Hi all, I'm here with my first real questions....
Background info, we have always had an Intex pool, starting with a small blowup ring and upgrading every year or so as the kids got older. We just removed and gave away the 12'x36" that we had for 3 years. I chlorinated usually with a package of shock from Walmart, then had a tablet floater that floated around the pool. We've always had clear looking water when sediment was settled on the bottom, but then would get stirred up when someone was in the pool and it would be cloudy. I would test with the chem kit you can get at Walmart as well as sometimes with the test strips also at Walmart. Never gave a whole bunch of thought to the results other than pH and Chlorine. I always added some baking soda upon filling to raise pH, used shock, then floated the chlorine tablets around checking occasionally with the HTH test from Walmart. I hand skimmed the pool daily usually as the kids got ready to get in, but I don't think my wife was as diligent as I was (overnight we always seemed to get a lot of dead insects, usually tics, that I would skim out.)
We fill the pool every spring/start of summer with the well. The main concern with filling was to get the level up to where we could start the filter. Our well water has no filtration or any other system connected to it (water softener or whatever else.) We drink and use it for cooking it straight from the ground. If I recall, the neighbor told me when we moved in, he put dye in the well and traced it to the natural spring that comes out down the road. We are the only 2 houses (out in the country) in our area that does not have basically this color water coming out of the wells. Also about once a year, my father-in-law would take water samples to work and test for whatever they test drinking water for (bacteria and such.) I don't get results, but am always told it looks great.
That's my pool history, now on to the teaching (well, learning for me, you guys are the teachers )
I'll be filling my 22'x52" more than likely with my well. That means it will be a very slow fill, days and days worth. Main goal with the fill is to get it high enough to start the filter pump. If it rains, I have also in the past with the 12' pool sent the gutter over to the pool (which fills FAST!) with a stocking over the end to collect debris and filled the pool that way.
I don't have any numbers yet for my water with pH and the rest. Obviously the chlorine, CYA, and salt would be 0.
My question is, what and when would you start to add stuff? Do I want to add chlorine (bleach) straight away so that over the next few days filling it doesn't have a problem? Do I want to start mixing the salt in the water little by little for the SWG as we fill? Do I want to start adding CYA little by little as we fill? Or should I just wait until it is up to level that we can run the filter?
Being that my youngest is just around 4 foot tall, I don't think we will be filling the pool the entire way. Just full enough that the filter can run and circulate (which may well be nearly 4 feet anyways, I don't know how the inlet of the 22' Intex is yet.)
As I said, we fill for days and as soon as we can start the filter, we do. As soon as water starts to go into the pool, I can't keep my wife or the kids out of it, even before it is at a level to start filtering, and even with the 54° well water going in
Thus, there is another question on what exactly is a "safe to swim" pool? I always see the "safe", but aside from a pool being visibly green, what is "safe"? Beings that we swim in the ocean for a week at a time, have often swam in Lake Erie (dirty) often on weekends throughout previous summers, and I've even swam in funky ponds before, what would be dangerous to be in the swimming pool as I fill it up from the well?