Thursday, April 23, 2015

Hayward AquaNaut, Phoenix and Poolvergnuegen PoolCleaner Suction Side Cleaners

There is no hiding the fact that the AquaNaut and Phoenix are just the Poolvergnuegen in an updated body and color scheme. All of the internal parts are the same as the PoolCleaner "The Next Generation." Hayward purchased that company last year and owns the patents so it is incorporating the design into their own brand and there is nothing wrong with that.

Here is an explanation in a nutshell for you. Hayward Purchased Poolvergnuegen back in January of 2014 or so and in that purchase came all of the patents. Since the PoolCleaner was not a Hayward product it couldn't be offered in the Hayward rebate programs. So they spent a lot of money to design a new body and color schemes for the AquaNaut and Phoenix and made them Hayward products. So essentially all three are the same cleaner, PoolCleaner "Next Generation," AqauNaut and Phoenix.

So why purchase the AquaNaut/Phoenix vs the Poolvergnuegen?

The answer is Rebates. The PoolCleaner still carries the Poolvergnuegen name so Hayward could not add it to it's rebate programs. Right now both the Phoenix and AquaNaut come with a $100 rebate offer good until September 6th 2015.

All three come with a two year warranty.

The Aqaunaut and the Phoenix have a better color scheme then the PoolCleaner and the body is well crafted - they both just look great.

I think the AqauNaut/Phoenix will have a wider appeal then the PoolCleaner with the Hayward brand behind it and it will be marketed to consumers unfamiliar with the Poolvergnuegen brand. Hayward isn't trying to fool anyone, they are just trying to promote a cleaner design that is superior to all others on the market.

Make no mistakes all three are great cleaners. The parts are super long lasting and I can almost bet that you will get at least 5 years before needing to change any parts - except the rubber tires that wear out every 18 months or so. It is that well engineered. I've got over 16 Poolvergnuegens on my route some over 6 years old and working fine. I never worry about getting to one of those accounts and finding the cleaner broken down - it just doesn't happen.

The V-flex turbine is designed to pick up large debris and the gearing prevents the cleaner from getting stuck in the step areas or a corner in your pool. Plus the hump on the tire keeps it off main drains that tend to trap other cleaners.

So what you are getting is a durable cleaner that works great with proven engineering. A good purchase and a cleaner I highly recommend to all of my customers on my pool route.


This is the updated version of the PoolCleaner that was in the works when Hayward purchased the cleaner. Currently it doesn't ship with the three suction inlets but I think they will very soon. It is the standard white color scheme and white hoses although there is also a Limited Edition with a darker body and hoses available. There are no rebates but the online price is the lowest of the three. A good solid choice.


The Hayward Phoenix Suction side cleaner is the retail only version of the three cleaners. You can find it at Leslie's pool supply right now for $329.00 after the $100 rebate. The color scheme is pretty sharp and of the three I like it the best.
The main difference from the PoolCleaner is the handle on top, the hubcaps on the wheels and of course as mentioned the color of the cleaner and the hoses. The Phoenix cannot be purchased online and is available only at retail pool stores.


The AquaNaut is the E-commerce version of the three. You can find it online at various websites. The color scheme is different then the Phoenix and it comes with the dark hoses. If you have a colored pool it will look really sharp in it.

Whichever of the three you chose you will be happy. They are the best suction side cleaners on the market and all three also come with a 4x model. The four wheel models are made for larger pools and deeper pools (9 ft or more), They also come with two extra hoses. Basically the gearing is set in the 4x models to turn at a longer interval so it covers more distance consistently.

If you are interested in learning more or purchasing one of the three you can visit my website where I I have links to!top-automatic-pool-cleaners-of-2015/ccs6

For the Phoenix you can visit Leslie's pools:

Friday, April 17, 2015

Bio-Active Cyanuric Acid Reducer

Bio-Active Cyanuric Acid Reducer - BiOWiSH Technologies is the first of it's kind. For years everyone has been trying to come up with a chemical that would destroy high CYA levels. Turns out it isn't a chemical that will do it but a microorganism.

With a huge drought in the Southwest and particularly California, draining your pool partially is not an option. So this product couldn't have hit the market at a better time.

This video above is a basic overview of the product.

To learn more you can go to their website:

I talked to their sales rep extensively and here are some finer points of the Bio-Active.

If the parameters are in line you will get good results - the minimum results ares 40-60 ppm in a pool of 25,000 gallons with a CYA level of 150 ppm. He states that if it is in the 200-250 ppm range the Bio-Active will work better and reduce the levels more. Contrary to that if the levels are 80 ppm you will only see a slight reduction.

Since the chlorine will get stronger as the CYA level drops there is no danger of burning off all the cyanuric acid in the pool - as the chlorine gets stronger it destroys the Bio-Active reducer. So it will level off before the CYA drops below 40 ppm. If there is no chlorine in the pool it could technically zero out the CYA level.

The most important part is to start with an accurate CYA level - I will cover that more in the application video below.

