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Thread: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

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    Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Hello, I'm new to the forum and glad that I found it. It looks like there's a lot of knowledge in this community, and I've already learned a lot just by going to Pool School and reading a LOT of posts the last few days.

    But I need some help. Here's the background:

    I let the pool go last fall, after it had turned green from a vacation last October and ignored it through the winter. (I don't usually close it, the pump runs 24/7 and normally I just keep the inline chlorinator full of tabs through the winter months and rake the worst of the leaves off of the bottom a couple of times. I didn't do that last winter, though, and let it run out of chlorine a few times over the winter.)

    Needless to say, I had a swamp this spring. To their credit, the local Leslie's said my CYA was high and suggested I do a few partial drain & refills to bring it down. I did several and got it to about 80 or 90 (their testing). They then said that was low enough and had me add a quart of their algaecide and shock it several times. while this was going on turned the Chlorinator way up and kept it full of tabs. The algae never really fully went away and I kept shocking and pouring algaecide into it, as well as Pool Perfect +Phos Free that they said I needed to get rid of the "algae food". The algae would go away for a day or two, but I started getting green patches if the chlorine went anywhere near what I thought was normal (1-5 ppm) They then said that my CYA was "creeping up" and suggested I stop using the tabs and just use the 73% Cal-Hypo "shock" they sell to maintain my chlorine in the "normal" range. That worked as long as I keep the chlorine level high, but it was taking a couple of pounds a day to do that, and the other day the pool turned cloudy. Very cloudy - I can't see the drain and can barely make out the pattern in the shallow end.

    I took another sample to Leslies and they said everything looked good, I just needed to add some clarifier to clear it up, so I did a couple of days ago, but don't see any difference.

    Monday night my OTO test kit showed the chlorine at about 3, so I put 8 lbs of CalHypo in it. Reading this forum, I realized that the pool store testing wasn't reliable and I needed to be able to measure high chlorine levels, so I ordered a Taylor K-2006 test kit, which arrived today.

    With my new test kit, I got the following results this evening:

    FC - 8.6
    CC - 0 (? sample didn't stayed clear when I added the 2nd liquid)
    pH - 7.6
    TA - 180
    CH - 320
    CYA - 150 (1st test >100, so I diluted sample 50:50 with tap water, then doubled result of ~75)
    Borates - (not using)

    Just for Kicks, I took a sample to the pool store right after doing my tests. They got (with thier comments):

    FC - 5 ("the highest my test goes, may be higher")
    Available Chlorine - 5
    pH - 7.6
    TA - 130 ("a little high - needs 4 lbs dry acid, maybe as much as 10 lbs")
    CH - 310 ("no problem, within range")
    CYA - 105 ("slightly over 100, not enough to worry about")
    TDS - 1100
    Phosphates - 300 ("Need to add 32oz of Phos-Free")

    Sorry this is getting so long, but I wanted everyone to know the background of the problem and what I'd done so far.

    I have a few questions -

    1. Judging by what I've read here, the best thing to do would be to replace about 2/3rds of my water to get my CYA down to about 50. Being a vinyl liner pool, that's going to take several partial drains & refills. Would a CYA level of 80 (50% replacement) be reasonable to work with? or somewhere in between?

    2. Does dumping these huge amounts of CalHypo (73%) raise my CH, and if so, how high can I let it go?

    3. I know it's not ideal, but is there a way to keep the algae out with the CYA at 150? It seems like that would take an extremely high FC level. Would it bleach the liner? Could we swim in it? Can I use a lower FC level and an algaecide (PolyQuat 60) to keep it away after killing it by shocking? Can I even get high enough in a vinyl pool to kill algae at a CYA level of 150?

    4. Why is the water so cloudy, and how can I clear it up?

    5. I can see that the BBB method is the way to go, but can I use Cal-Hypo instead of bleach? I think it would be cheaper and easier to handle than dozens of bottles.

    Sorry for the long post and so many questions, but I'm really getting frustrated. We've dumped hundreds and hundreds of dollars in this pool since spring, and haven't even been able to use it yet.

    Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

    Dave
    32K gallon, 20x40 vinyl IG. Liner replaced 5/2010. Hayward SuperPump 1HP single speed running 24/7,Hayward CL-200 in-line chlorinator. Hayward S244T sand filter (new sand 5/2013). Dolphin Diagnostic cleaner. Taylor K2006 Test Kit.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    1. 50ppm would be better, 80ppm would be possible
    2. Yes it raises you CH and you should stop using it now and switch to liquid chlorine
    3. It would not bleach the liner and you could swim in it because the CYA is so high, but you would have to maintain a FC > 11ppm at all time assuming the water was clean. If the water required the shock process, then you are talking about FC levels of 35-50ppm required. BTW, when the FC > 10ppm, the pH test is not valid ... another reason to not consider this course of action.
    4. Could be due to all the cal-hypo. Could be something growing in the water.
    5. No. First, it is likely not cheaper if you look at the $/ppm of FC. Second, your CH will get too high which could result in calcium scaling in 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
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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Quote Originally Posted by DaveNC
    ...

