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Thread: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

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    First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    I hate to admit to this but my pool has gone about 8 years without draining/replacing the water. Finally, hired a company to drain the pool and remove the buildup around the tile and waterfall and pressure wash as well. Just finished filling the pool with brand new water and been reading Pool School and posts but couldn't really find any posts pertaining to steps and/or requirements to get my pool back.

    I'm assuming that there are chemicals and salt that I'll need to add and circulate. Does anyone have a procedure that I can follow with advice for a 22,000 gallon in ground pool. Keep in mind that I do have a SWG but I figure that won't come into play until we get the initial water closer to where it needs to be from adding chemicals by hand.

    Thanks for your guidance!
    16,000 gal Pebble Sheen pool w/ spa, Jandy Aqualink, Hayward Salt system, 60 SF DE Filter, Hayward Gas Heater, Caretaker In-floor pop-up cleaning system.
    2hp Whisperflow for filter, 2hp Dynaglass for booster, 2hp for blower, 1hp Dynaglass for scuppers.

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    For future reference, the only reason to drain a pool is high CYA or high CH. High CH is likely a possibility for your area, but I wouldn't worry until it is at least 800 or 1000. Mine hasn't been drained in 4 years and I have no plans to drain it ever.

    So, now you have new water. Do you have a good test kit like this, Pool School - Test Kits Compared? I use the TF100 from TFTestkits.net. Test the water and and make appropriate adjustments just as you would normally. Have you been maintaining the pool? There is no new water procedure. Only new plaster procedures. You can add salt now. Here is my favorite page on saltwater water chemistry, Pool School - Water Balance for SWGs Don't wait to get some chlorine in there so it doesn't turn green.

    If you are brand new to pool water maintenance then you can post some test results and we can help more. Also, start reading here, Pool School - ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry
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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Yes, my former pool maintenance pro said it was time to replace the water and it must have been because of high CYA or CH making it very difficult to keep the levels right. He retired and sold his company to someone that wasn't as knowledgable and I took over a few months ago. I really only now know what I read on Pool School and haven't done anything to maintain the chemistry since I knew I was changing the water and it's winter (even in Arizona).

    What at confused me was the pool service company that cleaned the tile and pool surface said that I should drop in like 6 bags of salt and chemicals to get it going before turning in my SWG. So, I'm unsure really of the proper first step.

    Actually, the first step will be to order that test kit as mine is a cheapie inadequate one. Thanks for any further insight.
    16,000 gal Pebble Sheen pool w/ spa, Jandy Aqualink, Hayward Salt system, 60 SF DE Filter, Hayward Gas Heater, Caretaker In-floor pop-up cleaning system.
    2hp Whisperflow for filter, 2hp Dynaglass for booster, 2hp for blower, 1hp Dynaglass for scuppers.

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    You will definitely need the salt before turning on the SWG. The experts will be along shortly with a good action plan.
    Welcome to TFP!


    Free form 17X30. 14,500 Gal. Pentair sand filter and 1.5 hp pump. Aqua-Rite SWCG. TF-100 Test Kit w/Speed Stir

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    First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Pool math will help figure out how much salt to add. 6 bags sounds a little low. What ever pool math recommends, I would probably start off with about half to 2/3 of the amount and try to creep up on 3000 ppm. Better to under shoot than go over. If you do not have salt strips or a salt test kit, you can order those from TFTestkits as well. I get the blue crystal blue bag for water softening at Home Depot. A lot cheaper than the pool salt they sell.

    But the 2 things you must focus on now is your FC and PH.
    Hopefully, your current test kit will at least measure you Ph so that you can get to 7.5 - 7.8. Pool math and pool school will help you determine what you need.
    And if you post your readings here, the good folks will give you great advice.

    Most likely you have no CYA in your fresh water, so you can get some stabilizer to get that up to around 50. TFP recommends a little higher for SWG, but once again better to creep up on than go over. Read up on how to add. I buy this at Home Depot.

