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  1. #1
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    Getting rid of algae in your swimming pool

    We have had a continuous ongoing problem with algae in our pool and our neighbors have the same problem and we have spent a lot of money trying to control it
    I just purchased ! KG of copper sulphate from LAZADA for 265 baht and put 330 grams in the pool about 15 hours ago and now the algae is completely gone
    the recommended amount to use on the internet is 100 to 120 grams per 40,000 liters of water, Our pool holds approx 115,500 liters of water
    Copper sulphate does not evaporate in sunlight like chlorine does so once you pool is clear of algae it should only need to add more occasionally
    You mix the copper sulphate crystals in water then use a garden pressure spray to distribute over the entire surface of the pool

  2. #2
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    That' interesting. Do you know if there are any downsides to using copper sulphate? To health, pool liner or pump/filter equipment?

  3. #3
    Thailand Expat Dillinger's Avatar
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    According to the European Chemical Agency (ECHA), Copper Sulfate “is very toxic to aquatic life, is very toxic to aquatic life with long lasting effects, may cause cancer, may damage fertility or the unborn child, is harmful if swallowed, causes serious eye damage, may cause damage to organs through prolonged or repeated exposure.”

    In addition, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) pointed to risks to farmers, birds, mammals and soil organisms. Both the EFSA and the US Environmental Protection Agency say more data is needed on the potential health effects on consumers.
    https://geneticliteracyproject.org/2...authorization/

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    I guess it all depends on the concentration used. That looks bad for copper sulphate's effects on health but I'm sure chlorine would be just as harmful at too high concentrations. I'm going to look into this as we also have an ongoing algae problem.

  5. #5
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    For what it's worth a mate of mine in Cairns, Queensland, chucks in a couple of scoops of domestic bleach. He reckons it works well.

  6. #6
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    Salt water pools are common in Aus and I believe very popular because the salt is healthier than other chemicals and only a small amount of chlorine is necessary.

    I've looked into using a salt water system in Thailand but it would require changing the pump/filter system as salt water is so corrosive.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    That' interesting. Do you know if there are any downsides to using copper sulphate? To health, pool liner or pump/filter equipment?
    The downside is that anybody from a pool shop will threaten you something like in the post #3 above, beside that the wife (and you too) will get green hair.

    The reason (for making you afraid) is that the CS is very cheap (I pay 150 Baht per 1 kg sack). And you do not need to worry about pH maintaining that together with chlorine care is a daily job (or with a very automatic devices) and very expensive. So, with pH Minus and chlorine sale plus additional sophisticated devices the pools shops are kept alive, not with CS.

    E.g. German standard for drinking water is 2 ppm Cu, while the CS containes only 20 - 25% of Cu, hence you can use CS up to 8 - 10 ppm. But you will not drink the pool water, will you? Anyway, if drunk some, it does not poison you, the Cu limit 2ppm is to avoid a permanent drinking of such water.

    Beside the CS application, a smaller portion of chlorine (inorganic) every 3 - 4 days is also advisable. Helping with algaes (especially now when the nature is in blossom) and also killing bacteria, we are in tropical country.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dillinger View Post
    Copper Sulfate “is very toxic to aquatic life, is very toxic to aquatic life with long lasting effects, may cause cancer,
    Actually, there are many serious medicine studies about influence of chlorine in pool water on cancer, can googled. (and I think the doctors do not sell anything for swimming pools).

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    That' interesting. Do you know if there are any downsides to using copper sulphate? To health, pool liner or pump/filter equipment?
    In the small amount used to kill algae it is not poisonous to humans or fish just algae
    I bought a 4 liter container of pool shop chemical awhile back to kill the algae and it was the same color as copper sulphate when you mix it in water and cost 1300 baht and was only enough for one pool treatment and being Thailand there was no list of the chemicals used in it on the container
    All pool chemicals are poisonous if if you use to much of them
    In the multiple forums i have checked no one mentions that it effects pools, pumps or filters if used in the correct amount
    Over use can effect plastic pool liners

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by petercallen View Post
    In the multiple forums i have checked no one mentions that it effects pools,
    In some forums they will shout you when mentioning CS.
    Not in Canada where they say:

    Using copper sulphate algicides
    Copper sulphate-based swimming pool algicides can be used to:

    control algae
    improve water clarity
    reduce the amount of chlorine- or bromine-based products needed
    They do not:

    control microorganisms like bacteria and viruses
    eliminate the need for sanitizers
    Copper sulphate-based products must be used along with chlorine- or bromine-based sanitizers to protect bathers.

