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Thread: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

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    Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    I am new to this forum (I started an intro thread already) and I have a 20,000 gallon in-ground vinyl lined 16'x32' pool.

    FC - 11.5ppm
    CC - <0.1ppm
    PH - 7.5
    TA - 180ppm
    TA - ~117ppm (adjusted for the high CYA per Taylor instructions)
    CH - 260ppm
    CYA - ~120-150ppm (I have a Taylor K-2006 test kit and used the method described in the pool school to test for high CYA)

    Water temp is 83 degrees Fahrenheit and gets direct sun.

    I don't have an algae problem at all that I can tell. My OCLT showed only a 1.0ppm loss of FC

    I do not have a phosphate test kit and I understand from reading things here I don't really need to worry about it. My water is cloudy, I can see the pattern of the liner on the shallow end and can just barely make out the liner seams on the deep end. My pool store tells me my phosphates are high and that is why my water is cloudy. They want me to use a flocculant that will reduce the phosphates as well as take all the suspended things that are making my water cloudy to the bottom and then vacuum it out to waste.

    Is that step necessary since I am going to drain a good portion of my water and refill so I can lower my CYA to a normal range of 30-50ppm? Will doing this and SLAMing the pool clear up the cloudiness? I am not used to cloudy water at all. My water is normally crystal clear.

    I had always used trichlor tablets in an inline chlorinator and in all the years I have had my pool I never had CYA this high. Any ideas as why just now my CYA is off the charts? I also never tested my own water, I always relied on the pool store since it is just up the road from my house. I have stopped the tabs and am only using bleach. Once I get the CYA in proper range as well as all my other levels should I just stay away from the tabs and stick with bleach? How much bleach will I need on a regular maintenance basis? Will I be needing to test daily with my FAS-DPD test or can I use something a little less expensive to do daily testing and only use that for detailed testing?

    That is all for now and look forward to feedback.


    Thanks in advance!
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    Hi, welcome to TFP! Tablets combined with trichlor/dichlor shock cause CYA to build up over time. If you replaced enough water through backwashing it may have been enough water replacement to keep CYA levels in check. Don't worry about the phosphates, they don't matter in a properly chlorinated pool. Do a series of drain/refill cycles to get your CYA in the 30-50ppm range. Do not drain all the water at once, you need to keep at least a foot of water in the shallow end to prevent the liner from shifting. If you have a high water table you may be only able to drain a foot or so at a time to prevent floating the liner. Once you have the CYA in range you need to perform the SLAM process. You can use bleach to maintain your daily FC target level once the slam is completed.

    The first month after the slam is completed test the FC daily and the pH weekly. Keep a log of test results. Once you have an idea how your pool reacts to normal conditions you will be able to determine how often to add bleach and how often to test the water. You can use the OTO test daily to check for FC if you want, but do a FAS test at least once a week.
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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    Thanks so much for the response. I am going to start the drain/refill cycles today. Doing this and SLAMing once in range should take care of the cloudy water issue?
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    Quote Originally Posted by Erack View Post
    Thanks so much for the response. I am going to start the drain/refill cycles today. Doing this and SLAMing once in range should take care of the cloudy water issue?
    Yes, once the SLAM process is completed.
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    Thanks so much. I will update as I complete the drain/refill process. Gotta get the high CYA gone.
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    You're fortunate your cya is "only" 150 maybe. When I finally took control and did my own testing, my cya was 350. Leslie's had been telling me it was 40 for months!
    Pool size: 24000gal inground Vinyl-Taylor k-2006 and k-1766 test kits and-speed stir
    Intermatic P1353ME digital timer w/freeze sensor
    CircuPool Si-45 SWCG System
    Polaris 280 vacuum/Polaris PB4-60 boost pump
    Pentair IntelliFlo VS 3hp Pump--Pentair sand filter

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    I apparently wasn't doing a good job with interpreting my CYA level and it had to have been MUCH higher than I had thought. I drained and refilled approximately 5800 gallons of water. I am getting a CYA reading of 140ppm. I did several readings as suggested per the directions here http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...Kit-Directions to make sure I was getting an accurate reading.

    I am now draining again. This is killing me as it is swim season.

    On a positive note, I have no doubt I will have a crystal clear, easy to maintain pool in the very near future.
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    Quote Originally Posted by Erack View Post
    I apparently wasn't doing a good job with interpreting my CYA level and it had to have been MUCH higher than I had thought. I drained and refilled approximately 5800 gallons of water. I am getting a CYA reading of 140ppm. I did several readings as suggested per the directions here http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...Kit-Directions to make sure I was getting an accurate reading.

    I am now draining again. This is killing me as it is swim season.

    On a positive note, I have no doubt I will have a crystal clear, easy to maintain pool in the very near future.
    If in fact you drained 5800 gals that would have been 29% and if in fact your cya is now 140. That means your cya had been at least 200 ppm. That would have required two dilutions of your sample and then multiplying the result by 4 to get a reasonably close estimate of what your cya really was. I have a feeling you didn't do that. Please correct me if I'm wrong. My sample had to be diluted 3 times to get my to get my reading of over 350.
    Pool size: 24000gal inground Vinyl-Taylor k-2006 and k-1766 test kits and-speed stir
    Intermatic P1353ME digital timer w/freeze sensor
    CircuPool Si-45 SWCG System
    Polaris 280 vacuum/Polaris PB4-60 boost pump
    Pentair IntelliFlo VS 3hp Pump--Pentair sand filter

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    I did drain that much and you are correct about my sample yesterday. Fingers crossed that my reading today is close to accurate.

