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Thread: newbie with TF100 test results

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    newbie with TF100 test results

    Thanks for all the information on this forum. I have a 24,400 gallon chlorine pool. From what I have learned here, I was able to completely open and clean the filter grids successfully!!! So now, I am attempting to convert to the BBB method and eliminate my pool company completely. Bought the TF100 test kit based on the advice on this forum and ran my first test today. Here are the results:

    FC=6.5
    CC=0.5
    TC=7.0
    pH=7.5
    TA=160
    CH=240
    CYA=60

    Based on the instructions on the test kit, all the numbers above are within acceptable ranges except for TA, which is high. I have read several ways to lower TA, all of which sound similar to adding muriatic acid to lower pH and aerating. My questions are as follows:

    (1) Following the BBB method, what is the best source of muriatic acid and where is the best place to buy it cheaply?
    (2) The method for aerating sounds complicated. I have a decorative rock fountain at the head of my pool that recirculates the water when the pump is on. Will this suffice to aerate?
    (3) Are there any other numbers above that I need to pay attention to?
    (4) So far I have been using chlorine tabs from the pool company. I plan to switch to bleach. How much do I need to add weekly?

    Thanks for the help.
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
    Purex-Triton nautilus NS-36 DE filter;Pentair SM-20-2 multivalve
    MagneTek Centurion Switchless motor 1.5 HP
    Polaris

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    Welcome to the forum!

    Your FC is right where it should be based on your CYA level (see the chart in my sig). Question, what does your water look like?

    If your CC goes above .5 you should shock your pool. So if you notice the FC drop significantly, especially overnight, it could indicate something consuming the chlorine and you will need to shock, so keep an eye on that.

    Many people are able to run with a higher TA without it causing significant problems. If you notice your PH drifting up, or you need to add MA frequently, then that is when we recommend you lower the TA through the aeration/acid process. It's relatively straightforward, just time consuming. So if you want to see if your PH is stable or not....tis up to you.

    Hope this helps!

    BTW, can you please add your pool equipment/specs to your signature. Go to User Control Panel, then Profile, then Edit Signature. (Your signature is limited to 5 lines of text.) See my sig for an example of info we need.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    Quote Originally Posted by rohan
    (4) So far I have been using chlorine tabs from the pool company. I plan to switch to bleach. How much do I need to add weekly?
    Missed this one.

    Kinda depends, every pool's chlorine demand can be unique....you want to keep the FC in the 5-7 range and never below 5 or you will risk and algae bloom. Your shock level is 24.

    You should test the FC daily, also the PH should be tested daily. These will take you about 5 minutes, to test and add additional chlorine. Once you determine your FC level, use the Pool Calculator to determine how much bleach to add to raise the FC to the target of 7. Play with the Pool Calculator, it will come to be your best pool friend!

    Hope this makes sense!
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    Quote Originally Posted by rohan

    Based on the instructions on the test kit, all the numbers above are within acceptable ranges except for TA, which is high. I have read several ways to lower TA, all of which sound similar to adding muriatic acid to lower pH and aerating.
    Yep, adding the acid lowers the TA and then aerating then causes the pH come back up without having any impact on the TA. This is the ONLY way to lower TA.
    how-to-lower-ta-t5341.html

    My questions are as follows:

    (1) Following the BBB method, what is the best source of muriatic acid and where is the best place to buy it cheaply?
    Pool store, hardware store, big box like Lowes or Home Depot ( but be aware that some big boxes are now selling 15% instead of the 31% strength for the same price so READ THE LABEL...You want 20 Baume Muriatic acid (31.45%) NOT the 10 Baume stuff that is starting to appear. In my area the local pool store is actually cheapest so shop around!

    (2) The method for aerating sounds complicated. I have a decorative rock fountain at the head of my pool that recirculates the water when the pump is on. Will this suffice to aerate?
    If it really disturbes the surface of the water. Think of aeration like shaking up a bottle of club soda to make it go flat since that is what we are trying to do (drive off carbon dioxide gas). Anthing that creates a LOt of turbulance will work. You can put a submergible pump on your steps to shoot water in the air, attach a floating fountain to one of your returns (they are not very expensive and are great for parties!), throw in a bunch of kids and tell them to have splash fights, etc. If you read through the tread I posted above it dicusses ways to aerate and it's a bit more complete than the pool school article.

    (3) Are there any other numbers above that I need to pay attention to?
    You need to pay attention to all of the numbers! However, the rest of yours look good for right now.