    The amount of copper sulphate-based algicide needed will vary depending on the size and type of your pool and its location, for example how much sunlight it receives.

    Note: Using copper sulphate-based algicides in swimming pools is not dangerous to swimmers. If you follow all label directions, copper sulphate algicides should not cause skin irritation. However when handling undiluted products, care must be taken to reduce the risk of skin irritation.
    https://www.canada.ca/en/health-cana...leaning.html#c

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klondyke View Post
    In some forums they will shout you when mentioning CS.
    Not in Canada where they say:


    https://www.canada.ca/en/health-cana...leaning.html#c
    It confirms what i have read on the Internet over the last 3 months, we have two grandchildren living with us 5 and 6 year olds and i would not use it if i thought it would harm their health
    I am about to vacuum the pool to waste after cleaning the water with Aluminum sulphate and will be adding another 330 grams of copper sulphate which should only bring the amount used to ! PPM

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    Salt water pools are common in Aus and I believe very popular because the salt is healthier than other chemicals and only a small amount of chlorine is necessary.

    I've looked into using a salt water system in Thailand but it would require changing the pump/filter system as salt water is so corrosive.
    When we bought our house about 9 years ago the salt water chlorinater was not working and the house was only 6 years old, i could not find anyone who could repair it and was quoted 65,000 baht for a new one
    That is about the same cost of buying chlorine for about 17 years

  13. #13
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    We built our house 13 years ago, so everything is that age. The filter/pump unit has been worked hard and will not keep going for ever. My plan is to change to a salt water unit once it has to be replaced anyway - I don't think a salt water unit is appreciable more expensive than a fresh water one.

    I think one reason that salt water pools are so popular in Australia (well at least in WA) is that if you live out of town with no scheme water, you tend collect rain water and also put in a borehole to hopefully get additional fresh water. Tree clearance has affected the water table so badly that the majority of boreholes hit brackish or salt water, so this is used in pools due to the scarcity of fresh water.

  14. #14
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    All the modern pool pumps are suitable for a salt water pool as long as they are not a really cheap one
    They have stainless steel impeller shafts and plastic impellers
    I had a salt water pool in Perth WA in the 1989 and never had a problem with the pump or filter and it was approx 15 years old when i sold the house

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    I've looked into using a salt water system in Thailand but it would require changing the pump/filter system as salt water is so corrosive.
    I have had a "salt water" system for 15 years now, you don't need to change pump or filter system, you only need enough salt to activate the chlorine production, which is very low at ~5k ppm.
    Last edited by Airportwo; 26-05-2019 at 05:32 PM. Reason: forgot the 'K"

  16. #16
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    Only problem ive had with my salt system was by way of a voltage surge that managed to fuck my ( zodiac chlorinaor) the driveway gate opener and a computer. Fixed the electrics now. Lesson learnt. Ut yes you need to keep an eye on the salt level thanks for reminding me. Ive got a Monarch handheld digital meter and keep my salt at 3000ppm and not below 2500ppm but all pools seem to be different this is what works for me. The Pumps Emoux and so far so good.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by petercallen View Post
    It confirms what i have read on the Internet over the last 3 months, we have two grandchildren living with us 5 and 6 year olds and i would not use it if i thought it would harm their health
    I am about to vacuum the pool to waste after cleaning the water with Aluminum sulphate and will be adding another 330 grams of copper sulphate which should only bring the amount used to ! PPM
    I did hear thwt aluminium sulphate which is cheap and easily found here doesnt do your pump or plumbing any favours better to just use a flok.

  18. #18
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    While im banging on about pools i might mention that the part that sits on top of the filter pipe and has the job of turning salt into chlorine via electrolysis usuall needs a m8ld acid bath after a month due to the fact it turns a bluey green color. No id3a why but guessing the nam pa pa might have a high concentration of copper in it. Let me know if anyone knows why. I dont have a pic coz just cleaned it

  19. #19
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    The salt water system will produce chlorine - with the same result as any other direct chlorination system. And if this is the only measure for fighting algaes - especially in Thai conditions - it needs quite a strong concentration. And that together with the correct maintaining of the pH in very narrow margin.

