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Thread: Spots starting to form

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    maxepr1's Avatar
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    Spots starting to form

    Switched to the BBB method about a month ago couldn't be happier! Today I noticed brownish green spots starting to form in the radius's of the steps and the swim-up seats! Have been doing overnight tests and haven't dropped anymore than .5 so I haven't seen the need to shock. But now there is obiviously algae growing! Now I know the test kit (Taylor) is junk! Just ordered TF-100. I guess the question I have is the POOL CALCULATOR the four box's for suggested FC has SWG 5 Normal 8-13 Shock 25 and Mustard Algae 54. I've been running around 6 with CYA 100, do I shock to 25 or 54? And should I follow SWG or Normal FC levels? And how do I tell mustard Algae from plain old algae?
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Hey. I'll shoot in my two cents without directly answering any of your questions.

    Please consider lowering you CYA down to around 60ppm or perhaps a little higher. Everything becomes easier.

    When you look at the charts, the FC can stay in a 5-7 range and shock value does not require a tractor trailer load of chlorine. Even if you have to pay a pretty good price for the impending partial drain and refill, I don't think you would ever regret lowering you CYA.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh
    Hey. I'll shoot in my two cents without directly answering any of your questions.

    Please consider lowering you CYA down to around 60ppm or perhaps a little higher. Everything becomes easier.

    When you look at the charts, the FC can stay in a 5-7 range and shock value does not require a tractor trailer load of chlorine. Even if you have to pay a pretty good price for the impending partial drain and refill, I don't think you would ever regret lowering you CYA.
    Duraleigh, even if I lower to 70 there isn't that much of a difference in the shock value(25 to 20) the Mustard shock is much different though.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Your call, but I can promise you an easier life if you reduce your CYA

    EDIT: Pool water chemistry is not precisely black and white. Your pool does not catch on fire if you violate the chart by a few ppm. Nor will your pool always do exactly as you expect simply by plugging in numbers from a chart. The key to what we teach is the understanding of the test results so you can learn how to manipulate/manage your chemistry for a good result.

    Not from a chart, but from reports of thousands of members on this and other forums, a CYA of 100 is problematic.....doable, yes, but very troublesome.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    I'll consider but right now thats not the problem. Just trying to clean the spots.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Lowering CYA will make it easier.

    It's not take it to shock level once - it's keeping it there for days until the stuff is all gone. And that could take truckloads of bleach with CYA at 100!
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Nobody has answered the original question. What am I shocking to, shock level or Mustard Algae per the calculator?
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    not trying to pile on, how confident are you that your CYA is exactly 100 vice higher since the test stops at 100? It will greatly affect your shock level.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Wil find out when I get my TF100 test kit. Tested at the pool store, with computer. Lamotte tester. I can bet this test will be exactly them. So you can all pile on now! Question still out there unanswered!
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Your question is unanswered because you have not given enough information. Are you sure it is mustard algae? If so, then 54 min FC and above is your answer.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    I guess the question I have is the POOL CALCULATOR the four box's for suggested FC has SWG 5 Normal 8-13 Shock 25 and Mustard Algae 54. I've been running around 6 with CYA 100, do I shock to 25 or 54? And should I follow SWG or Normal FC levels? And how do I tell mustard Algae from plain old algae?
    Here's the quote with the questions still open!
    What information am I missing??
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Mustard algae will be sorta mustard colored - not cheap yellow mustard, but leaning towards grey poupon. And it won't necessarily grow in a nice patch.

    Can you take a picture of it and post it? The wizards here can probably ID it that way.

    The other way to tell is to run the pool up to 25 ppm FC for a couple days - not just one big dump and forget it - and see if it starts shrinking. Mustard algae will laugh at 25 ppm.

    Frequent brushing while at shock level will also speed up the killing. Algae grows a slimy skin to protect itself, almost like a scab, that you need to brush away if you want to get in there and kill it.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
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    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: Spots starting to form

    Now were getting somewhere!! Thanks Richard! Spots definetly are not mustard algae! Dark in color like green/gray. Small no bigger than pencil eraser.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Quote Originally Posted by maxepr1
    Now I know the test kit (Taylor) is junk! Just ordered TF-100.
    If your kit is a Taylor K-2006, it's not junk. If it's a Taylor kit with a DPD test, then yes that is not as accurate as a FAS-DPD test that is in the Taylor K-2006 and in the TFTestkits TF-100.

    Quote Originally Posted by maxepr1
    I've been running around 6 with CYA 100 ...
    Since you have an SWG, a target of 6 ppm FC with 100 ppm CYA would normally be OK, but the error in the CYA test goes up as you get to higher CYA levels and your circulation in the pool might be uneven. Also, I'm not so sure I trust these CYA or other readings given previous posts (see below).

