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Thread: chlorine levels barely budging

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    chlorine levels barely budging

    Hi all,

    Opening pool this weekend in AZ and it had some slight green algae up the walls in the shaded spots of the pool, plus general cloudy appearance. Not swamp, but certainly a green tint to it. 9ft deep and could clearly see the bottom but not clear by any means.

    Starting point was PH at 9, chlorine 0, pump backwashed, vacuum working and all leaves and debris removed from 25,000 gallon pool.

    Day1
    I had a whole load of HTH products so used ph minus and got the PH down to 7.6 overnight while scrubbing the entire pool to loosen all the algae and other dirt.

    Day2
    Backwashed until water was clear (about 1 min) and used 36oz of stabilized chlorinating granules (i did this on a sunny day so maybe that was a mistake) and scrubbed pool again.

    Day3
    Backwashed some green water out. PH was still 7.6, chlorine still registering 0. Pool water had lost a bit of the green tint by now. Added 3 bags of hth shock-n-swim at night just before filter came on. Packaging states 1-2 bags per 11,000 gallons.

    Day4
    Pool is slightly cleaner and the measurements are PH 7.6, chlorine about 1. But it's hardly crystal clear blue lagoon type water, and according to HTH this is the end of the steps needed to clean a pool!

    So my questions are
    should i continue what i'm doing by adding chlorine and backwashing?

    will this get the chlorine level up to 4ppm and change the water to a clear blue color? I have AT LEAST seen the chlorine levels rise to 1ppm with the addition of the shock-n-swim last night, and the pool does look clearer as a result. But i thought shock-n-swim was supposed to get chlorine levels really high then let them drop. My levels went from 0 to 1. Hardly a 'shock' to the pool.

    I am curious as to why the chlorinating granules on day2 had virtually no effect on chlorine levels or pool appearance. Does adding chlorine granules in 100deg daytime sun reduce their potency.

    Is there some other element to the pool chemistry that is limiting the effectiveness of the chlorine because it should be pretty high by now, instead of being at 1.

    Thanks for any help
    22K gal, IG Vinyl, ?HP pump, ? sqft Hayward DE filter with a currently injured Dolphin Diagnostic cleaning robot. Pool built in 2001, new liner 2013.

  2. Back To Top    #2

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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    Hello and welcome to TFP!

    First off, you should get a good test kit and post you FULL results here so we can get a better picture of what's going on.

    Second, you should follow instructions for shocking you pool (in Pool School). This will be much more effective than instructions on the back of a bag of chemicals. The Pool Calculator will tell you exactly what to add (and how much) to reach target levels.

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    Quote Originally Posted by blakej
    Hello and welcome to TFP!

    First off, you should get a good test kit and post you FULL results here so we can get a better picture of what's going on.
    would this be a good test kit?

    HTH 6 Way Test Kit allows spa and hot tub owners to test their water for its levels of total chlorine, total bromine, pH, total alkalinity, total hardness, and cyanuric acid which determine the overall health of your system. Its liquid testing agents give you quick, accurate results that allow you to purchase the right product to correct any imbalance, saving you time, money, and considerable frustration. 6 Way Test Kit, like all HTH products, is made in the USA to ensure quality, allowing you to buy with confidence.
    22K gal, IG Vinyl, ?HP pump, ? sqft Hayward DE filter with a currently injured Dolphin Diagnostic cleaning robot. Pool built in 2001, new liner 2013.

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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    You need a test kit that will allow you to test FC levels above 5 ppm. The only way to do that accurately is get a test kit that has a FAS-DPD chlorine test in it. Not just DPD, but FAS-DPD. Your HTH kit does not have this test. A Taylor K-2006 or a TF-100 from tftestkits.net both have these tests.

    As Blake was saying, you need to shock your pool. Follow the instructions in this link to do that. pool-school/shocking_your_pool. Unfortunately, you can't really shock your pool without having the FAS-DPD chlorine test. People try to shock with the simple kits, but really, when you do this, you are just guessing.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    I will go pick up one of these...in a couple of hours and post the results

    http://www.lesliespool.com/Home/Pool-Ch ... 81329.html

    Would that be suitable?