    As I mentioned before there are many studies claiming high risk of cancer by chlorine in swimming pool water. And that especially very highly likely for small kids and for people with asthma problems. None of this studies will be publicized and recognized by the strong pool industry.

    Of course the chlorine is very helpful for protection against bad bacterias (the good bacterias are OK ). However, for that sanitation, it does not need such high concentration - daily permnently maintained - like for the algae fighting that we can provide by other means - not so harmful - and much cheaper and easy to use.

  20. #20
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    ^^electrode, clean mine about every three months - you just reminded me, its about four months!

  21. #21
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    Hope yo don't plan on swimming in your pool - copper is a nasty carcinogen.

    Change to a salt system - you will never regret it and it's a lot less hassle. Also, you have an unlying problem with your pool if this is always happening. Have you back washed your filter recently?
    Originally Posted by bsnub "No wonder I drive a tesla"

  22. #22
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    I can see that there are a lot of people way more knowledgeable about pools than me. I would appreciate some advice about changing to a salt water system.

    We had a Desjoyaux pool installed while we were building the house in 2006/2007. I was reluctant at first to go with this company since they use such a unique filtration system, but 12 years later I have no regrets and the pool has been problem free.

    Desjoyaux uses a system with no external plumbing (apart from to top up with fresh water). One filter/pump unit basically bolts to the side of the pool, similar to an aquarium. This unit is basically a strong pump that sucks in water through a skimmer box and filter bag and then expels the water under pressure to maintain circulation. You add chlorine tabs to the pool by dropping them in the skimmer box and the chlorine is then distributed around the pool. I used to mess with pH plus and minus but have pretty much ignored pH levels for years and find that a couple of 200mg tabs of chlorine a week keeps the water clear so long as I keep the water pump on for at least 10 or so hours a day (its on a timer). The only problems with algae are after heavy rainfall, presumably due to dilution of the chlorine level. There is no backwashing etc. Just take the bag out every few days and clean it with a hose.

    I was hoping to change to a salt system to minimise chlorine use (for health reasons) but I am sure after my wife talked to Desjoyaux a while ago they advised that a new filter/pump unit would be necessary (although as usual I'm never sure if there has a breakdown in translation along the way). I didn't pursue it at the time but am hoping to when I return home after this work trip. I thought that changing to a salt water system was a case of simply loading the water with salt, but the comments above indicate there is much more involved than that.

    I've dug out a few photos from way back when everything was pristine to show the set-up. Any advice regarding salt water conversion would be great.





    A close up of the workings of the filter/pump unit. The skimmer box with chlorine tabs in has been taken out.



    The filter bag getting a clean.



    As an aside, as I said I was reluctant to go with this type of pool, but what appealed was the use of a liner instead of tiles. When I looked at pools local builders had installed the finishing was terrible with missing tiles and loose grout common with even recent constructions. And I'd heard horror stories about plumbing leaks, use of non stainless steel for fittings, etc etc. After 12 years our liner is slightly stained and with the occasional patch of blistering where the liner is coming way from the concrete, but nothing major. The water quality seems to be maintained easily with this system and at least from our experience it has been problem free.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Airportwo View Post
    you don't need to change pump or filter system
    I retract my statement! never seen a system like that before, great design, compact non intrusive, easy to install, no need for a pump house - which is an issue for installing chlorine cell!!!
    You have to run a lot more hours than I do, I run mine 4 hours a day, but can't knock the design, maybe someone will have an idea?

  24. #24
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    Maybe check this out. A friend in Oz has a similar version so he tells me but I havent seen the set up.

    Water Treatment for Pools, Spas, Decorative Water Features

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by pseudolus View Post
    Hope yo don't plan on swimming in your pool - copper is a nasty carcinogen.

    Change to a salt system - you will never regret it and it's a lot less hassle. Also, you have an unlying problem with your pool if this is always happening. Have you back washed your filter recently?
    Perhaps you should read what I have written before and the reasons with links to that.
    Any link to your statement? (unless it is from the strong pool industry lobby that hates the cheap and effective treatment by copper sulphate - not by the "copper")

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