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Thread: Unable to maintain CYA

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    Unable to maintain CYA

    When I started here, my CYA tested in the 20-30 range, despite using lots of tablets. I added stabalizer, and got it up and stopped with the tablets. Over the winter I noticed the pool was getting algae if I forgot about it for a few days (it happens)... I tested my CYA levels recently, and it's back at 0. Back to adding stabalizer.

    I am contemplating adding tablets back to my regime and liquid 1-2 times a week. We get a LOT of rain in Florida, could that be the cause? Or is something else eating up my CYA?

    Thanks in advanced!
    Pool, 11000 Gallon Gunite Pool, shallow ( < 5' deep ) including spa. Hayward 1750 Cartridge Filter. Pump is a single speed 2 HP Hayward Northstar. Polaris Caretaker 5 Zone Floor System. Pool ~ 8 years old. TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Alex, I think you hit that one on the head - water exchange. If I recall correctly, FL has had a wet season already, and all of that water exchange is bound to lower CYA. There's nothing wrong with using those pucks for a short time, but in your case ... with CYA being at zero right now .... you can't afford to wait on the pucks to raise it. Use some stabilizer right away and shoot for at least 30 ppm. Do that now, and if you want to use a puck or two here & there it's okay, but remember to watch the CYA level and also that pucks are acidic. So pucks will drive-down your pH and TA as well.

    In addition, watch your FC closely right now since without any CYA (at the moment) your FC will disappear very fast to the sun. Now if you are starting to see algae now, let us know and/or start a SLAM right away (link below).

    Hope that helps.
    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: Unable to maintain CYA

    Pumping out/overflowing/refilling dilutes CYA. Some folks just normally lose some over the winter anyhow------looooooong discussion! Algae didn't eat it.
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Hey neighbor! I find myself adding CYA too. My pool has no auto drain so I know every time I'm pumping CYA out of the pool. Also, since it's a salt water pool, I have to adjust for that. Still, for some reason, the pool goes through more CYA than would be expected based on water exchange, splash out, and draining. I find myself adding CYA granules once a month. I only add salt a couple times a year. Nobody seems to have an explanation for it because the common thinking is that CYA isn't normally consumed. Nobody told that to my pool!
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Quote Originally Posted by robdac View Post
    Hey neighbor! I find myself adding CYA too. My pool has no auto drain so I know every time I'm pumping CYA out of the pool. Also, since it's a salt water pool, I have to adjust for that. Still, for some reason, the pool goes through more CYA than would be expected based on water exchange, splash out, and draining. I find myself adding CYA granules once a month. I only add salt a couple times a year. Nobody seems to have an explanation for it because the common thinking is that CYA isn't normally consumed. Nobody told that to my pool!
    As a gardener, I've learned that "rules" I read written for anywhere else on the planet don't apply in South Florida... come to think of it, "rules" of the "road" and other niceities don't apply here either, maybe it's just a parallel universe.

    When I first came here, after 7 years of using tons of pucks, I expected a high CYA. I was stunned when I had to add stabilizer. I have a sock in the skimmer and a sock in the tablet floater, aiming for around 30-40 for effort one.

    I'm thinking with the summer sun/rain coming out, I might go back to pucks + liquid chlorine and test the CYA regularly, if it starts to creep up, stop the bucks and watch?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Texas Splash View Post
    Alex, I think you hit that one on the head - water exchange. If I recall correctly, FL has had a wet season already, and all of that water exchange is bound to lower CYA. There's nothing wrong with using those pucks for a short time, but in your case ... with CYA being at zero right now .... you can't afford to wait on the pucks to raise it. Use some stabilizer right away and shoot for at least 30 ppm. Do that now, and if you want to use a puck or two here & there it's okay, but remember to watch the CYA level and also that pucks are acidic. So pucks will drive-down your pH and TA as well.

    In addition, watch your FC closely right now since without any CYA (at the moment) your FC will disappear very fast to the sun. Now if you are starting to see algae now, let us know and/or start a SLAM right away (link below).

    Hope that helps.
    FYI: Did a mini-SLAM over the past few days, testing 1x-2x/day, adding bleach morning and night, and running the filter constantly. Looking clear after about 3 days (I didn't do that entire week+ process I did to go from green to clear). Going to clean filter again and do an overnight test.

    But I'm leaning towards pucks as part of keeping pool from getting green.

    Some years back, on my fathers suggestion, I used the Extended Control Algeacide that lasts for 3 months. If I remembered to do it every three months, I never got algae as long as I was "decent" on taking care of the pool. It's slightly more expensive than a pure BBB solution, but I'm considering it to reduce the risk that I get busy at work and neglect pool for a few days and the pool goes green.
    Pool, 11000 Gallon Gunite Pool, shallow ( < 5' deep ) including spa. Hayward 1750 Cartridge Filter. Pump is a single speed 2 HP Hayward Northstar. Polaris Caretaker 5 Zone Floor System. Pool ~ 8 years old. TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Please remember Alex that some algaecides introduce more problems to a pool (i.e metals like copper) which could complicates things later for you. In short, there's no substitute for a well-chlorinated pool where the FC matches its corresponding (current) CYA level. Once algae is eliminated by passing all 3 SLAM criteria, keeping the FC at the proper level will do well to prevent the recurrence of algae. With the consistent water exchange you may encounter in your area of FL, it will help to keep CYA at a respectable level, but you'll always need include bleach/chlorine as part of the pool's diet. As others say here from time to time, "A pool is like a dog, and needs to be fed every day". Just one of those things we have to do as pool owners. If you have any questions, certainly let us know.
    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: Unable to maintain CYA

    But I'm leaning towards pucks as part of keeping pool from getting green.
    That's fine. Watch your pH!! Test more often than you are doing now so you can detect trends before you need to make major adjustments.

