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Thread: Extremely low ph... What's my next step?

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    Extremely low ph... What's my next step?

    So I made a huge rookie mistake and accidentally added way too much borax to my 10'x30" 1000gallon Intex pool. This raised the pH much too high so I bought some muriatic acid. When looking up the calculations on poolcalculator.com the amount of acid it said to add seemed like too much. So I added roughly half the amount and my ph plummeted very low. The color of the water wasn't even on the test kit. So I borrowed my dad's ph meter and tested the pool water with it. After a few tests it seems as though the ph is at a whopping 2.3...

    So now my question is what should i do next? When i looked on poolcalculator to see what i need to raise the ph from 2.3 to 7.5 it says 966 ounces. That is a lot of Borax. Is this reasonable for such a small pool?

    Now the other issue is that I have nowhere to drain the pool water other than the lawn. If I wanted to just start over would this low ph water wreak havoc on my lawn and any other plants in the near vicinity? The grass is already dead due to the hot summer here but there are trees nearby. There is a drain in the front yard but i would need to buy quite a long hose to reach that far.

    So please help me understand what my options are here. I'm thinking the pool water is screwed beyond repair due to the large amount of borax and muriatic acid that has been put in it but I'm hoping that there are some solutions. Also, I tried to google this before posting and I couldn't find any info on water with this low of a ph. Thanks for the help!

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    Re: Extremely low ph... What's my next step?

    Dump the water and start over....your cost? $5-10 bucks. Easy Peasy
    Dave S.
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    Re: Extremely low ph... What's my next step?

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    Dump the water and start over....your cost? $5-10 bucks. Easy Peasy
    With no harm to the surrounding plants?

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    Re: Extremely low ph... What's my next step?

    First, you might want to verify that your calculations are correct. I don't know anything about the pool calculator you're using, but PoolMath on this site is great. I've never had a problem. You can reference Duraleigh's signature for the link.
    Second, what test kit are you using? That could be an issue as well if it's unreliable.

    You might also benefit from adding baking soda as well as borax to raise your total alkalinity while raising your pH. If your TA isn't up pretty good, it will allow some pretty significant fluctuations in pH. If your pH is truly 2.3, then yes, it could cause damage to surrounding vegetation if you dump a bunch of water (unless you're raising blueberries or azaleas).

    If you don't want to dump the water, then try adding a little bit at a time and then retesting. It would also be helpful to know some more numbers on the water.
    24 foot round, above ground vinyl.
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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Extremely low ph... What's my next step?

    in order for any of the pool calculators to give you the correct amount of something to add, you have to know some of the other parameters.

    With pH, if you dont have your TA entered, then the calculators result will be wrong. pH and Ta must go hand in hand.

    So... make sure before you go adding stuff, just make sure you're entry into the calculator is right.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    Re: Extremely low ph... What's my next step?

    Quote Originally Posted by medicdford View Post
    First, you might want to verify that your calculations are correct. I don't know anything about the pool calculator you're using, but PoolMath on this site is great. I've never had a problem. You can reference Duraleigh's signature for the link.
    Second, what test kit are you using? That could be an issue as well if it's unreliable.

    You might also benefit from adding baking soda as well as borax to raise your total alkalinity while raising your pH. If your TA isn't up pretty good, it will allow some pretty significant fluctuations in pH. If your pH is truly 2.3, then yes, it could cause damage to surrounding vegetation if you dump a bunch of water (unless you're raising blueberries or azaleas).

    If you don't want to dump the water, then try adding a little bit at a time and then retesting. It would also be helpful to know some more numbers on the water.

    That's another problem that I have because I think I also added way too much baking soda before I added any of the other chemicals thinking that baking soda was what raised ph. I know that it does raise ph but it also raises TA so I think my TA might be very high. I will retest tomorrow to get a better TA number.

    But I'm using the poolmaster 5 way test kit. I had difficulties trying to measure TA because I kept adding drops and the color wasn't changing but I will try again tomorrow.

    I'm also pretty sure the ph meter that I used was calibrated correctly so i think the ph really is 2.3. I'm almost certain that I will have to dump this water and start over so perhaps I should add a couple boxes of borax and just try to get that ph a bit higher before I dump it? I'm not going to do anything just yet but I'm thinking that might be my only solution at the moment. I'm not super concerned about the vegetation because it's pretty much just grass but I would like to get a good idea.

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