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Thread: First test results - first time pool owner, advice please!

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    First test results - first time pool owner, advice please!

    Hello! My daughter and I just used the TF-50 test kit and got our first batch of test results. The pool is 75% full. Filter and SWG are not running yet, they will be tonight.

    I wrote notes along with our test results so I'll add them here. We have "hard water" so I don't know if that makes any difference. Nothing has been added to the pool except water out of the hose.

    pH - 7.2
    CL - 0
    TA - 45 drops added = 450
    CH - 71 drops added = 710 (R11 added, turned pink. R12 - 71 drops to turn blue)


    Does this make any sense, lol?
    First time pool owner!
    Intex Ultra Frame 18x9x52 rectangular pool
    4545 gallons
    Intex 2100 GPH Sand Filter/Pump
    Intex SWG

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    As soon as the pool is full, and the pump is running, you want to get some chlorine in the pool right away. I would start with adding 2 ppm of chlorine this evening (if you finish filling today).

    It looks like it is time to stock up on muriatic acid. It is worth double checking the TA result, this time wiping the tip of the dropper bottle with a damp tissue every couple of drops. Sometimes a static charge can build up on the dropper tip, causing the drops to be the wrong size and giving higher than normal results.
    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: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    Thanks Jason, we were extra careful to wipe the dropper after each drop - my 8yo daughter is a future scientist, lol, she loved every minute of testing. I was watching her every move and she did it correctly.

    I don't remember off the top of my head what muriatic acid is/does but I'm going to start studying Pool School!
    First time pool owner!
    Intex Ultra Frame 18x9x52 rectangular pool
    4545 gallons
    Intex 2100 GPH Sand Filter/Pump
    Intex SWG

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    frogabog's Avatar
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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    I can't answer on hardness, but you need to add stabilizer and chlorine, and then work on reducing alkalinity. PH will be affected as you lower alkalinity, you'll need to do both acid and aeration. See pool school how to lower alkalinity pool-school/lowering%20total%20alkalinity and the calculator.

    Without the pump running yet, you could slowly pour bleach while walking around the pool (beware of splashing, it's hit me a few times doing this before I learned how to float the bottle and cup) while someone walks behind you with a skimmer or paddle or brush and swirls the water up. Then manually swirl the pool together for a while, it'll mix the chlorine good enough till you can get the pump and filter running. Or wait... I'm all nervous about fill water cuz ours goes green at about 4" but yours may not bloom that quick.

    Add stabilizer in a sock in the amount specified by pool calc to get to 20-30ppm CYA. This is the easy part, you know you have none now, if you add the correct amount you'll be able to dose the pool properly without worrying about waiting a week for it to dissolve. I have a different experience w/cya sock than others do but it might work for you as well. I manually squished the sock every once in a while over a period of 2, maybe 3 hours till it was all gone from the sock. I tested the next morning, got the same results I got a week later. YMMV of course but it's worth a try.

    EDIT: oops, sorry. You have a SWG. Your CYA level will need to be much higher than 30ppm. 70-80 IIRC.

    Your hardness is crazy high, that sucks. I wouldn't know where to begin with that one. Jason does though... :~}
    Where kids swim in 54 degree water, turn blue, and giggle happily cuz they got a POOL!
    Year 3 BBB -15' x 48" Intex Metal Frame - Was using (2) 1000gph Intex cartridge filters (see Full time pumping Intex). 2012, converted to 1600gph and sand filter+SWG = Sand filter love affair!
    Don't waste time and energy looking for a better value on test kits, the TF100 is the best deal around. I did the looking and spent the extra money, but you don't have to make the same mistake. Just go here: TFTestkits. I use Pool Calculator for min/max, and shocking chlorine levels.

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    aa62579's Avatar
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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    If you are going to be using a SWG, don't you need to get salt in there 24 hours before turning it on?
    ~~ Allison ~~
    Intex 18' x 48" Easy Set Pool, approximately 5455 gallons
    Krystal Clear 1500 GPH Filter Pump Model 56635EG - 635 with Auto Timer
    BBB FOR BEGINNERS ~ THIS IS A MUST READ FOR ANYONE OVERWHELMED!!

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    Yes, add salt at least 24 hours before turning on the SWG.

    With TA and CH both starting very high you are going to have some challenges. You need to keep the PH very low, 7.4 tops, until you can get the TA down to something more reasonable. The PH is going to want to go up rapidly, so keep on top of the acid additions until TA is lower. Your current levels are also likely to cause calcium scaling in the SWG, again until you can get TA down to something more reasonable.

    With fill water TA that high, you should think about the possibility of adding an automatic acid feed system. That will greatly simplify managing high TA and CH levels.
    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: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    Ok, pool is almost done filling. Filter is set up and waiting.

