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Thread: Brand "new" pool

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    Brand "new" pool

    Hi everyone, I recently moved into a new house that has a plaster IG pool. I was told the pool was built in the 80's. Also, the owner "filled in" the deep end sometime in the early nineties so that his kids could have a "volleyball" pool, hence, the gallons are a bit lower for the dimensions. I was also told that the previous owner did his own plastering about 6 or 7 years ago, because he added these aquatic mosaics to the pool.

    Now, the neighbor came by and was joking about our pool. He said that we would get white powder all over our feet after we took our first swim, the first indicator that I have a CH problem.

    So, using my new TF-100 test kit in its awesome plano tackle box (I go fishing a lot), I performed all the tests included with it and these are my numbers.

    TC 5
    FC 8.5
    Ph 7.8
    CC 0.5
    TA 320
    CYA 130 (the black dot disappeared before I even reached the 120 mark!)
    CH 1,125 (I put like 45 drops in that bad boy)

    Furthermore, there are tiny bubbles coming out of the return jets! My home inspector noted that the pump is in good condition, along with the filter, but the pump clearly leaks. perhaps this is why there are bubbles?

    Lastly, I hired a pool inspector to come and inspect my heater which won't turn on, and verify that the pool light is safe and that no corrosion to any wires has happened and that it is properly grounded and GFCI'd. I'm having him do this because the entire house has no GFCI outlets, and my electrician discovered that the circuit breaker isn't even grounded! wth?

    So, I'm thinking I need to drain the entire pool (poolmath says 77%), acid wash the walls, or god forbid, hire someone to replaster it. That will be the first thing. While i'm at it, I would have to make the pump or filter air tight, and hopefully that isn't a big deal. THEN I can start messing with slamming the pool and getting her started up right. Sound good?

    I know these are a ton of issues, and I apologize in advance, but that is why I'm excited to be here. I promise I'll contribute when I learn more
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    Yes, you will need to drain and refill to get the CH and CYA down. We don't recommend draining 100% all at once, since ground water could cause the pool to float or pop out of the ground. We recommend a series of drain/refill cycles. However if you are currently under water use restrictions you may need to do an extended drain and refill by using pool water for your lawn and using the water allowed for the lawn to top off the pool. Until you can get the CH and CYA down use only liquid bleach, no dichlore/trichlor and no cal-hypo. Also keep the pH 7.0-7.2 and get the TA down to the 70-90 range. This will help prevent calcium scale.

    Could you post a picture of where the pump is leaking?
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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    Zea3. i found the leak. it's at the flange where the pump motor joins the pump. i'm hoping it's a gasket change and that's it. I'm going to open the filter later today to clean it out. I was told the pool guy was really bad so one thing at a time.

    As for the drain / fill sequence. is it something like drain 25%, then fill, then repeat? I certainly wouldn't want the pool popping out!
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    Sometimes people are able to stop leaks just by tightening up the bolts that hold the motor to the housing.
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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    I will certainly check the torque on all the bolts, thanks pooldv!
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    So the old pool guy came by asking if I wanted to hire him. After politely declining his services we got to talking. I mentioned the high calcium levels and he said that is because the city water is from a well and it's just high in calcium. He said to ignore that. He also said that the pool was painted about 8 years ago which coincides with the new mosaics the previous owner put in. He said that is another reason the calcium is high. Is this true you guys?

    He said he used powder chlorine on this pool all the time to keep it "soft." Would that explain the super elevated CYA levels?
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    One more comment from the former pool guy. I told him I wanted to potentially drain and fill up the pool anew. He said it would be ok because here, in this area of California, it's super dry so there is no ground water that would push out the pool. Also, he said my pool has a safety feature that will allow ground water to come up through the drain to prevent that. Do you guys believe this? I really want to replace the water asap so I can get my kids swimming in a few weeks. If I drain it completely, is it worth acid washing or repainting all the surfaces?
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    Wow! Keep him fired.

    Yes, "powder chlorine" is the likely the reason why CYA is high, assuming it is dichlor or trichlor. And it would not soften the water, salt would soften the water.

    It is doubtful, we hope, that the pool was "painted". Hopefully it was re-plastered and a mosaic was added.

    Stick around and you will know more than the pool guy in no time. If you don't already.
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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    If you don't know what the ground water situation is in your area I would not drain the pool 100%. You could drain as much as 50% at a time and be ok. It is possible the pool has a hydro static valve, which you could open that would allow ground water into the pool as you drain, theoretically preventing the pool from floating, however I would not count on having one if they can't show you exactly where it is. If you have one it would be in the deep end. Also if you have one, there probably was high ground water at the time the pool was built.

    If the pool was painted it is possible "the white dust" could be from chalking paint. Try getting a spray bottle and mix 1 part MA with 3 parts water and spray a test area on the wall of the pool and scrub it with a brush and see if the appearance changes. Always add the water first, then add MA.

