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Thread: Maintaining Pool Dilemma

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    Maintaining Pool Dilemma

    Backstory:
    Bought house in Las Vegas with Pool 6 years ago, immediately started using BBB and learned as I go. Did that for about 3 years and what was happening is I would always have pool issues, no algae that you could see but tests would show issues with the water. I would shock with tons of bleach and it would fix. I had issues using BBB because I after awhile I got tired of maintaining the pol on a daily basis and would slack. About 2 years ago I drained the pool to do a full acid wash. Refilled and continued BBB. The end of that summer and all last summer I decided to go the more conventional method of maintaining the pool with "Shock" and "Tablets". My thought process was "Well since nobody that I have ever talked to locally knows anything about using bleach and their pools are perfect why should I go through this much work to maintain my pool?" So I switched to Acid, "Shock" and "Tablets"

    Fast Forward:
    End of summer last year I started getting yellow Algae on the walls, tried to fix, pool temp dropped for winter and they were gone. Maintaining the pool this year and no signs of it until today. Bottom line is I got lazy again and missed my weekly "shock" treatment and didn;t even test my levels. Since my test chemicals are getting old I brought the water to the pool store to check the levels. And this what the guy says "Can I take your picture and put it on the wall? I have never seen water with this much CH EVER" He said you gotta do a full drain and refill.

    Dilemma:
    I am trying to understand how my CH levels have gone so crazy and why I need to drain and refill again. My first thought is I maintained the pool just fine for 3 years with Bleach and then I switched could that be the issue? Like I said before my issue with the Bleach is the DAILY maintenance. My 2nd issue is cost, I was going through 3-4 bottles of bleach per week, this was even wity upping my CYA to account for the extreme temps here in Las Vegas and the bleach burning off.

    Should I go back to Bleach after the refill?

    When I wasn't using bleach I kind of did my own thing, I didn't get advice from pool store. I would walk in and buy my bags of "shock" and acid and be on my way. I would measure levels and always keep then decent but I was never SUPER accurate with acid measuring, it just got to the point where I would know ABOUT what I needed to lower the pH to the level I needed after testing.

    Should I just straight listen to the pool store advice to maintain in the future? They are not the kind of pool store that recommends crazy amounts of other chemicals, in fact they don't recommend all that other stuff like algaecide.

    Last refill I did the Borax because I LOVE the way it looks and all of its other benefits, can I do this and use "shock"?

    What should I do?
    12,000 Gallon
    Hayward 2HP Pump
    Solar Panel
    TF-100 Kit
    Built 2004, bought Dec 2007
    BBB All the Way

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Maintaining Pool Dilemma

    There's a good chance the shock you were using was Calcium Hypochlorite, which adds about 7 CH for every 10 FC.

    Assuming its the 73% stuff, every one pound bag will add abpout 5 ppm CH. There's 260/ year. If you toss in two bags, that's 520 PPM/year. The fill water is probably 300ish to start, and if it's like my pool, figure another 25/week from evaporation. Suddenly, hitting 4 figures is not so hard to do.

    Have you considered a saltwater generator? Overall costs for the life of the setup are about the same as bleach, but it does relieve you of the daily maintenance. You could probably go every 2 or 3 days between testing.
    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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    elwood58's Avatar
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    Re: Maintaining Pool Dilemma

    The tablets you were using could also be Cal Hypo, which would add even more CH to your pool.
    19204 Gallon L Shape with a 10X10 2nd Step Baja Ledge. Intellichlor IC-40, IntellipH, Cartridge Filter, Pentair Heater/Chiller (Heat Pump). Tons of Deck with Deck Jets. Construction Complete 6/5/17.

    "If you don't measure it, you can't manage it!"

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    Re: Maintaining Pool Dilemma

    For a not so going DIY person how tough is a salt water generator to install?
    12,000 Gallon
    Hayward 2HP Pump
    Solar Panel
    TF-100 Kit
    Built 2004, bought Dec 2007
    BBB All the Way

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    harleysilo's Avatar
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    Re: Maintaining Pool Dilemma

    Quote Originally Posted by nitz369
    For a not so going DIY person how tough is a salt water generator to install?
    You either need to go with a SWG or one of those auto liquid chlorine dispensers. What kind of control system do you have for your pump/solar currently?

    I have a SWG and once you get it dialed in, meaning it's % run time for however long you run your pump on a daily basis there is basically nothing else to do. I check my chlorine levels daily, cause i like to, and found there really was no need to, i could have done it once during the week, and then FRI and SAT. The only time i've manually added chlorine is after a bunch of people came over and swam, later that night i checked my levels and decided to supplement the SWG with some bleach so i didn't mess with the balance in the SWG and Pump run time i had.

    Of course you have to add salt to the pool, i have not had any complaints about the salt in the pool.

