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Thread: New (old) house, new (old) pool

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    New (old) house, new (old) pool

    All -

    Like many others that stumbled on this fantastic resource, I purchased a foreclosure and got a heck of a deal but a pool that I didn't want. We have two very young daughters and all we could think was "safety issue." But, after giving it some thought, and a few quotes on removing it, we've decided to give it a season or two (with the installation of a pool safety fence, water alarm, etc).

    I'm reading through Pool School but thought I'd start a thread to document our hopeful transformation from swamp to sparkling paradise on the Lynnhaven Bay.

    According to the county the pool was built in 2001. A pool company came out for a free visual inspection and said the liner is 'newish' with a pattern that is only a few years old. We pulled back the cover partway but that's it. Who knows what it may look like beneath the cover. We don't think it has been used in at least two years.

    I've put in my signature everything I know. I still need to measure and use the calculator, but I'm not even to the point of worrying about chemicals yet. My first goal is to learn everything about the mechanics of the pool, how it works, what condition they are in, and what I need to get them running right.

    The pool company briefly turned them on just to make sure they ran, and they did, but other than that, I haven't done a thing.

    Here are some pics to better describe what I'm working with:

    ]
    Note the super sweet pool house!


    Surprise! It's just a shed and they put the pool equipment against the house.
    You can also see the electrical junction box for what I assume is a pool light. There was a diving board hiding this which we had to remove to insure a house with a pool that is a hurricane risk due to proximity to the Lynnhaven Bay. Ideas on how to cover that thing are appreciated!


    And this is what I'm working with. If any of this is wrong, tell me: the inlet is on the left, going into a strainer (?) through the pump, over to the DE filter and back out through the chlorinator to the pool. What is that pipe in the middle all alone? Is that a vacuum for a robot or something?


    PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump. That gasket at the top of the pic looks bad? And is that wire for grounding?


    Another riveting pump picture.


    I don't know what this is called. The big black switch thing.


    Side view of that thing. Not sure what those two open holes are facing me or the larger black port facing the house?


    The Purex Triton FNS Plus DE filter.


    That gauge was in the strainer basket at the pump with a few other miscellaneous parts - just put it up there for the pic, but that is where it goes, right? It is rusted, glass is fogged, seen better days. I haven't opened the DE filter yet and don't know what to expect.


    Hayward Chlorine Feeder. Had a few tabs left in there, sweet. The 'Push to Release' clip is broken but it closes tightly... would that cap really back off when it is under water pressure?


    One last shot of the pool...

    I will definitely have pics of the water shortly. It is black... not green, black. That cover has deteriorated over time and shed the mesh plastic bits into the water. Pool guy recommended we fish around with the net and get out all of the leaves and debris. Said if we run into anything "large" then we should drain the pool and refill. But otherwise he thinks we can shock it clean.

    Again, just thought I'd start this thread to document how this whole process goes. Hoping to get the mechanicals running first, then I'll address the water.

    Thanks in advance for any help you guys can provide.
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Welcome!!

    The pressure gauge with the air bleed is readily available at a pool store.

    I will also say you're very lucky to have that multiport valve. If you need to drain water, it makes it easy. If you just want to keep the water circulating while you kill stuff rather than clog the filter, that's do-able. And if there is a huge layer of leaves and mesh particles at the bottom, you can vacuum them up and spew them out and completely avoid the filter. Wish I had one......

    That chlorinator thing can be just considered there for looks. If you need to add CYA, it's easier to buy plain old CYA and add what you need all at once. And if you don't need to add any more, you won't be adding any via pucks.

    Before you get too deep into the restoration, get a test kit. More than anything else, reliable results are crucial to maintaining the water chemistry. Sounds like you've been to Pool School already, but I'll put that link there just in case. Many of your questions will already have been answered there, saving you a lot of typing.
    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!

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Ok, let me try to answer some of your questions, and those you may not know you have yet,

    First off remember the kids will grow, quicker than you think, and soon they will be to that age when it will be hard to pry them away from the pool in the summer, it is better to make plans now on how you will handle the eventuality of them wanting to invite friends and neighbors over to swim and stick with it.

    Pool school is a great place to start, just go back and reread it a time or two it can be a lot to take in at once.

