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Thread: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

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    Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Hi, I have a 30,000 gal pool. I have had an IC 40 for 1 year with no issues until about a week ago.

    My problem is; faint chlorine levels and no free chlorine.

    The water is crystal clear, PH looks good, phosphates are low.

    The IC 40 is set on 100% and has been for 5 days - no change.

    Any suggestions?

    Thank You
    30K gallons, 18x36, Intellichlor IC40 SWG, Sand filter, Intelliflo 1.5 HP, TF 100

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Welcome to tfp, mark46143

    For us to help you we need accurate test results. See this pool school article: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...efore_you_post
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

  3. Back To Top    #3

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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    30,000 Gal
    IG
    Vinyl
    Sand (new sand summer 2013)
    1.5 horsepower intelliflo/variable - run continuously run on level 3 all the time
    Built 2005, new liner 2012
    In ground floor cleaners


    Salt level: 3600 (I have IC 40 pentair 1 year old with good life level left)
    Total Hardness - 308
    Total Chlorine - .5 ppm (salt cell on 100% for 3 days)
    Free Chlorine .4 ppm
    PH 7.5
    Alkalinity 92
    CYA 250

    Thanks
    30K gallons, 18x36, Intellichlor IC40 SWG, Sand filter, Intelliflo 1.5 HP, TF 100

  4. Back To Top    #4

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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    How did you get a CYA of 250? Most tests only go up to 100. By far the best thing you can do is order one of the recommended test kits, linked to in my signature. If those tests are correct, you probably have something organic growing in your pool. That will require the SLAM process, linked to in my signature. Note that it is impossible with a CYA >100, so if your CYA really is 250, that will require a significant water change. I'm not sure how your CYA got so high. Have you added any forms of solid chlorine?
    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.
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    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.

  5. Back To Top    #5
    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    I agree with JohnN...if your cya is really that high (and I am not sure if I believe it) then you likely have algae that the swg is just keeping up with but not able to kill. How often are you having to backwash?
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Thanks!

    The print out stated what I wrote however, there's been a turn in events.

    The pool as formerly stated is perfect in terms of clarity, etc.

    Twist tonight; for the first time I have black around my lights in the pool. Its black on the lights pretty good. You cant just take a brush and get it off. Once on fingers it doesnt rinse off easily. There are no other stains anywhere.

    Do you think this could be the result of no FC? If so what do you suggest for treatment?
    30K gallons, 18x36, Intellichlor IC40 SWG, Sand filter, Intelliflo 1.5 HP, TF 100

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    It could be...first thing to do is to get accurate test results. We don't trust pool store results on here since they can be so inconsistent and not available when you need them. See this link: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...kit_comparison Many of us have the tf-100 since it is the best value.

    Next (hopefully with an accurate kit) I would recommend doing an Overnight Chlorine Loss Test (OCLT). This will tell you if you have organics in the pool. See: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...rnight_fc_test

    Even if it ends up not being algae, you still need to know your cya level so that you will know what FC level you need to maintian (or if cya is high as is suggested by the ps results a drain/refill first).
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Can you get some of the black stuff off with a fingernail and smear it on a white card? If it appears green, it is algae.

    Other than the SWG, what chlorine chemicals have been added to the pool? (powder, granular, etc.)

    Any algaecides?

    You need to stock up on plain unscented bleach and/or liquid chlorine for the SLAM process. ALso, running the SWG at 100% will shorten the life of the cell.

    As mentioned, the best thing you can do is get one of the recommended test kits. TFP has fast shipping and fantastic product and service. Link in my sig.
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

    ~ One should not use a sledge hammer to swat a mosquito. ~

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  9. Back To Top    #9

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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    OK, Im back and still have issues.

    OK - pool is clear, crystal clear.

    In the last post, I took the lights out - a bunch of junk was behind it. I used Algaecide 2000. The next day I had all kinds of stuff on the bottom of the pool. I scrubbed the sides, steps, ladder, etc. One light got most of its shiny sheen back. The other light - not so much. the SWG was producing FC and it went well for a bit. Now, I have no signs on black on the in floor cleaners (good). FC went was zero last Thursday and on Sunday it was non existent. I took the pool sample to the pool store and it was perfect (or according to my print out).

    Here's what I have:

    TDS 5000
    CYA 134
    Tot Chlorine: 1..9
    FC 1.9
    PH 7.6
    Total Alkalinity 125
    Adj Total Alkalinity 85
    Total Hardness 291
    Salt 3600

    I havent ordered the test kit here yet. I added 4 gallons of liquid shock tonight. My question is; do you think the algae is back and not existent? I took the pentair gear out to let it run and get the circulation going in the pool. The floor cleaners are up and working.

    I have to have something in the pool organic although the pool is perfect in terms of clarity. I had the pool store test for phosphates and they were normal. Im open to suggestions. I have not had 1 issue in hte past with this before. I did take the pool chlorinator off to clean it and activated it in a cooler - generated chlorine like crazy in about 30 seconds. I have an intellichlor IC 40.

    Do you think I should take lights out again? Is there a better stronger pool algae killer inhibitor. I did drain 18 inches of water off and refilled.

    Im not sure where to go from here. Pools great other than no FC and a very low faint chlorine.

