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Thread: Hi, new member

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Hi, new member

    Hello all, I am so excited to have found this site! With no research whatsoever, and just a stubborn dose of common sense tempered with a healthy frustration with the $$$ spent at the local Leslie's over the years, this week I started to dump generic Clorox into the pool. Now I found the site and realize that in fact I may not be a complete crackpot! Now I just need to do it right. I fired the pool guys a year ago and have been managing the pool by trial and error (only recently started using "strip testers"), to medicore results- I think the only success I have had has been due to brushing the pool every day while swimming with the kids and lots of elbow grease (vacuming, etc). I want to learn how to approach this more scientifically, using a proper test kit, and the BBB method. I would like to try to get the pool more balanced this weekend, and will need to go to Wally world to stock up. If I could some general shopping list help, that would be great. Assume I am completely clueless. I'm not even totally sure how many gallons my pool is! I've done some searches but honestly don't really know what I am searching for. Here's some info:

    In ground kidney shaped pool, about 40' x 14' 6.5' deep in deep end, 4' deep in shallow end.
    DTE filter 60 SF, in line tablet (chlorinator?)
    Single speed pump, on 24/7
    Gunnite (starting to deteriorate, I have what look like golf-ball size "fingerprint" indentations all over it that algae loves to grow in
    Green algae sometimes (just brushed a ton of it off today)
    Gooey Black algae spots, all over cant seem to scrub them off
    Hot, hot Texas location, lots of trees but in sun most of day
    monkey kid swimmers all the time, dogs and even a Guinea Pig

    help......

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Hi, new member

    Pool School should be your next stop.

    Don't load up on anything until you know what you need, and you won't know that until you test, and you can't test until you have a proper kit. Read the test kits compared in pool school, then go order a TF100 and a speedstir. Best money you'll ever spend on that hole in the ground. hint: Become a site supporter for $30 and you'll save $10 on the kit.

    I suppose you could stock up on chlorine at Wally World, you'll be using a lot if you have algae.

    Bookmark http://www.poolcalculator.com/ too. Once that kit arrives, you'll be referring to it often.
    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!

  3. Back To Top    #3
    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Hi, new member

    Well you have come to the right place...

    Start in Pool School (if you haven't already).
    Order yourself a one of the recommended test kits - (order online, trust me)
    then post a full set of test results so we can help you begin to balance.

    As for the gallons, folks round here are real good at helping newbs figure out the gallonage. Hang tight on that one...

    Can you post a pic of the surface (wanna see those indents)... use Photobucket.com and then post the IMG code in your message here.

    Hang in there, we'll get you on the road to a trouble-free pool!
    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

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Re: Hi, new member

    Well, the first thing is to read through Pool School. I'll admit it made my head hurt the first few times I went through it, so I'll suggest that you may want to actually print it out to read at your leisure. You may also want to start a Pool Book that records what condition the pool is in now, what tests you run, and what chemicals you add -- it helps to keep it all straight over time.

    Then you will need accurate test data. Strips can give you a guesstimate, maybe, depending on how well you can tell one color from the next, but that is not accurate enough for our methods. So, IMO the first item to buy is the test kit. I suggest http://tftestkits.net/splash-page.html for the TF100 or whichever size kit seems to make sense for you. I have the TF100 plus the SpeedStir -- which I really love. Service is fast and the prices are fair.

    Just for info, what does the strip tester tell you? Don't try to make any exact number out of the strips, just tell us what the indicated range is, like Free Chlorine between this and that value, and so on. We want to know Free Chlorine, Combined Chlorine, Total Chlorine, pH, Calcium Hardness or Total Hardness, Total Alkalinity, Cyanuritic Acid or Stabilizer or Conditioner or CYA.

    Meanwhile, you can add that info about your pool to your profile so that it shows with every post, it helps us to know your situation.

    Oh, and welcome to the forum, you will be amazed how easy it can be to take care of your pool.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: Hi, new member

    Wow! I am blown away by all the responses already. Went outside and swirled my little swizzle stick around and came up with this: (its drizzling rain right now)
    FC: .5 (low)
    PH: 6.2
    TA: 120

    the colors are really hard to match but did the best I could! I really want to get on top of this during the long weekend, I live in a big city- is there anywhere I could just go and buy a decent test kit so I could start the mad scientist bit now??? Leslie's is right down the street! Blasphemy!!

  6. Back To Top    #6

    In the Industry

    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: Hi, new member

    Welcome to the forum. You'll find everyone very willing to help you get your pool in tip-top shape.

    A ph of 6.2 is much lower than most pool tests measure.....how did you get that result? If it's correct, you will want to move your pH into the mid 7's right away. I would confirm that result, even if it means getting Leslies to test for you.

    I have a vested interest in this (I sell the TF-100) but it is very rare to find the Taylor K-2006 in any pool store. Pool stores just don't understand the importance of the tests....the K-2005 is not an adequate substitute.....don't buy it. The TF-100 is only sold online and not found locally anywhere.

    You will never regret purchasing either of those kits but you will almost surely have to do it online.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  7. Back To Top    #7
    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Hi, new member

    Welcome to TFP

    I think you find that most of us hear use either the TF100 or the Taylor K2006 for testing. There is an article in pool school that compares the test kits we recommend, but I must say most of us think the TF100 is the better value (larger reagent sizes...and oh by the way...psst...they are taylor reagents in a neat little tackle box) and since Duraleigh is the owner of TFtestkits.net as well as TFP...you would be supporting the folks that made this great resource available to us

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...kit_comparison

    Welcome
    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

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Re: Hi, new member

    Ok, I'll order the TF100 tomorrow, I'm sure it will help when you guys need chem data to make reccomendations. Maybe in the meantime I will get the el cheapo Wal- Mart tester so I can get some work done this weekend (anything is better than these silly test strips, the colors don't match).

    The 6.2 PH result I got from the results chart on the test strip bottle (match the color and the numerical range is beneath it) totally random as the result color could just as easily been matched to one of the colors a bit higher up on the chart.

  9. Back To Top    #9
    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Hi, new member

    if you are not far from Raleigh, NC, if you order the tf100 today, you could have it easily by Friday. If you do decide to get the walmart kit...you want the $19.97 6 way HTH drop based kit...but you could easily wait for the TF100.
    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

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Re: Hi, new member

    Hey, Im on the site now trying to order the kit. Is there a discount for members of this board? There's a space in the checkout for "discount".

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: Hi, new member

    There's a discount for supporters; to get it you need to donate to the site.
    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

  12. Back To Top    #12

    Re: Hi, new member

    WOHOO! DONE!

    Payment Info
    ---------------------------
    Visa



    Order Summary
    --------------------------
    1 - TFTestkits TF-100 @ $68.00

    --
    1: Total Items


    Subtotal: $68.00
    Tax: $0.00

    Discount: -$0.00
    S/H: $14.95
    Total: $82.95
    Gift Certificate: -$0.00
    Grand Total: $82.95

  13. Back To Top    #13

    Re: Hi, new member

    welcome to the site!! i would start up another topic about your pool size... just ask "how many gallons of water is in my pool" someone will figure it out for you! in the meantime if you scroll down to the bottom of our posts you will notice how we all have our pool info at the bottom. it would help if u did the same.... go back to the home screen........... click on your avatar picture (even if there isnt one)...... next look at the menu buttons going paralell on your screen...... click on the profile button......... next look at the menu going verticle on the left side of the screen.... click on "edit signature".... now u can put your info into your signature!!!! GOOD LUCK!!
    24' X 52" round above ground pool---13,500 gallons---Hayward power flow matrix 1.5 hp pump---Hayward 21 in. variflow XL sandfilter---Louisville, Ky

  14. Back To Top    #14

    Join Date
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    Re: Hi, new member

    Welcome to TFP!!

    You are certainly on the right track You've come here, read some and listened to what's been said

    I'll go out on a fairly sturdy limb and guess that your CYA is through the roof, and that's why you've got the algae, it'll also explain the VERY low pH,

    Continue to read and learn, ask us any questions you have - once you get the TF100 and can give us good numbers - we'll get you trouble free (you may well have to replace some of the water in your pool to correct the current problems )
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

  15. Back To Top    #15

    Re: Hi, new member

    WHOA!! I just got my test kit in, wow this thing is HUGE. What in the heck do I do with this thing?

  16. Back To Top    #16
    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Hi, new member

    Start using it....
    Don't be intimidated. It's super easy...
    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

  17. Back To Top    #17

    Re: Hi, new member

    Quote Originally Posted by Bark3rd
    What in the heck do I do with this thing?
    Just start at the beginning. Get a sample about elbow deep from the deep end of the pool after the filter has been running about an hour or more. Then start with the daily tests using the little blue box. When you get to the other tests where more drops are needed, count out loud so people know why you are not answering them. ("Mom! Can I eat this now??" "16, 17, 18, not now, 19, 20")

    I reorganized my box so that the test bottles were arranged in the same order as the instructions, but I had to start at the lower left to make it work well, using some dividers and moving some. Add a pencil with an eraser. Find a nice place to store it, like in the house near a sink, I keep mine in the laundry room. I also suggest that you take notes of what you add based on the tests and what the target was for that addition.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

  18. Back To Top    #18

    Join Date
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    San Rafael, CA USA
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    12,082

    Re: Hi, new member

    Also realize that after you get a baseline set of numbers from all tests, you will only be doing the pH and chlorine tests regularly. The other parameters do not change very quickly so will test them far less frequently.
    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
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Re: Hi, new member

    OK, finally whipped out the monster kit and went to work, here are the results-I have guests coming to swim in 2 hours!!! pool is green!!! going to scrub and vacum, any reccomendations on some chems to get me through today would be great. Pool is 16000 gallons. Pool calculator says to add 100oz to get to FC target of 4. This sound right?


    FC: 1 PPM
    CC: .5 PPM
    T/A: 90
    CH: 260
    PH 7.5

  20. Back To Top    #20
    kenmar's Avatar
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    Re: Hi, new member

    Can you do the CYA test? It is inportant to know the CYA level when calculating your target CL level.
    20'x40' / 30,000 Gal / In Ground / Vinyl
    Pentair FNS 48 DE Filter / Pentair Challenger 1.5 HP Pump
    Jandy Lite2 400k BTU Propane Heater / Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    TF-100 Test Kit / BBB
    Creator of SimplePool (BBB Friendly Android App) http://www.simplepool.net

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