As a first time pool owner, I'll appreciate patience with my ignorance, and stupid things I have/haven't done. Thanks for all the useful info on this site-- I've managed to read & re-read enough to feel utterly confused and overwhelmed by details, while losing a grip on the big picture.
My newly purchased pool was filled with 5,000 gal. city water on July 15th. Pump & SWG installed/programmed as per mfr. instructions (2 hrs daily for SWG, 5 hrs daily for pump, both operating midday.) Occasionally run pump an extra hour or 2 in the evening. Added 120 lb. pool salt & HTH stabilizer/conditioner as directed on pkg. Did not add chlorine, as initial test strips showed OK, and I assumed the SWG would provide what was needed. pH tested off-the-scale high with test strips, so also added HTH pH Minus per directions, adding another lid full each day for a week as test strips still showed off-the high end red. Have added 2-3" of well water due to evaporation.
Pool water lost its "sparkle" and turned faintly yellow around 5 days ago (prior to well water addition.) Not cloudy, just a bit dingy. Inside surfaces have become slippery. I was unhappy with inconsistent/difficult to interpret test strips, found this site, read up a bit, and purchased a Walmart HTH test kit yesterday.
Results of testing yesterday evening, using HTH kit unless otherwise stated:
FC- "total chlorine" less than 0.5 (no yellow color change in test water) FC reading at 0.2 using test strips
TA- 250 ppm using HTH kit, 150 ppm using test strips
CYA- less than 30 ppm (black dot never disappeared) CYA reading 30-50 ppm using test strips
CH- 360 ppm (as calcium carbonate) CH reading 400 ppm using test strips
Salt- 2490 ppm, using test strip provided with SWG
Copper- 0.2, using test strip provided with SWG
Water temperature- 86F in the mornings, 90F by evening. (Beastly, abnormally hot weather here.)
This morning, I added more salt, approximately 8 lbs. Have not yet retested salt level.
I realize that the TA is way too high, and chlorine & CYA are too low. Confusion ensues in determining what to address first, and how much of which product to add to the water in what order. With absolutely no offense intended, I'm also unsure which goal numbers to strive for when the SWG owner's manual recommendations are at variance with the recommendations on this site. (Example: owner's manual calls for 30-50 ppm CYA, this site suggests 70-80.)
So, what to do? Run a "boost" cycle on the SWG? Add store-bought shock treatment packets (and how much?) Liquid chlorine bleach?
I don't have inexhaustible amounts of money to throw at this. Draining/replacing water is not financially feasible right now, so I'd prefer to err on the side of caution when adding anything. Also to not want to damage my SWG.
Advice is greatly appreciated. Assume I know nothing, and you'll be about right.
Thanks for your help.