New to the site. Have had an eventful few years with our new pool. We installed back in 2011 and this is our 5th open season. The first year was awesome..no issues following the instructions of the pool store.
So, continued to trust them, which was my quite obvious mistake. The second year was good for a while, until we had a filter issue (sand filter cracked while under warranty, and of course we were out of town for about 4 days at the time.) which led to a rapid deterioration. And since our CYA at that time was probably well over 100, we wound up with a pool full of ammonia and then spent weeks getting that fixed. The next year went ok (probably b/c of all the water i had to dilute out), but last year ended up with the same issue with ammonia. Essentially, we got that cleared, but the pool was never quite right.....limped it along to get it closed.
Upon opening this year, changed out 50% of the water twice to dilute out any ammonia, etc. Balanced the water and then was shocking per the pool store's recommendations. (Which in retrospect, were probably not strong enough to eliminate CC in the water). Continued to have some persistent cloudiness despite repeated shocks and addition of a clarifier.
Anyway, was a chemistry major in college and absolutely fed up with the lack of science that the pool store people seem to have. Don't know why i've waited so long to research this myself.
After doing research on my own and finding this site and buying a good test kit (Taylor FAS-DPD) i am hoping for a much better (cheaper and clearer) summer. My most recent test showed the following:
Total chlorine 6
Free chlorine 4.5
Total alkalinity 130
The pool smells very chlorine-ish...so guessing this is a chloramine issue. Other than the water being hazy, there is no notable issue...i.e. no obvious algae. Surfaces are good (not slimy). We have had some issues with a black mold in areas not touched by water under the cover. (along some of the plastic edging, etc). We were told by the pool co that we could hit this with a mild bleach solution and brush away....which we have been doing for years, and this does seem to keep this in check. Again, none of this is along the water line or in the pool....only outside it in damp areas.
Based on this....i did a 15ppm shock with clorox (7.9%) last night. I calculated that the 7.9% clorox, 121oz bottle should raise me almost exactly 3ppm. So did 5 bottles.
This morning, still hazy but hasn't yet been 24 hrs...test strip shows chlorine level >10 (that's as high as the test strip goes).
Will let ya know how it's looking and ask for help if this doesn't fix things.
Thanks for your future help and chemistry know-how.