Category Archives: Calcium deposits removal

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Why and How to Remove Limescale From Pool Heater and Swimming Pool

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Calcium deposits are formed on surfaces that touch hard water. Even though these deposits occur naturally, they can cost you a lot of money if you do not eliminate them. Calcium deposits can cause a water heater to increase fuel use by 40 percent or more. It is beneficial to observe these deposits and withdrawals when possible.

Bird's Eye View of a House with Swimming Pool

Measure the amount of lime in swimming pool water

Measuring the level of lime in the water in your swimming pool is in fact the same as measuring the hardness of the water, always given in TH (hydrometric strength). Very easily carried out thanks to bands with colorimetric indicators, this test will make it possible to determine the concentration of calcium and magnesium carbonate (and therefore of limestone) in the water in our basin.

Generally speaking, it is estimated that the ideal TH for swimming pool water should be between 10 ° f and 20 ° f. Beyond 20 ° f, the east is said to be hard. And above 25 ° f, it is considered that its lime concentration is too high: it must therefore be treated with an anti-lime product.

Why is having lime in your swimming pool a problem?

If pool owners hunt limestone like this, it’s not for nothing. Having excess lime in your swimming pool can indeed be the cause of various problems.

First of all, at the level of the interior of the basin. Because the more our pool is loaded with limestone, the more “chance” we have of seeing it build up from the inside. 

And this as well at the level of the waterline as at the level of the walls and the bottom (especially if one has opted for a swimming pool liner as a coating). And a scaled pool is a pool whose water will be cloudy, and whose walls will be covered with gray or whitish deposits.

Stains which, in addition to being unsightly, will promote the appearance of ‘impurities and algae development. Without forgetting the possible inconvenience for swimmers: possible irritation of the skin and eyes.

But that’s not all: having too much lime can also be dangerous for the filtration system of the swimming pool. Indeed, when there is too much lime in our water, it will simply build up scale and prevent the proper functioning of the swimming pool filter.

Instructions to remove large calcium deposits from water heater

  1. Drain all water from the water heater tank.
  2. Remove the drain valve. With a wrench, unscrew the valve.
  3. Insert a long, narrow brush through space from which you have removed the drain valve. Rub each inside surface of the bottom of the tank with the brush.
  4. Reinstall the drain valve. Apply Teflon tape on the outside of the valve to prevent leaks.
  5. Open the drain valve and attach a garden hose to it.
  6. Open the water supply through the hose and in the water heater. Leave on for 15 to 20 seconds and then turn it off.
  7. Let all the water drain out of the tank.
  8. Repeat this filling and draining process until the water draining from the stove is clear.

How to prevent limescale in the swimming pool

If you live in an area where the water is hard (TH greater than 20), the limestone will represent a real danger for our pool and our equipment. To avoid having to change our liner or completely empty our pool to scrub the limestone from the walls, it is better to act upstream.

To do this, we can:

  • Buy a lime stabilizer from a pool equipment store to prevent lime deposits in the pool.
  • Check that the pool water is not too hot, as a high temperature favors the formation of scale.
  • Carry out at least 3 anti-limescale treatments per year. The first to commissioning the pool, the next in mid-season, and finally the last before putting the pool in winter. Obviously, if our pool shows signs of scaling outside of these 3 periods, we apply an anti-limescale treatment and we rub the walls well.

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How to Use Water from Wells for Your Pool and Avoid Calcium Deposit Build Up

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When you want to install a salt chlorinator in a pool with well water, we recommend that you empty it and fill it with water from the water supply grid.

What are the drawbacks of well water

The reason is that lime and other minerals often cause problems in the chlorinator electrode.

During electrolysis, lime and other elements precipitate and end up being embedded in the plates of the chlorinator cell.

The performance of the electrode decreases, because the plates are electrically isolated, due to the layer of lime, which acts as an insulator.
To clean the electrode plates, the electrode must be immersed in acid, which also attacks metal.

After many washes, the electrode ends up having serious corrosion problems.

In addition, there are other salts and metals present in well water that cause other problems, both due to the sediments they cause and due to the electrochemical effects that are produced.

