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Thread: Updated predicament: High TA, Very High FC, good pH

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    Updated predicament: High TA, Very High FC, good pH

    Hello all,

    I have been converting to the BBB method over the past week or so and I am facing an issues of low pH and no TA. I am hoping to gain some insight and advice from this post. I am using the TF-100 Test Kit purchased through this site. It is worth noting that I am now using an inline chlorinator with 3" 99% Trichloro-S-Triazinetrione 7oz slow dissolving tabs (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...d=242927372024). Two days ago I put two boxes of Borax (each 4 hours apart) into the skimmer and tested the water yesterday morning with no change in pH. Thus, yesterday I dumped two more boxes into the skimmer. Is this too little or am I missing an essential step? I have also been running my pump on the high setting for about a week now to allow for maximum filtration and circulation. I should also note that the water looks great, I am just trying to get the chemicals where they are needed. We go into this pool frequently with our 8 month old son....almost daily.

    Pool Temp: 80 F
    FC: 3 (FAS/DPD 3) (OTO 5)
    CC: 0
    pH: ? (after 5 drops of red phenol it is a very light yellow hue)
    TA: 0 (TFT step 1: never goes green, starts off pink; thus, no need to add drops to change to pink, I.e. no pH?)
    CH: 250 (between 250-270)
    CYA: 55

    Thank you in advance for your advice!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: New member: No pH no CC: Advice?

    Welcome to TFP ...with CYA at 55 you want your FC to never drop below 4-5ppm and your target FC is 6-7ppm.

    Now on to your main issue, you are describing the TA test and your alkalinity appears to be zero...your PH is tested by using the phenol red r-0014 in the K-1000 comparator, included with the tf100. (where you compare shades of red)

    You most likely bumped you PH too high, but not sure how big your pool is?

    To adjust TA up, you need plain old baking soda...walmart sells 12lb bags for around $7

    Hope this helps
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

    Pool School, TFTestKits, Pool Calculator

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    Re: New member: No pH no CC: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by dmanb2b
    Welcome to TFP ...with CYA at 55 you want your FC to never drop below 4-5ppm and your target FC is 6-7ppm.

    Now on to your main issue, you are describing the TA test and your alkalinity appears to be zero...your PH is tested by using the phenol red r-0014 in the K-1000 comparator, included with the tf100. (where you compare shades of red)

    You most likely bumped you PH too high, but not sure how big your pool is?

    To adjust TA up, you need plain old baking soda...walmart sells 12lb bags for around $7

    Hope this helps
    With regards to this post, my apologies, I have edited my post to correct it. That was the Total Alkalinity test I was mentioning, it was also a 0 just as the pH test was.
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    Re: New member: No pH no CC: Advice?

    not a problem...can you describe how you are testing PH? What color is your water after you add 5 drops of r-0014?

    A ph of zero would melt your clothes off, so I'm just doubting the result. The TF100 can only accurately measure PH of 6.8 - 8.2...anything outside of that range would be a pure guess
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

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    Re: New member: No pH no CC: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by dmanb2b
    not a problem...can you describe how you are testing PH? What color is your water after you add 5 drops of r-0014?

    A ph of zero would melt your clothes off, so I'm just doubting the result. The TF100 can only accurately measure PH of 6.8 - 8.2...anything outside of that range would be a pure guess

    after 5 drops of red phenol it is a very light yellow hue....I have re-edited post above with Calcium test results as well. Attached is a photo of the pH test results for your review. Thanks!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    Re: New member: No pH no CC: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by dmanb2b
    not a problem...can you describe how you are testing PH? What color is your water after you add 5 drops of r-0014?

    A ph of zero would melt your clothes off, so I'm just doubting the result. The TF100 can only accurately measure PH of 6.8 - 8.2...anything outside of that range would be a pure guess

    lol I say "0" because it is not on the chart, but that is obviously an exaggeration on my part, sorry.

    One more question, how do I raise my TA and is that a problem that it is zero?

    BTW, the chlorine side of the test in the picture is just water...I already did it with the TF-100....I was just getting an updated pH is all.
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: New member: No pH no CC: Advice?

    If the TA test turns immediately red, it means pH is less than 4.5 (that's the pH at which the indicator turns red). Your pH test would be pale yellow with that number. You need to get that pH up ASAP! You can continue using borax to do so, but if you can get soda ash (Arm & Hammer washing soda), it will work faster.
    11,200 gal, Pebble-Tec; Tristar 2-speed 1hp - Swimclear 325 ft2 cart - SWG - A & A in-floor cleaner - Heat pump. For the poolside cooking, a Yoder Wichita and a Big Steel Keg!
    TF Test Kits -- PoolMath -- Pool School
    Make each day your masterpiece. - John Wooden

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    Anything you add to raise your pH will also raise TA, so you'll be tackling both at once by adding soda ash.
    11,200 gal, Pebble-Tec; Tristar 2-speed 1hp - Swimclear 325 ft2 cart - SWG - A & A in-floor cleaner - Heat pump. For the poolside cooking, a Yoder Wichita and a Big Steel Keg!
    TF Test Kits -- PoolMath -- Pool School
    Make each day your masterpiece. - John Wooden

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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    WOW...OK...just saw the pic of the comparator...if that is the shade you are getting with 5 drops of r-0014...keep adding borax until you get PH to at least 7...that is dangerously low. You could also use arm and hammer washing soda or PH+ (they raise TA much faster, but don't want to see you over shoot)
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by Melt In The Sun
    Anything you add to raise your pH will also raise TA, so you'll be tackling both at once by adding soda ash.
    Thank you for your fast responses and help! Just a few more questions: Where can I get this soda ash? Approximately how expensive is it? And, most importantly, approximately how much do I need to add?

