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Thread: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

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    JeepGirl's Avatar
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    Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    I now have a (new to me, but 5-6 yr old) 24' AG vinyl pool, 13500 gallons, Hayward pump and sand filter, just set it up within the last couple weeks. I live in a small village with city water, but it has metals in it, and in the past with an 18' easyset pool everytime the shock hit the water, it would turn brown. No exception this time either.

    Last week the pool store suggested I put Revive in it, so I did, then 2 -3 days later I hooked up the pump/filter, vacuumed the little brown shadows out that had pooled at the bottom, which stirred it up a little and made it a touch cloudy, and then I shocked it with a bag of Booster from the pool store suggestion. This was a couple of days ago, then yesterday morning it was mud brown, no green tho. So I treated it with 3/4 bottle of Metal Free yesterday, as suggested by pool store. I also put a couple ounces of Tru Blue clarifier in it. We've had a lot of rain, so I keep emptying the debris from the skimmer basket, and periodically backwash the sand filter, which is pulling brown water out each time.

    Here's the problems. 1) its still brown, but the Metal Free should clear it up, it just is agonizingly slow, from past experience. 2) Yesterday the readings were all good, except that Calcium Hardness was 325, and after a bad t-storm and lots of rain last night running the pump constantly, today it was 550 YIKES! The pool store guy was stumped as to why it jumped from 325 to 550 when the only water added was all the rain!
    Other readings (by the pool store) were:
    TC .2
    FC .2 (so I was told to put a 3" chlorine tab in the skimmer - done.
    pH 7.0 not too bad, just a bit low if norm is 7.2 - 7.6
    TA 100
    Stabilizer 0

    The pool store sold me and recommended for weekly use one 3" chlorine tablet in the skimmer, 3 scoops of EZ Pool, and 1-1/2 caps of Pool Perfect + Phos Free. I have not opened the EZ Pool or Pool Perfect and would consider returning it if I get better advice thru here at TFP. What are your thoughts on this regimen.

    I am at a loss as to what to do next except what I have been so far, and that's keeping the filter/pump running, empty the skimmer basket of debris from the hard rains blowing yick into the pool, and periodically backwashing the brown water out. I also, today, ordered the TF 100 test kit. Should be here next week, so until then, I'll keep taking the water to the pool store to be checked as the test strips they sold me are junk in my opinion.

    Any help will be much appreciated, thank you.
    ~Shell
    JeepGirl
    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    You need to start adding some CYA/stabilizer/conditioner. I suggest aiming for a level of 40 to 50. With CYA around zero you are losing all of your chlorine to sunlight each day.

    EZ Pool contains copper, which I strongly recommend against. Pool Perfect is an enzyme which helps break down oils. It isn't a big problem, but you almost certainly don't need it. Revive and Phos Free are both phosphate removers, which are unnecessary and will tend to cause cloudy water.

    The jump in CH is almost certainly a pool store testing error. You would do a lot better if you had your own top quality test kit. With a good test kit even a novice gets more reliable test results than most pool stores.
    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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    JeepGirl's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Thanks Jason. I will take the EZ Pool and Pool Perfect back to the store. I have leftover from 2007 some PoolLife 3" stablizing chlorine tabs that are a 3-in-1. They worked great on the 18ft easyset pool I had, and kept the water beautifully clear all summer after I got rid of the brown. I just added a tab or so to the floater as needed. I would like to use these tabs up, then switch to TFP's recommendations from that point on.

    As for stabilizer, I was using Sun Tru Blu Super Concentrated Water Clarifier yesterday and today. Should I not have used that?? What kind of CYA/stabilizer/conditioner should I look for? Something I could buy locally maybe to get it in the water and working asap?
    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Jason wrote a good post regarding testing here.

    Check the part about testing for calcium when metals (usually copper or iron) are present to get an accurate calcium reading.

    The sample may turn purple during the test, or go to blue for a moment and then turn back to red/pink. This is called a "fading endpoint" and is caused by interference from metal ions. If this happens, do the test again, but this time add five drops of R-0012 before adding any R-0010 or R-0011L. Remember to count the initial five drops in the total.

    In extreme cases, a fading endpoint may occur even when adding five drops of R-0012 at the start. If that happens, mix pool water with an equal quantity of distilled water, test that, and then multiply the result by two.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Sun Tru Blu Super Concentrated Water Clarifier is harmless, most likely not needed, but not really a problem. In general you only want to add things that you know you need, so we normally recommend against using clarifier. But it won't hurt.

