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Thread: Would like some advice

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    Question Would like some advice

    Hi All

    I would love it if I could get some free advice from some of the pool experts and moderators. I just got my Taylor K-2006 test kit (Yay!!) and now I have solid numbers for my pool. Here they are -

    CYA 110 (measured ~55ppm using a 50% diluted pool water solution)
    FC 5.8
    CC 0.4
    pH 7.3
    TA 120
    CH 500 (seems a little suspect to me so I may check my fill water and re test...however, I do live in AZ so, ya know....)
    Salt 3200
    Sat Index -0.2 (from wheel decoder in kit)

    SO here' my plan of attack :

    1. Get my CYA to 50 using lots of drains/backwashes over the next few weeks. Pentair IC-40 manual says 50 as the max level but TFP has different recommended value so not sure which to use....
    2. Keep my pH down at 7.4 or lower and try to bump up FC to 7.0 with bleach all while keeping my salt levels in the sweet spot of 3500ppm (Pentair recommends 3400 for the IC40)
    3. After I get to a sweet spot established, go "ALL IN" on borates and get them up to 50ppm

    Am I missing anything? Can I just get my TA down through acid/aeration process?

    I think I'm not going to worry about my CH too much because I already have some Ca scaling on the tiles by the spa...I just feel likes it a losing battle down here in Tucson unless you do lots of water drains/refills. Maybe if I ever get a salt water softener hooked up to the house plumbing, I can control the fill water better but my local water reports always put it at 280ppm so there's no going lower than that.

    Thanks and let the free advice roll!!!


    PS - I can't believe how HORRIBLY INACCURATE the OTO Cl tests are!! I've been using my dinky little PoolMaster test kit since last year and not only is the Total Chlorine value way off, but there's no way to distinguish FC/CC....other than being a Yes/No test for Cl presence, it's a royal waste of money and time.

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    Re: Would like some advice

    IMHO I'd get the CYA down sooner than a couple weeks. Until you do the FC should be around 12 with 7 being the minimum you shouldn't let it get under. That's for CYA of 100. http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...art-slam-shock

    And yes you do want to get the CYA down before you dump in the borax
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    Re: Would like some advice

    If you have an SWG you may want to target a higher CYA level around 70 ppm, borates are optional so I would not be in a big rush to use them, but that is up to you. Otherwise looks good

    Ike
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    Re: Would like some advice

    Thanks for the advice. I will go as fast as I can.

    Every time I do a backwash I'm limited to about 8mins of flow (~800 Gal) or else the water line will go below my skimmer. As well, with a backwash, I have to add DE back to the filter so there's extra cost than just water. My other option is a low flow spigot (5 Gal/min through a standard garden hose) that sits on the output of the main pump before the filter/chlorinator/heater equipment. It's a lot slower but doesn't require much attention to run. The bigger issue is the discharge water. I discharge water to a small patch of land in the corner of my property. It can't handle much water before the water starts ripping everything up. So even if I wanted to blow off 8,500 gallons of water all at once, I'd wreck my property doing it.

    All in all, it's mostly time to drain half of a 17,000 Gal pool and with lots of little ones, I don't have much time to myself....but I will push the envelope as much as possible

    - - - Updated - - -

    ooops!

    Forgot to correct TA for CYA (next time I'll read the Taylor instructions a little more closely).

    So TA is really -

    TA = TA - correction factor = 120 - (0.3 * 110) = 87

    That's a bit more like it!! I've never had TA's higher than 100 so 120 was bothering me....

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    Re: Would like some advice

    Every pool is a little different and the landscape around it will often pose specific problems to that one pool. With a SWG you likely want to be in the 60-70 http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...art-slam-shock range so dropping 110 to 70 in your 17K pool would be about 35% or 6K gallons. It's a lot of water. If you don't have grass or plants to water where you could move a discharge hose around to spread it ,,, small discharges over time are the only option. It's just that if you dump 7/8 hundred gallons at a time and then refill you will need to dump more than eight times as each time you do discharge and then refill the water becomes more diluted and with each successive discharge you're discharging less CYA as the concentration is less each time.
    Those lower CYA recommendations (50) are for different pools like vinyl liner.

