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Thread: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

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    After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    I've been paying the monthly fee to let someone else worry about the chemicals. But this year, something happened and I now have algae on the walls. Not much on the bottom. With diligent care, I had it to a minimum, but the filter clogged and after a couple of days of no vacuum movement, the algae has gotten worse. I had it to the point where the water was clear and brushing with an algae brush produced almost no cloudiness. Today I backwashed and recharged the DE filter, measured water chemistry with my new K-2006 kit and then brushed the sides and the water is very cloudy :-/

    I am still reading but would like some help. If I can make it through this, I will probably stop the pool service and start taking care of everything myself. But I have more to learn.

    Pool: 20-22k gallons, IG, concrete/gunite
    Pump: 1/2 hp
    Filter: DE 36 sq ft (5 gallons/sec?)

    FC: 2.5 ppm
    CC: 0.5 ppm
    pH: 8.0 (yes, it was very red)
    TA: 375 ppm
    CH: 400 ppm
    CYA: 1.6 (but that was before I swept the sides)

    I'm not sure how to use the pool calculator. But it appears that my pool needs acid, which will bring down the alkalinity as well. And I'll need to bring the pH down to deal with the algae.

    Given the FC and CC levels, I'm surprised that algae is a problem. The pool people use chlorine gas.
    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    If your pool is 22,000 gals. You need 197 oz of muriatic acid to bring the pH from 8.0 to 7.2.

    You have to have the cya level mixed up with something else it can't be 1.6 and wouldn't make any difference whether you swept the sides or not. We need to know your current CYA level before we can determine how much chlorine you should maintain and what your shock level should be but you definitely don't have enough chlorine in the pool now.
    Steve Frakes
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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    ^^^^^what steve said^^^^^

    Welcome to the forum

    Retest the CYA. You can also pour the solution back into the bottle and then redo the test several times to help you determine the #.
    Here's a link from Taylor that has pics near the bottom for reference:
    http://www.taylortechnologies.com/Chemi ... ntentID=36

    Also test your fill water for TA, CH & pH and post those results.

    There are some directions for the PoolCalculator in Pool School.
    Just play around with the poolcalc and post any q's you may have in this thread.
    We will be happy to help confirm any doses you figure with the calc.
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  4. Back To Top    #4

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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    Well, I read the numbers on the incorrect side of the tester. The CYA level is well over 100, which seems way high. The pool people add "conditioner" once a year, usually in February.

    I'll test the hose water in the morning.
    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    Your actual CYA could be well over 200. Try diluting the pool water sample with tap water (1 equal part of each) before running the CYA test and double the result. CYA does not evaporate out of the water and is removed by partially draining and refilling the pool, or in limited parts of the country, reverse osmosis pool treatment. You can google reverse osmosis pool treatment to see if there is a service provider in your area. For the majority of us the solution is to drain and refill. Your CH is also high. Unless your fill water is high in CH the drain and refill will lower that number as well.

    If you choose not to lower CYA you will need significantly higher levels of FC to keep the pool sanitized and to complete the shock process to get rid of algae.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    I have measurements for my fill water.

    pH: 7.5-7.6
    TA: 260 ppm
    CH: 200

    I think the city claims water is well water. Please don't flame me, but the Leslie's site says that to fight algae you should keep the pH between 7.8 and 8.0. Of course, that may depend on what chemical stew they want to sell you to deal with algae. I know what I'll be doing this weekend.

    This pool eats money
    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    Actually chlorine works a little better at the lower pH levels. I don't know where Leslies is getting their info from, unless like you said, it's particular to the 'stew' they want you to use.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    I have my muriatic acid. I decided to open my DE filter to see what it looked like since my pool vac has decided it doesn't really want to move. Not good. So I open it up and yes, you guessed it: excessive amount of DE and lots of it is dried up chunks. The screens were in good shape and surpisingly, there wasn't much green inside. After about 5 hours of effort (some of it in the dark), I'm trying to get the top on over the oring without much success :-/ I'm trying to squish/squeeze the lid but when one side goes over the oring, the other side lifts up. Should I just replace it? Or is there some tricks? LIke clamping the lid to the bottom as I go around the rim?