    I have a few questions -

    1. Judging by what I've read here, the best thing to do would be to replace about 2/3rds of my water to get my CYA down to about 50. Being a vinyl liner pool, that's going to take several partial drains & refills. Would a CYA level of 80 (50% replacement) be reasonable to work with? or somewhere in between? 80 CYA would put shock level up to 31. That's bleach by the barrel, not the jug. pool-school/chlorine_cya_chart_shock

    2. Does dumping these huge amounts of CalHypo (73%) raise my CH, and if so, how high can I let it go?Yes, it does. Your vinyl pool doesn't even need CH, but 300 is about as high as you want it, given a choice. pool-school/recommended_levels

    3. I know it's not ideal, but is there a way to keep the algae out with the CYA at 150? It seems like that would take an extremely high FC level. Would it bleach the liner? Could we swim in it? Can I use a lower FC level and an algaecide (PolyQuat 60) to keep it away after killing it by shocking? Can I even get high enough in a vinyl pool to kill algae at a CYA level of 150? Maintaining a minimum FC of 18 will keep algae away, once it's gone. But it gets hard to test and the pH test is highly suspect. It won't bleach out suits, and it's safe to swim in.

    4. Why is the water so cloudy, and how can I clear it up?Algae. And Calcium. Bleach and time are the main elements. Lowering pH will help some with the calcium clouding

    5. I can see that the BBB method is the way to go, but can I use Cal-Hypo instead of bleach? I think it would be cheaper and easier to handle than dozens of bottles.You can use any source you want. However, you'll need to watch out for CH buildup, and more draining, and scale, which you can't attack with a steel pool brush. You could use some for the shock process, after you've drained a replaced a bunch of CH and CYa laden water, but you'd have to stop when you got to about 250 CH. Why bother?

    Sorry for the long post and so many questions, but I'm really getting frustrated. We've dumped hundreds and hundreds of dollars in this pool since spring, and haven't even been able to use it yet.

    Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

    Dave
    Break out the siphon hose or the pump and get started draining. With diligence, you could have a clear sparkling pool that is the envy of all who see it by Fourth of July.
    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: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Because you need to replace about 2/3 of your water, your pool would be a good candidate for the drain/refill method described in the last post of this thread: cyanuric-acid-blues-draining-pool-t43843.html
    16x32 Oval In-ground Vinyl, ~17,000 gallons, Hayward 1hp Superpump, Hayward S245T Sand Filter

    Worn out sand? sand-filter-expert-help-t30049.html
    Drain the easy way: cyanuric-acid-blues-draining-pool-t43843.html
    http://tftestkits.net/splash-page.html , pool-school/chlorine_cya_chart_shock , pool-school/shocking_your_pool

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

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

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Thanks, everyone, for the welcome and the advice. It looks like the drain & refill is really the only practical route. I was afraid of that. There goes the water bill budget

    The tarp drain/refill looks interesting, but I was able to drain 2' or so at a time earlier in the year without any problems. If my math is right and I can get the water down 2.25 feet at a time, I should be able to get the CYA down to just under 50 in two sessions without buying a huge tarp or taping two pieces of visqueen together.

    I guess I'll start the process tomorrow.

    Once I'm done I'll post new test results so I can get your advice before I dump anything in the pool.

    Thanks again, everyone.

    Dave
    32K gallon, 20x40 vinyl IG. Liner replaced 5/2010. Hayward SuperPump 1HP single speed running 24/7,Hayward CL-200 in-line chlorinator. Hayward S244T sand filter (new sand 5/2013). Dolphin Diagnostic cleaner. Taylor K2006 Test Kit.

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    I drained 2.5' out of my pool last night and am refilling. The way I figure, that's 15000 gal out of 32000, or about 47%, so it should bring my CYA from 150 into the 80ish range. If I do that again tonight, I should finish up tomorrow evening with CYA in the low 40's range.

    I tested my tap water, which I'm using for filling:

    FC - < .5 (sample turned clear with first drop)
    CC - 0
    pH - >8 (this surprised me, so I retested and got the same result. The sample is a lot brighter red than any of the colors on the tester)
    TA - 30
    CH - 30
    CYA - 0 (could still see the dot after filling to the top of the tube)

    So I'm guessing that I need to pick up some muratic acid in addition to the bleach.