    And most critical is going to be bleach/chlorine. I recommend you get a couple of bottles because this is going to be your source for FC until you have your salt right and your SWG running. With your pool size, you probably only need a gallon to start. The amount will be dependent on the strength. Just get some bleach at your local grocery store because it will most likely be the newest. I would not buy this at Home Depot.


    Free form 17X30. 14,500 Gal. Pentair sand filter and 1.5 hp pump. Aqua-Rite SWCG. TF-100 Test Kit w/Speed Stir

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Jeremy, Welcome to the forum. It sounds like you're coming into this as a newbie so let's all slow down a little.

    While you are waiting on your test kit, I suggest you start by reading "The ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry" up in Pool School. That article will tell you the parameters that are important and what to do to get them where they need to be.

    Once your kit gets in, please run all the tests and post the results and we can help you from there. You'll have a crystal clear pool all summer....promise
    Dave S.
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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Jeremy, as you've already heard, the right test kit is #1 so you can stay on-top of your new water. Pooldv gave you the link, and I too have the TF-100 (with speed stir) and it's great. Awesome value. And since there are no new water instructions themselves, and your pool was totally drained/cleaned, you can basically count on the following:
    1 - Add stabilizer to an initial target of 30 ppm. That's only temporary until your SWG starts working then you'll increase it to 70 to protect your FC.
    2 - Use regular liquid bleach to quickly maintain some FC (about 3-5 ppm) until you get salt in the pool and you know for sure the SWG is working via proper testing. Once the SWG is operating correctly, increase CYA to 70.
    3 - Adjust pH to 7.6-7.8
    4 - Depending on your fill water, adjust TA as necessary. More than likely it will be high, so refer to READ THIS for help.
    5 - I suspect your fill water will already be hard, so CH will always be high unless you use lots of rain water or have a dedicated water softener. But high CH can be controlled quite well as already mentioned as long as you properly maintain pH and TA. Together they will control "CSI" which can be found on the Poolmath calculator .

    That's a fairly good estimate of what you need to do. Of course read the "ABC's" and other links noted by others and that are in our signatures. They are extremely important. Don't wait too long though because you don't want that new water to develop algae. Let us know if you still have questions.
    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
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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    I can't wait for you to see how clear and jewel like your pool will be with your own test kit and the help from TFP.

    Let us know when you get your test kit. We can help you with the tests. There are videos to show how to do them.

    Here is a link to what you will want to do to your pool daily, weekly, monthly. I have mine printed out and by my test kit.

    Pool School - Basic Pool Care Schedule

    Once you get your test kit you will be SO happy how much cheaper it will be to maintain your pool on your own.

    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

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Thanks everyone! I'll report back when the test kit arrives and will read, read, read in the meantime.
    16,000 gal Pebble Sheen pool w/ spa, Jandy Aqualink, Hayward Salt system, 60 SF DE Filter, Hayward Gas Heater, Caretaker In-floor pop-up cleaning system.
    2hp Whisperflow for filter, 2hp Dynaglass for booster, 2hp for blower, 1hp Dynaglass for scuppers.

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Just received the TF-100 test kit---oh man, that is the real deal. I don't know where to start! Also got the speed stir and salt test. Will try to carve out time at lunch to begin testing, but it's overwhelming with all the stuff included (and being a newbie).
    16,000 gal Pebble Sheen pool w/ spa, Jandy Aqualink, Hayward Salt system, 60 SF DE Filter, Hayward Gas Heater, Caretaker In-floor pop-up cleaning system.
    2hp Whisperflow for filter, 2hp Dynaglass for booster, 2hp for blower, 1hp Dynaglass for scuppers.

