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Thread: In Algae Limbo

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    In Algae Limbo

    Hi,

    I'm not sure how the sig is going to come out so let me start by saying I have a 21 foot, circular ABP with 10-11,000 gallons in it. It has a Hayward 2 HP pump. We bought the pool three years ago, along with a Zodiac Nature2 Chlorinator that also comes with some expensive little cartridge (A30) that is supposed to put minerals in the pool and allow you to save money on chlorine because you only need to keep it at .5 PPM. Feel free to comment on the validity of that claim...

    The first year, things went smoothly. Last year, we went out of town for a couple days and a lightning strike tripped a breaker on the pump. We came back to a green pool. Since then, we have battled algae continuously.

    This year, things started off okay but quickly turned murky. Did the usual pool store shocking with mixed results. The FC levels seem to be quite low most of the time, which would account for some of the problems...but my CYA is also low. All this based on strips (ordered a TF100XL last night).

    Anyway, against my better judgment (hadn't found you folks, yet) I called the pool store one more time and they talked me into some algaecide. They also sang the phosphate song and sold us a (relatively) inexpensive cartridge to put in the Zodiac unit for 15 minutes, then swap it for the A30 cartridge.

    I poured the required amount of algaecide in the pool and let it run for an hour, then came inside and started searching for better alternatives and found this site.

    This AM I had lots of green particulates that I did my best to vacuum (though the very act of turning on the pump stirs things up quite a bit). We also have a little robot of some sort that will pick up debris on the pool bottom so I can use that, although with the pump running, I assume relatively little will settle at this point.

    With no (reliable) test kit, I was impatient to move in some direction and reluctant to give up whatever ground the algaecide bought me, so I started pouring in bleach. We had a gallon and I sent my wife out to get more. While she was out, I had her grab some CYA, too. I added a little just so I wasn't running on 0, but based on other comments figure I won't really know how much is in there until the algae is all gone.

    As of right now, the pump is on 24x7 and I plan to keep pouring in bleach to keep the test strip up at 10 (where it stops talking). Generally, I plan to follow the instructions for getting rid of algae, but since I've already started off on the wrong foot with the algaecide and no appreciable CYA, I thought I'd wave my hands to see if there is anything else I should do at this point other than keeping the FC up and waiting for a decent test kit to arrive.

    thanks,
    sf
    21' AG, 10,000 Gallons
    Cartridge Filter, 2 HP Pump

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: In Algae Limbo

    Welcome to TFP.

    You can't assume you have no CYA, since most forms of chlorine contain it. Your chlorinator uses trichlor, which is stabilized chlorine and adds CYA to the water. You need to test for CYA to know where you stand.

    You can dilute your pool water sample 50-50(or more) with distilled water and then test the mixture to extend the range of your test strips.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

  3. Back To Top    #3
    poolgirl22's Avatar
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    Re: In Algae Limbo

    You can do a search for Nature 2 and find all kinds of discussion on it.
    Backyard pool-less, but used to be.....
    16,100 gallon, 18x38 3.5 ft deep oval AG, Vinyl, Sand, 1hp pump
    http://www.poolservicestech.com Liquidator
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    http://www.tftestkits.net TFT100 test kit

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Re: In Algae Limbo

    I've tested for CYA with the test strips and they are showing 0. But, it IS a test strip. I've also seen suggestions that CYA values are not always easy to determine when you have algae in the water (or perhaps I'm mis-remembering something). I'll certainly test again when the test kit arrives, but for now, I'm assuming it is 0. Of course, I'm brand new to this site and you should assume a knowledge level on par with my (stated) CYA levels...so, if you have other alternatives/suggestions/recommendations, please feel free to chime in.

    I did a search on Nature 2 yesterday and was not finding much (it kept picking up "nature"). I tried a few things with quotes and plus signs but had kind of given up on it. Since it was indicated that there HAD been discussion, I tried displaying posts and not topics this AM...much better and kind of what I was expecting. It does help explain some things...

    This morning the pool is looking much better...we've improved to a kind of grey/green. I don't think I mentioned it in the original post but the PH is 7.2 and the TA is kind of a low 40. I have lots of baking soda, should I try to increase the TA or just wait until the dust (or algae) settles?
    21' AG, 10,000 Gallons
    Cartridge Filter, 2 HP Pump

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    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: In Algae Limbo

    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

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Re: In Algae Limbo

    The test kit came in today (great turnaround from TFTestkits!). I ran the CYA test first and can still see the black dot when the tube is full, so I'm guessing I should add some CYA...

    The DPD test took 20 drops which I believe means my FC is at 10. The second part of the test showed no CCs, as the water stayed clear.

    The pool is still gray/green and murky. No real change from yesterday. Unless someone tells me otherwise, I guess just add CYA, keep the FC level up there and wait...?

    Of course, I'll go run the other tests, too.

    thanks,
    sf
    21' AG, 10,000 Gallons
    Cartridge Filter, 2 HP Pump

  7. Back To Top    #7
    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: In Algae Limbo

    Quote Originally Posted by sdf8
    The test kit came in today (great turnaround from TFTestkits!). I ran the CYA test first and can still see the black dot when the tube is full, so I'm guessing I should add some CYA...

    The DPD test took 20 drops which I believe means my FC is at 10. The second part of the test showed no CCs, as the water stayed clear.

    The pool is still gray/green and murky. No real change from yesterday. Unless someone tells me otherwise, I guess just add CYA, keep the FC level up there and wait...?

    Of course, I'll go run the other tests, too.

    thanks,
    sf
    It depends on the sample size for FC. Did you fill it to 10 or 25?
    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!

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Re: In Algae Limbo

    The instructions asked for 10 mL...I'm going to assume I followed them, but you never know...

    My "confusion" about the math was just because I didn't have the kit in front of me. The FC was 10.

    I've since run the other tests and the numbers are:

    FC = 10
    CC = 0
    CYA = 0
    TA = 90
    PH = 7.4 (somewhere between 7.2 and 7.5)
    CH = 170 (I assumed copper presence due to algaecide and Nature2 cartridge and followed instructions accordingly)

    thanks,
    sf
    21' AG, 10,000 Gallons
    Cartridge Filter, 2 HP Pump

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: In Algae Limbo

    Just in case anyone is following along at home...things continue to improve, slowly.

    The first couple days without a test kit probably slowed things down considerably. I did get a quick kill at the outset, but things kind of sat in the same state for a couple days after that. Even after the test kit arrived, I was only sort of doing things right. When I started without a test kit, I glossed over some instructions that didn't make much sense without the kit (hourly readings, say). So, when the kit arrived, I didn't really go back and read closely enough and I probably was not keeping the shock level high enough, consistently enough.

    But, in the last couple days, I have been following the directions more closely and everything is progressing. We've gone from green, to a dull gray/green, to bluish-gray. The gray seems to be mostly debris, which is slowly clearing. I can see a couple steps now, so it is a definite improvement. Overnight FC levels are still dropping a bit more than 1 PPM, but probably only fell 2 PPM last night so I'm hoping things are resolved in another day or two.

    sf
    21' AG, 10,000 Gallons
    Cartridge Filter, 2 HP Pump

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: In Algae Limbo

    Sounds very normal. Even the part about not checking often enough. Once you can test and see how quickly the chlorine disappears, then it clicks and you have it.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

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