    Dave
    32K gallon, 20x40 vinyl IG. Liner replaced 5/2010. Hayward SuperPump 1HP single speed running 24/7,Hayward CL-200 in-line chlorinator. Hayward S244T sand filter (new sand 5/2013). Dolphin Diagnostic cleaner. Taylor K2006 Test Kit.

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Sounds like you need the muriatic. Higher than 8.0 should give you a purplish tint....not red.

    Nice work on the drain/refill. Many folks simply resist doing that...you'll be glad you did.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    I'd say it was more 'purplish' than red.

    When I get the drain & refill done, what order do I need to adjust everything? I'm guessing I'll need to raise chlorine & lower pH. Do the pH first, then add the bleach? Do I need to do the shock process?

    Of course I'll do another round of tests before adding anything.

    Thanks.
    32K gallon, 20x40 vinyl IG. Liner replaced 5/2010. Hayward SuperPump 1HP single speed running 24/7,Hayward CL-200 in-line chlorinator. Hayward S244T sand filter (new sand 5/2013). Dolphin Diagnostic cleaner. Taylor K2006 Test Kit.

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    pH first, aim for 7.2, then the shock process.
    16x32 Oval In-ground Vinyl, ~17,000 gallons, Hayward 1hp Superpump, Hayward S245T Sand Filter

    Worn out sand? sand-filter-expert-help-t30049.html
    Drain the easy way: cyanuric-acid-blues-draining-pool-t43843.html
    http://tftestkits.net/splash-page.html , pool-school/chlorine_cya_chart_shock , pool-school/shocking_your_pool

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    If your TA is really 30, make sure you have that number plugged into the now column of PoolCalc. With a TA of 30 it will take less acid to lower the PH. It's something that will have to be addressed sooner or later. I'd work on both and try to get at least to 60 or 70 TA with baking soda. You can add bleach while doing this but keep it around 10 ppm till you get the PH and TA sorted out. Shouldn't take more than an hour or so. Once you have your PH down to 7.2 and a solid idea what the CYA is, then you can start hammering away at shock level.

    P.S.
    Don't assume the CYA is at or near zero. Count it as at least 20ppm.
    Bill
    18'X4' 7600 Gal AG
    3/4 HP Pentair Pump
    Hayward S166T 100 lb sand filter

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Thanks, macgulley, for confirming that.

    yeggim, Thanks for clarifying the procedure. I may have caused some confusion by posting that last set of test results. That was for the tap water (city/county municipal supply) that I'm using to refill with for the partial drain & refill. I just wanted to see what the water I was using to refill looked like. I'll have to see what the end result of the mix is after the second partial drain & refill is done. I'm just guessing the pH will be high because my fill water has a pH over 8. The CYA, CH, and TA were all pretty high before I started this, so they should be back somewhere closer to normal when I'm done. Maybe 45-50ish on the CYA, around 100 on the CH, and 60 or so on the TA (Which is still a little low, no?) But I'll do a test and post the results here tomorrow evening after the process is finished.

    EDIT: Another question, (I'm full of them ) - Since I have 2/3 of my water replaced, should I mess with trying to add borax or just concentrate on getting the water balanced and shocking. Would there be any advantage to doing the borax now vs later?

    Thanks,

    Dave
    32K gallon, 20x40 vinyl IG. Liner replaced 5/2010. Hayward SuperPump 1HP single speed running 24/7,Hayward CL-200 in-line chlorinator. Hayward S244T sand filter (new sand 5/2013). Dolphin Diagnostic cleaner. Taylor K2006 Test Kit.

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    My apologies. I see where you did specify tap water test. Adjust your PH, test CYA and you're good to go shocking procedure. As far as Borates, I'd wait. Be aware that it's recommended that your TA be in the 70 to 80 range before adding Borates. Once you get your water to a dazzling crystal clear and get the system down, you'll soon find that the amount of time needed to keep it that way is minimal. Boredom might set in. That's the time to fiddle around with Borates etc.
    Bill
    18'X4' 7600 Gal AG
    3/4 HP Pentair Pump
    Hayward S166T 100 lb sand filter

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Sounds good to wait on the borates. One step at a time... This is a new way of life for me.

