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BioGuard Optimizer Plus for Pools, further prevents algae AND is a fantastic layer of a water balance buffer for better pH & Total Alkalinity. Not only that but water feels even softer!

NaturCare Enzymatic Cleaner, Clarifier & Phosphate Remover for Pools, Spas & Hot tubs. Pristine Pure® is the best in natural pool care. NaturCare is a proprietary blend of "Pure Batch" biodegradable, environmentally-friendly, plant-based enzymes designed to work with all swimming pool water treatment programs. After bactericide use, NaturCare® naturally breaks down the leftover unfilterable contaminants (organic bioburden, body oils, suntan lotions, cosmetics, etc.) in the pool and enhances the effectiveness of the bactericidal process.

AquaFinesse Pool Water Care Tablets for Pools, Spas & Hot tubs. AquaFinesse helps to remove hard to reach or hidden biofilms in pool filter systems, plumbing lines & elsewhere.

Swimming Pools treated with biguanide products such as Soft Swim® & Baquacil have their own set of rules & idiosyncrasies.  HOWEVER, the basic still apply.  Good water balance, keeping up with regular maintenance & following the prescribed methods & chemicals doses performed at the correct intervals.

The biggest difference between biguanides & halogens (chlorine & bromine) is the way the operate.  But first, let's look at their chemical natures.

Chlorine & bromine are both naturally occurring elements.  They have their own atomic weight & space in the periodic table (remember your high school chemistry).

The original non-chlorine way to treat swimming pools...


Bromine & chlorine are combined with other elements to make up various chemicals & products that truth be told, we would have a very big problem living without. In residential swimming pools, chlorine tends to be in powder or tablet or stick form. Some people still use liquid.  Bromine is typically available as a tablet.

Biguanides on the other hand are not basic elements. Biguanides are "long string" polymers with really big names. We call them PHMBs (polyhexamethylbiguanides); even that's a shortened name!  Biguanides (in different formulas) are also used in veterinary (disinfecting) & human medicine (treating type 2 diabetes).  The real difference is how biguanides attack bacteria & algae versus chlorine or bromine.  Here's the difference:

Chlorine & bromine are like bombs or landmines that are in your pool water.  When the chlorine or bromine molecule hits a bacteria or algae cell, it basically blows it up!  It oxidizes the bacteria.  It's gone (as long as there are enough of them to combat the bacteria & algae).  Chlorine & bromine tend to have very low pH values making them "harsh" on skin & hair.

Biguanides on the other hand work like fly paper.  These long string polymers float through the pool water & attach to anything they come in contact with & eventually "strangle" the bad guys.  As that dirty string of polymer gets heavier with more dead stuff attached to it, it becomes large enough to settle on the filter & is filtered out of the water. Biguanides tend to aid making water clearer because they are a kind of water clarifier.  Biguanides are preferred by many people because they are much more gentle on skin & hair because their pH value is almost neutral.

Ideally, SoftSwim or any biguanide pool care system should be used in swimming pools with the following characteristics: Vinyl liner finish, under 20,000 gallons, sand filter system. Biguanides work "best" within these parameters.

With all of that in mind, let's show you how to...

1. Start a Freshly filled pool using Soft Swim or biguanides
2. How to convert a chlorine or bromine pool to Soft Swim or biguanide
3. Starting a Soft Swim or Biguanide pool in the Spring
4. Regular chemical maintenance of a Soft Swim or biguanide pool
5. Vacation proofing your Soft Swim or biguanide pool
6. How to Winterize or Close your Soft Swim or biguanide pool
7. Trouble shooting problems.
8. Water Balance in Soft Swim or Biguanide pools

The SoftSwim Products & what they do...

SoftSwim A Algicide made purposefully for Biguanides; added 2 ounces for every 5,000 gallons Every two weeks; Inhibits & controls the growth of algae
SoftSwim B Bactericide & Sanitizer 1/2 pint (8 oz) for every 5,000 gallons to raise "B" level by 10 ppm, maintain 30 - 50 ppm ONLY as needed, test weekly, top up when under 30 ppm Kills bacteria; prevents spreading of disease through pool water
SoftSwim C "shock" treatment, oxidizing Clarifier 1 gallon for every 10,000 gallons of water. don't skimp Once every 3 weeks or as needed to maintain 20 to 60 ppm Oxidizes body oils, sweat, and other unwanted wastes. Helps clear the water.
SoftSwim Stain Control treats heavy metals - iron, copper, manganese, calcium 1 qt. per 10,000 gallons monthly Prevents staining & interference of metals with Soft Swim System
SoftSwim Filter Cleaner Biguanide specific filter cleaner - all media follow label instructions about every 6 weeks Keeps filter cleaner by removing "spent"  residue

One big problem is that Soft Swim or biguanide pools tend to be so easy to maintain that many, many people figure that they don't need to perform ANY maintenance.  The water looks great so "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." 

