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Thread: trying to balance pool, HELP!

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    trying to balance pool, HELP!

    I'm taking care of, or trying to take care of my pool myself once again. I did a fair job for a while but got a pool service finally. Meanwhile, I was educating myself about all the terms, parts, etc of the equipment and still knew very little about the chemistry. I live in a high wind area, especially spring and fall and I get a lot of debris and dirt/sand/foliage. My pool person told me I needed phosphate remover, which was quite expensive. He said that would solve any algae growth ( I ocassionally get mustard algae at the height of summer and if I do, I only use the algaecide I read about on this site) and he said it would stabilize the water, so I let him go ahead with it. He was doing multiple treatments at first and eventually was doing it once per week and it was expensive! I didn't really like the idea because phosphate remover wasn't one of the things I remembered reading about here so I finally stopped the service. I cleaned the filters and they were coated with a slimy substance. I soaked them in a diluted TSP solution then muriatic acid to get all the slime off. They looked good after and the pressure seems ok, the usual post filter cleaning reading so I don't think that's what's causing my current problem. Which is,
    I cannot get the chlorine level up to even semi normal range. My previous practice was shock once per week and tabs in a floater all summer. And things were ok, I did get calcium scale on my pool tiles but we have hard water here, so? I checked the chlorine/ph weekly in the spring/summer and used acid occasionally. Now I have no chlorine, as in .5 no matter how much bleach i pour in as soon as the sun goes down; Ph is 7.5; FC is 3, CC is 2; CH 800; TA is 300 and CYA is 50. I don't know how these values work together yet, but I have the TF100 test kit and I'm studying. But meanwhile the pool math calculator is telling me to replace my pool water, like 68% of it! and we're in a drought on water restrictions with fines. Is there no other way to decrease the calcium? Is that why the chlorine is disappearing? I quit using tabs and shock (DiChlor I think it was) after I read that those increase calcium and I'm using bleach as instructed. Any advice you can give me will be greatly appreciated. I'm picturing calcium deposits on all the innards and pipes and don't want to damage the equipment or the pool surface.
    I live in Antioch Ca, we are currently on water restrictions. The pool was built 2002, 15,277 gal in-ground gunite pool and spa, rectangle shaped, with Infinity 2000 auto cover, Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter, Larrs LX heater, Ultra Flow pump and Pentair Legend II pressure side cleaner. Whew! And that's all I know right now!
    I am now testing with the TF-100 test kit.

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    Hello and welcome to TFP! If your CYA is correct at 50, there is no need to replace water. Perhaps it has something to do with the way you had some numbers loaded on the calculator. But with cloudiness and an elevated CC, you have algae. You need to SLAM (link below). If you follow the instructions on that page you'll do fine. Based on your TF-100 numbers, here's what I'd recommend for now:
    - Lower pH to 7.2 in preparation for the SLAM
    - Leave CYA alone at 50
    - Increase FC to "20" until you pass all 3 SLAM criteria on that page.

    After the SLAM we will address your TA and CH. But one thing at a time - SLAM to clear/clean that water. They key number right now was that CYA of 50. So as long as you as sure about that CYA test, then we're ready to go. Focus on the FC staying at 20 as much as possible. That's the key, along with everything else on that page. Make sense?
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    Welcome to TFP

    Your calcium CH is high but that is not your problem, but we can fix your problem (after the SLAM we can help with the CSI in poolmath)

    Algae, you have it whether your pool is green or not... You already have the most important tool you can have for a pool, the TF100

    Ok, You are going to SLAM your pool, read over this Pool School - SLAM - Shock Level And Maintain

    For your CYA of 50 Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart you need to bring your free chlorine to 20 and keep it there until you pass the OCLT

    At first it will be hard to get your FC up that high, using poolmath will help very much and make this easy

    put your numbers from yesterday in poolmath in the now column

    in the target column put the following

    FC 20
    PH 7.2
    TA 300 ( we will drop this later)
    CH 800
    CYA 50

    using muriatic Acid drop you PH the amount poolmath tells you to use

    then you start the SLAM, you need a lot of bleach/liquid chlorine, your in cali so you have a HASA dealer near you, see if you can get the 12.5% liquid chlorine from them, you will need about 10 gallons of 12.5%

