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Thread: New Member - Question (long)

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    New Member - Question (long)

    I have been lurking for the past week or so since I have had my first "poool issue" in the 11 years since it was built. I have done all my openings and closings for the past several years and have had no problems. I was a pool store guy and used pucks in an inline chlorinator without a hiccup - pool was always sparkling and test strip readings always perfect (I know, I know - I bought a "real" kit once this week's problems started).

    Anyway, when I opened my pool, I shocked it (6 gallons 12% liquid), added algaecide (1 qt.), conditioner (1 gallon) and did some vacuuming (Meyco mesh cover). Pool was sparkling clear in a day or two so I tested water - all levels looked fine with strips except for free and total chlorine - looked like 0ppm each. Added more liquid shock (8 bottles) - still no reading. Pool store idiots were clueless. More liquid shock next am - again, reading back to zero within hours.

    Researching here and elsewhere I found extensive information on "breakpoint chlorination" necessary for proper shocking. I bought a K-2005 test kit at my local store (they did not have FAS-DPD K-2006 so I got the best they had on hand). Levels were all generally within normal ranges - Ph 7.5; ALK 80; CYA 60; FC 0; TC 4. Reading here, I bought an ammonia test kit and found 1 ppm ammonia. Next question was how much chlorine to use so that I put enough in to reach breakpoint. I found this article http://www.pested.msu.edu/Resources/bul ... 1chap7.pdf which was VERY helpful in determining exactly how much chlorine to add - apparently I was feeding the fire only to have the new chlorine converted almost immediately. I ended up adding almost 16 gallons of 12% liquid and now my free and total chlorine are very high, but holding for well over 24 hours with almost no loss.

    The test kit I have is obviously having problems with the high chlorine levels and most tests are screwed up because of it - Ph Purple, couldn't get it to change color; ALK green OK couldn't get it to red; CH - pinkish - couldn't get it to blue; CYA about 70 ppm. I tried the Aquachek 6 way strips and they seemed to read everything within their prescribed range except for free and total chlorine which were way high.

    My question: How long do I have to wait for the chlorine to come down to reasonable levels so that I can properly test and adjust other levels? It has been raining a lot here, but the water is crystal clear and it doesn't seem to be dropping the chlorine levels that much.

    Thanks to all who run this board, it is an invaluable resource and truly made my life a lot easier than dealing with the pool store. I am going BBB from now on and no more pucks!!!

    Gerry
    Pool: 25,000 gal.(appx.)/IG/Vinyl/DE
    1.5 HP superpump / Filter Flow Rate - 72gpm (as per spec.)
    Hayward 300,000 BTU natural gas heater / Polaris 380
    Long Island, NY

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    Breakpoint chlorination is a myth. It doesn't work that way. The formula in the paper you reference is misleading at best. You don't need to add the chlorine all at once, and you can't calculate the amount of chlorine you actually need with just the information they use. That isn't a problem at this point, just something to keep in mind for the future.

    With CYA at 70 it takes a while for FC levels to come down. Just how long depends on how high your FC levels actually are, which is difficult to know. You can use the DPD chlorine test in the K-2005 to measure higher FC levels, with less precision, by using dilution. Try mixing the pool water with some chlorine free water at a ration of one part of pool water to three parts of chlorine free water, do the DPD chlorine test, and multiply the result by four. That will give you a rough idea of where you are. Better still you could order a FAS-DPD chlorine test to add on to your existing test kit.
    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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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    Hey Gerry...welcome.


    First things first...post some information about your pool. How big is it...how many gallons, what material is it made with, what kind of pump and filter...All those will be helpful in being able to help solve your problems.

    First of all, you said you were using pucks in an inline chlorinator for the past 6 years. Were those pucks stabilized pucks? If so have you done and partial drains and fills over the course of those six years? If not, I wonder if your CYA is much higher than 60 or 70. The problem with using them for great lengths of time is that CYA builds and builds to the point where you have so much CYA in the pool your chlorine isn't effective. For example say your CYA is at 100 ppm. You would have to bring your pool to a shock level of well over 20ppm. Depending on the size of you pool the 8 gallons you put in may not have reached that level. And to shock at that leve you really need an FAS/DPD kit, which you can get here. When Chlorine levels are so high the regular DPD kits don't always register anything. I would not add more until you get the FAS DPD kit.

    First of all add the pool information and it will allow people to give better advice. Others should be along soon to chime in and add more to what I have said. From my own experience, and everyone else's here Test Strips just are not accurate. I don't want to go there. Good luck and post a new set of numbers so we can start there.
    Beave
    Aqua Leader 24ft Round AG Wil-Bar Influence w/54 inch walls 13,500 gallons
    Swimline J-Blue Opal Liner, 1 4X20 Fafco Solar Bear Solar Heater
    Hayward 2 HP Swim Pro Voyager Pump Micro 150 with 4 way timer
    Swim Pro Voyager Filtration System with Hayward ABS Pearl wide mouth skimmer

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    Where are you located. By the way, it'd be nice if you added the general location to your sig.

