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Thread: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

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    Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    I'm new to this forum and a new pool owner as of April this year. I have an above ground 24' rosemount round pool that is 54" deep. I have a salt water filter/pump combo unit and a permasalt system from family leisure.

    I've had a nightmare of a time balancing the water and have had issues with my install that have recently been corrected. My install issues were related to the company installers putting my pool sand filter on clay (very little topsoil here, so clay underneath was revealed during dig). The weight of the sand filter ball made that side of the filter sink into the ground causing it not to be level. This was corrected last week when we had contractors install a patio on the south side of the pool for the equipment and ladder. My sand filter is now level and I had one of the techs check it today saying it is operating normal.

    I have my permasalt system set for a level 3. See system detail here:
    Free Shipping on The Perma Salt System by Family Leisure | Pool Supplies | Family Leisure

    See filter/pump combo unit here:
    Free Shipping 26 Swimming Pool Sand Filter System | Pool Supplies | Family Leisure

    Now.. my issues have been water quality problems (cloudy water + green algae on occasion). I have really had a problem keeping the pool clear and having the ph and alkalinity levels in check. My system is supposed to use that perma salt system to keep the pool clean and clear and every 2 weeks I'm supposed to add a bag and bottle to keep it running. They told me to check ph and alk every 3 days with test strips and adjust with ph plus, ph minus, alkalinity plus or muratic acid. I've bought alot of these chemicals over the past months since the install and keep struggling to adjust the levels which is costing me alot of money and frustrating my wife and kids.

    Bag:
    Perma Salt Activate Shock Treatment by Swim Clear Pool Chemicals | Pool Supplies | Family Leisure

    Bottle:
    Perma Salt Klairate Natural Enzyme Clarifier | Pool Supplies | Family Leisure

    We've only had green algae once and we used bottled chlorine from the vendor to clear that up. We have had white cloudy water probably a dozen or more times. We have a blue solar cover that we try to keep on the pool whenever we are not using it. Right now I'm just trying to get my water clear and safe for my daughter's birthday pool party this Sunday. I don't have a lot of time to adjust the chemicals so I'm hoping for some advice here.

    I'm using aquachek copper test strips.

    I've been struggling to get the PH and Alk levels correct. Lately my PH has been very low, at 6.2 or lower based on the color of the test strip. I add a bunch of PH Plus (bunch meaning 5 to 10 lbs) and the PH barely moves and my Alk goes up. I use muratic acid which lowers the Alk but bottoms out the PH. I go to the pool store and they sell me more PH plus and acid. This is a vicious cycle I'm trying to get out of.

    I switched PH plus brands today from the brand at family leisure to HTH ph plus. This PH plus actually seemed to raise my PH better than the other brand but also made the water a bit cloudy. I went from a 6.2 or lower to maybe 6.8 to 7 based on color of the strip. Unfortunately my Alk went from a 80-100 to a 120-160 type level. I just added a gallon of muratic acid and will re-test in the morning but I'm afraid this will bottom out my PH again.

    I read some articles here about aerating the pool. That is one change where I added the flow valve cover onto my pool input hole. This was missing earlier because of the slanted filter and I was told to re-add it after it was level. I had it pointed down but the tech today said sideways was better so its aimed right and somewhat down right now. I have bought a circulator to install in the pool to try and help with water circulation but I'm waiting on an adapter for that from the manufacturer.

    Can someone give me advice on how to raise my PH without raising Alk?

    I'm due for my bag+bottle tomorrow as well. We've had to do double the dose lately to have that work properly. I've been told this is the equivalent of a chlorine pool shock.

    Can anyone point me in the right direction here? I'd really like to try and make the right adjustments to make this pool usable for the party.

    In terms of chemical wait times I was told I had to wait 12 hours after acid, and 3 hours after any ph plus, ph minus, alk minus or bag/bottle combo.

    Right now my pool cover is off for tonight as I'm trying to get this balanced and keep an eye on the clarity of the water.

    Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
    Rosemount 24' round AGP, 13,500 Gal, TF-100, Waterway Sand Filter 26"

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    Welcome to TFP!

    If you are only using test strips, then it is nearly impossible to offer meaningful advice. They are junk. And pool store testing is no better. You need to invest in one of the recommended test kits.

    I only skimmed through the very long post. What does the water look like?
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    The water was crystal clear this morning. After my filter was inspected I was told to add ph plus by the pool store tech. I added the HTH PH plus which made the water a bit more cloudy (white) but not really bad. The PH came up some but the Alk went very high to almost the highest color on the test strip. I added the acid and have not checked since. It is dark now.
    Rosemount 24' round AGP, 13,500 Gal, TF-100, Waterway Sand Filter 26"

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    Welcome to TFP!

    We cannot help you get your pool cleared up by Sunday. But, we can teach you how to take care of your pool, clear it up and keep it clear forever after that. My pool has been crystal clear for over 3 years and we have never missed a day of swimming ever that we wanted to swim. We swim nearly every day.

    There are two major issues causing your pool problems. Not knowing what your CYA level is in the pool and not maintaining enough chlorine in the pool for your CYA level. Chlorine CYA Chart

    First, you must get a good test kit, Pool School - Test Kits Compared. I use the TF100 from TFTestkits.net

    Then you will need to test your water and give us the test results. We will help you adjust your water chemistry and get you ready to Pool School - SLAM - Shock Level And Maintain your pool. This is the only way to kill the algae in your pool once and for all.

    While you wait for your test kit read this, Pool School - ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry. That is how we maintain pool water at TFP. If you want to see some TFP clear water take a look at the pics of my pool water in my signature. It has been that clear and open year round for over 3 years.
    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: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    I'll risk condemnation here and tell you how to fix your pool by Sunday if u do two things. Order the TF 100 and promise to stop buying that c$&p at the pool store. Throw out the test strips.

    Read the abcs of pool water testing.

    Get a water sample and go have it tested at the pool store. Purchase nothing!!!!!

    Come back here and post the results. If they are close we can maybe help you get the pool acceptable for a day.

    How many gallons is your pool?

    Turn off the salt system for now.

    Go to Home Depot and buy 20 gallons of chlorinating liquid. Don't put it in the pool. After we get the pool store tests we will determine what you need?

    Post in the morning with you pool store results. Which I don't trust but we will work with.
    22k gallon IG pebblefina, Jandy 1.5 HP VS, Jandy CV Cartridge filter, Fafco solar panels, Polaris 360 supply side cleaner, waterfall

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    Rosemount 24' round AGP, 13,500 Gal, TF-100, Waterway Sand Filter 26"

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    The recommended kits are in the link provided. That is all of them. We do not recommend digital testers.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    My pool store uses the same crappy test strips I do. =(
    Rosemount 24' round AGP, 13,500 Gal, TF-100, Waterway Sand Filter 26"

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    There is an HTH 6 way drop based test kit that Walmart often carries that you could use to get a feel for the water condition while waiting for the good test kit that usually needs to be ordered.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    See if your Wally World he the test that Jason suggested. CYA, chlorine and Ph are ok for now.
    22k gallon IG pebblefina, Jandy 1.5 HP VS, Jandy CV Cartridge filter, Fafco solar panels, Polaris 360 supply side cleaner, waterfall

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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    Can you give me a web link to this walmart test kit please?
    Rosemount 24' round AGP, 13,500 Gal, TF-100, Waterway Sand Filter 26"

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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    It's this test kit. It tests for Total Chlorine, Bromine, pH, Total Alkalinity, Total Hardness, and Cyanuric Acid.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    Now throw away the test strips and we will see if we can get you a swim able pool on Sunday.

