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Thread: Starting to DIY my Endless Pool Swimspa

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    Austin, TX
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    Endless in Austin

    Hello all,

    I've lived in Austin, TX for 16+ years and I bought an Endless Pool swimspa a little over a year ago. I've been paying a service to clean and take care of the chemical for me, and it was going fine for about a year. Lately they've swapped in a new guy, and he's been dumping crazy loads of chems in there (and charging me for them) with terrible results. I ordered a TFT100 test kit and just ran through all the tests. The dude was here last Thursday, today's Tuesday, and FC = 0, CC = 0.5, pH is at least 8.2 (that sure is a pretty dark pink color), TA = 400, CYA = 90. The guy has been pouring liquid chlorine in like it's going out of style, and two weeks ago he added a bromine floater.

    Long story short (too late), I think it's time to fire the expensive pool guy and take matters into my own hands. I keep the pool covered about 22 hours a day, with a thick, insulated spa cover. That means cleaning is never a problem. It also helps with temperature management. Even with daytime high air temps of 95-100 for the last couple of weeks, the pool water is a nice 83. Since it essentially never needs much cleaning, chems are the only thing to worry about.

    I love the endless pool, but now I need to actually understand the water chemistry, so here's hoping TFP can help!

    Thanks,
    Robert
    1745 gal, above ground, outdoor, fiberglass Endless Pool swimspa. 2 Pleatco PWW50L cartridge filters, unknown pump

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Endless in Austin

    Hello Robert and welcome to TFP! Please start your TFP experience by visiting the Pool School page (link below or on home page). From there, make sure to have the proper test kit. We advocate either the TF-100 or Taylor K-2006C (link below). That's where it all starts. Nice to have you with us.
    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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    Re: Endless in Austin

    I do have the TF-100. I called it the TFT100 in my initial post, I guess. I've been reading the school pages for a week or so, while waiting for the test kit to arrive. I'm on call this week, so a bit too busy to actually get into the nuts and bolts, but I'm sure I'll be asking questions next week, when I have time to mess with things a bit.
    1745 gal, above ground, outdoor, fiberglass Endless Pool swimspa. 2 Pleatco PWW50L cartridge filters, unknown pump

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Endless in Austin

    Welcome to TFP!

    With high PH and high TA you are at risk of calcium scaling. What is your CH?

    Also, did you follow the TA test directions completely, including wiping the bottle tip? If not, that can cause a false high reading.

    Your pool is really more spa. The best way to control PH is to actively lower TA to 50 and add 59 ppm of borates. Follow the PH and TA section of this, How do I use Chlorine in my Spa (or pool)?
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    Re: Endless in Austin

    I added some bleach this morning, and repeated all the tests this afternoon, being careful to do them as precisely by the directions as possible. I used the taylor speedstir gadget, which was pretty spiffy.

    FC = 1.5
    CC = 0.5
    TC = 2.0
    pH = 8.2+
    CH = 100
    TA = 320
    CYA = 90

    The EP manual recommends:

    FC = 1.5
    PH = 7.5
    CH = 180
    TA = 100
    CYA = 20-50

    Started a new thread for this in the "Getting Started" topic: Starting to DIY my Endless Pool Swimspa
    1745 gal, above ground, outdoor, fiberglass Endless Pool swimspa. 2 Pleatco PWW50L cartridge filters, unknown pump

  6. Back To Top    #6

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    Starting to DIY my Endless Pool Swimspa

    I already posted most of this in the "Introduce Yourself" topic, but it seems more appropriate here, really.

    I've had my endless pool for just over a year. I've been paying a service to clean and take care of the chemical for me, and it was going fine for about a year. Lately they've swapped in a new guy, and he's been dumping crazy loads of chems in there (and charging me for them) with terrible results. I ordered a TF-100 test kit and just ran through all the tests (twice, actually).

    The pool is outside, above ground, and is covered with an insulated spa cover about 22 hours/day, so it doesn't get much direct sun. The water stays around 83 degrees, though I got it down to 82 today, despite the 95+ degree highs.

    Test results, 6 hours after adding 16oz 6% bleach:

    FC = 1.5
    CC = 0.5
    TC = 2.0
    pH = 8.2+
    CH = 100
    TA = 320
    CYA = 90

    The EP manual recommends:

    FC = 1.5
    PH = 7.5
    CH = 180
    TA = 100
    CYA = 20-50

    Only the FC recommendation differs from the TFP recommendations... maybe because there's a UV treatment system too?

