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Thread: New pool--already a disaster!!

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    New pool--already a disaster!!

    So we decided to get an above ground pool for the summer. Its an Intex 14' x 42". We got it levelled and put up and filled. We swam in it for a great first week before we got around the getting chemicals in it. We went to the pool store and the lady there anazlyzed a water sample. She told us to put in an entire bottle of algaecide (Banish) and 2 packets of a Bio-Guard Care System powdered shock. As soon as we put in the bottle of Banish, the water got cloudy. We added the shock an hour later, as she told us to do. It's been a day and a half and the water is still cloudy. We also added some "Lo N Slo", since she said to before to drop the ph bc our alkalinity was too high. So NOW-- Free chlorine is at 0 again. It was at the "OK" level earlier this morning. The alkalinity is in the normal range. Bromine was high earlier, but now is at 0. Still very cloudy. Now what? Frustrated...but I know it's because of lack of knowledge! I would love to figure this pool thing out!

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Ohmygosh, stop with the pool store chemicals already!?! I'm dizzy and your pocketbook is probably too!

    Are you attempting to keep a bromine pool or a chlorine pool?? Very few people here (very, VERY few) use bromine for their pools, its more common in spas. And once you put bromine in a pool it is pretty hard to get rid of short of draining and refilling.

    Please review some of our basics: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Just want a small, simple, chlorine pool. I don't know where the bromine came from on the test, but it was high earlier. I wonder if the algaecide had it or what? I really don't know. I read the basics of the ABC Chemistry just now. Still not sure where to go from here. My husband does want to drain it....I keep telling him not to, because it seems like we should be able to fix this without draining it. I mean, all we've done is add the chemical we were instructed to. So frustrating. I am just suspicious that we added too much of the algaecide in the beginning, because that turned it cloudy immediately and we haven't been able to recover since. D0 we need to add more chlorine since it says zero o the chlorine, or should we drain and start over? Chlorine tabs or a pack of the shock?

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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    90% of the time I would tell people not to drain, but your pool is small enough and you have all those pool store potions in it and don't live somewhere that currently has a lot of water restrictions so I say drain it, start over right.

    Given the size of your pool you may be a candidate for our seasonal pool guide a simplified method of maintaining a pool that is small enough to drain and start over if there are problems Pool School - Guide for Seasonal/Temporary Pools
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Ok, are you suggesting to drain it because of the bromine level (which is now back to 0), or because we put in too much of the algaecide in the beginning?

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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    I am mainly suggested draining because you used a copper based algaecide which can cause staining, and blond hair to turn green, as well as not being sure if the shock you used was Cal-Hypo or Dichlor based, I can't find a MSDS on the specific name you listed. If Dichlor it adds to your CYA level which you can't test for without one of the suggested test kits, and I assume you want to be back in your pool as soon as possible and not spend 3-5 days waiting on a new test kit to come in the mail before getting this mess straightened out.

    ps we almost never think algaecide is a good thing, and in those rare situation where algaecide is needed it should NEVER be the cheap copper stuff, it should be a quality polyquat algaecide
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Thank you very much. Now i know the reason we are having an issue (the copper in the algaecide), because it did turn our daughters hair green. So once we drain and refill, what do we put in the pool? A pakcet of shock or just chlorine tabs?

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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Quote Originally Posted by renaecd129 View Post
    Thank you very much. Now i know the reason we are having an issue (the copper in the algaecide), because it did turn our daughters hair green. So once we drain and refill, what do we put in the pool? A pakcet of shock or just chlorine tabs?
    Neither. Bleach, it's just an inexpensive form of chlorine.

    Go back to the article Isaac linked to and read it over a couple of times.

    Understand that the "shock", chlorine tabs and bleach are all the same chlorine in different packages with different pricing. But, hidden in each one is another chemical that you may or may not want. Most shock and chlorine tabs also contain CYA/Stabilizer which you want a little of, but too much is a bad thing. The bleach on the other hand only has water & a little salt it adds to the pool.

