Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    76

    pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    Hi, I opened my pool last Friday. It was unusually dirty with a large dark stain at the Bottom. I remember last year starting off with 15 gallons of 8.25% bleach and that didn't raise the chlorine much....I added a few more gallons, few more etc. and finally got it in range. I decided this year with it being so dirty I would just dump 30 gallons in. It cleared within 2 days and the water is crystal clear, stain gone however my TA is of course high now.

    I had the water tested yesterday:
    CYA-0
    TC-3.6
    FC-3.6
    PH-8.6
    TA-0
    TH-291

    The pool place suggested adding 54lbs of baking soda, 9lbs of PH reducer, 6lbs stabilizer. I decided I would try getting the PH where it needs to be first so I added a gallon of Muriatic acid. Tested the water. PH Still off the chart. So I added another 1/2 gallon MA and still the PH today was off the chart, def in the 8+ range.

    Is it because my chlorine level is too high? Should I start adding the baking soda to get my TA up? Not sure what to do next.
    Installed 2005. Rectangular 20' x 40' 27,000 gal. Gunite, 3M quartz plaster finish, Hayward 4 cartridge filter, Hayward 2hp pump, Raypak 400,000 BTU Cupro-Nickel heater (2014) CoverPools safety cover, Using TFP bleach method.

  2. Back To Top    #2

    TFP Guide
    Mr Bruce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Greenville, SC
    Posts
    1,798

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    After 3 years I think it's time to get a proper test kit
    32K gallon Plaster - 1hp Hayward 2 speed Super Pump - Hayward S200 Sand Filter - TF100XL
    Test Kits - Pool Math - Chlorine/CYA/Target/Slam Chart

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    4,052

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    And ignore the pool store.

    FC of 3-4 is not going to affect the pH test.
    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!

  4. Back To Top    #4
    Richard320's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    San Dimas, CA (LA County)
    Posts
    18,768

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    Those test results are nonsense. Your pH wouldn't be that high with no TA.

    Adding a bunch of baking soda will just drive the pH higher and it's already off the scale.

    The test block stops at 8.2 (If you're using your own) so you could be at 8.2 or 8.3 or just as easily at 9.0. Remember the pH scale is logarithmic. It's the exponent value. The drop from 9 to 8 is 10 times as large as the drop from 8 to 7, so it will use huge amounts of acid to shift it. You've just discovered that. Once it comes into range, the quantities will come down.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    76

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320 View Post
    Those test results are nonsense. Your pH wouldn't be that high with no TA.

    Adding a bunch of baking soda will just drive the pH higher and it's already off the scale.

    The test block stops at 8.2 (If you're using your own) so you could be at 8.2 or 8.3 or just as easily at 9.0. Remember the pH scale is logarithmic. It's the exponent value. The drop from 9 to 8 is 10 times as large as the drop from 8 to 7, so it will use huge amounts of acid to shift it. You've just discovered that. Once it comes into range, the quantities will come down.


    I tested the water as well with a new PH test kit and it is very high. The color was no where near the 8.2 top marker. I thought it was odd that the pool store analysis stated my TA is 0 though. (waiting for a better test kit so I can test TA as well) So, you think I should just let the chlorine level settle down for another day or so and test again? Definitely holding off on adding any baking soda. Should I add more Muriatic acid? BTW, is there a difference between Muriatic acid from HomeDepot or the pool store?

    I have an automatic safety cover which is usually always closed. I'm leaving it open for now and have been running the pump non-stop.
    Installed 2005. Rectangular 20' x 40' 27,000 gal. Gunite, 3M quartz plaster finish, Hayward 4 cartridge filter, Hayward 2hp pump, Raypak 400,000 BTU Cupro-Nickel heater (2014) CoverPools safety cover, Using TFP bleach method.

  6. Back To Top    #6
    Richard320's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    San Dimas, CA (LA County)
    Posts
    18,768

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    You have at least a minimal test kit that checks pH, so get that down between 7.2 and 7.8 using acid.

    Chemically, there's no difference between MA from the pool store or Home Depot. Pricing will likely be much different. DO look at the strength, though. Sometimes the hardware stores sell "safe" or "low-fuming" acid which is half strength. In which case, the pool store's will likely be a better value.

    Get a complete test kit coming, so you can take control. You may need some CYA, or you may have too much. Pool store's always get that one wrong. Bonus: the TF100 comes with a 5t0 CYA standard solution so you can practice the test and see how to get the right readings. Then when you test, you'll know your number is right.

