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Thread: My first first reading post

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    My first first reading post

    I hate to make one of these, but I'm trying to do the pool testing right this year (our second) instead of just relying on the test strips.

    I received my TF-100 along with the Salt kit and the stirrer (which so far is well worth it) and started testing.

    Here is what I have so far

    FC - 5
    CC - 1
    TC - 6
    pH - 7.8 (Unable to clearly tell - I can't distinguish colors)
    TA - 100/110
    CH - 140/150
    CYA - 0
    Salt - 4200ppm

    We just opened the pool last week and the water was basically crystal clear still. Had the SWG running 12 hours a day since and of course have been basing things off the test strips, which showed most things as fine (honestly, if chlorine turned purple on the strips we considered the pool fine).

    So, I basically have no idea how to balance this pool or where it should even be at

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: My first first reading post

    Hi, glad you stopped by! Did you try holding a piece of white paper behind the block to read the pH? If the result is orange it is around 7.5, if the result is more pink or purple the pH is 7.8 or higher, if the result is more yellow it is 7.2 or lower.

    You need some CYA in the water, and you need to go through the shock process since you have CC of 1. Raise the CYA to 30 ppm while you are completing the shock process and when that is completed raise the CYA to 60.
    TFP Moderator
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: My first first reading post

    What Zea said, but with an addition: Don't try to shock with your SWG. It can't do it, you'll just burn out the electrodes. Go buy some bleach. Once it's all clear and balanced, if the SWG is set right, you won't need to shock again for the rest of the season.

    For the pH test, I found it works best to hold it out at arm's length with something white behind it, like a white plastic patio chair. Then squint a little. If you aren't colorblind, soon you'll be able to tell which reading it's closest to, if it's between numbers.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
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    Re: My first first reading post

    Unfortunately I can barely tell a difference between the 7.5 and 7.8 colors. It was rather late in the day so I will try again tomorrow with more sun. Oddly enough I just pulled the thing out and held it up to the light in the living room and the difference is so much easier to see in here... not sure if the bright white fluorescents help the clarity. Trying to see the color difference between the yellows is even worse, but I think the test from the big kit replaces this?

    Is there a ratio for bleach to add for the cya? I know when the thing was completely full the dot was just barely starting to get cloudy, so it has a ways to go.

    I didn't add any new salt since last year since the SWG never complained and the manual for the SWG says to aim for 3000ppm so I have no idea if being that high is good or bad.

    Basing things on the SWG balance thread with these numbers

    FC 3-5 ppm
    PH 7.5-7.8
    TA 60-80
    CH

    50-300 for vinyl
    220-320 for fiberglass
    250-350 for plaster

    CYA 70-80
    Salt 200-400 ppm ABOVE recommended optimum level
    Borates 30-50 ppm (optional)

    TA is too high and CYA way too low and salt I'm guessing way high and borates... not even that far.

    Ignorance really was bliss before today

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: My first first reading post

    Don't fret too much about your numbers. You'll get comfortable the more you do it.

    Don't worry about whether the pH is 7.5 or 7.8 both are fine.
    Add enough CYA to get to 70 ppm and then you should eb able to turn your swcg down a bit or reduce your run time.
    Don't worry too much about the TA. As you adjust your pH down when it rises, your TA will come down. At some point it'll reach equalibrium.
    Borates are purely optional and I wouldn't worry about that until you're comfortable with everything else.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: My first first reading post

    With the SWG it is either on or off, no adjustments since it is just the intex unit. Currently we run that and the pump 12 hours a day.

    According to the pool calculator is says add 484oz of liquid stabilizer - is that what the bleach is going to be or does it have to be actual pool store stabilizer?

    Thank goodness the cicadas should soon be gone at least... having to clean hundreds out of the pool each day is surely not helping the water. It needs vacuuming daily.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: My first first reading post

    To raise CYA use granular stabilizer/conditioner/cyanuric acid. It is significantly less expensive. You can only get this at a pool store or the pool departments of some big box stores.

    The Intex SWG has a timer that lets you set a run time on the SWG that is different from the run time on the pump.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: My first first reading post

    Stabilizer is CYA (cyanuric acid). There exists a liquid form and a powder form. Liquid dissolves faster and costs lots more. Powder is cheaper and takes longer to dissolve, up to a week sometiimes.

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    Re: My first first reading post

    Was just about to edit the post after clicking on CYA on the calculator and seeing that. Opps. Will check the pool sections at Lowes and HD since I recall seeing that name.

    I might have missed it, but what calculation is used for reducing the CC level?

    On the calc is says suggested FC for a SWG is only 1 and shock level of 10 so it says add 207oz of bleach?

    Edit: Got the CYA and bleach. Since it is recommended to use the sock for the CYA and I have to put in a ton... are there other options like multiple socks floating around or using those chlorine floaters with the granules in it?

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    Re: My first first reading post

    The CC level is reduced by the shocking process. I'm assuming the below:

    You know how many gallons your pool holds.
    You are going on the above advice and planning to raise CYA to 30. (to be brought to 60-70 after you pass the drop test)
    You are planning to raise the FC level by adding bleach to the number recommended in the calculator for your pool size based on a CYA level of 30.

    CC will fall by maintaining the shock level until you start getting steady FC numbers with a CC below .5. Then follow the instructions for performing the overnight drop test to determine that your pool is really free of organics.

    I have two returns. I put ~3.5 pounds in two socks and hung it in front of the return. Doesn't take to long to dissolve out of the sock, so you can reload if needed. Just remember that you are going to have to go based on calculated CYA numbers for several days since it won't show up on the test immediately. (That's why the calculations are important at this point)

    Clear as mud?
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    Re: My first first reading post

    Okay, got my homey the clown sock with 5lb in front of the return (both of ours are stacked so I can only use one).

    I guess it was a good thing I didn't dump all the chlorine and the stabilizer at once like previously.

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    Re: My first first reading post

    Not quite a week, but decided to test things before cleaning the pool.

    Here is what things are at now with half the bleach and half the stabilizer added.

    FC - 13
    CC - 0
    Ph - 7.8
    TA - 110
    Ch - 200
    CYA - 20-25
    Salt - 3800

    Since it hasn't been the week for the stabilizer should I just keep waiting for the levels to rise or start work on some other level?

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    Re: My first first reading post

    How large is your pool?

    How much CYA have you added?

    What did you calculate the dosage would yield for you (what ppm of CYA)?
    Dave S.
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    Re: My first first reading post

    30' round and I'm going off 20,000 gallons since it isn't quite full

    I have added 5lb so far based on what was recommended above about reaching 30 first and that was on Saturday.

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