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Thread: Novice here. Input please.

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    Novice here. Input please.

    Hi,
    I'm new to the site and looking for help (sorry if this is too elementary for you guys). I've viewed the links to pool school, chlorine / cya chart, pool math and SLAM pages. That is a lot of info to take in for a novice who wasn't even sure what all the abbreviations stood for. I'll continue educating myself, but am really hoping to get my pool in working order ASAP.

    We have been using a chemical only pool service this summer and our pool now has a green tint (we can see the drain). This is unacceptable. If I wanted a green pool, I could do that by myself for free! So, in finding this site, I'm thinking I will give this water chemistry stuff a go for myself knowing there is a lot of knowledge on here.

    Here are my numbers from the pool store:
    (Both my pool service and pool store are trying to push phosfree)
    Free Avail Chlorine: 5
    Total Avail Chlorine: 5
    Calcium Hardness: 390
    Cyanuric Acid: 75
    Total Alkalinity: 90
    pH: 7.6
    Total Dissolved Solids: 500
    Phosphates: 200

    I JUST ordered a K2006 test kit. I'm hoping to confirm the following and see if there's anything else I'm missing:
    1. Is SLAMing the correct move ?
    2. Is pH 7.6 okay ? (I know it says 7.2 - 7.5, not sure if being .1 high is a big deal or not)
    3. I plan to use liquid bleach while SLAMing (chlorox 8.25 seems to be the concensus?). I'll be sure to check CYA levels to know where my chlorine needs to be.
    4. I plan to brush and clean my cartridge filter during the whole process.
    5. Am I missing anything else ?

    Thank you all, I really appreciate your time an help!
    I know this much... Clear blue pool = happy wife = happy life.

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    We got ya covered! Welcome and pull up a seat! Yeah it is a LOT of info for sure!

    I will throw out a couple of links that might help some. Note it has the names and abr.

    Pool School - Recommended Pool Chemicals

    Pool School - Recommended Levels

    Bleach-walmart greater value 8.25% is FINE. Brand name does NOT matter! So long as it is plain bleach! You can use the chlorine from the pool store (11%) if it is easy for you to get to.

    For a SLAM you want to lower your PH down to 7.2.

    Let us know how things are going!

    Kim

    - - - Updated - - -

    Any idea when your test kit will be there?
    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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    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    You're off to a wonderful start with a recommended test kit on the way and some knowledge gained in Pool School. First off, once you get your kit, don't bother getting your water tested at the pool store any more. Pool store testing is notoriously bad, ironically. Your test kit is much more accurate and certainly more convenient.

    1. Yes. SLAMing is the correct move with a green pool. Be sure to thoroughly read the article about it and realize it's a process that needs to be followed. It's all in there as to how to start and how to know when you're done.
    2. pH of 7.6 is fine for normal maintenance. Many times it's recommended to lower to 7.2 before starting the SLAM because the pH test is not accurate when your FC is above 10 ppm and during the course of the SLAM the pH will likely rise some due to aeration and normal use and you won't be able to check the pH during the SLAM.
    3. Liquid bleach/chlorine is what's needed. How much can vary greatly depending on the condition of the pool. 10 gallons will get you started, depending on the size of your pool. Find the cheapest source you can from a store that has good turnover of product (fresh bleach, bleach loses strength over time). Pool stores and some hardware stores sell higher % liquid pool shock (10-12.5%) so that's another option depending on price and availability. Update your signature with your pool details so we can help you better. (Settings -> Edit Signature)
    4. Brushing during the SLAM is ESSENTIAL. Must be done daily, twice if possible. Also important to remove ladders/lights and scrub in those nooks and crannies. Clean your cartridges when the pressure rises 20% higher than when they are clean. Your pressure will tell you when to clean them. Cleaning too often actually can lessen the filtration power of your filter as most filter a bit better when dirty, but not too dirty that they have excessive pressure.
    5. Just missing some before and after pictures! Post your test results once you get your kit. You may be able to add some bleach periodically until your kit arrives to keep it from getting worse, but without a pool volume, it's hard to tell you how much would be safe.
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
    40x20 Pool: 32K Gallons * Vinyl * Bleach Chlorination * Hayward S270T Sand Filter * Pentair SuperFlo 1 HP * Teledyne/Laars Heater * AquaVac Tigershark * TF-100 w/ SpeedStir
    Isolated Spa - 345 Gallons

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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    Welcome aboard!

    I won't re-hash what's already been posted, I'll just add a couple of things...

    Click 'Settings' in the upper-right-corner of the page. On the left-hand side, under 'My Settings,' click 'Edit Signature.' Add as many details as you have about your pool -- volume, finish, and filter type are the biggest ones, but pump specs help too.

    Also, there is no need to buy brand-name bleach. Great Value concentrated bleach (unscented, regular bleach, not "EZ Pour" or anything else) works just fine. Same concentration as the Clorox, just less expensive. At my local Walmart, GV concentrated bleach was $0.90 cheaper per 121-oz jug than Clorox. 4 jugs of GV cost the same as 3 jugs of Clorox.

    Finally, no one can say for sure how many jugs it will take (my SLAM, with more than an algae problem, took me 3 weeks and 90+ jugs of GV bleach...), but 8-10 should get you started. Yes, everyone at Walmart is going to think you're cleaning up a crime scene. No, there's nothing you can do about it.

    Again, welcome to TFP -- you've made the right decision in not trusting your local pool "experts".
    25,000 gallon freeform gunnite/plaster, built in the 1970s/80s; Sta-Rite 9463004 575-lb. sand filter; Sta-Rite DuraGlas/Max-E-Glas (P2RA5F-125L) single-speed 1.5 HP pump, manufactured 12/1993 (1M93M).
    Helpful links: TFTestKits; Pool School; ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry; Chlorine/CYA Chart; PoolMath; SLAM - Shock Level And Maintain

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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    Thank you to all. Very helpful. I'll be sure to update my profile. I just got my test kit and I see my pH is about 7.6, so I plan to lower pH to 7.2 (the experience would be good).