    Quote Originally Posted by maxepr1
    I do use maintenance dosing once a week but I havent had a phoshate reading above 100 since (4 years now)!
    You wrote that in your March 23rd post. If your phosphate level is still 100 ppb, then how do you account for having algae now unless the low phosphate reading is either wrong or you've got lots of organic phosphates in the water (i.e. phosphates don't really matter that much and removing them does not ensure complete prevention of algae). In this post and this post in that same thread you note that your FC was 3 ppm with a CYA of 90 ppm which would be too low an FC for that CYA level so nascent algae growth should slowly start. Later on that same thread two days later in this post you note a CYA of 20 ppm which doesn't make any sense unless you did a huge water dilution. Then you added more CYA and overshot to get to 100 ppm, but maybe it's really higher, more like 200 ppm now. So given the wild variation in CYA values, I'm not so sure I trust it. I'm sorry nobody caught the huge CYA drop you reported in that thread and question you about it at that time.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Wow, your right I just went back and looked that should have been a 9 not a 2! My bad! Only added a couple of pounds. Haven't been adding any phospate treatments since I started BBB. By the way my Phosphates are now 2500! And the spots are showing up. The test kit is a Taylor DPD. Not getting the TF100 until next week. I'm running much higher FC now under the BBB method (6) as when I reported in March at 3 I was just starting. But according to the Calculator I should be at 5. But when I get my test kit I will report my findings and start to bring it to shock levels and try to kill off what I got. But with my test kit now, overnight test don't drop more than .5. So why do I have Algae? Is the test kit bad or is there another problem?
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Do you add metal sequestrants regularly? Or do you live near crops or fields or have a lot of blown in fertilized soil? The phosphate level shouldn't climb that high that fast, not that it matters much, but it's strange nevertheless. This is especially strange if you had any extra phosphate remover left in the pool as is usually the case when using a regular maintenance dose for such products. You only switched to BBB one month ago.

    As for the algae, it sounds like that's in an area of poor circulation. The FC of 5 ppm with a CYA of 100 ppm is a minimum and assumes reasonable circulation throughout the pool. You might try taking a sample near the places where you see algae since it might be low there. Also, measure the FC in the late afternoon since your SWG might not be keeping up during the day but then making up for it later on -- again, the minimum FC has to be maintained consistently everywhere.

    2 pounds of CYA in 29,000 gallons would only be 8 ppm so probably got you from 90 ppm to 100 ppm which is what you are now measuring. So at least that's consistent.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    No,I dont live anywhere were there would be blown in fertilizer. They only thing I put in the pool is MA, baking soda, phosphate remover. Now since BBB method MA, bleach(3 gallons this year) Stabilizer(2-3pounds). Thats it. I am running the SWG the lowest I ever have and only 6 hours and the pool looks great! I've lowered the percentage to 35% which keeps me at around 6. Can't wait to put Borates in! Since I got the dosing pump up and running I don't pour MA directly into the pool! How would I check for poor circulation?
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Quote Originally Posted by maxepr1
    How would I check for poor circulation?
    Carefully take a water sample in the area near the algae. If it's not at the surface, turn the sample tube upside down until you get close to the algae but do so slowly so as not to mix up the water too much. Then measure the chlorine level in that sample. Alternately, you can use a clean pipette or turkey baster or tube with your finger over one end to get water for a sample.

    There are dyes you can use to check circulation, but really what we're looking for is whether the algae is getting exposed to sufficiently high chlorine levels. Of course, such testing needs to be done before you start shocking the pool and you don't want to wait too long for that.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Chem Geek, I will do that a soon as I get the tester. I'll try to post some pic's. The spots are so few though and small it my be hard to capture.
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    Re: Spots starting to form

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    In this post and this post in that same thread you note that your FC was 3 ppm with a CYA of 90 ppm which would be too low an FC for that CYA level so nascent algae growth should slowly start. Later on that same thread two days later in this post you note a CYA of 20 ppm which doesn't make any sense unless you did a huge water dilution. Then you added more CYA and overshot to get to 100 ppm, but maybe it's really higher, more like 200 ppm now. So given the wild variation in CYA values, I'm not so sure I trust it. I'm sorry nobody caught the huge CYA drop you reported in that thread and question you about it at that time.
    Hate to say this, but I did bring that issue up in the same thread

    Quote Originally Posted by dmanb2b
    Max,

    Before you add any more CYA, please do try to double check that CYA test result. Having CYA come down to 20 from the previous reading of 90 would indicate you replaced 70-80% of your pool water with zero CYA water, which I'm guessing is not the case

    I say this, because I would hate to see you adding more CYA to your water, if the previous reading of 90 was in fact valid
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