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Thread: Fighting constant high PH

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    dw9000's Avatar
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    Fighting constant high PH

    Seems like every 5-7 days my PH is going above 8.0,, the red is at or above the highest red mark on my TF-100 ph test tube.
    I add the appropriate amount of muratic acid (according to pool school),, check it the next day and its down around 7.2-7.4. I have 3 returns that I had pointed a bit high, and I adjusted those a few weeks ago so there is no more bubbling at the return outlet, just a bit of a swirl at the top of the water line.
    I do have an overpowered 1.5hp pump, that I was hoping to not have to replace. I might just have too much water going through the returns? If I lean up against the returns, its pretty powerful.

    I just checked my ph and its 8.0+ plus again. I can control my returns via jandy valve, should I turn them down or do you think something else is at issue here?

    My chlorine, cya and other readings are all within check,, just the PH keeps going up.
    In-ground block / vinyl liner 33' x 22' x 5',, approx 25k gals
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    Floor drains, 2 skimmers, 3 return lines (2" plumbing ultra-flex PVC)

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    What is your TA? High TA can push PH up.
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    dw9000's Avatar
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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Quote Originally Posted by pooldv View Post
    What is your TA? High TA can push PH up.
    TA looks good, I just tested it 90-100.
    In-ground block / vinyl liner 33' x 22' x 5',, approx 25k gals
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    Floor drains, 2 skimmers, 3 return lines (2" plumbing ultra-flex PVC)

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    That's too high then. Try dropping it to below 80ppm (maybe try 70ppm). Then, do a very careful experiment after you drop TA to 70ppm - drop the pH to 7.4 and then everyday measure the pH until it gets to 8.0. Let's see what your acid demand looks like after doing that.
    Matt
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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    That's too high then. Try dropping it to below 80ppm (maybe try 70ppm). Then, do a very careful experiment after you drop TA to 70ppm - drop the pH to 7.4 and then everyday measure the pH until it gets to 8.0. Let's see what your acid demand looks like after doing that.
    Ok, so according to pool school, the only way I see to drop TA is lowering PH to 7.0-7.2 using acid. Wait a day, recheck PH & TA then. Then aerate to get PH back up to 7.5 (or so). Is this what you are recommending I do?
    In-ground block / vinyl liner 33' x 22' x 5',, approx 25k gals
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    Floor drains, 2 skimmers, 3 return lines (2" plumbing ultra-flex PVC)

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Repeat that process until the TA is 70ppm. What are you using for aeration?
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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    No need to wait a day between dropping th pH and aerating. Drop the pH to 7.0-7.2 using Pool Math with your current TA value and then measure your new pH and TA after about an hour or so. Then aerate until the pH cones up to 7.6 and repeat the process. For most average sized pools, the addition of acid to drop the pH usually consumes about 10ppm TA. So you'll likely need a few acid/aeration cycles.
    Matt
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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    No need to wait a day between dropping th pH and aerating. Drop the pH to 7.0-7.2 using Pool Math with your current TA value and then measure your new pH and TA after about an hour or so. Then aerate until the pH cones up to 7.6 and repeat the process. For most average sized pools, the addition of acid to drop the pH usually consumes about 10ppm TA. So you'll likely need a few acid/aeration cycles.
    Ok, I'll give it a shot.
    I had planned on aerating with my return jets, pointing them upwards. Is there something else that would work?
    In-ground block / vinyl liner 33' x 22' x 5',, approx 25k gals
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    Floor drains, 2 skimmers, 3 return lines (2" plumbing ultra-flex PVC)

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Some people build fountains on one or more of their return jets. The other option you have is just give it time. Every time your pH naturally rises, hit it with acid to bring it down to 7.0-7.2. Then wait, when the pH naturally rises to 7.8, hit it again with acid. The TA will slowly come down to the point the pH will stabilize. My pool actually likes the TA down in the 50-60 range.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Quote Originally Posted by tim5055 View Post
    Some people build fountains on one or more of their return jets. The other option you have is just give it time. Every time your pH naturally rises, hit it with acid to bring it down to 7.0-7.2. Then wait, when the pH naturally rises to 7.8, hit it again with acid. The TA will slowly come down to the point the pH will stabilize. My pool actually likes the TA down in the 50-60 range.
    Tim,

    Sometimes waiting until you hit 7.8 before lowering again is counter-productive especially if the fill water has high TA and evaporation rates are high. The rise in pH is not linear between 7.2 and 7.8. It's very fast from 7.2 to about 7.5 (a few days) and then it begins to stall between 7.6 and 7.8 and come sometimes take a week or more to fully rise in that range particularly when yo start to reach your target TA value. So cycling the acid addition/aeration between 7.2 and 7.6 works a little faster and that is why I wrote it that way in my post.

