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Thread: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

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    How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Two years ago I bought my house with my first pool. I have high pH, high CYA (pool came that way), massive chlorine consumption, algae, dirt, and leaves in my pool. I know it's my fault, but I feel like I'm constantly working on it. Once in the morning, once after dinner and a good portion of Saturday mornings. I don't know how much more I can take.

    My friend, on the other hand, doesn't have a test kit and just floats two tabs at a time and throws in a pound or two of shock every month and his pool looks great. How does that work? Shouldn't his CYA be through the roof? Wouldn't two pucks of trichlor (~12ppm Cl/wk) be almost worthless in a pool with very high CYA? I attribute all my issues to a domino affect setup by high CYA that I never fixed. Why hasn't his pool spiraled out of control like mine has?
    13,500 gal IG plaster w/ Nautilus FNS DE 36 filter. Unknown original 1985 pump.

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Love your user name! LOL

    So malligator how are you testing your pool?

    Am I reading your post right in seeing that you have high CYA even now?

    I do not know why he is having an easy time of it but if your CYA is high that would explain why you are fighting your pool so much.

    We can make your pool a dream to use instead of a nightmare to fight.

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    kimkats,

    Yes. I still have high CYA. I've been overwhelmed about how to replace the water. I've finally made up my mind that this weekend I'm backwashing out as much water as I can and refilling with my garden hose. I just can't find a better way, but I have got to get rid of that CYA so I can start battling the algae. If I were to try and SLAM my pool right now I'd have to keep it at 59 ppm. That is A LOT of chlorine.
    13,500 gal IG plaster w/ Nautilus FNS DE 36 filter. Unknown original 1985 pump.

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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Maybe his pool is bigger, or leaks unnoticeably with an autofill. Hard to tell, but sounds like you may have some information to share with him later down the road.

    Just to confirm - are you certain about your CYA value? Are you testing yourself? As educated as you seem to be, I figured this is moot but i would be remiss not to ask.
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
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    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Quote Originally Posted by malligator View Post
    kimkats,

    Yes. I still have high CYA. I've been overwhelmed about how to replace the water. I've finally made up my mind that this weekend I'm backwashing out as much water as I can and refilling with my garden hose. I just can't find a better way, but I have got to get rid of that CYA so I can start battling the algae. If I were to try and SLAM my pool right now I'd have to keep it at 59 ppm. That is A LOT of chlorine.
    It's time to bite the bullet and get that CYA down. That's THE reason you're constantly fighting your pool. Drain as much as you feel comfortable with and refill. In your location, the danger is letting the dry plaster not covered with water be exposed to the sun for too long. Cover the pool with a mesh or opaque cover if you have one, use a large tarp or two as an alternative if you can. If the sides are exposed and you cannot cover, I'd suggest setting up a sprinkler to keep the sides wet while draining/refilling. Retest and maybe have to repeat the drain/fill based on your probably SLAM FC.
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    First step--PLEASE get your own test kit. See my siggy for the good ones we all use and love.

    Second step-get a sub pump to drain your pool AFTER you get your test kit to see just how high your CYA really is.

    Third step-keep us updated with you pool!

    HUGS! We will get your cleared up and your pool will be better than your neighbors pool!

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    as a fellow Phoenician, I can reassure you that it doesn't need to be that hard. I am brushing twice a week and spending 5 minutes on chemicals and testing per week. You just need to get started fresh. My dad's had his pool since 1982 and uses pucks and shock and a Kreepy. I don't think he's had a glorified outbreak as long as I can remember. But there is a difference in the water. And he's got weird spots and streaks all over the pool.
    10,500 gal IG, Topaz Pebble, auto-level
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    I have a TF-100 test kit. I've had one for two years. My CYA really is 150-200 (I'm not good at telling when the black dot has actually disappeared). Whatever the exact number is it's really, really high.

    My plan is to start draining the pool as soon as the direct sunlight is off of it and then sit up with it all night while it refills with the garden hose. If I have to I'll do 1-foot drains and refills every evening until the CYA is around 50. I can't deal with this anymore.
    13,500 gal IG plaster w/ Nautilus FNS DE 36 filter. Unknown original 1985 pump.