Lime stains in the pool

If you have ever noticed, you will have seen that there is a white line on the walls, at the height of the surface. This is caused by lime deposits.

In pools with well water, these lime deposits form in a short time, and if they are not removed, the layer becomes thicker and difficult to clean.
Another problem is the roughness that is noticeable on the walls, when passing the hand the touch is rough.

Over time, this texture favors the accumulation of dirt and makes cleaning more difficult.

In addition, if you apply acid to dilute the lime, you are also diluting the cement in the joints, damaging the lining, until you have to empty the pool to repair it.

How to use well water for the pool

On many occasions, especially in pools installed in rural areas, there is no access to running water, so there is no choice but to use well water to fill the pool.

Well, I have a trick to remove lime from the pool with well water.

Well water treatment

This trick is not for everyone. It is not difficult to apply, but you have to be careful to follow the steps correctly.

If the pool is already affected by the remains of lime, you should lower the pH as much as possible, adding a lot of acid, or liquid pH-.

With a pH lower than 6, the lime will start to thin, but so will the cement joints.

It is VERY IMPORTANT that no one takes a bath during the process. The acidity of the water will be very aggressive for people.

After a few days in this state, empty the pool completely, clean the surfaces well with acid (better to use a specific liquid or pH reducer based on sulfuric acid, because hydrochloric acid or sulfonate emits a lot of vapors).
Finally, you will have to re-grout (apply Borada or seal with cement) all the joints.

As you can see, it is slow and hard work, and it is better to do it out of season, to avoid the effects of heat on the empty pool.

With the pool empty, the next step is filling (you probably already guessed that).

Start filling it by adding shock bleach.

The well water contains a lot of organic matter, is very “alive”, and then the plant matter, such as algae, begin to react to the light of the sun. Water can go bad in a matter of hours. Sometimes the same water is already green. Don’t worry about adding more chlorine than necessary, while no one takes a bath.

How to use well water for your pool

Now comes the secret.

Add flocculant to the water. Yes, it’s that easy, but wait, this is just the beginning.

The flocculant causes all elements other than water to stick together, forming solid “flakes” (flocs) that settle to the bottom of the pool or remain stuck in the sand filter.

Be very careful not to overdo the dose of flocculant, because the sand can stick, and you will have to replace it.

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You will have to do sand washes every few hours so that the sediment is expelled.

These remains will include lime, algae, metals, and other elements.
The water will be practically pure. You will also have to help by sweeping the bottom so that the dirt does not stay there.

You can increase the effectiveness by adding a layer of diatomaceous earth, or diatomaceous sand over the filter sand, to retain a greater amount of debris.

Anyway, think that diatomite is difficult to find and somewhat expensive, so it is not necessary to use it unless you want to do a cleaning worthy of an operating room.

Most of it will go down the drain when doing a sand wash, so this is disposable.

The process time will depend on the type of water you are treating, so you will have to experiment and observe.

You can also repeat the process after a few days. However, it is better to do it before adding salt, in salt chlorination systems.

Prevent stains on the pool tile

I am not a fan of adding chemicals to the water, so once the pool is filled with purified water, I would try to avoid adding other products. For that, it is important that the chlorine level and the pH are perfect. There is nothing else to do.

When adding water, after washing, or simply to compensate for evaporation, we must bear in mind that we have also added lime, so we can repeat the process from time to time.

It should be done as a shock treatment. We do not recommend using maintenance flocculant, because it is still a chemical product which in large quantities is unhealthy, as you can see in this post.

If you’ve done enough washes to remove most of the lime, you’ll see that the water is crystal clear and the walls shiny.

Run your hand over the walls periodically, to make sure that the touch is smooth (but not slippery, which would be a sign of algae formation).
If you notice that they become rough, you should lower the pH a little and do another anti-limescale treatment.

Try to have these treatments done on the days that the pool is not used, to avoid exposure to bathers, especially with low pH.

Use of anti-scale products for swimming pools

There are products that keep lime in suspension, so they don’t really remove it, they just keep it from sticking to the walls.

This is an ineffective solution because it forces you to continually add chemical products, with the risks that they entail, and it also does not completely prevent lime from becoming embedded in the chlorinator electrodes.