    I have the solar salt waiting on the patio, I'm going to add it tonight and brush it around, but first a question: it was mentioned to add chlorine as soon as it's done filling. Is this in addition to adding the salt? If so does it matter which order?
    First time pool owner!
    Intex Ultra Frame 18x9x52 rectangular pool
    4545 gallons
    Intex 2100 GPH Sand Filter/Pump
    Intex SWG

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    Chlorine and salt don't interact. You can do them in either order with no pause.
    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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    2nd round of test results, thoughts please?

    Good Morning,
    Here are my test results from early this morning. I know I need to input numbers into the pool calculator but I won't have a chance until the kids are napping this afternoon. It's way too loud to concentrate, lol, I thought I'd take a chance and get started with your advice. Thank you!

    FC - .5
    CC - .25
    TC - .75
    pH - 8.2
    TA - 350
    CH - 670
    CYA - black dot visible when test tube is 100% filled....

    SWG was set to run 2 hours, I changed it to run 4 hours based on the manual. I have CYA crystals floating in a nylon hanging in the water. I'm running the filter 8-12 hours a day, water looks crystal clear.

    btw, these were test results from a few days ago:
    pH - 7.2
    CL - 0
    TA - 45 drops added = 450
    CH - 71 drops added = 710 (R11 added, turned pink. R12 - 71 drops to turn blue)
    First time pool owner!
    Intex Ultra Frame 18x9x52 rectangular pool
    4545 gallons
    Intex 2100 GPH Sand Filter/Pump
    Intex SWG

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    Re: 2nd round of test results, thoughts please?

    Well, you have a multitude of issues but let's take 'em in order.

    Lower your pH back to 7.2 if, in fact, you are sure it is that high.... please retest it. It is VERY unusual for it to jump like that from just "a few days ago".

    Once you are sure your pH is 7.2 or so, get some chlorine in your pool.....add 1 small jug of Clorox.

    How much CYA did you introduce into the pool?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    aa62579's Avatar
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    Re: 2nd round of test results, thoughts please?

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh
    Well, you have a multitude of issues but let's take 'em in order.

    Lower your pH back to 7.2 if, in fact, you are sure it is that high.... please retest it. It is VERY unusual for it to jump like that from just "a few days ago".

    Once you are sure your pH is 7.2 or so, get some chlorine in your pool.....add 1 small jug of Clorox.
    She posted those first numbers on June 30, so that could be 5-6 days in between (if that is the test from 'a few days ago' that she is referring to. My TA was 325 at the start and my pH was rising .2 to .3 per day. With hers at 350, I think this probably seems very plausible.
    ~~ Allison ~~
    Intex 18' x 48" Easy Set Pool, approximately 5455 gallons
    Krystal Clear 1500 GPH Filter Pump Model 56635EG - 635 with Auto Timer
    BBB FOR BEGINNERS ~ THIS IS A MUST READ FOR ANYONE OVERWHELMED!!

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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    Hi again, using the pool calculator I added:

    33oz chlorine bleach
    7.7oz muriatic acid

    about 45min. apart.

    I added 1.75lbs (27.9oz) of CYA crystals on Friday 7/1.

    I ordered the TF-50 test kit without the pH test. I picked up a pH test at a local pool store; is there one that is recommended here on board? It uses drops and a color code to give results.

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh
    Well, you have a multitude of issues but let's take 'em in order.

    Lower your pH back to 7.2 if, in fact, you are sure it is that high.... please retest it. It is VERY unusual for it to jump like that from just "a few days ago".

    Once you are sure your pH is 7.2 or so, get some chlorine in your pool.....add 1 small jug of Clorox.

    How much CYA did you introduce into the pool?
    so I'm just realizing that you said to lower the pH first, then add chlorine...is that OK that I added both today?
    First time pool owner!
    Intex Ultra Frame 18x9x52 rectangular pool
    4545 gallons
    Intex 2100 GPH Sand Filter/Pump
    Intex SWG

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    aa62579's Avatar
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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    I don't think you added enough MA. Did you make sure you put in your TA number first? For 4545 gallons with 350 TA, I get that you would need 43 oz of 31% MA to lower it from 8.2 to 7.2.
    ~~ Allison ~~
    Intex 18' x 48" Easy Set Pool, approximately 5455 gallons
    Krystal Clear 1500 GPH Filter Pump Model 56635EG - 635 with Auto Timer
    BBB FOR BEGINNERS ~ THIS IS A MUST READ FOR ANYONE OVERWHELMED!!

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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    oh thanks Allison! Not sure what happened there, lol, can't even figure out how I got 7.7oz now?! I'm going to go add some more acid.
    First time pool owner!
    Intex Ultra Frame 18x9x52 rectangular pool
    4545 gallons
    Intex 2100 GPH Sand Filter/Pump
    Intex SWG

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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    Hello everyone,

    I'm posting my test results today in hopes that you can give me some pointers. I've been struggling all month trying to bring the TA down. The SWG as well is giving us problems - the calcium buildup is outrageous and it keeps indicating "low salt" when in fact the salt is high (according to the pool store).