That attitude gets many of those same people into trouble with cloudy water and other problems that require time, effort & money to fix. They then blame the product for their lack of care.  We see it constantly. Don't fall into that trap. Follow the doses & instructions & have a great experience!

Starting a Soft Swim® or Biguanide pool in the Spring
Before Adding BioGuard® Soft Swim® B, test the pool water after the filter has circulated for about 12 to 24 hours. Follow normal pool
opening procedures found here.

1 bottle SoftSwim® "C"
PLUS Top SoftSwim® "B" level to 50 ppm
1/2 quart SoftSwim® "A" Algaecide
Plus Top off Optimizer Plus® (5 -10 lb)

10,000 TO 20,000 GALLONS
2 bottles SoftSwim® "C"
PLUS Top SoftSwim® "B" level to 50 ppm
1 quart SoftSwim® "A" Algaecide
Plus Top off Optimizer Plus® (10 - 20 lb)

20,000 TO 30,000 GALLONS
3 bottles SoftSwim® "C"
PLUS Top SoftSwim® "B" level to 50 ppm
1.5 quarts SoftSwim® "A" Algaecide
Plus Top off Optimizer Plus® (15 - 30 lb)

4 bottles SoftSwim® "C"
PLUS Top SoftSwim® "B" level to 50 ppm
2 quarts SoftSwim® "A" Algaecide
Plus Top off Optimizer Plus® (20 - 40 lb)

All Dosages are based on a Normal, Clean Opening. Make Chemical Adjustments as Needed. Don't Skimp!

Regular chemical maintenance of a Soft Swim® or biguanide pool - Soft Swim® Mid-Season Care
1. Clean Filter with Soft Swim® Filter Cleaner.  Filter cleaning should be done about every 6 weeks.  Soft Swim® Filter Cleaner is specifically made to break down the "long string" biguanide molecule.  Typical other filter cleaners are not.

2. Run filter a MINIMUM of 12 hours DAILY. EVERY DAY.  From pool opening to closing.
3. Shock the pool with 1 gallon Soft Swim® C Clarifying Shock per 10,000 gallons or any part of 10,000 gallons about every 3 to 4 weeks.  Add an EXTRA bottle of Soft Swim® "C" if pool has not been Shocked in over 3 weeks. If pool water temperature stays warmer that 85°F, Shock pool every 3 Weeks.

4. Mid-Season: Add 1 bottle of Soft Swim® "C" or half dosage into the skimmer (add very slowly, this may cause the pump to become air-bound; bleed the system of any air; do not run the pump dry) to clean the lines. Use
AquaFinesse Pool Water Care Tablets to loosen & remove build-ups of biofilms within the plumbing lines.
5. Thoroughly BRUSH the pool walls WEEKLY.

6. Remove ladder(s) from pool & clean with BioGuard® Stow Away. Replace in pool after cleaning.

7. Mid-Season: Clean Solar Blanket with
BioGuard® Stow Away to remove early algae & mildew growth.

8. Mid-Season: Double regular Soft Swim® "A" dosage.

9. Maintain Soft Swim® "B" level at 35 to no more than 50 ppm.
10. Test the pool weekly with Soft Swim® Test Strips.

11.  Adjust pH, Total Alkalinity & Calcium Hardness as necessary.  In certain pools (not all but more than just a few), low total alkalinity CAN cause higher consumption of Soft Swim® B.  Click on the Water Balance area for more details.

11a. Consider using additives such as AquaFinesse Pool Water Care Tablets and Naturally Pure Enzyme Cleaner that remove and prevent the biofilms that contribute to Pink Slime & White Water Mold.

12. Bring in a 1 qt. water sample for a complete computerized analysis.


3 Additives to consider to make Pristine Blue even better (click on the pictures for details):