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Thread: Start up questions re PS

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    Start up questions re PS

    I thought it would be easier to plug in the PS directions and ask my questions accordingly:


    Traditional Start-up
    Your builder will normally take care of the first five steps and then turn it over to you.

    * Check all equipment and make sure it's functional.

    This is all the PB is doing, the rest is up to me...btw, is it normal for a PB to NOT give a homeowner start up info if they decide to do it themselves? They seem slightly annoyed by all of my questions.
    * Circulate the water, add sequestrant. Run pump 24 hours a day for first week.
    Do I need to add the sequestrant right away or just sometime within the same day as turning the pumps on?

    * Watch the filter pressure and clean the filter as soon as it rises 8-10 psi and right after vacuuming. The plaster dust might clog the filter quickly so keep an eye on it and clean the filter as needed.
    * After the first 48 hours vacuum daily before brushing using a vacuum head with brushes (such as used in vinyl pools) instead of wheels to prevent marring the plaster. Clean filter after vacuuming.

    So after the water has circulated 24 hours, do my first vacuum then brush? I got a standard vacuum head for plaster pools, is this really going to damage the plaster? PB said it should be fine, your thoughts?

    * After 72 hours add the CYA and then the chlorine SLOWLY to gradually bring it to the desired level.
    Is it okay to start with the pucks in a floater to get the initial levels started? And I am adding CYA seperately right?

    * Continue to brush, vacuum, test water balance, and clean the filter for one to two weeks, or 3 days after you see no plaster dust coming off when you brush.

    Also, I keep reading Alkalinity is key...when do I adjust for this? Do I retest the water after the sequestrant and then adjust?

    Sorry for so many questions, I just want to make sure I do this right! Thanks again!
    15,000 gallons, Cartridge Filters, IG,

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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    So after the water has circulated 24 hours, do my first vacuum then brush? I got a standard vacuum head for plaster pools, is this really going to damage the plaster? PB said it should be fine, your thoughts?
    This is the only one I can comment on... how would you feel if you marred the plaster because you wanted to save $20 after dropping $20,000 on a pool?
    Austin, TX, 15,000 Gallon, Sand Filter, IG plaster, 8 Gallon Liquidator

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    Quote Originally Posted by bubbles
    Traditional Start-up
    Your builder will normally take care of the first five steps and then turn it over to you.
    * Check all equipment and make sure it's functional.
    This is all the PB is doing, the rest is up to me...btw, is it normal for a PB to NOT give a homeowner start up info if they decide to do it themselves? They seem slightly annoyed by all of my questions.
    I don't know if normal is correct but we certainly hear it a lot.
    Quote Originally Posted by bubbles
    * Circulate the water, add sequestrant. Run pump 24 hours a day for first week.
    Do I need to add the sequestrant right away or just sometime within the same day as turning the pumps on?
    The sequestrant is a recommendation in case you have metals in your water. If you're sure you don't have any, then you don't need it UNLESS your PB "requires" it for your warranty.
    Quote Originally Posted by bubbles
    * Watch the filter pressure and clean the filter as soon as it rises 8-10 psi and right after vacuuming. The plaster dust might clog the filter quickly so keep an eye on it and clean the filter as needed.
    * After the first 48 hours vacuum daily before brushing using a vacuum head with brushes (such as used in vinyl pools) instead of wheels to prevent marring the plaster. Clean filter after vacuuming.
    So after the water has circulated 24 hours, do my first vacuum then brush? I got a standard vacuum head for plaster pools, is this really going to damage the plaster? PB said it should be fine, your thoughts?
    I would go to a local store that carries pool equip and buy the cheapest brush type vacuum head you can. Imagine this. You're vacuuming and the plaster dust clogs and axle on one of the vacuum head wheels so at that point you're dragging a wheel instead of it rolling. Can you imagine what's fixing to happen? Also the recommendation for one with brushes is to loosen the dust from the surface while your vacuuming.

    Quote Originally Posted by bubbles
    * After 72 hours add the CYA and then the chlorine SLOWLY to gradually bring it to the desired level.
    Is it okay to start with the pucks in a floater to get the initial levels started? And I am adding CYA seperately right?
    Yes, it's ok to start with pucks in a floater, just make sure it can't get stuck right against a wall. The tabs will be adding a little CYA so target lower than you really want it to be. You can always add a little more but it's hard to remove any.

