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Thread: Start-up after Drain

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    phipsi1237's Avatar
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    Start-up after Drain

    Hi. I drained my pool today to get a fresh start. We live in Las Vegas, and the pool is going into it's 4th season. We just moved into the house a few weeks ago, and this is my first pool. I went by the pool store today to buy a new brush and asked about the startup. She started rambling on about shock, muriatic acid, and something else (maybe a conditioner).

    So, the pool is refilling now. The only test kit I have is one from Leslie's that tests pH and chlorine. Since I'll need to get it going tomorrow or Saturday, should I go ahead and buy the big test kit from Leslie's, or just have them test it. Is there any reason to wait until the pool is completely filled to test it?

    What kind of chemicals can I expect to need for this startup? I currently have about 340oz of bleach.I know there are many different variables that play into this, I just wanted to get some kind of idea. This forum is great and I look forward to working
    14.5K gal Plaster IGP, Intelliflo VS, EasyTouch 8, SWG, IntellipH, Clear and Clean 420 Cartridge Filter, Attached Spa, H400IDL2 NG Heater

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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    Bleach, Muriatic acid, CYA and baking soda should get you started. Dont buy anything from Leslies. Use the test kit you have until you can buy one from this site or a similiar one from Leslies.
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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    For right now you just need bleach and CYA. You can wait and see on the Muriatic Acid and the baking soda. You do need to go ahead and get a high quality test kit, such as the TF 100 or the Taylor K2006. Leslie's usually does not stock the K2006 and will try to sell you a K2005 which does not have the two of the tests you will need, a calcium test (for that extra hard Arizona water) and the CYA test (to test you stabilizer levels and prevent having to drain again in 4 years). IMHO the TF 100 is the better value, (larger bottles of reagents) but shop around online and decide for yourself.

    Have Leslie's run a full set of tests but pay particular attention to the CH (calcium) TA (Alkalinity) and pH. We know you will need Chlorine and stabilizer. You can use The Pool Calculator to see how much Chlorine (FC) and stabilizer (CYA) you will need to start.
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    Without any CYA (Cyanuric acid, stabilizer, conditioner) ever how much is chlorine in your fill water is going to be used up quickly. So as mentioned above, chlorine is your first priority. 3½ cups of 6% bleach will raise your FC by 2ppm so you need to add that much every day until you get the CYA in the pool.

    If you have time, you can have Leslies test your fill water before your pool is full because whatever is in the fill water is going to be in the pool. You can go ahead and buy ~3 lbs of CYA. That'll raise your CYA to about 50 ppm in a 7,000 gal pool. I don't know what sizes Leslies has it in but Walmart sells it in 3 lb containers. If the pool is already full just have them test that. Don't buy anything except CYA and/or liquid chlorine until you come back with the numbers and plug them into the Pool Calc.

    To reinforce what was said above, you need a good test kit. It's the most valuable tool your can have in order to maintain you pool in the most Trouble free way!
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    The pool is almost finished filling. I took a sample to the PS, but their computer wasn't up yet. So, he told me to add chlorine, CYA, and Muriatic acid (8oz). He handed me a bottle of conditioner (CYA) and told me to put almost all of it in. I put the bottle back and grabbed a tub of powder, and he said he wouldn't use that this time of the year and that it would take 14 days for it to show up. Of course, the liquid was twice as much as the tub.

    So, as soon as the pool finishes filling, I'll know the volume. I have the bleach and liquid conditioner to start with.

    Now: The goal listed for FC is 3 to 7. That is about a difference for me adding 40oz or 96oz. How do I know what goal to start with?

    Thanks.
    14.5K gal Plaster IGP, Intelliflo VS, EasyTouch 8, SWG, IntellipH, Clear and Clean 420 Cartridge Filter, Attached Spa, H400IDL2 NG Heater

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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    The liquid CYA isn't usually recommended because of the expense but it's immediately dissolved in the pool. If you add 96oz of liquid CYA that'll get you to about 40ppm. Your goal for the FC is then (as you said) 3 to 7. I usually aim for middle of the range so about 5ppm FC. You need a little over 2 quarts of 6% chlorine to raise your FC by 5ppm. So that's what I'd add. Don't add any acid until you get a reading on the pH. We don't advocate adding any chems blindly. Test and then add what you need.
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    It may take the CYA a few days (not 14!) to register on the test, but you dose the pool according to the target CYA level for what you added to the pool. If you put in enough CYA to reach 40ppm then dose the pool based on the 40ppm level. If your FC range is 3-7 you want to add enough FC to reach 7 and not let it go lower than 3. It should take a couple of days to drop to the bottom of the range once the CYA is active.
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    The pool is finished filling. I came up with 6300 gallons, instead of 7000. So, I'm about to add chlorine and liquid CYA. I have muriatic acid as well, but will not add yet because I don't know the TA. I'm coming up with 65oz of 6% bleach and 87oz of CYA. Sound good?
    14.5K gal Plaster IGP, Intelliflo VS, EasyTouch 8, SWG, IntellipH, Clear and Clean 420 Cartridge Filter, Attached Spa, H400IDL2 NG Heater

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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    Water tested this morning at PS. Results as follows.

