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Thread: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

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    residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Hi everyone! Hope you all had a good off season!
    We had a lot of snow and ice here in NC and despite multiple adjustments of our pool cover we had thick layers of ice that pulled our pool cover down to the bottom of the pool and made it generally a mess. Next year I am going to look for that blow up pillow I have heard of to put under the cover. As of now our water is a lovely shade of green (above ground vinyl pool 15 foot that I we left half filled over the winter with a pool cover on). I had a few questions: should I completely drain the water and start from scratch or is it possible to salvage the water there and just add to it? Also, people have told me that the water will be fine once I shock it, but we use a SWG so I didn't want to use any store chlorine and just wanted to use the BBB method. Is that possible? Your feedback is greatly appreciated as always!

    Colleen
    4300 gallon above ground vinyl pool
    Separate SWG
    Standard filter/pump that comes with intex pool 15ftx4ft

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    If the pool is truly only 5300 gallons, and it's already half empty, I'd just empty it and start over. If it's a typo, then it may not be economically feasible to dump that much water and salt.

    Chemically, the Chlorine in store-bought liquid bleach is no different than the Chlorine generated by the SWG. The only byproduct will be salt - and you'll be adding salt anyway!

    My 2 cents.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    You can certainly use bleach or liquid chlorine to shock a pool that normally uses an SWG, in fact we recommend that because the SWG really can't raise FC fast enough to shock properly.
    pool-school/shocking_your_pool
    --paulr
    BBB "Intermediate Swimmer"
    IG plaster pool 18.5K gal, Hayward Pro-Grid DE filter, 3/4 HP Hydramax II; Polaris 380, 3/4 HP booster
    AG spa 325 gal, probably Sundance of some kind
    Water testing instructions on one page

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    ivyleager's Avatar
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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Howdy neighbor! Yes we had it hard in NC this year.

    I'm always one to recommend conserving water. So, that being said, just fill up as required and deal with green swamp once everything gets online (pump, filter, etc).

    Just to be clear: your quote of "so I didn't want to use any store chlorine and just wanted to use the BBB method." BBB = bleach, borax, baking soda, so not sure what you mean by store chlorine. That's bleach. Sodium hypochlorite.

    With SWGs, the way to shock is to use liquid chlorine (grocery store bleach, pool store 'liquid shock') so you save the life of your cell.

    Anyway, that's my recommendation.
    CaryB
    36 x 18 IG vinyl, 25K, 1 HP pump, sand filter
    1 skimmer, 2 returns, no main drain
    Old school: PoolSolutions test kit

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Since this is an Intex pool, with a standard Intex pool filter/pump, I would drain it - and then start over using these instructions:
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...ary_pool_guide

    and once things are balanced, turn on the SWG.

    Intex pumps and filters are woefully inadequate and you will have a very hard time trying to clear it up with that equipment.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Thanks for the advice! So just to clarify, my SWG won't initially produce enough chlorine to support swimming so I initially need to treat with bleach, borax, baking soda and cya (not dichlor) to make it "swimmable". Is that correct? I feel like I have so much to learn! This site is a lifesaver!!
    4300 gallon above ground vinyl pool
    Separate SWG
    Standard filter/pump that comes with intex pool 15ftx4ft

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Quote Originally Posted by uzenski@yahoo.com
    Thanks for the advice! So just to clarify, my SWG won't initially produce enough chlorine to support swimming so I initially need to treat with bleach, borax, baking soda and cya (not dichlor) to make it "swimmable". Is that correct? I feel like I have so much to learn! This site is a lifesaver!!
    Maybe. It depends on your test readings. In California, I doubt if anyone ever has to worry about getting TA up!

    Get a test kit ASAP, if you don't already have one. Read up in Pool School. Test the water, plug the numbers into the pool calculator, and add only what it says.

    Don't get the water tested at the pool store - they're much better at sales than at testing. You'll end up frustrated and broke.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Quote Originally Posted by uzenski@yahoo.com
    Thanks for the advice! So just to clarify, my SWG won't initially produce enough chlorine to support swimming so I initially need to treat with bleach, borax, baking soda and cya (not dichlor) to make it "swimmable". Is that correct? I feel like I have so much to learn! This site is a lifesaver!!
    Yes... when you drain and refill, use the instructions in the article I linked to to bring your water into balance, and then you can turn the SWG on.

    Adjust the PH/TA as needed; use the pool calculator to help you figure what, if any chem is needed to bring these into range. Water Balance for SWCGs

    Yes, use Dichlor to chlorinate at the same time as raising your CYA level. Alternatively, you can purchase CYA separately - HTH brand at Walmart is a good one. Use the sock method to add it, if you go that route - and then you won't need Dichlor.

