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Thread: Thinking we have an Algae issue

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    Thinking we have an Algae issue

    First post so go easy on me! Been reading a lot on this site and would appreciate some input from the experts before I proceed much further. It's been quite the year for our pool. This is our third season. We purchased our pool used, tore it down, moved it 200 miles and re-errected at our place. We put a brand new liner in 3 years ago. New sand filter and sand at that point also. The first 2 years the pool was clear and great. We've have a pool place at the end of our road that really seems to know what is going on.

    This year though has been different. From when we opened the pool around Memorial day until about the end of June, the water was perfect. Then we started to loose water faster than what we could put in with our hose. We are on well water, but are running softened water into the pool. We also have an iron filter on our water supply. So no water is pretty good going into the pool. Any how, we found the skimmer housing was cracked, we we replaced that. Also found 4 holes in the liner (1 found by me and 3 found by a leak detector company). The holes we think came from our brush. It came with the pool and the edges had been modified and were sharp for some reason. So we think the pool is holding water like it should now but hard to tell since we have been backwashing alot. But the water has been very cloudy and green since the beginning of July. The pool people at the end our our road told us to hit it hard with liquid chlorine at once. Which after reading the SLAM article, it sounds very similar to what we did. Though we didn't maintain it like the article speaks of. Or test to see if we got to the proper FC level. The water did turn more bluish, but never got clear. We've just been using just test strips to check the pool balance, so never could confirm what the actual FC was after we dumped all this liquid shock in. Since July, we've been to the pool place dozens of times. Most of the time they say the pool is balanced, keep the FC high and backwash. Last time there they mentioned that we might have a phosphate issue and when was the last time we changed the sand.

    Probably 2 weeks ago, we noticed when we back washed that the sight glass showed the water being the color of milk. The pool place said it was dead algae and keep doing what we have been doing and when was the last time the sand was changed? Reading the article on this site about deep cleaning the sand, I did that this past weekend. Man you should have seen the white water come out of the filter for at least an hour. Back washed after that and the site glass became clear (well cloudy since that is what our water is in the pool.)

    Our T-100 kit showed up this week and have tested the last 2 days.

    Here are last nights test taken about 10:20

    FC = 5 ppm
    CC = 1 ppm
    TC = 6 ppm
    CH = 250 ppm
    TA = 110 ppm
    CYA = 45
    PH = 7.8 - 7.9

    I retested the FC, CC, and TC this morning to see if algae were gone using the OCLT test. All numbers were the same as last night. Which I would have thought if we had an algae issue that the FC would have dropped.

    The previous day's number were all the same, but FC was at 9, CC still at 1 and TC = 10. We did get a lot of rain yesterday do thinking that's why the FC number dropped.

    I guess my plan is today to get the PH down to 7.2-7.4 then SLAM it with the proper amount of bleach, brush and maintain. And hope that takes care of things. Hopefully we can get the PH down today to start the SLAM either tonight or 1st thing tomorrow morning. My wife is at home during the day so can keep an eye on the FC level and add more bleach if need be. The problem is we will be away from home from Friday evening until Sunday evening. Would it be better to wait until we are back home to start the SLAM?

    Any other suggestions? HELP!

    Thanks,
    Greg
    Ester Williams above ground 15' x 30' Oval with vinyl liner, T-100 Test Kit. Hayward Pro Series Model S180T (150# sand Filter), Pentair Dynamo 1 HP Pump, Central Ohio

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    Hello Greg and welcome to TFP! Yes - SLAM. Raise FC to "20" based on a CYA of 50 and don't stop or let the FC drop until you pass ALL 3 SLAM criteria. Let us know if you have any questions. Nice to have you with us.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    A quick follow up after the wife took the water sample to the pool people today. They are now claiming we have metals in the water, not algae. We're supposed to remove all chlorine and treat the metals, then shock the heck out of it. I haven't read much on metals. Just not sure how those are getting into our pool. As previously stated, when we top off the pool, we are using well water that has been passed through a residential iron filter and softener and also an iron filter that is screwed onto the end of the hose.

    The pool people tested for iron (somehow) on Sunday and said there was none. 4 days later we have it? My wife wants to follow the pool place's direction. Their direction has led us to 7 weeks of having a very cloudy pool.