    Quote Originally Posted by bubbles
    * Continue to brush, vacuum, test water balance, and clean the filter for one to two weeks, or 3 days after you see no plaster dust coming off when you brush.
    Also, I keep reading Alkalinity is key...when do I adjust for this? Do I retest the water after the sequestrant and then adjust?
    You can adjust your alkalinity anytime. As a matter of fact, you're going to be adjusting it for the first little while without even trying. Everytime you add acid to bring the pH down you're bring the alk down a bit. And since new plaster causes the pH to raise you'll have to add acid pretty regularly.

    Quote Originally Posted by bubbles
    Sorry for so many questions, I just want to make sure I do this right! Thanks again!
    Ask away. That's the best thing you can do and we don't mind the questions at all.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    Thank you SO MUCH! I just know it's going to get easier and less overwhelming...just not there quite yet!
    So more questions in the meantime ( lol, I woke up last night from dreaming about what I was missing)...I know PS said to start balancing the chem slowly and I am going to follow that..just wondering when I should start adjusting for ph and alkalinity and calcium and start adding stuff...after the 72 hour mark? Also, the pool has been sitting without the pumps running for the last 24 hours so does that change the timeline for me as far as adding stuff and starting to sweep?
    The guy is on his way now to start up the pumps. I certainly don't want to start off with algae either, temps running about 80 during the day here now.
    Thanks for the input about the vacuum too, I willl go get a cheapy brush vacuum when I pick up the sequestrant in a bit.
    thanks again !!!
    15,000 gallons, Cartridge Filters, IG,

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    Just consider the time the pump starts as Zulu time (hour zero) and go from there. A day one way or the other really isn't a make or break situation.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    Please bear in mind that the person sent to do certain tasks may know know the answers but doesn't want to let on or has been instructed to. Pride and appearance are funny that that way. If I were to send an employee to check the pH and add acid and the homeowner asked questions they didn't know the answers to, they will know not to make a guess but rather to ask the client to call me. The pride issue sometimes gets in the way of things like that.

    WRT to vacuuming, new plaster finishes should be given several weeks of curing before attempting a vacuuming. In addition to the concern Noggin mentioned about a wheel getting stuck is the potential for the suction to cause a delamination of the plaster from the shell, forming a blister. The longer into the cure, stronger the bond will be.

    I scoop debris with the soft edged scoop net I use on liner pools.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    Ok, today is ground zero for starting my start up! check! Just got back with my magic jack's blue stuff, will be adding that after I get my own baseline water sample.
    I also got a cheapy vinyl liner pool vac head for vacuuming...so I should wait on that? But I start brushing today right? I have my handy wall whale ready to go.
    Also, I know I wait several days before starting to add chems right? chlorine being the first? and with the suggestion that the floater might bump against the wall, I will go ahead with regular ol clorox when I do add chlorine.
    Thanks!!
    15,000 gallons, Cartridge Filters, IG,

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    For a new plaster startup, after the initial no-chlorine period, it is handy to use trichlor tablets. The pump is normally left running 24x7 for the first few weeks anyway, so the trichlor can be put in the skimmer basket if you don't have a tablet feeder. (Don't have trichlor in the skimmer when the pump is off.) Trichlor will add chlorine and CYA, both slowly which is important, and also help keep the PH down.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    Thank you Jason! I like that idea alot.
    15,000 gallons, Cartridge Filters, IG,

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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    BTW, since I am going to be using the pucks to bring up the chlorine slowly, how many should I add? Since we have lived here, I always put 3 in the floater and leave the holes at the bottom half open. Is that too much to start out?
    15,000 gallons, Cartridge Filters, IG,

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    Re: Start up questions re PS

    Quote Originally Posted by bubbles
    BTW, since I am going to be using the pucks to bring up the chlorine slowly, how many should I add? Since we have lived here, I always put 3 in the floater and leave the holes at the bottom half open. Is that too much to start out?
    You can stick three or four in there and be just fine. What really determines how much FC is released into the water with the floaters in how much water movement takes place across the tablets in the floater. A floater with three tablets and lots of water moving across the surfaces of the tablets will release more FC in a shorter period of time than a floater with four tablets and little to no water movement will.

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