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Thread: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

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    TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Just got a house with a 10,000g pool. The water looks clear and happy. (We are in Az.)
    Tried out my brand new Taylor K-2006c test kit...
    FC - 2.0 ( this is after I did a shock packet last night)
    CC - 0.5
    TA - 280
    PH - 8. Blood red
    That is as far as I got, as the TA number is freaking me out.

    So, from what I understand, I should muriatic acid the TA downfirst, right?
    Then, should I shock again? Pool school says my post shock FC number should be higher, correct?

    Please help!
    Thank you.

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    Smykowski's Avatar
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Welcome!

    TA is the last thing you should mess with. First priority is to get pH below 7.8, then add some chlorine to bring your FC up. Have you been reading pool school? Start with the link in my signature.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
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    UN1017's Avatar
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Welcome to TFP!

    You are correct. Getting your pH lowered is a priority and MA will be your way to do that. It's likely your pH is way over 8. Just knock it down in increments.

    What is your CYA level? It's important for two reasons. 1. It will dictate your SLAM level and 2. It may tell you that blindly throwing in "shock packets" may not be helping the situation.

    Get that pH down then redo your tests since it will be less scary...
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Don't sweat the TA. I use water with that level of TA as a replacement for my well water which is much higher than that. In Arizona, CH is the number you should be paying close attention to.
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Ok. I will do the Muriatic this evening, then check my numbers in the morning.
    I will include my CH and CYA tests then as well.

    I did look at pool school, and I guess I misunderstood that TA was the thing to control, in order to deal with PH.
    Thanks guys.
    I will be back on tomorrow.

    P.s. Do you have a good suggestion for where to store M Acid? That stuff is kinda brutal, isn't it?
    10,000 gallon Pebbletech inground pool
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    Phoenix, AZ.....Pool newbie 01/01/14

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    TA does influence pH. High TA can cause you to need to adjust pH frequently, but if stay on the pH, the TA will drop.

    I keep my muriatic acid in a plastic bucket so leaks are contained. Biggest worry is mixing it with chlorine, so keep them away from each other.
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Ok. Muriatic acid in overnight... new numbers:
    PH - 8 still.....but only half as many drops of acid demand reagent were needed to get the sample to proper ph color.
    TA - 260...down a smidge
    CH - 560
    CYA - 0
    I didn't even bother with chlorine testing this time. I will deal with that next.

    I will do another increment of MA tonight and retest.
    I will also go back to pool school to learn how to deal with my CYA and CH
    Then I will deal with shock.
    Sound good?
    Thank!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Side note: my husband and I cleaned the cartridges in filter...wow, gross. All clean now, though!
    Last home owners did absolutely nothing but chlorine cakes.....ever. I'm actually surprised things aren't worse.
    10,000 gallon Pebbletech inground pool
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    Phoenix, AZ.....Pool newbie 01/01/14

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Quote Originally Posted by wamster007 View Post
    Ok. Muriatic acid in overnight... new numbers:
    PH - 8 still.....but only half as many drops of acid demand reagent were needed to get the sample to proper ph color.
    TA - 260...down a smidge
    CH - 560
    CYA - 0
    I didn't even bother with chlorine testing this time. I will deal with that next.

    I will do another increment of MA tonight and retest.
    I will also go back to pool school to learn how to deal with my CYA and CH
    Then I will deal with shock.
    Sound good?
    Thank!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Side note: my husband and I cleaned the cartridges in filter...wow, gross. All clean now, though!
    Last home owners did absolutely nothing but chlorine cakes.....ever. I'm actually surprised things aren't worse.
    Just so you know... if you add acid with the filter running and dribble it in front of the return stream, then go around the pool once with the brush, it will have mixed pretty well. Probably within 30 minutes and certainly within an hour the pH will have moved and you can retest. You could get it fixed in one day and then go to town with the bleach.

    CYA can be added any time. Even while you're waiting for the pH to drop. Target 30 for now. By suspending it in a sock, you'll be able to backwash without fear of losing much.