    It is hard to tell where the edge of the pool is under the cover, but when you add your safety fence around the pool make sure to leave enough room that you feel you can safely walk around it without feeling like your about to fall in the whole time, remember you will need to have room to work there with a leaf scooper net, etc.

    As to the equipment, it looks functional, on the basic side, the DE filter is a bit more work than a basic sand filter, but also does a much better job of filtering, I have no first hand experience with this specific brand, but would not worry about any of it until it breaks, you can usually buy rebuild kits for pumps at a fraction of the cost of replacement, and these look like they may still have a few years of service left. Yes it is a ground wire, but it looks like the fastening clip may be broken, the outlet being GFCI is a good sign that the pump breaker may be also. I have no idea on the 3rd pipe, if it were an older pool I might guess a return line that went bad, or maybe a drain since the diverter valve has a hose barb connection on the waste port facing the brick wall. Replacement pressure gauges should be easy to find, I personally would shop mail order or ebay as the local pool stores in this area seem to put about 500% markup on such things. Like Richard said the best thing to do with the Chlorine feeder is to leave it there and ignore it. Chlorine feeders are an attempt by the pool industry to sell the idea of low maintenance pools to the public, using tablet style Chlorine in closed circuit pools in reality leads to all sorts of headaches that then let the pool stores sell more chemicals.

    Just a couple of other notes, don't remove the cover until your ready to start shocking it and cleaning it out, as soon as the cover comes off the algae will start growing out of control. Also be aware during the clean up shocking phase the DE filter will need to be cleaned very often since they are very effective at clearing stuff out of the water.

    Ike
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
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    crookm11's Avatar
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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Welcome to TFP! Make sure you read pool school and before you know it you will have Sparkeling Oasis.
    Mark Crook
    13,500 Gallon 24' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame
    Intex Sand Filter and Pump, Intex SWG (All hard PVC plumbed)
    TFTestKit-100---Pool School---The Pool Calculator
    Location: Copperas Cove, Texas --- My Pool Build---Useful Links for Intex Pool Owners

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    The middle pipe looks like something that was capped off in a previous renovation, quite possibly a main drain, or perhaps a skimmer.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

  6. Back To Top    #6

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Your Multiport Valve -

    The large outlet facing the house is the "waste" outlet. If you switch your multiport to "backwash" or "waste" all the water comes out there. Waste will take water from the pool directly out the outlet (bypassing filter). Backwash pushes water backwards through the filter to clean out the gunk and clean the grids.

    The smaller threaded hole on the outlet is where a sight glass would go. it's a little threaded glass cup that allows you to see the quality of the water when you are backwashing. You'll need to cap it or replace the glass or water will shoot out of there when you backwash the filter.

    Not sure what the other threaded hole is in the center there - water shouldn't be coming out of it in any case. If it does cap it - it's not integral to your set up.

    You'll may want to break that filter down and really clean it before you try to use it. I'd guess it's a solid mass of algae DE in there.

    I'll +1 on the test kit. The TF100 is the best deal out there. Pool School will allow you to bypass the painful process of allowing a pool store to take all your money.

    I've got a daughter too - she's loved our pool since she was 2 (4 now). It's the best part of the summer for us.
    16K Gal Plaster | Compupool SWG | Intelliflow VF | TF-100

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Welcome to the forum. We live very close to you in Little Neck and like you purchased an New (Old Home) a year ago with a pool. We have been lurking on here for a year. Follow their advice and purchase a good test kit. We bought our kit at Leslie's on the Blvd. We also have used Andy from Great Neck Pools to troubleshoot any issue we could not solve on this site. He did our pool inspection and walked us through all the equipment etc. We also shadowed him open and close our pool last year. We also cleared trees and added solar panels. This year we are tackling the large cracks in the pool deck and trying to decide the best way to make repairs: pull out, stamped concrete, or paver overlays. Hoping to start the project at the end of the season. Again welcome! The experts on this site are amazing and will have you up and running in no time.

    Amy
    24,000 SWG with Vinyl Liner, DE Filter
    Virginia Beach

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Richard320 - Glad the multiport valve is a good thing! Hoping it works still.

    So do you think I should be testing the water before I bother with restoring any of the mechanicals? My thinking was that the water can always be shocked or at the worst, dumped and refilled.
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Isaac-1 - Pool School is definitely a lot to take in at once, particularly for someone who has never had a pool. Will keep rereading it as I go through this process.