    How old is your daughter? Mine is 10 and has her party all planed for next month.
    22k gallon IG pebblefina, Jandy 1.5 HP VS, Jandy CV Cartridge filter, Fafco solar panels, Polaris 360 supply side cleaner, waterfall

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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    My daughter turned 7 yesterday. We have family from out of state as well as family friends coming to the party tomorrow. I'll try to go get this test kit soon from a Walmart in my area. My local store does not carry it but I see one further out that does.


    Can you give me some guidance on how to use that kit? I see the listed tests above in the post.

    As for current water status, it looks less cloudy and the crappy test strip says the alk came down a bit but is slightly high (maybe at 100 to 110 based on color) and the PH is about a 6.8. I just adjusted the input plastic adapter cover so it is spraying up some instead of to the right and slightly down. This is causing the water to bubble on the top of the pool. I'm hoping this aerates it to raise the PH which I read on one of your other links here.

    Do you want me to add any chemicals now or just wait for better test kit?

    Thanks for all of your input! I am looking forward to having you help me figure this out long term, and I don't have a problem buying your suggested kits etc.
    Rosemount 24' round AGP, 13,500 Gal, TF-100, Waterway Sand Filter 26"

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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    Wait until you test to add chemicals

    Aerating the water is good. While I have doubts about anything a test strip says it's simpler to drop ph.
    22k gallon IG pebblefina, Jandy 1.5 HP VS, Jandy CV Cartridge filter, Fafco solar panels, Polaris 360 supply side cleaner, waterfall

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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    Do you want me to add any chemicals now or just wait for better test kit?
    At this point, just wait on the kit.

    You will not hurt anything to add a small jug of Clorox each evening until you can post some test results and then we'll get started getting you off that PermaSalt and on your way to a sparkling pool.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    I followed some of your Permasalt links in the first post - startling by the standards of this forum... It seems to be a copper based system (hence your copper test strips) with biweekly (!) additions of a dichlor/'oxone' shock product, plus that clarifier bottle you mention. Despite the name, there is no SWG involved. Is that basically the system you've been following, with no other chlorine sources added in between those biweekly 'treatments'? I'm just trying to summarize, so others looking in on the thread can get an overview.

    The most important thing to prepare for in use of the hth kit is running the CYA test (I believe the kit only has enough reagent for two of these tests, so you don't want to waste them).

    Once you have a CYA level, you'll know how much liquid chlorine (bleach) to put in to have a sanitary pool - important for a party, as well as for long-term maintenance. As far as having the pool ready tomorrow, you need to focus on chlorine levels, and get a reasonable pH for swimmer comfort. Stop chasing the TA for the moment.

    Please read the links pooldv gave you (post #4), so you get a better understanding of what you are doing and why.
    18' x 48" ring top pool (Summer Escapes); 5500 gallons; set up June - October, stored during winter; Intex 2500 gph pump (B size cartridge filter) Hayward 21" sand filter + 1.5 hp single speed Powerflo Matrix pump (upgrade October 2016) *** K-2006 test kit, refills from tftestkits

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    j!!!!!!!! You will be SO glad you found TFP! Your wallet will be happy also! Please go get that walmart kit asap so we can start helping get a handle on your pool.

    When you get the kit post on here and we will walk you through how to do the tests.

    HUGS! We have your back!

    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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    poolnoob.ca's Avatar
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    I wouldn't rely on a system whose features includes "Does Not Convert Salt into Chlorine" and "Only Requires Adding Chemicals Every 2 Weeks". It's time to switch to liquid chlorine/bleach and proper testing. Best wishes.
    32,000L Fibreglass Leisure Pools IG 12.5'x23'x5' Pump: AstralPools BX1 1.0HP
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    Re: Need help balancing water for daughter's birthday party in 2 days

    Nothing else required on weekly basis. 1 bag and 1 bottle biweekly or weekly depending on pool size. Test water for ph copper and alk every 3 days and adjust with chemicals. Those were my instructions. The permasalt system had a cylinder that gets replaced every 6 mo.

    Wife is getting 2 test kits now. I'm at vet with a sick dog. Hope to get results ASAP for you guys and gals.

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