    High CH can realistically only be lowered by draining. But I don't know where you live so we have no idea how scarce water is or how hard the water is or how likely you are to float the pool if you empty it. But 500 is manageable; you just need to pay close attention to pH and TA to keep the CSI neutral. Don't worry about that yet. As an aside, my CH dropped a huge amount when I switched from manual swirling to using the speedstir. It takes a lot of mixing. By hand, I'd guess the CH test for you should take at least ten minutes. There are instructions for how to use a smaller sample and have each drop count as 25 here, post #7.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    You've mentioned "shock" more than once. Around here, that's considered a warning sign. You have very high CH. Is that "shock packet" calcium hypochlorate? I'd bet it is, because your CYA is zero, so it's not dichlor. If I'm right, please don't add any more until your read up about chlorination in pool school. All powdered chlorines adds byproducts that will build up over time and cause you problems. You're on the edge with calcium. That's why nearly everyone here is using liquid bleach or a salt water generator once there are enough of the good byproducts. Otherwise your water will need to be replaced.
    20,000 gal in-ground plaster pool with sand filter. Replastered recently. Mostly adding bleach and acid. CYA was high when I took over.

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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    We use Unscented bleach around here wamster007. Hopefully you've stocked up on some. I would be very careful not to add anything in a packet of *shock* as it could add to your high calcium levels as SwimAustin has already mentioned. You don't want to drive your calcium through the stratosphere! Keep reading Pool School and How to SLAM your pool.
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    I have the shock.packets and the general bleach cakes from Costco.
    I have read that everyone here is using liquid bleach.
    So, you just test and use the chem calculator a couple times a week in order to know how much and when to use the liquid?
    I just bought the costco stuff, so I can return it and buy liquid bleach there.
    10,000 gallon Pebbletech inground pool
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Quote Originally Posted by wamster007 View Post
    I have the shock.packets and the general bleach cakes from Costco.
    I have read that everyone here is using liquid bleach.
    So, you just test and use the chem calculator a couple times a week in order to know how much and when to use the liquid?
    I just bought the costco stuff, so I can return it and buy liquid bleach there.
    Yes, return that stuff if you can. You test and add chlorine every day. It's like feeding the dog. Even if you don't want to play wth it today, it still needs to be fed. You should test and adjust pH every couple days until you know your pool better. If it looks like it only needs adjusting every week, then test every week. But until you know, daily is better. Pool Care Schedule.

    We advocate liquid bleach because the only byproduct is salt, which is essentially harmless. The shock powders will also add either Calcium or CYA, and CYA is acidic and messes with the pH and TA readings. The pucks also add CYA and mess with the pH. They can be used, but only if you have an understanding of the chemistry involved and can juggle three parameters at once. It's generally simpler to do things one ingredient at a time, because it seldom works out that you need to adjust all three parameters the same amount at the same time.

    What is your pH today? You need to get that settled and get some bleach in that pool before your next post says the water is cloudy or green.
    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: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Welcome to the forums wamster007.

    The chemicals you purchased from Costco are most likely Trichlor tablets and powdered Dichlor 'shock'. (I used the exact or very similar product from them for a little over one season as the cost during this months sale is very appealing.) Along with adding chlorine, both contain and will increase your CYA, potentially very quickly using the powder on a weekly basis, to the point of your pool being unmanageable in the event of an algae bloom. The higher your CYA, the higher you have to hold the Chlorine to get rid of the nasty stuff. Read up on the recommended Chlorine/CYA relationship at http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...art-slam-shock

    Reading the pool school instructions and a few threads on algae and its prevention will lead you to the understanding that unless you are frequently draining (vacuuming to waste for example) and adding new water the Trichlor and Dichlor method will get you in a place (high CYA) where your pool is actually days away from going green because you might be targeting a certain static FC level that is no longer high enough to prevent an outbreak due to rising CYA.

    I would suggest returning the stuff to Costco and buying the Clorox bleach they sell in three bottle packs at a very reasonable price. The Trichlor and Dichlor do have a very limited place/use in the methods used here. You could use the powder to slowly and carefully increase your CYA and you could use the tablets for short times when you might be away from the pool on vacation. But with the Costco bulk purchase you will have enough of both to last for several years of judicious occasional use.