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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    you have it all correct His will spiral out of control, just like so many that come here every week... When is the question and that depends on how much water displacement is going on... everyone could do the same thing.. Just backwash a 1000 gallons a week and your CYA could maybe stay low enough?? some people go years doing exactly what your talking about and then 1 day the pool turns green and the first thing that is said on this forum is

    "i have used so and so pucks/dichlor/trichlor/shock and my pool just turned green, I dont understand"
    Pool: Intex 16x32 15000 gal, 2 speed 340042, Pentair CC320 Filter, CircuPool SJ45 Salt System, Intermatic PE653RC; Hot Tub: 650 Gal SWG Megachlor
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Quote Originally Posted by malligator View Post
    My friend, on the other hand, doesn't have a test kit and just floats two tabs at a time and throws in a pound or two of shock every month and his pool looks great. How does that work? Shouldn't his CYA be through the roof? Wouldn't two pucks of trichlor (~12ppm Cl/wk) be almost worthless in a pool with very high CYA? I attribute all my issues to a domino affect setup by high CYA that I never fixed. Why hasn't his pool spiraled out of control like mine has?
    First, 2 tabs does not necessarily raise your CYA by 12ppm. It depends on your pool size. Lets take your pool, which you say is 13,500 gallons. For your pool, each tab will raise your CYA 2.5ppm, so two tabs per week will get you 5ppm CYA. However, if your pool was 20,000 gallons, it would only be 1.7ppm per tab, or 3.4ppm per week.

    Your pool might have already had super high CYA when you started, so the damage was there before you ever took control. As was said above, perhaps he has a leak and fills, which allows him to change out some water regularly. Not sure of pool use in Phoenix, but are the pool closed for the winner where they may be partially drained for a period of time?

    I like to use analogies. Lets say that you decided that you wanted to eat a cup of lard every day. Do it for a week, and you are not going to have a heart attack. Do it for a month, and you will still be OK. But at some point your body will revolt. Its the same with tabs and CYA. The story is always the same thing. "Ive added a couple tabs each week to my pool for a couple years, and the water was always perfect and clear. Then all of the sudden it got cloudy, then green. What happened?" I would guess that your friend is just biding his time until his water gets out of control. He might have put in some magic elixirs from the pool store and gotten lucky to hold off the algae for a bit longer, but gotten stuck with a hefty bill.
    IG W/Vinyl Liner Oval 18x40, 21K gal, Oval 3'-8'
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Quote Originally Posted by malligator View Post
    I have a TF-100 test kit. I've had one for two years. My CYA really is 150-200 (I'm not real good at telling when the black dot is really gone). Whatever the exact number is it's really, really high.
    Ya, it is a rough guide imo. If not already, try the test with 50% pool water and 50% tap water and double the result. Or dilute to 25% even. Get the test result into the broader bands and multiply it out from there. Doesn't terribly matter that high tho, since the advise remains the same.

    Quote Originally Posted by malligator View Post
    My plan is to start draining the pool as soon as the direct sunlight is off of it and then sit up with it all night while it refills with the garden hose. If I have to I'll do 1-foot drains and refills every evening until the CYA is around 50. I can't deal with this anymore.
    One big drain, if you can swing it, is much more economical. You'd have to drain it 50% twice to achieve what single 75% drain would do. 25% eight times? Something like that, so on and so forth. 1 foot drops will creep the number down almost imperceptibly, thus take forever and use a lot of water in that time. Speaking from experience, since that's how I started.

    I finally drained ~50% onto my garden to get my CYA from 180 measured to ~110, which is a manageable level in our much milder climate: now keeping FC about 12 as per pool math and I can measure pH accurately again. Hoping to work with rain in the winter to finish the job. If it ever rains again.

    Pool is way clearer now. Totally worth it.

    '66 Ranch w' ~16k plaster kidney: Century Centurion B121 3/4 HP main -> Pac-Fab Mitra MA-100 cartridge filter-> [offline Fabco solar stuff w' dead 303 controller] -> Teledyne Laars XE gas heater -> Century Centurion B668 3/4 HP booster -> Polaris Vac-Sweep 380

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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Yeah, what zoonews said. At 1ft drain increments, you'll be at it for weeks and spend several pools worth of water in the process.

    What might work for you is the tarp barrier method ( there's gotta be a name for it, but I don't know what). Basically you put a huge piece of visqueen (or ldpe sheet, or waterproof tarp, or whatever you can get) over your pool, and start filling on top of the plastic barrier at the same rate you drain from below the barrier. As the new/old water balance shifts, the plastic sheet gets pulled into the pool but keeps the new water separate from the old water as long as you don't let the edges slip in. Once you get to your estimated 75% point, you then let one side go in and pull the sheet out from the other, and let the water mix together.

    Another option might be a mobile reverse osmosis service--they can pull a trailer up to your pool and remove pretty much everything, including CYA and calcium, while saving most of your water. I don't know what's available in your area, but a quick g0og1e search brought up calsawayphoenixwest.com, and I bet there are others. It would probably be pricy, but you'd be finished in a day or two.
    6000 gal 2009 Intex 16' x 48", with 2500 GPH intex pump/filter combo upgrade kit and Heywood thru-wall AGP skimmer add-on.

