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Thread: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

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    New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    What a great forum to stumble upon. Thank you to all who give their time so freely to help others!

    We have a brand new fiberglass pool and have been swimming for 2 months.

    Two problems (possibly related) that I would appreciate advice on:

    1) Post backwash pressure runs 18 psi with our 300 lb sand filter.
    2) Pre backwash pressure hovers at 30 psi.
    3) I backwash (rinse, backwash) for 2-3 minutes. The glass tube never displays dirty or murky water. The water coming out the backwash pipe is also relatively clear.
    4) Pressure drops to 18 psi and skimmer suction and return jet pressure is great.
    5) Within a few hours (1-2 hours) the pressure is back up to 26psi and within 12 hours it is back up to 30 psi again!

    Second issue is cloudy water. The shallow end (3 feet) is 95% clear. The deep end (8 feet) is 5% clear. The water looks murky like there is sediment floating but samples in a glass jar don't reveal anything to the eye.
    I have tried (over the course of a week) a whole bottle of clarifier which seemed to gather something in a clumpy, slimy floating configuration but was not effective enough to clear the water.
    I have been running the filter 24/7 and notice a cluster of sand/grime (dissipates when I try and gather with a net but vacuums out ok) by two of the return jets.

    I have a feeling the two issues are related.

    I have ordered BioGuard Sparkle Up to add to my sand filter. Does this sound like a recommended course of action?

    Taylor K-2006 test results:
    1.6 FC
    .4 CC
    7.2 PH
    70 TA
    140-150 CH
    Too low to detect (still saw black dot) CYA
    Salt = 3800

    I have been running SWG at 20% but have now increased to 40% to raise FC.
    Will add Stabilizer to increase CYA.

    Any input on the filter pressure and cloudy water would be greatly appreciated!
    2015 installation, 18,000 gal. fiberglass, Coverstar Auto cover, 300 lb SandMaster filter, 1.5 HP Pentair SuperFlo pump, AquaRite SWG

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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    First you have to rule put organics in the water.

    I am running into some of the same issues here in this thread...

    Lost my sparkle..
    16x32 IG rectangular 21,800k new vinyl liner 2014, Triton II TR 50 sand Filter, Pentair 3/4 hsp whisperflow pump, 3 returns, TF100 test kit w/speedstir. Maytronics s 300i robot.

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Hi, welcome to TFP! I believe you have a nascent algae bloom. You need to complete the SLAM process , then raise the CYA to 70ppm for you to use the SWG properly. For now only raise CYA to 20ppm for the slam process. You can add the rest after the slam is complete. Your filter is clogging with microscopic algae and if you don't start the slam process your pool will be green in a few days.
    TFP Moderator
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    Vogue 21' round AG, Pentair 1 hp 2 speed pump, 36 sq ft DE filter, Hayward S180T 150# sand filter, Houston, Texas
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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Hello Clove and welcome to TFP! With the exception of an SWG, you and I have similar type/size pools. The FB is quite easy to maintain, but the water still leads to be properly balanced. You have two immediate issues: Low CYA and low FC. Not enough CYA to protect the little bit of free chorine, so that's leaving the door wide-open for algae.

    As already noted, knock-out the Pool School - SLAM - Shock Level And Maintain. Follow those instructions to the letter. I'm doing it right now. After that, balance your FC and CYA according to Pool School - Water Balance for SWGs page. But first pass your SLAM. Keep the Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart chart handy at all times since this will be your primary reference on any given day.

    If you have any more questions, just let us know. Have a good day!
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Thanks all!

    Is it possible to SLAM the pool using the SWG? I have a SuperChlorinate setting which runs at 100% for 24 hours. Is this less effective than bleach and the SLAM process?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Thanks all!