    EXCELLENT idea about spacing for the fence. I was thinking originally to keep it closer to the pool that way we might be able to buy one less panel, but I didn't even think about having to walk around it to scoop leaves (and we have huge trees in our yard). Will definitely space it back from the pool as much as possible to allow for walking around inside the fence.

    I will look for a rebuild kit for the DE filter. I'm assuming I need a new pressure gauge, maybe some gaskets, new DE filter panels. Now I should be able to get away with 'generic' kits that fit my filter, right? I imagine there is an industry that makes cheaper generic products for popular filters at a lower price?

    Interesting about what you and Richard said w/ the Chlorinator. Wondering if I should just take it out and put pipe all the way through. One less thing to leak/fail on me... hmm...
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    lightingguy - That's what I was afraid of. So when the valve switch is pointed to Waste, it points to that black outlet which makes sense. But why they would have the water come out right next to the house/foundation is beyond me. Sounds like a great way to introduce water to the crawlspace. When you backwash your filter, how much water comes out? Are we talking a lot? Depends on how dirty the filters are and how long you have to backwash I suppose? But I wonder if I should run flexible gutter from that away from the house.

    Would a pool company sell caps to cap off those two extra holes? And why would you need a sight glass to look at the water quality if it comes out right next to it. I'd think it would be easier to evaluate the quality of the water by looking at what is actually coming out of the waste outlet rather than peering through a sight glass?

    TF100 is next on my list for sure.

    My oldest daughter is 3 and she is a fish in the water, so I know all of this will be worth the effort. And I'm sure my youngest will love it too!
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Amy - Hi neighbor! We live right near Kings Grant and Little Neck! I've seen Leslies on the Blvd and will stop by to at least see what their prices are. If nothing else it'll be nice to have a pool store right near by in case I need something immediately and can't wait for something to be delivered.

    We have some cracked concrete on the patio portion of our backyard, but nothing on the newer concrete around the pool thankfully. We are thinking about building a wood deck on top of that bad part one day, but for now we'll be happy with a sparkling clear pool and some deck chairs from Craigslist!
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Quote Originally Posted by lambo
    Richard320 - Glad the multiport valve is a good thing! Hoping it works still.

    So do you think I should be testing the water before I bother with restoring any of the mechanicals? My thinking was that the water can always be shocked or at the worst, dumped and refilled.
    No....But you should order a test kit ASAP. You probably won't find the one you need at the local store. You'll need the pump and filter working to clear the pool, but without a test kit, you'll be working blind, or be at the mercy of the Leslies.

    Order the kit, then start playing with the rest of it. By the time you have water circulating you'll have the kit. Then you can get readings and decide if the water can be salvaged or if it needs to be drained. Either way, you'll need the test kit, whether shocking or startup.
    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!

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Quote Originally Posted by lambo
    lightingguy - That's what I was afraid of. So when the valve switch is pointed to Waste, it points to that black outlet which makes sense. But why they would have the water come out right next to the house/foundation is beyond me. Sounds like a great way to introduce water to the crawlspace. When you backwash your filter, how much water comes out? Are we talking a lot?
    Yes, a lot of water, hundreds of gallons at a minimum.

    What you should do is get a flexible discharge hose designed for use in this situation, something like these, and connect it to the outlet and route the water to somewhere suitable. You should certainly not have it coming out right there. To connect the hose you might need to add a barbed fitting.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

  14. Back To Top    #14

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Awesome idea Jason. And looks like I can just connect that when I backwash and then roll it up and put it in the shed when I'm done. Perfect.
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Just wanted to mention - you almost never want to completely drain and refill a pool. If you do decide to drain a lot of the water, keep at least a foot of water in your shallow end. And with the filter running, once you start to kill off the algae, expect your filter to clog rather rapidly and you will be backwashing quite a bit. That's likely why he was advising to just dump the water. But that's your trade off.

    Good luck with everything... first step - test kit. Post back with any other q's or issues
    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

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    The sight glass is for when that waste line is hooked up to your sewer line (or some other way you dont see the water coming out.)

    So when you start to backwash - the water in the sight glass would be brown and gradually it would turn clear - that way you know you are done.

