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Thread: I really need help adjusting my levels

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    I really need help adjusting my levels

    Hi guys. I need some help adjusting my levels. Last year things went pretty smoothly but I'm having to do more adjustments this year & could use some advice.

    I have an 18'x52" above ground pool with a SWG & sand filter system.

    My water is bright green & cloudy. Here are my most current test readings with an hth strip.

    TH - 200
    FC - 0
    pH - 6.8
    TA - 180
    CYA - Just slightly above 0
    And my swg indicates that there is sufficient salt in the pool.

    Can you give me some advice on how to go about correcting these? Thank you soooo much!

    6000 Gallons; Vinyl; AG; Columbia High Performance Sand Filter, 200 lb, 2 HP, 6,000 GPH; Krystal Clear SWG; 3 years old; Using TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    Quote Originally Posted by ksumm
    Hi guys. I need some help adjusting my levels. Last year things went pretty smoothly but I'm having to do more adjustments this year & could use some advice.

    I have an 18'x52" above ground pool with a SWG & sand filter system.

    My water is bright green & cloudy. Here are my most current test readings with an hth strip.

    TH - 200
    FC - 0
    pH - 6.8
    TA - 180
    CYA - Just slightly above 0
    And my swg indicates that there is sufficient salt in the pool.

    Can you give me some advice on how to go about correcting these? Thank you soooo much!
    You need a better way to test your water, and you'll need a whole bunch of bleach.

    What you've asked would take anyone days to type out the answer to. And it's already been done here: pool-school/
    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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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    First priority is to raise the PH to at least 7.0.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    I'm back. I got the only 6 way drop test kit I could get in my area. It doesn't, however, test the borate level. So, what should I do about that?
    My current readings are:
    FC .5
    PH 8.2
    TA 100
    CYA 35
    And according to the directions on the kit, my TH level is 30?

    6000 Gallons; Vinyl; AG; Columbia High Performance Sand Filter, 200 lb, 2 HP, 6,000 GPH; Krystal Clear SWG; 3 years old; Using TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    Quote Originally Posted by ksumm
    I'm back. I got the only 6 way drop test kit I could get in my area. It doesn't, however, test the borate level. So, what should I do about that?
    My current readings are:
    FC .5
    PH 8.2
    TA 100
    CYA 35
    And according to the directions on the kit, my TH level is 30?
    If you haven't been using borates, don't worry.
    Use http://www.poolcalculator.com/ to figure out your pool size and calculate how much acid you need to lower pH to 7.2. Give the acid half an hour or so to circulate, then raise FC level to about 15 and keep it up there until the green goes away.

    Complete directions are in turning-your-green-swamp-back-into-a-sparkling-oasis-t4147.html
    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: I really need help adjusting my levels

    OK. Thank you for your help & patience. I lowered my pH to 7.9. My CYA is reading at 50, BR 1, TA 90, but I am still reading zero Chlorine. I was told that I needed to do a "major" bleach treatment. How much bleach should I use & on what schedule should I dispense it?

    6000 Gallons; Vinyl; AG; Columbia High Performance Sand Filter, 200 lb, 2 HP, 6,000 GPH; Krystal Clear SWG; 3 years old; Using TF-100 Test Kit.

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    alanpaul's Avatar
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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320
    Use http://www.poolcalculator.com/ to figure out your pool size and calculate how much acid you need to lower pH to 7.2. Give the acid half an hour or so to circulate, then raise FC level to about 15 and keep it up there until the green goes away.

    Complete directions are in turning-your-green-swamp-back-into-a-sparkling-oasis-t4147.html
    As Richard320 posted above, just follow the directions.

    For every pool owner, this is a learning experience, too. Reading the above info will teach you Lesson 1 about how to take charge of your pool. You can do it, and you will win. You will be victorious and you will be confident forever after.

    Also, read Pool School (white button at top right of every page). Lots of information that will take a few read-throughs to understand, but it will make you an expert at pool maintenance, high efficiency and low cost.

    Welcome!
    Alan in Wellington, FL - near West Palm Beach
    15,200 gal IG, painted plaster, 1988; 200 SqFt cartridge filter, 2013; 1.5 HP 1-speed pump (uprated), 2005; heat pump, 2005;
    soon to repair (dead) SWG AquaRite T-15 cell, 2005, and replace (dead) suction-side cleaner, 2005.
    Almost everything died this winter 2012-'13, and I know we shouldn't complain... but, Arrgh!

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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    Following the shock process will be difficult, if not impossible, without the proper test kit. I assume you have the hth 6 way drop kit, correct? You can make that into a better kit by just adding the FAS-DPD chlorine test from TF test kits, link in my signature.
    John
    7 year old ~13,500 gal 24' AGP with 1.5 hp Proline pump, 150 sqft Pleatco cartridge, filled with well water with pH of about 4.5.
    Wanda the Whale pool vacuum, home made heater, Taylor K-2006
    Cloudy Pool? 1) Order test kit. 2) Follow SLAM
    New to TFPC? Read Pool School a few times, then post questions. PoolMath will help with chemical additions.

