generate chlorine overnight or during the day

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  • Last Post 01 August 2023
smallpool posted this 31 July 2023

I really am bewildered by this concept that chlorine added/generated during the daylight can disappear virtually immediately?  Does this mean we should be running the SWG mostly at night?  If this is the case then my pool pump will be running virtually non-stop all summer.  Because if i want my pool heater to run i start my pump early in the morning so by noon the pool is up to temp.  I always thought running the heater overnight was a waste when temps are lower.  I have a heat pump.  the ambient heat makes a massive difference on the energy needed to warm the water.  if i run the heater on while 10, 15 degrees warmer during the day vs overnight the water it heats the pool faster.  Now, back to chlorine.  If i run my pump overnight for the SWG to work,  then i run the pump during the day to get the pool hated, my pump is never really ever off then.

so i'm bewildered.. should we be generating chlorine during sunlight or overnight?    (yes i strive to have my CYA at the correct level).

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InyoRich posted this 01 August 2023

That's a good question - and I'm sure there are a few opinions out there, but here is mine.  :-)

I like generating chlorine during the day. If your stabilizer level is where it should be (and you have the correct-sized saltwater chlorine generator), you will easily generate enough chlorine to sanitize the pool as well as replenish what the sun might eat away.  It helps ensure a more stable hour-to-hour level of sanitizer.

If you only run it at night then there will be large swings in chlorine level.  It would be relatively high in the morning and lower towards the end of the day.  Maintaining a stable level of sanitizer helps keep algae at bay.

As for heating, be sure to use a solar blanket at night to help keep the heat in and, if the appearance or the logistics of a solar cover aren't for you, consider something like a liquid solar blanket. They work pretty well as long as you keep adding the recommended amount weekly.

smallpool posted this 01 August 2023

in June and September i use a solar cover/blanket when it gets chillier in the northeast at night.   I dont keep it on a rail/roller they are too ugly.  to make the cover manageable for one person to take off and on i have it cut into 3 pieces.  It still is challenging for one person to take it off and fold it neatly when its not needed.  what i'm really looking for is just the blanket part i have no interest in the solar heating "bubbles" part.  i was thinking about the air filled square things that look like rafts but i would need like a dozen of them and they woul be stacked 10 feet tall when not in the pool.  so i'm on a quest to find a light weight plastic "blanket" that i would use more often at night.

InyoRich posted this 01 August 2023

I completely understand!  Much of the heat loss in a pool comes from evaporative cooling overnight - it might be worth it to try to use a lightweight sheet of clear plastic (something like a plastic drop cloth) from your local home center and see how it does.  It may not be quite as good as a solar blanket, but it might be good enough (and it would be inexpensive). 

I always worry about safety with solar covers, since, if a person gets in the pool and under one of them while the cover is on the pool, they could suffocate.  Be sure to keep kids and pets away from the pool whenever there is a cover on it.  

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