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Thread: Continuing issue with PH rise

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    Unhappy Continuing issue with PH rise

    Hi, I've been having an issue with PH rise since my pool was new. I have to add nearly a gallon of acid per week just to keep things in check. After reading about borate last summer I decided to try it and see if it would help (it has not). What really baffles me is the rise I get when to pool is closed for the winter! While closing the pool last November I lowered the PH to 7.2. Everything else was fine. FC 2.0, TA 90, CH 300, CYA 80, salt 3,600 , borate 50.

    I opened the pool Saturday and the PH was off the scale. Using an acid demand test I estimate it was around 8.6-8.8. Borate was good, TA was 100 and salt was 3,500. Since I have a solid cover I only drop the water level about 8" and I re-filled by directing my cover pump hose into the pool during our recent monsoons.

    What the heck is going on? I understand how the SWG will cause PH to rise while running but every winter I have this same issue and the resultant scale. I'm about to ditch the SWG but don't think it will make much difference. HELP!!
    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    You should let the TA go down to around 60. High TA plus aeration results in PH increases.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Thanks,
    Should I then just let the PH rise on it's own or should I aerate to get it back up?
    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    That depends on how much of a hurry you are in. Extra aeration will speed up the process, but the existing aeration from the SWG is sufficient to get there eventually.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Why do you think it's creeping up so hi over the winter? I added 4 gallons of acid and the PH is still over 8.2.
    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Something is not right here, but I can't tell what. That much acid should have made a very dramatic difference in your PH reading. Now might be a good moment to make sure your PH test reagent is still good and nothing is interfering with the PH test.

    The PH test can be completely wrong when FC is above 15, which doesn't seem to be an issue here. The PH reagent can also go bad. If it is over two years old, froze, or was left in sunlight for a day or more, or somewhere above 100 for a week or more, it could have gone bad.

    If you have anything else that measures PH, or perhaps a pool store water test, now would be a good time to try it as a double check.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    I'll pickup some new reagent and have the local Leslies test the water while I'm at it. I'll let you know what I find.

    Thanks,
    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Well, I had Leslie test and they came up with 7.8 PH, 120 TA, 2500 salt (said they could not test borax). AS tested same day and got 8.6 PH, 60 TA, 3500 salt and 0.0 borax. The AS numbers seem closer but the borax scares me (I know it's @ 40-50) and they we telling me my salt was too high (Zodiac recommends 4000), wanted me to shock the pool and were trying to sell me PhosFree even after telling them I used cellulose DE substitute and have never had an algae problem.

    So, should I buy new reagent for my PoolMaster 5 way kit or toss it and buy a new one? I've never really concerned myself with anything other than TA and PH since everything else is pretty stable.
    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    I have a similar problem; no matter what I do, I keep adding acid at about a gallon a month (or more) - I keep getting high PH creep. I keep the TA around 90-120, and try to maintain PH @ 7.2. I tend to manage the CL at 3PPM cause I don't like to have too high -- and I don't seem to have algae problems. It Seems whenever i add more water to the pool the PH seems to get higher. I've been told by Leslies' that my water is "old" and I should half drain the pool cause i have too much NDS (non-disolved solids) -- I don't really know if this is really true. I've heard of other pool guys talking about "old water", but with the drought here I just can't see myself draining the pool. I've recently found another source of muratic acid that has a higher percentage so i dont' have to add as much, but still wondering what's causing the PH rise.

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    I have to add a gallon plus per week. I would run as fast as I could from Leslie. They try to sell you things you don't need (phosphate reducers being one of the more expensive), give you incorrect advice ("TDS is high you need to drain your pool) and their testing is WRONG!

    Read the post on salt water generators. That is what is raising your PH. The only problem I cannot understand is why my PH shoots up over the winter when the SWG is not running.

    I've ordered a new test kit (TF-100) so I can do all of my own testing. With my old kit I could not test CH or CYA so I would go to one of the local pool stores for that and their other results (always much different than mine) were driving me nuts. No more of that...
    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    My pool uses a gallon of MA per week.

    You need to get that TA down to 60. It's going to take more time to do with the borates in there.
    Built in 1957 44,000 gallon in-ground, Wet Edge Primera Stone in Sky Blue, Intelliflo VF Pump, 600 lb. Pentair Triton II TR-100 Sand Filter, CircuPool RG 60 Plus SWG, TF-100 test kit
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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Quote Originally Posted by edavis6678 View Post
    I have a similar problem; no matter what I do, I keep adding acid at about a gallon a month (or more) - I keep getting high PH creep. I keep the TA around 90-120, and try to maintain PH @ 7.2. I tend to manage the CL at 3PPM cause I don't like to have too high -- and I don't seem to have algae problems. It Seems whenever i add more water to the pool the PH seems to get higher. I've been told by Leslies' that my water is "old" and I should half drain the pool cause i have too much NDS (non-disolved solids) -- I don't really know if this is really true. I've heard of other pool guys talking about "old water", but with the drought here I just can't see myself draining the pool. I've recently found another source of muratic acid that has a higher percentage so i dont' have to add as much, but still wondering what's causing the PH rise.
    It's the fill water. Test a sample straight out of the hose. High TA will push pH up. Every time you add water, you add TA and pH climbs.
    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: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Hi, I received my shiny new TF-100 last night and performed my first tests. The PH and TA are pretty close to what my old kit was telling me but I'm a bit shocked at my CH. I tested again this morning to make sure I hadn't contaminated my results with cervesa last night.

