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Thread: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

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    byteme's Avatar
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    Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    Greetings!

    I've been tracking chemical use and adjustments over the past few weeks since starting BBB. I'm having to add about 60 to 80 ounces of 8.25% bleach daily and about 1 to 1 1/2 pounds of borax every two days to maintain target levels.

    I started targeting an FC of 8. Adding bleach in the evening, I found that the FC was perilously close to minimums (testing out at 4 to 4.5) by the next evening. The minimum for FC level for our pool is 4. So, for the last week, I've been targeting 9, which is resulting in an FC of 5.5 to 6 the next evening.

    I've tested again each morning and, each time, the FC was at the target level. OCLT is 0 and CC is always <0.5 (The sample goes from barely pink to clear.) So that indicates that the pool is using 3 to 3.5 ppm chlorine per day.

    I'm targeting the PH at 7.6. It's dropping about .2 to .3 every two days.

    The pools is only receiving moderate use (two or three hours in the afternoon). The pool gets direct sunlight from about 11 am until 7:30 pm.

    Here are the results from early this morning (I performed all of them including CYA):

    FC=5
    CC=0 (sample was clear)
    PH=7.4
    TA=80
    CH=30
    CYA=40

    My question is, is this normal? Would boosting the CYA to, say 50, help reduce the chlorine use? Am I just being paranoid!?

    As always, thanks for all you do for us neophytes!
    13500 gal above ground (24' round/4' deep), vinyl, 2hp/2 speed pump, ProClean cartridge filter (125 sq ft surface area), Hayward auto chlorinator (turned off!).

    "There once was a fellow named Harry, who's pool became green and contrary!
    Then he found TroubleFree, learned about BBB, now pool care's not quite as scary!"

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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    I would go ahead and boost CYA to 60 ppm. That'll make a pretty good improvement on your FC consumption, I think.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    Do you know what your TA was at the beginning? Everytime you add 1 1/2 lbs of borax your raising TA by 3.5. If you've been adding every 2 days for a few weeks, I wonder how low it was to start with. You can just keep raising PH and your TA/PH should level out to hold steady once it gets where it wants. (From my understanding)

    With that kind of loss of FC, sounds like you don't have or use a solar cover? 3 to 3.5 sounds like reasonable losses for an uncovered pool, maybe a little high for a covered unused pool.


    The pools is only receiving moderate use (two or three hours in the afternoon)
    Is that everyday? Use of the pool will consume FC faster. Are the 3 to 3.5 loss with or without being used?
    12500 gallons, 24 foot round above ground
    Hayward Sand filter, Pentair OptiFlo 1HP 2-Speed pump

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    byteme's Avatar
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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    Hi, all.

    Thanks for the responses. My brother and his crew were here from San Antonio last week, so I haven't tinkered with the pool other than daily tests and adjustments. The PH has become more stable (haven't had to adjust it but once in the last week and a half). I'm still having to add 2 to 3 quarts of 8.25% bleach every day. There is no over night loss and the CC remains 0.5 or less (sample is barely pink).

    Rather than go straight to 60 on the CYA, I'm going to go to 50 and see how much difference that makes. I can always go up if needed. I used the Pool Calculator to determine how much, by weight, of trichlor I'd need to raise the CYA from 40 to 50 (about 2 lbs). So, I grabbed the scale and weighed out 2 lbs of puck's (that I already had), put them in the auto-chlorinator and set it at roughly 1/3 of the dial on. Once they're gone, I'll check the CYA again (and leave the chlorinator empty).

    And, no, we don't have a solar cover and it gets direct sunlight from about 10:00 am to 7:30 pm this time of year. The grandkids are using it a couple hours a day. (The water temp runs about 76 - 78 which is still a wee bit chilly for me!)

    Thanks, again!
    13500 gal above ground (24' round/4' deep), vinyl, 2hp/2 speed pump, ProClean cartridge filter (125 sq ft surface area), Hayward auto chlorinator (turned off!).

