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Thread: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

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    Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Hi all! My name says it all. We bought a house with an IG pool 3 years ago. I had a pool guy taking care of it, then just when the pool turned green, he suddenly stopped showing up. I've taken over the care and maintenance of the pool and have been trying to learn all the ins and outs, but there is so much conflicting info out there that my head is swimming. Now if I could just get the pool cleared up so the rest of me could swim, too!
    I've read through the Pool School and have already gotten some great info there.
    I have a 6 way test kit from Walmart, but didn't really trust the results, so I took the water to Leslie's to be tested.

    FAC: 0
    TAC: 0
    CH: 600
    CYA: 0
    TA: 100
    pH: 7.7
    Pho: 100

    I removed and cleaned the filter cartridges, ordered new ones and I'm currently waiting on them to be delivered. Turns out that the pool guy NEVER cleaned or replaced them in the last 3 years.
    Obviously I need to add conditioner/stabilizer and lots of chlorine, but I don't know how long I should wait between. Do I add it all at once? The water is clear (you can see the bottom of the pool), but there's algae on the walls and steps. The pool gets a lot of direct sunlight, if that makes any difference. I just don't know where to start! I hope somebody here can HELP!
    Thanks!
    12K gal, IG pebble, 1HP Hayward cartridge filter C4020CP, waterfall, Hayward basic automatic vac.

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    jcowart's Avatar
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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    First of all. Welcome.

    If you really want to take care of your pool, do your self a favor and get a good test kit. The TF100 would be the best bet or the Taylor 2006. They use the same regents but the TF100 you get more of the ones you use the most. Very few pool stores care the kit. I only have one in my area and they wanted like $90 for it. Order it for way less and it's the same kit. Once you have the kit, learn how to use it and trust your results. Then come back and post a full set of numbers and you will get all the help you will need. This site teaches you how to learn "YOUR" pools personality. They are all just a little different and once you learn it you only put what the POOL needs at that time. You say your PB did not clean your carts, I think he might but just did not get new ones. They should last a while. If you ordered new ones then keep the old. They are good to have if you need to clear a swamp and don't want to new use fresh filters. You came to the right place to take over your pool. I can't tell you the last time I "Shocked" my pool. Order your test kit and read pool school while your waiting, and good luck.
    17500 gallon Doughboy AGP, Hayward DE filter, waiting for the 1.5hp DB pump to go out.
    Learn to take the advice here and be trouble free or use the pool store's advice. "You can't do both and get very far"

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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Thanks for the welcome!
    I've ordered the test kit and I'm waiting for it to be delivered.
    12K gal, IG pebble, 1HP Hayward cartridge filter C4020CP, waterfall, Hayward basic automatic vac.

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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Welcome to the forum

    First confirm the CYA test before adding any. When you tested the CYA w/your kit, what was the result?

    If the pool has been run on pucks/tabs it could have high CYA. Pool stores are kinda bad at the CYA test

    I would not add anything other than bleach/liquid chlorine until I could confirm the CYA test.

    Which test kit did you order? When will it arrive?
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

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    Will it ever get better?

    Hi! I'm new to the forum and I'm struggling to get a handle on my pool. I had a pool guy taking care of it for me. Then one day the pool started turning green and the pool guy seems to have fallen off the face of the earth, so I decided to try to maintain the pool, myself. I learned how to remove and clean the cartridge filters, which looked like they hadn't been cleaned or changed at all in the last 3 years. I've already ordered new cartridges so I can replace the old ones as soon as I get rid of the algae.
    I've read through the Pool School and I think I have a better understanding of what chemicals I need.
    I had the water tested at a pool supply store yesterday while I wait for my test kit to arrive. I also have a 6 way hth test kit.
    The results from the pool store:
    FAC 0
    TAC 0
    CH 600
    CYA 0
    TA 100
    pH 7.7
    TDS 100

    The pool was clear (I could see to the bottom of the pool) but green.
    I turned on the pump, brushed the entire pool, added 4 lbs. stabilizer/conditioner and 3 lbs. of powdered shock (cal-hypo) last night. Tested chlorine levels at above 5 (the test kit I currently have doesn't go any higher).
    Got up this morning and the pool is a swamp! I tested the chlorine levels again and they've dropped to 1 overnight.
    I didn't test the CYA because the directions on the bottle said I should wait 48 hours to test again.
    Should I add more CYA? Or should I just keep adding chlorine?
    Will my pool ever be blue again?
    This has been going on for weeks now, and I'm getting a little frustrated. This is starting to get expensive and I don't want to keep pouring good money after bad.
    12K gal, IG pebble, 1HP Hayward cartridge filter C4020CP, waterfall, Hayward basic automatic vac.

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Will it ever get better?

    Welcome to tfp, overwhelmedinAZ

    Quote Originally Posted by overwhelmedinAZ
    Will my pool ever be blue again?
    Yes

    Unfortunately, the results from the pool store may nor may not be correct. Do you have results from the HTH 6-way drop based test?

    Quote Originally Posted by overwhelmedinAZ
    I didn't test the CYA because the directions on the bottle said I should wait 48 hours to test again.
    Do you have a result from the HTH kit? Have you added cya yet and how much?

