Hello, I am new here and have a brand new pool.
To this point the only thing that has been done to my pool water is trichlor tablets while the plaster was curing and 480 pounds of salt added by the pool contractor about a week ago when they turned on the SWCG. I want to start this out right from the beginning. I got my test kit from Amazon yesterday and here are the results:
- Salinity: 3100 ppm.
- pH: 8.0 (My results were at the top of the visual scale, so the actual value could be higher. I know from running a large aquarium in the past that the pH of my municipal water supply tends to run high. It took 3 drops to produce 7.4 on the acid demand test, if that tells you anything helpful.)
- Free chlorine: 3.8 ppm (I have been running the pump about 12 hours a day -- during daylight -- and the SWCG is going at 100%. The temperature here is about 100 degrees and the pool is in full sun most of the day.)
- Combined chlorine: 0
- CYA: 35 ppm
- Total alkalinity: 130 ppm
- Ca++ hardness: 170 ppm
So, in order to start moving toward the ideal values mentioned in the Water Balance for Saltwater Pools article, I need to raise free chlorine a bit, lower my pH to the 7.4-7.8 range, lower total alkalinity to the 60-80 range, raise CYA to the 70-80 range, and raise Ca++ hardness to around 300.
This weekend my kids are going to be out of town, so this will give me a chance to tinker with the water chemistry as needed without them asking me every five minutes when they can get back in the pool. What I'd like to know is where is the best place to start? Does it matter which values I start trying to adjust first?
I have to say that I am a bit nervous. I have read about people having problems with high CYA so I worry about adding stabilizer and overshooting that mark. I also worry about adding a bunch of muriatic acid in order to lower my total alkalinity -- if my pH gets too low in that process do I take any risk of damaging my pump/filter/Stonescape/sealed flagstone coping? In the past when I was managing a 100 gallon aquarium huge water changes to correct mistakes were a bit of a hassle but not a huge deal. Here that's not the case.
Thanks in advance for any advice or reassurance you can provide.