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Thread: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

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    Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    I am new to taking care of my pool. My husband has always done it, but has been away on business. Before he left 2 weeks ago, the pool had started turning green. I was determined not to let the algae take over and I have been to the pool store MANY times to check my chemical levels and seek advice. It had been going pretty well, but I never have gotten it back to looking nice and clear. I just discovered your site. Over the past 2 weeks, my pH level kept going too high, and I have had to to add muriatic acid several times, I had to add a bunch of baking soda last week, and one of the days he had me add something for the calcium. For the past week, my levels have all been good, but on the 4th, the pool started looking a little green. I checked the levels with my little test strips - all looked well. I did some brushing of the sides, backflushed the filter, added 2 chlorine tablets to the skimmer basket for good measure, and left town. We have a chlorinater tower and it is set as high as it goes. When I came back yesterday, the pool was green. Today, I took water to the pool store, and here were the levels as of 3:00 pm:

    Free chlorine 2.03
    Total chlorine 2.23
    combined chlorine .2
    pH level 8.1 (!)
    alkalinity 110
    calcium hardness 280
    cyanuric acid 40
    saturation index 1 scaling (I don't know what that means, and it says that every time)

    He also checked the phosphate level today, which he doesn't normally do. It was high (but he didn't write down the level) and recommended adding 5 oz of phosphate remover, which I did not buy.

    He told me to add 46 oz of muriatic acid. Did so. I *think* it brought the pH down, but I'm relying on the little color chart on the Aqua Check bottle.

    He also told me to shock the pool with Super Shockwave pool shock (Calcium Hypochlorite - 73% available chlorine). He told me to put in 2 1/2 bags with pool on recirculate and check it in 15 min and add more if the pool water still looked the same. I did that - no change. Added the other 1/2 bag - waited 15 min. Nothing. Added my other (last) bag. Nothing. So, I put the filter back on and left it because by then it was dark out. So, I don't have any way to get accurate readings until Monday (small town - things are closed on Sunday, and I don't have a test kit aside from my little strips). My little test strips show the chlorine to be "high" but I know that's not helpful. So, I have read through the Pool School information (helpful) and many former posts about algae, but I am still unsure how to proceed tomorrow. Oh, and he told me to put in Drop Out after the Algae is dead and vacuum afterward, but from the prior posts of other members, it looks like that is not a typical step. (I hate vacuuming and will be happy if I don't have to do it, but I am willing to do it if that's what I need to do.)

    I should also add something about the pH level. We think it is bouncing back up continually because of the way the water is returning to the pool currently. We have a leak in the pipe that returns the water, so it is currently bypassed. We have a big hose that is returning the water to the pool and the water shoots above and into the pool which is adding oxygen to the pool. It's what we need to do for now. Also, we seem to have this problem every summer - great for a while - then it starts turning green and we fight it for the rest of the summer.

    I would appreciate any advice regarding what my next step should be tomorrow given what I did today. I have read about the importance of continuing to check the FC levels, but all I have to go on right now are my little test strips, and I don't want to wait until Monday and lose any progress I may have made.

    Thank you in advance.
    Southeast KS, Unpainted plaster gunite, 22,000 gal, sand filter, Polaris pool sweep

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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    I know you don't want to hear this, but test strips and pool store testing are basically worthless. In order to clear up the pool, you will need to follow the Shock Process using one of the recommended test kits. Both are linked to 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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    Richard320's Avatar
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    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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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Poor thing! How frustrating! Well there IS a way YOU can be in control of the pool.

    -first step-order your own test kit. See my siggy for a link to the good test kits.
    -read and read and read pool school. It can be a little overwhelming but you will get the hang of it once you read it a few times.

    Once you get your test kit you will never have to depend on the pool store again.

    Let me tell you about pool stores-I took the SAME water to three different pool stores here in town. Two were same stores just on different sides of town. The other was also a national chain. SOOOOOO you would think they would know what to do right??? WRONG!

    I got 3 different sets of results! The prices to "fix" my pool ranged from just under $100 to over $200! Even when I told them the pool looked good "Oh you never know what is going on in the water. This sheet of paper show all kinds of things wrong."

