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Thread: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

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    Major_in_MS's Avatar
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    Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Hello, My name is Major and I'm learning to take care of my first pool. Well, that's not entirely true. My parents moved into a house with a pool when I was ten and I learned a lot about taking care of that pool. (20 x 40 IG Gunite, 9 foot average depth) But this is my first pool as a pool owner.

    So I found this site a few days after wasting some money at the local pool store buying CYA and Phos Away and Refresh. The Refresh I will actually use because my CH is low and even though I have a vinyl liner pool, I don't mind adding some calcium hardness to my water. I'm going to try to return the stabilizer. Turns out my stabilizer level was way high because the previous owners used the pucks in the skimmer basket. Based off the test strips that were left for me my CYA level was 100, and I believed that to be true mainly because they were using pucks, so while I was waiting on my new K-2006C test kit to arrive from amazon I spent four nights at work reading this site. I work as a night shift RN on a pediatric unit at the local hospital and I have a lot of "free time" at work during my 12 hour shifts, so I was able to read through "Pool School" several times and then I started reading through threads in this "Just Getting Started" section.

    Based on what I learned I decided to go ahead and do a water exchange before my test kit arrived to drop my CYA level. So, on Monday, I closed the valve from my skimmer and began draining the pool. I thought, "I'll really get my sand clean by draining through backwash." After about 2 hours of "Backwashing" my sand I realized (Doh) that I was just filtering all this waste water through my sand from the wrong direction and that when I started filtering my water again all this gunk will wash back into my pool, so I jumped up and switched to drain to waste. I lowered my pool water by 3 feet by 1320 (1:20pm for those of you that don't use military time) and dropped three garden hoses into the pool and switched my pump back to filter. At around 1000 Tuesday morning my pool was full again.

    Let me talk about the water for a minute. When I closed on the house on June 27th the water was crystal clear, but I noticed a couple of days later that the water had gotten very cloudy, very quickly. I used the dip stick and found that my chlorine was zero. I added some pucks from the shed to the skimmer basket and threw in 3 pounds of shock from wal-mart and went to work. The next morning the chlorine was still zero, so I added 3 more pounds of shock. Fast forward a few more days of this with no improvement and some money wasted removing Phos thanks to the local pool store. I was at work and I decided to look for a pool forum, first I found a different pool forum, but after registering and reading posts for a couple of nights I realized that the forum owner was missing and that that forum was dying. Then I found TFP, after the first night reading I started putting one gallon of bleach (8.25% great value from walmart) into my water every night while waiting for my test kit.

    My K-2006C test kit arrived last night!!

    My first set of results were:

    2023
    Temp 85 F
    FC 11
    CC 1
    pH 8.0 (I realize this is not accurate due to FC >10)
    TA 190
    CH 40
    CYA between 30 and 40, so we'll say 40

    I really wanted to get my pH reading, so I tested again last night before going to bed to see if my FC was below 10.

    2200
    FC 11.6
    CC 0.2

    No luck, I went to bed.

    This morning at sunrise I tested again.

    0609
    FC 9.4
    CC 0.4
    pH 8.0 (acid demand reagent 6 drops to get to 7.2)
    TA 170
    CH 30
    CYA 40

    So I plugged these numbers into Jesse's Graphical Pool Testing Log spreadsheet and it told me to add 6 cups of Muriatic acid to get my pH to 7.5. I know I need to lower to 7.2 and aerate to bring down my TA, but I didn't want to start of with that much acid, just in case I got my pool volume calculation wrong.

    UPS is supposed to be delivering my zodiac 7-400-00 Polaris Fountain System today. When It comes in I will start aeration and adding more acid.

    My water is still slightly cloudy after the water exchange. I guess I need to keep my FC below 10 until I'm done adjusting the pH and TA, or should I just get the pH to 7.5 and then raise my FC to shock level and SLAM and worry about the TA later?

    I guess that Is the main question for this very long post, What do I do now? The Muriatic acid that I added this morning (at 0720) has been mixing for about an hour and a half. Can I recheck my pH now? What next?

    Thanks


    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
    One skimmer, one main drain, two eyeball jets, and one return from the booster pump.
    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
    I work night shift (Pediatric RN) so most of my posts will be during the night.

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Quote Originally Posted by Major_in_MS View Post
    ... I guess I need to keep my FC below 10 until I'm done adjusting the pH and TA, or should I just get the pH to 7.5 and then raise my FC to shock level and SLAM and worry about the TA later?

    I guess that Is the main question for this very long post, What do I do now? The Muriatic acid that I added this morning (at 0720) has been mixing for about an hour and a half. Can I recheck my pH now? What next?

    Thanks
    First of all great job on doing your homework up front and learning before asking some great questions!

    You are very wise for doing half steps on pH adjustments. Like you said, shoot for 7.5, retest, shoot for 7.2. You can test after 30 minutes of the pump running.