The flocculant and sand wash trick works better, because you’re actually getting a lot of the lime out of the pool.

Other options to reduce pool limescale

In facilities with intensive use, such as spas and hotels, a tank can be installed to flocculate the water before adding it to the pool. In addition, filters or osmosis systems can be installed, which can purify the water, leaving it almost as if it were distilled.

These systems are not justified in domestic swimming pools, because with good flocculation the water quality is already very good.


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Is Calcium Building Up On the Waterline of Your Pool?

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Lime stains in pool

A common issue that every pool owner will encounter at some point down the road would be calcium buildup in the area around the pool. Calcium buildup can cause your pool to look dated and aged. You spend tens and thousands on a new pool why not just keep it that way? We see so many pools in which the owner didn’t control it! But not everyone knows until it happens to them!

The waterline is the usual residue point

The waterline is the most common area for calcium and lime to build up. It’s very important to address it at first sight so it can’t become a big deal because as these build up it causes damage to your pool whether you see it or not. It gets in the pool filters that are designed for soft objects, not hard calcium. See how this can be a potential issue? Another common thing that will happen if it is left untreated for too long is that it will continue to damage the plaster and grow. This will grow anyplace near the pool that is constantly wet. Now that leaves you with 2 problems to fix because the first wasn’t addressed when it should have been!

Is calcium deposits irritating your eyes?

A lot of people enjoy swimming with their eyes open and not with goggles. When it gets to a certain point calcium deposit can start to just appear in the pool. This leaves the swimmers at risk of opening their eyes underwater. Another thing is that it leaves the pool uncomfortable. Leaving particles in the pool and making it uncomfortable for swimmers, causing debris to get into the eyes

Getting rid of calcium deposits

You can very easily take care of this and save yourself some money by grabbing yourself some toothpaste, baking soda, and vinegar. Using knees together and scraping off the calcium deposits can be much help. Another thing you can do is clean it with muriatic acid. This is a lot more powerful and should be handled with extreme caution. You can pick up muriatic acid at just about any pool store. But before you do any of this, contact your local pool store and tell them your situation. See if they can offer any advice on what would best help you in the end.

Let’s help you get rid of calcium deposits

You don’t have to expose yourself to danger and break your back trying to get rid of calcium deposits. These are extremely difficult deposits to clean from your pool waterline. Let’s step in with our specialized tools, equipment, and years of experience to get rid of this problem for you easily.

If you’re ever wondering about how to get your pool tiles cleaned, repaired, or replaced you found the right place. Do you want to bring the old life back to your pool? Or pool makeover, rehab special is what you need! Give us a call today for any questions regarding your pool or the services we offer! Call us at 626-275-8959! Serving all of Covina Ca!


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How to Clean the Tough Heavy Calcium Deposits in Your Pool

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Calcium deposits, or efflorescence, form when excess moisture inside cement rises to the surface. These white powder deposits are common in basement walls, floors, and other cement surfaces.

Although efflorescence is not harmful to cement, excessive amounts of it can cause fungal or insect problems. Once the calcium deposits harden, they are virtually impossible to remove without acid solutions.

Stronger acids are required for the heavier calcium deposits.

Instructions

  1. Dress appropriately for security purposes. Wear protective clothing, goggles, acid-resistant gloves, and a mask equipped with an acid-grade filter.
  2. Set a portable fan nearby and open the windows to provide adequate air circulation. Fill a spray bottle with acetic acid.
  3. Spray the acetic acid generously on the calcium deposits. Allow the acid to penetrate the cement for the recommended amount of time. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the product label.
  4. Scrub the cement with a hard bristle brush to dissolve the calcium deposits. Continue to apply acetic acid and scrub the cement until all calcium deposits are removed.
  5. Sprinkle baking soda generously over clean cement to neutralize the acid. While the acid neutralizes, fill a plastic bucket with water.6 Clean the affected surfaces promptly to restore the appearance of the cement and prevent future problems. To do this, cement thoroughly rinsed with water, using a coarse sponge. Allow the cement to air dry.

Tips and warnings

  • You can substitute hydrochloric acid for acetic acid. However, never use hydrochloric acid inside or mix it with any chemical.
  • Be very careful when using acetic acid; It is highly corrosive to the skin.

