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Thread: Good test kit / bad test kit

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    Good test kit / bad test kit

    Split from here. JasonLion

    You can do it with a bad test kit. I did. However it should make the process much much easier. I literally just ordered one myself. No one thinks you're stupid. Try not to get too emotionally connected to this problem. You'll solve it and once you do you'll feel great.

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    Get test kit / bad test kit

    You can do it with a bad test kit.
    I guess it's pretty easy to assume I have an agenda in that we make a "good" kit (I'd like to think, anyway) but I don't understand suggesting a "bad" kit.

    This forum is chock full of green, cloudy pool failures largely because people have never realized the importance of accurate testing and what that testing implies.

    Let me say it shorter...this forum is chock full of FAILURES that invariably revolve around poor testing.

    Pages and Pages and Pages of them over the years!

    I am at a lost why you would suggest a "bad" kit will help someone who has come to this forum at least partly because "bad" testing is what drove them here in the first place.

    It's fine with all of us that you succeeded with your kit but it is troublesome to me that you advocate it's use to others.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Pool still green and cloudy! HELP!

    I didn't suggest a bad kit ever, I didn't imply it, I didnt explicitly say it. In fact I recommended to get one as I just purchased one because itll make life easier. Regardless I did it time and again with a standard walmart kit hence you can in fact get it right with a bad kit but following good advice. For the op I would have taken a sample into a pool store for cya and started straight away rather than wait a few days as the algae reaches its terminal population.

    I also doubt any kit gives you bad testing to the point of failure. Ill bet dollars to donuts its people not knowing what to do, using the wrong chemicals, apathy, slow to act, not making the time because we all know that even with perfect numbers bad things can happen. Having perfectly accurate numbers will do zero good if you wait too long to act, use the wrong equipment, and/or the wrong chemicals.

    To me this site is about knowledge not the best test kit in the world.

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    Re: Pool still green and cloudy! HELP!

    hence you can in fact get it right with a bad kit but following good advice
    Well, that's troublesome, too. How can you give "good" advice on this forum when the only reference you have comes from a "bad" kit who's results cannot be trusted?

    I also doubt any kit gives you bad testing to the point of failure
    Please read a bit more on the forum...it exists in numbers that used to surprise me but not anymore.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Pool still green and cloudy! HELP!

    Pfft. Chemist would laugh at that comment. Does your kit use a special reagent or something? Additional color ranges dont make your kit more accurate. If its the same reagent but a broader color match its only better in that you have something that matches the ranges you need. Wow. I should cancel my order.

    Is you phenol red. Superior? You hca ortho better somehow? Or are you using some different reagent?

    The proof is in the pudding. My pictures show it. I didny get lucky here I followed the pool calculator, the good advice here and my brain.

    Four times I had bad algae blooms each time because I screwed up on.maintance and my cya was horrible off the charts. All four times it took about 4 days to clear and I used, gasp.. an htc walmart pool test kit.

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    Re: Pool still green and cloudy! HELP!

    Quote Originally Posted by exceltoexcel
    Pfft. Chemist would laugh at that comment. Does your kit use a special reagent or something? Additional color ranges dont make your kit more accurate. If its the same reagent but a broader color match its only better in that you have something that matches the ranges you need. Wow. I should cancel my order.
    He's discussing the FAS-DPD test versus the OTO (yellow) or DPD (pink) color blocks.

    The FAS-DPD test can measure up to 50 PPM as fine as .2 increments.

    When you need to raise FC to 20, and the comparator only goes to 5, then what? Dilution? That adds a margin of error.

    The right tool for the job...A pair of pliers will tighten a nut, but we still have sized wrenches. So it is with the FC test. One works a lot better.
    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: Pool still green and cloudy! HELP!

    I never disputed that. That why I bought one and recommend it. The pool calculator helps you figure out how yo raise from 5ppm to x. I can look and know what orange I need to be at or around to get a clue how close I am I want a cc test so I can see if its killing algae still or not. If I do my job right I will rarely have to shock as much as I had to this time. It will be nice to have that kit but to say dont do anything until you have a kit seems counter intuitive. The pool store will get you close and the pool calculator will get you closer while you're waiting for it.

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    Re: Pool still green and cloudy! HELP!

    Quote Originally Posted by exceltoexcel
    I never disputed that. That why I bought one and recommend it. The pool calculator helps you figure out how yo raise from 5ppm to x. I can look and know what orange I need to be at or around to get a clue how close I am I want a cc test so I can see if its killing algae still or not. If I do my job right I will rarely have to shock as much as I had to this time. It will be nice to have that kit but to say dont do anything until you have a kit seems counter intuitive. The pool store will get you close and the pool calculator will get you closer while you're waiting for it.
    Respectfully... The truth is sometimes not as simple as you have indicated. Some pool store results might be worthwhile... Most are not as far as we members are able to tell.

