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Thread: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

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    odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    New pool owner since March and this is occurring. My pool builder and pool store I've taken water samples have not seen this before so I'm at a loss. They are both trying to ask around to see what could be going on. It is not a soapy foam as it is more air bubbles too me but the large volume is a concern.


    https://goo.gl/photos/Kjra2HWgxHprUivB8

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    We are all happy to help but we can't tell you anything without knowing anything. Please let us know what equipment you have, what your methods are, and list out the water test results.
    Curtis- 20k gallon IG gunnite/plaster with hot tub/waterfall and "grotto"
    All Jandy equipment: 60sqft DE filter - 399k btu natural gas heater - Stealth pumps - iAquaLink RS8.
    Polaris 9400 on patrol.
    TF-100 in da house/TFP method in effect: FC=4-6, pH=7.5, TA=80, CH=250, CYA=50, Borate=50, CSI=-0.21

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    umpalumpajay's Avatar
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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    the only time i've seen that in my spa is when my wife bought splashless bleach by accident. defnitely need more info.
    12000g pool + 1000g spa. Jandy 2.0hp epump + separate Jandy pump for Sheer Descent. Jandy CV Cartridge Filter. Jandy Lxi gas heater. Tropical Breeze PebbleTec. Aqualink. Aquapure SWG. Nature 2. The Pool Cleaner 2x. Taylor K-2005.

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    Not sure why my signature didn't save all my pool equipment so added below. I was also hoping the link to the pictures and video would offer some insight.

    18,500 gallon in ground with pebble sheen plaster. 3-1/2 ' x 7' deep
    18-1/2 ' x 35 -1/2, 460 Sf pool area
    Pentair intelliflo variable speed pump
    2.5 HP motor for water features
    Booster pump for Paramount pv3 In Floor Cleaner
    420 sf cartridge filter
    400,000 btu heater
    Last edited by gss1537; 10-08-2015 at 08:25 PM. Reason: signature didn't save

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    Okay now that we know what equipment you have, what products have you been using to maintain your water? Do you have some current numbers for us?


    Curtis- 20k gallon IG gunnite/plaster with hot tub/waterfall and "grotto"
    All Jandy equipment: 60sqft DE filter - 399k btu natural gas heater - Stealth pumps - iAquaLink RS8.
    Polaris 9400 on patrol.
    TF-100 in da house/TFP method in effect: FC=4-6, pH=7.5, TA=80, CH=250, CYA=50, Borate=50, CSI=-0.21

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    image.jpg
    The store hasn't seen that type of bubbling before. She was concerned because my readings the last couple months have been low on chlorine. She suggested shutting chlorinator off and add 2 tablets to each skimmer basket to see if chlorine levels rise.

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    A couple of things to start with. You need to get your CH up and your pH down. You need to get your CYA way down and your FC way up. Your pool is debatably not safe to swim in with those levels. Get your chemistry right and then we can address the foam IF it's still an issue. I find it hard to believe that you don't have any algae and that your CC level is only 0.4 with your CYA being that high and your FC being that low. You would probably benefit from a nice SLAM this weekend. Definitely get your SWG checked out.


    Curtis- 20k gallon IG gunnite/plaster with hot tub/waterfall and "grotto"
    All Jandy equipment: 60sqft DE filter - 399k btu natural gas heater - Stealth pumps - iAquaLink RS8.
    Polaris 9400 on patrol.
    TF-100 in da house/TFP method in effect: FC=4-6, pH=7.5, TA=80, CH=250, CYA=50, Borate=50, CSI=-0.21

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    Hello gss1537,

    I too, as Jay above said, think it looks like the foam that gets formed from using splashless, low splash bleach, but can't be sure until we know what's been added in there. Kind of looking like a big ole bubble bath right at the moment, isn't it?

    To help clear it up faster, I would recommend getting a bucket, cup, or something, and scooping out all the foam that you can.

    I have just a few questions:

    What chemicals have you recently used in your pool?

    Have you recently cleaned it with anything?

    What are you using to chlorinate your pool? Powder shock, 3" pucks, liquid chlorine, etc.?

    I agree with Al above that IF the pool store testing is correct your pH is too high and needs to be lowered to 7.2ppm, use the Pool math calculator to see how much acid needs to be added to do this. http://www.troublefreepool.com/calc.html

    Your CH is low at 187, and will need to be adjusted to the 250-350 range.

    Your CYA is too high to properly maintain your pool if that 144 is correct. (The only way to remove it is to drain about 50% or more of the water out and refill with fresh water to get it at a manageable level), but of course knowing how inaccurate pool store testing can be, we want to be certain what your exact CYA level is 1st.

    Your chlorine is way too low for that CYA, if it is correct, and the chlorine needs to be raised to around 14-20ppm.

    Your pH and CH at those levels can damage your pool surface and your equipment, and that high CYA is not going to allow you to be able to keep your chlorine level high enough to prevent algae and bacteria from growing in there . http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...art-slam-shock

    The single best thing you can do for yourself, and your pool, IMO, is to get your own test kit, and to start testing your pool yourself, instead of using the pool store testing, as their tests are very likely not accurate.

