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Thread: cant hold chlorine

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    cant hold chlorine

    I bought my house 4 yrs. ago that has an inground pool. I am a novice pool owner and did not have any problems the first two years. Last yr when i opened it, it did not hold chlorine when I first opened it. I had to triple shock it twice and everything was fine. I had the same problem this yr. and the pool still will not hold chlorine. I usually did whatever the pool store told me to do, but I have spent more money this yr. than the past three years combined. The last time I was there they told me I have nitrates, and that's why my pool is not holding chlorine. I found this website and it has really opened my eyes. I was looking around on the website and found some interesting information. I finally bought my own test kit, but am a little nervous using it. I am at my wits end trying to keep chlorine in this pool and am also tired of shelling out a ton of money and nothing is happening. My pool is a little cloudy right now, when I got the water tested here were the results:
    FC-0
    TA-80
    PH-8.0
    Hardness-300
    Nitrates-15
    This is the first time my Ph was high. I need help. I need a step by step process of what I need to do. Thanks in advance for your help.
    16x32 19000 gal Sun most of day Hayward 1.0 HP D.E. Filter Vinyl liner Taylor K-2006 Test Kit Feasterville, PA

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: Can't hold chlorine

    Welcome to the forum.

    I finally bought my own test kit, but am a little nervous using it.
    Tell us the brand and model # of the kit....we'll get started helping you clear your pool.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    bmoreswim's Avatar
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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    Welcome to TFP! Glad to have you here.

    I'll give you two links...

    One for the basics of chemistry that we follow here:

    abc-of-pool-water-chemistry

    And one for the process you need to follow now since your pool is cloudy and you have no FC.

    SLAM - shock level and maintain

    What we practice here is in conflict with Pool Store advice. Its about understanding what your pool needs and what chemical additions will do to your pool. You will need to follow our recommendations or those of the Pool Store, following both won't work. That also means not letting them test your water. Trust your results.

    Please post your results in the following format for us to begin:

    FC
    pH
    TA
    CH
    CYA

    If you are all in with our methods, you will be chlorinating with plain old bleach going forward. Testing and dosing daily. And your pool will be Trouble Free.
    18'x38' Rectangle (3'-8 1/2' deep w/ diving board) - 27K gal. w/ gray plaster
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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    Did you test for CYA?
    10K gal, pebble tec, 2.5 HP pump, 600 sqft DE filter (Hayward DE6020), Chlorinated, Hayward Navigator
    TF-100 Test Kit
    Phoenix, AZ

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Can't hold chlorine

    We need to know your CYA level.
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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: Can't hold chlorine

    My Cya was 40
    Test kit-Taylor k-2006
    16x32 19000 gal Sun most of day Hayward 1.0 HP D.E. Filter Vinyl liner Taylor K-2006 Test Kit Feasterville, PA

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    With CYA at 40 your FC needs to be above 3 at all times, FC/CYA Chart. When FC drops below 3 the pool is unsanitary, algae, bacteria, viruses and pathogens can grow and the there is increased risk of person to person disease transmission.

    Often when there is difficulty maintaining chlorine it is because algae is growing in the pool. The easiest way to determine if there is algae growing in the pool is to do an Overnight Chlorine Loss Test. If it doesn't pass then kill the algae using this process, SLAM.
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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    If I have a reading of 0 for chlorine before I do test, what should I put in and how much?
    16x32 19000 gal Sun most of day Hayward 1.0 HP D.E. Filter Vinyl liner Taylor K-2006 Test Kit Feasterville, PA

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    Use Poolmath to calculate your doses. Enter your test results in Now, pool gallons, pool type, etc and it will calculate your dose to get to target. You can verify targets here, Pool School - Recommended Levels. If the number is in range make target equal now so it doesn't tell you to add something. More here on pool chems, Pool School - Recommended Pool Chemicals

    If you like detailed instructions they are here, Pool School - PoolMath
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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: cant hold chlorine

