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Thread: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

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    How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    My pool was fine until our area flooded including our town's power station and they put us on limited power with explicit instructions to not run anything unnecessary like pool pumps. So 3 weeks later we had a green pool. I've been dumping 2-3 (121oz) jugs of bleach into it everyday 1 in the morning and 2 at night went out and got the sand filter last week because i got sick of dealing with the pitiful pump and paper carts. I've also been adding 8-12 oz of HTH PH minus because I had some left from last year. I was hoping to get lucky but finally convinced my wife that we need the $60 test kit. Pool has gone from dark green to lime green and I can see (barely) about a foot down. Been brushing 2-3 times a day and i can definitely see stuff kicking up like small particles. I bought some Bioguard Sparkle up to try to get the smaller stuff but it was so expensive I don't want to use it until the pool is clean because the 1/8 cup I put in made the sand filter pressure skyrocket and I had to backwash. Oh and I also added 1.75lbs of CYA and vacuuming doesn't pull much off the bottom but when I pull out the leaf basket on the filter there is yellow stuff in the bottom. Mustard Algae or pollen? I don't know.

    I will be ordering the test kit by Thursday. My questions are...

    1) Is there anything I can do in the meantime to keep it from getting worse?
    2) Is there an amount of bleach 8.25% that will damage my pool or pump/filter?
    3) Or should I just let everything go so that I can accurately test the Ph and alkalinity when the kit arrives?
    4) How much does bleach usually raise alkalinity and PH?

    Thank you in advance I understand it's difficult to give advice without numbers but I'm worried mainly about any damage I may do if I throw 3-4 jugs of bleach in at once.
    6000 ga, Summer Escapes 16' AG, Intex 1200gph sand filter

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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Welcome to TFP!

    If it were me, I would wait until I got the test kit. Without it, you really don't know what is going on.

    The amount of bleach that it would take to cause damage is very, very high. Remember that bleach is the same thing as your granules or tablets are, minus the stabilizers and other extra substances like calcium. It is safe to use in your pool. But it is best to add it only when the pump is running since bleach left to settle onto the floor or other surfaces in your pool can bleach your liner.

    Bleach is essentially pH neutral and has no real effect on TA.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    A key piece of info missing is your CYA level ... that determines the required maintenance and SLAM FC levels that are required. So, likely best to wait and while doing so, read Pool School (you will need to follow the SLAM process) and learn the poolcalculator.com

    Using the calculator I can see that one 121oz jug of 8.25% bleach is adding 13ppm of FC. So unless your CYA is pretty high, you could easily be adding too much FC if you add 3 jugs at once.

    BTW, bleach is effectively ph neutral, it will raise the pH when added, but as it is consumed will lower the pH back down.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Ok I am guessing that my CYA is btwn 40 and 50 or a minimum of 30 because I added 1.75lbs which would (according to the instructions bring a 4000ga pool to 40ppm or something like that. I had been adding ph minus to bring the ph down occasionally because i had read that chlorine will bring up the ph so should i add some A&H washing soda to bring it back up? Is it better to have it too high or too low?

    Thank you for the amazingly quick response.
    6000 ga, Summer Escapes 16' AG, Intex 1200gph sand filter

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    You do not need to adjust the pH every time you use bleach. You will want to adjust the pH to the lower 7s before starting the SLAM process.

    Unless you can test and post the current pH value, you can not guess if you should raise it or lower it.

    If the CYA is 40ppm, then the shock level for SLAMing is 16ppm and you should not let the FC get above about 24ppm or you may start to cause damage. Given that 1 bottle adds 13ppm ... adding 2 a the same time is putting you in the danger zone.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Since you have a decent guess at your CYA, I think you would be perfectly safe to add a quart of Clorox each evening until your kit gets in. That'll keep you about breaking even and may even start to clear your pool some.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Test kit shipped today. My wife said "for $60 our pool better be sparkling by next week". I've decided to just keep an eye on the chlorine and not let it fall below "high" on the test strips. I'm also brushing it twice a day. I want to be able to get an accurate ph reading before I start slamming. Thanks for all the advice, I'm sure I'll have more questions.
    6000 ga, Summer Escapes 16' AG, Intex 1200gph sand filter