    Do you know what made the CYA get so high to begin with ?? You didn't mention it in the post and it's important so you don't end up in this position again. Are you using liquid bleach to chlorinate ??
    If you are using chlorine tablets, please stop.

    Different areas have different costs for water itself and I don't know what it costs you in your area. Just different factors to consider.

    How much DE do you need to add after a backwash ??
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    Re: Would like some advice

    We do not use the corrected TA. Use the test result in PoolMath directly
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    Re: Would like some advice

    My sister there in AZ says you are nearing the Monsoon season. If you have rain gutters on the roof, you can rig up a connection to capture that water and send it into the pool. Free water, yea! Search the site for some discussion and photos of how to filter trash out and make the connections. Rainwater will have NO CH and so will be the best thing for dilution of both CYA and CH.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

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    Wink Re: Would like some advice

    Kiss4afrog,

    Thanks for all the helpful advice. I agree that partial drains and fills will result in a dilution affect that makes the total amount greater as opposed to just flushing it all at once. But I am quite serious that I have very limited property space for the back wash water and, as well, the water flows from my property through a short stretch of my neighbors yard and then out of our association. He's already not happy that I backwash water into his property and so creating a 6,000 Gal torrent of water will get me in hot water with the HOA.

    As for why the CYA is high - rookie mistake! At the start of the high temp season, I did not adjust my SWG properly and one day I awoke to a pool with almost no measurable chlorine level and small patch of algae in one of the little pools in my waterfall. Not fully understanding the chemistry of those 3" tri-chlor pucks, I put the standard blue floatie in my pool with three pucks, cranked my SWG all the way up to 90% (I think I was at 30%) and kept on replacing them...so I basically dosed my water with too much CYA. Then I started having some minor water clarity issues and, after deciding to educate myself, I realized the stupid mistake I made. Now I'm paying for it with a painful but instructive lesson....

    As for DE usage, not much. My pool builders instructions were to use three big scoops with this orange measuring cup. I'd estimate it to be a bit larger than a 1 lb coffee can. My complaint about backwashing and DE is mostly laziness at having to mix the DE and pour it in the skimmer...not a big deal, but annoying. My small discharge spigot on top of the pump output is actually quite useful. My pool builder was going to remove it (it was used for pressure testing the PVC during the construction), but he said he'd leave it for me and to call him when it starts to leak and then he'll remove it. I like it as it allows me to very precisely take off water at a rate of 5 gal/min without affecting the system pressure at all. So I can run the pool while drawing off water.

    I'm very optimistic about getting down to a good CYA level, it will just take a while. My bather load is low right now and no one in the family is yelling at me about not being able to use the pool, so it's all good. I'll just keep on using the concentrated bleach to keep my FC levels up to the acceptable range and then get everything properly adjusted once the CYA is under control.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Yeah, the Taylor kit instructions mentioned that there is some dispute on whether or not to correct for the alkalinity of CYA. I guess this is not the right place to discuss it, but is there a discussion post that details any of this? I guess I'm on the side of using proper correction factors and being able to compare TA values accurately based on chemistry (some folks don't use CYA, so you can't really compare a CYA/non-CYA pool TA results...), but I'd love to read a wider discussion of the issue.

    Thanks!!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    We do not use the corrected TA. Use the test result in PoolMath directly
    Yeah, the Taylor kit instructions mentioned that there is some dispute on whether or not to correct for the alkalinity of CYA. I guess this is not the right place to discuss it, but is there a discussion post that details any of this? I guess I'm on the side of using proper correction factors and being able to compare TA values accurately based on chemistry (some folks don't use CYA, so you can't really compare a CYA/non-CYA pool TA results...), but I'd love to read a wider discussion of the issue.

    Thanks!!

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Would like some advice

    Do you have a main drain that works independently of the skimmer? I guess what I'm saying is can you shut down the skimmer and drain from the main drain only?

    I took my CYA from 200+ to my currently still high 80 through a couple of months of partial drains ( but below the skimmer using just the main drain) and being heavy with the backwashing.

