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Thread: Newbie pool questions

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    Newbie pool questions

    Hi all,

    I just setup my 12' metal frame Intex pool last weekend. It's been great so far but I have a few questions.

    1. I added some cyanuric acid (HTH stabilizer) on the weekend but when I do tests now I still get a reading of 0. Now I'm only using HTH 6 way test strips as I haven't found where to buy more accurate tests in Canada. Could the test strips be wrong? Or do you think I need to wait longer before the CYA shows up in the test?

    2. At the moment I have to add chlorine every day. I bring it up to 3ppm each evening (as per my poor test strips). In the morning I did a test and it's still 3ppm. But by the evening it's dropped to 0ppm. Is this normal? Maybe it won't drop so quickly with CYA?

    3. I will be away for 1 week in a few weeks. What do I need to do for the pool so it's not a mess on my return? I tried the trichlor pucks in a floater but it doesn't seem to dissolve at all or help my chlorine levels. I don't have a skimmer and I don't think there is anyway to feed the puck via the pump that came with my pool. If I shock the pool before I leave would that be sufficient to leave it for a week?

    4. Do you have to cover the pool before leaving it unattended for a week? Would a solar cover work?

    5. My local pool store sells 20L 13% liquid chlorine for $12.99. Would you agree that this is a reasonable price?

    Thanks.
    Last edited by crimsondr; 06-24-2014 at 08:00 AM. Reason: change subject.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Going on vacation. What to do?

    Welcome to TFP!

    The best thing is to raise to around shock level, cover the pool with an opaque cover, and turn off the equipment.
    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: Going on vacation. What to do?

    You wouldn't suggest I set the pump to run a few hours daily while gone?

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    Re: Going on vacation. What to do?

    Can someone confirm that for 5600L I would need to add 126ml of 13% bleach? These are numbers from PoolMath but I wanted someone to confirm in case I did something wrong.

    Thanks.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    From what to what FC level?
    That will only add 3ppm of FC.

    How much CYA did you add? What was your target? That determines the minimum you should ever let the FC drop to according to the FC/CYA Chart. Which also shows you the shock level you should raise to before you leave ... and then hope that the pool is still clear when you return.

    Although, given that the FC keeps dropping to zero, there is likely already stuff growing.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    From what to what FC level?
    That will only add 3ppm of FC.

    How much CYA did you add? What was your target? That determines the minimum you should ever let the FC drop to according to the FC/CYA Chart. Which also shows you the shock level you should raise to before you leave ... and then hope that the pool is still clear when you return.

    Although, given that the FC keeps dropping to zero, there is likely already stuff growing.
    Why do you say that? She reported that FC is 3 at night and 3 in the morning. Sounds like she is just losing chlorine due to sunlight burn off and needs to raise CYA.
    37,000 gal IG concrete free-form, Hayward TriStar VS pump, Sta-Rite System 3 cartridge filter, Polaris w/ booster pump, CircuPool RJ60g SWG, Hayward OnCommand w/ remote

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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    It hasn't dropped to 0 yet. I forgot to say my target was to raise FC 3ppm. So my calculation is correct. Thanks.

    Edit, I guess I did say that it reaches 0 by the end of day when in use. And it does.

    12' Intex Metal Frame Pool, 1500 gallons, Intex 2800gph Sand filter/pump, AquaPro PRO1100 HP, K-2006 Test Kit

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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    Quote Originally Posted by mattttt25 View Post
    Why do you say that? She reported that FC is 3 at night and 3 in the morning. Sounds like she is just losing chlorine due to sunlight burn off and needs to raise CYA.
    I did add CYA last weekend and today is the first day I registered anything on my test. The reading was 30-50ppm.

    12' Intex Metal Frame Pool, 1500 gallons, Intex 2800gph Sand filter/pump, AquaPro PRO1100 HP, K-2006 Test Kit

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    Well, you admittedly use test strips ... so I am not sure how you can tell if you lost any FC overnight or not.

    Again, how much CYA did you add?

    - - - Updated - - -

    No, don't tell me what the strips say. Tell me how much of what product you added. I trust PoolMath at calculating the CYA level more than what the strips say ... and 30-50ppm is a HUGE range.

    - - - Updated - - -

    If you are letting the FC drop to 0, then you are not adding enough FC. The CYA should help and that is what we need to know to determine what your minimum FC level is.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    Hi crimsondr.

    Welcome to TFP!

    You have found the best source of information on the web for pool as well as the best experts!

    To answer your questions:

    1. CYA can take up to a week to show on tests. As you point out, test strips aren't really accurate. You could take some water to the pool store, but that's not really accurate either. Your best bet is to order a TFTestkit or a K-2006 from Apollo Pools. The first one can'T ship to Canada, but you can get it shipped to the border and go pick it up. The second one charges an OUTRAGEOUS price for their kit, but has the monopoly, so they can do what they want.