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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Ok so I got my test kit today and first tried to measure the FC and got to 100 drops and realized I should have used the .5 method so I know the Chlorine is over 20 but I didn't do the CC yet. My CYA read 70-80 I think and my PH was at 7.4 with an Alkalinity of 150. should I first drain down some of the pool to lower the CYAor fix the alkalinity?
    6000 ga, Summer Escapes 16' AG, Intex 1200gph sand filter

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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Quote Originally Posted by nullandv01d
    Ok so I got my test kit today and first tried to measure the FC and got to 100 drops and realized I should have used the .5 method so I know the Chlorine is over 20 but I didn't do the CC yet. My CYA read 70-80 I think and my PH was at 7.4 with an Alkalinity of 150. should I first drain down some of the pool to lower the CYAor fix the alkalinity?
    You cannot trust pH with a FC higher than 10... Just worry about FC for now while you are SLAMing your pool...
    13500 Gal. Above Ground. Vinyl. Hayward E-100 Highrate Sand Filter with Hayward Power Flow LX pump. Installed 2006.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    I would suggest replacing water to get down below a CYA of 50ppm ... then if the FC is < 10ppm, verify the pH and then start the SLAM process. Once complete, then you can adjust TA if you want.
    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: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    I began the slamming process today. I vacuumed the pool as best i could without being able to see. Mainly to bring the water down a little because it rained. Then I checked the chlorine levels

    FC - 19
    CC - 0?

    I added the amount of bleach to bring it up to about 30. I will check again in a couple hours and bring it back up then check before I go to bed and in the morning.
    Is it normal to have a greenish color water without any CC? I have a yellowish substance that builds up on the ladder but disappears when you move the water around. The pool is somewhat under a large maple tree (only place in the yard). Could it be pollen?

    I don't want to drain the pool 30% like the calculator said because I have no way to get it out to the road yet and it would flood my yard so I am going by the chart with a CYA level of 70-80.
    6000 ga, Summer Escapes 16' AG, Intex 1200gph sand filter

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    The presence of algae does not neccesairly mean you will have CC ... thus the 3 different criteria to stop the SLAMing.
    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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  13. Back To Top    #13

    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Last night
    Fc 38
    Cc .5

    This morning
    Fc 35
    Cc .5

    Continuing to SLAM. As far as the pool being clear...if the OCLT is <1 and cc is 0 but the pool is still cloudy am I done as long as its not green? And there is an oily looking layer in spots on the surface of the water. Any guesses?
    6000 ga, Summer Escapes 16' AG, Intex 1200gph sand filter

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    Charlie_R's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    If you cannot CLEARLY see all parts of the bottom of your pool from one vantage point, you are not done SLAMing your pool.
    15'x48" 4500 gallon Intex pool, buried 1.5 ft. Pac-Fab Dynamo 3/4 hp pump. Hayward S180T sand filter, bought used. Taylor K-2006 test kit. Rocket mass heater based wood fired pool heater.

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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Can't high PH or Alkalinity make the water cloudy or is that a cloudy you can still see through. I ordered a 2 oz bottle of the 871 because I have a feeling I'm going to run out fast
    6000 ga, Summer Escapes 16' AG, Intex 1200gph sand filter

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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Can't high PH or Alkalinity make the water cloudy
    Essentially,no. Did you read that on this forum?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    I've seen it on many things but maybe they are referring to the scaling and that gives it the appearance of cloudiness. So what about the oily appearance on the surface? Anyone know what that could be?
    6000 ga, Summer Escapes 16' AG, Intex 1200gph sand filter

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    techguy's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Until you have gotten all of the algae killed, focus on two things, keeping your FC in the shock range and filter, filter, filter. You can help by vacuuming to waste any heavy debris, brushing the walls daily, removing and cleaning inside and behind any lights or ladders. PH, hardness and all the other stuff can wait until after you have clear water.
    -- 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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    Re: How to keep the algae at bay until I get a test kit

    Yup yup doin it. I just keep reading and coming up with questions. I'm bordering on obsession. My wife made a new rule that if my sentence involves the word pool, she doesn't want to hear it.
    6000 ga, Summer Escapes 16' AG, Intex 1200gph sand filter

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