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Thread: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

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    JulieLeo's Avatar
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    New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Hello all - Julie and Leo here in Atlanta. Not really hot here yet...but we're hoping it gets hot soon because we're excited to start swimming....even if it is a little dinky 12' pool. Who would guess we're having the most difficult time just figuring out what to do next now that the water is in the pool. This website is great!! We have a test kit and took a sample and nothing registered! We looked at each other and said - What's next! Looks like we need to take back all the pool chemical products and hit the grocery store for BBB! Be looking for lots of questions from us -- we have no clue what we're doing!!!
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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    kenmar's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Have you read Pool School yet?
    pool-school/
    20'x40' / 30,000 Gal / In Ground / Vinyl
    Pentair FNS 48 DE Filter / Pentair Challenger 1.5 HP Pump
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    crookm11's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Welcome to TFP!

    I would suggest you read pool school. the link is in the upper right hand corner of this site and in my signature. Also feel free to ask any questions you may have.

    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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    Mod Squad woodyp's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    I'd get some liquid FC in there pretty quick. Welcome aboard.
    16x32x52" Steel Cornelius Miramar AGP Vinyl liner 13,100 gal. Buried 2 ft.
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    JulieLeo's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Thanks everyone for the warm welcome. Well, Leo and I have been to Pool School, but it's not easy to remember all the details so we're studying it as we go. We've had water in the pool for about 3 days and I was anxious to get the water treated. Tonight we used the Pool Calculator and this is what we added: 8pm - 2 oz liquid chlorine bleach, 8:30 - 4 oz liquid chlorine bleach. 9:30 - tested and the CH was perfect but no pH (6.8) so we added 10 oz soda ash. Tested with test strip and the CYA was low so we added 2 oz of dichlor (disolved in pool water.) Will let the pump run all night. Heard it's supposed to rain tonight which I guess will screw up the readings, then we start again, correct?

    One question I have is on the test kit container the CL ideal readings don't seem to register in ppm's, or am I not understanding what I'm looking at? The test kit plastic containter reads CL ideal as 1.0-1.5. , and pH ideal is 7.6. Is that in ppm's?

    Maybe this question sounds crazy but like I said I'm not sure what I'm doing at this point.

    Thanks
    Julie
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    PH is in it's own units.

    CL is in ppm, we just disagree with it about what "ideal" is. Levels around 1.0-1.5 are ideal when you don't have any CYA at all. In an outdoor pool you need to have CYA and so need to have higher chlorine levels.
    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

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    JulieLeo's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Hi - -

    Thanks for the reply.

    I've been running the pump run 24/7. Is that what I need to be doing? Today the CL was right at 1.5 and the pH was at 7.2. Used the pool calculator and added 5 oz of soda ash. Plan on adding about 2.2 oz of dichlor in about an hour or 2. The only way I can check stabilizer is with test strips right now. My test kit doesn't check the CYA. Do I need to get more of the test strips or get a better test kit at Walmart that tests for CYA.

    Why do the quick set up instructions with the pool only mention using 'small pool sanitizer', 1" chlorine tabs, algaecide, and Shock Plus. Looks like there's a lot more to it.

    At this point the readings for the pH and the stabilizer still aren't at the ideal point yet....is that ok for day 2 of day 4 of the maintenance plan?

    Thanks for answering my questions. I'm still not sure the right things to do are but very glad I found your website!!
    Julie



    Also, do I need to be using the 1" clorinating tabs yet? Thanks.
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    There are different ways to take care of a swimming pool. Our approach requires just a little extra work up front, and saves you lots of problems later on. If you haven't already, take a look at the Beginners Guide for Seasonal/Temporary Pools.

    Taking a few days to get everything balanced is normal. Don't worry about it.
    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

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    JulieLeo's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Hi -

    My current test kit does not measure CYA, only CL BR & pH. I have the Aqua - Chek 6-way strips. Just wondering if a more expensive test kit is over-kill for my size pool? Not sure I need a $50 - 100 commercial pool test kit and wondering if the strips are accurate enough for my needs.

    Last night test on day 3 of 4 day start up process: FC 8-10, pH - 6.8 AL - Strip test - OK, Stabilizer - LOW.

    Thanks,
    Julie
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    It depends on how willing you are to dump out all the water and start over. Without a good test kit, when you run into a complex problem the only real solution is to dump the water and start over.

    Your test strips do measure CYA, they just call it Stabilizer. Test strips aren not especially reliable, and they are particularly bad at measuring CYA levels.

    From your test results, you need to raise the PH. You want PH between 7.2 and 7.8.
    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

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    While I would recommend the TF-50, If that's too much for you, you could try and find the HTH 6-way kit (not strips) and use that. It's a pretty good kit for very small pools. Some Walmarts have them as well as Kmart and a few other places.
    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: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Hi -

    I am not at all about dumping water at all! I will find a HTH test kit and see how that works for me. If I'm not satisfied, then I will go for the best kit.

    This is day 4 of the start-up process. With my CL so high already, what do I need to do tomorrow if the pH isn't up to where it needs to be?

    Still haven't gotten my water bill from the 2100 gal. that just filled up the pool, so I'm pacing myself on expenses!

    Will keep posting with test results.

    Thanks so much for all the help!

    Julie
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    You will want to keep in mind that the appropriate cya (stabilizer) reading wont show for several days because it takes so long to dissolve.
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    JulieLeo's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Ok -- got another question. So not sure I read this correctly in the pool school but the 1" chlorine tablets that came with the small pool start up kit. Basically, don't use these correct? Just use bleach as necessary based on daily test readings?
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    The 1" chlorine tablets are going to be trichlor. For normal day to day chlorine it is better to use bleach/liquid chlorine, The tablets are handy in certain situations, like when you are going to be away for a couple of days, so I wouldn't throw them away or anything.
    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

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    JulieLeo's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Ok - my Summer Escapes pool came with a skimmer filter. Is that a good enough system to keep my pool clean or do I need to look for a better filter system?
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    There certainly are better filters, and having the best possible filter is really nice, but you can get by with that one.
    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

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    JulieLeo's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    Could you suggest a step up filter for the size pool I have?
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    It depends a lot on how much money you want to spend. The next step up would probably be something like the Intex Sand Filter. Your next one after that would be something like a small Hayward Pro series combo filter and pump.
    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

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    JulieLeo's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool owner - and completely clueless!!!

    So Monday was our 4th night on the water treatment of BBB. For the last two nights the CL and the pH have been perfect. I haven't added anything to the water. Is that normal? Our weather has been very very cool and cloudy so I can understand why the CL reading hasn't changed....would the pH be stable too? Lots to learn still!!
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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