    I noticed this morning, when I went to check the progress of the refill before I left for work, that there appeared to be a lot of whitish powder laying on the bottom of the shallow end, and what looked like the same thing caked on the bottom of the deep end. (It was dark when I started the refill last night, and I didn't notice it then.) This evening after work, when the first refill was topped off, I decided to start off the second draining by vacuuming it to waste. It was an off-white/ivory colored substance that covered the sides of the pool and the shallow end, but on the bottom of the deep end and the sloped middle section, it was THICK! almost like a clay or thick off-white mud. I ended up vacuuming the sides once and the bottom of the deeper sections twice, which took about three hours and now the water is about 1.5' below normal level, so I'm draining it another foot and will start the second fill tonight.

    I should have something to report by dinner time tomorrow.

    Thanks again to everybody for all the advice...

    Dave
    32K gallon, 20x40 vinyl IG. Liner replaced 5/2010. Hayward SuperPump 1HP single speed running 24/7,Hayward CL-200 in-line chlorinator. Hayward S244T sand filter (new sand 5/2013). Dolphin Diagnostic cleaner. Taylor K2006 Test Kit.

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored" (New Test Results)

    Ok, the two partial drain & fills are done, and here are the new test results. I looks like I overshot a little.

    FC .5
    CC .5
    pH 8.0
    TA 80
    CH 140
    CYA <30 (dot still somewhat visible at 30, but almost gone at top of tube. I used 20 in the pool calculator)

    Water is just slightly cloudy when looking into the deep end.

    I just added 1/2 gal of 20 baume muratic acid. Calulator calls for 74oz, but I didn't want to overshoot.

    Calculator says I need 4 gallons of 8.25 bleach to get chlorine up to shock level of 11. Can I add that now, or do I need to wait for the muratic acid to get mixed in good?

    And I can swim in this at shock level, right?

    Thanks again,

    Dave
    32K gallon, 20x40 vinyl IG. Liner replaced 5/2010. Hayward SuperPump 1HP single speed running 24/7,Hayward CL-200 in-line chlorinator. Hayward S244T sand filter (new sand 5/2013). Dolphin Diagnostic cleaner. Taylor K2006 Test Kit.

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Calculator says I need 4 gallons of 8.25 bleach to get chlorine up to shock level of 11. Can I add that now, or do I need to wait for the muratic acid to get mixed in good?

    And I can swim in this at shock level, right?
    Give the acid about 30-60 minutes and then add. You can certainly swim safely but it might make your FC come off shock value quite a bit quicker. It's your call...I probably would give the Shock process some time to work in the pool without swimming, but it is not harmful to you if you do so.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    OK, thanks for the quick reply. I'll check the pH in about an hour and see how close to 7.2 I am, then go from there.

    We'll probably give it until tomorrow afternoon before swimming. The wife and I are just getting impatient since we haven't been able to use the pool at all this year due to green water, cloudy water, water full of all kinds of pool store chemicals and just generally messed up water. I'm sure glad I found the TFP forum.

    By the way, Dave (duraleigh). I finally see that you're the owner of TFTestkits. Thanks for shipping my test kit to me so quickly. Being in the triad, I think I got it the next day. I'm having a little buyer's remorse though. I should have got your TF-100 instead of the K2006.

    Dave
    32K gallon, 20x40 vinyl IG. Liner replaced 5/2010. Hayward SuperPump 1HP single speed running 24/7,Hayward CL-200 in-line chlorinator. Hayward S244T sand filter (new sand 5/2013). Dolphin Diagnostic cleaner. Taylor K2006 Test Kit.

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Yeah, the TF-100 ends up being quite a bit better value in the long run, but the K-2006 is a fine kit for what we teach and will serve you well.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    Hang in there Dave... before you know it, you will become bored with maintaining your sparkly pool and start looking for things to do with it. Yes, it does become that easy!
    27' round AG
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    Re: Need help after being "Pool-Stored"

    dattia, it's looking really good right now. It's pretty much cleared up. My wife came home and said she never thought she'd see it that clear again after the green swamp we started with this year and all the back & forth paying big bucks to the pool store to do things that didn't help. (And now I see that they made them worse. Once I asked the pool store guy if all this Cal-Hypo "shock" he had me dumping in (Nearly 100 lbs in the last 6 weeks or so) would raise my calcium hardness too high, and he actually said "No, the calcium turns to chlorine. It won't affect your calcium hardness level.") It also shows how little I knew about pool chemistry until I found TFP.

    It's been a lot of work, but mostly because of the bad advice from the pool store. I hope it does get easier once everything is back in sync.

    Dave
    32K gallon, 20x40 vinyl IG. Liner replaced 5/2010. Hayward SuperPump 1HP single speed running 24/7,Hayward CL-200 in-line chlorinator. Hayward S244T sand filter (new sand 5/2013). Dolphin Diagnostic cleaner. Taylor K2006 Test Kit.

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