We bought a new house in April that has a small 5300 gallon in-ground pool, see avatar. We live just south of Nashville TN, and the pool has never been closed for the winter. The previous 2 owners just let it run all winter, I understand it is a common practice here in TN where things don't freeze that much.
Pump was set to run 24/7 as the previous owner had moved out of town. Anyway the day we moved in (4/6) my kids just had to get into the pool which was clear and looked OK to me so I said go for it, but warned them it was pretty cold.
They had a short swim which satisfied them.
4/6 added 2-3 inches of water per-recommendation of previous owner as it was getting low.
4/7 The 1/4 inch flex lines to the chlorine feeder broke and the pump drained to the pool to the bottom of the skimmer (no floor drain in the pool)
I repaired that and put about 5 inches of water in again.
4/11- I took a water sample to a pool store and found may of the levels to be low FC-0 CC-0 PH-6.7 TA-0 CYA-36 Calcium Hardness 152
4/13-4/15 - Raised TA and CH by adding chemicals bought at pool store ($25)
4/16 - Added "conditioner" (stabilizer) about 1-2 pounds tried to mix with water it did not really dissolve. added second half about 4 hours later. This chemical was left by the previous owner.
4/17 - Water tested again at pool store: FC-0 CC-0 PH-7.8 TA-110 CYA-45 CH-150
Shocked with 1 bag of 'ShockWave' from pool store and remain CH from 4/13 (total 5 lbs)
4/21 - tested water with AquaChek Test strip FC still 0 - Shocked again with 2nd bag of 'ShockWave' from pool store.
4/28 - Started to suspect the Hayward CL220 chlorine feeder was not working, did some quick diagnostic work but did not determine much
5/10 - Test at pool store FC-0 TC-0 CC-0 ph-7.6 TA-56 CYA-30 CH-248 added 7 cups of baking soda to raise TA
5/11 - Total disassemble of Chlorine feeder discovered no water coming into the feeder, and bottom of feed caked with about 1 inch of chlorine, attempted to remove the chlorine stuck to the bottom by chipping it out. Keep feeder disconnected plan to take to pool store for advise.
I had discovered TFP on the 9th and begain reading, do more reading on BBB method.
5/12 - Bought some 8.25% bleach and poured about 2/3 of a 128 oz bottle in that evening
5/13 Took Chlorine feeder to pol store got little to no help other than they said keep cleaning out the junk in the bottom. Took it home and cleaned it, then discovered the incoming fitting was a check valve swapped incoming and outgoing fittings so water can flow in and can not back flow in from the output side. Installed the feeder again and put in some pucks, set to FULL. That evening I shocked pool several times (still testing with AquaCheck test strips between) ended up putting in about 15-20 oz of shock over 3 applications based on test strip results.
5/14 Morning I finally had a chlorine reading on my test strips (about 1)
5/15 Morning check with test strips FC-5 PH-8(aprox) TA-150 CYA-30-50 (the range specified for that color)
The water has always been clear I've seen it be a bit hazy on rainy days (we had 2-3 days of rain in a row) since we've moved in
My kids are hoping to swim Friday night this week, there is a Jandy heat pump on the system that so far I have not turned on and the water is by-passing it. Will probably turn it on tomorrow to raise the water temp a bit it's been around 75 per the thermometer in the pool. Anyone got any idea how long it will take the Jandy to warm the water up?
So with that history here are my questions:
What do I do now, I know I need to order a test kit plan to do that ASAP so I can better monitor all of this.
How often/long should my pump run (Specs in my signature)?
I like the idea of the BBB method and plan to go that route, so I assume I should turn the chlorine feeder to off so it is not adding chlorine on a regular basis?
When would it be appropriated/necessary to run the chlorine feeder? Vacation, out of town for a day or 2?
Pump system has a Nature 2 Express cartridge on it, previous owner said he liked it and that it allowed him to keep the Chlorine lower (feeder was not working as far as I can tell). What are your thoughts or suggestions on it? Do I spend $70 on a new cartridge or not? If not do I simply remove the existing cartridge and just leave the housing empty?
Why was this pool not green when I bought the house if it is has no chlorine for an extended time? Did the Nature 2 have enough residue in it (it was from last season as I understand) to maintain the pool?
Thanks is advance,