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Thread: CANNOT increase PH or alkalinity

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    elizabeth city, n.c.
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    CANNOT increase PH or alkalinity

    Over the past week I have used 18 lbs baking soda and one box of Borax -4lb 12 oz and 1 lb shock and have not been able to raise my readings.

    FC - 10
    TA - so low - no reading
    PH - below 6.2

    Pool water is clear and sparkling - no smell. Weather is normal for eastern N.C. temp 85 - 90 mostly sunny - no downpours last week - just occ showers a couple of days. Why won't the PH or alkalinity come up?

    13,000 gal fiberglass inground pool - Hayward 1hp super pump

    We do have a leak where the PVC pipe comes straight up out of the pump strainer/housing and goes to the filter. Would this effect the chemical balance of the pool?
    Hayward Super Pump Model SP160721M motor C48K2N143B1 - inground 33X14 fiberglass pool. Motor installed by licensed electrician 06/2012- mounted on concrete deck. Hard wired 220. No timer just off/on switch at the pool.

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: CANNOT increase PH or alkalinity

    Why won't the PH or alkalinity come up?
    You simply have not used enough baking soda or borax. Not sure how you are testing but there is no test that's reliable when your pH and TA is that low. I suggest you add at least another box of 20 mule Team (Which will raise both your TA and pH) and possible another until you get a pH in the 7's. When you do that. then test your TA and adjust if necessary.

    At some point, you should really get a dependable, high quality test kit and post ALL your test results to include CYA, CH, and CC's.......I assume you are just using strips?

    The leak and the Shock are irrelevant.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: CANNOT increase PH or alkalinity

    Diane,

    Welcome to TFP

    I agree with everything Dave has said...Especially the part about needing a good test kit. You can add borax to raise your pH (it will only raise TA very slightly) and baking soda to raise TA. Washing soda, or sodium carbonate (which can is found in most Walmarts), will raise both at the same time. It is also sold as pH-UP by pool stores but they mark up the price by as much as 4X. Keep adding the chemicals slowly and measure 30-45mins after additions to see where you are.

    How are you testing your water currently?

    You have come here in search of answers where others (pool stores) will just give you the run-around. In order to help you help yourself, you must get a good test kit. The good test kits TFP recommends are compared HERE. I suggest you either purchase a TF-100 from TFTestkits.net or you get yourself a Taylor K-2006 (from Amazon). The TF-100 is the better buy.

    How have you been chlorinating your swimming pool? I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that you have been using trichlor pucks and the typical method of pool stores with weekly shocking (dichlor or cal-hypo) along with daily floating pucks. The trichlor pucks are very acidic and it is not uncommon in a fiberglass or vinyl pool to have those pucks completely drop your pH and neutralize all of the waters alkalinity. They also cause other problems with proper chlorination by adding too much stabilizer.

    No matter as that is all just guessing until you can begin to test your own water and post results. If you do, there will be more then enough people here who will be happy to help you get your water balanced, clear and completely trouble free.

    Best wishes!!
    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    elizabeth city, n.c.
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    Re: CANNOT increase PH or alkalinity

    We use trichlor tabs in a chlorinator. When the FC tested 10 - very high, we turned the chlorinator off to try to get the FC reading down while we try to get PH and TA up! We had already ordered a Taylor Troubleshooter DPD Pool & Spa test kit K-1004-6, but it has not yet arrived. We have been using test strips and a two year old 5-way test kit from a pool store which we now see agents expiration date 8/2013.

    Thank you both for such a quick reply!
    Hayward Super Pump Model SP160721M motor C48K2N143B1 - inground 33X14 fiberglass pool. Motor installed by licensed electrician 06/2012- mounted on concrete deck. Hard wired 220. No timer just off/on switch at the pool.

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    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
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    Feb 2014
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    Re: CANNOT increase PH or alkalinity

    The kit you have ordered has some of what you need, but not a FAS-DPD test for FC and CC above 5 ppm. The complete test kits recommended here have them: Pool School - Test Kits Compared

    If it's not too late, you could cancel the order on that one and go with a TF-100 from tftestkits or a K-2006 from Taylor.
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
    40x20 Pool: 32K Gallons * Vinyl * Bleach Chlorination * Hayward S270T Sand Filter * Pentair SuperFlo 1 HP * Teledyne/Laars Heater * AquaVac Tigershark * TF-100 w/ SpeedStir
    Isolated Spa - 345 Gallons

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