In Atlanta and making all the typical mistakes. The chlorine pool had been managed by pool people in the past that best I can tell just shocked it all the time and used trichlor tabs between shocks. 4 days into owning the house the old 1HP pump died. The 1HP and the polaris booster had been running for years 24/7 as the timer was inoperable. So time for an upgrade. I went all in and got an Intelliflo VS with a pentair chlorinator. Pool guy said the pool was about 20-25K gallons. So I went with the IC40 tcell chlorinator and an easytouch panel to run it.
I discovered that the $10 test kit from home depot does not read accurately at all. It was reading FC of 3. My Taylor kit came in and it read an FC=9. I then tested CYA and found it to be >>100 probably 110 or 120. Pool guy says "not to worry the conditioner will get washed out".
Pool guy hooked up my pump, control panel and chlorinator "sort of" but got it running. I had to rewire it to get the pumps and program everything to work right. Finally all is working and the 16 bags of 40# salt pool guy put in all dissolved --> Pool tasted salty. Salt leveled out at 4500ppm per the pentair system (!). I had the pump running about 10-12h/day and had chlorinator on 50%. Yesterday I tested the FC again and found it to be about 21 !! Must be the smaller-than-advertised pool, the high salt and the warm water lately I guess. It shot from FC=7.5 to 21 in 72 hours.
So last night I bit the bullet and drained what I expect to be about 25% of the water. It will be refilled by tonight. Hopefully this drops the CYA and salt enough. And I will turn down the chlorinator. I am discovering what most of you already have: that a little reading and forethought will run circles around the pool guy, especially if already a DIYer in life. After chemistry gets balanced I will then work on getting the right breakers for the control panel installed to replace the wire nuts there now...