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Thread: New pool balancing

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    Join Date
    May 2014
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    New pool balancing

    I have friends and neighbors which just installed a new pool. Their pool is ~30k gal, SWCG, IGVL, cartridge filter. They are using a Maytronics robot cleaner. They have a water knife water feature.

    I inherited an existing pool ~3 years ago when we bought our home. I have been using the methods and suggestions from this forum during that time to manage my pool.

    In talking with my neighbors, they've explained that their pool installer told them they don't have to balance their pool. Just add salt when the reading on the control module (Hayward AquaPro) gets down below 3000ppm. I, being a nosy neighbor, tested their water. When I tested it, the pool had been open for a week. There was no Cl, no CYA, and CH and TA were essentially a match to the city water they used to fill, both low at TA of 35 and CH at 75. Their pH was 7.5 and salt was at 3100. I told them they had no Cl and that that is what sanitizes the pool. They are new pool owners and I was concerned that their installer had disappeared when he cashed their check. I even took a sample to the local pool store and had them test it, and there findings matched mine. I offered to help them balance their pool. They called the installer and he told them "I don't put any of that stuff in my pool. I've been doing pools for 25 years and all that stuff is just a waste of money. As long as you have salt and your pH is right you won't ever have any problems." My friends, who mind you have all of three weeks of experience with a pool, kind of looked at me like I was the idiot for "buying into pool balancing." Their response to no Cl which apparently was an issue of great enough significance to actually address was turning the SWCG up to 85%.

    My questions are: Are they right? Is all the other stuff a waste of time and money? Is their pool safe for my kids to swim in? What will happen with their pool?
    IGVL (Liner ~10 yrs old), 25,000 gal (18x36 ft, 8 ft deep end), 2 drains, 3 returns + Polaris return, 2 Hayward skimmers, AquaLogic Control Unit, T-15 Salt cell, Hayward Super Pump 1 hp, Polaris Pressure Cleaner (280) w/ Booster Pump, Hayward S244T Sand Filter, TFPC method with TF-100 Test Kit + Speedstir

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    Mod Squad woodyp's Avatar
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    Re: New pool balancing

    There was no Cl, no CYA, and CH and TA were essentially a match to the city water

    You answered your own question...........................85% may not fix an already nascent algae bloom, keep the FC too high and shorten the life of the SWG. Do them a favor and suggest this site to them.
    16x32x52" Steel Cornelius Miramar AGP Vinyl liner 13,100 gal. Buried 2 ft.
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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: New pool balancing

    I will say this firmly, not because I think you need to hear this, but for the newbies that may see this later:

    THAT POOL BUILDER IS AN IDIOT AND THE NEW OWNERS ARE FOOLS TO BELIEVE HIM! IF THEIR CHLORINE IS ZERO THEIR POOL IS NOT SAFE!


    Without CYA, the chlorine they produce will burn off faster, the cell will have to work harder to keep up production which shortens cell life, and unbuffered chlorine is very harsh on skin, hair, and swimsuits. I would not swim in unbuffered chlorine over 1ppm. Are they running the cell 24/7? That might keep the pH stable since the TA is so low, but they should check it daily. TA levels of 70-120 stabilize pH. Each pool has its own "sweet spot" in the 70-120 range that it likes and the pH will stay fairly stable. Pools with SWG tend to fight rising pH due to the nature of chlorine production. pH is an important value for vinyl liner pools. If it is too low over an extended period of time the sides will pucker and wrinkle like crazy. (personal experience)

    Since you have been a member since 2014 you probably know we don't advocate a lot of pool store chemicals either, however we do believe in keeping a pool balanced, clean, and safe. We do not advocate the use of phosphate removers, flocs, clarifiers, yellow out, green to clean, bagged "shock" or pucks to maintain pools. We do however advocate for the FC/CYA relationship FC/CYA Chart, muriatic acid instead of dry acid to lower TA and pH, washing soda or baking soda instead of soda ash to raise TA, and borax or aerating instead of pH up to raise pH. We also advocate the use of an FAS/DPD test kit to do your own testing instead of relying on the pool store (who uses it as a selling tool) or test strips which are unreliable and too general to provide any useful information.

    I would not let my child swim there knowing how they maintain their pool, or at least check the chlorine first and only let them swim if it is at 1ppm until you know they have changed their ways. If they are lucky, the pool will just turn green due to lack of chlorine. Worst case scenario someone gets sick from a water born pathogen. In the middle, they ruin their salt cell or their liner.

    Some people are weird about pool maintenance and take any differing advice as a criticisms of them personally. I hope this is not the case with you and your neighbor, but bottom line is your kids' safety.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: New pool balancing

    I've tried to reason with them, and although they are very good friends, they've been rather arrogant with me over the whole matter. I've resolved to just keep my opinions to myself. I anticipate they will learn the hard way. I have made my wife aware that I feel their pool is probably unsanitary even if it does appear clear-ish, and that she should approach taking the kids over there with caution. In two weeks of ownership, one of their kids has already had an ear infection, and I feel it is likely no Cl in the pool could have had something to do with that. I won't get into the other things I watched the pool installer do that led me to believe he was amateur grade. I hate it for my neighbors, as they spent a lot of money on the install, an excessive amount in my opinion, and I think the final product fell fairly short of their expectations. Further, I feel they're being misled on maintenance, and I wonder if their naivete isn't being preyed upon as a setup for more expense in the future.
    IGVL (Liner ~10 yrs old), 25,000 gal (18x36 ft, 8 ft deep end), 2 drains, 3 returns + Polaris return, 2 Hayward skimmers, AquaLogic Control Unit, T-15 Salt cell, Hayward Super Pump 1 hp, Polaris Pressure Cleaner (280) w/ Booster Pump, Hayward S244T Sand Filter, TFPC method with TF-100 Test Kit + Speedstir

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    Piolin's Avatar
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    Re: New pool balancing

    No way I will allow my kids, or family or myself in that pool


    8,400 gal 3K GPH pump, SWG CG-28669, TF100 test kit, speed stir, K-1766 Taylor salt test.

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: New pool balancing

    There pool will not last long with that kind of care (or lack of care)...........Keep your mouth shut and ears open for when they are ready to listen to you. They WILL have a green pool before too long AND their plaster is taking a beating with those numbers.

    Keep your kids out of that water if at all possible.......flush ears REAL good with alcohol if they do swim over there.

    Good luck and be ready when they are ready.

    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: New pool balancing

    Another suggestion - let your kids invite theirs to your house to swim. Perhaps they will notice the water quality and mention it at home.
    My Amazon Smile for November12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
    Our pool build--> Our Pool Solved Our Sloping Yard Skippy's Cheap Pool Cooler -->Skippy's New Fountain

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    Re: New pool balancing

    I wouldn't let you or your kid's swim at the neighbours, it's unsanitary. You have offered your help and it's hard not to do anything more without sounding like a preaching born again Christian, so try to bite your tongue so you can remain friends. They may be feeling a bit short changed by the pool builder too and may feel a little tense about being offered more advice on how they could do better. Just hope that they will come to you in the future when they notice how good your pool is and how you never stress over it.

    6000 gal, AG vinyl, Intex ultra frame 16ft, 1200 Gallon Sand Filter, DIY Solar, Clear Choice Labs Testing Kit

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