    Is it possible to SLAM the pool using the SWG? I have a SuperChlorinate setting which runs at 100% for 24 hours. Is this less effective than bleach and the SLAM process?
    2015 installation, 18,000 gal. fiberglass, Coverstar Auto cover, 300 lb SandMaster filter, 1.5 HP Pentair SuperFlo pump, AquaRite SWG

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    You will shorten the life of the SWG if you try to use it to slam. It usually takes a few days to complete the slam process. We recommend turning the SWG off during the slam and use liquid chlorine instead. After the slam is completed and the chlorine has dropped back into the recommended daily range you can turn the SWG back on.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Yea what she said LOL

    Hi and welcome! I am glad to see that you have a good test kit. You do need to get some more regents for the the FC test as you will go through them during a SLAM.

    During a SLAM do not bother testing anything other than the FC and every once in a while the CC. The PH will not test correctly and the others do not matter during a SLAM.

    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: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    48 hours into the SLAM.
    CC = 0
    Overnight loss still occurring (2-3ppm)
    Water as cloudy as before, if not worse.

    Clearly, I am in for more days of SLAMming.
    The sand filter max pressure has dropped from 30 to 26psi.
    Can this be explained by dead vs alive algae?

    In sunlight, we now see floating white particles (dead algae?) and there is a shiny film on the water surface (sunscreen)?

    Any advice other than keep on SLAMming?

    Is flushing out a sand filter advised given a suspected nascent algae bloom or will dead algae be backwashed out? Right now the backwash is still only clear water.

    thanks!
    2015 installation, 18,000 gal. fiberglass, Coverstar Auto cover, 300 lb SandMaster filter, 1.5 HP Pentair SuperFlo pump, AquaRite SWG

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    TrevNJPool's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    When I backwash my sand filter 300lb, it is clearly dirty water. It also runs at 12 psi after backwashing. This may be dumb but are you positive it is on the filter setting on the multiport valve.
    40x18 Lazy L Rectangle
    29500gal IG w/ vinyl liner
    HAYWARD S244T 300lb sand filter
    Hayward Super Pump 1 1/2hp

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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Yes assuming the multiplier valve is on right, I backwash, rinse and return to filter.
    I have always (the 2 months since install) had high pressure. 30 pre backwash (now 26 since start of SLAM) and 18 post. The pressure quickly jumps from 18 to mid 20s within a few hours of back washing.

    It has stumped my Pool Contractor and I am close to looking for a Pool "doctor" to verify all is installed/setup correctly but thought I would check in here first. It's odd, no?
    2015 installation, 18,000 gal. fiberglass, Coverstar Auto cover, 300 lb SandMaster filter, 1.5 HP Pentair SuperFlo pump, AquaRite SWG

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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Do not use the SWG for a SLAM. Do not use the swg for a SLAM. Shut it off during your SLAM Shut it off during your SLAM.

    It's odd, no?
    Not at all. You are not interpreting your sand filter correctly.

    When you first turn it one, the sand is clean and your psi is 18.

    As water circulates through it, the filter picks up debris from your cloudy, dirty water and captures it. Now it is harder for the pump to push water through the dirty sand so your pressure starts to rise. It will continue to rise up to about 35 psi or so as more and more debris is captured but in reality, you should be backwashing it when it increases by 25% over the original 18 psi....(about 23-24)

    Whether you see debris or not in the sight glass, the backwash is working because your now clean sand results in a psi of 18 again.

    Your sand filter is doing exactly what it is supposed to do....filtering debris. You must run your pump 24/7 and backwash each time you get to 25% over 18 psi until there is no debris left in the pool water for it to capture. Then your psi will stay at 18 for a long period of time increasing very slowly as it continues to clean your pool.

    If that stumps your pool contractor he is VERY ignorant of pools and not to be trusted.