    My pool is a 21' round, 54" deep, approximately 12k gallons.
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    You have no TA and I suspect that this is causing your pH to act wild like it is.

    My suggestion is to use the Pool Calculator and add enough baking soda to get your TA to about 70 or 80. This will also raise your pH, which needs to come up anyway, to a degree. Once your TA is up, recheck and adjust your pH.

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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by tduff311
    Quote Originally Posted by Melt In The Sun
    Anything you add to raise your pH will also raise TA, so you'll be tackling both at once by adding soda ash.
    Thank you for your fast responses and help! Just a few more questions: Where can I get this soda ash? Approximately how expensive is it? And, most importantly, approximately how much do I need to add?

    My pool is a 21' round, 54" deep, approximately 12k gallons.
    ARM and Hammer washing soda...laundry detergent aisle (just be careful not to use A&H Laundry detergent)...other wise PH+ from walmart or pool store...baking soda and borax would likley be the cheaper route
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by dmanb2b
    WOW...OK...just saw the pic of the comparator...if that is the shade you are getting with 5 drops of r-0014...keep adding borax until you get PH to at least 7...that is dangerously low. You could also use arm and hammer washing soda or PH+ (they raise TA much faster, but don't want to see you over shoot)
    Yikes, does this explain why my wife complains of a tingling sensation in the water? Hope my 8 month old son is ok

    Alright, to tackle this problem immediately.....I am on a tight budget....so, with that being said, what is the best option for getting this resolved quickly and effectively? Soda Ash, Borax, or pH plus? And how much of that item should I need to get the pH where I want it (u say 7)?

    What's the worst that could happen to an infant in this water over the past few days repeatedly?
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by 257WbyMag
    You have no TA and I suspect that this is causing your pH to act wild like it is.

    My suggestion is to use the Pool Calculator and add enough baking soda to get your TA to about 70 or 80. This will also raise your pH, which needs to come up anyway, to a degree. Once your TA is up, recheck and adjust your pH.
    Alright, I have the Pool Calculator up and want to make sure I have all the right goals set up. Could you please tell me where I should set my goals for my particular pool (21' round, 54" deep, 12k gallons) under the BBB method with an inline chlorinator feeding 3" tri-tabs?
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by 257WbyMag
    You have no TA and I suspect that this is causing your pH to act wild like it is.

    My suggestion is to use the Pool Calculator and add enough baking soda to get your TA to about 70 or 80. This will also raise your pH, which needs to come up anyway, to a degree. Once your TA is up, recheck and adjust your pH.
    Also, another concern......big one actually.....how do I use the pool calculator without an accurate pH reading to use? Obviously the test results have no number value to them, but aren't 0.
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    Your family will be fine.

    As 257 said, just adjust the TA, retest, and re-adjust as needed. Adding TA will change the pH, but it's difficult to predict by how much.
    11,200 gal, Pebble-Tec; Tristar 2-speed 1hp - Swimclear 325 ft2 cart - SWG - A & A in-floor cleaner - Heat pump. For the poolside cooking, a Yoder Wichita and a Big Steel Keg!
    TF Test Kits -- PoolMath -- Pool School
    Make each day your masterpiece. - John Wooden

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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by Melt In The Sun
    Your family will be fine.

    As 257 said, just adjust the TA, retest, and re-adjust as needed. Adding TA will change the pH, but it's difficult to predict by how much.
    Thank you. I will adjust the TA and repost results tomorrow. Thanks for everyone's help. For my future maintenance, what are the goal values I should be at for my specific pool (for the pool calculator)?
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    Re: New member: No pH no CC: Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by dmanb2b
    Welcome to TFP ...with CYA at 55 you want your FC to never drop below 4-5ppm and your target FC is 6-7ppm.

    Now on to your main issue, you are describing the TA test and your alkalinity appears to be zero...your PH is tested by using the phenol red r-0014 in the K-1000 comparator, included with the tf100. (where you compare shades of red)

    You most likely bumped you PH too high, but not sure how big your pool is?

    To adjust TA up, you need plain old baking soda...walmart sells 12lb bags for around $7

    Hope this helps
    Pool Calculator says to add 197 oz of baking soda (approx a 12 lb bag of baking soda! )...do I poor it all at once into the skimmer?
    12k gallons; AG round 21'x 54"; Cartridge filter; Magnetek Century LASAR 1081/1563 (1.5HP ?) Pump; 28GPM flowrate Filter

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    Your answer is in Pool School here:http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...mmended_levels

    Reading the rest of pool school (big button in upper right corner) would be well worth your time as well.

    The pool calculator will tell you how much to add. Enter 0 in the "now" column for TA; enter 80 in the "target" column, and the amount required will be shown to the right. You may need more than 12 lbs.
    11,200 gal, Pebble-Tec; Tristar 2-speed 1hp - Swimclear 325 ft2 cart - SWG - A & A in-floor cleaner - Heat pump. For the poolside cooking, a Yoder Wichita and a Big Steel Keg!
    TF Test Kits -- PoolMath -- Pool School
    Make each day your masterpiece. - John Wooden

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    Re: New member: No TA, low pH: Advice?

    yup...12 lbs should raise your TA to 70 or so...plus the borax you have already added should put your TA somewhere around 80....just broadcast it over your water surface and keep the pump running...I just checked it on http://www.poolcalculator.com
    As melt says...now is a good time to start reading pool school...right after you get that TA and PH up
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

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