchase order numbers and notes to each invoice.
•Send payment link to your customers for instant online payment.
•A complete solution for pool service companies.
•Multiple simultaneous access from all your devices!
Click here for more information:

  Temperature of pool vs total alkalinity vs PH

  Posted by R Boesel - 1/16/2017 4:20:18 AM

I am frustrated trying to adjust the PH/alkalinity using the software. I have a pool with attached spa that runs all winter (we live in NC). Recently with cold weather the pool temp dropped to 46 and the software had me target alkalinity of 155 PPM - so I had to add like 12 cups of Sodium Bicarb, then I Had to adjust the PH to get the PH Down by adding a few cups of Muratic acid--OK so far so good. Now a few days later the weather warmed and now the pool is 55 and my target alkalinity is 120 and I am sitting at 150PPM and the software says I need to add 12 cups of Muratic acid. I seem to be chasing my tale adding buffer and acid with minor temp changes. Are we sitting on a logarithmic portion of a curve in the software ?

  Posted by - 1/24/2017 10:01:41 AM

The software is doing what it's supposed to do. It's using the default ranges as established by the National Spa and Pool Institute. However, I don't think their intention was to have you adjust such drastic temperature ranges over a short period of time. Here's what I would do. Go to Pool Settings/Ideal Range Settings and modify the ranges to allow for more tolerance. Just change the minimum and maximum ranges for total alkalinity from 80 to 180 for all temperature ranges.

  Additional Users

  Posted by - 12/11/2016 5:56:14 PM

Perfect Pool Software 360 now allows you to add Additional Users!! Just click on Miscellaneous/Additional Users. You can allow friends or business partners to access some or all of your pools with a separate login ID and password of your choosing. You decide what features they can access. If you are a pool service company you can assign technicians different routes.

  Cant keep Bromine levels up

  Posted by Jimmy - 10/30/2016 10:07:52 AM

I'm in week 2 with a new tub and would appreciate any insight into water health. I have a caldera (475 gallons) with an ozone system and inline spa frog bromine system.

I bought an electronic tester and have been monitoring/playing with the chemical levels for a couple of days. I'm using amerse spa care products as suggested by the dealer and came with the tub.

When I got home Thursday and tested the bromine levels were low 0.2
Ph was 7.8
Alkalinity was 87
Calcium Hardness was 134

I tried opening the bromine tab up to notch 6 and left it overnight and next morning down to zero.

Yesterday I used a shock/startup (1.5 oz Frog Jump Start packet) packet to bring it back up and also re-leveled the bromine cartridge back to notch 3. Within an hour the bromine level went back up to 7.8

Left this overnight and just re-tested this morning and it's the following:
Bromine: 0.0
Ph: 7.8
A: 86
CH: 134

Any tips on how to keep bromine level up? I know it should be above 0.5 with the ozone system. Do I have biofilm and should I purge the tub?

  Posted by - 11/1/2016 2:39:29 PM

Hi Jimmy;
According to their website, the Frog Jump Start ingredients are 33% sodium dichlor chlorine granules (21% chlorine). This is a stabilized chlorine product designed for outdoor pools or spas that are in sunlight. So one thing I would do is make sure your Perfect Pool and Spa software is set up to match that.
Step 1: Go to Spa Settings. The daily sanitizer should be Bromine. The shock product should be stabilized dichloro chlorine.
Step 2: Go to program settings, chemical settings. Change the percent active percent to 21% for stabilized dichloro chlorine.

They are assuming the chlorine will recharge the existing bromine. However, you don't know for sure how much bromine is in the water. I would buy a supplemental sodium bromide granule product to bring the bromine level up to 4 PPM as recommended by most professionals. Once this is established you can start relying on your brominator and ozonator.
When you input 0.2 bromine into the software it should tell you exactly how much sodium bromide you need to add. If you would like to talk live, just give me a call at 407 290 2301

  Using Non Chlorine Shock Products in a Chlorine Pool or Spa

  Posted by - 9/26/2016 12:16:38 PM

Non-Chlorine Shock products oxidize waste and combined chlorine but they do not kill bacteria and they may not raise the free chlorine level when needed. We recommend using chlorine shock products with chlorine sanitizers.

