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Thread: Swamp Help Please

  1. Back To Top    #1

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    Swamp Help Please

    First I would like to say hi to everyone. I'm new to the forum and a first time pool owner. I am a single father with two teenage daughters. We just moved to a house with a pool. I work full time and I'm doing the best i can to open this pool on a tight budget for my daughters to enjoy. The pool was crystal clear last summer. It had a mesh cover over it all winter so there are no heavy debris. After removing the cover last week, this is what i found.[attachment=0:2vgs0m7w]PART_1370444802083.jpeg[/attachment:2vgs0m7w] I have figured out how to run the pump and filter system. Still not sure how the swg system works.

    I made a rookie mistake by starting the shock treatment before testing the water. I have added 5 lbs of 6 in 1 pool shock w/algicide, brushed walls and floor, and running filter non stop except to backwash and rinse to no avail. I started this 24 hours ago. Today I had the water tested at a local pool store. About 16 hours after adding the shock.

    And the results are:

    FC: 0
    CC: 0 (The pool store calls this Total Available Chlorine (TAC) Is this the same as CC?)
    PH: 8.5
    TA: 60
    CYA: 20
    Calcium Hardness: 130
    Salt: 2600

    I have read a lot on this forum and I'm so confused on what to use, how much to use, and when to use it. That is why I'm turning to the experts here. I'm hoping someone can point me in the right direction to clear up this pool. Like i said I'm on a tight budget and I cant afford the top of the line water testers but i can get it tested at the pool store every day if need be. Thanks in advanced for any help you can give me.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    16x32 IG, 24k Gallon, Vinyl, Sand filter, SWG

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    If you want to do this on a tight budget, honestly the best first step is ordering one of the Recommended Test Kits, best option would be the TF-100 with the XL option. It is a tool that will allow you to take control and not rely on the pool store who also happens to be ready to sell you overpriced stuff.

    While waiting for the kit, read Pool School (button at the upper right of the page). You need to go through the shock process. Take a look at these:
    Defeating Algae
    Turning Your Green Swamp Back into a Sparkling Oasis
    Shocking Your Pool PROCESS
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
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    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
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  3. Back To Top    #3

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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Thank you. I have read the articles you have mentioned. Like i said though I'm still a bit confused. I would like to post some pictures of the equipment at this time. [attachment=2:c7pvuczf]PART_1370444913188.jpeg[/attachment:c7pvuczf][attachment=1:c7pvuczf]tn1.jpeg[/attachment:c7pvuczf][attachment=0:c7pvuczf]tn2.jpeg[/attachment:c7pvuczf]
    Attached Images Attached Images
    16x32 IG, 24k Gallon, Vinyl, Sand filter, SWG

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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    From What Ive read on this sight and from what 3 pool stores have told me. Its all different information. I would like to be able to work with the people on this forum to clear this pool up. I plane to post progress pictures and update information as we go along. Thanks again for any help.
    16x32 IG, 24k Gallon, Vinyl, Sand filter, SWG

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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    From What I understand my CYA is low. What do I use to bring that up? And how much?
    16x32 IG, 24k Gallon, Vinyl, Sand filter, SWG

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    4knights's Avatar
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Welcome to TFP!!!!!!
    How old are your daughters? Mine is 15 and her job is to brush, net, vacuum the pool. Plus anything else I can think of I do the testing and add muratic acid when needed.( keeping her away from chemicals) anyway have your kids read pool school and the links JBizzle provided, you will be surprised at how eager they are to help get the pool up and running- to them it means pool parties with their friends. It's in their best interest to help.
    I had a mesh cover on mine and it looked pretty dirty too, required multiple vacuum sessions/back washing and refills due to back washing. You really need to spend the money on the test kit so you know where you are at and where to go. My SWG is working like a charm and I only had to add a few bottle of bleach to get it right for the SWG to takeover.
    Have faith, enlist the girls help and get ready to enjoy your pool!
    Ron- Kansas. IG fiberglass, Riviera 30 Freeform 13600 gallons,
    EasyTouch 4 w/IC20 SWCG, Pentair Whisperflo 1hp, 2 speed 220 pump, Hayward ProGrid 4820 DE filter using Eco Klean instead of DE, 2 Savi Melody 12v 5 color LEDs, Raypack 266k btu millivolt heater, Arctic Armour Mesh custom safety cover (Total self Install) TF-100 test kit w/Magic stir.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Did you have a question about the equipment? You should just leave the SWG (last 2 pix) off until the shock process is complete. Then you can work on seeing if it is functional or not.

