I am brand new to this forum and I've had an Intex-type steel set round above ground 15'x48" just over 5,000 gallon pool since the beginning of July.
I knew nothing about taking care of a pool so I took advice and bought supplies from a local pool supply store (a chain), and I used my wonderful little pool every single day, thinking everything was going fine until about a week ago when I started to notice the pool water a tiny bit cloudy, and when I rubbed my foot over the part of the pool where the sides meet the floor, some cloudy stuff came up.
Also I have 2 washcloths tied to the bottom of my ladder to protect the vinyl floor, and they looked the tiniest bit green to me.
All summer long, I never did get a decent understanding of what all the numbers or components mean for testing; the store sold me strips and all the colors were always in the "normal" range! In fact, my chlorine level was always off the color chart strong, or at least at the strongest color. I did not shock on a regular basis, just kept a pool tab in the floater that the store sold me.
The only thing I could decipher when I noticed the slightly cloudy water was my pH was a bit low (below 7.2). The store manager had me add soda ash to boost the pH, then Algae Guard by HTH, then shock it with a DOUBLE dose of their powdered Chlor-Brite.
I did it all as directed, spreading it out over more than 12 hours. The pool got even cloudier, and the consistency of the water was, and is STILL, slimy! It's weird, like the water itself is made of oil, or as if someone put lotion in the pool. There is no oil on the surface, but if I skim the pool there are like soap bubbles on top of the water that don't go away. It's still cloudy and just gross!
I went back to the same store that got me into this mess and they sold me a water clarifier called Pool First Aid. I've put it in twice, and it's helped, but the water is still really awful. I don't have any kind of vacuum system except the one that attaches to a garden hose, and my filter is the crummy little cartridge one that came with the pool.
The other thing that really bothers me is that I used to constantly see little insects squirming on the surface after they'd accidentally landed in the pool; now as soon as a bug lands in the water it dies immediately-I've seen it several times! The HTH label says it's hazardous to living things! I'm so willing to do anything to take good care of my pool but I have no idea what I'm doing.
I feel like I've ruined my pool and I cry about it daily; I was so happy to have it and thought I was taking good care of it, but it's gone horribly wrong. What do I do? Drain it for the year?
I'm in CT and it will be getting cold soon, but it is still perfect swimming weather for a little while longer. I'm afraid to even drain it the way it is now for fear of leaving a toxic residue on the pool walls that will start me off wrong next year. Throw it out and get a new pool? I'm so discouraged.