    Look for CYA/stabilizer/conditioner that is 99% or better cyanuric acid. Any pool store will have it, and sometimes the pool departments of big box stores have it, though the big box stores tend to be inconsistent about keeping it in stock.
    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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    JeepGirl's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Ok, I will look for it today. From the house, the water looks lighter brown today, but when I get up on it right beside the pool looking down to the bottom (I can see it again!) it has a greenish tint to it. Need to get my FC back up there. Yesterday it was down to .2, so I put one 3" tab in the skimmer. Me thinks it is gonna need more than that or I'll get algae. Going back to the Pool Calculator to see how much bleach to add as I have a 182 oz bottle of Great Value 6% here. Thanks Jason for your suggestions and help so far, I have hope!!!
    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Be careful putting tablets in the skimmer unless your pump is on 24/7
    Built in 1957 44,000 gallon in-ground, Wet Edge Primera Stone in Sky Blue, Intelliflo VF Pump, 600 lb. Pentair Triton II TR-100 Sand Filter, CircuPool RG 60 Plus SWG, TF-100 test kit
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    JeepGirl's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Thanks Robbie. Yes the pump is on 24/7 right now as I am trying to filter out all the brown water still, and I backwash every day too sucking that out. I am reading in Pool School every day about the recommended chemicals, how to use the BBB, etc and haven't seen yet recommendations for how often to run the pump. I have usually ran it 24/7 in the past, but if I can get on a schedule of running it less this summer to save on energy costs, I would like to. Well, I went out and used one of the test strips I got from the pool store (waiting on my TF 100 to get here still) and the FC appears to be in the 1 - 3 range, somewhere in the middle, so I guess my chlorine is ok, should be able to prevent algae then. I will be going in to town here in a bit and will take another sample to have the pool store check it to be sure, then will adjust accordingly with bleach, if needed. I also need to get CYA stablizer, per Jason, so will get that while I am there and check the pool calculator to see how much to add, and the pool school to see HOW to add it, lol. Love this forum!!! How am I doing? Am I grasping all this ok so far?
    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Your pucks are going to add some CYA, just really slowly. Your FC level is good for 0 CYA, it'll just burn up fast in the sun.
    PS: My play-toy is a highly modified '97 Wrangler
    Built in 1957 44,000 gallon in-ground, Wet Edge Primera Stone in Sky Blue, Intelliflo VF Pump, 600 lb. Pentair Triton II TR-100 Sand Filter, CircuPool RG 60 Plus SWG, TF-100 test kit
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    JeepGirl's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Awesome Robbie, jeeps are so cool . I have a 2000 TJ as my daily driver, we have trailed my 94 YJ (pic below) and are in the process of modifiying a 92 YJ to be the full time trailing jeep. Got a Dana 44 and Dana 60 axles for it, big 35" tires/wheels and will be putting a springover lift on it too. It's gonna be a beast, I tell ya!
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    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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    JeepGirl's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Ok, water is clearing up. Here are my stats as of pool store water test:
    TC 2.9
    FC 2.8
    pH 7.9
    TA 195
    CH 300

    I put in 1/4 of a 1 gallon bottle of muriatic acid mixed with pool water in to reduce the pH and TA. And now Diver Dave is in there cleaning the bottom to Filter (so I don't lose water volume and have to add more metal-laden tap water). I think my levels look really good now, and the water is clearing up. Any thoughts?
    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by JeepGirl
    FC ...Yesterday it was down to .2, so I put one 3" tab in the skimmer. Me thinks it is gonna need more than that or I'll get algae. Going back to the Pool Calculator to see how much bleach to add as I have a 182 oz bottle of Great Value 6% here. Thanks Jason for your suggestions and help so far, I have hope!!!
    When you pickup the Great Value 6% head over to the pool section. Look for either Stabilizer of Conditioner in a cylindrical plastic bottle... It'll be 99% CYA and be about $11.95 for 3 pounds. It's the fast way to get the CYA in the water!

    Oh, and basically do not put things in the water that have "blue" in the label. Check the contents and it's almost always copper... YUK!

    Terry in NC
    Triad Region of NC
    18x37 Vinyl IG (24,000 gal.), BBB & GoldLine AquaLogic PS4 SWG, Hayward 1 HP Superpump / Hayward Sand Filter / Polaris 280 cleaner / 6 deck jets / Sheer Descent Waterfall (in coping) / Brick Red Concrete Coping / Stamped Concrete Deck
    Lots of oak trees, maple trees, *and* leaves!

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    JeepGirl's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Terry, I didn't need to add the bleach because the stats from the pool store water test today said my FC was back up to 2.8, so the 3" tab I put in yesterday brought it back up.

    I went to Walmart today to get some finch food, and while there did go over to the pool section. They sell a lot of HTH products, which I tried in the past with an 18 ft easy set and found it to be junk, but they had the stabilizer and conditioner I think you are referring to. When I looked at the label it said 96% cyanuric acid, 4% other. Is that ok to use?
    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by JeepGirl
    They sell a lot of HTH products, which I tried in the past with an 18 ft easy set and found it to be junk, but they had the stabilizer and conditioner I think you are referring to. When I looked at the label it said 96% cyanuric acid, 4% other. Is that ok to use?
    Yes, the 96% works just fine. There are some posts where you can buy it online, but for getting CYA in the water and not having the sun burning up you chlorine this works great!!

    While I agree for the most part on the HTH comment, when you begin to understand the water and chemicals you'll know what to pickup and what to avoid.

