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Thread: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

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    New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Hi everyone, I'm just getting started with my new concrete pool. After a horrible experience with my pool builder (his payment terms left little incentive to finish the job), I finally have a plastered pool that is full of water. It was plastered on Friday (using 3M quartz finish) and filled on Saturday morning. It's now Monday night and nothing has been done since because my PB hasn't provided us with any equipment or sent the service company over to start the equipment. The service company is scheduled to come tomorrow morning. I'm sure we can get the chemistry in line, but my concern is with the plaster. I've read so many things about how important it is to start brushing the plaster right away, I'm looking for some input on what the impact of not brushing at all in the first three days might be. From what I've felt with my hand, the quartz finish seems a little more abrasive than we expected and I'm wondering if that will get smoother with brushing. Is not brushing right away going to make that any more difficult? I'm not panicking at this point and even though it's frustrating that we picked such a lousy PB who does no project management, I think it will probably be OK. I would just like to hear that from someone who actually knows something and doesn't have a vested interest.

    One other item to note is that we filled 10-20% of the pool with our well and the rest with a service. The metals in my water and the chlorine in theirs left us with a nice shade of green water. I don't think this is a big deal, but wanted to include it in the information to be complete. I can't provide any chemistry readings because I don't have any, yet.

    Thanks and I'm sure you'll be hearing more from me in the coming months.

    Tom
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    If you have metals in the water you should have been told to add sequestrant right off. If you haven't added any yet you should try to contact the PB or service and ask them what to do. In absense of direction I'd add a startup dose anyway
    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
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Welcome to TFP!

    Metal stains in the first few days can become embedded in the plaster and be impossible to remove, so I would certainly add some sequestrant.

    Brushing twice a day would be a great idea. If you have a quartz surface they will probably be doing an acid wash at some point, which means brushing isn't quite as critical but it still helps.

    The pool can go a couple of days without any attention, but if they don't get around to doing something soon you are going to need to get the pool going yourself if you can. The National Plasterers Council Startup Card is a great resource for new plaster startups.

    Have you ordered a test kit? The builder will often give you something basic, but it is really nice to have a top quality test kit, as it can help you avoid problems. Another thing to do is to get some muriatic acid. Fresh plaster tends to need a lot of acid.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Thanks for the input. The water company suggested we add sequestrant right away, so we asked the PB over the phone on Saturday. We made sure they knew about the metal, but the PB said not to add anything until their service guy got here. Since we're likely going to be filing a claim against the PB in the future anyway, we didn't want them to be able to say we didn't follow their instructions.....on the other hand, I don't want stained plaster. We haven't been provided a brush, yet, but I probably should have asked on here sooner if I should go buy one myself. The guy from the pool service company will be here this morning, so we'll see what he has to say.

    When would the acid wash be done?

    I was waiting to see just what the service guy provides us, but yes, I think I'm going to order the TF-100 and I expect to need a lot of muriatic acid.
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    If they specifically told you not to add anything, then you're correct in not adding anything. Write down the specific time and person you talked to and keep it in your files.

    Given the circumstances I wouldn't do anything without express consent of your PB or service. You don't want to give them an out at this point.
    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
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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    OK, so here's the deal after the service visit. The first thing he did was add a sequestrant. After setting up the equipment (other than the bits that were not properly installed by the PB), he added CYA. He told me to wait until tomorrow night for the sequestrant to take effect before adding chlorine. He told me to do three packs of shock treatment tomorrow night and another three bags in a week. Also, he gave me some chlorine tabs to put in the skimmers (4 total). He said to take a reading with the strips provided daily and when the pH gets over 8.0 to dump in a full tub of their pH minus. Of course brushing twice a day for two weeks. He said we can start using the pool whenever we want....I've read some of the discussions about that, so I'm still debating when I give in to the kids.

    The bad news is that after he left, I was looking at the steps and I see what I think are rust stains. I tried to brush them and it seemed to have no affect. I'm afraid in the few days with the hard water, we may have already stained our brand new plaster. I will send pictures tomorrow to get further opinion.

    Obviously, I need to order my test kit and I plan to follow the guidelines provided here. They are not in conflict with anything I was told by the service guy, just far more complete.

    I did ask him about an acid wash and he said if they were going to do one they would have already. My understanding of the acid wash is that the purpose is to bring out more of the quartz. I'm actually fine with the amount of quartz that is visible now, which brings me to my next question. The quartz finish seems a little more abrasive than we anticipated. I think brushing has the effect of removing more of the plaster and exposing more of the quartz, but I know it is necessary to remove the dendrites that can form. I know I need to brush sufficiently, but will excessive brushing make the quartz finish smoother or rougher?