    You also may want to look into trying an acid bath instead of an acid wash, just another option for you.
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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    I'm going to call our city water department to get permission to drain and hopefully fill the pool. Would they be able to tell me with certainty if the ground situation is ideal for my pool situation? a few blocks from here, we have a canal type thing leading to the ocean which is about 1-2 miles away. the fact that the canal looks to be like 10 feet below where i am should indicate it's safe right? At any rate, I will ask a professional.
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    Last question for this thread, as I'll start new ones for unrelated questions - Is it safe for my kids to swim in the pool with the CYA and CH so high right now? Is the FC effective with such a high CYA? Or... must I drain and refill the water first?
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    It is safe to swim when

    PH is 7.2 to 7.8
    Water is clear
    FC is above minimum and below shock level for your CYA, Chlorine CYA Chart

    You can swim with CH and CYA at any level.
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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    Thank you pooldv. This is perfect for my immediate needsd. gonna need a ton of bleach!
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    I just found out that I am NOT allowed to drain and refill my pool because California is in a stage 2 drought. So........ what am I to do guys? I will level out my TA and Ph and get my FC to the appropriate higher level (due to elevated CYA). That's pretty much all I can do right? OH, I AM allowed to fill my pool a total of 18 inches per MONTH. I don't suppose this can help me SLOWLY drain my pool? I AM going to get a solar cover.
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocketfish View Post
    Zea3. i found the leak. it's at the flange where the pump motor joins the pump. i'm hoping it's a gasket change and that's it. I'm going to open the filter later today to clean it out.
    FYI, this seemed to fix the leaky flange. My filter was at around 30 or 35 psi, and I thought I read somewhere on here that it meant time for cleaning. i cleaned it and we are at around 20 psi, and the leaking stopped!
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Re: Brand "new" pool

    Notwithstanding the expense, there are companies in Cali who will use reverse osmosis to remove cya and calcium from the pool, just so you know. Not sure where in your area, but it might be worth calling around.

    As far as an acid bath, another option for an acid wash while there's water in the pool is te contraption I'll link you to in a moment.
    Amazon.com: Purity Pool UAW Underwater Acid Wash Set: Patio, Lawn Garden

    Hope that helps
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swampwoman View Post
    Notwithstanding the expense, there are companies in Cali who will use reverse osmosis to remove cya and calcium from the pool, just so you know. Not sure where in your area, but it might be worth calling around.

    As far as an acid bath, another option for an acid wash while there's water in the pool is te contraption I'll link you to in a moment.
    Amazon.com: Purity Pool UAW Underwater Acid Wash Set: Patio, Lawn Garden

    Hope that helps
    WOW, there are such companies who will filter my pool? that's crazy. I bet it'll cost a pretty penny. nonetheless, i'll look into it. thanks so much!

    Yesterday, I brushed off small spots of mustard algae from my pool for the first time. I noticed a cloud of white powdery "stuff" getting stirred up. My guess is that it is calcium scaling so I brushed every surface thinking the filter would suck up and trap all the powdery stuff. Is this safe to assume? should I have vacuumed instead? The water is no longer crystal clear and is a tiny bit cloudy.

    These are some of the levels I posted from my last test a week and a half ago that I think are pertinent:

    CH 1,125
    CYA 130
    TA 320
    PH 7.8

    In light of my super high CH and CYA levels, and inability to drain and refill the water (restricted), I have arranged a visit from a reverse osmosis service. They are coming over this Saturday. The RO will definitely take care of all the white stuff as well as CH and CYA, I'm sure.

    My main concern however, is the plaster of the pool. Cosmetically, you can see blotches and scratches throughout the pool. It's not bad enough that I care, however. The powdery stuff isn't the plaster or grout from my pool is it?

    This Saturday I will have the reverse osmosis process done on my pool. All my levels should reset to zero and I want to IMMEDIATELY get the levels where they need to be.

    Pardon my newbie question but is it as simple as using the PoolMath calculator and inputting my "now" numbers to zero to ascertain how much Chlorine, CYA, Calcium Chloride, and baking soda I need to add? Is it best to aim a bit lower and let the chemicals "settle in"?

    I'm excited to finally get to swim in my new pool (we just moved in last week).
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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    Re: White powder and reverse osmosis

    When I had mustard algae last season and brushed I got cloudy too, isn't that dead algae?

    It completely went away when the slam was over.
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    Re: White powder and reverse osmosis

    I would Backwash and deep clean your filter. Then run it solid for 24 hours while you SLAM your pool.

    They may not do a reverse osmosis on your pool if it has algae and you want to get all the material out of the pool that you can before they do it.
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    Re: White powder and reverse osmosis

    In a couple of days, the reverse osmosis trailer will be filtering my pool water. They anticipate being done in the late afternoon this Saturday. I plan on adding liquid chlorine, stabilizer, and muriatic acid and whatever else I need immediately so the algae has no time to startup. While I will start out with half my recommended levels, do you think I will be able to swim on Sunday afternoon for Father's Day?
    16,250 Gallons, IG Plaster; Pentair Clean & Clear CC100 Cartridge Filter with WhisperFlo Pump;
    Pool install 1980's; TF-100 Test Kit; Stage 2 California drought restrictions

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