    If you want the gory details, here it is but this is certainly not necessary to understand. In it's natural state, chlorine is a gas. Many large commercial pools actually use gas injection systems to chlorinate their pools. Now, to change chlorine into something we can use at home it needs to be bound to something chemically. The "somethings" that are commonly used are stabilizer (also known as CYA), calcium, lithium, or --- get this water when we talk about bleach. All of these add a little salt to your water, but they add something else. Cal-Hypo add calcium, Tri-Chlor and Di-Chlor (tabs and most granules) add stabilizer, Lithium hypochlorite adds lithium and liquid chlorine adds - water.

    All of these things can be bad for your pool (except the water) in large quantities. The stabilizer helps shield the chlorine form UV degradation, but at higher levels it also impairs the ability of chlorine to do it's work. The higher the stabilizer level you have the higher the amount of chlorine you need. Too much calcium and you start to get scaling on the walls and floors of your pool. But the bleach brings water to your pool.
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Neither, if you follow the seasonal guide it lists exactly what to add, don't add anything else except what it calls for. This guide is based on using specified amounts of certain things like Stabilizer then assuming you don't add any other stabilized chlorine (most dry chlorine products). Otherwise your FC / CYA ratio will be off, and the basic OTO/pH 2 way test kit does not contain a way to test your CYA level so you will be flying blind again. The alternative is to get one of the suggested test kits like the TF-100 from the link in my signature and going the full TFP method, which is taught in the pool school link in the upper right of this page. Either way I suggest reading the ABC's section in the pool school link. You can do it either way, the Seasonal guide is a quick and easy method that works most of the time for pool that are small enough to dump and start over if things go wrong. Your pool is on the larger end of that range, but not so much so as to make it not an option. We generally suggest the season pool guide for pools under 3,000 gallons, yours is about 4,500, however it is already mid June so there is not that much more swim season to go in OK. If you had been starting out in April or the first of May I would more strongly suggest going the full TFP method route, either way can work, it is up to you which path to take. Simple, but likely good enough, or frequent testing and perfect water if you follow the method.
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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    How many gals does your pool hold? That will help us know how much to add of each chemical to get your new water up and clear.
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Your pool only holds about 4000 gallons. After you pool has drained and refilled buy a container of CYA (aka stabilizer or conditioner) granules and put about 1 pound in a clean white sock. Tie off the sock and hang it in front of the return flow. Squeeze the sock frequently until the granules have all dissolved. Use Poolmath to determine how much bleach to add. Check and adjust pH if needed.
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    I am heading out now, not sure if I will be back on here until tonight, so I will leave you in kimkats capable hands for now

    p.s and of course Zea's
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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    See if you Walmart has this test kit:

    HTH 6-Way Test Kit - Walmart.com

    This test kit will be good for right now. It has all of the test we use but with small amounts of the regents.

    Look at this link:

    Pool School - Recommended Pool Chemicals

    You will see that most of the stuff can be bought at Walmart or Lowes! Neat huh? Do NOT go out and buy all of it just yet. Just buy some CYA (may be sold as stabilizer) and a couple of gals of Pool Shock (in the pool section of Walmart).

    Let us know if you find the test kit. We can go from there.

    Kim
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Ph is 7.2, chlorine is 0. Total alk 140. Havent drained it yet. Still trying to fix it. Our daughters hair turned green..mild, but still green. Ive been reading about copper and how to get rid of it. Should we mess with copper chelators or still think drain and refill?

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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    What is the Crystal Care Clarifier that we boughy at academy? There are no ingredients on the bottle...

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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    How much does water cost for you there? In the long run, it's usually cheaper and will be entirely reliable to swap the water out in your situation.
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Water is cheap! When we refill, just add CYA granules, bleach, and?

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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Scroll back up to post #4... read that link top to bottom... then come back with questions. You're on the right track!
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    pH
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    Re: New pool--already a disaster!!

    Ok! Got it drained. Going to fill tomorrow. Do we test the water before putting anything in it and go from there? Or go ahead and put some amount of bleach and CYA right off the bat? How much bleach (ballpark) should we buy? Thanks so much for all the advice and encouragement!

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