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Thread: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

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    Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Hi all,

    New to the forum but have been reading the TFP site and got one of the test kits a while ago. I'm a medical provider and brew beer so I'm good with basic Chemistry and pH (Acid base balance)

    My question: For regular adding of liquid bleach to keep the FC at maintenance levels do I need to adjust the pH first?

    Here in Austin our tap water is super basic IE pH around 8 all the way to 8.1. I am having to use a lot of acid to keep my levels where TFP and the kits recommend. No biggie. I know before I shock the pool I am supposed to adjust the pH and get it to around 7.4.

    The prior owners used cheap *** tabs and the CYA is off the charts. Austin is in a drought and IF (City is being strict about this) I could drain and refill the pool it would cost me around $600. My plan was to just use liquid bleach all summer and let the CYA evaporate and dilute out with regular topping off of the pool.

    Thanks!

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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    CYA is not known to evaporate out. Now some have a CYA drop in the summer but if yours is off the charts then it will take a lot of time.
    Not knowing your number then it is hard to suggest the amount of bleach to use.

    For how to add acid and bleach.
    I usually pour acid in the return jet and then chlorine in the strainer.
    I have dumped chlorine first also doesnt matter, just dont let them mix at full strength.
    Just give the chlorine some time to get out of the returns. Acid and Chlorine together produce a as that you dont want to breath.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Welcome to TFP!

    If the PH is out of range, as you describe, you should adjust the PH. In normal day to day usage, that doesn't need to be before adding chlorine, but it shouldn't be put off very long either. When SLAMing the pool PH adjustments needs to be before you add chlorine because very high chlorine levels make the PH test un-usable.
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    Smykowski's Avatar
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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Welcome to the forum!!

    CYA doesn't evaporate. The only way CYA leaves the pool is when water is removed from the pool and replace with water that is CYA free (and evaporation of water doesn't count - when water evaporates, the CYA concentration simply rises). What test kit are you using, and what result are you getting?

    Liquid bleach won't change the pH at all. pH should be kept in range for other reasons, but not specifically for a bleach addition.
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Welcome to TFP!

    Well there is a problem. CYA does not evaporate or dilute. Think of it like salt. That only way to lower the level is to physically remove the water ... backwashing, splash out, etc.

    Bleach is effectively pH neutral, so no need to adjust pH just because of using bleach.
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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Sorry read this afterwards.

    Me:
    Austin TX
    Pool: In ground 27,600 gallons, installed in early 1980s
    Gunite with plaster over that.
    300 lbs Hayward pro series Sand filter with 20 gpm filtration rate
    Hayward Super Pump, 1hp
    My water is Crystal clear but the plaster is stained a little blue from old heater coil vomiting into it. Thanks old owners!

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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Cool guys!! Thank you for clarifying about CYA. Again Leslies are a bunch of turds. They told me it does evaporate. New plan. Just keep on going with what I am doing but plan on it taking longer.

    I was out of town last week, got home and did a big backwash. Then topped off with tap water. So my pH is back to around 8.05 The oak trees and everything else is dropping a ton of pollen right now and I'm having to backwash a lot.

    CYA is at 120 today down from 140 a month ago Time and more water...

    I get it: As water evaporates it leaves the CYA and actually increases the concentration but then dilutes out with new tap water.

    Will correct pH before adding liquid bleach today and correct pH for maintenance. I'm not sure how I worded that but I understand Bleach doesn't affect pH.

    I have the TF-100 plus a pretty high end pH meter that corrects for temperature I use for brewing.

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    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Quote Originally Posted by 18DPA View Post
    Pool: In ground 27,600 gallons, installed in early 1980s
    Gunite with plaster over that.
    300 lbs Hayward pro series Sand filter with 20 gpm filtration rate
    Hayward Super Pump, 1hp
    Take that part of your last post and copy it. Paste it into your forum signature so it shows up in every post. Makes it easier for the experts to help you out by knowing the details of your pool in every post you make.

    To add it to your signature, click the Settings link at the top right of the page. Then click on the Edit Signature link on the left side of the page. Paste that info in there and save it.
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    To add it to your signature, click the Settings link at the top right of the page. Then click on the Edit Signature link on the left side of the page. Paste that info in there and save it.[/QUOTE]

    Doing it right now.

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Your pool can be maintained clean and swimmable with your numbers. I've done it, starting with about twice the CYA you have. I don't recommend it, but it can be done. For starters, you will be stuck using the FAS-DPD tester for every FC test. The color-matching just doesn't read high enough for your maintenance level.

    If it's not criminal to water lawns or flowers, use pool water and then replace it with fresh fill water. It will lower CYA at a snail's pace, but it is SO much easier to maintain things with a reasonable CYA level.

    You already know you'll be using a lot of acid. In time, you will learn your pool's appetite. In my case, every inch of water added to the pool meant a cup of acid to keep pH in check. In addition to the normal dose. But it did make things easier. Drop the hose it, pour the acid into the hose stream, set the kitchen timer so I don't forget to shut the water off later.
    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: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    One more quick question. Home Depot had 1 gallon jugs of "Concentrated bleach" It didn't have the actual sodium hypochlorite % but had a dilution instruction for various "outdoor" cleaning projects like cleaning concrete or vinyl siding. Any ideas what that stuff is?

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Quote Originally Posted by 18DPA View Post
    One more quick question. Home Depot had 1 gallon jugs of "Concentrated bleach" It didn't have the actual sodium hypochlorite % but had a dilution instruction for various "outdoor" cleaning projects like cleaning concrete or vinyl siding. Any ideas what that stuff is?
    If they're ashamed to tell you how weak/strong it is, you don't want it.
    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: Regular maintenance with super basic tap water?? pH before Bleach?

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320 View Post
    Your pool can be maintained clean and swimmable with your numbers. I've done it, starting with about twice the CYA you have. I don't recommend it, but it can be done. For starters, you will be stuck using the FAS-DPD tester for every FC test. The color-matching just doesn't read high enough for your maintenance level.

    Encouraging !!!


    If it's not criminal to water lawns or flowers, use pool water and then replace it with fresh fill water. It will lower CYA at a snail's pace, but it is SO much easier to maintain things with a reasonable CYA level.

    Great to hear this!! My wife and I were wondering about this. Didn't know if it would kill the plants.

    You already know you'll be using a lot of acid. In time, you will learn your pool's appetite. In my case, every inch of water added to the pool meant a cup of acid to keep pH in check. In addition to the normal dose. But it did make things easier. Drop the hose it, pour the acid into the hose stream, set the kitchen timer so I don't forget to shut the water off later.
    Kitchen timer or phone timer. Already learned this one the hard way.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320 View Post
    If they're ashamed to tell you how weak/strong it is, you don't want it.
    Thats what I figured. Just like brewing if you don't know what you're putting into it don't use it.
    Last edited by 18DPA; 05-06-2014 at 09:16 AM. Reason: ediiting signature

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