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Thread: Testing questions

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
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    Testing questions

    Hi, we just had a fiberglass pool installed. I found this board and started reading it because our water was fluctuating wildly according to test strips and pool stores (this was in March and April--I learn!) I now have a Taylor K2005 test kit, a FAS/DPD test kit, and LaMotte borate test strips (testing is SO cool!).

    temp 78
    FC 7
    CC 0
    pH 7.6
    TA 110
    CH 250
    CYA ~33
    Salt 3400
    Borates 9

    CSI & LSI both balanced.

    I want to add borax but my husband wants me to wait since things seem to be pretty good right now.

    Some questions:

    1. Our FC has been running pretty steady at about 3, but weíve upped it a bit because weíre have a celebration of the pool on Sunday. About 20 people, 4 of them children. Two of the kids are still in diapers. Reading on the boards it seems that with a heavy bather load you should increase the FC. Is 7 OK?

    2. Our CYA is low for the recs on SWG pools, but we have a bunch of TriChlor for use in the winter when the SWG wonít run (we donít close for the winter). Iím afraid to add more stabilizer and end up to high. Will a level of 33 be a problem?

    3. We seem to have trouble holding our pH. Iím hoping when we add the borax that will help, but I just donít know if maybe itís that we donít have our TA right. Suggestions?

    Thanks, Eileen
    18K gal 15x35 IG fiberglass w/waterfall & 2 deck jets, Pentair Clean & Clear 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IntelliFlo VS-3050 pump, Pentair IntelliChlor IC20 SWG, Polaris 9450 Sport robot, Pentair Rainbow Automatic Chlorine Feeder (for winter), built 4/14, Taylor K-2005 + FAS/DPD

  2. Back To Top    #2
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Another newbie...

    1) 7 is fine.
    2) CYA at 33 will use up your cell lifetime a lot more quickly than higher CYA levels will. Low CYA also means your FC level is more volatile, and could more easily dip low unexpectedly.
    3) TA is too high. Lower TA (and raise CH a little).

    By the by, you don't want your CSI "balanced", you want it a little negative, if you pay attention to CSI at all, which you probably shouldn't.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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  3. Back To Top    #3
    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Another newbie...

    Gotta side with the husband. Don't go fooling with the chemistry just before the big party. That would be like trying a new hair style two days before your wedding!

    All you need right now is to lower the pH to 7.2 and then boost the FC up to 7. The splashers will raise the pH up again in no time.
    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: Another newbie...

    OK, hubby is so happy he's right! We'll wait on the borax.

    Our pH today is up to almost 8, everything else stable. We need to add a fair amount of MA to lower to 7.2 (61 oz), and we need to add a little water to the pool as well. How will that affect our numbers? Should we add the water first, test then correct? Or correct for what we know now, add water, test again and correct again? I know we'll get the hang of this, hopefully soon
    18K gal 15x35 IG fiberglass w/waterfall & 2 deck jets, Pentair Clean & Clear 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IntelliFlo VS-3050 pump, Pentair IntelliChlor IC20 SWG, Polaris 9450 Sport robot, Pentair Rainbow Automatic Chlorine Feeder (for winter), built 4/14, Taylor K-2005 + FAS/DPD

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Another newbie...

    Add the water first, let it mix for several hours, retest, adjust. Have a fun party!
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
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    Re: Another newbie...

    Thanks for the help! I'm so glad I found this site, y'all are great!
    18K gal 15x35 IG fiberglass w/waterfall & 2 deck jets, Pentair Clean & Clear 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IntelliFlo VS-3050 pump, Pentair IntelliChlor IC20 SWG, Polaris 9450 Sport robot, Pentair Rainbow Automatic Chlorine Feeder (for winter), built 4/14, Taylor K-2005 + FAS/DPD

  7. Back To Top    #7

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    Re: Another newbie...

    Hi, had a great party Sunday, tested the water Monday and adjusted for pH which was a bit high again then went out of town. Got back tonight and checked things.

    Temp 79
    FC 4
    CC .5 (first time it's above 0 since we started doing our own testing)
    pH 7.8
    TA 85
    CH 250
    CYA 33
    Borates 9

    I know we need to raise CYA and we plan to add borax. But what about the CC? And what should we do first? And how does it affect swimming? Since we were gone all week, we can't wait to get in the pool again
    18K gal 15x35 IG fiberglass w/waterfall & 2 deck jets, Pentair Clean & Clear 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IntelliFlo VS-3050 pump, Pentair IntelliChlor IC20 SWG, Polaris 9450 Sport robot, Pentair Rainbow Automatic Chlorine Feeder (for winter), built 4/14, Taylor K-2005 + FAS/DPD

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Another newbie...

