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Thread: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results requested

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    Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results requested

    Hi Guys,

    11,000 Gallon In-ground Pebble Tec Pool
    Sand Filter
    Phoenix, AZ metro area (i.e. High Summer Temps, Full Sun on Pool all day)

    Recently discovered this site and have been trying to absorb all the great info.
    It has motivated me to leave pool store testing and chemicals behind and move to BBB and a Taylor K-2600.

    I've been practicing with the test kit and I think I've got it down ... even the challenging CYA test.

    Prior to this, I'd been caring for the pool with Leslie's Tri-Chlor tabs, 73% Cal Hypo (Leslie's Power Powder Plus) for shock, Muriatic Acid, and Baking Soda.

    It is on this site that I learned of the evils of CYA, and started seriously testing for it on my own.

    On Aug 7, I got the following test results:
    Water Appearance: Very Clear
    FC - 1.0 (25ml test)
    CC - 0.2
    pH - 7.5
    TA - 110
    CH - didn't test this time
    CYA - 120

    My goals were to shock the pool to bring up FC and get rid of remaining CC, and to lower CYA via drain and refill. I backwashed down to the bottom of the skimmer level and refilled with fresh water to try to lower CYA, and added two 1lb. bags of 73% Cal-Hypo (Leslie's Power Powder Plus). I plan on switching to bleach/liquid chlor as part of BBB, but I've got bags of Cal-Hypo around so am using that for now (understanding that it will raise my pH, TA, and CH for now).


    Aug 8 test:
    Water Appearance: Very Clear
    FC - 8.0 (25ml test)
    CC - 0.2
    pH - 7.7
    TA - 110
    CH - 320
    CYA - 110

    I guess I was expecting FC to go up by more after adding that much Cal-Hypo, but I figure my high CYA was to blame. So, this time I drained about half the pool via backwash and refilled with fresh water. I then added three more 1lb bags of 73% Cal-Hypo, and let the filter run over night.


    This morning's test (Aug 9):
    Water Appearance: Very Clear
    FC - 10.0 (10ml test)
    CC - hard to tell. 5 drops of R-0003 turned it a verrrrry slight shade of pink, cleared up instantly on one drop of R-0871.
    pH - 7.7
    TA - 120
    CH - 360
    CYA - 60

    Yea! Aggressive drain and refill got the CYA down to nice levels (hopefully ditching the Tri-Chlor tabs will keep it there). But I'm still a bit puzzled why 3 bags of Cal-Hypo only got my FC to 10.0 and seemingly still left a trace of CC. I guess the fact that I replaced half my pool with fresh water explains the 10.0 FC rating (or perhaps I don't fully understand the expected effects of adding the Cal-Hypo), but why still the trace of CC?

    Anyway, added a cup of Muriatic Acid to try to get the pH and TA down, and will retest again tomorrow.

    Any advice, comments, critiques are welcome.

    Thanks.
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Welcome to tfp, azpooleo

    Quote Originally Posted by azpooleo
    Aggressive drain and refill to the CYA down to nice levels (hopefully ditching the Tri-Chlor tabs will keep it there).


    Quote Originally Posted by azpooleo
    But I'm still a bit puzzled why 3 bags of Cal-Hypo only got my FC to 10.0 and seemingly still left a trace of CC.
    Sounds like your chlorine is doing some work. I would raise up your FC level to your SLAM level and do a Overnight Chlorine Loss Test (OCLT) tonight to see if their are organics in your pool. See: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...king_your_pool and http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...rnight_fc_test

    You should stop using the cal-hypo as it seems your fill water is already high (your CH level went up when doing the big drain/refill), no need to unnecessarily add more.
    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

    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    Quote Originally Posted by azpooleo
    But I'm still a bit puzzled why 3 bags of Cal-Hypo only got my FC to 10.0 and seemingly still left a trace of CC.
    Sounds like your chlorine is doing some work. I would raise up your FC level to your SLAM level and do a Overnight Chlorine Loss Test (OCLT) tonight to see if their are organics in your pool. See: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...king_your_pool and http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...rnight_fc_test

    You should stop using the cal-hypo as it seems your fill water is already high (your CH level went up when doing the big drain/refill), no need to unnecessarily add more.
    Yes. Hard water here in PHX. House has a water softener, but not outdoor water.

    I will read up on SLAM and OCLT and go get some liquid chlor.