    Quote Originally Posted by overwhelmedinAZ
    This is starting to get expensive and I don't want to keep pouring good money after bad.
    Then I would wait for your kit to be most efficient.
    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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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Will it ever get better?

    Stop!! Don't add any more "shock". You're just driving up the CH which will be a problem in AZ just from the hard water.

    You've added stabilizer to get you to 40. Therefore, shock level is 15. Assuming the pool store test was correct for CYA. You need to add bleach - plain ol' Chlorox - to the tune of 2 gallons and change - that's more than 2 of the new 121 oz jugs. And then every couple hours, add more to keep it at 15. You already have a problem - your tester won't read to 15... you're sorta stalled until your kit arrives.

    Have you read Pool School?

    You've already stopped throwing good money after bad by getting rid of the pool guy. Follow our methods and you will be spending money wisely from now on.

    Welcome
    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: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Hi Butterfly!
    I tested with an hth 6 way test kit that gave me a 0 first. I didn't trust those results so I took a sample to Leslie's Pool. The results they got pretty much matched up with the results I got with my kit. The only difference was my kit tested the pH at 7.2, and their test said it was 7.7.
    I ordered the test kit at the same time I ordered the filter cartridges, so I hope it arrives by the end of the week.
    12K gal, IG pebble, 1HP Hayward cartridge filter C4020CP, waterfall, Hayward basic automatic vac.

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Will it ever get better?

    You need to stop using cal-hypo immediately. Your CH is way above the recommended range and cal-hypo will only cause it to keep going up. Start using liquid chlorine, either 8.25% plain bleach from your grocery store or the liquid chlorine sold at pool stores. Do not add any more CYA until you are able to test the current levels.

    Normally we recommend a partial drain and refill for CH levels as high as yours, but it can be managed if you keep the pH around 7.2 and the TA 70-90 to avoid calcium scale.

    Please read through Pool School especially shocking your pool and [url=http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-school/defeating_algae] defeating algae.
    TFP Moderator
    Helpful links: TF Test Kits,TFP Pool School, PoolMath
    Vogue 21' round AG, Pentair 1 hp 2 speed pump, 36 sq ft DE filter, Hayward S180T 150# sand filter, Houston, Texas
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    Re: Will it ever get better?

    This has been going on for weeks now
    Yes, but all that was before you found TFP.

    You should start re-reading Pool School. From your post it does not appear you have grasped the concepts we teach and the importance of the different parameters you test for.

    read "The ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry" up in Pool School. When that all makes sense to you, then you should read "How to Shock Your Pool". because that's what you will need to do as soon as your kit gets to you.

    We don't want to fix your pool, we want to TEACH you how to fix your own pool so you will never rely on the pool store or pool man again.

    I tested the chlorine levels again and they've dropped to 1 overnight.
    That's perfectly normal because, from pool school you learn that chlorine is consumed by sunlight and organics in your pool....nothing else but those two things.

    You have started protecting the chlorine from the sun because that's what the stabilizer does. It's there but doesn't show up on the test.

    So, your next step will be to add more chlorine tonight but PLEASE STOP USING CAL_HYPO because your CH is too high now and you are only making it worse. Use bleach.

    Put in about 2 gallons....it, too, will be gone tomorrow because the organics in your pool are consuming it.

    Then do the same thing tomorrow night. Do the same thing every night until you get your kit.

    Once your test kit arrives (when do you expect it?) you can start the shock process but I want to tell you up front, you are going to use an absolute ton of bleach and if you are not willing to see this through to the end with gallons and gallons and gallons of bleach, you should probably never start.

    Don't be fainthearted and give up. Thousands of us on here and been through the same issues. You can fix your pool but you have to commit to learning how and jumping in with both feet.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    jcowart's Avatar
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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Quote Originally Posted by overwhelmedinAZ
    I ordered the test kit at the same time I ordered the filter cartridges.
    What test kit did you order. You really need one that does FAS-DPD. Most places have the OTO or DPD test. The FAS will give you an accurate FC and CC number. TFtestkits might have just the FAS-DPD test kit. If not then I know they have the taylor cylinder and FAS-DPD powder and regents.
    If you know you are low on CYA then I would add that to get you up to about 30ppm. You can get that at walmart in the purple top. Goto poolcalculator and fill in all your pool info and it will tell you how much to add. Put it in a kneehigh and tie it to the ladder or something. It will take about a week to dissolve. Then you can work on your other chemicals.
    17500 gallon Doughboy AGP, Hayward DE filter, waiting for the 1.5hp DB pump to go out.
    Learn to take the advice here and be trouble free or use the pool store's advice. "You can't do both and get very far"

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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    AZ,
    I merged your two threads as you were getting duplicate responses. The sequence is not perfect but you will do better now if we keep all information in this one thread.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh
    AZ,
    I merged your two threads as you were getting duplicate responses. The sequence is not perfect but you will do better now if we keep all information in this one thread.
    Thanks! I was confused there for a minute.