    I would look for a new sight glass online (way cheaper). Here's one for $9 + $2 for a o-ring -

    http://www.poolcenter.com/parts_valves_ ... tiport.htm

    the other hole looks to be a standard thread - so a trip to the hardware store could possibly solve that - if in fact it leaks water. It could be a suction line from some piece of equipment that is no longer there... I dont know.

    As far a rebuild kits (new grids) - you may not need anything. It'll be dirty to be sure - but as long as there aren't any tears in the grids you can probably just clean everything real good - reload it with DE and you'll be good to go.

    Take it slow with Pool School and all those little abbreviations will start to make sense. Really there are just 2 relationships you need to worry about :
    1) FC and CYA - FC keeps the water clean and CYA protects FC from the sun. Keep that ratio inline and you'll never have algae issues
    2) PH, CH, TA - this relationship is about how your water reacts with your pool plaster. Since you have a vinyl liner calcium isn't much of an issue - unless it's really high. So you'll just worry about PH - keeps the water comfortable to swim in - and TA which will help keep your PH stable.

    Once you have your head wrapped around those concepts all the various products become much less of a mystery.

    And I can't say it enough - beware the pool store. Their tests are inaccurate and their products are expensive. It shouldn't be that way, but it is.....
    16K Gal Plaster | Compupool SWG | Intelliflow VF | TF-100

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    Just wanted to mention - you almost never want to completely drain and refill a pool. If you do decide to drain a lot of the water, keep at least a foot of water in your shallow end. And with the filter running, once you start to kill off the algae, expect your filter to clog rather rapidly and you will be backwashing quite a bit. That's likely why he was advising to just dump the water. But that's your trade off.

    Good luck with everything... first step - test kit. Post back with any other q's or issues
    I've seen some pics of pools where folks drained the water completely and it ended up popping up out of the ground. If we drain and refill, we will definitely leave some of the water in. Thanks for the advice!

    Test kit will be ordered shortly!
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

  18. Back To Top    #18

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    lightingguy - That makes more sense for the sight glass then if some folks have it drain straight to the sewer. I'll likely send the backwash to the far back of my property, so having a sight glass would come in handy rather than having to go all the way down there to see what the water looks like.

    For the DE filter, can I just pop it open? When the pool guy came to do his free inspection he mentioned something about being very careful with opening it and taking out the grids because it can be a huge pain to get them back in.

    To open it, do I just pull on that handle on the side of the filter to release it?
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

  19. Back To Top    #19

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Progress already. Checked the strainer at the pump and sure enough, sight glass and plug for those two holes in the valve.


    Nice! Saved me $10 or so. But for the backwash outlet... does that need to be capped when I'm not using it? From what I can tell they used a discharge hose (can't find) connected to that black flared outlet and used a hose clamp to hold it on (which I found rusting in the strainer basket as well). So will that black flared backwash outlet leak when it is on another setting like Filter or Rinse?


    I figured out how to open the DE filter - thankfully instructions were on the side (although they used 'insure' rather than 'ensure' and I flew into a brief grammar rage). Pics below show what I have to work with.




    What is the pipe at the top with the sock on it? Ok, I know it isn't a sock, but what is it?



    I'm particularly worried about those rusting rods and nuts. But I also have no idea why there is a pile of junk on top. Is that the DE material? The filter sat without the gauge or cap covering that hole on top, so who knows what ended up inside, but I was thankful that there only seemed to be one spider that moved in.
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

  20. Back To Top    #20

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    Re: New (old) house, new (old) pool

    Updates are coming fast and furious. Good news and bad news.

    Good news is I ordered the TF-100 kit. Should be here in a few days.

    Bad news is I looked under the cover on the deep end for the first time and discovered this:





    Yes the water is black, but more concerning is that spot where the vinyl has pulled away from the wall. The water level is nearly to that line and I have to imagine that during a hard rain it goes above it, meaning water has probably gotten behind the liner. So what happens then? What does that do to a pool? Can it be fixed or are we going to have to spend thousands on a new liner?

    Other problem is that I have yet to pull the entire cover off so this could be repeated in other parts of the pool, and could be worse.
    23k - Vinyl IG - FNS 60 DE Filter - PAC-FAB Challenger 1HP Pump

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