I've been reading your board off and on for a few years and I feel overwhelmed! I finally fired my pool service last Spring after having 4 different companies, not doing what we felt we were paying for. I did fine, last Spring--through the summer and through the winter. I have had very high phosphates, but I've read that is not necessarily a problem. The pool sparkled, but for minor problems, which I solved. And I thought all was ok, till now. The ducks visit in the Spring and usually leave after awhile. One year they did not, but I still had a sparkling pool (my first pool service that was wonderful till they gave me a new guy).t
This winter was unusually bad for debris from trees. I had a hard time keeping up. My pool is a 20k gallon, fiberglass. New fiberglass and equipment installed when we moved here 4 years ago. I have a cartridge filter system.
I'm in N. California and the 90 degree weather just started. I have been using Leslie's chlorination tabs in a feeder container, and their power powder (shock).
I am going to buy a new test kit because both of the ones I use are not good enough. I am not sure which iis better the Taylor 2006 or the other one you mentioned. I can get the Taylor cheaper and it is a FAS-DPD.
My cheap test kit was not able to give me any usable information because my values are out of range. I had to use my strips. Yesterday I noticed that there was a little algae on one side of the pool, so I tested and found I had 0--FC
I put two scoops of power powder in and ran the filter 8 hours as recommended. Today the algae looked a little better but not gone, so I put in 2 more scoops of power powder as recommended, turned the filter on and when I came back a few hours later my water was green! and it looks like the algae is getting worse.
I called Leslie's and they told me that I needed to adjust my PH and shock some more and when I mentioned the ducks they told me I would have to drain the water to get rid of the nitrates. (They presumed nitrates, and said I should come in and they would test)
Well...I remembered reading here that a properly balanced pool will allow me not to worry so much about phosphates. Also, I co-existed happily with ducks every other year, so why should that change now? I sure hope I can do this without terrorizing them.
I just re-tested the pool (with my strips) and here are the values:
FC (Free Chlorine) - 5
Total Chlorine - 20
pH - below 6.2 (not accurate enough to say how far)
TA - below 6.2 (not accurate enough to say how far)
CH - below 6.2 (not accurate enough to say how far)
I was hoping you could offer which steps to take right now. I don't want to wait and let it get out of control, bu I don't want to go to the pool store and buy more potentially self defeating chems (I read the pool school info). I'm just a little nervous about taking this big step. Also, I feel silly saying this but I'm a tad intimidated by your pool calculator.
Thank you so much--