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Thread: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

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    New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    I only have the HTH test kit because my TFTestkits kit hasn't come in yet. On Fri when the PB came out and started the pool they only did a "partial start". I know they added acid and shock to the pool and turned on the pump and inline chlorinator. I don't know how much of the chemicals were added. We tested with the HTH kit yesterday just because we were curious to look at some numbers. The ph was 8 and the TC (only cl test available with the HTH kit) was 0. That concerned me because it tells me that there was no cc or fc in the pool. we used the pool math and decided to add 1/2 jug of bleach to the pool to at least get some chlorine in there. I knew the PB was coming back out today to finish added chemicals and turn on the skimmers.

    When I got home I checked the pool and found two bags of stabilizer hanging from the returns in the pool. I emailed the PB and asked specifically what chemicals were added today and if it was harmful to the plaster for the bags of stabilizer to be touching the wall of the pool. The response was
    "Yes, the powder in the bag is stabilizer. And no it will not stain the
    Pebble Tec.
    He added 1 gallon of Acid to bring the PH down. The pH needs needs to come
    back down before any more chlorine is added to the pool."

    Levels tested with HTH after PB came today
    ph 7.2
    TA 130
    TC 0
    We aren't doing pool school until later in the week. I did email and ask how much stabilizer is in the socks but no response yet. I do not think that we have any warranty period where we have to go by their maintenance but I was trying to wait until pool school before takin over and using the TFP method. Dh is on board with testing ourselves and using the TFP method as well. Why would chlorine raise the oh? Shouldn't we have some chlorine in the pool? Should we add some bleach tonight ?
    24,000 gallon free form IG gunite pool w/8' round raised spa. 700 sq ft pea gravel decking. Tahoe blue pebble tech. Pentair 2HP Sulerflo pump. CCP 420 cartridge filter. Polaris 280. 320 inline chlorinator. Mastertemp 400,000 btu heater. Pentair LED light in pool and spa. Easy Touch automated system.

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New pool; startup done by PB. Have questions!

    You have some good questions and concerns. First, let's start with this page Pool School - Start-up New Plaster. This should answer many of your questions. Keep in mind though that you must follow your builders advice or recommendations to not void any warranty. That is #1. I would think they are liable for a certain period of time in case your plaster falters, but at least this page will give you some more info to reflect on. Between their next visit, perhaps you can ask about adding some bleach to avoid an algae outbreak. The pH has nothing to do with bleach, only that you don't want to add them both at the same time. Separate additions of acid and bleach by at least 30 minutes with the pump running and that is fine.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Oh, and hanging the granular stabilizer by socks is fine. You can squeeze the socks from time to time as well to help them dissipate the stabilizer. They won't show-up on tests for about a week. By then you should have your test kit and can check yourself.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Re: New pool; startup done by PB. Have questions!

    I have read the plaster start up but I will look at it again. I feel like the more times I read pool school and other threads the more understanding I am having. I guess my biggest concern right now is that there is no chlorine showing up on the TC test. I will ask tomorrow if they plan on adding any more chlorine now that the ph is down some. I would think there should be some chlorine in the pool since the online chlorinator is turned on. I guess I will have to wait until I get my test kit on Fri to be able to test more accurately.

    Again, the bag of stabilizer is ok sitting against the wall of the pool? I thought I had read that it should be out in the skimmer to avoid staining.

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New pool; startup done by PB. Have questions!

    If you are more comfortable adjusting or moving the sock(s) so they are not resting on the new plaster, by all means you should be able to do that. Yes, the granules are acid, but generally it has been safe. I doubt your PB will have a problem if you move the sock(s) so it's suspended away from the wall. If you put the socks in the skimmer, make sure they don't stop the flow of water to the pump. As the start-up pages recommends, chlorine would be added SLOWLY after 72 hours. If your pool was just officially started Friday, you are just outside that range. If your PB is closed for the day, call them tomorrow morning and ask if you can add a little regular bleach to avoid algae, and confirm how much they suggest. Again, this is just to protect you. Keep good notes. The pH will continue to rise for a few months as the plaster cures, so you'll need to have acid handy at all times.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
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    Re: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    Got the rest of my test kit in today and here are my first results!
    FC 1.5
    CC 0.5
    ph 7.8
    TA 130
    CYA <30 (black dot never disappeared)

    We had pool school yesterday. The pool is ours to maintain how we want. I asked about any guidelines for warranty and there are none. (besides the pebble tec warranty guidelines but that doesn't have anything to do with chemicals)

    PB added 4lbs of stabilizer in socks to the pool on Tues 9/8 and the inline chlorinator with trichlor pucks was started up on Fri 9/4. I know that CYA takes a week to show up but I was expecting at least something to show up since the pucks have been turned on for a week? How do I know what to target my FC for if I don't know what my CYA is? Should I just shoot for a target of 4? The stabilizer has only dissolved about 1/2 way; I have been squeezing the bag a few times a day.
    24,000 gallon free form IG gunite pool w/8' round raised spa. 700 sq ft pea gravel decking. Tahoe blue pebble tech. Pentair 2HP Sulerflo pump. CCP 420 cartridge filter. Polaris 280. 320 inline chlorinator. Mastertemp 400,000 btu heater. Pentair LED light in pool and spa. Easy Touch automated system.

