New to the forum, semi-new to pools. Apologies in advance for the giant wall of text.
Three years ago my older brother bought a house with pool. Around the same time he agreed to let me live with him while I finish university in exchange for taking care of the pool for him. Pretty great deal if you ask me. For the last couple of seasons, maintaining the pool has been okay. I've mostly followed the advice of my local pool store and for the most part things have been fine - not trouble-free or easy - but fine. Last year we started having problems with algae and struggled all season to keep it under control. Unfortunately, we got so fed up with it that by the time closing time came around, we basically just closed it up without it being properly balanced or clean.
So, now I'm dealing with the worlds most severe algae bloom now that we've opened the pool again for the season. I've decided to really try to get on top of things this year and stop following the advice of the pool store and try to stick with the methodologies outlined on this site. I've read through the introduction articles and have a decent understanding of the chemistry.
Anyway, on to the problem at hand. When we had our "pool guy" come out and open the pool for the season, the water was dark green. I immediately tested the water (using a blue devil "professional" test kit) and found that the pH was about 8.2, alkalinity was around 80 and CH was 50. CYA was pretty much zero, but I know CYA can be off if pH isn't balanced. I then took a sample to the pool store to see what they suggested and they said to not bother with balancing and go ahead and add 9lbs of shock and a bottle of Algae Kill 60. Over the next couple of days, I was busy skimming massive amounts of dead algae from the top of the pool and backwashing and rinsing the filter. After a couple of days the water was a lot less green but still very cloudly. I went ahead and shocked again with 11bs of shock and scrubbed the bottom of the pool again. Now, the water is still very cloudy and still has a green tint. Last night I added 9 bottles of regular liquid bleach and scrubbed the pool again. This morning I tested the water and the FC and pH were both very low (1.0, and 6.5 respectively). The pool store recommends shocking and using algaecide again, but I am hesitant. I wish I had known about the SLAMing method listed here. At this point, I am not sure if I should try to adjust the pH so that I can get an accurate reading of the CYA and proceed with the SLAMing method here or if I should just now worry about the pH and go with the pool store's advice.
Many thanks in advance for any comments/suggestions.