    Thoughts?
    Ester Williams above ground 15' x 30' Oval with vinyl liner, T-100 Test Kit. Hayward Pro Series Model S180T (150# sand Filter), Pentair Dynamo 1 HP Pump, Central Ohio

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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    I would not listen to them at this point. You would still need to SLAM before addressing any metal in the water.
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  5. Back To Top    #5

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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    Thanks! That's what I'm going to do. Drop the ph and then SLAM. How long does it take to drop the PH usually (7.8 to 7.3ish)?
    Ester Williams above ground 15' x 30' Oval with vinyl liner, T-100 Test Kit. Hayward Pro Series Model S180T (150# sand Filter), Pentair Dynamo 1 HP Pump, Central Ohio

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    Use the Poolmath calculator to determine the correct amount, but once the muriatic acid is added, let it mix for about 30 minutes on high and check again.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    Just an update. Began SLAM 11 days ago. We've added almost 15 gallons of bleach throughout this process. We have been pretty good about testing and re upping the FC to SLAM levels. Yes' it has dropped below 20 a couple times but the longest we have been between tests has been 5 hours. The pool is blue, but still very very cloudy. We can barely see the 3rd step of the ladder. We have been very good about brushing at least once a day and are still swimming in the pool. Overnight tests have been showing less than a 2 FC drop, most of the time 1ppm drop. We obviously haven't met the 3 criteria yet for a SLAM to be completed so will keep maintaining.

    We can't see the bottom so haven't swept the pool at all. We've backwashed every couple days. Lots of milky white water.

    We haven't tested any other parameters with the water except on occasion tested the CC and it takes at the most 1 drop.

    Is there something else we are missing here? Will the pool become clear?

    Thanks for the help!
    Ester Williams above ground 15' x 30' Oval with vinyl liner, T-100 Test Kit. Hayward Pro Series Model S180T (150# sand Filter), Pentair Dynamo 1 HP Pump, Central Ohio

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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    Are you backwashing on a schedule or when the gauge indicates a 25% rise? If you have lots of milky white water when you do backwash, that does indicate your filter is doing its job. It will work better if it is a little dirty so don't backwash until the pressure goes up.

    When you say you haven't "swept" your pool what do you mean?
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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    Now is the time where patience and attention to detail come into play. Definitely keep brushing the entire pool to ensure any algae actively growing/attached is broken-up so that the bleach can penetrate the spores. Testing FC is really the most important right now. But you may want to test CYA one more time to ensure you're matching the correct SLAM FC level to that CYA just to be safe. Also make sure to look anywhere there could be a hiding place for algae. The two most common are behind any light fixtures that have a niche/cavity, and also inside ladders/steps that are submerged. Those are favorite hiding paces for algae.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    By swept, I mean vacuum the pool, to get the dead algae and debris off the floor of the pool. Though as much as we have swam in it, hopefully that stuff is suspended and is getting into the filter.

    We haven't been on a schedule for backwashing. And I haven't been watching the gauge either. We usually backwash when the return jet seems to diminish some pressure.

    We don't have many places for the algae to hid. And have been hitting those with our hands. Skimmer area, return jet and ladder area. Ladder has lots of crevices. I might just remove the ladder altogether and it it with the pressure washer.

    I'll retest CYA tonight and make sure we are at the proper SLAM FC.

    It's probably a good idea to leave the solar cover off with these high FC's right? Evenings are getting chilling and loosing some heat in the pool.
    Ester Williams above ground 15' x 30' Oval with vinyl liner, T-100 Test Kit. Hayward Pro Series Model S180T (150# sand Filter), Pentair Dynamo 1 HP Pump, Central Ohio

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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    Got home and rechecked CYA. At the initial start of SLAM we were at a CYA of 50. So the SLAM level we have been trying to maintain is 20. Checked it tonight and the CYA is now 30. We've had several inches of rain and have had to top off pool with hose and lots of evaporation during the days so I could see the CYA dropping, just didn't expect it that much. My wife did the CYA test too and also got 30. So I guess we can drop the FC down to 12 and proceed from there. Going to save us lots of chlorine.

    Is 30 CYA bad? My T-100 kit says 40-50 is ideal for a manually chlorinated pool.
    Ester Williams above ground 15' x 30' Oval with vinyl liner, T-100 Test Kit. Hayward Pro Series Model S180T (150# sand Filter), Pentair Dynamo 1 HP Pump, Central Ohio

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    Depends on your location, you can add it over there <---- so we can better advise. 30 is ok for northern locations. And it is fine for SLAMing.
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    Re: Thinking we have an Algae issue

    I'm in central Ohio.

    Ester Williams above ground 15' x 30' Oval with vinyl liner, T-100 Test Kit. Hayward Pro Series Model S180T (150# sand Filter), Pentair Dynamo 1 HP Pump, Central Ohio

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