  Borate, Borax, Boron, Boric Acid use in Pool and Spa Water

  Posted by - 11/15/2016 1:53:43 PM

If you want to use borax instead of a traditional pH increaser you can modify the custom display name of "pH Up" in custom chemical settings to "Borate", etc.

Keep in mind, every chemical you add to the pool or spa water comes with side effects which are all in delicate balance with one another and are complicated to predict the final test results.  Those predictions are all intertwined in complex algorithms within Perfect Pool and Spa software.

Every chemical that adjusts the ph will also affect the carbonate, tds and buffer abilities of the water.

You could use lemonade to lower the ph but you would end up with unintended side consequences.  Borax is one of many chemicals that both raises pH and total alkalinity.  However it also raises boron levels in the water which has no recommended ideal range.

I would stick to soda ash, sodium carbonate for ph up and baking soda to raise total alkalinity.  These are tried and true products which have been tested over decades.  They are also the choice of health departments, National Spa and Pool Institute and ASPI.

If you are still absolutely compelled to use borates, I would use them at the manufacturers recommended rate. But I would still test the water to verify that total alkalinity and pH are still in the ideal range. If the borate product is truly doing it's job then no adjustment should be necessary. If the software recommends adjustments it will probably be minor adjustments using traditional chemicals such as pH up, acid or total alkalinity.

  reset ideal range settings

  Posted by Bossman - 9/9/2016 7:31:00 PM

Is there a way to reset ideal range settings to the program default? Thanks

  Posted by - 9/10/2016 2:45:03 PM

Which version of software do you have? PerfectPool 7.1, 8.0, Anyware or the new 360?

  Posted by - 9/10/2016 3:35:38 PM

FYI; Here are the recommended default ideal ranges for pools and spas.

  Black Spots In Your Vision

  Posted by - 9/7/2016 2:40:46 PM

If you see black spots in front of your eyes all the time, you probably should see a doctor. However, if you only see black spots when looking at your pool or spa, you probably have a pool chemistry problem and algae.
Algae are single-cell plants. There are over 30,000 varieties and they exist almost everywhere on earth. They need sunlight, carbon dioxide and warm water to grow.
Most algae begins with a slippery slimy feel on pool or spa walls before it is visible. In just a few hours it can multiply to the point where it completely overtakes the water and causes cloudiness or haze. This is called "Algae Bloom".

There are 3 main types of algae that are usually found in pool and spa water:
1. GREEN ALGAE - This type of algae floats in the water or forms on the sides of the pool or spa as Green Dust. The water can become so cloudy or turbid that it is unsafe because you can't see the bottom.
2. YELLOW ALGAE - Also called "Mustard Algae" because of the mustard color, appears as yellow powder deposits usually on the shady sides of the walls.
3. BLACK ALGAE - This type of algae also appears as a Blue-Green color and forms very adhesive dime to quarter size spots on pool and spa surfaces.
Algae does not form in the presence of adequate levels of free chlorine. Algae is an indication of poor chlorine level maintenance. However, once established, algae may become chlorine resistance in concentrations up to 5 PPM Free Chlorine.
The best algae prevention is prudent maintenance of free chlorine levels.
Algaecides can also be used to control algae but they do not destroy the organic waste nor do they sanitize the pool after an algae bloom. However, they can be used to make up for sloppy chlorine maintenance. (See Problem Solver Topic: Algaecides)

Once algae is established you must treat the water with 30 PPM of Free Chlorine. This kills the algae and destroys the organic waste left behind.
* Add Sodium Hypochlorite Liquid Chlorine to 30 PPM
Make sure the pump, filter and Chlorinator are working properly. Run pump continuously for 24 hours and then sweep thoroughly. Do not use the Pool or Spa until all chemical levels are back to normal and the water is crystal clear.

Maintain proper levels of chlorine. Follow Basic Routine Maintenance Schedule.

  How Chlorine Works

  Posted by - 9/4/2016 3:52:47 PM

Chlorine needs to be present in the pool or spa at all times. It reacts instantly with waste products to sanitize and protect your pool water. The more waste you dump into your pool the more chlorine is needed. The amount of chlorine used by your pool is referred to as "Chlorine Demand".

All chlorine types disssociate in water into hypochlorous acid [HOCl] and hydrochloric acid [HCl]. Hypochlorous acid is the active sanitizer. Also referred to as "Free Chlorine". Bromine chemistry is similar except hypobromous acid [HOBr] is the active sanitizer.

