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Thread: Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help me!!

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    Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help me!!

    11 x 22 1/2 feet
    Shallow end : 3 feet
    Deep end: 6 feet
    8300 gallons
    In Ground, Plaster/Tile

    Filter is a 24" x 31" High Rate Sand Filter by Astral Pool
    4 jets, 2 traps, vacuum, and one drain in the bottom of the pool.

    The Filter guage registers 0-3 (it's a spanish filter), right now, its sitting at a whopping ZERO. normally it's between 0- 0.3 on the 0 -3 scale. It's not even registering in the green zone on the guage. Been backwashing the pool probably more than necessary for 2.5 minutes a time, once every day/ every other day, considering the amount of debris and muck in the pool.

    The jets blow out, but the suction is lacking to say the least on the vacuum hose, and I'm pretty sure on the traps and drain as well.

    Chlorine is at 3
    pH is at 0 or low. my tester only reads from 6-8, and the chemical you mix with the water isn't even changing color at all other than (since the chemical is red) making the water yellow. It's supposed to be reading gradients of orange to red. I have never seen it change color at all. At the moment I can only check Chlorine and pH levels with my water test.

    Algae is all dead, finally killed after our fiasco about 3 weeks ago. Water still foggy usually, save for the day in between when I sweep the pool, and then it's actually quite clear. Lots of dead algae/sand/debris on the bottom that I just can't get rid of, which for a day sometimes two afterward, the water is foggy/mirky.


    Okay.. this one comes with a story so hold on for the ride.

    My husband and I just moved to the South West coast of Spain where we are renting a house that is most definitely older. We have our very first pool ever, and in our rental contract we stated that we wanted a gardner and a pool cleaner to come and maintain our yard and pool, since he and I are pretty much idiots at this current time with dealing with the new climate, new plants, new pool etc.

    So our rental agency sends us our gardner, who, if he's lucky, might have two brain cells to rub together. We have him on for wayyy too long, much longer than we should have, and in the process, my entire yard has almost died so we have a lot of problems with people tracking dirt and mud into the pool since the grass is close to non existant, and the pool turned a lovely shade of peuse green because our "experienced gardner/poolboy" was only throwing clorine in it, skimming the top, and leaving. You could not even see more than 6 inches into the pool. it was awful.

    So my husband and I jumped in (not into the pool of course but into pool care) with no idea what to do other than figure it out as we go. for the past two months we have been fighting to get the pool back into swimming condition, and have managed to get the pool really close. the water is back to being kinda clear, we can actually see the tiles in the pool now and if I haven't just swept the bottom and sides of the pool, you can actually see the tile all the way to the bottom in the deep end as well.

    Since our gardner/poolboy fiasco, there is a ton of debris at the bottom of the pool that I just can't seem to get rid of. I've used the net to scrape up the stuff that I know I don't want going into my drains or robot, but it leaves behind the small stuff that just doesn't go away. So I sweep the pool regularly, trying to stir it up to get it to go through something.. somewhere, anywhere but the bottom of my pool, but all it does is stir up everywhere and fog the water, and then settle right back down in a horrid mess that is honestly making me want to drain the pool and use it for skateboarding. or blow it up, which ever.

    So basically, What should my guage on my filter be reading to make the filter actually suck things up with proficiency?

    I know I need a better pool water tester (its on the list) and borax or some other pH raising chemical, what else should I be looking to get to keep the cloudy, dirty stuff from coming back? (or to just go away already)

    And for the sake of God, how do I get the debris out of my pool that the filter or drains just ignores?

    (by the way, we do have a new pool guy coming, but we're in spain.. everyone runs late. he was supposed to be here yesterday and I still haven't seen him, so I'm trying to figure this out on my own just in case we end up with another complete idiot.)

    Sorry for the novel, please help if you can.
    11 x 22 1/2 feet IG pool, 8300 gallons, Plaster/Tile
    Filter is a 24" x 31" High Rate Sand Filter by Astral Pool (apparently with a broken guage)
    4 jets, 2 traps, (cheap annoying) vacuum, and one drain in the bottom of the pool.

  2. Back To Top    #2
    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    SWSuburban Chicago, IL
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    11,965

    Re: Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help

    Hi and welcome...

    to measure the depth of your pool, take your pole and measure it and then use it to reach the bottom of the deep end and that way you can gauge by the pole's length how deep the deepend is. Then use the bottom of the Pool Calculator and enter your measurements. We can help you once you know the depth of the deepend. Did you measure the width/length or are you just guessing? You really do need to get close on the size estimate in order to properly dose the pool.

    If your PH is not registering, that is a problem that must be fixed first and soon. Low PH is probably the worst thing that you can do to a pool because the damage it causes can be permanent.

    I would suggest the internet and ordering things for delivery if you can, like the necessary pool chems in case you can't find the grocery store versions locally.

    There have been other threads with similar issues - re: finding the testing supplies/chems in Europe, etc. If you use the "google search" feature at the bottom left of the screen you can find those threads and hopefully find helpful information in them.