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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Harsh words coming up for the OP....sorry. Why in the world haven't you done something about this for the past two years. Are you willing to learn and change your pool management?
    I have a TF-100 test kit. I've had one for two years. My CYA really is 150-200 (I'm not good at telling when the black dot has actually disappeared). Whatever the exact number is it's really, really high.
    You have the most important tool there is to getting your pool fixed but it certainly sounds like you are not using it.
    Dave S.
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Oh, and getting back to your first post in this thread, part of the problem (after the CYA issue) may just be location. You mentioned "...dirt, and leaves in my pool" while implying your neighbour doesn't have any issues. If you have trees or shrubs while he doesn't, and the prevailing wind funnels past your pool first, you may just be the unfortunate guy that gets all the junk dropped into your pool while he enjoys being in your fallout shadow. I'm just the opposite--I'm the last yard on the block and I have a privacy fence between my yard and the street. All kinds of junk blows in from my neighbours' yards with their short chain-link fences, swirls around my yard when it hits the tall privacy fence, and drops into my pool.
    6000 gal 2009 Intex 16' x 48", with 2500 GPH intex pump/filter combo upgrade kit and Heywood thru-wall AGP skimmer add-on.

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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    Harsh words coming up for the OP....sorry. Why in the world haven't you done something about this for the past two years. Are you willing to learn and change your pool management? You have the most important tool there is to getting your pool fixed but it certainly sounds like you are not using it.
    Because here I am two years later dead set on getting it fixed and I STILL can't find a way to do it.

    I figured I'd rent a 2" submersible pump from Home Depot then refill with a garden hose but I'm afraid of hydrostatic pressure and intense sunlight on the plaster. So, I called a water truck...anywhere from $600-$900 for the water...no way. My local pool guys won't drain and refill a plaster pool during the summer...especially one as old and cracked as mine.

    Like I said above I could drain 1 ft and refill multiple times but that will take forever and I'll be throwing tons of chlorine into it until the CYA finally goes down. And even when I get it done I'll have to start planning to do it again eventually because even though I don't use CYA the city water here in PHX has high TH and CH.

    It's very frustrating.
    13,500 gal IG plaster w/ Nautilus FNS DE 36 filter. Unknown original 1985 pump.

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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Quote Originally Posted by malligator View Post
    My friend, on the other hand, doesn't have a test kit and just floats two tabs at a time and throws in a pound or two of shock every month and his pool looks great. How does that work? Shouldn't his CYA be through the roof? Wouldn't two pucks of trichlor (~12ppm Cl/wk) be almost worthless in a pool with very high CYA? I attribute all my issues to a domino affect setup by high CYA that I never fixed. Why hasn't his pool spiraled out of control like mine has?
    Throw some fertilizer with phosphates and nitrates in it into his pool and he'll likely have the same problems as with your pool unless for some reason he's been diluting the water significantly to keep the CYA down (or got lucky with CYA going to zero over the winter). Or he might be using an algaecide or copper and been lucky not to get staining.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    Spend a few bucks on tarps and do as large of a drain as possible while covering the pool. Cover most of the pool and start draining in the late evening/afternoon. The next day should be baby sit plaster, keeping it damp, then refill. Hope for some clouds and a cooler day.

    That or struggle through the rest of the summer and do it in the winter.

    # Sent from mobile device. Beware of brevity and spelling errors!
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    I'd go for the sump pump rental in conjunction with draining to waste setting on your filter's multiport handle. Get it out as quickly as you can so you can start refilling.

    If you have lovely kind neighbors next door you could always ask them if you could use their hoses and water also during the refill. Offer to pay them x amount of dollars and it will be much cheaper than bringing in a truck of water.
    My Amazon Smile for November12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    I worked for two years to get my stabilizer down bit by bit via backwash and splashout. It can be done.
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    Re: How can my friend have it so much easier using pucks and powder shock?

    I just did a little bit of research on this topic and here's what I found. I saw a 2" discharge centrifugal pump for rent for under $70 per day. One similar to it on amazon pumps 6600 gallons per hour. So, maybe two hours max you could have the level pumped down. If you have neighbors willing to be bribed with money or beer for their water contribution, use more hoses to fill the pool. $150-200 and you could have this thing knocked out in a night. If you can get 5gpm from you and two neighbors, you could refill 8000 gallons in under 9 hours. If you don't have friendly neighbors, maybe rent one of those big roll off boxes, open or closed top as long as it'll hold water. Fill it over a day or two with your own water. Pump out and refill on your own.


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