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Thread: Newbie at pool maintenance

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Oct 2015
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    Chandler, AZ
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    Newbie at pool maintenance

    I have just acquired a home with a pool / spa, and starting to learn about it and would like to maintain it myself. I live in Chandler (Phoenix), AZ.

    IG 20k gallon plaster pool (30' x 16' x 6') with spill-over spa (6'), circa 2005
    2HP WhisperFlo pump w/ AOSmith Century Centurion motor, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge Filter
    3HP for Spa, 3HP for jets?3/4HP motor for misters
    PoolVac In-floor cleaning system

    Re: SWC, although a Zodiac LM2-40 controller is there, but no electrodes in the water path. I assume they can't be hidden underneath (or elsewhere)?

    I got the Taylor K-2006 testkit, and have the following readings:

    Date Temp
    (F)
    FC (ppm) CC (ppm) pH Total Alkinity
    (ppm)
    Calc hardness (ppm) CYA
    (ppm)
    Sat. index Comments
    Ideal range <82F Min: 1.0
    Ideal: 2-4
    0
    Max: 0.2
    Min: 7.2
    7.4-7.6
    Max: 7.8
    Min: 60
    Ideal: 80-120
    Max: 180
    Min: 100
    150-400
    Max: 800
    Min: 10
    30-50
    Max:100
    151108 72 1.4 0?
    ~0.2?
    8.0
    Acid demand test: 3 drops of R0005 to neutral 7.4.
    140 550 110 0.91 Need
    1.6 pt of 10% Cl, 1.72 qt of Muriatic acid for pH. 1.6 gal of Muriatic acid for TAlk.


    For the last 2 weeks, I have been using Clorox 3" tablets (XtraBlue from Costco) while waiting for the test kit.

    Poolmath with my readings has 3 main suggestions:
    - add Chlorine, makes sense. I'll start with buying Clorox from Costco), will look for pure Cl later.
    - add Muriatic acid, makes sense.
    - drain 64% of water to reduce CYA.

    The 3rd recommendation is where I am wondering if I can live without it. Firstly, because I don't know how to drain the pool yet, plus the cost of 13k gallons of water must be quite a bit! Thoughts on this from senior folks here.

    Soon I'll also need to learn how to look at the filter I have, and how to clean / maintain it.
    IG 20k gallon plaster pool (30' x 16' x 6') with spill-over spa (6'), circa 2005
    2HP WhisperFlo pump w/ AOSmith Century Centurion motor, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge Filter
    3HP for Spa,3/4HP motor for misters, PoolVac In-floor cleaning system
    In sunny Chandler, AZ

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    Hi Botham,
    Welcome to TFP! It's obvious you've done your homework!
    A couple of comments....

    I think you are missing the CYA/FC relationship and have targeted too low of a FC for a CYA of 110.

    the high CYA will be a bit problematic in that you need to keep the FC in the correct ratio with the CYA level. So that means you have to add more chlorine which also costs dollars. The minimum FC should be 7.5 and "target" level is 11% of the CYA level. So your recommended FC range is ... 8-12. About 281 ozs of 10% liquid chlorine. (if CYA is 30, then 2-3 as you posted would be correct).
    If you can maintain that FC, then you should be good and not have to drain any water - yet.

    Dont use any other forms of Chlorine other than liquid. Trichlor products will continue to add CYA to the water (6ppm CYA for every 10 of FC), and Dichlor products will add calcium.

    Your CH is also high, and is a heavy contributor to your high Saturation Index. The only way to lower this is also, yup, to replace water with water much lower in CH.

    Dont use any other forms of Chlorine other than liquid. Trichlor products will continue to add CYA to the water (6ppm CYA for every 10 of FC), and Dichlor products will add calcium.

    You will likely need to lower your TA, expecially if you dont have the option of replacing any water right now. TA buffers how quickly the pH rises and plays a large role in the CSI (the higher the CH, then typically, the lower the TA should be, to a point). Its not a critical and and over time as you continue to use Muriatic to lower the pH, it will also lower the TA at the same time.

    Overall, given the CYA and the CH levels and the challenges of those, I would recommend to go ahead and bite the bullet, and replace some water. That's me though. There are many others here who have managed to lower the CYA and CH by careful water chemistry management and replacement of water a little at a time either intentionally or by dilution by rain, over a long period of time.

    As for cleaning your filter. I have a Pentair C&C too.
    First make sure the pump is off!
    there is a drain plug in the bottom of the filter. Take that out.
    Open the pressure release on top of teh filter by squeezing and turning the thing the pressure gauge is mounted to and let the water drain.
    Next, use a wrench and loosen the clamp around the middle of the filter and remove it.
    Then take the top of the tank off.
    then pull the top Cross shaped manifold off the top of the filter cartridges and pull out the cartridges. Just pull it straight up.

    When you put it all back together, be sure to use lubricant on the big rubber gasket around the filter. Dont use petroleum based lube like vaseline. Use teflon or siclicon based lube only.

    Hope this helps get you started...

    dd
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

  3. Back To Top    #3

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    Northern IL
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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    Welcome! Here is some quick stuff. Your new TFP friends can go into more details later.

    Is your water crystal clear?