So you don't need to read much further the Cyanuric Reducer works.

This test pool went from 200 ppm down to 140 ppm in 48 hours. I tested the pool 24 hours later also and got 160 ppm that day. But 48 hours later there is a marked difference. I knew it right away when I started the turbidity test - the initial test filled to the 100 ppm mark rapidly. I used the dilution test 1 part pool water 1  part tap water and multiplied the number by 2.

I did about 5 test 24 hours later and consistently got 80 ppm which doubled is 160 ppm. on the 48 hour testing I did the test 3 times and got consistently 70 ppm which doubled is 140 ppm.

I've done CYA testing a lot and am pretty good at making sure the black dot is completely covered - give or take for slight error. that is why I do the testing multiple times.

But the bottom line is that the Bio-Active does appear to work at reducing the CYA levels down. After 7 days I am sue it will be down even more but initially that is an impressive drop considering the only other CYA reducer marketed only dropped the level down 10 ppm, if that, with a complete bottle (Meletrine).

So this is a real game changer for all of those who due to drought or water restrictions couldn't just drain down the pool to reduce the CYA level.

The CYA level should continue to drop in this test pool and I will post results after the 10 day mark. For some it will be less expensive to add 16 oz. or even 24 oz. vs draining the pool down depending on water cost in your area and water restrictions.

Plus once the CYA level is down you will spend less on shocking and chemicals in the long run so the price is worth it.

Speaking on the price as it seems rather high but they have been working on this product since 2009 and the R&D cost were very high. Plus making the microorganism mix itself is an expensive process.

Test Results from six  pools:

Here are my test results for the Bio-Active Cyanuric Acid Reducer in six test pools on my pool route. The results did vary from pool to pool but in each pool there was a measurable drop in the Cyanuric Acid levels. 

I think the main thing that effects the products effectiveness are the chlorine, pH levels and water temperature. I think if you add the product to a pool with the ideal levels you will get good result.

The ideal range is chlorine: 2.0-3.0 ppm
pH: 7.2-7.8
Water Temp: Above 65 degrees

One thing that could make it seem as if the product is not working is getting inaccurate starting CYA levels. The Turbidity test is the best but it is a very subjective test. I like using test strips also to confirm the CYA levels, although the reading is just a ballpark estimate the color does indicate if your Turbidity test is in line. As long as the pH in the pool is between 7.2 and 7.8 the test strips will record an accurate CYA level within the range of the color seen.

Pool store testing is also good if the tester is skilled as most use an electronic tester which is less subjective. 

Bottom line is that the product does work, although I couldn't duplicate the manufacturers numbers all the pools experienced a drop in the Cyanuric Acid levels. 

Adding the product will be less expensive in most cases then draining the pool down and if you need to add two 8 oz. bags to achieve good results you are still saving money overall.

Once you lower your CYA down I suggest switching over to the BBB Method and forgo the Tablets. This method is detailed in the video below:

Saturday, April 11, 2015

SweepEase® AquaDynamic 18" Pool Brush

I saw the SweepEase being demonstrated at a pool show and was intrigued by the design. The Patented shape uses water to push it to the wall and floor creating more pressure without you physically exerting the force. 5-10 lbs more according to the manufacturer.

The manufacturer plays up the one handed brushing of the pool which is nice but I really like the fact that when you use two hands the force created by this brush is increased dramatically. You almost get pulled into the pool - so be careful. You can also use one hand and brush the pool effectively.

The brush is well made and finished well. I like the overall shape as it makes brushing in the corners easy.

Both brushes use Polypropylene which is superior to Nylon in many ways. Polypropylene is chemical and UV resistant, has more flexibility and is more durable than nylon.

They make two models, one for plaster and Pebble Tec pool surfaces with wire bristles inserted among the Poly bristles:

SweepEase 100% POLY BRISTLE Brush AquaDynamic Pool Brush, 18-Inch

For a Fiberglass and Vinyl pool they make a complete Poly Bristle brush:

SweepEase 100% POLY BRISTLE Brush AquaDynamic Pool Brush, 18-Inch

An excellent choice for a pool brush for both the homeowner and a pool service tech.
Well balanced, durable and the extra force it creates is a definite  plus. I've been using it on my pool route now for three weeks and just love the brush. I like how it gets into tight corners and the extra power it produced to push debris off of the walls and floors. And the shape allows for easy carrying and use.

I've dropped it several times and banged it against pool steps and it is holding up just fine. If you are looking for a durable and highly effective pool brush this one is it.

You can visit the manufacturers website to learn more:

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

What Causes Algae in a Pool?

It is a bit of circular logic but if you keep your pool balanced you won't develop algae and it won't be a problem for you.

But we all get busy and forget to check on the pool or the gardeners decide to blow everything from the deck into the pool. Maybe your pump basket gets clogged and you don't notice for a few days. Or you leave your pool in spa mode and the pool sits not circulating for a week. In an ideal world simply keeping your pool balanced would solve a lot of issues, but stuff happens.