    You have a sand filter, which can be a little slower when trying to clear the water. Does the gauge on the filter work? What are the readings when the pump is on and off?

    Quote Originally Posted by j_walker
    From What I understand my CYA is low. What do I use to bring that up? And how much?
    Well, that depends if you trust the pool store testing. CYA is usually the thing they are the worst at. Have you ordered the test kit yet?

    In reality you only want the CYA between 20-30ppm while going through the shock process.

    You can use poolcalculator.com to help calcluate how much of each chemical you need to add to get a desired result.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Sic your girls on this! My 6 year old can do the testing with my verbal instructions. Let me ask you this, you've been to 3 pool stores yes? Have the test results matched up? How much have they tried to sell you? We're you going to spend it?

    All the information you need to clear your pool has been linked in above postings. It's up to you if you want to go the pool store rout or DIY. We are here and are more than willing to help! We just need accurate test rests to help you.
    18'x43' Sport Pool
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Welcome j_walker! I understand the tight budget situation. I joined in 2011--right after I got my tax refund. As soon as I joined I ordered the TF100 XL kit. It was the best investment I ever made concerning my pool. After a few hundred bucks and doing everything they told me to do, I still had a very cloudy pool. Turning your pool around the TFP way will work and you will no doubt re-coup the price of a good test kit in very short order. The pool store will charge you more for chemicals in one visit and it won't clear your pool.

    Please forgive me if I sounded pushy--it's just that I let the pool store guide me for too many years with no real positive results. After reading so much on this site I realized that everything I was dumping in was contributing to my water issues. Do the best you can & these kind experts will walk you through it.
    17,500 gal. ABG Doughboy Pool
    1/2 HP Pump/150 sq.ft. Cartridge Filter
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    I too am going to say you need a good test kit to know what is going on with your pool, you might get away with the cheaper TF-50, which is the little brother of the TF-100, the problem is that when your clearing algae like you have it is important to maintain FC at shock level without letting the FC get so high that it can damage your pool or equipment, vinyl liner pools are particularly sensitive to bleaching from high FC, in the early stages this means perhaps testing hourly, that may be for the first 3 or 4 hours or for the first day or two. If you get the smaller TF 50 you may run out of testing reagents before you get the pool clear, again this is why you see the TF100 with the XL option suggested, as even with the added amount of testing reagent in it, you may run low or out if you have a particularly hard to clear strain of algae or if you can't devote the time to attack it properly. I know when I first started here I felt spending $75 on a test kit seemed like a lot particularly after having spent hundreds of dollars on the pool in the weeks before finding this place, but looking back it was a very smart investment. You have teenage daughters, can you imagine trying to teach them to drive in a car that did not have a working set of dashboard instruments, that is what it is like maintaining a pool without a good test kit and the pool is clear, when you have an algae bloom is it more like teaching them to drive at night in a storm with 1 headlight, no speedometer, and no gas gauge, using the pool store for testing is like telling them to judge their speed by timing the mile markers, which may or may not be in the right place.
    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
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
    ~Remember TFP counts on your donations to keep this site ad free~

  11. Back To Top    #11

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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    How old are your daughters?
    17 and 15
    My SWG is working like a charm and I only had to add a few bottle of bleach to get it right for the SWG to takeover.
    That's very encouraging.
    required multiple vacuum sessions
    Do I vacuum while i can not see the bottom? If so, do I vacuum to waste or through filter?
    In reality you only want the CYA between 20-30ppm while going through the shock process.
    So If they tested correctly I'm good at 20? Also The swg system should function properly as it was last year. I have not turned it on yet but today at the pool store I was told to start using it and to go ahead and add 80lbs of salt to the pool and set the system to super chlorinate. I did not do that as of yet.
    Have the test results matched up?
    Ive only tested the water once at on store. That was today. The three stores I went to all suggested different chemicals and amounts. They all did this without a water sample (I just went in and told them I had a green pool).