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Here is a link to the videos. https://www.youtube.com/user/TF100TestKit

    Have you added any stabilizer yet ?? Do you have some or if you need to buy it you can pick it up at Walmart, HomeDepot, ... Have you started to add salt yet ??
    You want to get the CYA up to 30 and then the pH in the 7.2-7.8 range and then start to work on FC.
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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Okay gang, I definitely need your help. On Sunday, I started the process and added 4 x 40lb bags of pool salt and 2 x 1gallon jugs on HTH Liquid Chlorinator (I think Sodium Hypochlorite 10%). I added it slowly around the pool pretty evenly then brushed it about to stir it in. Here are my test results--and thanks for the YouTube video links--I wrote down the instructions and simply did those tests for now:

    1. Cyanuric Acid CYA: I could see the black dot the whole time. Water was clear past the 20ml line.
    2. Calcium Hardness: 25ml pool water. Took 24 drops so 240 is my number (Arizona is typically hard water so assume this is way high)
    3. Free Chlorine is barely noticeable. 10ml of pool water. Did the test twice and maybe a slight pinkish hue disappeared after 3 drops. FC=1.5
    4. Combined Chlorine: same 10ml of pool water as #3. didn't register as it was clear (makes sense)
    5. Total Alkalinity: 25ml pool water. Took 18 drops so 180 is my number
    6. Aquacheck Salt Strip Test: result was a 4, so says I have about 1230

    What do you recommend that I do next? Again, I'm brand new to this and reading as much as possible, but it's still confusing until I'm actually doing it (with some guidance). I'd rather ask the experts than screw it up and try to fix it. Thanks gain!
    16,000 gal Pebble Sheen pool w/ spa, Jandy Aqualink, Hayward Salt system, 60 SF DE Filter, Hayward Gas Heater, Caretaker In-floor pop-up cleaning system.
    2hp Whisperflow for filter, 2hp Dynaglass for booster, 2hp for blower, 1hp Dynaglass for scuppers.

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Others will have better advice for a game plan, but I just wanted to note for the Calcium hardness test that you multiply by 25 for each drop, so you might be 600.

    That is assuming you did a 10ml sample like I do.

    After you run the tests for awhile, you will be a pro.

    Marty


    Free form 17X30. 14,500 Gal. Pentair sand filter and 1.5 hp pump. Aqua-Rite SWCG. TF-100 Test Kit w/Speed Stir

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Marty, I updated my post to reflect the amount of pool water used. It probably makes more sense now. I followed exactly the YouTube guidance and amounts.
    16,000 gal Pebble Sheen pool w/ spa, Jandy Aqualink, Hayward Salt system, 60 SF DE Filter, Hayward Gas Heater, Caretaker In-floor pop-up cleaning system.
    2hp Whisperflow for filter, 2hp Dynaglass for booster, 2hp for blower, 1hp Dynaglass for scuppers.

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Good work getting that TF-100. Now you can see why it's so important. As for those tests:
    - CYA and FC will be priority #1. You can never let the FC go down to zero, and with a SWG it's probably burning-off twice as fast than it can be produced since there is no CYA (stabilizer) showing-up on the tests. So, you'll want to add stabilizer (soaking sock method) as soon as possible if you haven't already. A SWG pool requires CYA between 70-80 ppm, so start that right away.
    - Keep FC at 2-4 ppm for the first day or two, then increase to 5-6 until you know for sure your SWG is working properly and you get it dialed in. Augment with regular bleach as needed until you get it adjusted.
    - I didn't a see pH reading. That's my next important reading as it has a huge impact on other issues (along with TA and CH for scale). SO make sure your pH is between 7.6-7.8. Your TA is high and needs to come down with acid. Please see HERE for good instructions on lowering TA.
    - I suspect your salt level may be a bit low, but I'm no SWG owner. You may want to double-check this: Pool School - Water Balance for SWGs.

    Definitely watch that FC level, CYA, and pH real close for the next few days until your pool settles down. Those are very important to you at the moment. The rest will all fall into place.
    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: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    So here is my update: Got the sock going so that is in process. Put in some muriatic acid for TA. Added more liquid chlorine. Added 4 more bags of salt too. I'm trying to nudge the numbers without over-doing it, then I can increase to get precise results. Sounds like I need the CYA to dissolve--the sock process is slow but seemingly releasing (I squeeze it once in a while to get it going too). Fortunately, it's not pool season here in Arizona yet -- still too cool -- so I'm learning at the right time. I really like the testing kit though---pretty easy and the speed stir is nice.