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    Re: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    Alright! You have your pool to yourself and are testing on your own. Perfect. So let's see now:
    CYA - Yes it takes about a week to show-up on testing. Typically when we add stabilizer, we consider our amount good for that target and feed the pool bleach based on that target. Since the PB did the adding, be safe. We'll base the FC on a target of 30 for now and can adjust later.
    FC - So with a predicted CYA of 30, your FC should be 4 based on the Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart. It's okay to go a little over that, but certainly never below 2-3. That's when algae can show-up. Personally, I would not let my FC drop below 4.
    pH is as high as it can/should be. Be prepared to always have some muriatic acid on-hand to keep pH around 7.4-7.5. When it creeps-up to 7.7-7.8, it's time to dose with some acid. SAFETY - Always separate acid and bleach additions by at least 30 minutes with pump running.
    TA is okay for now. The more you add acid to lower pH, the TA will come-down as well. That's okay even if it drops to about 80 or so.
    CH (?) - You'll need to test and watch that one closely since you have new plaster. Too high can cause scaling. Too low can damage your plaster. You'll want yours between 250-350ppm.

    As for the pucks, you can leave them in there for now, but not too long. While some pucks/tabs will help to lower pH slightly, they can really raise CYA, so we have to watch that. I know you have an initial CYA target of 30 (for now), but in TX it's not uncommon to go higher to protect the FC. Once your CYA gets to about 50, make sure there are no pucks in-use.

    I hope this wasn't too much brain overload. Post back if you still have questions. Congrats on the new pool!
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Re: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    No, that's a great help! I had already figured my pool math for a CYA of 30 so I just need to do some shopping and adding to the pool. I will have to test CH. Forgot that one. Thanks!
    24,000 gallon free form IG gunite pool w/8' round raised spa. 700 sq ft pea gravel decking. Tahoe blue pebble tech. Pentair 2HP Sulerflo pump. CCP 420 cartridge filter. Polaris 280. 320 inline chlorinator. Mastertemp 400,000 btu heater. Pentair LED light in pool and spa. Easy Touch automated system.

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    Re: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    The four pounds of Stabilizer that the PB added will only put you at a CYA of 20. Each puck used will add about 1.4 to that number. So until your readings stabilize, just make sure to keep your FC around 4.
    chiefwej
    Tucson, AZ
    16x36 rectangular (19k) Pebble Tec play pool/spa, Pentair Intelliflo VS 011018, Super II 2hp (spa), Aqua Rite T-15 SWG, Pro Grid 60 DE, Hayward H400 & Heliocol Solar heating, A&A infloor system, fill water w/high CH and TA, 50 ppm borates,TF-100 test kit

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    Re: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    Ok, I just looked and I only have a test for Total Hardness that came with my HTH test kit. I had only ordered what I needed from TFTest kits to supplement my HTH kit. Is TH and CH the same or do I need to order the CH test stuff as well?
    Went ahead and tested TH and it was 80
    24,000 gallon free form IG gunite pool w/8' round raised spa. 700 sq ft pea gravel decking. Tahoe blue pebble tech. Pentair 2HP Sulerflo pump. CCP 420 cartridge filter. Polaris 280. 320 inline chlorinator. Mastertemp 400,000 btu heater. Pentair LED light in pool and spa. Easy Touch automated system.

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    I suspect it's supposed to be the same (hardness), but I've never used that portion of that kit, and honestly not sure how reliable it is. Let's see if someone else chimes-in.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Just in case, here is the info on raising CH if you need it: Calcium hardness can be raised with calcium chloride or calcium chloride dihydrate. They are available in some areas as Peladow, Dowflake, Tetra Flake, or Tetra 94, often sold as a deicer by hardware stores, and some big box stores, in colder climates. Pool stores will carry either calcium chloride or calcium chloride dihydrate under a variety of names, including Hardness Plus, Balance Pak 300, Calcium Hardness Increaser, etc. Calcium products should be spread across the surface of the deep end of the pool.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    I see no one else has replied about the HTH hardness test, Is this how you tested:
    For the hardness test. Rinse and fill the plastic cylinder to the 25mL mark.
    Add 5 drops from the blue capped bottle that says "add 5 drops"
    Swirl to mix - it should turn pink/red if there is hardness.
    Use the other blue capped bottle to add 1 drop at a time until the sample turns blue. swirl while adding the drops.
    Multiply the number of drops it took to turn it blue by 10.
    Have you tested a 2nd time just to be sure? You definitely want to be in that 250-350 range. This might just be the time, with a brand new pool/plaster, to order the TF-100 or Taylor K-2006. You need that reliability and probably don't want to take a chance on an inaccurate reading causing you to add to much or too less of something to the pool.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Re: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    Yes that is how I tested. My question is if the total hardness test is the same thing as the calcium hardness test?

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New pool; 1st test results with new test kit

    Basically, the answer seems to be "no", they are not the same. I found this on a previous thread related specifically to the HTH testing:
    Total hardness is the sum of calcium hardness and magnesium hardness. For example, a lot of "test strips" report TH instead of CH. The ratio of calcium to magnesium varies. As an approximation you can multiply TH by two thirds to get a rough estimate of CH."
    I believe one of the reagents we use in the recommended kits (TF-100 and Taylor K--2006) neutralizes the magnesium, therefor giving you an exact CH reading.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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