    Add the amount of 12.5% bleach to your pool to bring FC to 20

    Until you finished with the SLAM and pass the OCLT below only test FC and CC

    I hope this helps
    Pool: Intex 16x32 15000 gal, 2 speed 340042, Pentair CC320 Filter, CircuPool SJ45 Salt System, Intermatic PE653RC; Hot Tub: 650 Gal SWG Megachlor
    links: pool school * Recommended-Levels * SLAM * CYA chart * Test kits * How To Post Pictures * Poolmath * OCLT ** Support your website if we helped you :) **

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    Thank you so much for a fast reply! I'm going to put the muriatic acid in now before i leave for work then i'm going to try to come home for lunch to check ph and add the bleach. I have the recommended amt right now, but I'll have to get more. Pardon my ignorance, but what is a "HASA" dealer? What is HASA? and is that better than using the 6% bleach? or just less volume to add? significant price difference? one more ignorant question: should I keep the cover closed during the SLAM process? the cover is dark green, does that offer any protection from the sun and it's effect on the chlorine? I never add chlorine during the day as it seems a waste, but for the SLAM it sounds like I'll be adding it almost hourly.
    so for now, muriatic acid, 69oz as recommended by the pool math calculator, recheck Ph at noon and add 4 jugs plus one qt of 6% bleach if my Ph is down to 7.2! and I await your reply re: HASA and pool cover- closed or open. Thanks again!

    ps I'm so excited! I love a recipe! I can follow instructions, but no, Texas Splash, it doesn't make sense. yet.
    I live in Antioch Ca, we are currently on water restrictions. The pool was built 2002, 15,277 gal in-ground gunite pool and spa, rectangle shaped, with Infinity 2000 auto cover, Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter, Larrs LX heater, Ultra Flow pump and Pentair Legend II pressure side cleaner. Whew! And that's all I know right now!
    I am now testing with the TF-100 test kit.

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    The higher concentration the bleach, usually the better value, less jug carrying, less pouring. That's all, just enter the % of what you have in the pool calculator.

    Google tells me there is a HASA here 1251 Loveridge Rd, Pittsburg, CA 94565 but it doesn't look like it. HASA stores sell 12.5% bleach.

    It's better to leave the cover off.

    After the first day, when FC is holding somewhat, hourly will be too much. At the very beginning, it might need very quick tests and adds but (hopefully) not for long.
    32K gallon Plaster - 1hp Hayward 2 speed Super Pump - Hayward S200 Sand Filter - TF100XL
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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    Your on it

    Cover off until SLAM is over, you want the sun to burn off the CC

    Hasa dealer usually have better cost per volume of chlorine (sometimes)

    http://www.hasapool.com/dealer_locator_hasa.php

    Pool: Intex 16x32 15000 gal, 2 speed 340042, Pentair CC320 Filter, CircuPool SJ45 Salt System, Intermatic PE653RC; Hot Tub: 650 Gal SWG Megachlor
    links: pool school * Recommended-Levels * SLAM * CYA chart * Test kits * How To Post Pictures * Poolmath * OCLT ** Support your website if we helped you :) **

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    schedule change, can't add the chlorine til I get off work, but I found a HASA dealer in Walnut Creek, not too far. I'll go after work to get some 12.5% chlorine. You said 10 gallons? Hope this does it. I should recheck the Ph again before chlorinating? because I've been adding acid and the Ph hasn't dropped below 7.5 every time I've rechecked it, usually in the am after putting it in at night. So I may need to do it again? and how long after I put the acid in should I check it? and if I get 7.2 Ph I can go ahead with the chlorine? good thing I'm off for a few days after today. Sorry for so many questions. And thanks about the cover, I would have thought it'd be better covered. So off with the cover it is!!
    I live in Antioch Ca, we are currently on water restrictions. The pool was built 2002, 15,277 gal in-ground gunite pool and spa, rectangle shaped, with Infinity 2000 auto cover, Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter, Larrs LX heater, Ultra Flow pump and Pentair Legend II pressure side cleaner. Whew! And that's all I know right now!
    I am now testing with the TF-100 test kit.

