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Thread: Topping off otherwise balanced pool with hard well water?

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    Question Topping off otherwise balanced pool with hard well water?

    I wasn't certain where to place this query.

    First, many thanks to troublefreepool.com and poolcalculator.com. The house we bought last year came with an in-ground pool. What I learned and applied from these sites removed the stress and saved many dollars last year and this year (so far).

    I had a serious algae problem when I opened the pool this year because I opened it much later than originally planned. I've beat that as prescribed here and the pool looks great. However, between the back-washes after vacuuming out the dead algae and the lack of rain, my pool level is rather low. It's still skimming effectively. However, our long range forecast doesn't show much rain for the next several weeks.

    Our water is hard well water.

    The pool is:
    - 36,000 gallons
    - vinyl liner
    - sand filter
    - trichlor feeder and I tweak the levels with liquid chlorine (12.5%)

    All levels are within TroubleFeePool range except:

    TA - 150
    TH - <50

    (CYA - 30; PH - 7.5; FC - 4; TC - 4)

    If I were to add 1,000 gallons of our well water (it's very hard water - we're in Dutchess County, NY - the foothills of the Appalachians), what's the best way to proceed?

    My initial thought is to take a sample of the well water to one the local pool stores (Leslie Pools) and have it tested for the metal levels. However, they will recommend a solution and I would appreciate some guidance on how to listen to them.

    Or should I just get the metal levels and post them here before deciding on how to proceed?

    Thanks!

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    Re: Topping off otherwise balanced pool with hard well water?

    Welcome to the forum.
    My initial thought is to take a sample of the well water to one the local pool stores (Leslie Pools) and have it tested for the metal levels. However, they will recommend a solution and I would appreciate some guidance on how to listen to them.
    Water "hardness" refers to mostly Calcium. Are you saying you have iron in your well water, too?

    How do you know that? Have you tested it? Your result of "TH" is most always from a test strip and we find them completely unreliable

    Cross-checking Leslie's advice will seldom work for you. You will be in the middle and not be able to decide what to do.

    At some point, I think you will have to take the pool store out of the equation and begin to do your own testing and understanding the results. That will help you manage you pool water even though you seem to have some special circumstances.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Topping off otherwise balanced pool with hard well water?

    Dave,

    Thanks for your response.

    You're right. I was confusing hardness with the possibility of metals in the well water - i.e., iron.

    I'll figure out how to test for iron in our well water and proceed from there.

    Thanks for pulling me back from the edge.

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    Re: Topping off otherwise balanced pool with hard well water?

    Quote Originally Posted by agchambers View Post
    I wasn't certain where to place this query.

    First, many thanks to troublefreepool.com and poolcalculator.com. The house we bought last year came with an in-ground pool. What I learned and applied from these sites removed the stress and saved many dollars last year and this year (so far).

    I had a serious algae problem when I opened the pool this year because I opened it much later than originally planned. I've beat that as prescribed here and the pool looks great. However, between the back-washes after vacuuming out the dead algae and the lack of rain, my pool level is rather low. It's still skimming effectively. However, our long range forecast doesn't show much rain for the next several weeks.

    Our water is hard well water.

    The pool is:
    - 36,000 gallons
    - vinyl liner
    - sand filter
    - trichlor feeder and I tweak the levels with liquid chlorine (12.5%)

    All levels are within TroubleFeePool range except:

    TA - 150
    TH - <50

    (CYA - 30; PH - 7.5; FC - 4; TC - 4)

    If I were to add 1,000 gallons of our well water (it's very hard water - we're in Dutchess County, NY - the foothills of the Appalachians), what's the best way to proceed?

    My initial thought is to take a sample of the well water to one the local pool stores (Leslie Pools) and have it tested for the metal levels. However, they will recommend a solution and I would appreciate some guidance on how to listen to them.

    Or should I just get the metal levels and post them here before deciding on how to proceed?

    Thanks!
    We use well water all the time to fill our pool. Could you not use a sequestering agent? That's what we do. ALL well water will have iron. As long as it is not rust colored, I would not worry with a vinyl liner. You may get some barely noticable darkened spots. The pool store will sell you lots of magic bottles of "remover" that will magically do nothing. Listen to the advice on here.
    21,100 IG Vinyl
    Hayward Pump
    Sand Filter
    TFPC
    Taylor K-2006 Kit

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    Re: Topping off otherwise balanced pool with hard well water?

    While many, many wells contain iron, some do in sufficient quantity to cause pool problems and others do not. Each pool must be addressed individually.

    My pool does not contain enough iron to be measurable with the Taylor K-1716 kit, but after nine years it is starting to present some iron stains that will probably require an Ascorbic Acid treatment (even with a vinyl liner) pretty soon.

    A sequestrant is most always effective, but the amount required ($$$) can be enough to be painful......and it never stops.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    San Dimas, CA (LA County)
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    Re: Topping off otherwise balanced pool with hard well water?

    I think you'd know if you had an Iron problem with staining inside the toilet tank or where a faucet drips or whatever, unless you have a water softener. Plus the water tastes sharp and bitter. If you see no evidence, fill 'er up.
    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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