Okay - I feel like I know the answer to this but I just had to ask - should I be testing calcium hardness for my vinyl liner pool?
I have an inground, 35K gallon, grecian shape, vinyl pool....live in central Arkansas.
Our current liner is probably 10-12 years old....it is getting quite faded and we know we are on borrowed time before getting a new one. A hole developed in a corner at the end of last season. We chose to patch it and wait and see how it did.
I've done the BBB method the past couple years with fantastic results. My water is sparkly and clear and easy to maintain. We do use a local pool guy to open and close our pool and troubleshoot any major equipment needs. Other than that my husband and I do all of our own pool care. Last year, when we closed the pool, our pool guy asked how we tested the pool. I mentioned that I tested it myself using a drop kit and he went on and on about how inaccurate those can be - since the chemicals could be expired, etc. I tried to let it go in one ear and out the other. He asked if I tested for calcium and I said no - then he told me that I HAD to test for calcium because it is clear my water is "out of balance" since the liner is getting brittle. OMG. I thought the liner was getting brittle because it is over 10 years old and gets full sun all day long in hot Arkansas summer!
So after we opened and got the pool cleaned this year I tested calcium using the Taylor kit. I don't even know how to interpret the test. It took three drops to change colors. Is that high? Low? MORE IMPORTANTLY - DOES IT EVEN MATTER???????
We are going to push through this summer with our current liner - we've had to patch a couple of little holes - and replace it next summer.
Current readings (just cause I know someone will ask!)
FC - 3
CC - 0
pH - 7.4
alk - 90
CYA - 40
I just raised the alk yesterday and hung two tube socks of CYA (it was less than 20). I know our chlorine is low right now - will be adding more bleach tonight. We do best with a CYA around 70-80 with our amount of sun - still trying to get that up.
Thanks for any insight.
P.S. - the pool guy really is a nice guy - I trust him when it comes to fixing/replacing major equipment - he has taken care of this pool since it was installed (two owners ago). I think we just differ on our chemical philosophies.