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Thread: New pool owner with some issues

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    tracy070's Avatar
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    New pool owner with some issues

    I just moved this summer from Minnesota to the Dallas area, I figured with the heat I would lilke to give a pool a go. It didn't go great to start, I had a few issues to fix from the get go, and the previous owner had just replaced the waterfall pump. A few weeks after owning i tried to fire up the hot tub, but the heater would not ignite. Being a handy guy I took it apart and repaired the pilot so it now works. Then I decided to do my first backwash on my DE filter, and the pin broke in the valve. It took over a week for my new parts to arrive, leaving my pumps idle for 9 days! UGH! I have been in for about 2 months now and just got my first test kit from leslies because I have had minor green on the walls and floor of my pool ever since it was idle. It is only a little bit and the water seems fairly clear, I only notice the green on the walls after about 5-6 days. my first test results:

    FC - 5
    TC - 5
    PH - 7.3
    ALk - 175
    CH - 900 (yes, 900!)
    CYA - 110

    gives me a saturation index of .6

    So, where do I go from here? I have never owned a pool before, and would like to know where I should go from here.

    Thanks for the feedback!
    20K gallon IG Gunite-pebble w/ raised spa/waterfall, Hayward 6020 DE filter, unknown pool/spa/waterfall pump, unknown blower blower, LPG heater, Ultrapure Ozonator 25, 2004, Dallas TX

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    I just moved this summer from Minnesota to the Dallas area, I figured with the heat I would lilke to give a pool a go. It didn't go great to start, I had a few issues to fix from the get go, and the previous owner had just replaced the waterfall pump. A few weeks after owning i tried to fire up the hot tub, but the heater would not ignite. Being a handy guy I took it apart and repaired the pilot so it now works. Then I decided to do my first backwash on my DE filter, and the pin broke in the valve. It took over a week for my new parts to arrive, leaving my pumps idle for 9 days! UGH! I have been in for about 2 months now and just got my first test kit from leslies because I have had minor green on the walls and floor of my pool ever since it was idle. It is only a little bit and the water seems fairly clear, I only notice the green on the walls after about 5-6 days. my first test results:

    FC - 5
    TC - 5
    PH - 7.3
    ALk - 175
    CH - 900 (yes, 900!)
    CYA - 110

    gives me a saturation index of .6

    So, where do I go from here? I have never owned a pool before, and would like to know where I should go from here.
    You should go to

    You'll need to perform the shock process. But to do that effectively, you'll need a better FC test, called FAS-DPD. Luckily, it is available separately from http://tftestkits.net. You'll also be wanting to drain and refill a whole bunch of water, because the CYA level is far too high.

    Get yourself comfortable, get a drink, and start reading

    Once you have the proper test kit, and have brought CYA levels (also helps with CH!) down by drain & refill, it should only take a few days to clear the green for keeps.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Thanks Richard320,

    I got some more readings today, and I am using leslies FAS-DPD. I checked my tap water hardness is only 100. I also re-checked my numbers and i multiplied my drops for CH by 25, should have been by 10. so my hardness is only 360! I also added 3 cups of soda ash and brought my TA down to 80. I will use these new numbers and shock my pool tomorrow when I have time.
    20K gallon IG Gunite-pebble w/ raised spa/waterfall, Hayward 6020 DE filter, unknown pool/spa/waterfall pump, unknown blower blower, LPG heater, Ultrapure Ozonator 25, 2004, Dallas TX

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Do retest your CYA by diluting the sample as follows. The reason being that the test only goes to 100 to 110, so it could be say 200 and you'd never know. This is critical so you know how much water to drain and then refill to dilute the CYA.
    You just can't shock at that high of a cya, not unless you get tankards of chlorine for free.

    If your CYA level is 90 or higher, repeat the test adjusting the procedure as follows:
    a. Fill the mixing bottle to the lower mark with pool water.
    b. Continue filling the mixing bottle to the upper mark with tap water.
    c. Shake briefly to mix.
    d. Pour off half of the contents of the mixing bottle, so it is again filled to the lower mark.
    e. Continue the test normally from step 3, but multiply the final result by two.

    Step 4 is where you shake it, let it rest then shake it again once more. Then you begin pouring the sample into the view tube.

