I added borate to my pool using 20 mule team and acid. I had no problems lowering my TA down to 40 using the advice of others here. Thank you all.
Now the borates comments.
The 20 mule team borax I bought in Walmart is now in 4lb 1oz (65oz)boxes. Another post lists the boxes at 4lb 12oz. Please look at your boxes for weight when purchasing.
Pool math did a perfect job calculating the pH adjustments both with acid and borax, but it seems to under estimate the required borax to get to a ppm level. This may be a more difficult calculation, or the 20 mule team borax may vary in its borax content.
My estimation from pool math told me I needed 309oz of MA and 648oz of 20 mule team borax (9.9 boxes). I decided that doing it in 1/3 increments hold work easily. I added 3 boxes ant 100oz of acid twice. Started to add the last boxes and stopped after the first one (box 7) add 30oz of acid and called it quits as I wanted to measure all my levels before finishing up.
This morning I was surprised to find that my Lamotte test strip show 80ppm borates. This is the only borates the pool has ever seen. I'm not worried as the dog doesn't drink from the pool and we have no kids. All other levels great. It's easy enough to do and the only real concern is adding that much acid at one time. But the whole experience gave me an excuse to brush the pool thoroughly.
Take your time adding the borax it seems that it may have greater effect per oz than estimated by pool math. I know that pool math is just an estimating tool, but I for one get so used to it being highly accurate. As good as it is I think it's impossible to keep up sometimes inconsistent products like I'm guessing 20 mule team borax may be.
Final numbers are
Thanks again to all for your great advice and help. This is my first pool and I purchased it with several problems. I went to the pool store ONCE and ever since have been using TFP.
Thanks to you all the pool looks great and more importantly is IS great.