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Thread: total alkalinity

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    total alkalinity

    I have recently been turned loose by my builder to maintain a new pool. He told me to keep my chlorine levels and ph in balance, but did not even mention TA. My water has been crystal clear and the ph and chlorine levels have been easily balanced. How important is TA? I did a test with a test strip tonight and my TA looks to be very low, in the 20-30 range. Isn't throwing a bunch of baking soda into the pool to bring my TA up to 100 going to throw ph way off?

    9500 gallon plaster/gunite pool w/waterfall, 1/2 HP 1sp pump, 120 sq-ft Cartridge Filter, 336 sq-ft EPDM Solar Panels, CPSC16 SWG, Boratized

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Houston, Texas

    Re: total alkalinity

    Hi, welcome to TFP!
    Test strips are not accurate. One of the best investments you can make in your pool is a high quality test kit such as the Taylor k2006 or the TF 100. You will have more control over the water quality of your pool and consistent test results you can trust. Until you are able to get your own kit, take a water sample to a pool store and have it tested. Do not buy anything! Post the results here and we will help you determine what you need to balance the water.
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    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Silver Spring, MD

    Re: total alkalinity

    Welcome to TFP!

    TA doesn't need to be exact, but you do want it to be generally in the right range. If TA is way too low the PH can swing around wildly. If TA is way too high the PH will tend to rise fairly rapidly and you are at additional risk for calcium scaling. The correct target for TA depends on what you are using as a chlorine source. TA should be a bit higher if you are using trichlor tablets, and a bit lower if you have a SWG or lots of aeration. Changing TA will have a very small effect on PH, but not usually enough to worry about.

    If your TA really is 20-30, see zea3's comments, then you certainly want to raise TA somewhat, but not necessarily all the way to 100.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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