    I ran a second test, CYA. I'm following the instructions and youtube videos (7ml pool water add R-0013 to make 14ml, mix for 30s.. then "drip" into other compartment and watch black dot disappear) but I am getting NOWHERE close to the 100ppm reading on the back. You think this is right ? I just pulled my floating chlorinator, and it appears there were about 6 tablets (I've read they also add CYA). If this is the case, is the only remedy to empty some water ?

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    Yeap draining time! Those pucks and powder shock will push the CYA up and this is what happens.

    Have you played with Pool Math at all? This is when you are going to need it to see how much water to drain.

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/calc.html

    You can do a diluted CYA test as well to get a truer number for your CYA.

    CYA dilution discussion

    Let us know what you find.

    HUGS! We will get it balanced!

    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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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    Yes, trust the Taylor test, we keep saying that pool store tests are not reliable and people prove it every day.

    Yes, unfortunately the only way to lower CYA is a partial drain and refill. 40-50% probably in your case to start. Might take a couple of tries. You want to get CYA down to 50 or 60. I assume you have a gunite pool and are not saltwater.

    Yes, dichlor and trichlor pucks and shock add CYA.

    Please update your pool info in your signature so we can better help you. More here, Pool School - Getting Started
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    I updated my profile after my last post, but we have approx 13,000 gal in ground gunite pool w/ spa. No salt water.
    Thank you guys. Yes, I have played with the pool math calculator to try to get an idea of what I'll be looking at.
    Just out of curiosity, I just went to retest CYA at my local pool store, and they came back w/ 90ppm and started questioning the age of my reagents. Like you all have said, I'll chalk it up to another incorrect store test considering I just got my kit (although I suppose the test kit could've been sitting for awhile and aged?).

    I'll start the drain/refill process. Prob not such a bad thing to start w/ some fresh water anyways.
    13,000 +/- gal inground gunite pool w/ spa (Built 1994). K2006 Test kit. Challenger AC-FAB 2HP pump. Sta-Rite Posi-Flo II Cartridge filter PTM100.

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    Can you please add what kind of filter you have? That is a major piece of info. if you need any other help along the way.

    THANKS!

    Happy draining!

    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: Novice here. Input please.

    Welcome to the forum & congrats on taking the first steps to a Trouble Free Pool.

    Is your test kit the K2006 or K2006-C?

    The reason I ask is that the K2006 will most likely not have enough chlorine reagents to do a proper slam at higher CYA/FC levels (this is what makes the TF100 a better value).

    If the bottle of R-0871 is 0.75oz you will go through that very quick, and you do not want to run out in the middle of a SLAM.

    Also, to save on reagents use the 10ml sample at 0.5ppm resolution to help conserve reagents, & if the water sample turns pink with one scoop of R-0870 powder you don't need the second scoop.

    Dom
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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    Update:

    Yes, it is just a K2006 test kit. Thanks for the tip on the 10ml vs 25ml.

    I've updated pump and filter info. I've brushed and drained the pool and refilled. Got my CYA down to 60. Lowered my pH down to 7.2

    1. I'm assuming establishing my FC is required to know how much bleach to add based on the CYA / Chrlorine chart ? I tried testing and just added 2 scoops of R-0870 Powder to 10ml water... and no pink.. at all. Added a 3-4 more scoops and got a slight pink. I'm assuming this means no free chlorine which means my chlorine is being used up fighting off contaminants?

    2. Am I supposed to just keep adding the R-0870 powder until it turns a deep pink followed by R-0871 drops in order to know how many bottles of bleach to add? I didn't want to just waste my reagents since I'm not 100% sure.

    3. Establishing my chlorine levels is needed to know how much bleach I need to add to properly SLAM... correct ?
    13,000 +/- gal inground gunite pool w/ spa (Built 1994). K2006 Test kit. Challenger AC-FAB 2HP pump. Sta-Rite Posi-Flo II Cartridge filter PTM100.

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    swoopman's Avatar
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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    If you added 2 scoops of R-0870 to 10ml of water and got no pink that means you have zero FC. No need to keep adding more scoops.

    Go to http://www.troublefreepool.com/calc.html and enter your current numbers in the left column and your pool volume. For FC enter 0.

    Use the FC/CYA chart to determine shock level for the SLAM and enter that as your FC goal, set the % for your bleach (i.e. 8.25%, 10%, 12.5%) and Pool Math will tell you how much to add.

    Hope that helps. Ask more questions if it's not clear.
    TF-100 Test Kit
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    One scoop is all you need, if it doesn't turn pink run for the bleach bottle.
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    should be my last post on this thread.

    I just wanted to update those that have helped and those who have read with similar issues.

    I added about 4 bottles of 121oz of bleach (per pool math), brushed, cleaned filter... and the pool turned clear blue. I was amazed. I really want thank everyone. And if you're new to the site, you've found the right place. A ton of ppl on here that really know their stuff and are willing to help.

    Thanks for all the info.. and help w/ the testing. The 10ml vs 25ml test to save reagents was helpful (had to get into it to fully understand what you were talking about).
    13,000 +/- gal inground gunite pool w/ spa (Built 1994). K2006 Test kit. Challenger AC-FAB 2HP pump. Sta-Rite Posi-Flo II Cartridge filter PTM100.

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    Awesome! Pics or it didn't happen!
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    Re: Novice here. Input please.

    Did you pass the overnight chlorine loss test? Looking clear is only one criteria.
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