    Sorry if I'm rambling, I'm sure I have more questions, but I'll start with these. I should also add some statistics....the pool is ~800sq ft, estimated 28,000 gallons, SWG. I'll get all the details on equipment and add to my signature in the next few days.

    Thanks again,

    Tom
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Tom, we had a few rust stains on our plaster after our fill, when I added ma the pb told me to pour it on the area of stains slowly a little at a time. It will sink to the bottom and you can see it actually create a cloud of plaster dust as it eats at the plaster. After a few times it does take away a little plaster and the stain with it. Just make sure you create some circulation by fanning your hand or foot into the water toward said location to disperse the ma after a few mins. It is not a one time deal, a few times and we were stain free. I believe a Vitamin c tablet will also help to take care of the stain.Which would probably be less risky.
    17,000 gal, IG Gunite Diamond Brite plaster Kidneybean,w/7x11 tanning ledge& 3x5 swimout bench,244T 300lb Hayward Pro high rate sand filter(63 GPM) , Hayward 1Hp Super Pump w/3/4 hp booster pump, Polaris 280, Laars Lite 2 175k N/G Heater, Tf-100, Speed stir

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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Thanks Rob. I just read the bit on metal stains in pool school and it does give me hope that Ascorbic Acid might take care of the problem. I'm going to try the vitamin C test in the morning, but I do think the stains are iron.
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Well, I tried the vitamin C test this morning, but had a hard time telling if it really worked. After rereading the instruction, I wasn't leaving the tablet in place for 30 seconds so it may not have had as much effect. I'm pretty confident the stains are iron based, though, and since I haven't put any chlorine into the pool, yet (was going to tonight), it seemed like the perfect time to try to deal with this now if I can find somewhere to buy ascorbic acid or apparently citric acid. Does anyone have any reason why I should be hesitant to do this on plaster that is just a few days old?

    BTW, as of this morning, the color was mostly blue with just a bit of turquoise tint in the deep end. I'm looking forward to seeing it when I get home tonight.
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    I couldn't find the ascorbic acid at any stores, so I decided to hold off for now. I'm going to wait and see how the PB responds and I can always pursue that later.

    Things are going pretty well. We've been brushing and I did a chlorine shock treatment last night as instructed by the service guy. Keeping an eye on the acid level so it doesn't get too high. The water is about as clear as I would expect considering we're usually brushing plaster dust around in it.

    Thanks for everyone's input.
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Also, a related question. I know I can reduce the iron content in my home water if I don't bypass my water conditioner. I'm not sure if the type of iron my particle filter removes is really a concern, though. If it's a particle, I suspect it will get caught by the DE filter. When the company was out to deliver the water I purchased, though, they told me to always bypass the water conditioner when adding water to the pool. Can anyone tell me what the reason for this is? I prefer not to add more iron when I top the pool off, but he was pretty adamant. Thanks.
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Most home systems aren't designed for the extra load a pool requires. As long as you're only filling a little at a time I don't see it being a problem. What's the rating on your unit?
    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
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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Not sure about the rating, but I definitely wouldn't use my well to fill the pool. I'm only talking about periodically topping the pool off from the hose. I think he was saying something about the salt, but I don't see what the issue would be. I'm pretty sure the salt concentration from the conditioner is lower than the pool will have with the SWG. I thought maybe there was something I was missing.
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    The little bit of salt that you get from the softener might replace any that's lost to splashout, etc so it might not be a bad idea.
    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 - Poor Support from PB

    When we brought up the stains to the PB, he says the advice that they gave us is right because our finish requires different care than standard plaster and the sequestrant should not go in until the pool is full. I'm not sure how he gets from waiting until the pool is full to waiting until 3 days after the pool is full, but I'll consider the possibility he's being honest. Is anyone aware of any special requirements for 3M quartz that would make you want to delay adding sequestrant?

    I plan to ask him to provide us with the care instructions for the product. I want to make sure I'm following all of the right procedures.

    Tom
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool - Poor Support from PB

    The quartz crystals are inert, everything else is standard plaster. The only special treatment is that you usually need to do an acid wash to expose the crystals so the color looks right. There is nothing that would be different about using, or not using, or when to use, sequestrant compared to regular plaster.

    Of course none of that matters. He has his own procedures, which were followed, so he needs to make it come out right.
    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 Pool - Poor Support from PB

    Thanks Jason. I think you can tell from my tone that I suspected that, but the challenge is getting them to own their responsibility. It seems like they used to have good reputation, but I've signed a horrible contract with a horrible contractor
    27,000 gallon, 3M Quartz, SWG, Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSPVR (2HP variable speed pump), Pentair Quad DE filter[/color]

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