    Yes, worry about TA later, much later. Get that thing SLAMming!
    32K gallon Plaster - 1hp Hayward 2 speed Super Pump - Hayward S200 Sand Filter - TF100XL
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    Major_in_MS's Avatar
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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Bruce View Post
    You are very wise for doing half steps on pH adjustments. Like you said, shoot for 7.5, retest, shoot for 7.2. You can test after 30 minutes of the pump running.

    Yes, worry about TA later, much later. Get that thing SLAMming!
    Ok, I just checked pH again using the K-1001 kit. I assume it is ok to use a different kit, since I'm only testing pH right now and not the full battery. My pH is 7.5, just as it should be according to my last calculation, so I guess I calculated my pool volume right. Pool Math is now telling me to add 2 quarts of the 31.45% muriatic acid to bring it down to 7.2, I guess I'll go ahead and add this dose all at once since the last dose did what I expected it to.

    After I recheck my pH and it's at 7.2 I'll raise my FC to 16 for shock level. Can I do this in one dose, or do I need to use half steps again?
    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
    One skimmer, one main drain, two eyeball jets, and one return from the booster pump.
    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
    I work night shift (Pediatric RN) so most of my posts will be during the night.

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Sounds like you've got the volume pretty close. Go ahead and dose to 16 and test 20-30 minutes later.
    32K gallon Plaster - 1hp Hayward 2 speed Super Pump - Hayward S200 Sand Filter - TF100XL
    Test Kits - Pool Math - Chlorine/CYA/Target/Slam Chart

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    First of all, welcome, and great job on your homework. You must have been a great student!!

    It seems you have your water volume pretty well dead on, so that allows you to plug your numbers into Pool Math and go ahead and add. Add the MA, wait half an hour to let it mix, then add the chlorine. No need for half steps, especially since your stated water volume seems accurate.

    GC
    13'x22'x52" 8,000 gallon ProSeries Pool with Borates
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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    When I add MA, I add about 32 oz at a time which drops PH about .5 per addition. Thatll prolly be pretty close to what you need to drop .3 with 10000 more gal than me...
    MA additions need to be gradual whenever you are playing with your PH/TA..
    Adding bleach can be all at once according to the calculator...

    SLAM IT!!!!!!
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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Quote Originally Posted by cj3737 View Post
    When I add MA, I add about 32 oz at a time which drops PH about .5 per addition. Thatll prolly be pretty close to what you need to drop .3 with 10000 more gal than me...
    MA additions need to be gradual whenever you are playing with your PH/TA..
    Adding bleach can be all at once according to the calculator...

    SLAM IT!!!!!!
    I always added MA in increments as well until I figured the pool volume out correctly. Now I just add it all at one time. For example when I add Borax every year I have to add a ton of MA. I dump the borax in, then I dump the MA in. It's always done as expected. But this can't be done if he's not VERY CONFIDENT that his pool volume is correct.

    GC
    13'x22'x52" 8,000 gallon ProSeries Pool with Borates
    Intex 110 pound Sand Filter with Zeobrite, 2650 gph pump, 0.95 hp
    Bestway SWG
    AquaPro ECO500 50,000 BTU heat pump
    GLI Whirlwind Solar Cover Reel, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Thank you to everybody that replied!

    I'm SLAMming!

    So earlier, I added the 2 more quarts of Muriatic acid, when I tested pH again at 1038 my pH was 7.2, perfect.

    1038

    FC 9.2
    CC 0.2
    pH 7.2
    TA 170
    CH 30
    CYA 40

    Added two 121 oz bottles of 8.25% wally world great value bleach.

    1120 recheck

    FC 16.4
    CC 0.4

    So this is where I want to be for my SLAM, I'll check FC again every couple of hours and add bleach as needed to keep my level at 16.

    When I recheck my FC during the SLAM, can I use the 0.5 ppm per drop/10ml sample to save on R-0871?
    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
    One skimmer, one main drain, two eyeball jets, and one return from the booster pump.
    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
    I work night shift (Pediatric RN) so most of my posts will be during the night.

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Yes. Are you sure you didn't lurk for 3 years before joining
    32K gallon Plaster - 1hp Hayward 2 speed Super Pump - Hayward S200 Sand Filter - TF100XL
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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Quote Originally Posted by Major_in_MS View Post
    When I recheck my FC during the SLAM, can I use the 0.5 ppm per drop/10ml sample to save on R-0871?
    Yes. I pretty much only do the 10ml test. It's accurate enough for what is needed.
    Ponduke
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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Bruce View Post
    Yes. Are you sure you didn't lurk for 3 years before joining
    It was a very slow week at the hospital. I did a LOT of reading.

    Quote Originally Posted by bmann71 View Post
    Yes. I pretty much only do the 10ml test. It's accurate enough for what is needed.
    Thanks, I'll be using the 10 ml test also.
    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
    One skimmer, one main drain, two eyeball jets, and one return from the booster pump.
    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
    I work night shift (Pediatric RN) so most of my posts will be during the night.

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Uh, I don't think you need us!!! I'll contact you when I need your assistance sir.