    Can you adjust you landscaping and/or add a pipe to change the direction of the water so it doesn't flow to the neighbors yard?if not, every time it rains run out and start pumping water out of the pool so your water mixes and is "hidden" by the rain. Let the HOA prove the water was yours while it's raining.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: Would like some advice

    Quote Originally Posted by anonapersona View Post
    My sister there in AZ says you are nearing the Monsoon season. If you have rain gutters on the roof, you can rig up a connection to capture that water and send it into the pool. Free water, yea! Search the site for some discussion and photos of how to filter trash out and make the connections. Rainwater will have NO CH and so will be the best thing for dilution of both CYA and CH.
    anonapersona,

    That is an interesting idea and I will look into it. I did just recently cut out all of my scuppers (I HATE those things!!!) and had good solid gutters installed. I've always been interested in rain water collection and you're right that it would be a great way to fill a pool (assuming you can keep the rain water clean). I guess my only concern with roof runoff water is the chemistry of the water AFTER it runs down your roof. Yes, rainwater is clean, but roof runoff is not. Before putting any of that into a pool, I'd want it thoroughly tested to see what's in it. AT the very least, it's going to pick up some VOCs from the paint that's used on the roof as well as lots of dust and fine particulates...not necessarily stuff I want my kids swimming in.

    THANKS!!

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    Re: Would like some advice

    Quote Originally Posted by SunnyOptimism View Post
    anonapersona,

    That is an interesting idea and I will look into it. I did just recently cut out all of my scuppers (I HATE those things!!!) and had good solid gutters installed. I've always been interested in rain water collection and you're right that it would be a great way to fill a pool (assuming you can keep the rain water clean). I guess my only concern with roof runoff water is the chemistry of the water AFTER it runs down your roof. Yes, rainwater is clean, but roof runoff is not. Before putting any of that into a pool, I'd want it thoroughly tested to see what's in it. AT the very least, it's going to pick up some VOCs from the paint that's used on the roof as well as lots of dust and fine particulates...not necessarily stuff I want my kids swimming in.

    THANKS!!
    i can't imagine unless the roof was just painted that VOCs will be an issue.

    Most who are harvesting rain water run the captured water through a stocking or skimmer sock to catch the junk from the roof.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: Would like some advice

    "As for why the CYA is high - rookie mistake!"

    Don't feel alone, I have tablets, flock, pH this and pH that and a gallon of "Winterize" and I have no clue what is in that or how long ago it was purchased. Just another example of leaving the pool store with a bunch of stuff and having little clue what I was sold. I'm a recent pool store convert myself
    '70s IG Vinyl 32K gal, Lazy L, Hayward SuperPump 1.5hp 120V, S240 Sand Filter W/DE
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    Re: Would like some advice

    Quote Originally Posted by tim5055 View Post
    Do you have a main drain that works independently of the skimmer? I guess what I'm saying is can you shut down the skimmer and drain from the main drain only?

    I took my CYA from 200+ to my currently still high 80 through a couple of months of partial drains ( but below the skimmer using just the main drain) and being heavy with the backwashing.

    Can you adjust you landscaping and/or add a pipe to change the direction of the water so it doesn't flow to the neighbors yard?if not, every time it rains run out and start pumping water out of the pool so your water mixes and is "hidden" by the rain. Let the HOA prove the water was yours while it's raining.
    If I understand my pool plumbing correctly, I think the main drains in the deep end are tied into the same suction lines as the skimmer. There are three inputs to my pump - Pool suction and Spa suction (on an automatic three way valve) with the Pool suction further split into Skimmer and Cleaner (kreepy krauly). So the way I set it is for the pump to pull from the pool with about 1/3 of the water coming from the skimmer/drains and 2/3 coming from the creature cleaner (kreepy needs more suck to make him move).

    If I wanted to completely bypass the skimmer, I could pull from the spa but that's not advisable to fully drain (my builder told me to NEVER drain the spa fully if the pool is full). The other option would be to sink a vacuum hose to the bottom of the pool and pull 100% of the water from the creature cleaner port. That would eliminate the skimmer/main-drains totally.