    Did you test CYA with post #8 here? Extended Test Kit Directions

    Please go to Pool School to clarify "ideal" chemistry levels: Pool School - Recommended Levels

    Then also please check the following link and add liquid chlorine/bleach ASAP: Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart

    "Pure" CL is liquid chlorine or bleach. Please no more tabs and avoid bags of "shock".

    Again, welcome!

  4. Back To Top    #4
    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    Hi! SO glad you found TFP and got a good test kit! Nice job!

    How does your water look right now?

    Clorox from Costco or Greater Value (Walmart store brand) work great! If your easy to get to pool store had chlorine that would work also. Just make sure to compare the price in your area to find your best bet.

    Sorry but you are going to have to drain to get your CYA down. Not a happy thought but...............I have a chart for you.

    Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart

    As you can see the more CYA your water has the more FC you will need.

    You can do it in stages if you really want to but in the end it will take more refill water but it will break it up some.

    Show us a pic of your pool please.

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

  5. Back To Top    #5

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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    Wow, overwhelmed with the quick response Thanks.

    Should have mentioned that my pool looks very clean and blue. And today, the spa felt very nice with no skin irritation, etc. Didn't go in the pool, too cold.

    MarianParoo, I measured CYA with the instructions in the toolkit, which sound similar to the link your provided.

    Sounds like learning to drain water is the next important sub-project.

    I am setting up tapatalk on my cell phone, so I can easily post pics. Will do that by tomorrow.
    IG 20k gallon plaster pool (30' x 16' x 6') with spill-over spa (6'), circa 2005
    2HP WhisperFlo pump w/ AOSmith Century Centurion motor, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge Filter
    3HP for Spa,3/4HP motor for misters, PoolVac In-floor cleaning system
    In sunny Chandler, AZ

  6. Back To Top    #6
    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    You can rent a sub pump or just buy a cheap one from Harbor Freight. I vote for buying one just so you have it if needed and there is not time limit that way.

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

  7. Back To Top    #7
    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    The best way to drain is using a sump pump as kim mentions.
    they can be rented at contractor rental supply houses. Some HDs rent them too and harbor freight sells them cheap.

    Thats really be easiest way to go about doing it if you do it all at once.

    You could do it over a period of time, removing the filters and remove the plug in the bottom of it, then turn on the pump until it starts sucking air when the water gets too low.
    Then put more water in the pool and repeat. This isnt the optimum way of doing it because in the end, you end up using more fresh water than if you were to just do a large drain all at once.

    However you could do that over a period of say a couple months or so, so that you dont get such a big hit on your water bill all at once.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Botham,
    It would be interested also, in testing your Tap Water for CH and TA. Doing that would give you something of what to expect in how much your CH might get reduced by water replacement.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

  8. Back To Top    #8

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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    Quote Originally Posted by Divin Dave View Post
    The best way to drain is using a sump pump as kim mentions.
    they can be rented at contractor rental supply houses. Some HDs rent them too and harbor freight sells them cheap.
    I see, so there is no built-in way in pool systems to drain the pool.

    Quote Originally Posted by Divin Dave View Post
    It would be interested also, in testing your Tap Water for CH and TA. Doing that would give you something of what to expect in how much your CH might get reduced by water replacement.
    Yes, was thinking that the incoming water is hard, desert living! I'll assume the pool gets its water before the water softening system comes in, will try to measure its CH/TA.
    IG 20k gallon plaster pool (30' x 16' x 6') with spill-over spa (6'), circa 2005
    2HP WhisperFlo pump w/ AOSmith Century Centurion motor, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge Filter
    3HP for Spa,3/4HP motor for misters, PoolVac In-floor cleaning system
    In sunny Chandler, AZ

  9. Back To Top    #9

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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    Use the extended test kit directions that I linked to know for sure on your CYA. They are not quite the same as in the "toolkit" unless they have updated the directions. Normally the test kit directions only test to 100ppm. With an accurate CYA reading, you will better know how much to drain.

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    Hi Botham,
    Unless your pool was built with plumbing specially designed to drain the pool, then no. It isnt typical for a pool to to have a built in method to drain it. That would be unusual.
    Draining a pool isn't part of normal pool mainteance and isn't something someone should have to do except for repair or replaster.

    Once you get your chemicals balanced and become familiar with maintaining the chemistry. You should never have to drain it again.

    It might be possible in a round about way to lower the water level with your pool equipment. But would depend on whether or not your main drain is plumbed directly to the equipment pad.
    If it is, then you could put a plug in the hole in bottom of the skimmer, plug all of the returns, and pump water only from the main drain, and out the filter or through a diverter valve if you have one.

    A diverter valve would be a 3 way valve located between the output of the pump and input of the filter.

    The plug in the skimmer would have to be absolutely air tight though or the pump will eventually loose prime.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

  11. Back To Top    #11

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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    Can you post a link to a picture of your equipment pad?
    10,500 gal IG, Topaz Pebble, auto-level
    Hayward DE filter, 2HP Ecostar VSP, ProLogic PS-4, GVA actuators
    Cal Pools Wave Force Plus (wall return jets plus 2 floor pop-ups), Venturi Skimmer
    Water sheer, 2 wok pots, bubbler stem on the baja step
    ColorLogic Mutlicolor LED lamp. Taylor 2006+speed stir

  12. Back To Top    #12

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    Re: Newbie at pool maintenance

    What is happening now?

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