    I now have proper 1 lb cup AND discovered that this is a 36 sq ft unit not 48 like it says on the front.

    Help would be greatly appreciated.
    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    If the top of the filter grid manifold has a raised "x" or other shape, flip the lid over and look inside for a corresponding notch in the top of the lid. They would need to line up exactly for the lid to seat correctly on the filter. If that is not the issue take some pictures of the problem and post them here.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    The lid has nothing inside. It took me at least 30 minutes to get the lid off. The top is sitting evenly on the oring. If I start pushing down, one side will go down and the oring on the other side will stick out even more. I've tried using my weight to push down evenly on the top without much success.

    The unit was installed in August 2007 and this is the first time I have opened it. I'm sure that I have been mean to that poor filter considering how much DE that I had to chop out of there.

    I think it will be a few weeks before my fingernails are clean again.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    What if you put the o-ring in the lip and then set the top down in it? Would that work any better?
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    Here is a link to the manual for your filter if that helps.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    That manual looks like the manual for the older model that I have. The newer model (or perhaps it the Plus) is different. The older model had a poor design. The new design (the manufacture date on the unit says 2003 even though I purchased it on 2007) is like this

    Code:
               |
               |
      ------
      |
      |  ------
      |           |
      |           | <-- The oring sits in this ushaped opening and the cover comes down around the outer edge of the oring.
         ------
    Ugh. This site doesn't honor pre tags.

    The oring on the newer model is definitely fatter than the older model.

    I can't get enough of the oring into the u-shaped opening to get the lid on.

    "Place lid on tank; push down on lid to seat in place. "

    They forgot to mention you need a 300 lb gorilla. My 160 lbs doesn't work. I was hoping that a new o-ring might work better but Leslies doesn't seem to have one in stock.

    Most of the weekend working on this and the algae gets worse :-/
    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    OK. Called a pool service guy and he came out and he was more successful than I was although I tried the same method. Perhaps it's one of the "requires the strength of a male" things combined with lots of experience. It was a Mom and Pop shop and the guy was really nice and helpful. He recommended that I might complain to Pentair as this unit is still under warranty. He also said he doesn't see any of these stainless steel units; they are not so good for homes. And as I have no good place to backwash, he said a cartridge filter would be best. Gee, those things seem pretty cheap compared this this $700 clunker.

    Now I have to figure out why my Hayward Pool Vac Ultra isn't moving. The manual is pretty useless.

    The feet stop flapping. I can't move them manually when I try. They are stuck in a single position. I've taken the bottom bracket off and the black water wheel seems to not want to turn too easily. After turning it a while, it will start moving freely. The unit has some crustiness on it. Is there anything anyone might recommend to soak it in to get some of that crud off? The black wheel might just be sticking on some algae coated crud. I can't imagine the problem is with the wings.

    Another alternative is to remove more screws and try to look inside the mechanism. This probably isn't recommended, but hey. I have a really old one of these that might have some useful spare parts.

    So at least I have a working filter and can move water through the filter. I've added muriatic acid to bring down the pH. I'll then try to get an accurate CYA measurement.
    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    I'm glad you got it back together even if you did have to enlist help.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    I found a parts diagram for the pool vac. I'm guessing that the turbine bearings are shot. From the diagram, it looks pretty safe to disassemble further.

    At least I can vacuum up most of the cloudiness and get back to algae on the walls. I still don't have an accurate CYA level, but I think I am going to drain some water from the pool. Where to discard that water, though, might be an issue. I don't think I'm supposed to send it into the city drain. My 6000 sq ft lot doesn't offer a lot of options. It might be going down the drain in the sink in the garage. I don't have any large diameter sewer drains that I am aware of.

