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Thread: Surprised by test results!!!

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    Join Date
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    Surprised by test results!!!

    First of all let me start by saying this site has been exactly what I've been looking for. I received the TF-100 today, but unfortunately I won't be testing the CYA because the view tube broke in the box. Meg said she'd mail another one btw. My wife and I just bought a house and neither of us know anything about taking care of a pool. The pool store guy got me on a "lazy mans" routine of Power powder plus and pool perfect once a week. After 2 short weeks I quickly learned it wasn't normal and not to trust the pool store. Lol!!! Here are today's results with a pic of the pool. Please let me know what my main priority needs to be. I imagine it involves chlorine. Haha!!!!

    FC - .5
    CC - 0
    TA - 90
    pH - 7.8
    CYA - TBD
    CH - 540

    18k gal, IG plaster, 2hp pump, 425sqft hayward filter, polaris 280, elevated spa with waterfall.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Surprised by test results!!!

    Welcome to TFP!

    Hard to say without a CYA result. I would lower the pH to mid 7s and raise the FC up to around 6-8ppm and keep it there.

    How does the water look?
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Surprised by test results!!!

    Welcome! Thats a really nice pool you have there. I like it.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Surprised by test results!!!

    Welcome to TFP !
    Have you ever had the water tested by the pool store or any other test kit and what were those CYA results ? Not that they can be trusted, just curious.
    You'll need to get some chlorine in the water preferably liquid chlorine (bleach) ASAP.
    Very nice pool !😎
    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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    bridgman's Avatar
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    Re: Surprised by test results!!!

    Non-expert comments (this was going to be first response but apparently I type too slowly) :

    1. Yeah, you need some chlorine. We don't know what the CYA levels are so my first thought would be "not too much, maybe take free chlorine (FC) up to a few ppm".

    2. If you had any idea what the previous owner used for maintenance (eg empty bottles & tubs lying around) that might give a chance of guessing whether CYA is most likely to be near-zero, sky-high, or about right.

    3. CH seems really high, almost like the pool has been maintained using Power Powder Plus, which adds calcium hardness (CH)

    You'll probably get told to stop using PPP and switch to liquid chlorine (bleach, chlorinating liquid etc..)

    4. pH is on the high side of OK, you'll probably need to read up on using muriatic acid to take the pH down.

    If you haven't done so, click on PoolMath near the top left, plug in your pool volume, then plug in your readings and look at the suggestions.

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    Cedar hot tub, 680 US gallons - Snorkel wood-burning heater, canoe paddle, "offline" Intex 1000 GPH pump/filter with skimmer

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Surprised by test results!!!

    Welcome!

    It's hard to say what your target FC level should be without knowing the CYA level, but .5 is too low even for zero CYA, so aim for 5ish, and use liquid bleach. All those powders they've been selling you have doubtless raised CYA and/or CH, so stop using them.

    With the high CH, you need to keep the pH towards the low end. Target 7.5 for now. Wait half an hour between the bleach and the acid additions.

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/calc.html will help you figure out the CSI as well as the necessary dosages.

    When you get your view tube, check the CYA level. Odds are pretty good that it will be astronomical.

    Sadly, the only economical way to deal with high CYA is by draining and refilling. I know how painful that is to think about, especially in a drought year. I took over a pool with huge CYA and wasn't able to drain the first year due to water restrictions. It can be done, but I don't recommend it. So if you have to drain some and you can still do it legally, do it. It might be worth a look at the water company website. Some allow a drain every three years without putting your water bill into the higher tier rates if you notify them in advance.

    A final few words about Calcium Hardness. One: those guidelines just aren't really practical in California where we have hard water and a lot of evaporation. So you will need to pay attention to CSI, especially as it gets late in the swim season. Two: use the 10 ml sample to save time and R-0012 reagent. Instructions With your 540 CH number, it really doesn't make a lot of difference if the test says 525 or 550. If you didn't order a speedstir, too bad. You should have. It's really useful for the CH test, and no one who owns one regrets buying it. When you need refills, order one.
    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.
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    Re: Surprised by test results!!!

    Thanks for all the quick replied. Man, draining was the one thing that has scared me from the start!!!! Seems like the next steps are raising the FC and dropping the pH.
    18k gal, IG plaster, 2hp pump, 425sqft hayward filter, polaris 280, elevated spa with waterfall.

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Surprised by test results!!!

    Welcome to the forum bmoocher! You've gotten good advice, so I just wanted to say welcome to TFP.
    TFP Moderator
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    28K Gal IG FreeForm, CLI Quartz, Pentair 36"SF & VS Pump, Dolphin M5, Rheem

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    edge's Avatar
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    Re: Surprised by test results!!!

    Welcome.
    I can relate to how you come into this. We bought a home last year with a pool. it was freshly filled and ready to go. Last year was easy peasy. Just added tablets and shocked here and there. This year...Not so much. After dumping $$$ into it to open it up and get it straight, getting pool stored. I just was getting so frustrated and felt defeated.

    I spent time with cheap kits and buying things I didn't need. The water looks awesome, I thought everything was perfect. WRONG. I finally realized I needed to get a real kit and test myself. My CYA was off the charts and the only fix is to drain 80% of my water and start over. I was using Trichlor Tabs. Which I didn't know was a problem until I found this site and advise. So I've been dropping water out 1 ft at the time and refilling. I have a vinyl lined pool and cannot drain all at once.

    The cya is coming down but still have a ways to go. I'm very happy to have found this site and method. It will save me alot of money and headache this year and the years to come.
    16'X32'X8' Vinyl Pond with Diving Board (Neck Breaker), 1.5 hp FOXX WhisperFlo(Not so quite anymore), Massive Lawn Egg (aka: Sand Filter), Coolcrete Pool deck (Burns feet to a crisp), Large wooden Multi level deck (Splinter City) with fire pit in center (Insurance company's nightmare.)

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