I was probably way overdue for a drain/refill on my 300 gal. above ground, stand alone spa. Prior to doing the drain/fill, I followed the directions and used Ahh-Some to kill any serious bacteria that was not killed by regular sanitation. After the treatment, was eye-opening to see all the bacteria and scum line that formed. Glad I used that stuff to kill anything thriving in the plumbing.
I followed the directions here at TFP for the 3 step bromine system, which uses a bromine floater. I attempted to balance my water chemistry before starting my bromide bank. I tried to adjust the pH from >8.2 with 31.45% MA, but doing so also lowered my TA. So, I added some baking soda to bring my TA back up. But, then after some additions, running the jets, and subsequent retesting, I noticed my pH was up again. So, I decided I was not going to sweat it and get caught up in a pH/TA dance. I added 1.5 oz (which was for 300 gal.) of my bromide starter, shocked it with 90 ml of 12.5% chlorine (I used 90 ml b/c I did not want my Br going sky high), and later I threw in my bromine floater.
Here are my #s from today. I was not going to treat the pH but rather let it naturally fall due to the net acidity effects of the bromine tabs. But, perhaps it will take too long.
Water temp 101 degrees
pH 8.0-8.2 (somewhere in there)
Br 6 (tested with the OTO test)
My CSI is about 0.36 right now, which may be a little high. Generally, over time w/ the evaporation and water additions, my CH will/would increase.
1. Should I bother manually lowering the pH, which will also bring down my TA? Don't think I want to/ought to have my TA go lower.
2. With the old water, I was shocking 1x/wk with about 75ml of 12.5% chlorine. With my brominator open at about 2.5-3, the Br level would eventually drop to about 6-8 toward the end of that week. I shocked with 90 ml of 12.5% chlorine on 6/12, and with my brominator open at 4, my Br is just at about 6. What is going on? Do I have to activate more bromine from my bromide bank?