Hi there! I'm new, I've done a bit of reading in Pool School and around the forum, and I have a lot more to read-- but I'm in a bit of a pinch and I'm hoping to get some personalized advice before I'll have time to get through all of the educational stuff on this site (which I can't wait to read actually).
A little background-- we are new home/pool owners as of November last year. I being the newb that I so clearly am, went to Leslies and got a bunch of products and ended up with a lot of stuff and a hurt bank account. Since moving in, our pool has been in this kind of yo-yo diet situation of beautiful sparkly clear but can't quite get all the numbers right with testing, then a few days or weeks go by and suddenly, algae bloom. This was always following some jerk wind storm wherein many MANY leaves and extra debris got mixed into the pool and I wasn't able to get it all cleaned out before the damage was done. So I thought that was my problem. Turns out (I am now realizing, after months of research recently) that my issue isn't just wind storms, it's just that I can't seem to get the water right no matter what I do. Thankfully I have some much better ideas about how to correct my wrongs and go from here after reading up on this site, BUT, I'm going out of town for 4 days, starting Friday, and I JUST barely got enough bleach dumped into this thing to get the last horrid green out, so I'm hoping you all might have advice for what I can do to prepare my pool for being gone for 4 days before I get back (after which I fully intend to SLAM the pool as it apparently needs).
I finally got my Taylor complete high test kit and Aquachek7 strips in the mail today so I did some parallel testing between those two and a sample I got tested at Leslies (same day). Here are my results: (NOTE: Initial testing showed FC/TC =0, these results with a * show after I added 2lbs 53% Cal Hypo- which I wish I had done these tests before adding, so I could have used bleach instead since my CH is high it seems!)
Test Leslie's Pool Supply Taylor kit Aquachek 7 FC 0 4* 1-3* TC 0 4* 1-3* CH 260 340 250-500 CYA 200 >100 150-300 TA 120 110 80-120 pH 7.4 7.2-7.8 7.4
I am concerned about the discrepancy between CH testing methods, but since the kit only has enough for a limited amount I didn't retest yet. It is worth mentioning that while I am a total noob at pool testing, I definitely know how to titrate chemicals, so I don't think my technique was the issue.
ALSO important, I believe I have mustard algae, due to the description and frequency with which it keeps coming back even after appearing to go away for a short period of time! I fully intend to SLAM the pool and go up to 24 ppm chlorine after I am back from vacation, but given the time intensive process I can't make that happen before I leave. (Actually now that I read the chlorine/cya level chart, should I be SLAMing at 39ppm? this seems insane, I'm assuming I should first take care of the CYA level before trying to SLAM? Ugh, and to think I thought pool maintenance was all just brushing the walls and throwing some pucks in a floater once a week :facepalm:
RE: CYA levels-- I have already gone through three bags of BioActive, so I'm resigned to the partial draining technique as far as I know now-- ideas?
Any advice ya'll can offer me would be extremely helpful, but my main question is how can I make the least mess to clean up when I get back from vacation on Monday night?