    Don't add any borax that will raise your PH which is already at the top of the range. Use muriatic acid to lower it some. Use Pool Math for your doseing. Don't forget to put your TA level in pool math to figure out how much acid to use to target your PH level.
    Your CC of 0.5 is fine. It'll probably burn off.
    Lower PH first then your raise your CYA . 😎
    Jeff
    24'x54" AG Morada RTR (by wilbar) 13'500 gal. Hayward Powerflo Matrix 1hp 2 speed. Hayward Perflex EC65 DE filter.

  9. Back To Top    #9
    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Another newbie...

    How often do you run the waterfall and deck jets? If you run them frequently along with having a SWG they will both tend to raise your pH. Try lowering the TA to 70 and see how the pH reacts over the next week.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: Another newbie...

    We don't actually run the deck jets and waterfall that often, maybe a few hours a week. We ran them during the party on Sunday, but were gone all this week so the only thing running was our pump which is on a timer. Our TA is going down slowly since we're adding muriatic acid so often to lower pH. It was up at 120 a couple of weeks ago and is down to 85 before we added MA this morning to lower our pH.
    18K gal 15x35 IG fiberglass w/waterfall & 2 deck jets, Pentair Clean & Clear 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IntelliFlo VS-3050 pump, Pentair IntelliChlor IC20 SWG, Polaris 9450 Sport robot, Pentair Rainbow Automatic Chlorine Feeder (for winter), built 4/14, Taylor K-2005 + FAS/DPD

  11. Back To Top    #11

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    Re: Another newbie...

    I have a couple of questions. First, numbers:

    Temp 82
    FC 3 (down from 3.5 this am)
    CC 0
    pH 7.6 (up from 7.2 this am, added 35 oz borax to raise)
    TA 80
    CYA 60 (up from 33 this am, we added stablilizer today)

    Now the questions. Our FC seems to be fairly consistent at 3 to 3.5, evening to morning. I know from looking at the chlorine/CYA chart that 3 is the minimum FC with our CYA level, but target is 4. If we dial our SWG up one click, our FC level goes up to about 7, which is too high. We have the SWG on a timer with the settings from the winter, which were set to prevent freezing for the few times temps dropped that low--midnight to 7am and noon to 5pm, which adjust for DST 1am-8am & 1pm-6pm. Would running the SWG fewer hours/day dialed up one click increase our FC but now as high as 7? Is it better to run it during the day when the sun is shining, eating up FC or at night?

    Sorry for all the questions, but the although the pool was started in October, we only added chemicals in May (it was pristine and beautiful all winter!) so we're still trying to figure all this out!
    18K gal 15x35 IG fiberglass w/waterfall & 2 deck jets, Pentair Clean & Clear 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IntelliFlo VS-3050 pump, Pentair IntelliChlor IC20 SWG, Polaris 9450 Sport robot, Pentair Rainbow Automatic Chlorine Feeder (for winter), built 4/14, Taylor K-2005 + FAS/DPD

  12. Back To Top    #12

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    Re: Another newbie...

    I have a couple of questions. First, numbers:

    Temp 82
    FC 3 (down from 3.5 this am)
    CC 0
    pH 7.6 (up from 7.2 this am, added 35 oz borax to raise)
    TA 80
    CYA 60 (up from 33 this am, we added stablilizer today)

    Now the questions. Our FC seems to be fairly consistent at 3 to 3.5, evening to morning. I know from looking at the chlorine/CYA chart that 3 is the minimum FC with our CYA level, but target is 4. If we dial our SWG up one click, our FC level goes up to about 7, which is too high. We have the SWG on a timer with the settings from the winter, which were set to prevent freezing for the few times temps dropped that low--midnight to 7am and noon to 5pm, which adjust for DST 1am-8am & 1pm-6pm. Would running the SWG fewer hours/day dialed up one click increase our FC but now as high as 7? Is it better to run it during the day when the sun is shining, eating up FC or at night?