The filter eventually removes most of the solid chemical waste by products. Some of the by products are gasses and are released into the air. Notice that several of the by products from chemicals and waste remain in the pool and build up over time. The major portion of this build up is referred to as "Total Dissolved Solids" (TDS)

  Calcium Hardness

  Posted by - 8/30/2016 11:53:46 AM

Perfect Range 150 - 400 PPM

Temperature + Total Alkalinity + pH + Calcium Hardness + Stabilizer Adjustment + TDS = Saturation Index

Calcium salts in water are hard to make suds or soap bubbles, so the water is referred to as "hard" water. The higher the concentration of calcium in water, the harder the water is. Water with a low concentration of Calcium is referred to as "soft" water. Calcium is the most abundant mineral in pool water. If calcium is too high, scale forms on pool surfaces and equipment. If calcium is too low the water is corrosive to equipment and surfaces. The trick is to have just the right amount of calcium to prevent corrosion and scaling. Since other factors such as PH, temperature and total alkalinity affect how calcium is kept in solution, you must know the saturation index of the water to determine what the calcium should be. If the total saturation index is low, calcium is needed. If the total saturation index is high, too much calcium is present. Since calcium can not be removed from the water, it is pretty much fixed. For this reason, the saturation index is adjusted using other factors such as total alkalinity or PH first. Once a minimum level of calcium is established, the saturation index is adjusted with total alkalinity and PH if possible. Since seasonal temperature fluctuations affect the saturation index, it makes the most sense to adjust the total alkalinity because it can be increased and lowered at will. Once calcium is too high the only way to remove it is to drain part of the pool and replace it with fresh water of low calcium.

In extreme cases where drinking water is very high in calcium, it may be necessary to fill the pool with water that has been treated with a water softener.
•Increase Calcium Hardness with Calcium Chloride
•Decrease Calcium by draining and refilling with soft water

  Salt Chlorine Generator

  Posted by - 8/30/2016 6:29:02 AM

Reminder: If you are using the desktop version of the software and have a salt chlorine generator, you have the option of testing for salt. It's more accurate if you actually test for it. Most salt chlorine systems display the salt PPM. But lacking this and/or a test kit you can choose not to test for it. The software will make assumptions on the salt level to balance the water. You really need to test for salt to prevent damage to the salt cell. Too low salt forces the cell to work harder and reduces it's life. There is also a setting to change the ideal range according to the manufacturers recommendation.

  Posted by - 8/30/2016 11:13:46 AM

The 360 version and Anyware versions also have salt chlorinator options.

  Perfect Pool Software Balance Logic

  Posted by - 8/30/2016 6:24:49 AM

We get numerous questions regarding the logic involved when recommending water treatment when several things are out of whack at the same time in your pool or spa. All of our software versions are designed to correct water problems in baby steps rather than trying to do everything at once. For example; if chlorine is low but pH is also low, the software will tell you to correct the chlorine FIRST. Water SANITATION takes priority over water BALANCE for health reasons. Another thing to keep in mind is that chlorine and other additives will also affect the pH and possibly many other water factors such as total alkalinity, calcium and/or pH.
Once the sanitizer is corrected the software will start working on the other problems one step at a time in order to prevent adding chemicals that counteract one another.

  Converting Biguanide Pools Back to Chlorine

  Posted by - 8/27/2016 12:12:12 PM

Converting Biguanide Pools Back to Chlorine:

The following was emailed to us as a suggested method to convert back to chlorine:
•STEP ONE: Stop adding your biquanide-chemicals. Allow levels to drop down very close to 0. You may want to run filter longer, and add poly-quat algacide when levels begin to get low. This process may take several weeks.

•STEP TWO: Clean the filter. Biguanides can clog up filters, and leave chemical residue which may react with chlorine. If you have a Sand Filter, it is recommended that you CHANGE THE SAND in the tank. If this is not done, you must at least use a sand filter cleaning product made by your biguanide manufacturer. The same applies to Cartridge Filters. You should REPLACE THE CARTRIDGE, or at least clean it and then soak the cartridge in a similar cleaning product, and rinse thoroughly. If you have a D.E. filter, backwash it and open the filter tank; following printed instructions on tank. Remove filter, hose off thoroughly, then soak it in the cleaning product mentioned above. Hose again thoroughly and reassemble.