    I've thought about adding Borax to the mix, but have yet to be convinced that it will make a huge difference.
    18'x43' Sport Pool
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Maintaining Pool Dilemma

    Quote Originally Posted by nitz369
    For a not so going DIY person how tough is a salt water generator to install?
    I wouldn't know. A lot depends on how tight your plumbing is configured. If you have long stretches of exposed pipe, it's probably really easy. I'm constantly draining and refilling my water to lower the CH, so I see no point in spending money on salt I will just pump out onto the lawn. But you can be sure if I wasn't dealing with that, I'd have a SWG.
    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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    jv92red's Avatar
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    Re: Maintaining Pool Dilemma

    Quote Originally Posted by nitz369
    For a not so going DIY person how tough is a salt water generator to install?
    Check out the Jandy Aquapure ei SWCG system. I don't have it (yet; pool build soon). Looks like a option where space is an issue for other units. Looks like a fairy straight forward install and there is a plug in 120V model as well.:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e7f5UqxRZyc
    15'x35' IG 16,500 gallons w/attached raised 18" spa continuous coping w/underneath spill and ledger stone wrapped, NPT mini pebble aqua blue w/2x pigment & abalone shell finish, 2"x24" travertine coping, 3x Jandy Color LED lights (2 in pool), Jandy Flo Pro 2HP VS pump, Jandy LXI (low NOx) 400K BTU heater, Jandy CL460 cartridge filter, Jandy AquaPure Ei SWG, Jandy Z4 automation with iAqualink and remote poolside PDA, 1,300 sqft Belgard Catalina paver deck with drainage, fire pit that matches the spa with travertine coping and wrapped in ledger stone, Elitewood insulated patio cover, Vinyl gates, back vinyl fence coming soon...
    TF-100

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    Swampwoman's Avatar
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    Re: Maintaining Pool Dilemma

    Should I go back to Bleach after the refill?
    IMHO, BBB is more about understanding the chemical balance requirements of your pool and avoiding the unintended consequences you just experienced by throwing in shock without regard to the amount of calcium you were adding.

    Whether you go back to liquid chlorine or install a saltwater generator really doesn't matter -- at the end of the day heading off problems, whether from cya build up of tablets, or from high calcium due to reliance on cal hypo shock, or whether from uncontrolled ph rise from untested/unattended swg -- will require a basic commitment to some kind of monitoring of your pool parameters.

    It's a habit that in the end will save you time For me, i go out with a coffee in the morning, listen to the birds, do a little measue, doe, and done -- and i am the type of person that normally resists committed maintenance, so i do understand where youre coming from

    That said, swg sounds like it may be more convenient for you, provided you keep an eye on the ph. For me, I didn't go salt because I don't really trust myself not to get lax about monitoring and I didn't want to have to maintain or fiddle with another device in a way, for me, it's easier to habituate to the monitoring if I have to do it consistently. I know that sounds strange.

    With respect to the pool store's recommendation to drain and refill, what were you levels when they suggested this?
    In ground extended Grecian, 22,000 gal, Hayward 220t sand filter, vinyl liner, dolphin m4 supreme.
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  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: Maintaining Pool Dilemma

    Quote Originally Posted by Swampwoman
    Should I go back to Bleach after the refill?
    IMHO, BBB is more about understanding the chemical balance requirements of your pool and avoiding the unintended consequences you just experienced by throwing in shock without regard to the amount of calcium you were adding.

    Whether you go back to liquid chlorine or install a saltwater generator really doesn't matter -- at the end of the day heading off problems, whether from cya build up of tablets, or from high calcium due to reliance on cal hypo shock, or whether from uncontrolled ph rise from untested/unattended swg -- will require a basic commitment to some kind of monitoring of your pool parameters.

    It's a habit that in the end will save you time For me, i go out with a coffee in the morning, listen to the birds, do a little measue, doe, and done -- and i am the type of person that normally resists committed maintenance, so i do understand where youre coming from

    That said, swg sounds like it may be more convenient for you, provided you keep an eye on the ph. For me, I didn't go salt because I don't really trust myself not to get lax about monitoring and I didn't want to have to maintain or fiddle with another device in a way, for me, it's easier to habituate to the monitoring if I have to do it consistently. I know that sounds strange.

    With respect to the pool store's recommendation to drain and refill, what were you levels when they suggested this?
    Stenner pump is the other option. The fixed rate pump costs about $220, you will need a timer (I bought a cheap$20 home depot one) and a bleach container (I think I paid around $20 from the brewers warehouse mentioned in the liquidator forum). The pump comes with all the fittings you need to tap into your plumbing. You will need to make the correct size hole. My plumbing came with a screw in attachment point already so I didnt have to drill at all.

    I use about .6 gallons per day in texas, the tank holds about 15 gallons. I refill every 2-3 weeks. I dont think the pump can get the last few inches of bleach on the bottom.
    17,800 gallon, IG pool, 595 sq feet (17x35x4.5 avg rectangle), Hayward 525 cartridge filter, diamondbrite, 2 hp 2 speed hayward tristar filter, Stenner 45mhp10 automatically chlorinating

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