    Thanks for the reply!
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by azpooleo
    This morning's test (Aug 9):
    Water Appearance: Very Clear
    FC - 10.0 (10ml test)
    CC - hard to tell. 5 drops of R-0003 turned it a verrrrry slight shade of pink, cleared up instantly on one drop of R-0871.
    pH - 7.7
    TA - 120
    CH - 360
    CYA - 60

    Yea! Aggressive drain and refill got the CYA down to nice levels (hopefully ditching the Tri-Chlor tabs will keep it there). But I'm still a bit puzzled why 3 bags of Cal-Hypo only got my FC to 10.0 and seemingly still left a trace of CC. I guess the fact that I replaced half my pool with fresh water explains the 10.0 FC rating (or perhaps I don't fully understand the expected effects of adding the Cal-Hypo), but why still the trace of CC?

    Anyway, added a cup of Muriatic Acid to try to get the pH and TA down, and will retest again tomorrow.

    Any advice, comments, critiques are welcome.

    Thanks.
    Go swimming

    You're there. Sounds like all you need to do now is maintain pH and FC and vacuum when needed.
    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: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320
    Go swimming

    You're there. Sounds like all you need to do now is maintain pH and FC and vacuum when needed.

    Thanks for the reply, Richard.

    So, you think I'm ok even though I've seemingly got a bit of CC remaining? No need to SLAM? I'd sure like to avoid it as my daughter is having a pool party in one week and I'd be concerned about raising the FC to SLAM levels so soon before.

    According to the Pool Calculator and the Chlorine/CYA chart on this site, an FC of 7 seems like a good target for me.
    But, 10 is still swimmable? I guess I'm not really sure how high an FC level can go before I have to keep people out of the pool?
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

  6. Back To Top    #6
    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Again, I would do the OCLT at the SLAM level since you had high chlorine usage (also given your history of high cya). If you pass, then you are great shape, and if you fail, you have work to do before the party. Better to know now.

    If the CC clears up with one drop, then you are fine there...but that doesn't mean you don't have organics.
    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: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    Again, I would do the OCLT at the SLAM level since you had high chlorine usage (also given your history of high cya). If you pass, then you are great shape, and if you fail, you have work to do before the party. Better to know now.

    If the CC clears up with one drop, then you are fine there...but that doesn't mean you don't have organics.

    Assuming I did SLAM tonight, got my FC up to 24, as recommended for my CYA level, and assuming I passed the first Overnight test, how long do you estimate it would take to get FC back down to a swimmable level?

    I guess that's the one hole in my current pool chem knowledge - Assuming CC is zero, what is the highest FC level that is safe for swimmers?
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

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    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    what is the highest FC level that is safe for swimmers?
    Any FC below SLAM value is just fine.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh
    what is the highest FC level that is safe for swimmers?
    Any FC below SLAM value is just fine.

    Thanks, Dave.

    I did some more looking around the site and learned more about this too.

    I'm really shocked at how little I knew before coming on this site, especially regarding the effects of high CYA.

    I'm kinda ashamed at how long I just went by "if the pool looks good, it is good" and threw some tabs and a pack of shock in once in a while.
    Taking it much more seriously now.

    Thanks to everyone for their advice and comments!
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    Again, I would do the OCLT at the SLAM level since you had high chlorine usage (also given your history of high cya). If you pass, then you are great shape, and if you fail, you have work to do before the party. Better to know now.

    If the CC clears up with one drop, then you are fine there...but that doesn't mean you don't have organics.

    I decided to go ahead and SLAM the pool.

    Got up to 24 FC by midnight last night (as noted appropriate for my 60 CYA).

    Got up at 6am this morning to test .... 20 FC.

    Hmmmm ... I guess something is eating it. SLAM continuing.
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Please edit your signature to include information about the pool such as pool type (above ground or in ground), surface (vinyl, plaster, or fiberglass), size in gallons, pump brand and horsepower, filter type (sand, DE, or cartridge), filter brand and size, and any water features, cleaning systems, and if there is a spa (attached or detached). That will keep us from having to hunt for the information in your first post.

    Be sure to brush the pool, including all the nooks and cranies to make sure everything gets good chlorine exposure. Behind ladders and inside light niches are common places for algae to hide.
    TFP Moderator
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    harleysilo's Avatar
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    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    I've seen some recent pics that would blow your mind, people pull out their lights and all kinds of nasty comes out. Have you ever taken the light out? Since you have a party coming up I'd do it!
    18'x43' Sport Pool
    19,000 Gallons Vinyl Liner 3'-3.5'-4'
    SWCG and D.E. Filter
    Test Kits - Pool Calculator - Chlorine/CYA Chart - Pool School

    Secret Weapon for Pool Chemistry Testing

  13. Back To Top    #13

    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by zea3
    Please edit your signature to include information about the pool such as pool type (above ground or in ground), surface (vinyl, plaster, or fiberglass), size in gallons, pump brand and horsepower, filter type (sand, DE, or cartridge), filter brand and size, and any water features, cleaning systems, and if there is a spa (attached or detached). That will keep us from having to hunt for the information in your first post.