    We recommend 1 of the following 2 test kits ONLY

    1)TF-100 which can be purchased from http://tftestkits.net/TF-100-Test-Kit-p4.html
    or
    2)Taylor K-2006 which can also be purchased from http://tftestkits.net/Taylor-K-2006-p27.html as well as various other places online, and some of your local pool stores may also sell them.

    Due to their reliability these are the only 2 test kits we recommend you use. Getting one of these kits will be the single best investment you can make to accurately maintain your pool/spa.

    Please review this link: http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...ater-chemistry

    We will do our best to help you figure out what is going on with the foaming, and help you get your pool chemicals adjusted correctly, so they aren't risking damaging your pool, etc. and are safe to be swimming in, but you won't be able to use our methods, and the pool store methods too as they are different. (so you will need to pick one or the other, but not both).

    But if you want us to help teach you our methods of pool management we will be more than happy to do so, as soon as you test your levels using one of the recommended test kits, so we can see where they really are at.
    Using the Pool Math Calculator http://www.troublefreepool.com/calc.html and only until your recommended test kit arrives,

    1)I'd recommend you use Muriatic Acid (per pool math calculation) in front of a return with the pump running (Be very careful when handling MA and avoid breathing the fumes)to lower your pH from 8.1ppm to 7.2ppm.

    Sweep/brush the pool bottom below where you add incase any settles, and wait at least 30mins with the pump running between each chemical add

    2)EDIT:Add 1 gallon enough Regular Liquid bleach ONLY per day (active ingredient needs to say Sodium Hypochlorite), (Do not use low splash or splashless bleach because it will foam and you will again have a bubble bath effect). Do this with the pump running, slowly pour in front of the return, and sweep the floor where you poured it in case any settles until you can test your levels using your new recommended test kit.

    This will prevent the issue from getting any worse until the levels can be properly tested. If the chlorine/cya levels aren't adjusted accurately it is not safe to swim in it, and you are going to without a doubt end up with an algae outbreak if you don't get the right amount of chlorine in there very soon, that is if you don't already have algae growing in there. END EDIT
    It's very possible you already have algae/bacteria growing in there with those levels, depending on how long it has been that low, but only time will tell.

    3)You'll need to adjust the CH to the 250-350ppm.

    Test all your levels when your new kit arrives, list them here, and we'll go from there.

    If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask because we are all here to help you.

    I hope this helps, and have a wonderful night
    Last edited by Crackerjack4u; 10-09-2015 at 09:37 AM. Reason: instrction changed due to high cya and need to drain in near future.
    24' Round x 4.5 ft deep AGP (15,200 Gallons), Vinyl Liner, Hayward Vari Flo XL Sand Filter- (model SP0714T1),
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, SLAM & the Chlorine/CYA CHART. Support this Site! TFP Totally Rocks.

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    Swampwoman's Avatar
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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    Welcome, GSS! gorgeous pool you have there!

    I saw foaming like that once at a vacation spa after a party It is not exclusive to splashless bleach, it can also represent a water quality issue combined with lower calcium.

    It definitely needs to be slammed to oxidize everything, then sanitized properly per the cya:FC chart in my signature on a daily basis.

    But as crackerjack mapped out, the first step in getting control of the water quality is the proper test kit so that you're able to read your cya and higher FC levels while slamming, and a partial water change to (with SWG) get to about 70 CYA.

    I am betting that a 50% water change followed by a proper SLAM (shock and maintain) will eradicate the problem, but it sounds like thereafter you may also need to check and see if your salt cell needs cleaning/is operating properly. You won't be able to tell until you've cleaned up the water to give it a chance to produce enough chlorine. Don't run your SWG while slamming...use only liquid chlorine or straight bleach (NOT splashless bleach.)
    In ground extended Grecian, 22,000 gal, Hayward 220t sand filter, vinyl liner, dolphin m4 supreme.
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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    thank all of you for responding. I will need to get a test kit ordered so that will take a few days to get it.

    I noticed the term SWG used and that is Salt Water Generator, correct? I have a chlorine pool and not salt. I had some algae about half a month ago but got that under control and put new filters in 9/26. I say it is under control because nothing is visible.

    I am using the 3" tablets in the chlorinator.

    here is the chemicals i have used recently so not sure if that would attribute to the foaming effect.
    http://www.lowes.com/ProductDisplay?...llow&cId=PDIO1

    http://www.lowes.com/pd_649764-1772-...=50333041&pl=1

    http://www.lowes.com/pd_649762-1772-...=50333039&pl=1

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    Quote Originally Posted by gss1537 View Post
    She suggested shutting chlorinator off .
    My fault, I read this and thought you meant SWG
    Curtis- 20k gallon IG gunnite/plaster with hot tub/waterfall and "grotto"
    All Jandy equipment: 60sqft DE filter - 399k btu natural gas heater - Stealth pumps - iAquaLink RS8.
    Polaris 9400 on patrol.
    TF-100 in da house/TFP method in effect: FC=4-6, pH=7.5, TA=80, CH=250, CYA=50, Borate=50, CSI=-0.21