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    You may need more than 10 gallons over the course of the SLAM. 10 gallons is a good starting number.

    Before raising the chlorine to SLAM levels, you're correct, you want to use muriatic acid (or dry acid) to lower Ph to 7.2. You won't be able to get a good Ph measurement while you're SLAMing the pool. You can recheck Ph after about half an hour after adding acid with the pump running.

    Leaving the cover off allows the sun to burn off the chemical byproducts of chlorine as it kills the algae.
    8,500gal plaster in-ground with attached spa, two floor drains, one skimmer. Chlorine, City Water.
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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    10 gallons is a guestimate each pool is different, I think they come in 2.5 gallons jugs but not sure, if they are 2.5 grab 2 and when one runs out just stop by and get a new one, they are refillable there, wish we had one anywhere near here the reason I say 10 is you don't want to run out during the SLAM, that's all..

    30 minutes and check PH again with the pump on... if at 7.2/7.3 go ahead and start the SLAM

    Once the SLAM is started run the pump 24/7 until done..

    We love questions, that means your taking control of your pool, great job
    Pool: Intex 16x32 15000 gal, 2 speed 340042, Pentair CC320 Filter, CircuPool SJ45 Salt System, Intermatic PE653RC; Hot Tub: 650 Gal SWG Megachlor
    links: pool school * Recommended-Levels * SLAM * CYA chart * Test kits * How To Post Pictures * Poolmath * OCLT ** Support your website if we helped you :) **

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    well, today was a flop. I had a schedule change, didn't have time to start the bleach at noon. Also couldn't make it to the HASA dealer before closing, but did talk to them-they have plenty, sold in 4 per case gal jugs and they refill them. they open at 9am and I'll be there! So at this point i should just wait til morning I think. I have 5-6 gals of regular laundry bleach but it sounds like i need to correct Ph, check in 30 min, if Ph is down,start putting chlorine in then check every hour correcting til I get FC to 20. So I think I'd just be throwing the bleach away if I start tonight. It sounds like an hour to hour process. Good thing I'm off til Monday! I feel like I need to stay close to home, like waiting for puppies or babies. Any idea how long the hourly part lasts? You all have been great! I'm really hoping as I go through this process I'll be enlightened at least on a superficial level, like what action leads to what result using the limited chemicals involved in this method of pool care. I'm forever grateful for all the advice and instructions and I'm absolutely sure I'll be back...sooner than I think.

    ps am I correct to wait til am? Let me know if you think I should work on the Ph and dump what bleach I have tonight then resume in am after I get more chlorine.
    I live in Antioch Ca, we are currently on water restrictions. The pool was built 2002, 15,277 gal in-ground gunite pool and spa, rectangle shaped, with Infinity 2000 auto cover, Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter, Larrs LX heater, Ultra Flow pump and Pentair Legend II pressure side cleaner. Whew! And that's all I know right now!
    I am now testing with the TF-100 test kit.

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    So I re-read all the responses. pretty much all my questions were already answered. sorry. I think i'm so wound up about this I'm not absorbing all the information I'm reading. So I'm going to get a good nights sleep and start fresh in am and fix this mess in my pool and if I hit a bump, I'll be asking you all what to do next. And I'll keep you posted.
    I live in Antioch Ca, we are currently on water restrictions. The pool was built 2002, 15,277 gal in-ground gunite pool and spa, rectangle shaped, with Infinity 2000 auto cover, Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter, Larrs LX heater, Ultra Flow pump and Pentair Legend II pressure side cleaner. Whew! And that's all I know right now!
    I am now testing with the TF-100 test kit.

