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Thread: Really high cya

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    Really high cya

    We recently purchased a home with a pool and I'm doing my best to manage the chemistry myself. To that end I bought a Lamotte Pro 7 2056 test kit to help manage the levels. I was really shocked to learn that my cya levels are way off the charts, the Lamotte kit puts it at 120, I took it to Leslie's for testing as well and the guy there put it at about 110.

    My understanding is that cya is not a natural occurrence and is an additive in chlorine tablets.....except I have a saltwater pool so nobody should have been using those tablets right? The only chemicals I have put into the pool are two bottles of chlorine (one to shock and another to keep the levels up while my pump was broken and awaiting repair) and some muriatic acid just yesterday. How could these the level get so high? The previous owner has it professionally managed so hard to believe they would have pumped it up that high.

    The guy at big L though it was not a problem really and his advice was to just wait till winter, drain it a bit and let it refill with rain water and measure again next summer.....but he also looked like he was 19 and I seriously doubt he has much real world experience with pool care and such so here I am asking for advice.

    Overall my pool is so/so shape right now
    - fcl is a bit low (2.76) -- just bumped up my swg time today and will remeasure throughout the week
    - alk is high (149) -- was much higher yesterday, will continue to adjust with muriatic acid throughout the week
    - ph is fine at 7.6
    - ch is also really high (639). We have naturally very hard water around here, not sure what i can do about this


    Advice? Do nothing / it's not a problem, wait till winter, drain immediately?

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    Kiss4aFrog's Avatar
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    Re: Really high cya

    Since you recently purchased it have you previousely tested the CYA or is the first reading ??

    If this is the first time you've tested it you can almost guarantee it was the person or persons who "professionally managed" it. Some persons calling themselves professionals just love to use pucks and don't really care as long as the pool looks ok. They are just pool stores that do house calls

    Sounds like it's time to dump a little water. I would try to get it down a little closer to 80 so you can get the SWCG set where you need it.
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    mickey4paws's Avatar
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    Re: Really high cya

    Hi, welcome!
    You can maintain your pool yourself pretty easily once you learn the methods taught here. I am no expert but just wanted to welcome you. I am not familiar with the Lamotte test kit (I use the TFT kit which most people use here). If your CYA is really that high, you'll need to drain some water and refill to get the level down to a more manageable level. Also, for your CYA, your chlorine is way too low and turning up your SWG won't get you where you need to be quickly. You can use liquid chlorine or household bleach to bring it up. SWG's are great at maintaining your chlorine but if you need to be much higher, you'll need to supplement with the liquid, plus it puts a lot less strain on your salt cell.

    I would recommend going to pool school and reading as much as you can. The links are on the home page of the site or try this: Pool School - Pool School Also, you may want to look at this handy chart: Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Really high cya

    The maintenance co was probably adding powdered dichlor shock weekly. It would be best to do a partial drain to lower CYA down to 80 to make it more manageable. FC/CYA Chart

    To manage a pool with high CH you need to manage the CSI. PoolMath will give you the number after you enter you test results. Keep CSI between -0.3 and 0 to avoid scale. Pool School - Calcium Scaling

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    Re: Really high cya

    With CYA of 110, you need to maintain a minimum FC of at least 8 and should target 12, or I see algae in your future.
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    Re: Really high cya

    I've got a salt water pool and manage high CH levels (currently 1200ppm). It's a pain in the butt - but it can be done. Keep your PH lower - 7.2 ish - and you'll be a happier pool owner.

    You can easily wait till winter to drain/fill with cleaner water - but you need to keep that FC level much higher as previously mentioned.

    It's also worth monitoring your fill water's CH level over the year. I find we have much harder water in the summer - so it's sometimes worth waiting to drain/fill just for that reason.
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    needsajet's Avatar
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    Re: Really high cya

    Quote Originally Posted by jeffchap View Post
    With CYA of 110, you need to maintain a minimum FC of at least 8 and should target 12, or I see algae in your future.
    +1 Do this part right away while you think about it

    You're going to need a FAS-DPD chlorine test regardless of which CYA approach you decide to follow: TFTestkits.net

    Or you can order a recommended test kit which includes the FAS-DPD test: Pool School - Test Kits Compared

    The most frequently recommended kit is this one: TFTestkits.net
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    Re: Really high cya

    sounds like the consensus is partial drain and refill to lower cya, and also bring my FC way up sooner rather than later.

    I'll do my research on managing the high ch levels as well.

    Thank you all for the advice!

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Really high cya

    I would test your fill water and write down the results for future reference. That will tell you what you are dealing with when you go to drain and refill.

    Good job on taking care of your own pool! You will LOVE IT as will your wallet!

    I have some links for new pool owners I have set up. It is a lot of info but it will all start to make sense when you start using it.

    Print these out:
    Pool School - Basic Pool Care Schedule

    Pool School - Recommended Levels

    Bookmark these:
    Pool School - Recommended Pool Chemicals

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/calc.html

    Pool School - ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

    Make sure to ask any and all questions you might have no matter how small! We have all been where you are at one point.

    It is my hope this will give you a working base line for your pool

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    Re: Really high cya

    The other way that your CYA would have got so high is that someone just added too much CYA as they miscalculated or they added it every year whether they needed it or not. With a SWCG you should have CYA of 70-80 as per this reference: Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart
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