    If you still come close to bottoming out, repeat the test again, but this time with a 3:1 dilution. Multiply the final number by 3.
    Thanks for reading... - Tony
    Da' Pool: Intex 15'x42" 3284gal AGP EasySet (Inflatable Ring) - (Summer 2014: 27' round EW /w 6.5' deep end @ 22,500gal)
    Pump & Cart Mod: 1000gph Cart. 5ft² - 2 nylons, 24/7 OP. Traps bugs/bits, lasts longer/cleans easier = Happier Pool Owner!!
    The Bible for a "Trouble Free Pool" life = PoolSchool, the BBB method a TF100 test kit(Recommend Kits Compared). - Cleaning a Sand Filter
    Water looks like GLASS, if yours doesn't...SLAM IT! Feels nice and never been happier!!! :D

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    I got some more readings today, and I am using leslies FAS-DPD.
    They don't often have the right kit in the stores. Did your local store carry it our did you order online from their website?

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    I checked my tap water hardness is only 100. I also re-checked my numbers and i multiplied my drops for CH by 25, should have been by 10. so my hardness is only 360!
    I'll bet that was a relief!

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    I also added 3 cups of soda ash and brought my TA down to 80. I will use these new numbers and shock my pool tomorrow when I have time.
    Here you lost me. Adding soda ash would increase your TA not lower it.


    Sent via Tapatalk...
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
    Hayward SuperPump (model ?), Polaris 380 & PB4 Booster Pump

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    I also added 3 cups of soda ash and brought my TA down to 80. I will use these new numbers and shock my pool tomorrow when I have time.
    Quote Originally Posted by UnderWaterVanya
    Here you lost me. Adding soda ash would increase your TA not lower it.
    That is strange then...I used the poolcalculator to get my numbers and I figured the TA was an easy fix, and it went down.

    Either way, I got too busy yesterday so I will re-test and work on getting the CYA down if needed before shock. Thanks for all the help and suggestions.
    20K gallon IG Gunite-pebble w/ raised spa/waterfall, Hayward 6020 DE filter, unknown pool/spa/waterfall pump, unknown blower blower, LPG heater, Ultrapure Ozonator 25, 2004, Dallas TX

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    I also added 3 cups of soda ash and brought my TA down to 80. I will use these new numbers and shock my pool tomorrow when I have time.
    Quote Originally Posted by UnderWaterVanya
    Here you lost me. Adding soda ash would increase your TA not lower it.
    That is strange then...I used the poolcalculator to get my numbers and I figured the TA was an easy fix, and it went down.
    It was a powder, right?
    Are you sure it wasn't dry acid you added?
    Did it lower your pH too?
    Thanks for reading... - Tony
    Da' Pool: Intex 15'x42" 3284gal AGP EasySet (Inflatable Ring) - (Summer 2014: 27' round EW /w 6.5' deep end @ 22,500gal)
    Pump & Cart Mod: 1000gph Cart. 5ft² - 2 nylons, 24/7 OP. Traps bugs/bits, lasts longer/cleans easier = Happier Pool Owner!!
    The Bible for a "Trouble Free Pool" life = PoolSchool, the BBB method a TF100 test kit(Recommend Kits Compared). - Cleaning a Sand Filter
    Water looks like GLASS, if yours doesn't...SLAM IT! Feels nice and never been happier!!! :D

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    In order for TA to go down, pH would also have to drop. Did your pH drop?
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
    Hayward SuperPump (model ?), Polaris 380 & PB4 Booster Pump

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    PH went up to 7.5, TA went from 175-80. NO joke...but I am new to this so my chemistry may be a little off at this point. I guess soda ash is supposed to raise PH, maybe thats what I was aiming at, not the TA. I seem to be concerned about my high CYA right now, I don't want to dump 10k from my pool at about 5.16 per 1000 gallons but will if it is worth the $50. I will need to lower the CYA so that I can shock it, with TX being a little colder, the algae has not been really evident in the last week.
    20K gallon IG Gunite-pebble w/ raised spa/waterfall, Hayward 6020 DE filter, unknown pool/spa/waterfall pump, unknown blower blower, LPG heater, Ultrapure Ozonator 25, 2004, Dallas TX