    I'll check back in Tuesday with some numbers and will see if I'm moving the dial. Otherwise, we may need an intervention. Thanks!
    16,000 gal Pebble Sheen pool w/ spa, Jandy Aqualink, Hayward Salt system, 60 SF DE Filter, Hayward Gas Heater, Caretaker In-floor pop-up cleaning system.
    2hp Whisperflow for filter, 2hp Dynaglass for booster, 2hp for blower, 1hp Dynaglass for scuppers.

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    You are so going in the right direction! Good job!

    The CYA will take about a week to show on the test. Keep giving it a squeeze every time you are out there.

    Make sure to dose the FC as if the CYA is already at your target range.

    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

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Quote Originally Posted by jeremysm1 View Post
    Just received the TF-100 test kit---oh man, that is the real deal. I don't know where to start! Also got the speed stir and salt test. Will try to carve out time at lunch to begin testing, but it's overwhelming with all the stuff included (and being a newbie).
    The TF100 is an eye opener when you first get it as is all the stuff in Pool School.

    Remember it's only water and to double check your work. After a few times of doing things and going back to Pool School it will all start to become second nature and fit into place.
    '70s IG Vinyl 32K gal, Lazy L, Hayward SuperPump 1.5hp 120V, S240 Sand Filter W/DE
    Solar Blanket, Well Water, Borax Added, TF-100 tester. ? too cold
    1979, 275gal Conway Emerald Spa P-100-2, ES-2 Spa Pack, bromine floater, indoor
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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    Looks like I'm making some progress! Spent a few minutes of my time yesterday squeezing the socks which was easy and got the rest of the CYA to dissolve. Just tested the pool and here are the results. Can anyone give some insight as to the next step? I'm going to head over to pool school again to review too.

    1. Cyanuric Acid CYA: 32 (between the 30 and 40 closer to the 30 though)
    2. Calcium Hardness: 25ml pool water. Took 29 drops so 290 is my number
    3. Free Chlorine: 10ml of pool water. 8 drops so FC=4
    4. Combined Chlorine: same 10ml of pool water as #3. Didn't register as it was clear.
    5. Total Alkalinity: 25ml pool water. Took 12 drops so 120 is my number
    6. Aquacheck Salt Strip Test: result was a 58, so says I have about 2580
    7. PH=7.2-7.4
    16,000 gal Pebble Sheen pool w/ spa, Jandy Aqualink, Hayward Salt system, 60 SF DE Filter, Hayward Gas Heater, Caretaker In-floor pop-up cleaning system.
    2hp Whisperflow for filter, 2hp Dynaglass for booster, 2hp for blower, 1hp Dynaglass for scuppers.

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    Re: First Time Emptyping Pool - Need Guidance

    You are doing well. Now remember that since you have a SWG, you'll want to continue to increase CYA to about 70 ppm. The recommended range is 70-80, but you don't want to over-shoot, so be cautious and allow the granules sufficient time (at least a week) to fully dissolve and show-up on your CYA testing. CH is not bad at all for your area. I wouldn't do anything with that as I suspect it will continue to increase soon as you replenish water.

    FC - That's going to be key. Until your SWG generates FC and your CYA increases to at least 70 to protect that FC, I would keep a close eye on the FC of 4. Don't go any lower. You could even hover around 5-6 until your CYA builds if you wanted. Feel free to add a little regular bleach to help until your SWG is adjusted and working well. Once your CYA is at about 70, you'll adjust the SWG to maintain a target FC of 5 on a regular basis.

    pH and TA will be worked together. pH is a little low, but aeration (and your spa) will probably increase that fine. The TA is a little high which should also help to increase pH to the recommended 7.6-7.8 for your pool. Later, when your pH continues to climb and you add acid to lower, it will also lower TA as well. From there just aerate as noted on the Pool School - Lower Total Alkalinity page.

    Overall, you look to be doing quite well.
    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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