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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    Yes, that is the only test kit I could get me hands on without having to order. I will definitely look at getting a better test kit or adding the chlorine test you mentioned.

    I am feeling very optimistic though! I have gone through the turning your green swamp back into an oasis process & things are looking up. The water definitely looks great! Here are my current readings:

    FC 5
    Borate 10
    pH 7.3
    TA 100
    CYA 52

    I ran the test on the total hardness, but when I put in the indicator drops, the solution did not turn red. It was barely a dingy yellow. I wanted to see what would happen when I added the titrant drops. It took approximately 34 drops before the water even had a hint of blue. Any ideas what that tells me? Last time I ran this test, the water was red after I added the initial drops & it only took 3 drops of titrant before turning blue.

    Lastly, I have been reading quite a bit about the benefits of adding borates. Everyone says go the borax & muriatic acid route. I think I would like to. Do you guys agree that it would be a good idea? And how would you suggest that I do this?

    6000 Gallons; Vinyl; AG; Columbia High Performance Sand Filter, 200 lb, 2 HP, 6,000 GPH; Krystal Clear SWG; 3 years old; Using TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    I remembered one other question. A local pool person told me that I should add diatomaceous earth to my sand filter bc it would greatly increase its effectiveness. He said to just run it into the filter through the skimmer. I had never heard of this & wanted your opinion.

    6000 Gallons; Vinyl; AG; Columbia High Performance Sand Filter, 200 lb, 2 HP, 6,000 GPH; Krystal Clear SWG; 3 years old; Using TF-100 Test Kit.

  11. Back To Top    #11

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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    pool-school/add_de_to_a_sand_filter
    It will improve filtration, but increase how often you have to backwash. Since your pool is cloudy, you will be backwashing a lot. I wouldn't add DE until you pass the <1 ppm FC loss overnight and <.5ppm CC. You will be backwashing way too often before then.
    John
    7 year old ~13,500 gal 24' AGP with 1.5 hp Proline pump, 150 sqft Pleatco cartridge, filled with well water with pH of about 4.5.
    Wanda the Whale pool vacuum, home made heater, Taylor K-2006
    Cloudy Pool? 1) Order test kit. 2) Follow SLAM
    New to TFPC? Read Pool School a few times, then post questions. PoolMath will help with chemical additions.

  12. Back To Top    #12

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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    As to the Total Hardness test, I have always hated doing that when I had the hth 6 way kit. The test is much easier to use in the K-2006 and TF-100. Hold off on the Borates until you have the pool clear and sparkling. They are optional, and right now you should only focus on shocking.
    John
    7 year old ~13,500 gal 24' AGP with 1.5 hp Proline pump, 150 sqft Pleatco cartridge, filled with well water with pH of about 4.5.
    Wanda the Whale pool vacuum, home made heater, Taylor K-2006
    Cloudy Pool? 1) Order test kit. 2) Follow SLAM
    New to TFPC? Read Pool School a few times, then post questions. PoolMath will help with chemical additions.

  13. Back To Top    #13

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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    Ok, so where to I go from here "shocking" wise. I did the bleach regiment yesterday and today. Do I need to still be keeping it at shock level? Visibly, there is a remarkable improvement. The water is barely cloudy, to the naked eye.

    6000 Gallons; Vinyl; AG; Columbia High Performance Sand Filter, 200 lb, 2 HP, 6,000 GPH; Krystal Clear SWG; 3 years old; Using TF-100 Test Kit.

  14. Back To Top    #14

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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    There are 3 criteria for ending the shock process, but you can only be sure you are meeting one of them. The 3 criteria are Free Chlorine loss of less than 1 ppm overnight (FC<1ppm overnight), Less than .5 ppm combined chlorine (<.5ppm CC) and the pool is clear. With your current test kit, you can only be sure that the pool is clear. This is why you should invest (I say invest, because it will save money in the long run) in the better test kit. When you are done with the shocking process, you let FC drop to normal levels (8 with a CYA of 50, and never below 4) and make sure all other levels are balanced.
    John
    7 year old ~13,500 gal 24' AGP with 1.5 hp Proline pump, 150 sqft Pleatco cartridge, filled with well water with pH of about 4.5.
    Wanda the Whale pool vacuum, home made heater, Taylor K-2006
    Cloudy Pool? 1) Order test kit. 2) Follow SLAM
    New to TFPC? Read Pool School a few times, then post questions. PoolMath will help with chemical additions.

  15. Back To Top    #15

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    Re: I really need help adjusting my levels

    Ok, so I keep it at shock level continuously until the pool is clear unless I get a better test kit.

    6000 Gallons; Vinyl; AG; Columbia High Performance Sand Filter, 200 lb, 2 HP, 6,000 GPH; Krystal Clear SWG; 3 years old; Using TF-100 Test Kit.

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