    Terry in NC
    Triad Region of NC
    18x37 Vinyl IG (24,000 gal.), BBB & GoldLine AquaLogic PS4 SWG, Hayward 1 HP Superpump / Hayward Sand Filter / Polaris 280 cleaner / 6 deck jets / Sheer Descent Waterfall (in coping) / Brick Red Concrete Coping / Stamped Concrete Deck
    Lots of oak trees, maple trees, *and* leaves!

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    JeepGirl's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Water is even clearer today, lost the brown color and now it is a transparent light green. I believe the Metal Free is still working on the metals... I plan to brush down the sides, and maybe run Diver Dave in there again. Raining a bit today too.
    New stats from the pool store today, as I am still waiting on my TF 100 test kit, so here are the test results:

    TC 1.8 Pool store min is 1 and max is 3, but pool calc is 4 to 8. Am I missing something?
    FC 1.8 Maybe this will make more sense once I get the TF 100 kit???
    pH 8.2
    TA 190 they suggested I put in 4 oz of muriatic acid, check in 2 hours, then add 4 more if needed
    CH 325
    Stablizer 50 I think this came up because of the PoolLife 3" tab, one put in on Thursday into the skimmer. Was told by the pool store to put 1 tab in every 3 days, do you all agree with that?

    I have PoolLife 3" Multipurpose stablizing chlorine tabs from back in 2007 when I had the easy set 18 ft pool. They worked great that year keeping the water sparkling clear, and I used a hayward pump and sand filter on it. I would really like to use these up since I have them, but not sure when the pool calculator is telling me FC goal should be between 4 and 8, and the pool store says between 1 and 3. Can someone please clarify here? Should I really add bleach or just go ahead and put another tab in tomorrow in the floater as planned?? I've decided that once those tabs are gone, I am strictly going to use the BBB method, using the 6% bleach as learned here at TFP.

    Also, pool calc is telling me to add 21 oz of muriatic acid, which is more than 1 gallon, and the pool store is telling me to add 4 ounces, check in 2 hours, then maybe add 4 more ounces. I'm confused, please help?
    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    The typical pool store FC recommendation is designed for pools without any CYA. Even though the way CYA works was figured out something like 30 years ago, hardly anyone has adjusted their FC recommendations to take into account the fact that CYA lowers the activity of chlorine, so you need to use more chlorine to compensate. With CYA at 50 you will eventually have problems with FC around 2. Raise FC up to where we recommend and you will be trouble free.

    Your PH is too high. You need to get PH down to around 7.5 right away. We have the Pool Calculator to figure out chemical quantities for us, and it is reasonably good at figuring out amounts (though not perfect). Without the Pool Calculator, you need to be much more cautious to not add too much acid at one time. With the Pool Calculator, I suggest you add 2/3rds of what it recommends, let that mix in, and then test again to see where you are.

    Trichlor tablets raise the FC level, raise CYA, and lower PH. If you want all three of those things, great. But your CYA level is already at the high end of our recommended range. So I recommend you stop using trichlor tablets and switch to another form of chlorine that doesn't add CYA. The best choice for many people is to use either bleach or liquid chlorine, which add chlorine without adding anything else you don't want.
    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: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Ok, I don't have a problem using bleach, but the pool calc asks for Now and Target, which I put in 1.8 for Now and 3 for target, as that was the pool store min and max, but the pool calc has a goal of 4 to 8, suggesting 34 oz of 6% bleach. See what I mean? I'm not sure if that is correct or not, I don't want to add too much or not enouch bleach and have a brand new problem. Also, common sense says to wait till I take Diver Dave out to put the acid and bleach in, right?? So I will probably wait till I pull him out, then I will put in 2/3 of the suggested pool calc muriatic acid, per Jason (thank you!), wait half an hour, then put in the bleach, right? All at once just poured around the perimeter of the pool?? Forgive me, still learning....
    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    The pool store doesn't take into account your CYA Pool Calc does.

    You should use the Pool Calc suggestions for your target. It won't steer you wrong.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    What Bama said.............. and, yes, do wait 30 minutes after adding muriatic acid before you add the bleach. Then, add it (bleach) all at one time, but add it slowly in front of a return.
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    JeepGirl's Avatar
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    Re: Spike in CH from yesterday to today, is this a problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    The pool store doesn't take into account your CYA Pool Calc does.

    You should use the Pool Calc suggestions for your target. It won't steer you wrong.
    Bama, the pool store lists stabilizer as 50, isn't that the CYA? And earlier Jason suggested I start out with my CYA between 40 - 50...

    I added 14 oz of MA earlier this evening when I pulled Diver Dave out. Then after I got back from town I added the 34 oz of bleach. Just at 11 pm I went back out and added the other 13 oz for the total pool calc recommendation of 27 oz of MA. So hopefully in the morning, the pH will be down to a more normal #. The pool store is closed on Sundays, so I will have to use my stupid strips to test, which are hard to read and don't correspond to the pool calc goal #'s. Will probably post on here the best I can read it and ask for advice on how to treat tmw.
    I really appreciate all your help, means a lot, thanks
    ~Shell
    24' AG 13,500 gallons
    Hayward pump, sand filter
    Deck yet to be put up...

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