Cleaning with vinegar

Baking soda, borax, dish soap, toothpaste, and vinegar can be used in much the same way to clean calcium deposits, so you can use most of the information related to the vinegar and apply it also to cleaning agents.

What you need for cleaning with vinegar:

  • A cleaning brush. With soft bristles, not metallic.
  • A bottle of spray.
  • Vinegar, a 5% solution.

Once you have these items, you can start cleaning.

  1. The first step is to stop all use of the pool until a water test can be performed. If the test reveals that the levels are within range, you can use a stain remover to remove deposits from the waterline. If the pH, alkalinity or calcium levels are too high, they should be reduced before using a scale and scale cleaner.
  2. It is recommended to start first by lowering the hardness of the water. The hardness can only be lowered by partially draining and then filling the pool. Your pool needs a hardness level of 200 ppm to 400 ppm. A level of hardness above 400 ppm can lead to scale formation on the surface of the pool and equipment and can also cause cloudy water.
  3. Once the pool has drained, and filled again, check that the hardness is within range. If it is not, you must repeat step 2 until you normalize the hardness. Only in that case can you adjust the alkalinity. You should retest before doing so because the alkalinity should be lower than before. To reduce alkalinity, you can use dry acid or muriatic acid. The necessary amount of any of the chemical products will vary according to the size and volume of the pool and the reading of alkalinity.
  4. Once the alkalinity is within the range, the pH can be adjusted. For this, a negative pH is used, in case of a high pH. Once the pH is balanced, we can move on to the final step.
  5. The final step will be to use the vinegar. Before adding the product, (following the package instructions), make sure you have a pool brush handy to brush the walls as needed. There are no special tricks. You can put the vinegar in the bottle and spray the solution on the calcium deposits or simply pour it from your own bottle, then use the brush to scrub.

These types of cleaners tend to work quite well if you detect and solve the problem from the beginning, and of course, you should use them fairly regularly to avoid accumulation.

If you do all these steps, and still have lime deposits that are difficult to remove, try the following.

Cleaning with muriatic acid

With the vinegar and the other mild cleansers that we have already mentioned, you can enter the pool while you are cleaning. With muriatic acid, however, this is not recommended.

Muriatic acid is more powerful and more dangerous when handling. You can find this chemical in a home improvement store or pool supply store.

What you need for cleaning with muriatic acid:

  • Muriatic acid container.
  • Safety glasses.
  • Rubber gloves.
  • Respirator.
  • Plastic cube.
  • Measuring cup of plastic.
  • Plastic spoon
  • Plastic spray bottle.
  • Marker.
  • Non-abrasive scourer

This list of materials is enough for you to realize that this goes beyond the maintenance of the pool for beginners. We want to remind you that muriatic acid is dangerous.

  1. Put on goggles, gloves, and the respirator. Then head outside with all your ingredients to start mixing. Absolutely do not attempt to mix in a closed area.
  2. Fill your bucket with four liters of water. Pour 230 grams of muriatic acid with the measuring cup slowly into the water. Always pour the acid in the water instead of the other way round, as the acid is more likely to splash. Another thing to keep in mind is that you should pour slowly since this mixture produces heat.
  3. With the plastic spoon, mix the water and the acid. Again, do it slowly, because you do not want it to boil.
  4. Carefully fill the plastic bottle with a mixture of water and acid.
  5. Use the marker to label the measuring cup, spoon and spray bottle with “Muriatic acid”. Do not try to use the chemical for anything else. If you are worried that this may happen, leave the bottle aside for proper disposal.
  6. You should always stay out of the pool, use the spray bottle to spray the waterline of the pool and rub with the non-abrasive scouring pad.

Get in touch with your local pool supply company or with the municipality to learn how to get rid of any unused muriatic acid. Do not simply discard it or pour it down the drain.

Because muriatic acid is much stronger than vinegar or other cleaning products mentioned above, you can eliminate calcium deposits that are much more advanced. That said, with deposits that have been growing and hardening for a long time, sometimes even muriatic acid is not enough.

If that is your situation, you have a remaining option. Pressure washing.


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