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Thread: First Solo Test Results

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    First Solo Test Results

    Our PB turned over the reins to our new pool last week. On his final visit we went through a quick pool school where he checked the chemical levels using test strips and dosed the pool accordingly. At that time he added ~5lbs of CYA (pool had none) & 1/2 gal of acid to bring the pH downfrom 8.2 to 7.4ish. Last night my wife and I took a swag at checking the pool levels. Here's what we got:

    pH 8.0
    FC 5
    TA 200
    CYA 80
    Temp=63°
    AquaRite Salt Cell @ 30%
    Salinity 3000ppm

    Note: This was using test strips. With the exception of pH and FC these things are rediculously difficult to read. I plan to order the Taylor kit tonight.

    The most obvious thing out of balance was pH. I addressed that right away by adding one third of a gallon of acid in front of one of the returns. I'll test again this even to see if it had the desired effect. According to the CYA Chart my ideal FC is 6, so I'll raise the salt cell to 35%. Should I be concerned with the high TA? My understanding is that the only way to lower TA is to drop the pH and then aerate. I've got 3 arching deckjets that could serve as aerators. Won't aeration raise my pH? seems like this would just undo the acid I just added? Lastly what causes the TA to rise and will it return?

    My builder left me a bottle of Phosfree and put 2 capfulls in during our pool school. He claimed it helps keep the waterline clean. From reading this site it seems like most don't bother measuring phosphates and this is an unnecessary additive. Add a capfull per week or no?
    22 x 36 In Ground Vinyl - 23K Gal - Saltwater - Tara Liner
    1hp 2-speed Hayward Super Pump, Hayward 6060 Booster Pump
    Hayward SwimClear C3030 Filter, Hayward 400Btu NG Heater
    Hayward Aqualogic PS-4, Polaris 280 Cleaner, ColorLogic 4.0 LED

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Carefully read the article in Pool School on how to lower TA, it should answer your questions.

    I wouldn't waste my time with the phosfree. I have no ideaq if it keeps the tile clean but phosphates are not relevant to pool care, if you do it correctly.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Quote Originally Posted by aeromorris05
    Note: This was using test strips. With the exception of pH and FC these things are rediculously difficult to read. I plan to order the Taylor kit tonight.
    You really cant go wrong with the TFtestkit. See my signature below
    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: First Solo Test Results

    Quote Originally Posted by George N
    You really cant go wrong with the TFtestkit. See my signature below
    I just placed a dontation to TFP. The discount on the kit was yet another surprise benefit. My PB has no clue how much of his hard earned time this website has saved him. Is there a prescribed path/link for purchasing the kit? I want to make sure royalties go to the right folks.
    -Jeremy
    22 x 36 In Ground Vinyl - 23K Gal - Saltwater - Tara Liner
    1hp 2-speed Hayward Super Pump, Hayward 6060 Booster Pump
    Hayward SwimClear C3030 Filter, Hayward 400Btu NG Heater
    Hayward Aqualogic PS-4, Polaris 280 Cleaner, ColorLogic 4.0 LED

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Is there a prescribed path/link for purchasing the kit? I want to make sure royalties go to the right folks.
    No. You should have a code sent to you by the forum admin, Jason Lion. Insert that code at the order checkout and the discount is automatic. If you have already ordered and didn't get the code, PM me and we'll take care of it.

    Thanks!!

    Let us know what we can do to help you keep that new pool crystal clear!!
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    I received my test kit in the mail this weekend. Last night's readings:

    pH 8.2
    TA 220
    FC 2.5
    CC 0
    CYA 80
    Temp 86

    I used the pool calculater, which indicated I needed to add a little more than 1gal of acid to get the pH down to 7.2. I had 1 gallon on hand and dumped it into the pool near a return jet with the main pump on high. Turned on the deck jets to increase aeration.

    1.5 hrs later the pH is 7.2 I'll take another reading when I get home this evening. At that time I'll determine whether to dial up the SWCG 5-10%.

    The question I have is with regard to TA. How long do I have to maintain an artificially low 7.2 pH for my desired TA to drop to 80-100? It seems like the pool keeps wanting to rise toward 8.2 so I suspect I have a buffering problem. I'd prefer to avoid adding acid regularly, as I hate handling it. If getting the TA down to the recommended levels solves this problem then I'd like to set that as a goal. For others who have attempted this, is this a 1wk process? longer?
    Thanks,

    Also thanks to those on TFP that recommended the speedstir. That thing is pretty darn useful. It frees up the hands to manage the drops and monitor color. I never would've realized how convenient it was to not have to swirl the cylinders following the addition of each chemical.
    22 x 36 In Ground Vinyl - 23K Gal - Saltwater - Tara Liner
    1hp 2-speed Hayward Super Pump, Hayward 6060 Booster Pump
    Hayward SwimClear C3030 Filter, Hayward 400Btu NG Heater
    Hayward Aqualogic PS-4, Polaris 280 Cleaner, ColorLogic 4.0 LED