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    Good job pulling the trigger on a proper test kit. If those levels on the pool store report are correct, you still have algae. You just can't see it yet. You should probably stop using 3" inch tablets because that's just going to raise your CYA even more. I would wait until you get your kit and know what CYA actually is before start draining. None of those chemicals you're using will cause that much foam. That algaecide will foam a little (even though it says no-foam) but not that much. That "chlorinating liquid" is the only one of those 3 chemicals you need to buy in the future. There is a good possibility that the foam is a combination of a few things, one of them being low calcium like Swampwoman said.
    Curtis- 20k gallon IG gunnite/plaster with hot tub/waterfall and "grotto"
    All Jandy equipment: 60sqft DE filter - 399k btu natural gas heater - Stealth pumps - iAquaLink RS8.
    Polaris 9400 on patrol.
    TF-100 in da house/TFP method in effect: FC=4-6, pH=7.5, TA=80, CH=250, CYA=50, Borate=50, CSI=-0.21

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    TFP Guide


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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    Hello gss1537,

    Thanks for the info on the chemical adds. I'm researching them now to see if one or a combo could be the contributing culprit to the foaming issue.

    +1 to Swampwoman, and AL's comments above.

    If you have any 3" tablets in the chlorinator now please go ahead and remove those, and use ONLY liquid chlorine (bleach), no powder shocks, or pucks because they will continue to contribute, and add to your already too high CYA level.

    Also please click on Settings at the top right of your screen, then Edit Settings under the MY settings bold tab and ensure your pool info is in there. if it's Not in there please add it; if it is already there, please ensure you click Save Signature, and also that little check box that says Show your Signature is checked at the bottom of your Quick reply screen. Perhaps that will get your Signature following you like it should .

    Order your kit today if possible because the longer those levels sit uncorrected the more chance you have of plaster damage to your new pool, and we certainly don't want that to happen if we can prevent it.

    Just a FYI-The TF100 gives you a lot more bang for your buck and with a potential slam most likely going to be needed. You might want to also consider getting the XL option for this kit as to not run out of supplies while Slamming. When you are on the TF100 order page there is a little box on that page that says XL option just check that option to add it to your order. http://tftestkits.net/TF-100-Test-Kit-p4.html

    EDIT: Also since you are going to have to do at least a partial drain and refill to get that CYA level down to keep from just dumping money down the drain, so to speak, let's just have you only add 1 gallon of bleach to your pool daily until your test kit comes in. That should be enough to keep the issues from getting any worse until you can properly test them. END EDIT

    I hope this helps and have a wonderful day
    Last edited by Crackerjack4u; 10-09-2015 at 09:42 AM. Reason: Adding 1 gallon of bleach daily till test kit arrives.
    24' Round x 4.5 ft deep AGP (15,200 Gallons), Vinyl Liner, Hayward Vari Flo XL Sand Filter- (model SP0714T1),
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, SLAM & the Chlorine/CYA CHART. Support this Site! TFP Totally Rocks.

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    I think I found my culprit on the bubbles from my pics and video. I am still waiting on my test kit to arrive and just adding liquid bleach since then so i had some time to experiment.

    I filled a glass of water and added a few drops of this to the glass and it bubbled. I'm going to try filling our bath tub with this stuff tonight and see if it creates a bubbling/foaming effect.

    http://www.lowes.com/pd_649764-1772-...=50333041&pl=1
    Pool built March 2015 - 19K gal Chlorine, IG pebble sheen, intelliflo variable speed pump, 420 SF Pentair cartridge filter(Pleatco), Booster pump for Paramount pv3 In Floor Cleaning system, 2 hp pump for water features, Auto Fill valve, 19' W x 36' L, 3-1/2' to 7' depth, 400,000 BTU heater for spa

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    Re: odd Bubbles in Spa and Pool

    Quote Originally Posted by gss1537 View Post
    I think I found my culprit on the bubbles from my pics and video. I am still waiting on my test kit to arrive and just adding liquid bleach since then so i had some time to experiment.

    I filled a glass of water and added a few drops of this to the glass and it bubbled. I'm going to try filling our bath tub with this stuff tonight and see if it creates a bubbling/foaming effect.

    http://www.lowes.com/pd_649764-1772-...=50333041&pl=1
    That is essentially a phosphate remover and it will cause some foam in your pool after adding. It's usually only where water splashes though, which wouldn't explain your hot tub overflowing with foam. However, if you're using the recommended dose of 8oz/10,000 gallons once a week, there's no way it will foam as much as your pool is. IF that is what's causing the foam, then that's an easy fix because once you get your chemistry under control you won't have any algae and you will probably never use algae treatment again (unless you get lots of organic material in your pool often).
    Curtis- 20k gallon IG gunnite/plaster with hot tub/waterfall and "grotto"
    All Jandy equipment: 60sqft DE filter - 399k btu natural gas heater - Stealth pumps - iAquaLink RS8.
    Polaris 9400 on patrol.
    TF-100 in da house/TFP method in effect: FC=4-6, pH=7.5, TA=80, CH=250, CYA=50, Borate=50, CSI=-0.21

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