    Here are the results from the pool store 2 days ago:

    CYA - 23
    FC - .3
    pH 8.2
    TA 234
    total hardness 366
    salt 3900
    saturation index 1.3
    TDS 5000

    We drained 6" of water and refilled. I've followed the Pool Calculator for the past 2 days and here's what I've got this afternoon:

    FC .25
    pH 7.2 (or lower)
    TA 170
    CH 550

    I reordered the CYA kit and I'm expecting it in the mail today, so I don't have that number. I also don't have a test for salt at the moment...

    The SWG has been turned off for the past few days because I need to clean it and haven't had time until this afternoon. The filter is running about 6-8 hours a day. The water was cloudy and smelled like a lake two days ago, it's cleaned up today, clear and smells normal. I'm just stumped at getting these numbers in order.

    Any help would be appreciated! I'm going to clean the swg now and hopefully get that running.
    First time pool owner!
    Intex Ultra Frame 18x9x52 rectangular pool
    4545 gallons
    Intex 2100 GPH Sand Filter/Pump
    Intex SWG

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    aa62579's Avatar
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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    You need to keep that pH down. How often are you adding MA? Do you have a test kit so that you can test your pH every day?

    You need to get the chlorine up. Even with a SWG, that is not enough FC. You said the SWG has been turned off. Are you adding bleach every day while it is not running?
    ~~ Allison ~~
    Intex 18' x 48" Easy Set Pool, approximately 5455 gallons
    Krystal Clear 1500 GPH Filter Pump Model 56635EG - 635 with Auto Timer
    BBB FOR BEGINNERS ~ THIS IS A MUST READ FOR ANYONE OVERWHELMED!!

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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    Hi Allison, yes I've been adding bleach daily but within 24 hours it's gone. With regards to the pH and TA - I keep lowering the pH with acid and then use aeration to lower TA? Since my pH is low already - I need to start aerating?

    Is it safe to use my kids to aerate (splash machines! )or should I purchase/make some kind of device?
    First time pool owner!
    Intex Ultra Frame 18x9x52 rectangular pool
    4545 gallons
    Intex 2100 GPH Sand Filter/Pump
    Intex SWG

  18. Back To Top    #18

    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    forgot to add, I do have a basic pH test kit. I'm adding acid daily, except we were away for the weekend so it went 3 days with nothing being added (except rain; leaves; bugs
    First time pool owner!
    Intex Ultra Frame 18x9x52 rectangular pool
    4545 gallons
    Intex 2100 GPH Sand Filter/Pump
    Intex SWG

  19. Back To Top    #19
    aa62579's Avatar
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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    Quote Originally Posted by greenmom17
    Hi Allison, yes I've been adding bleach daily but within 24 hours it's gone. With regards to the pH and TA - I keep lowering the pH with acid and then use aeration to lower TA? Since my pH is low already - I need to start aerating?

    Is it safe to use my kids to aerate (splash machines! )or should I purchase/make some kind of device?
    Aeration acutally RAISES pH.

    It looks like your TA is going down. It is not a fast process. You are doing what you need to do, except don't let it get up as high as the 8.2 from the first reading in your last post. If you want to lower TA as fast as possible, lower it back down to 7.2 each time it gets to 7.4. If you want to go slower, lower each time it gets to 7.8. I'd need a guru to answer more on this, but I think if you keep your pH lower, it will help your saturation index which might help with scaling.

    I don't know if you have enough CYA in there to hold your bleach. How much bleach are you adding each night?
    ~~ Allison ~~
    Intex 18' x 48" Easy Set Pool, approximately 5455 gallons
    Krystal Clear 1500 GPH Filter Pump Model 56635EG - 635 with Auto Timer
    BBB FOR BEGINNERS ~ THIS IS A MUST READ FOR ANYONE OVERWHELMED!!

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    aa62579's Avatar
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    Re: First test results - first time pool owner, advice pleas

    Quote Originally Posted by greenmom17
    forgot to add, I do have a basic pH test kit. I'm adding acid daily, except we were away for the weekend so it went 3 days with nothing being added (except rain; leaves; bugs
    Ah I see, so did it get up to 8.2 when you were away?
    ~~ Allison ~~
    Intex 18' x 48" Easy Set Pool, approximately 5455 gallons
    Krystal Clear 1500 GPH Filter Pump Model 56635EG - 635 with Auto Timer
    BBB FOR BEGINNERS ~ THIS IS A MUST READ FOR ANYONE OVERWHELMED!!

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