•STEP THREE: Balance the pool water chemistry. Then shock the pool with NON-CHLORINE SHOCK, Also called potassium peroxymonosulfate. Add it at a rate of 8 lbs. per 10,000 gallons of pool water. So, if your pool is 22,000 gallons, you'll need 17 or 18 lbs. Add 1/2 the shock, wait 24-48 hrs and then add the remaining. Add the shock according to directions on package, with the filter pump running. Pool may turn cloudy for a few days if biguanide levels are not zero. Re-check and balance water chemistry. Run filter 24/7 until water clears, backwashing as necessary.

•STEP FOUR: Finally, we begin to add chlorine, very slowly. Place one tablet in skimmer basket, floater or chlorinator. If your pool doesn't react to it (by turning funny colors) keep it in until it dissolves. Then add 2 tablets, and so on, until you are able to get chlorine readings of 1.0 ppm with your test kit. Maintain this level with tablets. Refrain from using chlorine shock products for one season, substituting non-chlorine shock, as needed.

A good time to switch may be in the spring, after a winter of not adding any baquacil or soft swim. I have heard reports of others who have said that they simply let their pool go very green, made sure the baquacil levels were 0 and then shocked it with chlorine.


  Posted by - 9/2/2016 4:01:34 PM

Biguanides were originally developed as a surgery scrub disinfectant.

Chlorine and Bromine are considered halogens because they form a negative ion and are in group VII of the periodic chart. Biguanide is a NON-halogen. The chemical name is guanylguanidine [C2, H7 N5]. PolyHexaMethylene Biguanide also referred to as Polymeric Biguanide or simply PHMB is available under the trade names Baquacil TM, BaquaSpa TM and SoftSwim TM. .

It is the only non-halogen approved by the EPA for sanitizing, but it is not recommended by the National Pool and Spa Institute (NSPI) for use in spas and most swimming pools. It is NOT an oxidizer, so it will not break down body oils, waste and perspiration.

Biguanide is generally used in conjunction with algaecides and hydrogen peroxide for shocking. According to the users, the overall cost of maintenance is higher with Biguanides than with Chlorine.

Biguanide is not compatible with other pool chemicals that contain chlorine, bromine, iodine, silver, copper or persulfate. It is also not compatible with other household chemicals such as detergents, cleaners, etc. READ THE LABEL CAREFULLY!

We have had reports of Biguanides gumming up pool equipment especially DE and cartridge filters. People have said that sand filters gum up the LEAST with Biguanides but you MUST clean them every 3 or 4 weeks. This is in ADDITION to backwashing.

They are also known to cause a scum ring around pools and lots of foaming in spas.

To counter these drawbacks, the manufacturers also sell a wide ion of special additives such as filter cleaners, anti-foamers, anti-scum ring cleaners, algaecides, etc.

Most Biguanide systems include 7 special chemicals for start up and routine maintenance:

1.) Biguanide Solution to maintain 20 to 60 PPM (manufacturers disagree on the ranges)

2.) An Algaecide to be used weekly. (Seems to be some disagreement among the manufacturers as to whether Quats or PolyQuats are compatible.)

3.) Hydrogen Peroxide shock to be used monthly or as needed to maintain 20 to 60 PPM (manufacturers disagree on the ranges)

4.) A defoamer to be used as needed

5.) A poolside scum cleaner to be used as needed

6.) A filter cleaner to be used about every 2 months

7. A filter aid (flocculant)

We have seen lots of negative comments about Biguanides for one reason or another. We have also seen lots of web pages dedicated to detailing the steps to converting from Biguanides back to chlorine. Not sure if it's their misuse or what. For these reasons, we are skeptical of their use in pools and spas.

  Posted by - 9/2/2016 3:44:36 PM

For what it's worth, here are a few quotes:

"I have been one of those people posting problems with Baquacil. I was anxious to read your post hoping that it would tell me some new information that would tell me what I did wrong for 3 years even though I have now switched to chlorine. I am sorry to say that I followed all your instructions for 3 seasons (which were also explained to me by my pool pro) and I had nothing but problems every year. Now of course I have only been using the Nature2 and chlorine for a little more than a month and I cannot say if I will have problems or not this season, BUT I can say 2 things that I do know for sure. 1. I spent one third the money on chemicals for this season than I would have just on the normal BAQ system. This amount does not include any of the "special" chemicals I needed to solve problems....which might I add never worked any way. And 2. My water has NEVER been so clear and beautifully sparkling clear. I find (and so do countless others on this site and others) chlorine is cheaper and more effective than BAQ."