    Agaecides are fine but they are no substitute for proper chlorination.
    Dave S.
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    That's fine. Watch your pH!! Test more often than you are doing now so you can detect trends before you need to make major adjustments.

    Agaecides are fine but they are no substitute for proper chlorination.
    I learned that the hard way when my pool felt like a science experiment.

    I'm thinking these precautions to give me margin for error.

    Thanks for advice everyone.

    - - - Updated - - -

    So, it sounds like major takeaways.

    1. I can introduce pucks. I should stick to the basic ones (not the 6-in-1 filled with junk). Pucks will raise CYA and impact pH. I should test and log those regularly to make sure that there are no problems.

    2. Algaecide does not replace pool chlorination, still need to monitor constantly.

    I'm saving up for a SWG. I was learning towards one of the liquid chlorine pumps, but once you installed the complex systems, it was as costly as SWG.
    Pool, 11000 Gallon Gunite Pool, shallow ( < 5' deep ) including spa. Hayward 1750 Cartridge Filter. Pump is a single speed 2 HP Hayward Northstar. Polaris Caretaker 5 Zone Floor System. Pool ~ 8 years old. TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    your all over it, what we teach here is to know your pool and what it needs
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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Well said Alex!
    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: Unable to maintain CYA

    YEs. Only goal for algaecide is that if I neglect pool for a few days, I need to shock it, not go through a week long SLAM process. The season long one at least is a 4x/year treatment, and really I do it 2x in the summer only when I've done it.

    Thanks again everyone!
    Pool, 11000 Gallon Gunite Pool, shallow ( < 5' deep ) including spa. Hayward 1750 Cartridge Filter. Pump is a single speed 2 HP Hayward Northstar. Polaris Caretaker 5 Zone Floor System. Pool ~ 8 years old. TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Little known fact: Down at the bottom of poolmath where it says Suggested Goal Levels, there actually is a dropdown selection for trichlor as a chlorine source.
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320 View Post
    Little known fact: Down at the bottom of poolmath where it says Suggested Goal Levels, there actually is a dropdown selection for trichlor as a chlorine source.
    Oooh, interesting...

    Main thing is getting the pucks without extras cheaply.

    Question for people, would a CYA of 60 be a reasonable "sound the alarm" and stop with pucks until CYA drops back down to 30 or below?
    Pool, 11000 Gallon Gunite Pool, shallow ( < 5' deep ) including spa. Hayward 1750 Cartridge Filter. Pump is a single speed 2 HP Hayward Northstar. Polaris Caretaker 5 Zone Floor System. Pool ~ 8 years old. TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    60 is fine, it may even be preferred in sunny FL. I would recommend keeping CYA at 50 anyway for your location.
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex_H View Post
    come to think of it, "rules" of the "road" and other niceities don't apply here either, maybe it's just a parallel universe.
    That about sums up my So Fl experience to date!!! LOL
    11K gal IG screened-in plaster pool w/ spa
    pentair 150 cartridge filter, Pentair Intelliflow VS pump,
    Aquarite AQR15 SWG, AquaCal Heatwave Heat Pump, TF-100 test kit

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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Quote Originally Posted by pooldv View Post
    60 is fine, it may even be preferred in sunny FL. I would recommend keeping CYA at 50 anyway for your location.
    Right. In the few years before I came here, I used 3 pucks/week in summer, 2 pucks as needed in winter. My pool was NEVER that clear unless I cleared the filter and then shocked the pool, then it was as clear as I routinely have with my TFP. However, based on what I read here, I expected that my CYA would be high, imagine my shock that it was VERY low.

    I'm trying to establish some "CYA band" that I should maintain. If 50-60 sounds about right, then there should be some point at which I stop using Pucks.

    So does this sound reasonable:
    Lower Bound 40 (if hits 40, add granules to get to 50)
    Upper Bound 70 (if hits 70, no more pucks until drops below 60)

    Goal will be to maintain between CYA of 50 and 60?

    Quote Originally Posted by robdac View Post
    That about sums up my So Fl experience to date!!! LOL
    LOL... too true...

    I am just a little frustrated because when I really do the TFP approach, I get a crystal clear blue pool, which I LOVE. But then I get complacent and can't keep up on the testing rigor, and I'm in this weird state. Trying to see if I can keep my pool pretty with a schedule that I can actually maintain.
    Pool, 11000 Gallon Gunite Pool, shallow ( < 5' deep ) including spa. Hayward 1750 Cartridge Filter. Pump is a single speed 2 HP Hayward Northstar. Polaris Caretaker 5 Zone Floor System. Pool ~ 8 years old. TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    That sounds like a good plan. We all suffer from complacency with the ease of TFPC. Every couple of years I get some algae to wake me up and make me get off TFP and go test my water!
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    Re: Unable to maintain CYA

    Alex after a while you will find your "sweet" spot with your pool.......keep a good log with notes about the weather and all. After a while you will be able to say..........."I got it!" You and your pool will both be happy!

    Kim
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