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Thread: New Quartz Plaster start up questions about balancing

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    Join Date
    May 2007
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    West Chester, PA
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    New Quartz Plaster start up questions about balancing

    Hi!
    Starting the new plaster regime today.
    Here's where I started with new water: (TF-100 test kit)
    Ph 8.0-8.1 (hard to tell when it's that red!)
    TA 60
    CH 120
    Last night I added what Calcium I had left and I earlier today I added about 8 lbs of baking soda and 2 bottles of Jack's Blue Stuff, need a bit more anti-stain stuff....

    Now my numbers are:
    PH still 8.0-8.1
    TA 90
    CH 170

    I just added 16 oz of dry acid. The Pool Calculator says I ultimately need to add 47 oz of acid.

    So finally: HERE'S MY QUESTIONS:

    ***Am I right in assuming I should add the dry acid in segments to avoid big PH shifts? (that's what the advice in Pool School says, but it only mentions that about the liquid acid)

    ***I am getting myself all twisted up about volume and weight--dry acid uses the VOLUME measurement, right?

    ***Can I add calcium around the same time as acid, or should I wait?

    ***I used to have bookmarked in my old computer how long to wait between adding chemicals and testing. Can someone point me in the right direction?

    ***And finally, I am seeing very little dust, is that normal? My filter barely budged after my first brushing.
    Thanks all!
    TF-100 Test Kit, 28,000 gallon IG , 3M quartz plaster '09, 48 sq ft DE filter, Heat Siphon SX5HP heat pump '09, Polaris 360 '10, Protect-A-Child safety fence

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Silver Spring, MD
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    Re: New Quartz Plaster start up questions about balancing

    The very first thing to do is to check with your builder to see if they have any special instructions. You don't want to do anything that might jeopardize your warranty coverage.

    Fresh plaster will raise the PH, TA, and CH levels rapidly for the first three or four weeks, and more slowly after that for up to a year. You need to keep a close eye on the PH and keep it at 7.8 or below at all times if you can and never let it go above 8.0.

    You don't generally want to adjust the TA or CH levels for the first several weeks, because the plaster will be raising them. If you manually raise TA and CH, and then the plaster raises them, they will end up too high.

    It is better to use muriatic acid. It costs less and doesn't add sulfates. Sulfates aren't a huge problem but if they get very high they can cause some minor problems.

    If you are using dry acid, it is better to weigh it, if you have an appropriate scale. If you don't have an appropriate scale you can use volume measurements instead, but they will be less precise. My Pool Calculator lists different numbers for weight and volume measurements.

    Yes, you can add calcium and acid at the same time.

    Waiting an hour after adding dry chemicals and 30 minutes after adding liquids before testing is a good general purpose rule. CYA is the main exception, wait a whole week after adding CYA before testing CYA again.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    West Chester, PA
    Posts
    53

    Re: New Quartz Plaster start up questions about balancing

    Thank you for the info.

    The builder's instructions instruct me to FIRST raise the TA to at least 80 before adjusting the PH, that's why I did that first.

    Can I add all of the dry acid at once? (Our Home Depot doesn't carry the liquid anymore, and I had already had some dry acid from last year...)

    I am only going to raise the CH to 200, again per the builder, and then let it rise as it is bound to do.

    And I will break out my handy postal scale to measure the acid--thanks for the tip.
    TF-100 Test Kit, 28,000 gallon IG , 3M quartz plaster '09, 48 sq ft DE filter, Heat Siphon SX5HP heat pump '09, Polaris 360 '10, Protect-A-Child safety fence

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    May 2007
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    Silver Spring, MD
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    Re: New Quartz Plaster start up questions about balancing

    You don't normally want to make a PH shift of more than about 0.2 all in one go. For larger PH shifts it is best to add about half or 2/3rds of the calculated amount, wait an hour and retest to see where you are.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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