    Thanks
    30K gallons, 18x36, Intellichlor IC40 SWG, Sand filter, Intelliflo 1.5 HP, TF 100

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    Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Sounds like it could be Ammonia. Sometimes the CYA over the winter turns into Ammonia. Get an Ammonia test kit from a pet store. I had this problem a few times over the years. It takes 10 ppm of chlorine to knock out 1 ppm of Ammonia. You just have to keep adding bleach.
    33,000 Vinyl Liner IG Pool, Hayward Sand Filter,Hayward Superflo Pump,Auto Pilot Dig 220 w/RC-52 cell, Polaris 9300xi cleaner. 4 wheel Pressure PoolCleaner.

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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Thanks I will try anything at this point.
    30K gallons, 18x36, Intellichlor IC40 SWG, Sand filter, Intelliflo 1.5 HP, TF 100

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Does not look like you ever got one of the recommended test kits or followed the SLAM process correctly.

    And the CYA is too high, and the algaecide was not needed.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    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: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    It's important, so I'll reiterate:

    You have to get a good test kit.
    You have to follow the SLAM process correctly.
    You have to spend some time in pool school.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
    The most important article on this site - The ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Quote Originally Posted by Smykowski
    It's important, so I'll reiterate:

    You have to get a good test kit.
    You have to follow the SLAM process correctly.
    You have to spend some time in pool school.
    X3 , but only if you want to get off the merry-go-round with pool troubles.

    btw, regardless of the organic issue in the pool, the SLAM process is the cure.

    We can guide you, but you have to do your part.
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

    ~ One should not use a sledge hammer to swat a mosquito. ~

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

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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    What is "faint chlorine" ?
    "The early bird might get the worm, but its the second mouse that gets the cheese." ~ W. Rian Adams
    .
    Relative's IG Vinyl | 16x32 | ~18,600 gals | Hayward 3/4hp Pump | Hayward S244T Filter | Pentair Model 300 Chlorinator (not used) | Polaris 180

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Quote Originally Posted by mark46143
    Thanks I will try anything at this point.
    Will you? You've been given excellent advice by some of our very best members, but it seems to go right past you.

    Why don't you give that a shot and see what sort of results you get?
    TFP Moderator
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    ABC's Of Pool Chemistry, Test Kits, SLAM Your Pool
    28K Gal IG FreeForm, CLI Quartz, Pentair 36"SF & VS Pump, Dolphin M5, Rheem

  17. Back To Top    #17
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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    I agree with Brushpup, the third reply to your OP told you that you needed a good test kit and several after reitterated that. Apparently you decided not to take the advice. And now a month later you come back with the same problem and still haven't gotten a good test kit. We're not like the pool store. We don't try to sell you anything that enhances our pocket book. We recommend getting a good test kit because we know what works, and it's much cheaper to invest in a good kit so you'll know exactly what's going on in your pool and can take the appropriate steps to fix it.

    You can get a good testament to how bad pool store testing is by just taking a look at your CYA numbers. On July 24th you posted a CYA of 250 and then on August 26th you posted a CYA of 134. There's no way for that to happen unless you replaced half of your water and didn't continue to use chlorine sources that added CYA (Trichlor & Dichlor).

    I know it seems like we bombard you with getting a test kit, but we do that for good reason.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    I ordered the TF 100. My pool guy has the TF as well and he must not be using it or not know how to use it outside of basic testing. Should I wait for the test kit to begin the SLAM process to determine OCL? In the last month, I don't know what percent but, I have added a lot of water (with all the backwashing) and I drained it down 18" on Sunday at the recommendation of my pool service, then refilled. So my CYA may be accurate with all the exchanges/adding water.

    Thanks
    30K gallons, 18x36, Intellichlor IC40 SWG, Sand filter, Intelliflo 1.5 HP, TF 100

  19. Back To Top    #19
    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Well, it's hard to know what 18" did to your CYA dilution without some dimesions, but it is quite likely still too high. You can't perform a SLAM without the FAS/DPD test nor can you do an OCLT without a DPD test at minimum. As for your pool guy, he more likely doesn't understand what to do with the results, or is just not doing what he should.

    Please add your pool info to tour signature line.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: Low chlorine/No free chlorine

    Your pool service is who recommended the chemicals to get you to either the 250CZyA or the 133 CYA, they also seem to have the correct TF test kit but are not testing correctly or applying the CYA/Chlorine logic we teach/ use here.

    It is critical you understand that when your CYA is too high, you will get uncontrolled algae growth and a very difficult to manage pool unless you use very high FC levels. I am speaking of an FC in the 7-8 range at a minimum and a target closer to 10fc.

    The pool store methods are counter to the methods we use here. You need to either test your own values and make your own decisions based on knowledge and be clear in about a week or blindly follow the pools stores suggestions and hope its not another month before you are done. Doing both pool store and TFP will get you nowhere.
    -- Guy --
    10K gallons in 21' Round 52 inch wall Aqualeader AG, Hayward Power Flow LX 1.5 HP pump motor, Hayward Perflex EC50AC DE filter w/Cellulose, Wide mouth skimmer, 2013 new Diver Dan (craigslist) to replace the faded old Hayward AquaBug. TF-100

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