Jane S., California

I have a 15 foot round X 42 inch intex pool with a cartridge filter. I was using Baquicil and having nothing but expensive troubles. We emptied it, cleaned it, moved it, and refilled it. I switched to chlorine.

Susan Wood

  Posted by - 8/27/2016 12:11:17 PM

Now that you've heard all the bad things, here are the advantages.


- Not affected by sunlight, temperature or pH

-May not irritate skin or eyes

-May not corrode pool equipment like oxidizers

-No smell

-Does not require a dispenser

-Degrades slowly

-Feels softer due to reduced water surface tension

  Posted by Geo in Arizona - 9/2/2016 4:21:07 PM

I had always heard it was a hassle to use

  Lamotte Color Q Test Kit Problems

  Posted by - 10/17/2016 12:19:06 PM

This test kit is very accurate but sometimes it can cause you to chase your tail. I have had many phone calls from users telling me it consistently reads total chlorine higher than free chlorine. In other words, it's finding minute quantities of combined chlorine even in tap water. If you input those readings into our software, it will warn you that you have combined chlorine and that you need to add additional free chlorine. The formula calls for 10 times the amount of combined chlorine. So if you have 0.1 PPM of combined chlorine, you need to add 1.0 PPM of free chlorine to burn it out. You test it again in a few days, and again you have 0.1 PPM of combined chlorine and so on but if you keep adding more chlorine, the pool or spa will eventually have too much free chlorine.
Our software has a setting for combined chlorine tolerance. The default setting is 0.2 PPM which is the maximum recommended amount per the National Spa and Pool Institute. Keeping this setting will save you from having to constantly adjust the water. Once the combined chlorine reaches 0.2 PPM the software will alert you to raise the free chlorine by 2 PPM. The calculation will be made based upon the volume of your pool or spa.

  Posted by Chris - 8/19/2018 8:35:39 PM

I just got one of these test kits, I'm wondering what precision I should use when entering the chlorine values. I was using whole numbers with the colored test strips, I entered a single precision value on the first test with the digital kit. It does two precision numbers. Is there a recommendation based on how the software works? For example should I round the numbers to the nearest whole number, go with single digit precision, or does it make sense to do the full double digit precision?

  Salty Water Taste

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:36:41 PM

This is normally caused by a high concentration of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS). TDS is an accumulation over time of all of the chemicals you've added to the water. Generally, TDS should be kept below 5,500 PPM. You can purchase a TDS tester or have the water tested at a pool supply company.

Drain water and refill with fresh water of lower TDS. You can reduce the TDS to half by draining 1/2 of the water and refilling with fresh water.

  pH bounces up or down

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:36:15 PM

PH is a measure of the amount of acid or base in solution. Adding acid lowers the PH. Adding base raises the PH. Adding too much acid one day may require adding base or PH Down the next day. This up and down cycle is referred to as "PH Bounce"

Total Alkalinity buffers or absorbs both acid and base in pool water preventing "PH Bounce". Therefore, increasing the amount of Total Alkalinity can improve this situation.

Test water and input all results into the test kit entry section. Total Alkalinity adjustments will be recommended if needed.

  High Calcium High TDS

  Posted by - 9/18/2016 8:01:03 AM

The maximum recommended level of Calcium Hardness is 400 PPM. The maximum recommended TDS is 5,500 PPM.

EVERYTHING that you add to the pool or spa INCLUDING TAP WATER has residual chemicals that eventually build up in the pool or spa. A special problem is tap water that is high in Calcium Hardness. In most cases you can still balance the Saturation Index of the water, but it will be at the expense of some other factor as follows:

Reducing the Temperature reduces the Saturation Index but makes the pool unusable. Reducing the Total Alkalinity reduces the Saturation Index but causes PH Bounce. Reducing the PH reduces the Saturation Index but is irritating to the eyes and skin. Leaving the Saturation Index and Calcium high causes cloudy water, scaling of walls and severe damage to pumps, plumbing, filters and heater equipment.