    I am definitely discontinuing the weekly pool service. I don't think I could screw it up this bad and the $55 a month I save could be used to get professional help and it would still be cheaper.

    I'm hoping that in a week's time my pool looks better than this.

    https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/phot...eat=directlink Could it look worse?
    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    I visited the pool supply/service place that came by and put my filter together. I brought a water sample in addition to testing my water before I went. The pool guy is worried about the high alkalinity. Seems like the answer is replace water (if the replacement water has low enough TA or algaecide chemicals. As people on this thread have mentioned, the solution to high CYA is draining and replacing water :-/ Looks like I can use dry acid (sodium bisulfate) to reduce the alkalinity. Perhaps this is a better choice than muriatic acid for lowering pH since it will also lower alkalinity. My fill water has TA of 260, which seems high to begin with. My Taylor kit manual seems to indicate that I need to super shock. Blah. I think emptying water might be the best way solution. I'm afraid the chemical stew is just going to make matters worse in the long run. I'm not sure I can hold out until winter rain to replace water in my pool :-/ Anyone want to purchase a pool?

    And to top all of this off, the light in the side of the pool (which has never worked and I have no idea if it has an on/off switch or how it works) has come out of the pool wall. [attachment=0:2xg3u3my]floating_light.jpg[/attachment:2xg3u3my]

    pH: 7.6 (I added another quart of muriatic acid to bring it down to 7.2-7.4)
    FC: 18
    CC: None
    TA: 325
    CH: 600
    CYA: > 700 (I used a 1ml syringe to put 1 ml of pool water and 6 ml of fresh water in the

    And still my pool persists on being green
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    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    a1,

    First of all, welcome to the forum. You have several issues which need addressing. One of them is some basic understanding of pools. I don't mean that to sound harsh (although it does) but I do mean it to sound like you may have to "begin at the beginning" and get your pool under control after what appears to be several years of neglect.

    If you are up to the task, so is TFP. You will need to start by getting your system running properly which means your filter has to be clean and your pump has to be functioning. I'm not sure you are at that point but it is easy enough to find out.

    Are you ready to take charge of your own pool? If so, post back and let us know the path you want to take (it will involve listening to the advice on this forum and not the pool store) and we'll get you focused and start the process of reclaiming your pool.
    Dave S.
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    If your CYA is actually >700, the first thing you will need to do is effectively do a 90% drain to lower it to 70. In reality, you'll probably need to do multiple drain refills, unless it's safe in your area to drain almost completely. The normal chlorine level for 700 cya is 53 to 73. Not feasible at all!! You will never be able to maintain an effective level, let alone clear up a green pool. Don't worry about the TA. The refill will take care of that, along with "Muratic Acid" additions to keep PH in check. "Dry Acid" doesn't do anything better at lowering TA than muratic. But, with that high CYA, the first on the agenda is to lower it, which means draining, or a reverse osmosis treatment. You're throwing away money otherwise, IMHO.
    12,900 Gal. 24' X 48" ABG Vinyl Round (17th Birthday)
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    Re: After 13 years of ignorance, I have an algae problem

    It is five years later and the pool saga continues. After sitting and evaporating for a few years and leaving the deep end with water, the city discovered my greenness and I have spent several days removing the water and scraping the sludge.

    Pool saga - Google Photos

    It appears that the pool is largely in good condition and getting it running will be far less expensive than having it removed, which I estimate will be more than $10k. I would like to do as much as possible to minimize cost and the next step is cleaning. I have only used a plastic broom on the pool. An acid wash seems like it should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.

    Can someone recommend a gentle cleaning process? Or series of cleaning methods which are more aggressive?

    Pool location is Silicon Valley.

    When I finally get this pool going again, I will take care of it myself instead of paying people to mess up my pool in the first place.
    22K IG plaster (or gunite), 36 sq ft Pentair Nautilus Plus DE filter, 1/2 HP Pentair pump, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Hayward Pool Vac XL, rotted out diving board

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