    PH 7.5
    FC 11
    CC 0
    TC 11
    CH ~550
    TA 60
    CYA ~20
    Borates ~50
    Salt 4200

    The chlorine is high because I was running the pump for the heatpump yesterday but the CH really surprises me. The evil pool stores had me in the 200-300 range.

    Any thoughts? Other than PH rise I don't really have issues. CH may have risen as I've lowered TA? I'll test my fill water later but am sure it's acidic but dont think I have a hardness issue.

    Onto the honey do list, which does not include playing with the pool...
    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    As a follow up I tested my fill water. The PH is below 6.0 (can't test any lower) and the TA is below 10. When I test the TA at the point that I'm adding the 5 drops of R-0008 the solution turns pink as soon as mixed. I added 1 drop of R-0009 to turn it from pink to red. I performed both tests twice to be sure it was not me

    Bill


    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    With that water, you shouldn't see pH rise.

    Above 10 FC, the pH test reagent gets weird and tends to read higher than actual. Could that be what you're seeing?
    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: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320 View Post
    It's the fill water. Test a sample straight out of the hose. High TA will push pH up. Every time you add water, you add TA and pH climbs.
    So I checked the water right out of the tap; you are correct -- looks like that's where my need for Acid is coming from...

    TA = 130
    PH = 8.0
    CL = 1ppm

    Is that right, water out of the tap has that much chlorine, or was the test just off cause it was so little?

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Quote Originally Posted by edavis6678 View Post
    So I checked the water right out of the tap; you are correct -- looks like that's where my need for Acid is coming from...

    TA = 130
    PH = 8.0
    CL = 1ppm

    Is that right, water out of the tap has that much chlorine, or was the test just off cause it was so little?
    That's right. Check your CH, too. You'll be amazed.
    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: Continuing issue with PH rise

    My FC is usually closer to 3 so don't think that's the issue. Should I do anything about the CH and CYA or just leave it alone?


    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Hi, I've had my TF-100 for about a week now and am puzzled by the CH readings I'm getting. I keep getting readings of between 450-550. Two different pool stores are consistently showing 240-260. One of the stores is completely computerized (A&S) which would normally comfort me but they also tell me my borate is 0 and I know it's around 50 ppm. I've tested the CH 5-6 times with the same results. An item of note, the solution never really turns red. It's more of a pink/violet but does turn distinctively blue. Any thought?

    BTW, bringing TA down seems to have stabilized the PH

    The remaining results are:

    FC 10
    CC 0
    TC 10
    CH 450
    TA 60
    CYA 35 (JUST ADDED 4 LBS A FEW DAYS AGO)
    PH 7.5
    10 year old 23,500 gal 20X40 in-ground cement pond. 72 sq ft DE filter, Zodiac Clearwater SWG, Nature 2, RayVac and heatpump. Hayworth 3/4 SuperpumpTwo skimmers, dual returns and love-seat jets.

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    Re: Continuing issue with PH rise

    Quote Originally Posted by wkillham View Post
    Hi, I've had my TF-100 for about a week now and am puzzled by the CH readings I'm getting. I keep getting readings of between 450-550. Two different pool stores are consistently showing 240-260. One of the stores is completely computerized (A&S) which would normally comfort me but they also tell me my borate is 0 and I know it's around 50 ppm. I've tested the CH 5-6 times with the same results. An item of note, the solution never really turns red. It's more of a pink/violet but does turn distinctively blue. Any thought?

    BTW, bringing TA down seems to have stabilized the PH

    The remaining results are:

    FC 10
    CC 0
    TC 10
    CH 450
    TA 60
    CYA 35 (JUST ADDED 4 LBS A FEW DAYS AGO)
    PH 7.5
    Is your area known for "hard" water? FWIW, my area is, and that CH is on par with our fill water. I've never seen red on the CH test. I don't think a true "red" is expected. I have a strong distrust for electronic lab equipment when I don't know/trust the operator. I have no clue about water testing devices used in pool stores, I suspect they need regular calibration, I don't trust that this happens as frequently as it should.
    IG gunite/plaster pool/spa Started 1/17/14, Plastered 5/16/14
    Size: 12'-21'x39' free form, depth ranging from 4' to 7, attached 6 person spa with spillover.
    Equipment: Whisperflo 2hp pump, Pentair 30" sand filter, Pentair Mastertemp 400k BTU heater, 1hp Whisperflo for waterfalls, and a blower for spa floor

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