    Edit: I just used the Taylor K-1005 kit that came with the pool to do the acid demand test. It indicates I'll need 1lb 3oz of dry acid to bring the pH down to 7.5.
    Last edited by cord; 07-06-2016 at 04:08 PM. Reason: add Taylor acid demand test results
    1745 gal, above ground, outdoor, fiberglass Endless Pool swimspa. 2 Pleatco PWW50L cartridge filters, unknown pump

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Endless in Austin

    Just ignore the outdated manual references. They are just that - outdated. You have two BIG issues right now ... and elevated CYA level and very high pH. Actually, your TA is quite high as well. Here's your first decision - decide on whether you want to lower CYA a bit for easier pool management. My CYA is at 60-70, the higher you go the higher your FC needs to be. Your FC is under 2, so I'm surprised you don't have algae yet. If you chose to not exchange water, then pump that FC up immediately to about 12. Never let it go below 7.

    From there, you need to lower pH. PH will probably continue to rise with that elevated TA, so you'll want to follow the instructions listed on the Pool School - Lower Total Alkalinity page. When you do that method, make sure to take full advantage of lowering pH to 7.0 and not hitting ti with acid again until the pH rises to 7.8.

    You can leave CH alone for now. But definitely get some bleach in there ASAP and take care of that pH. Now "IF" you see ANY cloudiness or algae, let us know and that might change the game plan a bit okay.

    Let us know if you have any questions.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Oooh, also check your sig. It shows a pool size of "1650 gal".
    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!

  8. Back To Top    #8

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    Jul 2016
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    Austin, TX
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    Re: Endless in Austin

    I just checked the manual, and 1650 is incorrect... it's actually 1745 gallons. The whole pool is only 15' x 7' 7" x 4' to 4' 6". It's really just an oversized hot tub with cool water in it.

    I just found out that the pool "professionals" broke off parts of my filter cartridge system, so I'm going to have to drain the pool completely to have it repaired. I'll start over from zero when that repair is done.
    1745 gal, above ground, outdoor, fiberglass Endless Pool swimspa. 2 Pleatco PWW50L cartridge filters, unknown pump

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    Re: Endless in Austin

    I've been SLAMming the pool for 3 days, and I think I've finally got things just about under control. My overnight chlorine loss was about 1.5. The pool was never green or cloudy, but I did notice that a bottle I filled with water about 5 days ago started turning green on the bottom, so I guess I had an algae bloom trying to start.

    Thanks for the advice!
    1745 gal, above ground, outdoor, fiberglass Endless Pool swimspa. 2 Pleatco PWW50L cartridge filters, unknown pump

  10. Back To Top    #10

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    Oct 2014
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    Seattle, WA
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    Re: Endless in Austin

    May I suggest that you calculate your pool volume yourself? My EP is 14' by 8' by 3.75' and definitely holds more than what you think your larger pool holds.....
    Gallon Calculator
    3150 gallon (8'x14'x3.75') vinyl lined Original Endless Pool opened 10/10/2014 - chlorine based with UV sanitizer, 50 SF filter cartridge, AG outdoors with opaque retractable cover, Gecko controller In.ex 4 Kw heater, 88 F, triple insulated; Sundance Altamar 390 gallon spa opened July 2000; chlorine based conversion from Baqua Oct 2014; outdoors, on deck, covered, 98F, no ozonator/sanitizer, 125 SF filter cartridge. FAS-DPD chlorine testing.

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    JesseSchmidt's Avatar
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    Re: Starting to DIY my Endless Pool Swimspa

    Using the dimensions you listed in post #8 I get a volume of 3600 gallons. Make sure you update PoolMath with the correct volume. With that little water, you definitely should drain/refill to get your CYA into the 30-50 range. That will make it easier to maintain proper FC levels.

    How is the pool looking today? What are your latest test number?
    26k Gal IG vinyl, Hayward Super 1HP, Hayward Pro Series S244T Sand Filter, TFTestkits TF-100 w/ Speedstir
    Links: TFPC for Beginners / ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry / GETTING STARTED / PoolMath / SLAM / TFTestkits / Chlorine/CYA Chart

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