    Sorry for all the questions, but the although the pool was started in October, we only added chemicals in May (it was pristine and beautiful all winter!) so we're still trying to figure all this out!
    18K gal 15x35 IG fiberglass w/waterfall & 2 deck jets, Pentair Clean & Clear 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IntelliFlo VS-3050 pump, Pentair IntelliChlor IC20 SWG, Polaris 9450 Sport robot, Pentair Rainbow Automatic Chlorine Feeder (for winter), built 4/14, Taylor K-2005 + FAS/DPD

  13. Back To Top    #13

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    Re: Another newbie...

    Also, is it better to do water testing in the morning or evening? Or does it matter?

  14. Back To Top    #14
    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Another newbie...

    Setting the filter time and the SWG percentage is all done by trial and error.

    2 hours pump at 30% SWG generates the same chlorine as 1 hour pump at 60% SWG.

    So start by adjusting your pump run time like this article explains: http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...-pump-run-time

    Then, by testing daily, you turn the SWG up or down so that just before the pump kicks on in the afternoon, FC hasn't dipped below the minimum. Running higher than minimum won't hurt anything. The higher the FC, the more you lose to sunlight. If you can get some equilibrium at 5 or 6 or 7, you're still well below SLAM levels so it's just fine for swimming. It doesn't cost you but a few cents electricity; you're not buying bleach.
    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: Another newbie...

    OK, so I had a mini freak-out moment!

    After reading through lots of posts, I decided to measure my FC after the pump/SWG had been off (it runs during the night) and just before it came back on again for the afternoon, figuring that the FC would be at its lowest point since the sun had been shining on the pool all morning. My FC read 2.5, hence my mini freak-out since our minimum should be 3! My husband immediately turned on the pump and cranked up the SWG and I doubled checked the FC. This time it read 3.0. I used the FAS/DPD test.

    I assume we should just dial up our SWG 1 click? And double check tomorrow?

    Also, our pH seems to have finally settle at 7.8 which I know falls in the OK range but not in the preferred range of 7.4-7.6. When we add MA, it drops but rises right back up again. I'm guessing maybe our TA is still too high? Does this sound right?

    Temp 84
    FC 3.0 second time, 2.5 first time
    CC 0
    pH 7.8
    TA 80
    CYA 60

    Also, when is the best time to test, morning or evening?
    18K gal 15x35 IG fiberglass w/waterfall & 2 deck jets, Pentair Clean & Clear 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IntelliFlo VS-3050 pump, Pentair IntelliChlor IC20 SWG, Polaris 9450 Sport robot, Pentair Rainbow Automatic Chlorine Feeder (for winter), built 4/14, Taylor K-2005 + FAS/DPD

  16. Back To Top    #16

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    Re: Testing questions

    When is the best time of day to test? Today I did it at 12:55 pm, just before our pump & SWG came on because I want to check our FC level when I thought it would be at its lowest and after the sun had been shining on the pool all morning.

    FC 5.0
    CC 0
    pH 7.6
    TA ~ 75 (I have trouble telling if it actually changes between 70 & 80)
    temp 90

    earlier testing results (I don't test these daily, I shouldn't should I?)
    CYA 60
    CH 240

    We had some trouble early on with our pH fluctuating wildly, it seems to be more stable now. Rises slowly over the course of a week or so. When it get to 7.8, we add MA to lower it to 7.4. I assume at some point this will lower our TA enough that we will need to add baking soda to raise it slightly, correct?

    Thanks!
    18K gal 15x35 IG fiberglass w/waterfall & 2 deck jets, Pentair Clean & Clear 320 cartridge filter, Pentair IntelliFlo VS-3050 pump, Pentair IntelliChlor IC20 SWG, Polaris 9450 Sport robot, Pentair Rainbow Automatic Chlorine Feeder (for winter), built 4/14, Taylor K-2005 + FAS/DPD

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: Testing questions

    A lot of people like to test in the evening, but I think you are fine if you test at any time. You will soon see a pattern and with the test results and you will become comfortable with how the pool is reacting.

    I test TA, CH, and CYA monthly, pH weekly, and FC and CC daily as our pool is used for lessons. When it is not used for lessons I back the FC testing to twice a week as the SWG is stable for the most part.

    Just keep a watch on the pH and TA and time will tell if you need to add baking soda. I have never needed it so far and I don't think I ever will. Most likely the pH and TA will find a sweet spot and be fairly stable.
    16k gal plaster with raised spa, Jandy DEV60 filter, 2 HP 2-speed SHPF Jandy Stealth pump
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