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    I'm back. day three of SLAM, it's getting longer and longer between adding chlorine, seems to hold a little longer every time I add some. My question is, I thought someone said or I read in poolschool that you can still use the pool while SLAMing,true? my grands are coming over and I know they're going to want to swim. Also, all the testing has quickly depleted the DPD powder, is there somewhere I can get more? I have enough to get through this SLAM but I've used a lot. I was over testing the first day. Thanks!
    and the pool doesn't smell like bleach and the water is pristine!
    I live in Antioch Ca, we are currently on water restrictions. The pool was built 2002, 15,277 gal in-ground gunite pool and spa, rectangle shaped, with Infinity 2000 auto cover, Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter, Larrs LX heater, Ultra Flow pump and Pentair Legend II pressure side cleaner. Whew! And that's all I know right now!
    I am now testing with the TF-100 test kit.

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    Quote Originally Posted by overmyhead View Post
    I'm back. day three of SLAM, it's getting longer and longer between adding chlorine, seems to hold a little longer every time I add some. My question is, I thought someone said or I read in poolschool that you can still use the pool while SLAMing,true? my grands are coming over and I know they're going to want to swim. Also, all the testing has quickly depleted the DPD powder, is there somewhere I can get more? I have enough to get through this SLAM but I've used a lot. I was over testing the first day. Thanks!
    and the pool doesn't smell like bleach and the water is pristine!
    It is safe to swim if the FC level is below the shock number: http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...art-slam-shock.
    29,000 gallon vinyl liner custom designed lagoon style in-ground pool (self-built 2015-2016), Hayward EcoStar VS pump, Hayward HP21404T Heat Pump (140K BTU), Hayward Pro Grid DE DE6020 Filter with Fiber Clear, Hayward Tiger Shark, 2 Hayward Color-Logic LED lights, Stenner 45MPHP10
    370 gallon Jacuzzi J-345 spa with ClearRay UV

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    Yes, you can swim during a SLAM as long as your FC is not over your SLAM FC level for your CYA. As for the FAS-DPD, you'll need to reorder from TFTestKits HERE.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    thank you!! grands are here, fc is 20 (my slam target)and I'll order more powder now. Thanks again
    I live in Antioch Ca, we are currently on water restrictions. The pool was built 2002, 15,277 gal in-ground gunite pool and spa, rectangle shaped, with Infinity 2000 auto cover, Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter, Larrs LX heater, Ultra Flow pump and Pentair Legend II pressure side cleaner. Whew! And that's all I know right now!
    I am now testing with the TF-100 test kit.

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    my SLAM was going, I thought, really well as the FC was holding longer and longer each time I checked it. Monday I returned to work, that morning 6:30 it was 16, I added the bleach per the poolmath chart, at 6 pm it was 20, rechecked at 10pm, it was 16. I plugged in the number, got the bleach amt required and fell asleep before adding the bleach. first thing in am Tues I checked, it was 14, i corrected with bleach and went to work, at 10 pm it was 16, corrected; this am it was 22 but I'm expecting it'll be much lower by 6pm when i get home. So my question is:
    did i mess up the SLAM when I didn't add the bleach Mon night?
    is it normal for it to take this long (this is day 6)?
    does heat affect the free chlorine level? We've had high temps since the weekend, 104-106 Sat til Tues.
    Also, had the grands over for swimming Sunday, maybe that had something to do with it?
    last question-I've only been doing the FC during the SLAM, using my original values as Cowboy Casey and Texas Splash recommended, the only thing I change is the FC every time i test, then calculate and add the instructed amt of bleach.
    Thanks again for all the help and answers and I hope this is the fix!
    Thanks again for all the advice and answers. Oh, and I've used 7 gallons of 12.5% bleach so far.
    I live in Antioch Ca, we are currently on water restrictions. The pool was built 2002, 15,277 gal in-ground gunite pool and spa, rectangle shaped, with Infinity 2000 auto cover, Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter, Larrs LX heater, Ultra Flow pump and Pentair Legend II pressure side cleaner. Whew! And that's all I know right now!
    I am now testing with the TF-100 test kit.