    Lastly is there any way I can do it without the test kit? Please Please. I can not afford it at this time. Especially not knowing how much everything else is going to cost (unless someone can give me a pretty good/close estimate on what the cost of chemicals I'm going to acquire will be.) I can have the water tested every day at the store. And I will ask them to be as accurate as possible.

    Sorry one more thing.. We are expecting 50% chance of heavy rain at times for the next three days in my area. Anything I should consider? As it is pouring outside at the moment.

    And thanks for the feedback thus far.
    16x32 IG, 24k Gallon, Vinyl, Sand filter, SWG

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Testing daily is not enough and telling someone to be accurate will not make it so.

    You have to spend money now on the tool to allow you to take control (and then save $ on chemicals in the future) or spend more money later by blindly adding chemicals which may or may not help ... sorry.

    At this point you will need chlorine ... and a lot of it ... in order to kill everything in the swamp. Start price shopping for the cheapest source of bleach or liquid chlorine. I am currently using the 10% HTH liquid chlorine from Walmart which is $6.50 for 2 gallons only think cheaper by me is a pool store that sells 12.5% in 4 gallon re-fillable jugs, but fuel costs to get there makes it not worth it.

    FYI, it will take 300 oz (~2.5 gallons) of 10% to add 10ppm of FC to your pool. That will get you to the shock level the first time, but it will be mostly gone in a hour and require probably another 2 gallons to get back to shock level. Rinse and repeat.

    EDIT: Your kids are old enough, have them contribute funds if they want to use the pool
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Is it possible to successfully clear a pool with a cheaper test kit or pool store testing, the answer is yes, however without one of the test kits we suggest you are trying clear the water while half blind of the situation, and with potentially unreliable information at that. You will almost certainly spend more money in wasted chemicals since you will be guessing when you need to add more chlorine not KNOWING when you need to add it. Going too long between doses of chlorine and you give the algae time to grow back which takes more chlorine to kill it later, not adding enough chlorine and it can't kill off the algae faster than it can reproduce and your in a stalemate fight costing you more money on Chlorine, Don't add enough chlorine to get to shock level and it is simply wasted money as the chlorine is not able to kill the algae faster than it can reproduce, this leaves only two things, Adding so much chlorine that you get way over shock level, and shorten the life of the liner and your pool equipment, then there is the chance you could guess and dose just right, to keep your chlorine level just right without a good test kit. If you can manage the last one you might want to cash in on that kind of luck at a nearby casino, your winnings could easily pay for one of those good test kits we keep talking about.

    Ike

    p.s. with bleach running around $3-4 per gallon these days, if the test kit saves you just 20 bottles (very possible trying to clear a mess like this) it will pay for itself, but more importantly correct chlorine levels and not doing pool store carpet bombing like techniques can make the difference between that multi thousand dollar liner lasting 2-3 years vs 10-15 years.
    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
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
    ~Remember TFP counts on your donations to keep this site ad free~

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    wmorge's Avatar
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Hi there, I'm new ,learning and in the the process of cleaning up my pool too. I want to share my results so far.

    I've spent $150 for 27 gallons of Chlorine , A kit and a bottle of stablizer.
    I started blindly .not knowing my CYA was low I dumped in 12 gal..with little results..2 days ago I got my test kit in the mail added some stabilizer and Yesterday I dug in and did it right... I put in another 12 gal through out the day testing my FC every hour on the hour from 6a to midnight to keep target shock up using the pool calculator and woke up this morning to some blue. (Ok teal but not green lol ) Progress! Just in 1 day Vs the 5 days prior.

    I just want to encourage you to not do anything until you buy a test kit. I was doubtful too but learned that it's a must. I doubt I would have used so much chlorine at the start if I had known my numbers and understood the shock process..there by saving myself some money to buy the kit I'm almost there and you will get there too!
    16x32 I.G. Vinyl, Hayward Pro High-Rate Sand S220T, Vari-Flo XL Valve, Hayward Super Pump 1Hp , Great White cleaner, Hayward W530 Leaf Canister, TF100, Pool Skim.