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    If the drops from the R-0009 titrant bottle are not well-formed and seem small or squirting out, then you may need to wipe the dropper tip with a moist cloth to remove static electricity. Otherwise, you will get a false high reading for the test. The same is true for other tests, such as the Calcium Hardness (CH) test.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    PH went up to 7.5, TA went from 175-80. NO joke...but I am new to this so my chemistry may be a little off at this point. I guess soda ash is supposed to raise PH, maybe thats what I was aiming at, not the TA. I seem to be concerned about my high CYA right now, I don't want to dump 10k from my pool at about 5.16 per 1000 gallons but will if it is worth the $50. I will need to lower the CYA so that I can shock it, with TX being a little colder, the algae has not been really evident in the last week.
    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    If the drops from the R-0009 titrant bottle are not well-formed and seem small or squirting out, then you may need to wipe the dropper tip with a moist cloth to remove static electricity. Otherwise, you will get a false high reading for the test. The same is true for other tests, such as the Calcium Hardness (CH) test.
    Richard - is your point that the 175 reading might have been false? I remember reading that the bottles "broke in" and that the static concerns were higher at the start of a new bottle.
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
    Hayward SuperPump (model ?), Polaris 380 & PB4 Booster Pump

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    I wonder if I am doing the CYA improper, I shake for 30 seconds them squirt it directly into the small comparator tube from the bottle. I squirt a few drops at a time while looking in the tube for the black dot. I fill it up until I cannot visually see the black dot. This test to me is very loose in terms of the user. I am new, maybe since I am close to Leslies pool supply I should take a sample in just to see what they are coming up with...
    20K gallon IG Gunite-pebble w/ raised spa/waterfall, Hayward 6020 DE filter, unknown pool/spa/waterfall pump, unknown blower blower, LPG heater, Ultrapure Ozonator 25, 2004, Dallas TX

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by UnderWaterVanya
    Richard - is your point that the 175 reading might have been false? I remember reading that the bottles "broke in" and that the static concerns were higher at the start of a new bottle.
    Yes, I was thinking that the 175 reading might have been false. The static electricity can build up at any time, not just when new. It depends on the humidity in the air.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    I wonder if I am doing the CYA improper, I shake for 30 seconds them squirt it directly into the small comparator tube from the bottle. I squirt a few drops at a time while looking in the tube for the black dot. I fill it up until I cannot visually see the black dot. This test to me is very loose in terms of the user. I am new, maybe since I am close to Leslies pool supply I should take a sample in just to see what they are coming up with...
    There are videos on YouTube that help. Remember, keys are: direct sunlight behind you, tube at waist level, you can pour the solution back in the dropper bottle if you need to do it again at least for a few minutes.

    Also don't obsess over it the test accuracy rate is around +/- 15ppm and my understanding is that the FC/CYA chart has enough leeway built in that it doesn't matter that the test can be off by 15ppm.


    Sent via Tapatalk...
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
    Hayward SuperPump (model ?), Polaris 380 & PB4 Booster Pump

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    I wonder if I am doing the CYA improper, I shake for 30 seconds them squirt it directly into the small comparator tube from the bottle. I squirt a few drops at a time while looking in the tube for the black dot. I fill it up until I cannot visually see the black dot. This test to me is very loose in terms of the user.
    UWV hit all the trouble spots for ya.
    This is very helpful also.
    MONITORING CYA STABILIZER IN OUTDOOR POOLS & SPAS
    It's a different block, from a commercially packaged Taylor kit, but it's the same idea.

    This one has much larger pictures, but less information.
    WHY MONITOR CYANURIC ACID?
    I should point out, that at least on my monitor, that last picture shows the dot as not quite fully obscured yet. You want that puppy, gone, gone, gone. It helps to take your eyes away from it, then look back again. Also starring for 3-4 seconds to be sure it's gone. There's going to likely be sun glare on the meniscus (concave curved) surface of the water in the sample tube, don't let that fool you into thinking there' still a dot.

    Have you tried the dilute method I have posted earlier?
    Also, make sure your sample water is at 70deg F. min. If not, let it warm up 1st.