    I suspect I will have to do one more drain/refill cycle after the one I do today but I hope not.
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    Sorry to have to tell you that it will be more than 1 more at 5800 gals! 140x 71% =99 x71%=70.7x71%=50. Finally close!! That's 3 I believe. I did 5 x 8000 gal.
    Pool size: 24000gal inground Vinyl-Taylor k-2006 and k-1766 test kits and-speed stir
    Intermatic P1353ME digital timer w/freeze sensor
    CircuPool Si-45 SWCG System
    Polaris 280 vacuum/Polaris PB4-60 boost pump
    Pentair IntelliFlo VS 3hp Pump--Pentair sand filter

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    Drained and refilled 7800 gallons yesterday. CYA this morning is ~90ppm. Gonna drain and refill another 7800 gallons. Have I said how much I despise the pool store's water testing and their lack of educating me on how if your CYA is high the chlorine is not effective? LOL
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    So glad I found this site. It has been an eye opener and a wealth of information. It also pointed me to TFTestkits.net which I have already taken advantage of since the CYA test takes so much reagent. I ordered an 8oz refill bottle that should get here today!
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    That'll get you down to 55 You're making progress! Math is just a little off tho--7800 gals should have gotten you down to about 85 if it was 140. Dilution tests aren't perfect tho, so close enough!
    Pool size: 24000gal inground Vinyl-Taylor k-2006 and k-1766 test kits and-speed stir
    Intermatic P1353ME digital timer w/freeze sensor
    CircuPool Si-45 SWCG System
    Polaris 280 vacuum/Polaris PB4-60 boost pump
    Pentair IntelliFlo VS 3hp Pump--Pentair sand filter

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    Things are looking great! CYA around 45~47. I would like it a little lower but I am not gonna drain again for now. Maybe later on down the road I will. Thanks for all your help!
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    SLAMing question

    Merged threads. Please keep all information in this thread until the pool is in maintenance mode. Thanks, Butterfly


    So I had VERY high CYA and have gone through the drain/refill cycles and brought it down to ~45-47ppm and my water is now clear again. I did want to SLAM my water as I know it had been so messed up. I started the process yesterday at 7PM. I looked at the Chlorine/CYA Chart and chose to go with the 20ppm as my SLAM level. I maintained this level until I went to bed at 11PM. This morning at 6:30AM my FC had dropped to 17ppm with a CC of <0.5ppm. I raised the FC back up to 20.5ppm. Now 3.5 hours later and FULL DIRECT SUN here in central NC my FC has dropped to 15ppm and CC is 0. Do I keep using up chlorine to keep the FC up at 20ppm throughout the day or can I wait till the sun goes away to bring it back up? My water is crystal clear.
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Re: SLAMing question

    Quote Originally Posted by Erack View Post
    So I had VERY high CYA and have gone through the drain/refill cycles and brought it down to ~45-47ppm and my water is now clear again. I did want to SLAM my water as I know it had been so messed up. I started the process yesterday at 7PM. I looked at the Chlorine/CYA Chart and chose to go with the 20ppm as my SLAM level. I maintained this level until I went to bed at 11PM. This morning at 6:30AM my FC had dropped to 17ppm with a CC of <0.5ppm. I raised the FC back up to 20.5ppm. Now 3.5 hours later and FULL DIRECT SUN here in central NC my FC has dropped to 15ppm and CC is 0. Do I keep using up chlorine to keep the FC up at 20ppm throughout the day or can I wait till the sun goes away to bring it back up? My water is crystal clear.
    SL AND MAINTAIN .... so keep it at or above slam level at all times!
    21,000 gallon inground
    Haywood Sand Filter
    Vinyl Liner

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    Re: SLAMing question

    Thanks man! I just know the SUN is going to be eating up the CL all day but I will do it
    18360 gallon; Vinyl IG; Pentair SuperFlo High Performance Pump w/3HP ecotech EZ variable speed motor; Hayward S-200 sand filter; Dolphin Supreme M4 cleaning robot; Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Re: SLAMing question

    Quote Originally Posted by Erack View Post
    Thanks man! I just know the SUN is going to be eating up the CL all day but I will do it
    The sun will do that for as long as it shines! ...... it's the other stuff we need to get rid of.
    21,000 gallon inground
    Haywood Sand Filter
    Vinyl Liner

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    Re: Cloudy water, high CYA, high phosphates

    You might want to consider getting your cya down to 30 so you won't need as much bleach for the SLAM process
    Pool size: 24000gal inground Vinyl-Taylor k-2006 and k-1766 test kits and-speed stir
    Intermatic P1353ME digital timer w/freeze sensor
    CircuPool Si-45 SWCG System
    Polaris 280 vacuum/Polaris PB4-60 boost pump
    Pentair IntelliFlo VS 3hp Pump--Pentair sand filter

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    Re: SLAMing question

    I didn't catch this new thread until after I had posted in your old one to consider getting your cya down to 30 to save bleach during the SLAM process. That's a reason they suggest to keep all your posts under one thread.
    Pool size: 24000gal inground Vinyl-Taylor k-2006 and k-1766 test kits and-speed stir
    Intermatic P1353ME digital timer w/freeze sensor
    CircuPool Si-45 SWCG System
    Polaris 280 vacuum/Polaris PB4-60 boost pump
    Pentair IntelliFlo VS 3hp Pump--Pentair sand filter

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