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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Okay okay. I see there is really no way around the test kit. Y'all have made a valid points and I get it. I will get one soon.
    16x32 IG, 24k Gallon, Vinyl, Sand filter, SWG

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    ship of fools's Avatar
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Quote Originally Posted by j_walker
    Okay okay. I see there is really no way around the test kit. Y'all have made a valid points and I get it. I will get one soon.

    You will save money in the long run .... no question about it.

    My first year as a pool owner i went to the pool store and spent about $300 on stabilizer, tabs and shock. I ended up going back in late august for another $100 worth.

    Last year was my first year as a BBB'r and even including the $130 i spent on the XL kit and speedstir i was well below year 1.

    This year i bought stabilizer for $15 or $20 (i don't really remember but it wasn't more than that) and bleach and that is it. I use about $1.50 worth of bleach a day so $10 per week for a 4 month season comes to $160 or so ..... which is pretty good in my book.... plus i know how to control my water so i never get frustrated talking to the high school kid at the pool store

    On top of that you will learn so much here you can do your own repairs when needed
    21,000 gallon inground
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  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    Okay, so moving forward... I'm trying to get a good understanding on what my numbers should be for the shock process. I know I need to raise the fc and lower the ph. Is the cya ok at 20 for now? Should I lower the ph first? I have about a gallon and half of muriatic acid. Not sure the strength but i will check. Also if I add the acid, how long should it take for the ph to drop and stabilize? I will use the pool calculator to determine how much acid to use. What is the target ph level I'm aiming for to shock?
    16x32 IG, 24k Gallon, Vinyl, Sand filter, SWG

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    wmorge's Avatar
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    I can only share my experience so far. My Ph has been low to begin with.. 6.8 to 7.2 I read that Ph rises during shocking but mine hasn't budged so fortunately for me I didn't have to do anything with ph. My CYA was reading 0 so I put in 4lbs of stabilizer..it dissolved pretty quickly in a sock by squeezing it and pulling it around the pool several times. The pool calculator showed me what my shock target was (14) with
    my cya @ 35 after adding the stab. Every hour I tested only for FC nothing else and put in the recommended
    amount each time. In the beginning I was putting in 2 to 3 gallons at a time but now it has
    tapered off to cups or a quart because chlorine is holding better. Good Luck!!
    16x32 I.G. Vinyl, Hayward Pro High-Rate Sand S220T, Vari-Flo XL Valve, Hayward Super Pump 1Hp , Great White cleaner, Hayward W530 Leaf Canister, TF100, Pool Skim.

  19. Back To Top    #19
    wmorge's Avatar
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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    The proof is in the pictures. The last is today.. I don't know why its foamy?

    [attachment=2:35eilahl]401764_3796477188572_23628428_n.jpg[/attachment:35eilahl]
    [attachment=0:35eilahl]DSC08170.JPG[/attachment:35eilahl]
    [attachment=1:35eilahl]DSC08172.JPG[/attachment:35eilahl]
    Attached Images Attached Images
    16x32 I.G. Vinyl, Hayward Pro High-Rate Sand S220T, Vari-Flo XL Valve, Hayward Super Pump 1Hp , Great White cleaner, Hayward W530 Leaf Canister, TF100, Pool Skim.

  20. Back To Top    #20

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    Re: Swamp Help Please

    So i have not got the test kit yet. But I did have the water tested again today. It has rained pretty good the past couple days since the first test. Enough rain to raise the water a couple - three inches. Just wondering if that is what changed my numbers.

    Current results
    FC: 0
    CC: 0.5
    PH: 7.5
    TA:105
    CYA: 19
    Tot. Hardness: 77
    Salt: 2500

    Just wondering if these numbers are good to start the shock process? Or do I need to plan to adjust these numbers before I start shocking?
    16x32 IG, 24k Gallon, Vinyl, Sand filter, SWG

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