  17. Back To Top    #17
    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    Well, every SLAM is a it different based on local conditions, how bad the pool was, and consistency of maintaining the FC and scrubbing the pool. But to answer your questions:
    - Did you mess up? Not really. Delays happen when people leave for work or any other factor. All you can do is boost it back up when you get home.
    - As noted above, a SLAM duration varies. If I had to estimate, most SLAM take anywhere from a week to two for pools that were green or quite cloudy, some might go longer if other factors come into play.
    - Heat and sun UV do effect FC levels because at a SLAM, you are above your normal target (to kill algae). When you are over your target, more FC is subject to oxidation quicker, so it's important to maintain that FC as much as possible,
    - Did kids effect the SLAM? I doubt it. Even if there was a little extra urine in the water, the volume of that pool and amount of chlorine quickly neutralized it.
    - Watching the FC is most important during a SLAM. But since you've been at it for a few days, you might want to double-check your CYA as well. If your CYA is higher than you previously thought, then your SLAM level would also increase.

    I'm assuming you are cleaning-out the filter when the pressure increases by 25% and sweeping, scrubbing, and vacuuming consistently too correct? Also make sure there are no hiding places for algae in your pool like ladders, wedding cake steps, or behind a pool light (in the niche). All of those area are notorious for holding stagnant algae-filled water. Using 7 gallons in almost one week is not bad at all. I would think that was low actually in that I would think your FC would require more bleach to keep it maintained. But stick with it and watch your numbers. If you have any more questions, please let us know. Have a nice day.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  18. Back To Top    #18

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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    I have been sweeping, scooping and brushing daily. Also my vac has been running ATC with the pump. I do live in a windy area though and the wind picks up at night. can I close the cover at dusk and open early am for the sun effect? it would cut down a lot on leaves/dirt etc in the pool. RE the pump filters, I didn't clean them again before starting the SLAM because I cleaned them really well with TSP soak followed by soaking in diluted muriatic acid around the end of April, about 6-8 weeks before beginning SLAM. Should I clean them again now though? if so, anything I should look for? or clean with? I didn't see any algae last time but didn't see any in the pool either. I did have a lot of pollen for a while, every where and if I left the cover open it'd be in the pool and a layer of pollen on the water surface. I'm pretty sure it was pollen, I've had mustard algae 2 or 3 times but not for the past 3 years or so. The pollen is easy to sweep up, doesn't return in the same area and if the pool is covered, I don't see any when I open it. That said, since I haven't seen it, I don't know if there is any in hidden places. Unless...the guy at the supply store where I purchased the 12.5% bleach said I could have clear algae, he said you can't see it but it feels slimy on the walls of the pool. I haven't noticed any slimy coating on the walls, but when I cleaned the filters they had a slimy substance on them which I thought was from the multiple additions (weekly for several weeks, maybe months) of phosphate remover, which the pool maintenance guy was putting in the pool. Also looks like the pressure is about the same, but I'll clean them again this weekend if that'll help the process. Meanwhile, it's a relief to know it's not unusual to go this long with the SLAM, I will test the CYA too. Would it be expected to change during the SLAM? and if it has, just put that number in pool math with FC and adjust as calculated?
    I live in Antioch Ca, we are currently on water restrictions. The pool was built 2002, 15,277 gal in-ground gunite pool and spa, rectangle shaped, with Infinity 2000 auto cover, Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter, Larrs LX heater, Ultra Flow pump and Pentair Legend II pressure side cleaner. Whew! And that's all I know right now!
    I am now testing with the TF-100 test kit.

  19. Back To Top    #19
    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: trying to balance pool, HELP!

    can I close the cover at dusk and open early am for the sun effect?
    Absolutely!
    Should I clean them again now though?
    - Only rinse them when filter pressure increases by about 25%
    I will test the CYA too. Would it be expected to change during the SLAM? and if it has, just put that number in pool math with FC and adjust as calculated?
    Correct! If your CYA is higher, then you first look at the Chlorine/CYA Chart (link below) and find the matching FC for that new CYA and adjust accordingly.

    Hope that helps.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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