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Quote Originally Posted by aeromorris05
    The question I have is with regard to TA. How long do I have to maintain an artificially low 7.2 pH for my desired TA to drop to 80-100? It seems like the pool keeps wanting to rise toward 8.2 so I suspect I have a buffering problem. I'd prefer to avoid adding acid regularly, as I hate handling it. If getting the TA down to the recommended levels solves this problem then I'd like to set that as a goal. For others who have attempted this, is this a 1wk process? longer?
    That big a drop will take a few cycles, adding the 1 gallon of MA (assuming it is 31.45%) should have dropped your TA by ~22 ppm per the "Effects of adding chemicals" section near the bottom. That would suggest you have many cycles to go (acid lower the ph and TA then aeration to raise only the ph up) before you are down in the 80-100 range. It took me about 3 weeks to go from 300 to 80 and I was watching it pretty close...when pool hit 7.8 I would drop it to 7.2.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Did you obtain a noticeable increase in pH stability after reducing your TA? I just want to make sure I'm not going through this exercise for nothing.
    22 x 36 In Ground Vinyl - 23K Gal - Saltwater - Tara Liner
    1hp 2-speed Hayward Super Pump, Hayward 6060 Booster Pump
    Hayward SwimClear C3030 Filter, Hayward 400Btu NG Heater
    Hayward Aqualogic PS-4, Polaris 280 Cleaner, ColorLogic 4.0 LED

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Not sure if my current situation will be indicative of what you would see since I am using Borates. Between having lower TA (I think I settled in at ~65) and 50 ppm of borates, I can't remember adding acid more than a couple times last year ( I only documented doing it twice) and never had to raise ph.

    Previous to last year, I did much of my "experimenting" in a smaller pool ( I had a ~1000 gallon ring pool the year before I put up our current agp). In that pool which also had a swg, my experimenting definitely showed that lower TA reduced my previously steady ph climb. This was without borates.

    I think if you search this forum (use the google search at lower left) you will find many people successful with low TA.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    I started this process Sunday and by Tuesday night I've got the following:
    pH = 7.5 (added ~1/2 gallon following the test)
    TA = 150
    FC = 4.5
    CC = 0
    CYA = didn't see the need to do this test again.

    I must have pretty good aeration b/c the pH rise over a 24hr period is enough to require dosing with acid. My hope is to reach a TA of approximately 80 by Monday. At that point I'll turn off the deck jets, record the baseline chemical levels, and monitor it every 12hrs for 2-3 days. Hopefully the pH is a lot more stable. I can handle adding acid once per week but once every other day was becoming a bit too much.
    22 x 36 In Ground Vinyl - 23K Gal - Saltwater - Tara Liner
    1hp 2-speed Hayward Super Pump, Hayward 6060 Booster Pump
    Hayward SwimClear C3030 Filter, Hayward 400Btu NG Heater
    Hayward Aqualogic PS-4, Polaris 280 Cleaner, ColorLogic 4.0 LED

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Quote Originally Posted by aeromorris05
    I can handle adding acid once per week but once every other day was becoming a bit too much.
    I think this expectation/hope is consistent with the experience of others on this board.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Update - I began the process of lowering our TA about 10 days ago. Last night's readings were as follows:

    pH 7.5
    FC 6
    CC 0
    TA 110
    CYA 80
    Temp 77

    Steady progress! We've gone through approx 3.5 gallons of MA but the good news is that pH stability has increased remarkably. Two weeks ago I was seeing a 0.5 pH increase over 24hrs. After reducing TA, our pool has been rock solid at pH=7.5 for 3 consecutive days! Our goal is to get the final TA value down to ~80 and then stop worrying about it.
    22 x 36 In Ground Vinyl - 23K Gal - Saltwater - Tara Liner
    1hp 2-speed Hayward Super Pump, Hayward 6060 Booster Pump
    Hayward SwimClear C3030 Filter, Hayward 400Btu NG Heater
    Hayward Aqualogic PS-4, Polaris 280 Cleaner, ColorLogic 4.0 LED

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    I like the plan and it sounds like you are making great progress
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    My TA runs about 70 to 80 and I might adjust the pH about twice per season. YMMV

    I think targeting 80 is a great place to start.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Update!
    It took me just under 2wks to go from TA=200 down to TA=110. The drop down to 80 took a another week and I gained the pH stability I was searching for. I'm now at TA=80 and I'm dosing at roughly 1/3gallon MA per week with no aeration. PH is pretty solid at 7.5.

    Thanks TFP for making my maintenance so much easier.
    22 x 36 In Ground Vinyl - 23K Gal - Saltwater - Tara Liner
    1hp 2-speed Hayward Super Pump, Hayward 6060 Booster Pump
    Hayward SwimClear C3030 Filter, Hayward 400Btu NG Heater
    Hayward Aqualogic PS-4, Polaris 280 Cleaner, ColorLogic 4.0 LED

  16. Back To Top    #16
    linen's Avatar
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    Re: First Solo Test Results

    Thanks for the update, nice job on working hard to get that TA down
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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