    If you make this move, be prepared to test your water for FC level and add bleach as necessary on a daily basis, along with the other testing done on weekly basis once things are dialed in. It is a commitment, but its one that puts you in control of your pool and will save you time and money in the end.

    Good luck with the PH adjustments and keep coming back for anything else you may be interested in asking.
    Pool: IG 22k- 16x32 clipped corners- vinyl liner, w/ a great board. Built in 3/99, new to me 2/2011.
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Today's numbers:
    FC - 1.0
    CC - 1.0
    PH - 7.5 Yay!
    TA - 230 ( down a bit)
    CH - 400 - 450 (my water never gets past purple. It never gets blue)
    CYA - 40
    My water is beautiful to the eye.

    So, now I just start on the liquid bleach right? Daily is a little daunting, but only until it is a habit I suppose.
    I really appreciate all your help! I'm feeling less overwhelmed.
    Thank you all!
    10,000 gallon Pebbletech inground pool
    Hayward 700 4- cartridge filter. 3/4 HP Super II pump
    Phoenix, AZ.....Pool newbie 01/01/14

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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Remember, your FC range is 3-7, so don't ever, ever, ever let it get below 3.

    Ever.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
    The most important article on this site - The ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

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    TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Quote Originally Posted by wamster007 View Post
    Today's numbers:
    FC - 1.0
    CC - 1.0
    PH - 7.5 Yay!
    TA - 230 ( down a bit)
    CH - 400 - 450 (my water never gets past purple. It never gets blue)
    CYA - 40
    My water is beautiful to the eye.

    So, now I just start on the liquid bleach right? Daily is a little daunting, but only until it is a habit I suppose.
    I really appreciate all your help! I'm feeling less overwhelmed.
    Thank you all!
    Your showing a CC of 1. I would be inclined to bring the FC up to SLAM level to bring that down. 😎
    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: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Quote Originally Posted by wamster007 View Post
    Daily is a little daunting, but only until it is a habit I suppose.
    Yeah, you get into kind of a "start the coffee, do the chlorine" routine and you don't notice after a while.

    Just keep the chlorine away from the coffee.
    Cedar hot tub, 680 US gallons - Snorkel wood-burning heater, canoe paddle, "offline" Intex 1000 GPH pump/filter with skimmer

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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Agreed. My favorite time in the day is when we swim. My second favorite time of day is in the morning with my coffee out by the pool.

    Quote Originally Posted by bridgman View Post
    Just keep the chlorine out of the coffee.
    Ha! Yeah, and keep the coffee out of the pool!
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    Just to add on and second what Smykowski and pwrstrk noted...

    To move from FC = 1 to a target of 5 would take 60 ounces of the 8.25% Clorox from Costco. 75 ounces to go to target of 6.
    Normally as an example, you might be going from something like 3.5 raising back to 6 on a daily basis will require 38 ounces. You see that you will need close to a 3 pack box of regular bleach weekly. You will quickly find a target that works for your pool to prevent going below 3. Don't let that happen, ever.

    Since it has happened and likely happened a few times over the past few days, leading to a CC 1, I would strongly suggest reading up and following the SLAM process. Taking your pool up to a shock level of 16 and doing adequate testing it should only take you a day or two to determine if the pool passes the overnight loss test and verify that the CC is <=.5
    Pool: IG 22k- 16x32 clipped corners- vinyl liner, w/ a great board. Built in 3/99, new to me 2/2011.
    Equip: Hayward 3600 DE filter, Hayward CL-200 Chlorinator (empty since 7/5/2013).
    K-2006 Test kit with Speedstir
    Located in Cincinnati, OH. TFP lurker since 9/2011, BBB interested since 5/2012 and converted 7/2013.

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    Re: TA of 280! Newbie problems......

    On way to Costco right now. I will follow SLAM instructions and get-er-dun...
    You have all been very helpful. Thank you, thank you.
    Husband is going, "Let's get a pool, it'll be fun!" He is using a singsong type voice. I don't think he means those words. Ahahaha!
    10,000 gallon Pebbletech inground pool
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    Phoenix, AZ.....Pool newbie 01/01/14

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