    "There once was a fellow named Harry, who's pool became green and contrary!
    Then he found TroubleFree, learned about BBB, now pool care's not quite as scary!"

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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    I used the Pool Calculator to determine how much, by weight, of trichlor I'd need to raise the CYA from 40 to 50 (about 2 lbs)
    The fault with that plan is the tri-chlor from the tabs will drop pH precipitously. I suspect that may have been some of the problem you were having with pH before as it very unusual to have to raise the pH in a pool.....unless you use pucks.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    I know I'll have to check and adjust the PH when using the pucks to raise the CYA level. I haven't used pucks since converting to BBB. The only reason I'm using them now is to raise the CYA. We did a partial drain/refill to get the CYA down to an acceptable level when we opened the pool and battled the algae. Ever since the refill, it's been nothing but bleach and borax. I already have the pucks so I figured to use them instead of buying something else.

    So long as I keep up with the PH, it should be ok, right?
    13500 gal above ground (24' round/4' deep), vinyl, 2hp/2 speed pump, ProClean cartridge filter (125 sq ft surface area), Hayward auto chlorinator (turned off!).

    "There once was a fellow named Harry, who's pool became green and contrary!
    Then he found TroubleFree, learned about BBB, now pool care's not quite as scary!"

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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    The pucks will keep for another day. Why not just raise your CYA with CYA and be done with it on a one time dose. It's your call but you are going about it the hard way.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    byteme's Avatar
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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    Good morning!

    Since I'm new at this, I may be missing something, but wouldn't I face the same problems with PH using just CYA as with using pucks? Also, I've read here that it takes a week for "CYA in sock" to make a change in the CYA level. I would expect the pucks to dissolve within a week or so, too.

    Other than the pucks adding chlorine too, I don't understand what makes using them any different. Not questioning your advice (and CERTAINLY not your expertise!), but I'm still new at this and wanting to learn and understand.

    Thanks!
    13500 gal above ground (24' round/4' deep), vinyl, 2hp/2 speed pump, ProClean cartridge filter (125 sq ft surface area), Hayward auto chlorinator (turned off!).

    "There once was a fellow named Harry, who's pool became green and contrary!
    Then he found TroubleFree, learned about BBB, now pool care's not quite as scary!"

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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    The pucks, if you put them in all at once, will take perhaps a week to dissolve and drive your pH down by about .9 and will likely over chlorinate your pool in the process.

    While it seems efficient to adjust 2 parameters with one chemical, the results often don't work out as well as you expect.

    It is probably a smoother operation to put the CYA in in a single dose (it'll drop your pH by only about .3). Then chlorinate your pool with bleach so you can keep a more even daily dosage of FC.

    Check out the "effects of adding chemicals" in the poolcalculator.

    Again, you can certainly do it with the pucks but we always suggest adjusting one parameter at a time to keep your testing and dosages a bit more in your control.

    Saving the pucks for a long weekend is really a handy use for them and they keep practically forever.....sorta' nice to keep some around rather than use them all up.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    byteme's Avatar
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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    Ah...that makes sense. I knew it would effect the chlorine level, but I didn't think about it overchlorinating. When I used them in the past (pre-BBB), I was using test strips and all I knew was that the chlorine was at or above 5 ppm. I didn't really know what the actual chlorine level was, so I was probably overchlorinating and didn't know it. The water was clear and I was fat, dumb and happy.

    So, it's off to the store to get stabilizer. Is there anything specific I should look for in the ingredients that it should NOT contain?

    Thanks!
    13500 gal above ground (24' round/4' deep), vinyl, 2hp/2 speed pump, ProClean cartridge filter (125 sq ft surface area), Hayward auto chlorinator (turned off!).

    "There once was a fellow named Harry, who's pool became green and contrary!
    Then he found TroubleFree, learned about BBB, now pool care's not quite as scary!"

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    Re: Is It Normal To Have To Adjust...

    It's pretty generic....all of it's about 96-99% CYA...brand seems irrelevant.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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