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Thread: Brand new to TFP

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    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    Davenport, FL
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    Brand new to TFP

    Hi Everyone! (Apologies in advance for a long post)

    I found this forum while searching for a way to try and find a cheaper/better way to care for my pool. I've owned the house (and the pool that came with it) since 2009, and so far, the pool has survived on a steady diet of chlorine tablets, advice from the local Pool $tore, and 2-3 yearly treatments of green-to-clean. So far already for 2013, it's been treated 3 times, and we haven't even gotten to the summer.

    Before I found this site, I really didn't know anything about pool care. I really still don't. And, more than that, I'm a lazy pool owner. My idea of pool testing is to dip a test strip in the water every few days, and/or take a sample to the pool store every 2 weeks or so.

    My pool information is in my signature, and there's a picture of my pump equipment later on in this post. (I never use the heater ... too expensive). The pool doesn't get used terribly frequently, maybe 3 or 4 times a year, although, if I can get the water cleaned up, I'd like to use it more often.

    Right now, the pool is looking a little on the green side, and there is some visible algae near the stairs. (See picture).

    I'd like to start with the BBB system, and try to get the pool back to looking "swimmable". I know that I'll need to do quite a bit of reading, and invest more time than I have been. Realistically, how much time do you think will be needed on a daily/weekly basis? Right now, I've got some liquid chlorine, some muriatic acid, and some tri-chlor pucks (that I really don't want to use) ... what other chemicals should I add to my arsenal? I'm also thinking (probably a year or two out) about a Salt Water Chlorine generator. Useful investment, or a waste of money?

    I stopped by the pool store today, here are my test results. Where do I begin?
    Free Chlorine: 5
    Total Chlorine: 5
    Calcium Hardness: 450
    Cyanuric Acid: 60
    Total Alkalinity: 110
    pH: 7.6
    Phosphates: 300

    (I'm also not quite sure about the 7500 gallon figure, but the Pool Calculator seems to agree, based on the dimensions of the pool as measured below)



    Central Florida | 7500 gal | Inground | 1HP Motor | 75 SqFt Cartridge Filter

  2. Back To Top    #2

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    Howell, NJ
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    Re: Brand new to TFP

    You need to first get a good test kit. Either the TF-100 or K-2006 from tftestkits.net. After you get the kit and do your own tests, you will need to follow the shock process detailed in Pool School (upper right). While you are waiting for the kit, read up on clearing algae threads and keep your FC up with liquid chlorine or bleach. You will want to keep your chlorine above 5 ppm all the time, if your CYA is truly 60. As to how long it takes to maintain the pool... While shocking you should be out testing and dosing chlorine every hour if possible. After the pool is clear, it takes maybe 5 minutes a day to test, add chlorine and adjust pH, if necessary.
    John
    7 year old ~13,500 gal 24' AGP with 1.5 hp Proline pump, 150 sqft Pleatco cartridge, filled with well water with pH of about 4.5.
    Wanda the Whale pool vacuum, home made heater, Taylor K-2006
    Cloudy Pool? 1) Order test kit. 2) Follow SLAM
    New to TFPC? Read Pool School a few times, then post questions. PoolMath will help with chemical additions.

  3. Back To Top    #3
    linen's Avatar
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    Jul 2010
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    Twin Cities, MN
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    Re: Brand new to TFP

    Welcome to tfp, SyracuseWolvrine

    My calculations gives me about 5500 gallons for your pool.

    Quote Originally Posted by SyracuseWolvrine
    Realistically, how much time do you think will be needed on a daily/weekly basis?
    Once you get up and running on the methods here...5 minutes a day, and maybe 20 minutes more once a week. If you maintian per our recommendations, then you avoid problems and that keeps you in the pool and not troubleshooting the pool.

    Quote Originally Posted by SyracuseWolvrine
    I'm also thinking (probably a year or two out) about a Salt Water Chlorine generator. Useful investment, or a waste of money?
    Useful, but not necessary. Will not save you money, but won't cost much more either.

    Quote Originally Posted by SyracuseWolvrine
    I stopped by the pool store today, here are my test results. Where do I begin?
    First, get your own test kit. Pool store results are very unreliable and you want to be able to test daily. See this pool school article: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...pool_chemicals

    With that said, ignore the phosphate test result since with a properly chlorinated pool can have very high phosphates without issue. Other than that, you CH is a little high as is your cya, but both are liveable. See this pool school article: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...mmended_levels

    I would hesitate to do too much with those test values since they may not be correct (pool stores get the cya test wrong more than right) and get you own test kit.
    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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    Smykowski's Avatar
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    Re: Brand new to TFP

    Welcome to TFP!! I got some serious deja vu reading your first post, because I was in exactly your shoes 18 months ago.

    The only thing I'd add to the above is do not stray from the advice you get here. You can do it our way, or you can do it the pool store way, but you can't do both.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
    The most important article on this site - The ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Brand new to TFP

    What they said, get a good test kit ( see my signature for the TF-100 link), while waiting for it to get in, read over the pool school link in the upper right corner, take a break and read it again, most people get a lot more out of it the second time around. Once you get your test kit in, run your own tests and post the results and we will try to get things going for you. Sure some pool store tests are better than others, but in our overall experience if you take a water sample split it into 3 parts take to 3 pool stores you will get 3 very different set of test results.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
    ~Remember TFP counts on your donations to keep this site ad free~

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    Davenport, FL
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    Re: Brand new to TFP

    Thanks for the welcomes. I will be looking at the test kits and purchasing one before the end of the weekend.

    Once I get the test kit ... should every test be done every time I test? Are there some tests that should be done more frequently? Is weekly good, or more often?

    (I'm sure I'll have more questions as time goes by)
    Central Florida | 7500 gal | Inground | 1HP Motor | 75 SqFt Cartridge Filter

  7. Back To Top    #7
    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Brand new to TFP

    You do not have to do all the tests all the time. Here is a general schedule when the pool is clean:
    pool-school/basic_pool_care_schedule
    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
    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Brand new to TFP

    The link Jason provided is a good starting point, but each pool is different, once you get the hang things it is likely you can drop down to testing the basic stuff (probably pH and Chlorine, maybe even just Chlorine if your lucky enough to have relatively stable pH) 2 or 3 times per week, then a more complete test every week or two. Again depending on the pool, hardness of fill water, and the overall trends you may find that some tests like CH can be dropped to every 2 or 3 months, but this is only after you have established a long term trend.

    Ike

    p.s. Personally I would move checking filter pressure to the daily or every other day routine instead of weekly
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
    ~Remember TFP counts on your donations to keep this site ad free~

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