    I ordered the TF-100 through Pool Supply World.
    I will stop using the shock powder immediately. It was just what I had and I was afraid that if I didn't do SOMETHING, the pool would take on a life of it's own, rise up in revolt in the middle of the night, and eat us all in our sleep!
    I have a couple gallons of 10% bleach that I will dump in tonight and will go pick up 10 more gallons to keep on hand.
    12K gal, IG pebble, 1HP Hayward cartridge filter C4020CP, waterfall, Hayward basic automatic vac.

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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Quote Originally Posted by overwhelmedinAZ
    It was just what I had and I was afraid that if I didn't do SOMETHING, the pool would take on a life of it's own, rise up in revolt in the middle of the night, and eat us all in our sleep!
    Oh, you are so right! Ignore your flowers and they die. Ignore your pool and it comes alive
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

    ~ One should not use a sledge hammer to swat a mosquito. ~

    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Hi guys.
    Pool is still green, but I can see the bottom step today, so that's progress, I guess??
    I'm still waiting on my TF100 test kit, so I'm doing the best I can with what I have, and used the hth test kit.
    Here's my results from this morning:

    TAC .5
    CH 600
    CYA 30
    TA 110
    pH 7.2

    I poured 2 gallons of bleach in the pool last night to bring the chlorine levels well above 5 (the liquid was almost orange). The pump normally runs at 8 psi, but is currently at 12 psi, so I'm going to pull the cartridges out and clean them.
    Feeling a bit frustrated today, and I'm beginning to wonder if I should just drain the pool and start over. Maybe I'm expecting too much too soon.
    So far the only one enjoying the pool is the dog.
    12K gal, IG pebble, 1HP Hayward cartridge filter C4020CP, waterfall, Hayward basic automatic vac.

  16. Back To Top    #16
    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Quote Originally Posted by overwhelmedinAZ
    Hi guys.
    Pool is still green, but I can see the bottom step today, so that's progress, I guess??
    I'm still waiting on my TF100 test kit, so I'm doing the best I can with what I have, and used the hth test kit.
    Here's my results from this morning:

    TAC .5
    CH 600
    CYA 30
    TA 110
    pH 7.2

    I poured 2 gallons of bleach in the pool last night to bring the chlorine levels well above 5 (the liquid was almost orange). The pump normally runs at 8 psi, but is currently at 12 psi, so I'm going to pull the cartridges out and clean them.
    Feeling a bit frustrated today, and I'm beginning to wonder if I should just drain the pool and start over. Maybe I'm expecting too much too soon.
    So far the only one enjoying the pool is the dog.
    If I read the post history correctly, you just started the process two days ago. Correct?

    It didn't turn green in two days, it will take longer than two days to clear it.
    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!

  17. Back To Top    #17

    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    Patience has never been one of my virtues, Richard.
    But I'm trying!
    Took the cartridges out and cleaned them. Those suckers were NASTY! I think I'll wait until the algae is gone before I put the new ones in.
    I keep going back to Pool School and re-reading. The more I read, the more I realize that I've been going at this the wrong way.
    I've been following the 4 step program (test & balance, sanitize, shock weekly, add algaecide) and all it's gotten me is an empty wallet and a green pool.
    I'm gonna stick with the methods here. They actually make more sense.

    I do have a question about adding bleach every hour. The pool gets hit with direct sunlight for most of the day. I know that sunlight breaks down bleach very quickly, so I always add bleach after sunset. Is it a waste of bleach to pour it in every hour with the direct sun hitting it? Or is it being consumed by the algae so quickly that it doesn't really matter?
    12K gal, IG pebble, 1HP Hayward cartridge filter C4020CP, waterfall, Hayward basic automatic vac.

  18. Back To Top    #18
    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    With your cya level of 30 ppm, you should have adequate sun protection so that much of your chlorine is fighting the algae. If you don't keep it up during the day, the algae growth can rebound and you could be stuck in a seesaw battle of killing algae at night and growing back in the daytime.
    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.

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    OMG!!!! The pool is not green this morning!!! I'm so excited!!! There may be a light at the end of this tunnel, after all!

    First, here are the test results from today:

    FAC 1
    TAC 1
    CH 600
    CYA 30
    TA 100
    pH 7.2

    I've been using the pool calculator and my cheapy hth test kit (still waiting for my TF100) to keep the bleach levels up. I brushed the pool every time I added bleach. I cleaned the cartridges twice yesterday and will clean them again today, as the psi has gone back up to 14.
    I can still see a couple of patches of algae, so I will keep the bleach at shock level and brush, brush, brush. But the water is almost crystal clear. I can see the bottom of my pool again and it's not all slimy and gross!

    Thank you all SO MUCH! Before I found this forum, I was ready to drain the pool and fill it with rocks.
    12K gal, IG pebble, 1HP Hayward cartridge filter C4020CP, waterfall, Hayward basic automatic vac.

  20. Back To Top    #20

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    Re: Hi! I'm OverwhelmedinAZ!

    so I will keep the bleach at shock level
    Your FC should've been dosed immediately back to 12 ppm or so minutes after you got the test result of 1 ppm.

    KEEP THE CHLORINE AT SHOCK VALUE and your pool will clear much faster. (sorry to sound like a bully but it is very important)
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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