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Thread: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

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    Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    I have just recently switched to the BBB method. My water is beautiful - crystal clear. I live in central Indiana. We have had tons of rain and hot weather so far this season.

    I have been testing with the k-2006 religiously. I know my TA is on the high side. I'm planning on using the advice on this forum to lower it.

    Despite my beautiful water, I have been losing chlorine (never below 2.0) like crazy. I did the overnight test last night and went from 30.0 to 16.0 FC. I know that having high TA can affect chlorine efficiency, but can it cause FC to drop that much in such a short period of time? Or, am I fighting algae?

    FC - 16.0
    CC - .5
    pH - 7.3
    TA - 160
    CH - 200
    CYA - 80
    Indiana, 20k gallons, in-ground, vinyl, 1.0hp whisperflow pump, sand filter

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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    Good morning and welcome to the forum. You have algae (even though you cannot see it).

    Two things consume chlorine.....1) sunlight and 2) organics (algae included) in your pool.

    It looks like you started the shock process yesterday. The best thing you can do right now is to bring your FC right back up to around 25 or so and KEEP IT UP THERE until the overnight loss gets down to 1ppm or less.

    read "How to Shock Your Pool" up in Pool School.

    How are you chlorinating the pool?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    Welcome to TFP!

    What duraleigh said. An overnight loss like that means algae, or some related organic problem. You need to continue shocking until the overnight loss is 1.0 or less.

    TA levels don't have any direct effect on chlorine consumption.
    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: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    I'm using bleach (6%). Thanks for your help.
    Indiana, 20k gallons, in-ground, vinyl, 1.0hp whisperflow pump, sand filter

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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    Using bleach, I would suggest allowing your CYA to eventually lower down to around 50ppm. You could also do a partial drain to get it done immediately if you choose.

    That would allow your FC levels to be lowered by a significant amount and still provide the protection you need against algae blooms.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    My goal is to get the cya down to 50 as soon as I get this taken care of.

    Is the pool okay to swim in while I'm shocking?
    Indiana, 20k gallons, in-ground, vinyl, 1.0hp whisperflow pump, sand filter

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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    Yes. Shock value (from the FC/CYA chart) is a guideline that we use for safe swimming. It's possibly much higher but shock value is an easy guide for all of us to remember.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    The recommendation to lower the CYA first is so that you'll need less bleach to acheive shock levels. Is there a particular reason you want to drain after shocking?
    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
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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    No particular reason - just tackling one giant at a time. Since it takes so long to refill the pool after a partial drain, I thought I would get on the algae since it seems more concerning. I have plenty of bleach on hand at the moment.
    Indiana, 20k gallons, in-ground, vinyl, 1.0hp whisperflow pump, sand filter

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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    Indy-
    Not sure what your situation is up there but I know here it takes awhile to refill as well. The water dept has flow valves on the meters to more evenly disperse the pressure...so I've often considered asking the neighbor if I could run a hose from their place to ours, then paying the portion of the water bill that month beyond their normal usage. It's an option.

    You'll really use less product to shock if you lower the CYA and refill. Even if you only do it 15 or 20% at at time. I'm so thrilled mines down from 55 to 45 since season beginning. All that rain we've had and wasting of water paid off a bit.

    Good luck!
    Backyard pool-less, but used to be.....
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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    Okay, so I have deferred to all of your (all of you) expertise and I did a partial drain today. Still refilling....
    Indiana, 20k gallons, in-ground, vinyl, 1.0hp whisperflow pump, sand filter

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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    Do you happen to know the lowest Free Chlorine (FC) level that occurred before you started to see this unusually high chlorine demand? Was your Cyanuric Acid (CYA) level 80 ppm at that time as it is now?
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    To be honest, I'm not sure what the levels were because I was having the pool company testing my water. I just got my k-2006 about a week and a half ago.
    Indiana, 20k gallons, in-ground, vinyl, 1.0hp whisperflow pump, sand filter

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    Re: Chemical Balance or Possible Algae?

    I think I am almost there with beating the algae (knock on wood). I only lost 5ppm FC overnight and my CC is now 0.

    One question - my TA has gone up to 200. Will this come down as the chlorine dissipates? I added some Ph down this morning. It brought the Ph down, but not the TA. That's why I wondered about the high level of FC having an effect on TA.
    Indiana, 20k gallons, in-ground, vinyl, 1.0hp whisperflow pump, sand filter

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