    (4) So far I have been using chlorine tabs from the pool company. I plan to switch to bleach. How much do I need to add weekly?
    Chances are that you will need to add it daily or every other day. Most pools lose 1 to 2 ppm FC every day that needs to be replaced. Unless you have some way to do this automatically (such as a dosing pump or a SWG) it meand you have to dose daily. It's not a lot of work and after a very short while you learn how much chlorine is needed in your pools so we are really talking a bout 5 minutes a day here!
    Thanks for the help.
    Hope this helps!

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    Thanks for all your responses. The pool water looks crystal clear. Basically I should wait to see what my pH does and if it rises to frequently requiring MA treatments, then consider lowering TA through aeration-acid technique. And even though FC is fine at 6.5, consider shocking the pool as CCs are at 0.5. Is this accurate?

    (1) When shocking the pool do I simply put in my shock value of 24 into the pool calculator to determine how much bleach to add?

    (2) Add bleach directly into the pool near the return drain?

    (3) Would like to try to vacuum the bottom of the pool today (noticing some white powder that streaks clean to show the path of my polaris). Don't know how to do this. What setting do I put the multiport in? How do I connect my vacuum tube to the skimmer vacuum?
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
    Purex-Triton nautilus NS-36 DE filter;Pentair SM-20-2 multivalve
    MagneTek Centurion Switchless motor 1.5 HP
    Polaris

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    You probably don't really need to shock right now. If CC goes up any further, you should shock. I suspect that if you just add a little extra chlorine for a few days the CC level will go back to zero.

    If you do want to shock, there are directions on how to do that in this article at Pool School.

    It is best to add bleach by pouring it slowly in front of a return jet with the pump running.

    There are two ways to hook the vacuum hose up to the skimmer. By far the best way is with a vacuum plate, a piece of plastic that fits over the skimmer basket and has a hole where the vacuum hose plugs in. If you don't have a skimmer vacuum plate, you can remove the skimmer basket and plug the hose into the hole in the bottom of the skimmer. Sometimes there are two holes and you need to figure out which of them has suction and use that one.

    Before connecting the vacuum hose you want to make sure it is completely full of water and that the far end is underwater. You don't want any air getting to the pump. After that, you just push the vacuum slowly along the bottom of the pool and it should vacuum up any debris. In some cases, particularly when you have several skimmers, there may be some valves that you need to turn off in order to get enough suction to vacuum.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    I think you are fine to ignore the .5ppm CC's. It's only if your CC's get to 1.0 or more that we think it's time to shock. The fact that your water is clear reinforces that.

    Yes, the pool calculator will tell you how much bleach if you put in 1)the size of your pool 2)the strength of the bleach and 3)the desired ppm (shock value) yu wish to reach.

    Into the return stream works fine....just make sure the bleach is distributed quickly and evenly.

    I do not vacuum from the skimmer so others will be along to help with that connection. I am a little concerned about the white powder on your pool floor. After you vacuum it up, let us know if it reappears.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  8. Back To Top    #8
    Guest

    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    re: the white powder on your pool bottom. Have you recently shocked with cal hypo?
    Also, when you cleaned your DE filter did you inspect the grids for any tears or holes?

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    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    Waterbear - you are amazing!! Yes - 3 weeks ago I shocked with 2 lbs of a product from Bioguard called Burnout Extreme, active ingredient is Calcium Hypochlorite!! Did I screw things up here? And I did inspect the grids when I cleaned the DE filter and there were no tears. And come to think of it, no white powder for a week after that until I shocked....Do I just vacuum it up, or leave it be and it will dissolve in time? And going forward, should I use Bioguard (have a whole box ), or shift completely to bleach at shock value? I raised my FC from 6.5 to 7.0 using the pool calculator and bleach today successfully!!! And it lowered by CCs to 0....
    24,400 gallon irregular shaped gunite chlorine pool
    Purex-Triton nautilus NS-36 DE filter;Pentair SM-20-2 multivalve
    MagneTek Centurion Switchless motor 1.5 HP
    Polaris

  10. Back To Top    #10
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    Shocking with cal-hypo tends to leave behind some calcium dust. It isn't dangerous, just unsightly. It won't dissolve unless you lower either your PH or TA levels. Lowering TA might be a good idea.

    The main issue with using cal-hypo is keep an eye on your CH level, which will go up a little every time you use cal-hypo. When your CH level gets high enough it is time to stop using cal-hypo.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Guest

    Re: newbie with TF100 test results

    Quote Originally Posted by rohan
    Waterbear - you are amazing!!
    Aw shucks! T'weren't nothin'!

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