So here are some common causes of algae blooming in your pool, ways to treat it and a preventative algae treatment you can use all season long.

There are of course other ways to prevent algae growth if you would like to try them. Here are some low cost preventative things you can do:

Adding Borates to your pool to achieve 30 ppm- 50 ppm helps to inhibit algae growth.
Keeping your pH at 7.2-7.4 is also effective as the chlorine will be more effective but be used up quicker.
Use a PolyQuat 60 Algaecide but it is about the same cost as "No Mor Problems" - which is a better choice.

Here are some higher cost ideas:
Invest in a good automatic cleaner to pick up the organic debris and dirt all week long vs you vacuuming once a week.
Invest in a Ultra Violet UV system - expensive but effective if you have ever used UV in an aquarium or pond - you know it works.
Ozone systems also inhibit algae growth but are also expensive - there effectiveness is also debatable.

So I included using YellowTreat and No Mor Problems as effective ways to treat algae and an effective way to prevent algae growth.

You can learn more about their products on their website:

I also have a webpage dedicated to algae treatment:!green-pool-and-algae-problems/cc3e

And a YouTube Playlist:
Algae Removal & Pool Chemistry:

On my pool route I use Sodium Bromide as my main source of algae treatment. It is highly effective as Bromine is well documented to kill algae. Using a maintenance dose of Sodium Bromide also inhibits algae growth and No Mor Problems has been specially formulated for that purpose.

Green Pool Clean Up in One Day

Basically a green pool clean-up is a process as I detail in all three videos. If you don't follow the process and just dump chlorine and algaecide in it probably won't work.

From my experience the initial chemical reading is not a factor - unless the pool is really low on Conditioner - below 30 ppm. It doesn't matter what  the initial pH or Alkalinity reading the first day - you are looking at a swamp with mosquito larvae growing in it - it is not a pool in any sense except for the equipment.

So the first step is to make sure the pump is working - this pool had the pump down for  6 months  - finally got a used pump installed.

Circulation is critical so the filter needs to be cleaned. A Cartridge filter like this one needs to be taken apart and cleaned - so does a DE filter. Sand filters are a pain as they can only be backwashed so the process will be longer with that filter type.

Then we bomb out the pool. I like 30 ppm of chlorine -Shock and Awe. Liquid Chlorine or Clorox bleach works best. You can use shock too.

To find out how much chlorine to add to get 30 ppm in your pool size go to this website and plug in your numbers.

Chances are all the chlorine you add will be gone in 24 hours as it works hard to destroy the algae - the organic material in the algae will then turn the pool a milky blue. You will need to raise the chlorine again to at least 10 ppm and run the pool - initially 24 hours or 48 hours the first day or two - then 12 hours until it clears.

If you can check the chlorine every few hours to make sure you have some residual. Check and add chlorine everyday until the water clears - It should clear within a week - larger pools a little longer.

On the second day you will need to clean or backwash the filter again. Sometimes three or four times depending on the filter size and how swampy the pool was. Pool size is a factor too. This pool is over 30,000 gallons so the results will be slower then in a 10,000 gallon pool.

Even if you don't use Tri-chlor tablets it is a good idea to use some during this process. They will help keep the residual chlorine up until the pool clears. Then you can stop using them - 4-6 tablets will add some CYA to the pool but not a huge amount.

If your CYA is over 150 you can still do this process - you will have to drain down 2-4 ft of water after to reduce the CYA levels. Note that it is illegal in California to drain a green pool so do this after the pool is blue again. There is a new CYA Reducer on the market and I will be doing a video on it soon. It will take your CYA levels from 150 ppm down to 40 ppm with just 8 oz of the product (In 20,000 gallons of water).

High CYA levels during this process will slow down the results but not dramatically.

An Algaecide is necessary in my opinion although some disagree. I find that it accelerates the process and will help keep the algae from returning if the pool zeros out during the process. I've tried cleaning green pools with just liquid chlorine and the process is much longer and harder. Think of an algaecide as a chlorine enhancer - it will make the process easier for you.

Swamp Treat by United Chemicals is the most powerful algaecide on the market. Just  1 lbs is enough for 20,000 gallons of water. It is a Sodium Bromide based formula with other ingredients that enhance the Sodium Bromide and make is Super effective. The bottle seems deceiving as it is only half full - but it is sold by weight and not volume - powerful stuff.

Here are some links to other products seen in this video:
Multi-Tork Filter Socket Tool - For Faster Filter Cleaning:
Aqua Comb Spa Filter Cartridge Spray Cleaner Tool (Pet Aqua Comb):
SweepEase® AquaDynamic 18" Pool Brush – Review:

To learn more about swamp treat:

To order Swamp Treat:!green-pool-and-algae-problems/cc3e

If you have any questions during your process please post them and I will answer them for you. Green pools are a specialty of mine and I enjoy turning them around.

Here are my other two green pool videos: