I'm so thankful to find this site - I was searching for answers on why our pool is always cloudy or greenish or otherwise not great...however, I am now overwhelmed at how much I was doing wrong!
We bought a metal frame pool at walmart last summer, put it up, threw chlorine in the floater basket when we remembered - scrubbed it when it got yucky, and used it half the year like that. Clear water, even! My chemicals & test kit consisted of what w-mart had - the chlorine tablets, algae treatment liquid, ph minus (and plus) and 5 or 6 way test strips.
This year, is another story - have had it up longer, lots & lots of rain too, and am noticing the problems - my FC level doesn't budge. Green algae, which then results in cloudy water for days when I thought I was "shocking" the pool by using the recommended amount of the "shock treatment" from the store (dump in certain # of oz, wait 1/2 hr, tah dah. Or in my case, no tah-dah!)
Pump too small for the pool, I'm sure - I knew that from day one. So far my immediate list consists of: ordering a real test kit. Using liquid bleach instead of powders. and replacing the pump (which may wait til next spring at this date...pools aren't a year round venture in the midwest!) I'm very interested in sand filters -- however a big one might exceed what I can justify spending - so I'm torn between a larger cart. filter & a smaller sand filter... I won't even post test results until I have a decent test instead of trying to decide if a bar on the test is more orange or red or blue/purple or purple/blue!
I'm hoping I'm not the only one who started out a pool idiot! Any BTDT advice from anyone who started out in similar situation?