    With a CYA level of 70 ppm it will take a little while for the FC to come down. The problem is that with your kit you don't really know how high it is. You should consider supplementing your 2005 with a FAS-DPD chlorine test. Tftestkits has them as a stand alone kit. That essentially makes it a K-2006.

    One thing you can do in the mean time is dilute the pool sample 1 to 1 with chlorine free water and multiply the result by 2. Or use 2 parts chlorine free water and one part pool water and multiply by 3. It's not very accurate but it'll give you a ballpark idea.

    [slow typing got me again.]
    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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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    Where are you located. By the way, it'd be nice if you added the general location to your sig.

    With a CYA level of 70 ppm it will take a little while for the FC to come down. The problem is that with your kit you don't really know how high it is. You should consider supplementing your 2005 with a FAS-DPD chlorine test. Tftestkits has them as a stand alone kit. That essentially makes it a K-2006.

    One thing you can do in the mean time is dilute the pool sample 1 to 1 with chlorine free water and multiply the result by 2. Or use 2 parts chlorine free water and one part pool water and multiply by 3. It's not very accurate but it'll give you a ballpark idea.

    [slow typing got me again.]

    Dave,
    Do you think that after six years of using pucks that Gerry's CYA is really at 70ppm? don't you think it would be higher than that?
    Beave
    Aqua Leader 24ft Round AG Wil-Bar Influence w/54 inch walls 13,500 gallons
    Swimline J-Blue Opal Liner, 1 4X20 Fafco Solar Bear Solar Heater
    Hayward 2 HP Swim Pro Voyager Pump Micro 150 with 4 way timer
    Swim Pro Voyager Filtration System with Hayward ABS Pearl wide mouth skimmer

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    It could be accurate. He could have lost CYA during the winter or by dilution. Also he said he had the K-2005 test kit, so if done properly, the CYA test is as good as we have.

    A full set of test results would be nice though.
    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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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    cubbybeave08, the massive chlorine demand almost certainly means that some of the CYA was lost over the winter.
    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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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    OK. I thought my signature showed my pool details. I'm in New York (LI) and pool was opened about 10 days ago. I never had problems with the pool ever before, and according to the strips, everything was always balanced. I do drain below the inlet jets each fall and by spring, the water level is usually at or above skimmers due to rain/snow. Pucks I used were usually Leslie's brand, and I believe they are stabilized. I did order a FAS-DPD kit, but will also try to do the dilution testing to get a closer reading of where I'm at. I was just wondering how long it should take for FC to get down to a more measurable level (I may have to wait for the arrival of the new kit).

    Water temp is 60 degrees F. Should I just stay in a holding pattern until FC comes down before playing with anything else??

    As for the article, I don't know about the accuracy, but adding the recommended quantity of 12% finally worked to raise and hold FC when my ad hoc attempts at adding shock did not.

    Much thanks for all the assistance and thoughtful replies!!

    Gerry
    Pool: 25,000 gal.(appx.)/IG/Vinyl/DE
    1.5 HP superpump / Filter Flow Rate - 72gpm (as per spec.)
    Hayward 300,000 BTU natural gas heater / Polaris 380
    Long Island, NY

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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    Oh, another question. At what point will it be safe for the kids to swim - assuming I'm willing to pay for the gas bill to run it all weekend!

    Thanks again.

    Gerry
    Pool: 25,000 gal.(appx.)/IG/Vinyl/DE
    1.5 HP superpump / Filter Flow Rate - 72gpm (as per spec.)
    Hayward 300,000 BTU natural gas heater / Polaris 380
    Long Island, NY

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    With CYA at 70, swimming is alright up to an FC level of about 20.

    If you are in a huge hurry you could use a chlorine neutralizer, but otherwise just wait for the FC level to come down to something more reasonable.
    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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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    OK. Finally got my FAS-DPD kit and have been testing each day for the past week. pH, TA, CYA, CH all within recommended levels. FC is 8 with no CC. Chlorine has dropped less than 1ppm each day since I began testing and has been holding relatively steady because of cloudy days and rain. Water is crystal clear and sparkling. Now, I want to start BBB instead of the pucks, which I believe were at the root of my problem. Do I just start adding bleach, borax and baking soda as needed from here on out? Do nothing with my in line chlorine feeder? Just trying to figure out where I go from here since I am a decade + pool store guy.

    Much thanks!!

    Gerry
    Pool: 25,000 gal.(appx.)/IG/Vinyl/DE
    1.5 HP superpump / Filter Flow Rate - 72gpm (as per spec.)
    Hayward 300,000 BTU natural gas heater / Polaris 380
    Long Island, NY

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Member - Question (long)

    Yep, most of what you need to do is test and adjust FC with bleach daily, and keep an eye on PH and adjust as needed. TA and CH can be checked weekly, and CYA checked every month or two.
    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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