    GC
    13'x22'x52" 8,000 gallon ProSeries Pool with Borates
    Intex 110 pound Sand Filter with Zeobrite, 2650 gph pump, 0.95 hp
    Bestway SWG
    AquaPro ECO500 50,000 BTU heat pump
    GLI Whirlwind Solar Cover Reel, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatCanadian View Post
    Uh, I don't think you need us!!! I'll contact you when I need your assistance sir.

    GC
    Oh but I do need you all! This forum makes taking care of the pool so much more social.
    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
    One skimmer, one main drain, two eyeball jets, and one return from the booster pump.
    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
    I work night shift (Pediatric RN) so most of my posts will be during the night.

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Good morning everybody,

    I have a new question!

    I hope it's ok to just keep them in this thread instead of starting a new one.

    My pool area has a water feature that is separate from the pool. It is kind of a goldfish pond, only to shallow to actually support goldfish. The only thing is was growing was algae. Since I had a box of that clorox pool shock stuff that I bought before I knew better, I decided to use it to kill that algae reservoir. So I threw in 3 pounds. Overnight all the green was gone and the water was very clear. Now, a few days later, there is a layer of bubbles floating on the surface of the water, like somebody dosed it with bubble bath. I assume this is from proteins release by destruction of the organics that were living in the pond. What do I need to put in there to fix that? (see photos)



    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
    One skimmer, one main drain, two eyeball jets, and one return from the booster pump.
    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
    I work night shift (Pediatric RN) so most of my posts will be during the night.

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    Major_in_MS's Avatar
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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    My next Question:

    I have been poorly managing my SLAM due to the fact that I work 12 hour shifts at night. I have managed to test and add chlorine twice daily most days. I know y'all like to see test results so I'm going to try to add a screen capture.



    Should I teach my wife to do the tests and add the chlorine, or will I eventually finish my SLAM doing it twice daily?
    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
    One skimmer, one main drain, two eyeball jets, and one return from the booster pump.
    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
    I work night shift (Pediatric RN) so most of my posts will be during the night.

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    Major_in_MS's Avatar
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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    I forgot to add the latest test this morning after adding the chlorine.

    FC 16.5
    CC 0

    I'm off today and tomorrow, so hopefully I will be able to keep track of my levels more frequently for a couple of days.
    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
    One skimmer, one main drain, two eyeball jets, and one return from the booster pump.
    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
    I work night shift (Pediatric RN) so most of my posts will be during the night.

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    During a SLAM, your PH tests are not accurate. So we don't do the PH test/adjustments until after the SLAM is finished.
    The PH test goes all wrong at a FC count of 10ppm or greater.
    14600 gal Intex 24' Round 52" deep AG Pool (Heavily Modified)
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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Your SLAM will continue to progress with twice a day additions. More would be better, but not essential to success. And you can't work 12 hours a day every day. Can you? So, eventually you will be able to spend a little extra time with the pool.

    I think the pond will out gas and clear itself without adding more stuff to it. If anything I would drain it and refill it.

    +1 to only testing FC and CC during SLAM. Maybe check CYA every 4-6 days or so to make sure something isn't chewing on it.

    Pool looks good! Nice job!
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    Major_in_MS's Avatar
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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    Quote Originally Posted by RonsPlc View Post
    During a SLAM, your PH tests are not accurate. So we don't do the PH test/adjustments until after the SLAM is finished.
    The PH test goes all wrong at a FC count of 10ppm or greater.
    Question: When FC is 10 or greater, does it cause the pH to give false low or false high results? I kind of believed my pH reading because I've had the fountain going the whole time to aerate the water.

    Quote Originally Posted by pooldv View Post
    Your SLAM will continue to progress with twice a day additions. More would be better, but not essential to success. And you can't work 12 hours a day every day. Can you? So, eventually you will be able to spend a little extra time with the pool.

    I think the pond will out gas and clear itself without adding more stuff to it. If anything I would drain it and refill it.

    +1 to only testing FC and CC during SLAM. Maybe check CYA every 4-6 days or so to make sure something isn't chewing on it.

    Pool looks good! Nice job!
    No, not every day. I'm just working 48 to 60 hours per week right now, and I am off today and tomorrow. And yes, I considered draining the little pond. However, it is kind of low on my list of priorities right now. I think I'll just leave it alone and see how it does.

    Question: After testing, currently I'm rinsing my test vials and stirrer with tap water and drying. Should I be using dish soap, or is just a rinse sufficient?
    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
    One skimmer, one main drain, two eyeball jets, and one return from the booster pump.
    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
    I work night shift (Pediatric RN) so most of my posts will be during the night.

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    Re: Major's first swimming pool, getting the chemistry right. (Hopefully)

    The higher FC results in a false high reading for PH.

    - - - Updated - - -

    a rinse with tap water, and paper towel dry-off should be fine
    14600 gal Intex 24' Round 52" deep AG Pool (Heavily Modified)
    200lb sand filter w/2 speed 1.5/0.5hp pump
    Stenner 45MHP10 Liquid Chlorine (well... bleach) Injector. Borates added.
    K-2006 test kit w/Speedstir
    Pool School - PoolMath - HIGHLY Recommended Test Kits

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