    Matt
    Matt
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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    OK thanks both of you,, I don't think I've ever had the PH to 7.0, so I added a little more acid as it was only 7.2 a few minutes ago. I'll go out and check in 45 minutes and start aerating (assuming it hits 7.0). I'll check it later tonight, once it hits 7.8,, I'll add more acid,, and repeat until TA gets to 60 or so.
    In-ground block / vinyl liner 33' x 22' x 5',, approx 25k gals
    Cartridge Filter
    Floor drains, 2 skimmers, 3 return lines (2" plumbing ultra-flex PVC)

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Yes, you are just like many of us unfortunately. I have high TA/pH fill water and its just a battle we will have forever. It will slow much more once you use th advice given and get your pool TA down. TA 70 is my absolute high ceiling but my high Calcium level permits me to take mine even lower, which I try to do as a regular maintenance routine.
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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    I'm having the exact same problem right now in my hot tub. It's an acid eater.
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    dw9000's Avatar
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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Well I've tried the lower PH,, aerate,, add more PH,, aerate,, but my TA stays at about 100. I've been lowering the PH to about 7.0,, then aerate for about 6-8 hrs,, the PH gets up around 7.6 and I hit it with more muratic acid, taking it back down to 7.0,, then repeat the aerate. I've done this 3 times so far.
    I did add about 2 inches of water, so that might have disrupted things (increased TA with the new water?).
    In-ground block / vinyl liner 33' x 22' x 5',, approx 25k gals
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    Floor drains, 2 skimmers, 3 return lines (2" plumbing ultra-flex PVC)

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    TA looks good, I just tested it 90-100.
    My PH constantly drifted up and every 4 days I had to lower from 7.8 to around 7.4. The TA was at 130 (at it's peak). Even at 90, I had to lower the TA. Not until the TA reached 70, did the PH stabilize. My pool found the perfect combination. My pool had to do with rotating heads that break the surface water. I took advantage of all the snow and rain water this winter, which lowered my TA, etc.

    Good luck and keep us posted!
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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Test your fill water. Well water especially can have high TA (mine is 220.) That adds a bit of complexity to your process.
    16X32 AB, Pentair SD filter, 3/4hp Pentair Optiflo, CircuPool RJ30+ swg, TF 100

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    FInally,, tested TA this morning twice - down around 70ppm. PH at 7.2,, FC about 4,, I think my pool is as balanced as it's ever been and good thing its suppose to be 90+ and high humidity today and tomorrow.
    In-ground block / vinyl liner 33' x 22' x 5',, approx 25k gals
    Cartridge Filter
    Floor drains, 2 skimmers, 3 return lines (2" plumbing ultra-flex PVC)

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    Quote Originally Posted by dw9000 View Post
    FInally,, tested TA this morning twice - down around 70ppm. PH at 7.2,, FC about 4,, I think my pool is as balanced as it's ever been and good thing its suppose to be 90+ and high humidity today and tomorrow.
    Ok. Now try to test your pH daily or every other day. The point is to see how long it takes to get to a pH above 7.8. The initial rise from 7.2 to 7.5 will probably be quick (a few days). But the rise between 7.6 and 7.8 should be slower.
    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    I'm another person whose pool's pH is much more stable with a TA around 50 or 60. I also had to learn to not try to keep it at 7.5. It stays between 7.6 & 7.8 for a long time. I have high TA fill water so it's a constant battle during the summer here.
    John - 16,000 gallon | in ground | pebble | Triton II sand filter | TF100 | speedstir | Hayward Phoenix 2x

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    Re: Fighting constant high PH

    This takes a lot of time sometimes. It takes me at least a couple of weeks of frequent additions to get mine from 90s-100s down to 50-60 ranges.
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