    So I added the correct amount of chlorine to do the OCLT that should take me from 0 to 5 FC. I let it circulate into the pool and then tested for FC. It only showed up as 1.4. I definitely have the right pool measurements and depth. What am I doing wrong?
    16x32 19000 gal Sun most of day Hayward 1.0 HP D.E. Filter Vinyl liner Taylor K-2006 Test Kit Feasterville, PA

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    Probably nothing. There is probably some yuck in there using it up. Aim for 10 ppm this time.
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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: cant hold chlorine

    Tested water last night and FC was 10.2. Tested water this morning and FC was 5. Is my next step slamming, and if it is, can I Slam in the rain? We are supposed to get some today and tomorrow.
    16x32 19000 gal Sun most of day Hayward 1.0 HP D.E. Filter Vinyl liner Taylor K-2006 Test Kit Feasterville, PA

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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    Time for SLAM. Rain does not matter.
    Matt
    2016 Pool Build: 12k IG Blue Granite Pebblesheen, Travertine Coping & Pavers, Pentair IntelliFlo, Intellichlor, Easytouch, Clean & Clear 320, Heliocol Solar - TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    SWG Run Time Calculator

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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    Just so I understand this. After putting in the initial dose of bleach, should I test and make sure I am at shock level? After that, how many times do you recommend I test throughout the day to make sure I stay at that level?
    16x32 19000 gal Sun most of day Hayward 1.0 HP D.E. Filter Vinyl liner Taylor K-2006 Test Kit Feasterville, PA

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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    Quote Originally Posted by Jluke120 View Post
    Just so I understand this. After putting in the initial dose of bleach, should I test and make sure I am at shock level? After that, how many times do you recommend I test throughout the day to make sure I stay at that level?
    As much as you can, ideally every hour until you hold chlorine longer. Leave the pump running 24/7, check your pressure and brush. Brushing is really important brush, brush, brush.
    16x32 IG rectangular 21,800k new vinyl liner 2014, Triton II TR 50 sand Filter, Pentair 3/4 hsp whisperflow pump, 3 returns, TF100 test kit w/speedstir. Maytronics s 300i robot.

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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    With your CYA of 40, you'll want to increase FC to 16 with regular bleach. Let it mix for about 10 minutes then check again to see if it's holding at 16. You may need to do it that way (if you can every 10-15 minutes) for the first 2-3 times just to make sure the FC is holding its own because when you first start a SLAM the FC might want to drop quickly. Eventually you'll be able to back-off of the testing so frequently. Once the FC begins to hold better, you might be able to just test mid-morning, lunch, mid-afternoon, then evening. You'll see a pattern that works for you based on FC drop. Good luck!
    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
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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    You want to test and dose back to shock level as often as is feasible for you. If you have to work, test/dose before work, when you get home and before bed. If you are able to go home at lunch and do it again, that's a bonus. The more often you can get the FC level back to shock, the faster the SLAM will go. But everyone has time constraints, it will still work testing/dosing less often. Good luck and keep us updated!
    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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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    Thanks for the info. I will keep you posted.
    16x32 19000 gal Sun most of day Hayward 1.0 HP D.E. Filter Vinyl liner Taylor K-2006 Test Kit Feasterville, PA

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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    Two questions. Should I have my chlorinator open all the way during this process? Is it ok to be over the shock total of 16?
    16x32 19000 gal Sun most of day Hayward 1.0 HP D.E. Filter Vinyl liner Taylor K-2006 Test Kit Feasterville, PA

  20. Back To Top    #20

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    Re: cant hold chlorine

    It is usually recommended to your chlorinator/SWG so that you don't have other variables and you will know right right dosage.
    Matt
    2016 Pool Build: 12k IG Blue Granite Pebblesheen, Travertine Coping & Pavers, Pentair IntelliFlo, Intellichlor, Easytouch, Clean & Clear 320, Heliocol Solar - TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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