Drain water and refill with fresh water of lower Calcium Hardness. You can reduce the TDS to half by draining 1/2 of the water and refilling with fresh water. It won't do any good to drain and refill the pool with tap water that is 400 PPM or higher. You may need to find another water source such as by delivery truck. Depending on the cost, if this water is low enough in calcium it will probably last years. Another alternative is to purchase a water softener. Water Softeners remove 100% of the calcium from the water. However, a water softener will not reduce total TDS because calcium and magnesium ions will be replaced with an equal number of potassium or sodium ions. Water softeners can be purchased from stores like Sears or Home Depot. Compared to the cost of pool pump, filtration and heater systems this could be a wise investment.

  High Chlorine Consumption

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:20:59 PM

This can be caused by a number of things. Here are some factors which contribute to this:

- High bather load

- High water temperature

- Use of Un-Stabilized Chlorines or Stabilizer Level is Low

- It is also possible that cyanuric acid is too high. Over 50 PPM, cyanuric acid reduces the effectiveness of chlorine.

- Improper Water Balance

Test water (including stabilizer) and input all results into the test kit entry section. Follow recommendations.

  Eye or Skin Irritation

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:20:25 PM

This can be caused from a number of problems. Here are some possibilities:

- PH Too Low or Too High

- Improper Water Balance

- Combined Chlorine

- Excessive Organic Waste

- High Total Dissolved Solids

- Algaecides

- Algae

- High Chlorine (above 10 PPM)

1.) Test water and input all results into test kit entry section. Follow recommendations.

2.) If water tests Perfect, shock pool to remove any traces of organic waste. Follow directions for shocking by clicking on 'Shock Normal Dose'

  Filter Clogged

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:19:27 PM

Filters eventually become clogged from dirt and algae. They may also become clogged from adding too many chemicals at one time. In most cases the chemicals will eventually dissolve. However, the pump may burn up if it isn't able to move enough water through it. The best way to evaluate the filter operation is to monitor the pressure gauge. When the pressure is more than 5 pounds higher than it was with a clean filter, it's time to clean it again.

PAPER OR CLOTH FILTER CARTRIDGE TYPE: These will have to be removed and washed. If simple rinsing doesn't do the trick try soaking the filter overnight in Tri-Sodium Phosphate (TSP) available from hardware stores. If all else fails you will have to buy a new filter cartridge.

SAND FILTER: Try backwashing the filter first. If this doesn't help, you may have to take the filter apart and inspect it for a clogged membrane. You will have to replace the sand and possibly the membrane. See a pool professional if you're not comfortable doing this yourself.

DIATOMACEOUS EARTH (DE) FILTER: Try backwashing the filter first. After you backwash, you'll have to add DE powder in the amount recommended by the manufacturer. If this doesn't help, you have may have a problem with filter membrane. DE filters should be taken apart and rinsed thoroughly once a year. See a pool professional if you're not comfortable doing this yourself.

  Chlorine Test Orange

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:18:43 PM

The chlorine is too high for the range of your test kit.

Discontinue adding chlorine and don't use the Pool until the level returns to normal.

If you need to know the actual amount of chlorine, try diluting the test sample with distilled water.

For example: Mix 1 part of test sample water with 4 parts of distilled water. Test the sample again and multiply the results by 5.

  Strong Chlorine Odor

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:18:09 PM

Free Chlorine at a level up to about 15 PPM has no detectable taste or odor and it causes no irritation. Free Chlorine that reacts with ammonia, bacteria and other waste products is converted into Combined Chlorine or Chloramines. Ammonia is a normal by product of the body from waste and sweat.

Combined Chlorine has a strong offensive smell which is what most people smell when they complain of a strong chlorine odor. Combined Chlorine also causes eye and skin irritation.

Combined Chlorine can be eliminated by adding enough chlorine product to bring the free chlorine up to 10 times the combined chlorine level. This is referred to as "Breakpoint Chlorination" or "Super chlorination".

Test both the Free and Total Chlorine levels. Enter the results in the test kit entry section and follow the recommendation.

If you don't test for both Free and Total Chlorine, just do a normal Shock. Click on 'Shock Normal Dose' for instructions.

