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Thread: Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

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    Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

    Well gang, been an unregistered lurker here for about 2 months now, so I finally registered. Let me say that the advice here has been stellar. Been through pool school, etc.

    Here's the situation:
    My parents have had their pool for 22 years with honestly almost no problems. My mother took care of the pool using 3" tablets and bags of "shock" (cal-hypo) from Sam's Club, with just the simple chlorine and pH tester. She would have the pool water tested at the local Ace Hdwe only if something appeared to be "out" and she had not been able to "correct" on her own. The only big issue we had in all that time was one summer when she let the pH get WAY low. She didn't even use the tester because the water was so clear. However, it was eating my kids' skin! Eyes and everywhere the latex of the bathing suits touched were red and burning after swimming. Anyway, solved that problem.

    Fast-forward to end of last summer and all of this one. She looked at Sam's Club's "other" shock and it said 99% active ingredients. She thought that had to be better than the 53%, so she bought it. It was actually dichlor. The pool was cloudy upon opening. She took sample to Ace. After learning from your website, I'm really disappointed in them. First test shows CYA at almost 100 and very low FC. They had her add lots of "shock" (but did not ask her what kind she had/was using), so of course the CYA kept climbing. Pool still cloudy, getting algae, retested water - add more shock, etc. They kept manually putting in 99 for CYA value so the rest of the results would print out, and then finally let it run and it was well over 185, but don't know the real value.

    Then, we drained pool down to 4" from bottom in shallow end (now realize we should have drained more.) Next test showed CYA down to 84. We stopped using dichlor and bought bleach and some 73% cal-hypo and tried to SLAM the pool without a test kit based on the pool calculator and as much info as we had at that time. We were actually more successful than I thought, considering we probably didn't get it up high enough at first. Anyway, K1515 test kit came, and we got things under control. Pool looks clearer than it has in two years for sure. I just now got the CYA test things and it still looks like we're around 90.

    Here's what I've been seeing after dark:
    FC- 7 to 7.5
    CC - 0
    pH - 7.5
    TA - 120
    CYA - 90

    Here's my dilemma. Based on what I have read on here, I think my FC usage is pretty high considering how high my CYA is. Pool is full sun, pretty much all day, until about 7pm and some days does not get used. However, I have done the overnight test twice since the SLAM, and it loses about 0.5, so I don't think anything else is using it up, and CC is 0. Just can't believe we're losing that much FC to sun with the CYA that high. We are adding anywhere from 2.6 to 3.9 ppm each night (using Tandil bleach 8.25% from Aldi - either 2 or 3 half gallons). And I have spot-checked after adding bleach to make sure bleach was yielding expected results (not old, etc), but all 3 times it was right.
    Almost seems like no matter how much bleach I put in, FC is always back to 7 or 7.5, even if I add 4 half gallons. Highest it has been was 8.5 after 4 (which makes sense). I guess that's just how much I'm going to lose, but that's $4.50 a day, which sounds and feels like a lot, especially since before she was pretty much using 10 3" tablets a week, plus a bag of shock, which ended up about $15 - and I'm talking about 3 and 4 years ago when she was not having any pool problems. The only thing I can figure is that the CYA was so much lower then that the FC could be lower (but wouldn't you think that the consumption would be around the same or at least proportional?) I guess I just can't figure out how we never had problems for those other 20 years....maybe just lots of good luck!

    Anyway, any further thoughts on the FC usage for pool of this size in this area would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks again for all the help! You have been a God-send!
    Last edited by 92tiger; 08-26-2016 at 09:18 AM. Reason: add signature
    20x40 IG w/vinyl liner; 33k gallon; sand filter; ? pump; K1515 test kit with add ons to test CYA and strips just for fun

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    Re: Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

    After you get the pool under control and see just how clear a TFP is, you will probably change your mind on how well that pool was for those 22 years.

    "Clear" is not the same as TFP Clear!
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

    Welcome to TFP!

    2-4 ppm is the typical FC usage per day.
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    Re: Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

    It is under control and crystal clear now and beautiful, but I'm not joking when I tell you that it really was good 98% of the time for the first 20 years. We'd have friends and family all belly-aching about taking care of their pool, and ours was just not that much work. I guess it was just beginners luck. We've battled the beast this summer though.

    Absolutely no complaints about how it looks, it's just more expensive.

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    harleysilo's Avatar
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    Re: Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

    How expensive is water there? You can totally go back to pucks you just have to understand that when your CYA gets high you'll have to drain and replace water to lower it. At its core this site is about understanding your pools chemistry, and luckily its not that complicated.
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

    It would help us give you better advice if you can fill out your signature with your pool details.

    Having said that my suggestion at this point is to probably continue what you are doing using bleach for now since you are probably near the end of the swim season in NC (assuming you don't heat it all winter), and then get a good fresh start in the spring.

    Ike
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Re: Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

    Well, Isaac-1, I was so proud of myself because I always see you guys ask people to add signature, so I actually did this first. Somehow, it did not save....so goes my computer luck lately. So I have added it now.

    We are definitely near the end of the season - about 1 more month for us, so I am going to continue as-is for now.

    I understand that the CYA does not evaporate. Will it stay at same level over the winter? Didn't know if cold had an affect on it.

    Right now the plan is to close pool as recommended on this site, and then test upon opening in May, and then decide if we are going to do a 90% drain (or whatever we think it necessary) to get the CYA down to 30.

    I'm just wondering if once we do that, and say we're at 30 CYA, with FC goals between 3 and 7, will I still lose 3ppm per day? It sounds like it based on what I've read, but then as long as we monitor CYA, a portion of the FC can come from the pucks for a reduced price.

    And harleysilo, I agree that the pool chemistry is not that complicated now, however I think the industry does quite a dis-service by not teaching about the effects of CYA to the average pool owner since it is really driving the boat, when all is said and done. Once that relationship is understood, everything else falls into place.

    We found some beach at Ollie's that's 10% for $2.49/gallon last week after reading some other bleach threads and it has been performing as expected (3ppm FC per gallon in our pool) and we're hoping they will have it again next year. That's much better pricing than even the Aldi bleach. That would end up being about $18 bucks a week, so not too bad.

    Pooldv - it seems like that's what I've read pretty consistently. Just thought it would be on the lower side with such high CYA, but guess my pool size affects that as well.
    20x40 IG w/vinyl liner; 33k gallon; sand filter; ? pump; K1515 test kit with add ons to test CYA and strips just for fun

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

    Sometimes CYA is lost over the winter due to bacterial conversion, although it is not a predictable process, this is part of the reason I suggested waiting. Also you don't really need to get your CYA all the way down to 30 ppm, 40 would probably be about ideal for your climate, and even at 50-60 it is reasonably manageable if you stay on top of things. So all things considered if you stay away from stabilized chlorine you should be on target with typical partial winter drain down and refill for a more manageable CYA level.

    Ike

    p.s. pucks are fine for occasional use, vacations, etc. IF you manage your CYA rise. Note also CYA does break down over time, it just does so VERY slowly (a couple of percent per month on average), usually a low enough rate to be masked by splash out and natural rain water replacement
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
    ~Remember TFP counts on your donations to keep this site ad free~

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    Re: Strange Post - 22 yr pool owner with almost no problems previously

    Thanks Isaac-1. 40 to 60 will be my target for next season.

    I'll see where it is upon opening, and then may need some tfp assistance to decide how much water to drain off, depending on opening value.

    Many thanks!
    20x40 IG w/vinyl liner; 33k gallon; sand filter; ? pump; K1515 test kit with add ons to test CYA and strips just for fun

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