    And lastly don't forget your salt.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    So I drained it most of way, got out what I could and refilled. I am now working on balancing things. I'm shocking with bleach and have hung the sock with cya in it (initial level zero of course). I have my TF 100 test kit that I am using to test so I think I'm heading in the right direction. My ph was too high (8.2, my own fault, added too much borax), so I went to find muriatic acid but could not find any in the nearby stores. I bought some stuff called ph down at walmart. The main ingredient is sodium bisulfate. Is that an acceptable substitute for muriatic acid? Thanks as always
    4300 gallon above ground vinyl pool
    Separate SWG
    Standard filter/pump that comes with intex pool 15ftx4ft

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    The main ingredient is sodium bisulfate. Is that an acceptable substitute for muriatic acid?
    It's fine. I have never used it and find muriatic to be very convenient. Others prefer the pH down.

    pH Down is perhaps a little costlier but it will do the trick.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Great. Also, my TA was low (30) but I figured I should fix the ph first, is that correct?
    4300 gallon above ground vinyl pool
    Separate SWG
    Standard filter/pump that comes with intex pool 15ftx4ft

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Well, Yikes!!!

    I hope there's a testing error in one of those two. Why don't you confirm pH before you lower it. The pH down will also lower your TA and it's too low now. Run the tests again, post back and confirm you had 8.2ph and 30TA

    It's easy to fix but that's a puzzling combination.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Well I'm about to pull my hair out. My TA is now 20 and my ph dropped to less than 6.8 after I added the ph down. Where to begin? Help!
    4300 gallon above ground vinyl pool
    Separate SWG
    Standard filter/pump that comes with intex pool 15ftx4ft

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Do not be in a rush to make your adjustments. You must test carefully and dose carefully or this stuff will not make sense to you.

    If you have it, please add 3 lbs of 20 Mule team Borax to your pool (pump running) and let it circulate for an hour. If you do not have any, go to the grocery store and get some in the laundry detergent section.

    After allowing it to circulate and mis for an hour, please post back your results for TA and pH.

    Please do not add that much Borax.....I think I made an error ....see PaulR's 2nd post below!
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    I'd like to double-check your 5300 gallons. That would be a 15' round, with a 4' water depth. Note that is actual water depth, not the wall height measured from outside. If the actual water depth is more like 3'8", then your volume is about 10% smaller than you think. And if your volume is less than you thought, you'd automatically be overdosing.
    --paulr
    BBB "Intermediate Swimmer"
    IG plaster pool 18.5K gal, Hayward Pro-Grid DE filter, 3/4 HP Hydramax II; Polaris 380, 3/4 HP booster
    AG spa 325 gal, probably Sundance of some kind
    Water testing instructions on one page

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Do you know how I can lower my TA. My pool is 20x40 with 10.5 ft deep end. My TA is 220. I lowered my ph and did the aeration for past 24 hours. Seemed to have lost my chlorine (I have SWG) and TA only decreased by 10. My swg is at 2800. If I up the salt with the TA lower? I am really confused. Added well water to top off pool 4 days ago and water turned green. My chlorine and ph were good so I added GLB Cell Saver and iron has been falling out. Water looks great today - clear - not green but chlorine down to .5 and ph at 7.6. Should I test CYA does that affect TA? Pool company put 1/2 cannister in on Thurs. I need some help.

    Thanks,
    Itisi

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Yikes, I had the borax on hand so I added it. Oh well, I'm sure we can fix it. What next?
    4300 gallon above ground vinyl pool
    Separate SWG
    Standard filter/pump that comes with intex pool 15ftx4ft

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Well, I used the Pool Calculator and got an answer of about 1 lb... too late now. After the borax has had an hour or so to mix in, test pH/TA again and we'll go from there.

    Also double-check your water depth so we can be sure of the volume we're working with.

    I'll check back in a little while.
    --paulr
    BBB "Intermediate Swimmer"
    IG plaster pool 18.5K gal, Hayward Pro-Grid DE filter, 3/4 HP Hydramax II; Polaris 380, 3/4 HP booster
    AG spa 325 gal, probably Sundance of some kind
    Water testing instructions on one page

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    Ok my ph is 8.2 again and my TA is 60 ( I added baking soda earlier), so what do you recommend next? Water depth is actually 39" (keep it lower for my younger children). Thanks so much for your help
    4300 gallon above ground vinyl pool
    Separate SWG
    Standard filter/pump that comes with intex pool 15ftx4ft

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    Re: residual pool water a mess after hard winter

    At 39" you actually have 4300 gallons. This is almost 20% less than your sig says, which makes a big difference in adding chems!

    Good work on the baking soda. Could you say how much total borax you've put in? You probably have 10-20 ppm borates by now, which makes some difference in pH calculations.

    I used the Pool Calculator and plugged in 4300 gallons, TA 60, and borates 15; it says lowering pH from 8.2 to 7.5 will take 1 lb (1.5 cups) of dry acid (aka pH Down). Add half that much. We don't need any more wild swings in this pool! Hopefully that will budge the pH down below 8.0, and we can fine-tune from there. Use the calculator yourself to see what I'm talking about.
    --paulr
    BBB "Intermediate Swimmer"
    IG plaster pool 18.5K gal, Hayward Pro-Grid DE filter, 3/4 HP Hydramax II; Polaris 380, 3/4 HP booster
    AG spa 325 gal, probably Sundance of some kind
    Water testing instructions on one page

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