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Thread: How much bleach to have on hand?

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    How much bleach to have on hand?

    I currently have an ecosystem where my pool used to be (tadpoles and water bugs and leaves, oh my!), and this weekend will be dedicated to reversing that situation. The last 3 or 4 days, I've been going out a couple times a day to remove what leaves I could get, since I can't see the bottom I'm not sure how much is still down there. My test kit should be coming in today, and I have the next three days to devote to the pool and beginning to get it straightened out. I see in pool school that they recommend a minimum of 4 times the amount of bleach to bring the pool to shock level, and that's what I have now, but I was curious as to how bleach much people actually needed and used. Regardless, I am going out to get more bleach today because I'd rather have extra than not enough, but I wanted to see what others ended up needing to use. Thanks!
    18 x 44 AG pool 20,000 gallons
    sand filter

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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    Welcome to the forum. It's hard to give an accurate answer other than to say it is almost always more than you think. The upside of that is that it is never wasted as you can use it for your regular chlorine maintenance.

    The more gunk you can manually remove from your pool, the less it will take.

    You REALLY need good test results before you start. Importantly, for pH and CYA.

    Do you have those results?

    I would suggest at least 20 large jugs of bleach and be prepared to get some more right away.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Administrator Leebo's Avatar
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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    It's honestly hard to answer that question. The amount of algae you've got living....the amount of sun.....your pools "mood" all play in on how much you'll use. Try to get out as many of the leaves as you can and start testing/shocking. While we can't answer this question....we can help you clean up this mess.

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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    I have only the test strips now, which shows these readings:

    PH: 8.4 (it's the highest reading on the strip, I already added muriatic acid and can't take another reading for a couple of hours)
    FC: 0
    TA: 120
    CYA: 30-50 (the color matches this section on the strip, sorry can't give a more exact reading)

    I've gotten enough bleach to bring the pool to shock level 4x based on the CYA number I have here. Once the test kit arrives I should have much better numbers, but for now, I'm headed out to get more bleach.
    18 x 44 AG pool 20,000 gallons
    sand filter

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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    Welcome to the forum tishadw74!

    Wait on your test kit, you cant trust those strips!
    18' x 42" Intex (4786 Gal @ 80% capacity) Intex 8110 SWCG, 2000 GPH cartridge filter.
    Full Sun, Well Water, Borates at approx. 50
    TFTestKit-100--The Pool Calculator--Pool School

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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    The strips usually are decent at testing pH but horrible at the other parameters. Maybe you can confirm that high pH at a pool store unless you are getting the kit very soon.

    BE SURE to adjust your pH into the mid 7"s before you start the shock process. You will be unable to accurately test your pH while you have shock levels of chlorine in the pool.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    Thanks so much for the welcomes! I should get the kit in today but wanted to get started on bringing the PH down so I can hopefully get a start on the shocking first thing tomorrow. I just retested with a strip and the PH looks to have come down but it's still not down to the mid 7's. I'll wait until the kit comes in before adding anything else.
    18 x 44 AG pool 20,000 gallons
    sand filter

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    Administrator Leebo's Avatar
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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    You won't hurt anything by using a few gallons of bleach today to get some chlorine into the pool. Try one more dose of acid and you should be set to start shocking.

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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    Tested the PH this morning and it was spot on, so I started shocking. It's looking much better already, water went from dark green to grayish green. I brushed the sides and bottom, there didn't seem to be too many leaves floating up so I must have gotten quite a few in the few days leading up to now.

    I figured that if I had gone to the pool store I would have spent around $200, and based on past experience, that one trip wouldn't usually be adequate to clear up a bad case of algae. So far, I've spent just over $100 on bleach, muriatic acid, and stabilizer, and still have plenty of bleach left to help clear this up. Add in what I spent on the test kit and I'm still under what I would have spent at the pool store.
    18 x 44 AG pool 20,000 gallons
    sand filter

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    Quote Originally Posted by tishadw74
    Tested the PH this morning and it was spot on, so I started shocking. It's looking much better already, water went from dark green to grayish green. I brushed the sides and bottom, there didn't seem to be too many leaves floating up so I must have gotten quite a few in the few days leading up to now.

    I figured that if I had gone to the pool store I would have spent around $200, and based on past experience, that one trip wouldn't usually be adequate to clear up a bad case of algae. So far, I've spent just over $100 on bleach, muriatic acid, and stabilizer, and still have plenty of bleach left to help clear this up. Add in what I spent on the test kit and I'm still under what I would have spent at the pool store.
    And ... you are learning to understand what you pool needs, will be able to test for yourself, and will be able to avoid the pool store and save money from here on out.
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    Re: How much bleach to have on hand?

    That's so true! For example, when the pool store would give instructions on what to do when treating an algae outbreak, they did say to brush the sides, bottom, pool steps/ladder, etc, but never explained why, and didn't really go through how things interact with other things. At the end of last season, one of the things they told me to add brought the CYA up way high, to around 100 or so, and in researching why I couldn't hold a chlorine level, I found this site which explained the relationship between CYA and chlorine. By then it was October, and I was so discouraged I decided to just let it be until spring, but I also decided that I would try the BBB method, and worst case, I would get rid of the pool if that didn't work lol
    18 x 44 AG pool 20,000 gallons
    sand filter

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