    Be sure to brush the pool, including all the nooks and cranies to make sure everything gets good chlorine exposure. Behind ladders and inside light niches are common places for algae to hide.
    Signature added ... and I've been brushing 2 or 3 times a day for the last few days.
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

  14. Back To Top    #14

    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by harleysilo
    I've seen some recent pics that would blow your mind, people pull out their lights and all kinds of nasty comes out. Have you ever taken the light out? Since you have a party coming up I'd do it!
    Interesting thought. I replaced the bulb about a month and a half ago, and had it all pulled out. Everything looked clean in there.

    My pool is pretty smooth and simple, not many nooks and crannies, no ladders or anything like that. 3 "Wedding Cake" style steps on one end, and a bench under the small waterfall fountain, and I make sure to brush those well with the rest of the pool.
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

  15. Back To Top    #15
    harleysilo's Avatar
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    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Are you running the water feature while slamming, or at least getting some chlorinated water run through it?
    18'x43' Sport Pool
    19,000 Gallons Vinyl Liner 3'-3.5'-4'
    SWCG and D.E. Filter
    Test Kits - Pool Calculator - Chlorine/CYA Chart - Pool School

    Secret Weapon for Pool Chemistry Testing

  16. Back To Top    #16

    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by harleysilo
    Are you running the water feature while slamming, or at least getting some chlorinated water run through it?

    No, I was not ... I will start that. Thanks.

    Added half-gallon of 10% Liquid Chlor and retested after one hour. Up to 22 FC.

    Added another half gallon and will re-test after another hour.

    Desert sun is about to start blasting the pool full on in another hour ... I wonder how much of a challenge keeping SLAM level will be?
    Luckily I found a relatively inexpensive source of 10% LC yesterday.

    Onward....
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

  17. Back To Top    #17

    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Well, I've put the rest of the 10% LC I had on hand into the pool ... that's should put me over SLAM level for my CYA ... but today's sunlight will burn some off, and I'll test at night fall to see where I'm at. I'll get some more tonight in case I have another day of SLAM ahead tomorrow.

    I'm running the waterfall to get Chlor through that system (thanks for the reminder, harleysilo!), and have scrubbed every area of the pool I can reach with a fine tooth comb - the pool, the inside of the skimmer, inside the auto water leveler, inside the in deck pool chlorinator (it's used with tabs, so I'll never be using that again!), everywhere!

    The only downer was after all that scrubbing in the morning heat, I sure wanted to jump in the pool!

    Hope you all don't mind the play-by-play of my SLAM ... I figure any mistakes I make can be caught early by one of you experts.

    Thanks.
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

  18. Back To Top    #18
    Smykowski's Avatar
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    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by azpooleo
    3 "Wedding Cake" style steps on one end... and I make sure to brush those well with the rest of the pool.
    I assume you mean under, behind, inside, and generally every surface of those steps? If you have railings and they're hollow, pour a little bleachwater/SLAM water in there too. Those things are great for getting in and out of the pool, but terrible for circulation.
    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

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by Smykowski
    Quote Originally Posted by azpooleo
    3 "Wedding Cake" style steps on one end... and I make sure to brush those well with the rest of the pool.
    I assume you mean under, behind, inside, and generally every surface of those steps? If you have railings and they're hollow, pour a little bleachwater/SLAM water in there too. Those things are great for getting in and out of the pool, but terrible for circulation.

    I've scrubbed them up good several times, and will keep doing so.

    No railings, ladders, or anything like that in our pool.
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

  20. Back To Top    #20

    Re: Moving to BBB ... advice/comments on test results reques

    Quote Originally Posted by harleysilo
    I've seen some recent pics that would blow your mind, people pull out their lights and all kinds of nasty comes out. Have you ever taken the light out? Since you have a party coming up I'd do it!

    I went ahead and pulled the light out to let SLAM water get in the hole. I'll leave it out until SLAM is over. Scrubbed in there as best I could without getting in the pool.
    11,000 Gal In Ground Pebble Tec, Sand Filter, 1hp Emerson Pump Motor, Small Waterfall Fountain, Phoenix, AZ area

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