I have a newly constructed pool with pebble finish (one week ago) and I am having difficulty understanding the proper pool chemistry. After running several tests, it indicates that I have a low total alkalinity (40). However, an acid demand test shows I need about 3 qt. of muriatic acid.
From what I've read adding sodium bicarbonate will raise the total alkalinity but the adding additional acid in conjunction with sodium bicarbonate seems counter intuitive.
Why would I need acid and sodium bicarbonate at the same time? Does this have anything to do with the newly curing pebble finish?