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Thread: Higher FC levels than recommended?

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    Higher FC levels than recommended?

    I've got a SWG pool and been having problems with a bit of algae creeping back in when FC levels fall to "recommended" levels. Even though I've got a SWG pool, any harm at running at slightly higher "bleach" levels? That would mean more like FC of 6-7 rather than 5-6.

    - Jeff
    15,000 gal SWG pool, cartridge filter, all pentair equipment, variable speed pump, 400K BTU heater and spa, pebbletec finished

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Higher FC levels than recommended?

    There isn't any harm in doing that. However, what that means is that you are not killing the algae. You should shock the pool properly and really get rid of the algae and then you won't get algae at the normal FC levels.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Higher FC levels than recommended?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    There isn't any harm in doing that. However, what that means is that you are not killing the algae. You should shock the pool properly and really get rid of the algae and then you won't get algae at the normal FC levels.
    You've probably seen my other post about algae coming back. I'm really trying to understand what I didn't follow with the last time I shocked. I had very high sustained FC levels, brushed, pool looked great, was that way for 2-3 weeks before it started getting really hot, FC never dropped below 5 as best as I can tell -- I test in the morning, before the sun really hits and before the SWG kicks in. And still...

    So I'm trying to debug what is going on here. There are various charts too linked around to recommended levels -- some say 7 for CYA of 80 is fine, others lower.

    -- Jeff
    15,000 gal SWG pool, cartridge filter, all pentair equipment, variable speed pump, 400K BTU heater and spa, pebbletec finished

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Higher FC levels than recommended?

    As I said, FC at 7 is fine. It isn't required if you are doing everything correctly, and it ends up costing a little more, but if it works for you fine.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Higher FC levels than recommended?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    As I said, FC at 7 is fine. It isn't required if you are doing everything correctly, and it ends up costing a little more, but if it works for you fine.
    Sure, I get that. I agree I shouldn't need it -- which is why I'm trying to debug why I've been unable to 100% lick my algae issues, when they appear to go away for weeks and then return all of a sudden . I'd really rather understand with regard to shocking and algae what I'm doing wrong!

    Thanks for the help!

    - jeff
    15,000 gal SWG pool, cartridge filter, all pentair equipment, variable speed pump, 400K BTU heater and spa, pebbletec finished

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: Higher FC levels than recommended?

    Hi, Jeff,

    I can't help you debug the issue but I can tell you the cure.....chlorine. If you have algae, you don't have enough chlorine.

    While it's not that simple, it's a great rule to follow to keep a crystal clear pool. So whatever you're doing now and still getting algae......add more chlorine to the pool and keep more chlorine in the pool.

    Whenever I get algae, (I am presently cleaning up a nice little bloom of mustard algae) it's ALWAYS because, at some point, I haven't maintained enough chlorine in the pool.

    It helps to clean up all the nooks and crannies and clean the ladders, under the steps, etc. but it always is lack of chlorine in some way or another.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Higher FC levels than recommended?

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh
    Hi, Jeff,

    I can't help you debug the issue but I can tell you the cure.....chlorine. If you have algae, you don't have enough chlorine.

    While it's not that simple, it's a great rule to follow to keep a crystal clear pool. So whatever you're doing now and still getting algae......add more chlorine to the pool and keep more chlorine in the pool.

    Whenever I get algae, (I am presently cleaning up a nice little bloom of mustard algae) it's ALWAYS because, at some point, I haven't maintained enough chlorine in the pool.

    It helps to clean up all the nooks and crannies and clean the ladders, under the steps, etc. but it always is lack of chlorine in some way or another.
    Thanks for the encouragement! I agree -- not enough FC or letting latent algae get out of control. Trying to understand recommended FC levels against what seems to work in my pool which is +1 or +2 ppm from the tables and trying to see if for my pool that is "normal" or if I really have an issue going that I'm not addressing.

    I don't have ladders, but I do have a rough pebbletec finish and a bunch of steps and stuff.

    Going to keep at it, but please keep the ideas / suggestions on how to debug this coming!

    - jeff
    15,000 gal SWG pool, cartridge filter, all pentair equipment, variable speed pump, 400K BTU heater and spa, pebbletec finished

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    esim13's Avatar
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    Re: Higher FC levels than recommended?

    Sounds like you're just one step ahead of the algae. I was like that a while back. I was running my levels closer to the minimum range per day. I never went below the min so I thought I was good. I was testing daily and realized that I kept having to add lots of chlorine at the end of the day. I thought I was doing something wrong and then with the help of others here I realized that minimum for me needed to be more than 4ppm. I wasn't doing anything wrong to warrant this but my set up was the reason for the increase. I am in full sun all day. I'm in a fairly new subdivision with absolutely no trees. So sun from sun up to sun down - eating away at my chlorine. My pool looked pretty clear and sparkly, so I thought. Once I up'd the daily chlorine level to 7ppm - a ha! - it's really sparkly now! Now I can go 2 days and only have a drop of 2 to 3 ppm, that is going from 7ppm to 4 or 5 by days end of the second day. I have no problems now and I'm not a step ahead of the algae - I'm leaps ahead! Hope this helps!
    10,408 gallon, 21' round, 52 in' deep AG, half in ground
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    Re: Higher FC levels than recommended?

    Quote Originally Posted by esim13
    Sounds like you're just one step ahead of the algae. I was like that a while back. I was running my levels closer to the minimum range per day. I never went below the min so I thought I was good. I was testing daily and realized that I kept having to add lots of chlorine at the end of the day. I thought I was doing something wrong and then with the help of others here I realized that minimum for me needed to be more than 4ppm. I wasn't doing anything wrong to warrant this but my set up was the reason for the increase. I am in full sun all day. I'm in a fairly new subdivision with absolutely no trees. So sun from sun up to sun down - eating away at my chlorine. My pool looked pretty clear and sparkly, so I thought. Once I up'd the daily chlorine level to 7ppm - a ha! - it's really sparkly now! Now I can go 2 days and only have a drop of 2 to 3 ppm, that is going from 7ppm to 4 or 5 by days end of the second day. I have no problems now and I'm not a step ahead of the algae - I'm leaps ahead! Hope this helps!
    Sounds like me! I had the pool at 35 ppm to shock it at opening (overshot a bit). It took like 2 weeks to drop into the 9ppm range, then I switched my SWG back on and hovered around 5.5, that is when I got into trouble. I keep hearing that maybe I didn't finish the shock the first time, but I have a hard time believing that, but I'm trying the shock route once again to be sure, then will probably settle at 6-7 rather than 5-6. Plus, I can sometimes get a really hot day and 12 kids in my pool on short notice, so I'm sure I need a bit more FC on those days.

    - Jeff
    15,000 gal SWG pool, cartridge filter, all pentair equipment, variable speed pump, 400K BTU heater and spa, pebbletec finished

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