    How do you fix this? SLAM your pool. Don't dabble and make up your own rules and drop magic potions like clarifiers in your pool (very bad idea). Just roll up your sleeves and SLAM your pool, Follow the instructions to a perfect T and you will have clear water and a filter that doesn't require backwashing everyday.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    TrevNJPool's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Maybe you have a really efficient filter. I have never had a new system so ..... mine can stay at post backwash pressure fore several days without needing it.
    40x18 Lazy L Rectangle
    29500gal IG w/ vinyl liner
    HAYWARD S244T 300lb sand filter
    Hayward Super Pump 1 1/2hp

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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Update and feedback request:

    Day SEVEN of SLAM.
    1) Have passed the Overnight test with 0 loss two nights in a row.
    2) Have 0 CC, has always been zero.
    3) Have a clear(er) pool than ever before. Could see a quarter on the bottom of 8 foot end.

    Great news but I fear I am not finished yet!

    BUT, every morning (with the pump running 24/7) I find straight lines of white residue in the creases of the deep end (where the wall and bottom meet). I have been vacuuming the sediment/algae out to waste every morning.
    It's hard to capture a photo but see below. Nothing accumulates during the day (pool in full sun) although when I brush (4x a day) the brush still stirs up visible residue on the pool floor (not walls).



    Additionally, the pool sock is still capturing a bunch of yellow debris constantly. The photo is 1st thing this morning. Residue is not slimy but rather the texture of wet flour. Goopy wet powder.


    (PHOTOS deleted as they were bigger than size limit).

    Despite passing the 3 SLAM criteria, should I keep on SLAMing until there is no morning residue to vacuum up? Or should I proceed to my MA SLAM level for 24 hours?

    Thanks in advance for guidance and help!
    CLove3415
    2015 installation, 18,000 gal. fiberglass, Coverstar Auto cover, 300 lb SandMaster filter, 1.5 HP Pentair SuperFlo pump, AquaRite SWG

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Looking back at your thread, unless I missed it, I didn't see anything that indicated you were treating specifically for (or suspected) mustard algae. However you can bump-up your FC for 24 hrs to be safe if you chose to, but remember to stay out of the water during that time period. I wonder if that accumulation at the bottom you are referring to is simply residual dead algae still sinking to the bottom and getting stuck in those creases based on water circulation (or lack thereof). Keep in mind that some folks pass a SLAM and still require additional filtration to remove any dead algae remnants for a couple days. Your call on the MA treatment for 24 hrs, but you certainly seemed to have passed your normal SLAM with flying colors.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    yeah what they said LOL ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

    It might just be dirt or..............pollen or...........who knows.

    Your pics did not show. I would love to see them.

    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: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    Thanks for your quick replies. I have suspected MA as there has been evidence of white/light yellow algae growing on floor bottom coupled with really cloudy water.
    Pool store had mentioned there had been "a lot of MA outbreaks" in the area this summer.

    Can anyone tell me if the gunk in the skimmer sock looks like MA (or any other algae)? How do I tell if it's alive or dead?

    I reduced photo sizes to be under the posting limit. Hopefully they are now visible.

    Thanks again!

    image2.jpg

    The residue is hard to photograph but it's the the top right corner of this photo. Straight lines of fluffy residue that disappears if brushed and needs to be snuck upon to vacuum up.
    image1.jpg
    2015 installation, 18,000 gal. fiberglass, Coverstar Auto cover, 300 lb SandMaster filter, 1.5 HP Pentair SuperFlo pump, AquaRite SWG

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool: Short Lived Backwash & Cloudy Water

    A few descriptors from other experts:
    Mustard algae will spread and grow up the walls of the pool if you don't shock the pool. Dust/pollen will keep re-appearing, but will never accumulate on the walls of the pool. If you do shock the pool, mustard algae will mostly disappear as long as you are at shock level and brushing occasionally. Dust will continue appearing at the same rate when you are at shock level.
    Gritty is usually dirt; squishy is usually pollen; slimy is usually algae.
    Mustard algae tends to have smaller spots with "halos" around them.
    Of course here is our MA page: Pool School - Mustard Algae
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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