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Thread: High TA and aeration

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    tea4dong's Avatar
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    High TA and aeration

    Hello all, long-time lurker, first-time poster. Last house had an in-ground plaster pool, but our new home is sadly pool-less. I bought a small Intex above-ground pool about 10 days ago, and have been having some slight difficulty with high TA contributing to a high CSI.

    According to my Taylor K-2006's CSI wheel, I'm at 0.5, which I believe is on the high side of good. Problem is, the PH keeps falling (even though my TA is at about 130), so I keep having to add Borax (which is just making the problem worse). I never had to worry about this with my last pool. So, I decided to look into aeration.

    Using a garden hose, a gun-style spray nozzle, and a C-clamp, I rigged up a crude aerator. Granted, it only works when I need to add water to the pool, but I figure if I keep at it, I should gradually be able to repeat the cycle of adding MA and then aerating to get me back into proper balance.

    Comments? Suggestions? Anyone have an idea of why my PH keeps falling, in spite of a relatively high TA?
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Intex above-ground 1,700 gallon pool
    530 GPH pump

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    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    How are you chlorinating the pool?
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
    40x20 Pool: 32K Gallons * Vinyl * Bleach Chlorination * Hayward S270T Sand Filter * Pentair SuperFlo 1 HP * Teledyne/Laars Heater * AquaVac Tigershark * TF-100 w/ SpeedStir
    Isolated Spa - 345 Gallons

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    Why are you even worried about CSI with that pool? Scale should never become an issue.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    tea4dong's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    Quote Originally Posted by mas985 View Post
    Why are you even worried about CSI with that pool? Scale should never become an issue.
    Well, I didn't realize that it wouldn't be an issue with this pool. I was going off the information in my Taylor test kit. It says the water can become cloudy if the CSI is too high.

    I was under the impression that calcium hardness isn't an issue for vinyl.

    Joel, I'm using regular household bleach to chlorinate. 8.25%, in case it matters.
    Intex above-ground 1,700 gallon pool
    530 GPH pump

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    I think CSI would have to be extremely high before the water would turn cloudy. 0.5 should not be an issue.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    I only asked how you were chlorinating because trichlor and dichlor usage can drive pH downward. With bleach, you should not have that issue.
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
    40x20 Pool: 32K Gallons * Vinyl * Bleach Chlorination * Hayward S270T Sand Filter * Pentair SuperFlo 1 HP * Teledyne/Laars Heater * AquaVac Tigershark * TF-100 w/ SpeedStir
    Isolated Spa - 345 Gallons

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    tea4dong's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    Quote Originally Posted by mas985 View Post
    I think CSI would have to be extremely high before the water would turn cloudy. 0.5 should not be an issue.
    Well, though it's not currently an issue, if I keep going the way I have been, TA will be at 200 in a couple of weeks, and continue to climb. I'm trying to be proactive so that it doesn't end up becoming an issue.

    Guess I'll just have to keep up the aeration. Anyone have a better idea than the one pictured above?

    I appreciate all the input.
    Intex above-ground 1,700 gallon pool
    530 GPH pump

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    What is driving up your TA? Just the borax? Stop using it.

    Drop the PH so CSI < 0.5 and keep it there. Eventually, TA will drop.

    I have chronically high TA and CH because of my fill water. I don't bother trying to lower TA since it will just go back up again. Instead, to keep CSI slightly negative for my plaster and SWG, I keep the PH at the lower end (7.2-7.4).
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    tea4dong's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    Mark, I appreciate your input, but I also feel like you're not listening to me. You've basically just restated the problem using different words.

    My PH falls daily. I added Borax a couple times, thinking the PH would stabilize (due to higher TA levels), but it didn't. So yes, I've stopped using Borax and am now looking at aeration as a solution. I simply think it's odd that I'm having this problem, since TFP states that at higher TA levels, PH tends to drift up.

    I can't really drop the PH as you suggest, because it already does that on its own. Aeration seems to be my only solution, but I'm having difficulty finding a solution. The garden hose method I started employing only works when the pool is in need of water.
    Intex above-ground 1,700 gallon pool
    530 GPH pump

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    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    I would make or purchase a fountain attachment for your return. Amazon.com : Splash Pools 30700 Waterfall Pool Fountain : Swimming Pool Pump Accessories : Patio, Lawn Garden

    That way you can increase your aeration without adding water.
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
    40x20 Pool: 32K Gallons * Vinyl * Bleach Chlorination * Hayward S270T Sand Filter * Pentair SuperFlo 1 HP * Teledyne/Laars Heater * AquaVac Tigershark * TF-100 w/ SpeedStir
    Isolated Spa - 345 Gallons

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    Exactly how low is the PH?

    My point was to just keep PH at the low end of the range and CSI should be fine.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    tea4dong's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    Joel, that's a good idea. Unfortunately, my pool basically sucks and none of the fountain attachments I've looked at will fit. The return is funky, nothing like what I've seen on other pools. I'll post a picture later once I get home.

    Mark, sorry, I didn't mean to be snippy. The PH falls .2-3 every day. I don't let it go below 7.2. Even when I'm deliberately lowering the PH with MA after aerating, I don't like taking it below 7.2.

    Edit: I also suspect the 530 GPH pump that came with the pool is terribly undersized, and probably isn't powerful enough to drive a waterfall.
    Intex above-ground 1,700 gallon pool
    530 GPH pump

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: High TA and aeration

    I really think you are trying to fix a problem that does not exist. Technically, all your levels are within a reasonable range so just work with what you have. Keep PH at 7.2 and only add acid when the PH climbs. Once TA gets low enough so CSI starts to go negative, at that point you can allow PH to increase. Remember that the biggest influence to CSI is PH. So if you keep that at 7.2 and TA does not increase, CSI will remain stable.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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