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Thread: Total Alkalinity - my test vs Pool Supply Store

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    Join Date
    May 2016
    Clearwater Beach, FL

    Total Alkalinity - my test vs Pool Supply Store

    I'm new and just received my TF 100 kit. I tested the chemicals and then, as a check took them to my local Pool Supply Store for their analysis.
    We differed in Total Alkalinity - I found it at 100 yesterday, then rechecked today and it read 90 (I probably did it wrong yesterday). The pool store said it was 75 and wanted me to add 4.2 lbs of "Total Alkalinity". What should I do?

    Also they found CH at 320, while I found it at 475 (both times).

    Any recommendations would be great.


    An open (no screen) Pebble Tec 12,000 gallon, below ground saltwater pool on a canal on the Gulf of Mexico. Installed November 2015 with a Hayward Aqua Rite T-Cell 15 chlorine generator, Hayward variable speed pump and 120 sq. ft. cartridge filter. I just found the TRP site and am waiting for my test kit (May 2016).

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    Mod Squad woodyp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    East Texas

    Re: Total Alkalinity - my test vs Pool Supply Store

    As always, our recommendation is to get comfy with your test kit and use YOUR results. That's why you bought the kit!
    16x32x52" Steel Cornelius Miramar AGP Vinyl liner 13,100 gal. Buried 2 ft.
    2 Speed Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 85 g.p.m. 22" 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Pool Rover Jr., Pool Blaster Max, Diver Dave TF100 Test Kit/Speed Stir
    Margaritaville Frozen Concoction Maker, Liqour Chiller, & Drink Mixer & Party Tub----Collect 'um all!

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    TFP Guide
    cowboycasey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Fletcher, OK

    Re: Total Alkalinity - my test vs Pool Supply Store

    +1 and your TA is perfect, your PH will raise slower...

    And because you have a great test kit, you know that there recommendation of buying stuff to raise your TA so then they can sell you MA to lower PH did not work...
    Pool: Intex 16x32 15000 gal, 2 speed 340042, Pentair CC320 Filter, CircuPool SJ45 Salt System, Intermatic PE653RC; Hot Tub: 650 Gal SWG Megachlor
    links: pool school * Recommended-Levels * SLAM * CYA chart * Test kits * How To Post Pictures * Poolmath * OCLT ** Support your website if we helped you :) **

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    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Dallas, TX

    Re: Total Alkalinity - my test vs Pool Supply Store

    That's funny, they told him to buy stuff with TA of 75.

    My recommendation is to stay away from the pool store.
    Built in 1957 44,000 gallon in-ground, Wet Edge Primera Stone in Sky Blue, Intelliflo VF Pump, 600 lb. Pentair Triton II TR-100 Sand Filter, CircuPool RG 60 Plus SWG, TF-100 test kit
    If TFP has helped you, please click to SUPPORT TFP!

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Villa Park, CA

    Re: Total Alkalinity - my test vs Pool Supply Store

    You don't need to ask your barber if you need a haircut. The answer is always yes.

    You also don't need to ask your pool store if there is something you need to get for your pool
    20' x 40' 30,000 gallon IG Plaster with Spa, wading pool, fountain built 1993
    Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo / 2HP fountain pump / 2 HP spa jet punp / Jandy Ji8000 controller with IntelliComm II interface to IntelliFlo
    Crystal Water Aqua Clean 60 Sq ft DE filter / FlowVis Flow / Stenner DIY Chlorinator / The Poolcleaner 4-wheel / Taylor K-2006

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Columbia, SC

    Re: Total Alkalinity - my test vs Pool Supply Store

    Let's say you're TA is 75, so what? I keep mine between 50 & 60. TA moderates the swings in pH. Generally, the higher the TA the more pH swings.

    Let's see, the pool $tore wants you to keep it at probably 120. PH goes up quickly causing your to buy more acid to drop the pH. After a while the acid also drops the TA - wait, you need to raise your TA.

    With many pool $tores it's a roller coaster. You are constantly buying something to adjust something.

    TFP believes in getting things as trouble free as possible. Lower your TA if you need to to keep the pH in check. The pool $tore has you chasing "magic" numbers.

    Relax and enjoy your pool. Don't let them pull you into their trap.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Tallahassee, FL

    Re: Total Alkalinity - my test vs Pool Supply Store

    Rob, Rob, Rob, you have to do us FL people proud! You are already doing good with getting the good test kit. Now show just how smart you are and stay away from the pool store. They are wallet sharks! Here is your shopping list:

    Pool School - Recommended Pool Chemicals

    Notice that none of it has to come from the pool store. Target, Walmart, Lowes, Home Depot, etc. Neat huh?

    I want to also go up to the top of this page and click on Pool School and read the ABC of pools. It will take more than one read but after testing and reading you will see it all start to click.

    Let us know if you have ANY questions!

    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, Become a TFP supporter!

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