    Reading 'pool school' (really good stuff btw) it seems anything else will just end up with me throwing good money after bad. I am sure the problem i am having is a simple imbalance somewhere, but i guess i need the test to find out what.
    22K gal, IG Vinyl, ?HP pump, ? sqft Hayward DE filter with a currently injured Dolphin Diagnostic cleaning robot. Pool built in 2001, new liner 2013.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    Quote Originally Posted by danaz
    I will go pick up one of these...in a couple of hours and post the results

    http://www.lesliespool.com/Home/Pool-Ch ... 81329.html

    Would that be suitable?

    Reading 'pool school' (really good stuff btw) it seems anything else will just end up with me throwing good money after bad. I am sure the problem i am having is a simple imbalance somewhere, but i guess i need the test to find out what.
    Yes that would be a good kit (I think it is the same as the K-2006 ... the TF-100 you can order online is a better deal, but then you have to wait a few days for delivery).

    Have you confirmed they actually have it in the store? Most Leslie's do not seem to stock that kit.

    Keep reading ... as you will soon realize, know the CYA level is pretty important and you just can not trust pool store testing. {See THIS POST for a 4 store comparison} If you find that your CYA is too high (you may have added some with "shock" you were adding, although I am not sure if what you were using was adding CYA or CH), then a partial drain is your only option.

    You a right, the investment of a good kit will allow you to stop throwing away money and allow you to ONLY add to your pool what it specifically NEEDS and not what the pool store wants to sell you.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    That kit will be fine. As jblizzle mentioned, check ahead to see if the store actually has the kit on the shelf as most don't. The TF-100 is a better value, but you can go with either one.

    Taking care of your pool is not hard. The reason that so many people believe pools to be a ton of work almost always comes down to testing. Because most pool store outlets don't stock service level kits, much less teach their customers why these are necessary, people are left to guess and buy the "miracle solutions" from their pool stores which are usually a band-aid on the problem. Here at TFP, we have nothing to sell you. We just want to help you like we were helped when we showed up here with our own pool nightmares. We will get you pointed the right direction. As long as you follow what we teach, you will be good to go.

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    Just phoned leslies and they did not have the FAS-DPD kit.

    Furthermore, the guy barely knew what i was talking about (not that i do either yet), but it has at least reinforced my opinion that i should learn how to treat the pool myself rather than rely on the high-street.

    (note: i'm sure some leslies people are great, but everytime i go i feel like i'm getting the hard sell)

    I will make an order for this later today...

    http://tftestkits.net/Taylor-K-2006-p27.html

    What do you think i should do for my pool in the meantime?
    Add more chlorine or just leave it alone?
    22K gal, IG Vinyl, ?HP pump, ? sqft Hayward DE filter with a currently injured Dolphin Diagnostic cleaning robot. Pool built in 2001, new liner 2013.

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    Actually i will just go for the TF-100 Test Kit

    It seems $13 more but looking at the agent amounts it will last a long longer.

    Thanks for the help so far...i'll go pack my bag and head for pool school for the rest of the day.
    22K gal, IG Vinyl, ?HP pump, ? sqft Hayward DE filter with a currently injured Dolphin Diagnostic cleaning robot. Pool built in 2001, new liner 2013.

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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    That is a great test kit, although I prefer this one... http://tftestkits.net/The-TF-100-Test-Kit-p4.html

    EDIT: looks like you changed your mind just as I was posting

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    I would say just wait for the kit. It may turn out that you have to change some water out (high CYA and/or CH) and then you are just dumping whatever chemicals you have added.

    Adding a gallon of bleach everyday is just not going to be enough to raise your FC high enough and you would just be guessing if you added more.

    You will definitely have the TF100 before the weekend and then hopefully you will have time to do a proper shocking process.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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  12. Back To Top    #12

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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    The turnaround for the TF-100 is superfast.

  13. Back To Top    #13
    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    Quote Originally Posted by danaz
    Actually i will just go for the TF-100 Test Kit

    It seems $13 more but looking at the agent amounts it will last a long longer.

    Thanks for the help so far...i'll go pack my bag and head for pool school for the rest of the day.
    TF100 is the better value. And if your pool is green and you will be shocking the pool, it may be worth the XL option to make sure you can do adequate FC testing. Finally, everyone who gets it loves the Speedstir.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
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  14. Back To Top    #14

    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    just reading pool school about chlorinating using plain household bleach and the BBB method!

