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Thread: Draining pool procedures to follow.

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    Draining pool procedures to follow.

    I am draining my pool this weekend in Phoenix Az and am curious if anyone has suggestions. I am renting pump from Home Depot and have a plaster pool about 17 yrs old. The water is old per Leslies Pool and very high in solids. I have a terrible mustard algae problem during the summer which may be due to flowering plants around the pool and 2 dogs that are constantly in and out of the pool during the summer. Chlorine and Chlorbrite knock it out for a day or two then its back.

    Leslies suggested a product called Purge that is to be put in the pool for 24 hours before I drain it. They said it will kill bacteria / algae that is in the pipes and sand filter. It is about $35 and I'm not sure if I should use this product.

    After draining, I am going to give the interior a spray down with liquid chlorine as a pool service person I ran into said it would kill any algae that may have attached into the plaster.

    Then I will refill and begin following the pool school recommendations I discovered on this wonderful site.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Draining pool procedures to follow.

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    First, I would not trust any test results that Leslie's gave you. I would highly recommend ordering one of the Recommended Test Kits and then testing the pool yourself and THEN decide if the pool really needs draining. The only reasons to need to drain are in the CYA or the CH are too high.

    If you are going to drain (I did it in Tucson), just rented a pump from HD and then once I could walk in it I used a (sort of weak) powerwasher and sprayed as much of the green toward the deep end that was still getting pumped out. I would not necessarily recommend spraying any bleach directly on the pool ... likely not needed.

    I can almost guarantee that the algae problems you were having had NOTHING to do with the plants or dogs, at least not directly. It was due to not maintaining enough chlorine in the water which is a function of your stabilizer (CYA) level. See the FC/CYA Chart.

    If your CH and CYA are reasonable, you can clear up anything by following the SLAM Process ... which you are going to have to do even if you fully drain and refill because there will always be some algae hiding somewhere.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Draining pool procedures to follow.

    No firsthand experience with a full drain, so I can't advise on that. However....draining because of high Total Dissolved Solids doesn't sound like a very good reason to me. For what it's worth, I have never tested my TDS, I suffer from very hard water, and my pool has been clear for three years now without any expensive pool store products - just bleach, muriatic acid, and trichlor pucks for vacations.

    However...if you've been maintaining the pool the pool store way, odds are very good you have very high CYA levels. You also live in Arizona, where Calcium buildup can be a problem. So draining it all and starting from scratch is probably not a bad idea.

    I wouldn't bother spraying bleach on the walls. For starters, you can kiss whatever clothes you're wearing when you do it goodbye. When you refill, you will have zero CYA, which puts shock level at 10. If you have a 20,000 gallon pool, it will only take 2 jugs of Chlorox 8.25% to get there, that's less than 10 bucks. Keeping it there for a couple days will likely cost less than that Purge stuff. And you'll have to add some bleach at startup anyway, so in reality, the added expense is even less.

    If you are serious about adopting TFPC methods, order a test kit now. You'll be working blind without it, right from the start. It would be like painting a picture in the dark. You'll get paint on the canvas, but it won't be right. And if you do get a green breakout again, SLAM it. That's what you've been doing, but for an extended period of time. I suspect your problem was that you never really killed the algae completely.
    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: Draining pool procedures to follow.

    Ok, I ordered the TF100 kit and have decided not to use the purge product from Leslie's. I will purchase the BBB today. The only other thing I should need for start up is stabilizer, correct? Is powder form from pool store OK. Thanks for the quick replies as it's suppose to rain here and since that doesn't happen often, thought it would be a good time to drain it. Btw, my CYA was very high, and it may be closer to 7 yrs since it was last drained, so I think it's time and am excited about using this forum to manage my pool.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Draining pool procedures to follow.

    What does "purchase the BBB" mean? You should not buy anything until you know you need it.

    You will certainly need stabilizer and you can get the powder from the pool store or even Walmart. And you will certainly need bleach. Beyond that, it depends on the test results after you get filled back up.

    Did you order the TF-100 from tftestkits or poolsupplyworld? PSW would get it here a little cheaper (shipping) and quicker I think ... but just barely.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Draining pool procedures to follow.

    I just meant I was going to purchase bleach borax and baking soda so I had it on hand.

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Draining pool procedures to follow.

    Quote Originally Posted by Encinitas
    I just meant I was going to purchase bleach borax and baking soda so I had it on hand.
    That's why we now use TFPC instead of BBB. You might not need baking soda; in fact I'd almost bet you won't since you live in the Southwest. And borax is optional. Many of us don;t use it at all. It's better to get everything balanced and stable before throwing an extra variable into the balancing equation.

    Granular CYA from the pool store, Walmart, Ace hardware, wherever, is just fine. Weigh it out, pour it in a sock or nylon, and tie it up with a string, then hang it in front of a return so it dissolves faster. It may take a week to register completely n the test, even after it's all dissolved. Also, aim low initially. It's real easy to add more CYA, but you see what a pain it is to lower it, and your pool may not be as big as you think.
    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: Draining pool procedures to follow.

    Pool is drained and should be filled shortly how much bleach should I add at start up for 12000 gal pool. I will start with 2 lbs of stabilizer in a sock and go from there. Thanks for all the help. D.

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Draining pool procedures to follow.

    Use pool math to figure out how much to add. I could do it for you, but you should learn how to use it. calc.html
    What CYA level are you shooting for ?
    Jeff
    24'x54" AG Morada RTR (by wilbar) 13'500 gal. Hayward Powerflo Matrix 1hp 2 speed. Hayward Perflex EC65 DE filter.

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    Re: Draining pool procedures to follow.

    Will try to start at 30 for cya. Sprayed the interior with bleach before refilling and it looks great! Just like new and 17 yrs old....ph was7.5 after the fill and added 2 gal liquid chlorine 10%.

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Re: Draining pool procedures to follow.

    That's fine to start out on the low end for your CYA. You can always raise it, but it's a pain the ...... to lower.
    Jeff
    24'x54" AG Morada RTR (by wilbar) 13'500 gal. Hayward Powerflo Matrix 1hp 2 speed. Hayward Perflex EC65 DE filter.

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