Here's the quick lowdown on my situation. I'm on day 2.5 of a freshly plastered pool filled with water and my builder has yet to finish installing the pump or any other equipment. This normally wouldn't be an issue if they were going to use the acid startup technique, but upon querying the employee that came over to my house to kick off the cure he had no idea what I was talking about when I mentioned acid cure, or low pH. After talking to my builder they want to do the traditional method, but I can't run a pump and filter so obviously that's not going to work. As far as chemicals initially added, it appears they tossed in 4 gals of muriatic and then a floater with trichlor (which I promptly removed as soon as I saw it). Here's the issue, I've got plaster dust just sitting in the pool and no method to remove it. I obviously brush the pool several times a day, but I'm not sure how much good its doing when the dust just resettles. To make matters more interesting my current water levels are as follows:
pH: <7.0 (my 2006 tester only goes to 7)
I can't get my TA under control and I've been aerating for several hours with my pH seemingly stuck (although truly, it could be rising but I can't test below 7). If we move forward with the traditional cure I'd need to bring pH up to at least 7 to feel comfortable, but ideally 7.2. However, given the high TA, I'm not sure that I could do much to lower the TA without lowing the pH to 7 and then cycling between 7 and 7.2.
If I do an acid cure on my own my concerns are:
A) how much more acid should I add when I can't really be sure how much was initially added and I can't test below 7
B) if the company is expecting a traditional cure I'm sure they are going to fire up the pump on their own with pH somewhere below 6.
On the other hand if I do an acid cure I might be able to fix my water issues. Adding more muriatic would lower the pH and the TA, and hopefully get TA under manageable levels. My concern then becomes using soda ash to raise the pH back up before turning the pump on. Obviously this wouldn't be so hot for the TA which I just got lowered. My next thought is that I could use borax to raise the pH and then hopefully I'd be able to stabilize TA and continue raising the pH so I can get the pump on and then start putting my CH into check.
Does any of that make any sense? Am I overreacting, or do I have cause for concern?
PS, I would feel pretty hopeless without your collective knowledge, so thank you in advance!