    I cannot describe how much i hate putting chlorine pucks in the pool and having the cheap little plastic chlorinator float around and gather debris on the underside. Now i find out not only are they ugly, annoying and expensive, but are likely contributing to pool problems.

    When i first got a pool i thought testing water was a pain. But now i'd MUCH rather do a quick 2 min test and pour in some bleach than deal with 3" chlorine pucks at $70 a tub. I am hooked on this stuff right now..s'posed to be working hah!

    Anyway...testkit is on the way so hopefully my pool will be up and running in a week or so.
    22K gal, IG Vinyl, ?HP pump, ? sqft Hayward DE filter with a currently injured Dolphin Diagnostic cleaning robot. Pool built in 2001, new liner 2013.

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    Wait on your kit to begin shocking as mentioned above but use bleach to keep some FC in the pool while waiting on it. I'd add 2 ppm per day till the kit gets there. You can use the Pool Calculator to figure out how much 2 ppm per day is.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    I ran the numbers earlier ... a gallon will give you 2.5ppm FC assuming the 25k gallon pool.

    The bigger jugs (182 oz) will give you 3.5ppm.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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  17. Back To Top    #17

    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    just took some pics to give an impression of what is going on. it's not that bad judging from pics i've seen elsewhere, but certainly not nice and blue - especially in the deep end where the main drain is which is 10ft deep there.

    btw the 'greeny' looking haze at the far corner is not algae, it's a reflection of the trees.







    The kit will probably arrive in a couple of days so should i put chlorine in or wait having seen the pictures?

    I saw liquid chlorine in the pool isle at walmart the other day (just simple carboard boxes stacked 10 high at the end of the isle with hardly any branding - basic stuff i'm sure) so could easily grab some and pour it in according to the pool calculator. The reason i ask is because i don't want the algae to get a foothold again. It wasn't a massive bloom, but it was certainly getting murky green in the deep spots which never get direct sun. Plus when i scrubbed the tiles yesterday some of the grout had little spores clinging at the waterline.

    btw...sharp edged steel palette knife worked wonders yesterday on all the debris and limescale that had almost cemented itself to the waterline.
    22K gal, IG Vinyl, ?HP pump, ? sqft Hayward DE filter with a currently injured Dolphin Diagnostic cleaning robot. Pool built in 2001, new liner 2013.

  18. Back To Top    #18
    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    I think I would add a bottle of bleach every day (maybe after the sun goes down so the sun is not a factor) to keep it from getting too green ... make sure the pump circulated it for 30-60 minutes after adding. Your pool looks pretty clear and hopefully will not take long to clear up.

    What test results do you have the you can post?

    Check the prices of the chlorine ... it may still be cheaper to buy the big bottles of the Walmart 6% bleach than the "pool" bleach which may be 10% or 12.5%.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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  19. Back To Top    #19
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    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    The kit will probably arrive in a couple of days so should i put chlorine in or wait having seen the pictures?
    Yes, go ahead and add about 2ppm each evening. This will help keep things under control until you can test.
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
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  20. Back To Top    #20

    Re: chlorine levels barely budging

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle
    I think I would add a bottle of bleach every day (maybe after the sun goes down so the sun is not a factor) to keep it from getting too green ... make sure the pump circulated it for 30-60 minutes after adding. Your pool looks pretty clear and hopefully will not take long to clear up.

    What test results do you have the you can post?

    Check the prices of the chlorine ... it may still be cheaper to buy the big bottles of the Walmart 6% bleach than the "pool" bleach which may be 10% or 12.5%.
    thanks again jblizzle and butterfly - i will add some chlorine until the test kit arrives then post full set of results.

    the only test results i have so far are chlorine and ph from a basic hth two test kit.
    chlorine was 0 and ph 8.2 at the start
    chlorine is now 1 and ph 7.6 after taking steps outlined in original topic post
    22K gal, IG Vinyl, ?HP pump, ? sqft Hayward DE filter with a currently injured Dolphin Diagnostic cleaning robot. Pool built in 2001, new liner 2013.

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