  Corrosive Water

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:17:24 PM

Corrosive water causes etching of plaster, pitting of concrete and dissolving of grouting. Plastic liners wrinkle and crack. Pump and filter equipment corrode, rust and eventually freeze up or leak or both.

The saturation index is typically less than zero (0) and is caused by improper water balance.

Test all chemical levels. Enter the results in the test kit entry section and follow the recommendation.

  Scale on Walls

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:16:51 PM

A minimal amount of scale formation that looks like a fine dust is OK. Excess Scale forming on pool surfaces or equipment is an indication of too high a Saturation Index (greater than 0.5). This is caused from improper water balance.

1.) Test water and input all results into the test kit entry section of this software. Follow recommendations.

2.) If all factors test Perfect, see a pool professional about Scale Inhibitors.

  Stain on Pool or Spa Walls

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:16:18 PM

Water which causes stains on the pool, spa or metal surfaces is caused by either improper water balance or heavy metals in solution. Water with a low saturation index (less than zero) has a tendency to dissolve metals from pool equipment and deposit it onto pool surfaces.

Metals can come from the source water. Metals such as manganese and iron are common is some water supplies. DO NOT USE COPPER ALGAECIDES as they are also a source of metal staining.

1.) Test water and input all results into the main screen to balance the water.

2.) See a pool professional about Stain Inhibitors or Metal Sequestering Agents such as 'Jacks Magic Stuff'

3.) If you still have stains, see a pool professional about draining the water and Acid Washing the surfaces to remove stains. Acid washing typically uses a 3 to 4% solution of hydrochloric acid in water. This option should be reserved until after you are sure the water is in balance and metal sequestering agents have had a chance to do their job.

How to acid wash pool:

1.) You will need to have about 2 gallons of Muriatic Acid (34% or 20° Baum) and about 8 pounds of sodium carbonate (pH Up) on hand for a typical 10,000 gallon pool.

2.) Drain the pool. This should be done by a pool professional to prevent the pool from popping out of the ground.

3.) Prepare the acid solution inside the pool by mixing 16 oz. of normal Muriatic Acid (34.4% or 20° Baum) into one gallon of fresh water. KEEP HOSE WITH FRESH WATER RUNNING INSIDE POOL AS A PRECAUTION. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE ADEQUATE VENTILATION! ADD ACID TO WATER NOT WATER TO ACID! WEAR SAFETY GOGGLES! See NSPI Basic Pool and Spa Technologies manual page 10-37 for detailed instructions.

4.) Use a plastic sprinkle can and pour over pool surfaces (avoiding metal parts) until stain is removed or until foaming subsides. Then immediately rinse the area with fresh water to prevent corrosion.

5.) Neutralize the acid by rinsing down pool sides with a solution of 8 oz. Sodium Carbonate (pH Up) to one gallon fresh water.

6.) Immediately refill pool with fresh water.

7.) The chemistry of this pool is now similar to a new pool. You can click on New Pool Setup when you are all done.

  Sudsy or Foamy Water

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:15:17 PM

This can be caused by a number of things. Here are some factors which contribute to this:

- Algaecides

- High Total Dissolved Solids

- Soap Residue in Swimmers Clothing

- Improper Water Balance

1.) Test water and input all results into the main screen. Follow recommendations.

2.) If using algaecides, switch to a non-foaming type.

  Shock Triple Dose

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:14:33 PM

This is a routine shock to keep your Pool looking Perfect.

Raise Free Chlorine to 30 PPM

Run pump continuously for 24 hours and then sweep thoroughly. Do not use the Pool until all chemical levels are back to normal.

  Shock Double Dose

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:13:53 PM

This is a routine shock to keep your Pool looking Perfect.

Raise free chlorine to 20 PPM

Run pump continuously for 24 hours and then sweep thoroughly. Do not use the Pool until all chemical levels are back to normal.

  Shock Normal Dose

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:13:13 PM

This is a routine shock to keep your Pool looking Perfect.

Raise Free Chlorine to 10 PPM

Run pump continuously for 24 hours and then sweep thoroughly. Do not use the Pool until all chemical levels are back to normal.

  Pink Slime

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:12:21 PM

Your routine sanitation and shocking is not working. The water needs to be Double Shocked to bring the chlorine level up to 20 PPM to kill the Pink Slime Bacteria and to oxidize the waste.