    And make sure you keep chlorine in that pool while you're messing with the pH. You don't want an algae bloom while you're waiting for your test kit.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    76

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    Thanks Richard. Your right, My local HD stopped carrying muriatic acid for the last few years. I remember them telling me it was too dangerous for the general consumer here in NJ. Sparklers and sling shots are too dangerous as well here as they are illegal too. Don't get me started....

    I was surprised to see they have it again but I just looked at the empty container and it is low-fume, has very little smell at all. Maybe that's why my PH hasn't moved much. I'll get a gallon from the pool store to have on hand. And yes, algae has snuck up on me in previous years trying to get the initial water balance. Thanks for the reminder!
    Installed 2005. Rectangular 20' x 40' 27,000 gal. Gunite, 3M quartz plaster finish, Hayward 4 cartridge filter, Hayward 2hp pump, Raypak 400,000 BTU Cupro-Nickel heater (2014) CoverPools safety cover, Using TFP bleach method.

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    76

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    Thanks Richard. Your right, My local HD stopped carrying muriatic acid for the last few years. I remember them telling me it was too dangerous for the general consumer here in NJ. Sparklers and sling shots are too dangerous as well here as they are illegal too. Don't get me started....

    I was surprised to see they have it again but I just looked at the empty container and it is low-fume, has very little smell at all. Maybe that's why my PH hasn't moved much. I'll get a gallon from the pool store to have on hand. And yes, algae has snuck up on me in previous years trying to get the initial water balance. Thanks for the reminder!
    Installed 2005. Rectangular 20' x 40' 27,000 gal. Gunite, 3M quartz plaster finish, Hayward 4 cartridge filter, Hayward 2hp pump, Raypak 400,000 BTU Cupro-Nickel heater (2014) CoverPools safety cover, Using TFP bleach method.

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    76

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    I got a better test kit which included TA and my TA is 140. My PH is low now. If I had added all the chems the pool place suggested my chemistry would have been totally out of whack.
    Installed 2005. Rectangular 20' x 40' 27,000 gal. Gunite, 3M quartz plaster finish, Hayward 4 cartridge filter, Hayward 2hp pump, Raypak 400,000 BTU Cupro-Nickel heater (2014) CoverPools safety cover, Using TFP bleach method.

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Richard320's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    San Dimas, CA (LA County)
    Posts
    18,768

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    Quote Originally Posted by petes914 View Post
    I got a better test kit which included TA and my TA is 140. My PH is low now. If I had added all the chems the pool place suggested my chemistry would have been totally out of whack.
    Low pH and high TA is a good combination. All you need to do to raise pH is some aeration. Anything to break the surface and get some bubbles and ripples going. No chemicals needed.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Columbia, SC
    Posts
    8,495

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    Quote Originally Posted by petes914 View Post
    I got a better test kit which included TA and my TA is 140. My PH is low now. If I had added all the chems the pool place suggested my chemistry would have been totally out of whack.
    This is why we tell folks that buying a quality test kit is the best thing you can do for your pool.
    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

  12. Back To Top    #12

    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX
    Posts
    112

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    I buy muriatic acid from HD all the time. The one I buy is definitely NOT low fume and brings my PH and TA down nicely. In my store, the acid is just outside near the pavers, etc. on a pallet.
    30,000 plaster in-ground pool with spa; 2.5HP single speed Centurion pump; Raypak RP2100 propane heater; Polaris 280 with pump, waterfall with separate pump, Triton II commercial sand filter; TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir

  13. Back To Top    #13

    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    76

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    Quote Originally Posted by Billrector View Post
    I buy muriatic acid from HD all the time. The one I buy is definitely NOT low fume and brings my PH and TA down nicely. In my store, the acid is just outside near the pavers, etc. on a pallet.
    Hi Bill, yes, the NJ HD's (at least around me) only carry the Low Fume.
    Installed 2005. Rectangular 20' x 40' 27,000 gal. Gunite, 3M quartz plaster finish, Hayward 4 cartridge filter, Hayward 2hp pump, Raypak 400,000 BTU Cupro-Nickel heater (2014) CoverPools safety cover, Using TFP bleach method.

  14. Back To Top    #14
    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Columbia, SC
    Posts
    8,495

    Re: pH is 8.6-Can't bring it in range-Not sure what to do next

    Quote Originally Posted by petes914 View Post
    Hi Bill, yes, the NJ HD's (at least around me) only carry the Low Fume.
    Have you tried Lowes or independent ACE hardware stores? Heck, even many paint stores around me carry the good muratic acid.
    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

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •