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Thread: Chemical MESS

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    Chemical MESS

    Hi All! Thank you for taking the time to help! Pool specs are in the signature line. I am having an issue getting the chemicals right/stabilizing in the pool! We have had the pool about 5 years, and I thought we had mastered it; boy was I wrong! This year started with us having an issue with High PH. We are in the mid-west, and have had tremendous amounts of rain (not sure if this affects PH or not). So we began adding muratic acid to bring the PH down. Everything seemed to be going ok, with the exception of continuing to have to add the acid quite often. It never seemed to stabilize. After our 4th of July party (thank goodness), the water started getting very cloudy. The test kit we had (chemical kit from the pool store - yes, i know!), that we had good luck with in years past (replaced each year - no exception for 2015) was registering the chlorine OFF the charts with PH still high. Cloudy water and algae starting to grow.

    Thinking it was the media in the filter, we cleaned out the filter entirely (the last clean out was about 3 years ago). We did add some pea gravel to the bottom of the filter (about 50 lbs to cover the "fingers", and about 150 lbs of sand). After a few days of lots of chlorine and running the pump with the new media, I figured we would have crystal clear water! Wrong. Now, cloudy, and algae growth (which actually I couldn't quite tell if it was mustard colored algae, or blow-back from the new media).

    At any rate, under suspicion, that the test kit was foul, I decided to take the water to a pool store to
    test. Pool store test came back LOW chlorine, LOW alkalinity, Low Calcium hardness, High PH. I came home and ordered a TFTestkit! In an effort to maintain the water even a little bit (don't beat me up TOO BAD!!), I did add chlorine; 2 tabs a day, and also added baking soda until I received the test kit. The water looked great! But below results indicate otherwise!

    So, with all that background, here are the REAL water test results. And I am at a loss, 1) how did the CYA get so high, and can I do anything to lower it (besides drain the pool)? And 2) what is the first thing I need to address in this mess? And WHY has our PH been an issue since the beginning of the year?! Anything you can provide is GREATLY appreciated!!

    FC - 40PPM
    CC - 0
    TC - 40PPM
    TA - 180
    CYA - 100
    PH - average 8
    15,000, AG, Vinyl liner, Hayward-245 sand Filter (with 50 lbs pea gravel at bottom, 150 lbs sand), Hayward 1 HP Power Flo pump. Pool was inherited with the house. Have had and used for about 5 years.

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: Chemical MESS!

    WOW. From now on when you test the FC, use 10cc of pool water so that each drop = 0.5 (in other words, 80 drops divided by 2=40ppm) This saves your reagent.

    Your CYA is high because you use pucks. Each puck adds *almost as much* CYA to the water as it does Chlorine. And you may actually be much higher than the 100 which is the standard limitation on test kits. Take 1 part pool water and mix it with equal part of tap water. Then repeat the test using this mixture as your pool water sample and double the result. Iyou then get a result such as 70, your true result is 140. Capisce??

    Who told you to put pea gravel in the filter??? Never have I heard of this and I suspect it is contributing to your problems.
    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.
    Our pool build--> Our Pool Solved Our Sloping Yard Skippy's Cheap Pool Cooler -->Skippy's New Fountain

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    Re: Chemical MESS!

    We decided to go with the pea gravel just as an added medium...it is kinda "controversial", so to say. We were having issues BEFORE the switch to the pea gravel with the initial cloudy water and algae....

    I will test again diluting the sample with tap water.
    15,000, AG, Vinyl liner, Hayward-245 sand Filter (with 50 lbs pea gravel at bottom, 150 lbs sand), Hayward 1 HP Power Flo pump. Pool was inherited with the house. Have had and used for about 5 years.

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    Re: Chemical MESS!

    CYA with diluted sample is 150. that's even worse! Here are a few pics of the pool. It is looking clear - there is a some discoloration on the steps. Which makes me think algae...but seemingly, I am no expert....IMG_4314.jpg
    IMG_4315.jpg
    15,000, AG, Vinyl liner, Hayward-245 sand Filter (with 50 lbs pea gravel at bottom, 150 lbs sand), Hayward 1 HP Power Flo pump. Pool was inherited with the house. Have had and used for about 5 years.

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: Chemical MESS!

    The only way to lower that CYA is to drain some and replace the water with fresh water. You can get away with doing it in increments or one big push (But leave at least a foot or so at the bottom at all times to maintain the liner). How is your water source- city, well or trucked in? Pool Math says you need to drain 73% to get down to 40 CYA.

    If city or well, have you ever tested it for baseline values? Sometimes knowing that stuff is useful down the road.

    Have you discovered Pool Math yet? Nifty app here on TFP (top of the home page) which will help guide you in taking control of your "mess" as you put it . You need to pop your numbers in to the "now" column, then input what your desired levels are, and it will advise you. Don't forget to put in your pool water volume and down at the bottom your pool surface and that you want to take the advice of TFPool. Gotta fill those three things out first to get it to calculate the numbers. It will also give you your desirable ranges as suggestions.

    You need to perform an OCLT (Overnight Chlorine Loss Test) per Pool School instructions to determine if there is living algae still present....and possibly the need to SLAM your pool to get it back clear, clean and healthy.
    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.
    Our pool build--> Our Pool Solved Our Sloping Yard Skippy's Cheap Pool Cooler -->Skippy's New Fountain

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    poolnoob.ca's Avatar
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    Re: Chemical MESS!

    Hi YippeeSkippy, i searched TFP for "pea gravel filter" and there are dozens of results, so i guess it is a known technique. i did not however read the threads to see if it's a good idea or not.

    Twotone, pH rise is caused by aeration, but i don't see anything in your pool that would cause a lot if any. I suppose rain could increase pH by the aeration of the drops hitting the water. As YippeeSkippy said above, check the pH of your hose water if that's how you filled it, possibly it is high in pH or alkalinity.
    32,000L Fibreglass Leisure Pools IG 12.5'x23'x5' Pump: AstralPools BX1 1.0HP
    Filter: AstralPools ZX-310 SWCG: AstralPools VX7T
    Heater: Hayward H250FDN Test Kit: TF-100

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    aussieta's Avatar
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    Re: Chemical MESS!

    hi and welcome to tfp
    to answer your questions in order
    1 your cya got that high from using pucks, to fix this you need to drain water , this should be a high priority
    please add your location to your signature. you can use a slightly higher cya the further south you are
    2 your ph is rising because your ta is elevated, adding bicarb made this worse
    but the ph test is not accurate when fc is over 10 so dont bother testing until your fc is below 10
    if you allow your fc to drop below 10 with 150cya you risk algae
    my suggestion would be to drain half the water and refill
    then allow fc to drop to 10
    then run a full test including ch
    you dont need to add any ch but you need to know where it is
    SWG inground peanut shaped eco-bright concrete pool
    50,000 litres 13,000 gallons
    Lincoln Salt Chlorinator, 25 gram cell Sand Filter with glass media
    Taylor K2006-C test kit, Taylor K-1766 salt test, Dolphin M500 pool cleaner
    are you taking care of your pool or is the poolshop taking care of you

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    In the Industry

    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: Chemical MESS!

    Using pea gravel is just fine and even encouraged in some filters. The idea is to encapsulate the laterals with more porous materials so that sand won't restrict water flow directly around and through the laterals.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Chemical MESS!

    While you are draining to lower the CYA also take those wonderful steps out. That is one of the biggest areas for algae to hide.

    How are you weighing your steps down?

    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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