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Thread: High Chlorine and stabilizer levels and water starting to turn green and cloudy

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    High Chlorine and stabilizer levels and water starting to turn green and cloudy

    I noticed yesterday that our small, in-ground, 5K gal, gunite pool started turning from clear blue to a clear aqua color and there seems to be yellowish stains on parts of the sides and steps. I tried brushing it, but it doesn't react like algae and brush away. It seems more like a pale stain (similar to metal stains I would occasionally get in a previous pool). I had a sample tested today at our local pool store:
    chlorine: 5.0
    stabilizer: 100
    alkalinity: 0
    pH: 6.2

    I had added 1/2 # of shock, replaced the two 3" chlorine tabls as well as some stabilizer because it seems the chlorine level would go from 5.0 to non-existant in a day during the past week. so, I wasn't surprised that the chlorine and stabilizer levels were high. I was told to remove the 3" chlorine tabs from the pool, and then add 6# of alkalinity increaser. A couple hours later I was to add 8 oz pH plus. I did as directed and now it seems like the pool is getting a bit more cloudy. I also drained about 3 inches of water and am currently adding more water to try to bring down the chlorine level. The guy at the pool store wasn't very helpful when I asked about what might cause the sudden change. Any help or insight you can provide would be greatly appreciated.

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: High Chlorine and stabilizer levels and water starting to turn green and cloudy

    Oh my... the pool store will sell you things but can't admit what the problem is? Typical.

    You need your own tester otherwise you'll be sucked in to buying pool store chemicals because theyre providing those *free* tests. Sadly they're rarely accurate.
    You also probably paid top dollar for that "Alkilinity Increaser" which is in fact just basic Baking Soda!! You can buy that for just a few bucks in large bags at Costco.
    The "pH Plus" is an expensive pool version whereas we use Borax from the laundry aisle.

    We don't advocate the use of chlorine pucks as they've raised your stabilizer level to unmanageable levels, and your chlorine has to be higher to compensate. Do they tell you that they contain stabilizer too? A lot of folks come here after their pools turn green and they had no idea.

    Please start reading some PoolSchool articles--> ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry FC/CYA Chart and you need to order a test kit which contains the *all important* FAS-DPD chlorine tester. Very few kits contain this, but its what will make your pool sparkle and save you TONS of money in th end. It can be found at TFTestkits.net

    In the mean time I would suggest adding 1/2 gallon of plain household bleach to the pool nightly and brushing while you figure out if you want to drain and refill or fix the water you have.

    Holler back with any questions.
    My Amazon Smile for November12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: High Chlorine and stabilizer levels and water starting to turn green and cloudy

    Welcome to TFP!

    Yep, get one of these, Pool School - Test Kits Compared
    I use the TF-100 from TFTestkits.net.
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: High Chlorine and stabilizer levels and water starting to turn green and cloudy

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    I agree you need a test kit.

    With CYA that high (or likely even higher), you are looking at at least a 50% water replacement.

    And just to point out how bad their testing is: having a pH of 6.8 and a TA of 0 is impossible. If TA is truly 0, then your pH is in the 4s.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: High Chlorine and stabilizer levels and water starting to turn green and cloudy

    Thanks for the help. I currently use a 6-way test kit as well as the borax and baking soda for increasing pH and alkalinity. I was hoping the pool store clerk would have some suggestions (WRONG!) as others there have been very helpful in the past. I will definitely look at the TF test kits though since they've been recommended by a couple people. I've dealt other issues with this pool and our previous pool, including turning green, but this the first time I've seen it start to turn color with a high chlorine level. I used to just shock it and it was looking dramatically better the next day. This time it has basically turned more aqua green than blue but the water is still quite clear. I would like to try to treat the water as opposed to partially draining it if possible. I am draining 3 inches at a time, adding new water, let the water filter/circulate for a bit and repeating the process. Will adding the 1/2 gallon of bleach increase my chlorine level even more?

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: High Chlorine and stabilizer levels and water starting to turn green and cloudy

    IT is turning green because your CYA is so high. The higher the CYA, the higher you have to maintain the FC to keep a clear pool and the higher you have to raise the FC to kill and eliminate algae.

    Look at the FC/CYA Chart, this relationship is ignored by the pool industry even though it was proven 40 year ago.

    Have you discovered Pool School yet? Start with these:
    ABCs of Water Chemistry
    Recommended Pool Chemicals
    How to Chlorinate Your Pool
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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