Make sure the pump and filter are working properly. Run pump continuously for 24 hours and then sweep thoroughly. Do not use the Pool until all chemical levels are back to normal and the water is crystal clear. If this condition persists, see a pool professional.

  Cloudy, Smokey, Hazy Water

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:10:53 PM

One of the major causes of cloudy, smoky or hazy water is lack of adequate filtration. Your routine sanitation and shocking also may not be working.

Make sure the pump and filter are working properly. Run pump continuously for 24 hours and then sweep thoroughly. Do not use the Pool until all chemical levels are back to normal and the water is crystal clear. If this condition persists, see a pool professional.

  Green, Yellow or Black Algae

  Posted by - 9/2/2016 4:02:26 PM

Algae normally doesn't grow if the sanitizer level and pH is kept in the Perfect Range. You can either Triple Shock the water with 30 PPM Chlorine or use a Non-Copper algaecide. Triple Shocking has the added benefits of destroying other contaminants and sanitizing the water. Below are several options depending on which algaecide is available.

* Option 1: Add Stabilized Trichloro Chlorine)

* Option 2: Add Non-Copper Algaecide(60%
* Option 3: Add Non-Copper Algaecide(50%
* Option 4: Add Non-Copper Algaecide(40%
* Option 5: Add Non-Copper Algaecide(30%
* Option 6: Add Non-Copper Algaecide(20%
* Option 7: Add Non-Copper Algaecide(10%)

Make sure the pump and filter are working properly. Run pump continuously for 24 hours and then sweep thoroughly. Do not use the Pool until all chemical levels are back to normal and the water is crystal clear. If this condition persists, see a pool professional.

Note about algaecide ingredients: Non-copper algaecides are recommended because copper has been known to cause stains on surfaces. These come in various concentrations and use varying ingredients. There are basically 2 types of non-copper algaecides.

Quaternary Ammonia (Quats):

These come in concentrations of 10% to 60% and are relatively inexpensive. The main drawback to quaternary ammonia algaecides is foaming. Added to pool water the agitation provided by the pool pump is enough for the algaecide to add harmless suds to a pool. The active ingredient will look something like this: Alkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride.


These also come in concentrations of 10% to 60% and are the most expensive algaecides. They are a refinement of quat algaecides and eliminate the foaming problem entirely. The active ingredient will look something like this: Poly oxyethylene dimethyliminio ethylene dichloride or Poly Alkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride.

The dosage is usually 16 ounces (0.5 liters) per 10,000 gallons (47,850 liters) of water when using the 60% concentration of either product.

  Close Pool for Season

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:08:06 PM

Step 1: Remove all ladders, diving boards and other equipment to prevent corrosion.

Step 2: Thoroughly clean and brush. Run pump and filter continuously for 24 hours.

Step 3: Test water and input all test results on main screen. Lower the temperature reading on the software to the anticipated average water temperature during the winter. Follow recommendations. This will keep the water balanced during the down time.

Step 4: Triple shock water.

Step 5: Drain water from all pump, filter equipment and plumbing which may be harmed in a freeze.

Step 6: If ice will be a problem, drop several weighted closed plastic jugs into the water. You can also use large strips of styrofoam. This will absorb some of the expansion from the ice.

Step 7: Use a cover if you have one.

  Open Pool for Season

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:07:30 PM

Step 1: Thoroughly clean and brush. Run pump and filter continuously for 24 hours.

Step 2: Test water and input all test results on main screen. Follow recommendations EXCEPT FOR CHLORINE ADDITIONS.

Step 3: Triple shock water.

Step 4: Test water every 24 hours for 7 days. Input all test results on main screen. Follow recommendations. Each day will get you closer to a Perfect Pool.

Step 5: After 7 days follow recommendations in Personal Maintenance Schedule.

  New Pool Setup

  Posted by - 8/26/2016 3:06:37 PM

Step 1: Thoroughly clean and brush. Run pump and filter continuously for 24 hours.

Step 2: Test water and input all test results on main screen. Follow recommendations EXCEPT FOR CHLORINE ADDITIONS.

Step 3: Triple shock water.

Step 4: Test water every 24 hours for 7 days. Input all test results on main screen. Follow recommendations. Each day will get you closer to a Perfect Pool.

Step 5: After 7 days follow recommendations in Personal Maintenance Schedule.

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