    Now on the filter pressure - I suspect you may have a blockage or a bad gauge. Do you know where there is a return/jet where the water re-enters the pool? If you put your hand to it, how does the pressure feel? Have you ever backwashed it? Can you possibly take some pics of your pool/equipment and post them? Use photobucket.com and upload the pics there. Then copy and paste the IMG code into your message here, and the pics will appear. This will help us determine if your valves etc are all in the correct position and identify any possible problems with the equipment.

    While you think you have enough chlorine you probably don't - but you need to get the best kit you can find over there as soon as possible. Here is a recent thread on that subject:

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/tf100...en-t23360.html

    So post back if you need clarification on anything and we will do our very best to assist you!
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help

    I'll snap you a few pics in just a few, and once I can find my measuring tape I'll get a more accurate reading of the pool. I know where two or more pool places are here, it's just the process of actually getting to them, and I don't have very fond memories of ordering online to this address (don't ask lol, let's just say Christmas really sucked this year). By the way I edited my post sometime while you added yours, so there might be something helpful there in my edit. But I'll most definitely snap some pictures since they speak a lot more clearly than I probably do about the issue. Thanks for responding, I will definitely update.

    Just wanted to post back as quick as I could to let you know I'm definitely listening and thankful for any advise anyone may have. Thanks for the fast response.
    11 x 22 1/2 feet IG pool, 8300 gallons, Plaster/Tile
    Filter is a 24" x 31" High Rate Sand Filter by Astral Pool (apparently with a broken guage)
    4 jets, 2 traps, (cheap annoying) vacuum, and one drain in the bottom of the pool.

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Re: Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help

    Okay here we go. Had to resize and upload the pics to my personal webspace..

    Pool Dimensions:

    11 x 22 1/2 feet
    Shallow end : 3 feet
    Deep end: 6 feet
    8300 gallons

    (told ya it was small)


    Full pool, traps and drain on the left side, jets all on the right and on the stairs.


    jet on the stairs.


    jets (3) on the wall (shallow end)


    My first problem.


    My second problem.


    My filter set up.


    More of my problem.


    My Vacuum


    My pool again.


    Chlorine and products


    The 4 in 1 stuff my husband started putting in a few days ago.


    my crappy testing kit.
    11 x 22 1/2 feet IG pool, 8300 gallons, Plaster/Tile
    Filter is a 24" x 31" High Rate Sand Filter by Astral Pool (apparently with a broken guage)
    4 jets, 2 traps, (cheap annoying) vacuum, and one drain in the bottom of the pool.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help

    Oh and I did what you asked and put my hand on the pipes running to and from the filter. There was some vibration so I had to concentrate, but the water is coming in decently well from the two pool traps and the drain, but it didn't feel like it was coming as well from the vaccum. water was going back into the pool with ease though, but as I said the pressure from the jets has never been a problem.

    That picture of my filter guage, that's with the pump ON and running, and all of the drain pipes wide open. I've never once seen it go into the green, and I have no idea when the last time this pump was maintenanced. We've only been living here for 8 months and thought that the gardner was on top of this... least until our pool turned green and this whole endeavor started.
    11 x 22 1/2 feet IG pool, 8300 gallons, Plaster/Tile
    Filter is a 24" x 31" High Rate Sand Filter by Astral Pool (apparently with a broken guage)
    4 jets, 2 traps, (cheap annoying) vacuum, and one drain in the bottom of the pool.

  6. Back To Top    #6
    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Silver Spring, MD
    Posts
    37,879

    Re: Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help

    Those gauges break fairly easily, it might simply be broken. The other possibility is that you have the multi-port valve set to circulate instead of filter.

    You appear to only have a simple TC and PH test kit. You should do both tests and tell us what results you get.
    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: Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help

    I'll check on that filter thing.

    I've done the water test for a week now, and the Chlorine is always a little over 3, and the pH doesn't even register. The color comes out a yellow, not even close the the orange/red readings i'm supposed to get.

    I'll check on the guage as well, Of course the other day it was reading out at around 6 psi, and then I backwashed it and it went back to 0 and hasn't come back up since.
    11 x 22 1/2 feet IG pool, 8300 gallons, Plaster/Tile
    Filter is a 24" x 31" High Rate Sand Filter by Astral Pool (apparently with a broken guage)
    4 jets, 2 traps, (cheap annoying) vacuum, and one drain in the bottom of the pool.

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Re: Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help

    Oh and you can see that I have a sliding valve in the picture and yes, I always have it set to Filter, not recirculate. I thought I did but I had to make sure before I said this.
    11 x 22 1/2 feet IG pool, 8300 gallons, Plaster/Tile
    Filter is a 24" x 31" High Rate Sand Filter by Astral Pool (apparently with a broken guage)
    4 jets, 2 traps, (cheap annoying) vacuum, and one drain in the bottom of the pool.

  9. Back To Top    #9
    adoptolderkids's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    139

    Re: Brand New to pools, OLD pool, Totally lost. please help

    I had issues with the pressure gauge on my filter when starting - it would always read 16, even when off! My guess would be if that yours is continually reading 0, even when in operation, then it needs to be replaced. Our pool store had them in stock - cost me around $7, I think. That and a buck for the tape. Very easy fix!
    Holly
    12K gal above-ground, sand filter in Rochester, NY

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