    As an example, my local pool store told me my TA was very low and my CYA was also low before I got a good kit. So I adjusted my TA and used some Dichlor to raise FC and CYA at the same time... But my TA when measured by my good kit was way high, and CYA was higher than calculated...

    A bad kit is different from one that is good but lacks some of the tests needed. I have some non-Taylor chemistry and there is a huge difference in reliability of the pH measurement, the TA, etc. Phenol red is not all the same.

    Your kit without the FAS-DPD is not bad, it is very reliable within limits. The addition of the FAS-DPD provides the necessary accuracy to follow the care recommended here. Using a DPD or OTO test when shocking is mostly about guessing, and does not give you the ability to do an overnight chlorine loss test with the precision needed to be sure that all things consuming chlorine have been neutralized. Indeed, the precision of the CC test is also too low when measured at shock level of FC.

    Can it work? Sure. Is it much better than pool store models of care? I don't know, it feels like a lot of guessing and there is a high chance of overdoing dosing.

    To the original poster... You are doing fine. If you want to try to get ahead by adding bleach you can do so, but please understand that too much of anything can be bad also so measuring and then adjusting is the preferred model.

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    Re: Pool still green and cloudy! HELP!

    Quote Originally Posted by exceltoexcel
    Pfft. Chemist would laugh at that comment. Does your kit use a special reagent or something? Additional color ranges dont make your kit more accurate. If its the same reagent but a broader color match its only better in that you have something that matches the ranges you need. Wow. I should cancel my order.

    Is you phenol red. Superior? You hca ortho better somehow? Or are you using some different reagent?

    The proof is in the pudding. My pictures show it. I didny get lucky here I followed the pool calculator, the good advice here and my brain.

    Four times I had bad algae blooms each time because I screwed up on.maintance and my cya was horrible off the charts. All four times it took about 4 days to clear and I used, gasp.. an htc walmart pool test kit.
    exceltoexcel, you seem to be getting upset here for no good reason, sure it is possible to successfully shock a pool with a substandard test kit, however you do add a certain amount of risk in doing so. This is much like the way it is possible to drive a car with a broken speedometer and not get pulled over for speeding, you still have some rough guides to what is going on, sound of wind, engine noise, etc., but you don't have a good firm number. This is much like the comparison between the color matching OTO chlorine test and the drop counting FAS-DPD Chlorine test, sure there is room for error in both, drop sizes have room for variation, but to go back to our car analogy, speedometers can be out of calibration also. However just because you can do it and may have done it before successfully does not mean it is something you should recommend doing, particularly if you are not knowledgable in the skills of the person you are talking to.
    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
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    Re: Get test kit / bad test kit

    However just because you can do it and may have done it before successfully does not mean it is something you should recommend doing, particularly if you are not knowledgable in the skills of the person you are talking to
    Exactly. We teach to a VERY broad spectrum of people. That one of them can clear a pool without testing accurately does not mean EVERYONE can do it nor should it be suggested as an alternate method.

    The majority of newbies come here in the first place because their strips/pool store testing has failed them. It is counterproductive to tell them it's ok to use them.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Pool still green and cloudy! HELP!

    Quote Originally Posted by exceltoexcel
    Is you phenol red. Superior? You hca ortho better somehow? Or are you using some different reagent?
    The Taylor pH test (which is used in the TFTestkits as well) is different than some inexpensive brands because it contains a proprietary combination of chlorine neutralizers that are designed not to affect the pH when the chlorine gets neutralized. The same cannot be said for test kits that have you add thiosulfate solution since that tends to raise the pH when added and even more when the chlorine gets neutralized.

    I'm not going to say that Taylor makes the only great wet chemistry. Others do a very good job with their higher end kits as well, such as LaMotte, Palintest and a few others. The HTH multi-way test kits aren't that bad except they don't have a FAS-DPD test. That's one reason why TFTestkits sells a separate FAS-DPD test kit option -- for those who already have a decent test kit, be it from Taylor or some other brand.

    We mostly settled on Taylor wet chemistry due to its consistency, accuracy and ease-of-use. We settled in on TFTestkits due to the better packaging in terms of quantity of useful reagents that provides a better value as well as Dave's outstanding customer service, but we usually talk about both the K-2006 and the TF100 if people want more options. Outside of the U.S., these kits may not be available, depending on the country.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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    Re: Good test kit / bad test kit

    Here's my next to worthless opinion

    Don't buy cheap tools you only end up paying more in the long run
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    Re: Good test kit / bad test kit

    Quote Originally Posted by SkyKid
    Here's my next to worthless opinion

    Don't buy cheap tools you only end up paying more in the long run
    Sage advice.


    - Sent using Tapatalk
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
    Hayward SuperPump (model ?), Polaris 380 & PB4 Booster Pump

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