    FAC: 4
    TAC: 4
    CYA: 40
    TA: 90
    pH: 7.9
    Acid: 1
    TDS: 500
    Pho: 50

    I'm going to add 7.4oz of muriatic acid to bring the pH down. I should be set then, right? Now I'll just need to test the pH and Chlorine every night. My TF kit should be here early next week. Right now all I have is a tester for pH and Chlorine. Also, they said the phosphates are fine now, but over time I'll have to add some phosfree. No one talks much about phosphates around here. Anything to it?

    Thanks for all the help. You folks rock.
    14.5K gal Plaster IGP, Intelliflo VS, EasyTouch 8, SWG, IntellipH, Clear and Clean 420 Cartridge Filter, Attached Spa, H400IDL2 NG Heater

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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    Yep, a little acid and you are fine. I would call it 7 oz even, and not worry about fractions of an oz.

    Just ignore your phosphate level. As long as you maintain appropriate FC levels your phosphate level can be anything and you still won't get algae.
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    I added the acid about 4 1/2 hours ago, and now i'm showing 7.8. I know it's almost a guess reading the color scale, but I feel it should be lighter than it is. Should I add more, or give it more time. Also, the muriatic acid had been sitting outside (shaded) for about a year. I tested it with a penny, and it reacted so I figured it was good.

    Thanks.
    14.5K gal Plaster IGP, Intelliflo VS, EasyTouch 8, SWG, IntellipH, Clear and Clean 420 Cartridge Filter, Attached Spa, H400IDL2 NG Heater

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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    The acid is still good. pH is hard to read so it could have been over 7.9. Also, your pool may be larger than you think. Also again, the acid could be less strength than you think it is.
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    I'm about positive the pool is 6300 gal. I just finished filling it yesterday, so unless the water meter is bad, it's 6300. The 7.9 was the reading from the PS, I guess his could be higher than 7.9 as well. Is it ok to go ahead and add a little more (6oz) to bring it down from 7.8 to 7.5? Or do I need to wait?
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    Do you have a result for CH (calcium)? Desert areas tend to have water high in CH and it will be an important number to know to keep your pool in balance. There are different pH and TA recommendations for high levels of CH in the water.

    Go ahead and add the 6oz of MA and see if it gets you to 7.5. It should be close, unless your pH is more than the test shows.
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    I don't know the CH. I guess I'll be able to test it in a few days when my TF kit gets here. It is a new fill though. I'll go ahead with the 6oz of acid. How long does it normally take to register? I have a 1.5hp pump on a small pool, so it shouldn't take long, right? Also, how come the numbers for pH don't change on the pool calculator if I adjust the CH levels?
    14.5K gal Plaster IGP, Intelliflo VS, EasyTouch 8, SWG, IntellipH, Clear and Clean 420 Cartridge Filter, Attached Spa, H400IDL2 NG Heater

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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    pH is still showing 7.8. I just added another 6oz of MA. I'll test in again in a little while to see if it changes. I'll go ahead and take another sample to the PS as well just to make sure I'm not screwing up the reading. How long should it take for the MA to register a change in pH? With my oversized PB pump (1.5hp for 6300gal pool), it should be turning over about every hour or so. If it doesn't work this time, I have another gallon of MA that's been sitting just as long, but it hasn't been opened. Maybe it will work better. Or, should I just go buy some new MA?

    Thoughts?
    14.5K gal Plaster IGP, Intelliflo VS, EasyTouch 8, SWG, IntellipH, Clear and Clean 420 Cartridge Filter, Attached Spa, H400IDL2 NG Heater

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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    Muriatic acid mixes in fairly quickly. Give it at least 30 minutes with the pump running after adding acid before testing again.

    Muriatic acid has a very long shelf life. It is far more common to see lower concentrations than you expect than it is for it to spoil over time.
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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    Quote Originally Posted by phipsi1237
    I don't know the CH. I guess I'll be able to test it in a few days when my TF kit gets here. It is a new fill though. I'll go ahead with the 6oz of acid. How long does it normally take to register? I have a 1.5hp pump on a small pool, so it shouldn't take long, right? Also, how come the numbers for pH don't change on the pool calculator if I adjust the CH levels?
    CH doesn't affect the level of the pH. If you have high CH you need to keep the pH around 7.2 and the TA 70-90 to prevent scale from forming on the surfaces in the pool.
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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    After adding a total of 19oz of 29% MA over the last 29 hours, I'm still getting a pH of 7.8. I'll take a sample to the PS tomorrow to see what they come up with. I started this with a new fill, would it be common for the fill water to be a lot higher than 7.8?
    14.5K gal Plaster IGP, Intelliflo VS, EasyTouch 8, SWG, IntellipH, Clear and Clean 420 Cartridge Filter, Attached Spa, H400IDL2 NG Heater

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    Re: Start-up after Drain

    Does your acid have fumes? If it is good it should have fumes.

    Fill water comes with lots of different PH values depending on where you are, both higher and lower than 7.8. But that doesn't matter, your PH test should have been able to read the initial PH and detect the change in PH.

    I suppose your PH indicator reagent could have gone bad. That happens occasionally, though it is uncommon. When it goes bad it often "stains" the bottle it is in.
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