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Thread: Soon to be new pool owner first time......... Please Help

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    Soon to be new pool owner first time......... Please Help

    Good morning all.
    Im new to this pool forum and have been reading all that I can for about 15 days.
    Ive ordered and received the tf100 test kit and will be using the BBB.

    We purchased a bank repo with a pool in Las Vegas, Gunnite just chipped out and will be plastered in 4 days.
    30'x14' 8.5' deep end 4' shallow end.
    It also came with a fiberglass hot tub that will be on the same pump-filter-heater system.



    I came up with 19687 gal is this correct from the est?

    pump---- variable speed inteliflow
    filter--- pentair 420
    heater---- pentair 400k btu

    The bicarb start up seem to make sense for plaster longevity and from my understanding of reading "Start up new plaster" TA is to be maintained @ 100-350 ppm and ph below 8.2.
    Which end of this range (100-350) is best? Why?
    Would you fill immediately or let it cure for 4-6 hrs?
    Others on this site have recommended 2 triclor pucks in the skimmer for the first 1-2 weeks and then bring up the fc slowly. Any thoughts on rate of increase of fc over time?

    Should I have the baking soda pre mixed in buckets and ready to add as the pool fills, or is it ok to add after the fill?


    current results of fill water to be used are
    ta 160
    ch 280
    ph 7.8

    @ 19687 gal the numbers that I came up with are
    163 oz bleach @ 6% to get to 4ppm
    647 oz baking soda to get to TA of 300ppm
    79 oz cya to get to 30ppm

    What other questions should I be asking? or what am I missing?

    Thank you for your time and for all of the other great and informative posts.

    vegaspool
    19000 gal gunite,
    600 gal hottub,
    Intelliflo variable speed pump,
    Pentair 420 filter,
    Pentair 400k heater,
    Hayward Navigator Pro,
    TF-100
    Speed Stir ->->-> Great tool for easy testing

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Silver Spring, MD
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    Re: Soon to be new pool owner first time......... Please Hel

    I get closer to 18,000 gallons, but it actually depends on many details I don't know. Any number around there is good enough for now. You can refine your estimate of how many gallons you have over time by watching if chemicals consistently have too much effect or too little.

    Since you are doing a fresh plaster startup you want to add chlorine and CYA slowly at first. The simplest way to do that is to use trichlor tablets for the first few weeks. They will bring the CYA and FC levels up naturally with little extra effort on your part. Just keep two tablets in the skimmer at all times and run the pump 24/7.

    I don't do bicarb startups, despite the advantages, so I can't comment on TA levels or various ways to add baking soda.

    You start filling as soon as the plaster is firm. Typically the plaster is firm enough as soon as the plasterers are done, but ask them to be sure.
    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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    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Re: Soon to be new pool owner first time......... Please Hel

    Pool gallonage is generally over estimated, due to curves in most pools. So JasonLion's number would be more accurate. It might even be less than that, maybe as low as 16,000 gallons. You could watch the water meter as it fills.

    Your tap water is generally consider somewhat hard water (for home use), but actually is good for new plaster pools. Since the combined total of the alkalinity (160 ppm) and calcium hardness (280 ppm) is 440 ppm, you only need to increase the alkalinity another 40-60 ppm. (The bicarb start-up program is based on a combined total of 500 ppm, not automatically 300-350 ppm of alkalinity). And since your starting number is already somewhat high, I think you should just wait for the pool to be filled before adding about 10 lbs. of sodium bicarbonate (baking soda). Then adjust the pH down a little to about 7.5 to 7.8.

    I strongly recommend insisting (to the plastering contractor) that the plaster be allowed to dry for six hours before starting the filling. Otherwise, the bowl of the pool could be compromised and will stain or discolor easier and quicker over time.
    I suggest you read "Ten Steps to Quality Pool Plaster" on http://www.poolhelp.com and then click on "onBalance" and find that handout writeup on the left column. You can also google it. When the plasterer is mixing the cement up, get two paper cups and scoop a sample of cement on the first batch and then on the final batch. Keep them for future use.

    Ask the plasterer to not add more than one pound of calcium chloride to one hundred pounds of cement. It is warm in Las Vegas, there is no need to add alot of CC, but they often want to anyway. So don't let them. The plaster mix should be thick and not soupy. Minimize adding water while troweling, should only be for trowel lubrication on final troweling. What type of plaster? Quartz, colored, standard white?

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    Re: Soon to be new pool owner first time......... Please Hel

    I think that it might be more trouble than it would be worth really to tell the plaster guy how to mix his plaster. Kinda like telling your CPA how to file your 1040. If he has done plaster before and has pools in the area to show you for reference examples, he probably has a handle on it.

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    Re: Soon to be new pool owner first time......... Please Hel

    Because the pool owner is paying the bill, he can tell the plasterer to follow ACI or PCA guidelines or any standard he wishes. Just like being able to tell the CPA not to cross the line on tax deductions. The CPA can agree or not, but the client can go elsewhere to get what he wants done right. If the plasterer doesn't recognize or agree with these reasonable and documented standards and limitations, I wouldn't let him do the job. Since we are in a recession, many subconstractors are fairly hungry for work. Pool owners that want a quality plaster job, will insist on it. It works, and I have worked with many pool owners that have insisted on the plasterer following the proper procedures that I have outlined in my write-up. And none have had the plaster problems that we hear about happening.

    I wish all plasterers knew all of the proper practices to follow. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Case in point, why are some pool owners on this forum seeking information on the causes of their pool turning gray, white spotting, cracking, delamination, and calcium nodules on new plaster jobs througout the country? Yes, there are many good plasterers that know how to do the right job. But all of them need to stay on top of their new trainees. Mistakes happen. If you want a quality job; then learn and demand that good practices are followed. If the plasterer wants the job, he will do it your way. But let's recognize that these guidelines are standard and recognized in the cement/concrete industry and are simple to follow. It does not place any undue burden on the plasterer. If he doesn't like it, you don't want him doing this specialty work. It is your choice.

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    Re: Soon to be new pool owner first time......... Please Hel

    JasonLion
    I will use 2 trichlor in skimmer for the first few weeks Thank you

    onBalance
    I'll check the household water meter and get a read from the fill guy for total gal
    Plaster is sky blue tint I requested inorganic dye, thanks for the clarity on combined total of 500ppm.
    Thanks again for a great forum I've learned a great deal and look forward to more reading.
    19000 gal gunite,
    600 gal hottub,
    Intelliflo variable speed pump,
    Pentair 420 filter,
    Pentair 400k heater,
    Hayward Navigator Pro,
    TF-100
    Speed Stir ->->-> Great tool for easy testing

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    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Arizona & California
    Posts
    771

    Re: Soon to be new pool owner first time......... Please Hel

    Most Color Pigment manufacturers prohibit the addition of any calcium chloride added to the plaster mix, and also prohibit the use of wet or water troweling with their product. It is known that both of those issues can cause streaking and blotchiness on "colored" plaster. Unfortunately, many plasterers don't know that or refuse to follow because they are use to always doing both and like doing both. Adding CC speeds up the hardening process so they can finish the pool quickly, and sprinkling water on the surface makes it easier for them to trowel and finish. Most plasterers will "advise" pool owners that all Colored jobs will streak and become blotchy, or usually the plasterer will later blame "unbalanced" water maintenance for the cause. So there is little motive to do it the right way.

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