    I had tested the water with MY test kit before I left the house and it was spot on! Everything right where I wanted it.

    SOOOO do NOT rely on the pool store. They need your water to be bad so you have to buy stuff from them. How else can them make payroll?

    Good luck and check in soon to let us know how it it is going!

    Ki
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Thank you for your responses.

    I understand about buying the test kit and about the pool stores wanting to make money. But, it doesn't make sense to me to just throw up my hands and do nothing until I get a test kit, so I want to work with the situation I have today, and then I can order the test kit and use the methods on this site from then on.

    For today, here's what I would like to know:

    Are you all, in fact, telling me to just do nothing until I can get a test kit?

    I turned off my chlorinator when added the supershock to the pool. Should I turn it back on now? It has been about 13 hrs since I added that shock.

    Would it be worth it to try putting in the Drop out and vacuum out what I can?

    I had read somewhere that the filter will never remove all the algae and that you can't do this without vacuuming, but when I have read the steps here for shocking and removing algae, it looks like if you keep the chlorine up at shock level and keep filtering, it will clear up in about a week with a sand filter. Have I read that correctly?
    Southeast KS, Unpainted plaster gunite, 22,000 gal, sand filter, Polaris pool sweep

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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Don't do nothing....do this:

    1. Order the TF 100

    2. Stop adding trichlor, dichlor, and any other powedered "shock".

    3. Go to store (Costco or some other warehouse club store, as they seem to have best prices) and buy copious amounts of bleach.

    4. Add 5 gallons of 8.25% bleach.


    The shock process is going to take copious amounts of bleach, and requires that you monitor the FC level multiple times a day, which is why you need a good test kit like TF 100.



    3. Add
    8,000 gallon, in ground, fiberglass pool with a cartridge filter.

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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Thank you. So, my clorinator - should I still have it off or turn it back on. It has those 3 inch chlorine tablets in it.
    Southeast KS, Unpainted plaster gunite, 22,000 gal, sand filter, Polaris pool sweep

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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Don't use it. It is adding CYA, which increases the level of chlorine needed to shock. The pool store said your CYA is 40, which is fine. However, that is the test they most often get wrong. It could actually be higher, which is why you need your own test kit.
    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: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    But, it doesn't make sense to me to just throw up my hands and do nothing until I get a test kit, so I want to work with the situation I have today
    VERY, very common response and predicament for both us and you.

    Let's say you want us to give you driving directions to California. (a clear pool)

    The first thing you have to tell us is where you are.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Yes -I get that. And if we at least know that I am in the midwest, I could find out that I should start driving West or at least sit and idle instead of driving East. So, I want to avoid driving to NY instead of California. So, it sounds like I can at least go by some liquid bleach. Perhaps Home Depot (only big store we have here besides Wal-Mart) would have something that would at least measure the FC?
    Southeast KS, Unpainted plaster gunite, 22,000 gal, sand filter, Polaris pool sweep

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Walmart has little test kits as well. Do NOT get the strips. Get the drop kits.

    Buy bleach, lots of bleach. Check the prices. Look at the %. Some are as low as 4% and some as high as 12%. That way you can make sure you are getting the best value for your money.

    Good luck!

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Quote Originally Posted by KristenNScott
    Yes -I get that. And if we at least know that I am in the midwest, I could find out that I should start driving West or at least sit and idle instead of driving East. So, I want to avoid driving to NY instead of California. So, it sounds like I can at least go by some liquid bleach. Perhaps Home Depot (only big store we have here besides Wal-Mart) would have something that would at least measure the FC?
    Probably. This time of year, most of the chain hardware stores load up on pool stuff.
    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: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Grocery stores sell their own brand of bleach as well. At least by me i found Market Basket brand 8.25% bleach to be my best value second best value is Leslies 12% chlorine
    Nathan
    15x30 gunite 18k gallons Hayward star clear plus 120sqft cart

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    Re: Green pool - making sure I'm doing the right thing..l.

    Thank you! I'm anxious to get started!
    Southeast KS, Unpainted plaster gunite, 22,000 gal, sand filter, Polaris pool sweep

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