    2. If your CYA is 0 (which is most likely is), then the sun will burn off your chlorine pretty fast. Once you have some CYA in there and register a good number, use the FC/CYA chart to figure out which FC target to hit.

    3. A couple floating pucks should help, but you need to start with a known level for the pucks to 'maintain' that level as they dissolve slowly as you've found out. I agree with the comments above to bring up the FC to shock level, cover it, and shut the equipment off... Maybe run the pump a couple hours a day. But if your FC is at shock level and you have no CYA, it won't stay at shock level for long... If you have a neighbour who can come by and add some bleach mid-week, I'm sure that would help...

    4. Anything opaque is good as the sun won't penetrate it. A typical blue solar cover lets some sun through, but if that's all you have, it's better than nothing.

    5. Canadian Tire has 5L 10.8% on sale this week for 3.99$, so I'd say your deal is better... Stock up unless it's always at that price.

    Good luck!
    JF

    13.5k gallons, IG, Vinyl, Hayward C3030 Cartridge, Hayward Tristar 3/4hp single speed, Hayward T-15 SWG, Hayward P4 automation, 234 sqft Solex Solar panels. April 2013 construction, Dolphin DX4 robot, TF-100 test kit, Pentair Deck Jets 2.

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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    Well, you admittedly use test strips ... so I am not sure how you can tell if you lost any FC overnight or not.

    Again, how much CYA did you add?

    - - - Updated - - -

    No, don't tell me what the strips say. Tell me how much of what product you added. I trust PoolMath at calculating the CYA level more than what the strips say ... and 30-50ppm is a HUGE range.

    - - - Updated - - -

    If you are letting the FC drop to 0, then you are not adding enough FC. The CYA should help and that is what we need to know to determine what your minimum FC level is.
    The better test kits are quite expensive and I haven't convinced myself to purchase from appollo yet.

    For the CYA, I did use pool math and added approximately 6oz hoping to bring it up to 30ppm.


    12' Intex Metal Frame Pool, 1500 gallons, Intex 2800gph Sand filter/pump, AquaPro PRO1100 HP, K-2006 Test Kit

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    Well, if you added 6 oz, then assume your CYA is 30ppm. Which means you should never let the FC drop below 2ppm ... ever. And if you need to SLAM, you will have to maintain a FC of 12ppm.

    Realize if you continue to use the tablets, they are also adding CYA and thus raising the required FC levels.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Time for a road trip to Buffalo ... know anyone there you can have the TF-100 shipped to?
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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  13. Back To Top    #13

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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    The test kit itself costs as much as my pool!

    I already stopped using the tablets and returned the bottle to walmart (with one tab gone lol). Now I have 10L liquid chlorine that I will be using.

    Last night when I did my reading before adding chlorine it came in at 1ppm. But it was a cloudy day and we didn't use the pool. So I'm not sure if it's due to the conditions or the CYA is starting to work.

  14. Back To Top    #14
    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    You can not let the FC drop that low. The CYA should protect the FC and make it not be lost to the sun. Since your minimum is 2ppm. You should raise the FC to 5ppm in the evening and verify the next evening that it is still above 2ppm.

    Although none of what I am suggesting is even remotely possible with test strips.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    Would the HTH 3 way drop kit be any better? Or is it the taylor kit or nothing?

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    If you are going to go cheap ... then at least get the HTH 6way drop kit so you can test the CYA. But honestly differentiating a FC from 2-5ppm is almost impossible with those color match tests. The FAS-DPD chlorine test is just so much better.

    Have you read the seasonal pool article in Pool School? Might be something to consider which would help you squeak by with a simple test kit: http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...emporary-pools
    You have already done the first part with getting your CYA in range, now just have to be sure to keep the pH and FC high enough.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    I've read that article yes. Kind of forgot a lot of the information since I've been reading so much it gets kind of lost in my head... Walmart here doesn't have the 6 way drop kit... Only 3. So that's what I got. In the end I will probably get the K-2006 test kit.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    You pool is small enough that the seasonal article should be what you follow. If it hits the fan, drain and start over.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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  19. Back To Top    #19

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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    Okay thanks. I guess I will maintain a higher FC and hope for the best.

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    Re: Newbie pool questions

    You can try e-bay for a test kit. They will usually ship to Canada.
    12000 Gallon IG Plaster built 2/15/2014. Jandy 340 sg ft 127 gpm filter, Jandy 1 HP stealth pump. Circupool RJ-45 SWG (overkill). TF-100 with Speed Stir.

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