    Quote Originally Posted by tracy070
    I am new, maybe since I am close to Leslies pool supply I should take a sample in just to see what they are coming up with...
    I wouldn't advise this, it will only confuse you with misinformation. Pool stores are notoriously inaccurate. CYA being their worst one!!
    Like UWV said, there's a pretty wide tolerance with the test anyway, not to mention the CYA/Chlorine chart accounts for this with each CYA number.
    Thanks for reading... - Tony
    Da' Pool: Intex 15'x42" 3284gal AGP EasySet (Inflatable Ring) - (Summer 2014: 27' round EW /w 6.5' deep end @ 22,500gal)
    Pump & Cart Mod: 1000gph Cart. 5ft² - 2 nylons, 24/7 OP. Traps bugs/bits, lasts longer/cleans easier = Happier Pool Owner!!
    The Bible for a "Trouble Free Pool" life = PoolSchool, the BBB method a TF100 test kit(Recommend Kits Compared). - Cleaning a Sand Filter
    Water looks like GLASS, if yours doesn't...SLAM IT! Feels nice and never been happier!!! :D

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    This should help and is exactly how we do it, same kit too.
    I suggest watching it in HD so you can see it better.
    [youtube:2fn6sn5l]NxaqoW-_MCs[/youtube:2fn6sn5l]
    Thanks for reading... - Tony
    Da' Pool: Intex 15'x42" 3284gal AGP EasySet (Inflatable Ring) - (Summer 2014: 27' round EW /w 6.5' deep end @ 22,500gal)
    Pump & Cart Mod: 1000gph Cart. 5ft² - 2 nylons, 24/7 OP. Traps bugs/bits, lasts longer/cleans easier = Happier Pool Owner!!
    The Bible for a "Trouble Free Pool" life = PoolSchool, the BBB method a TF100 test kit(Recommend Kits Compared). - Cleaning a Sand Filter
    Water looks like GLASS, if yours doesn't...SLAM IT! Feels nice and never been happier!!! :D

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    It's important to get the lighting conditions right because that affects the visible outcome. It is best to have your back to the sun so that your body shades the tube which you hold in front of you with you looking down into the tube. This provides strong indirect light which was the lighting condition used when calibrating the tube. If it's a cloudy day, that's fine and should work so long as it's not very dark. Indoors is trickier unless the light is bright but diffuse.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    It's important to get the lighting conditions right because that affects the visible outcome. It is best to have your back to the sun so that your body shades the tube which you hold in front of your with you looking down into the tube. This provides strong indirect light which was the lighting condition used when calibrating the tube. If it's a cloudy day, that's fine and should work so long as it's not very dark. Indoors is trickier unless the light is bright but diffuse.

    I've tried on overcast days and my results drop by 10-15 ppm - rather than 45-50, I get 35-40. I recall cursing the clouds one day... the sun had been out until just after I mixed my solution!
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
    Hayward SuperPump (model ?), Polaris 380 & PB4 Booster Pump

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    y_not's Avatar
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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by UnderWaterVanya
    I've tried on overcast days and my results drop by 10-15 ppm - rather than 45-50, I get 35-40. I recall cursing the clouds one day... the sun had been out until just after I mixed my solution!
    I could see you out there cursing at the clouds.
    Thanks for reading... - Tony
    Da' Pool: Intex 15'x42" 3284gal AGP EasySet (Inflatable Ring) - (Summer 2014: 27' round EW /w 6.5' deep end @ 22,500gal)
    Pump & Cart Mod: 1000gph Cart. 5ft² - 2 nylons, 24/7 OP. Traps bugs/bits, lasts longer/cleans easier = Happier Pool Owner!!
    The Bible for a "Trouble Free Pool" life = PoolSchool, the BBB method a TF100 test kit(Recommend Kits Compared). - Cleaning a Sand Filter
    Water looks like GLASS, if yours doesn't...SLAM IT! Feels nice and never been happier!!! :D

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    UnderWaterVanya's Avatar
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    Re: New pool owner with some issues

    Quote Originally Posted by y_not
    Quote Originally Posted by UnderWaterVanya
    I've tried on overcast days and my results drop by 10-15 ppm - rather than 45-50, I get 35-40. I recall cursing the clouds one day... the sun had been out until just after I mixed my solution!
    I could see you out there cursing at the clouds.
    Were you hiding in the bushes?
    Sent via Tapatalk...
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
    Hayward SuperPump (model ?), Polaris 380 & PB4 Booster Pump

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