    As for the HOA, I'm actually Vice President of the board and I chair the architectural review committee so I'm not too worried. But I am a decent fellow and I don't like to cause problems or go looking for trouble Looking at it from my neighbors POV, he does have a legitimate complaint with the discharge water and we struck a gentlemen's agreement with a handshake over the wall that I would do my level best to not flood his property with pool water. He had a really bad experience a few years back with his other neighbor's pool overflowing into his property during a bad stretch of rain storms and his backyard turned into a 3 ft deep swamp that cost a lot of money to remediate. So I get his prickliness on the issue....

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    Re: Would like some advice

    Quote Originally Posted by tim5055 View Post
    i can't imagine unless the roof was just painted that VOCs will be an issue.

    Most who are harvesting rain water run the captured water through a stocking or skimmer sock to catch the junk from the roof.
    Yeah, I understand. But most folks also have lots of other junk on their roofs (Dish Network satellite, metal flashing, risers for plumbing, vents, skylights, etc, etc). All of that "stuff" represents possible sources of contamination to the water. I'd also be worried about high metal levels like Cu and Fe leaching out of those things. I'm sure the water would be perfectly fine for landscape plants and general watering, but I'm not convinced (yet) it would be good for a pool.

    Don't get me wrong, I like the idea a lot!! I'm just always skeptical by nature and I'd have to convince myself it'll work...

    - - - Updated - - -

    Sorry for posting this a third time....I'm still learning the Forum user interface....

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    We do not use the corrected TA. Use the test result in PoolMath directly
    Yeah, the Taylor kit instructions mentioned that there is some dispute on whether or not to correct for the alkalinity of CYA. I guess this is not the right place to discuss it, but is there a discussion post that details any of this? I guess I'm on the side of using proper correction factors and being able to compare TA values accurately based on chemistry (some folks don't use CYA, so you can't really compare a CYA/non-CYA pool TA results...), but I'd love to read a wider discussion of the issue.

    Thanks!!

  15. Back To Top    #15
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    Re: Would like some advice

    PoolMath does the correction internally.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Would like some advice

    I let the first 5 min of rainwater drain off then harvest. I figure the roof is "clean" at that point.
    TFP Moderator Chris V. ~16K Pool & Spa, 48NSF DE, IG Plaster Circa 2000, Intermatic PE653, Challenger pump with a 2 speed B2984, 20gal stenner chlorine injection, Houston, TX
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    Re: Would like some advice

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    PoolMath does the correction internally.
    Thank you, sir! Good to know.

    So just to clarify (pardon my ignorance), when TFP recommends a TA of 70-80, that includes the CYA alkalinity, correct? Just measure the TA with my Taylor kit and aim for the TFP recommended level?

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Would like some advice

    The recommendations we make are what the test shows.
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    Re: Would like some advice

    Quote Originally Posted by SunnyOptimism View Post
    anonapersona,

    That is an interesting idea and I will look into it. I did just recently cut out all of my scuppers (I HATE those things!!!) and had good solid gutters installed. I've always been interested in rain water collection and you're right that it would be a great way to fill a pool (assuming you can keep the rain water clean). I guess my only concern with roof runoff water is the chemistry of the water AFTER it runs down your roof. Yes, rainwater is clean, but roof runoff is not. Before putting any of that into a pool, I'd want it thoroughly tested to see what's in it. AT the very least, it's going to pick up some VOCs from the paint that's used on the roof as well as lots of dust and fine particulates...not necessarily stuff I want my kids swimming in.

    THANKS!!
    The first rain rinses off the worst of the dust and after that it's not too bad. I actually channel my runoff into the spa where it serves as a settling basin. The huge majority of the dust stays in the spa. When the rain stops, I move the valves around and drain the spa through the filter and fill the pool. Just brushing everything at the spa drain pretty much gets it all out the first day.

    VOC = Volatile Organic Compounds. Volatile: easily evaporated at normal temperatures. At the temperatures roofs get in Arizona, I seriously doubt there are any complex hydrocarbons left to taint the pool water.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
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