Well I did it! I was doing so good keeping a clean clear pool (knowing ABSOLUTELY NOTHING) about how to really do that but spending cash hand over fist on Phos Free, dry acid, chlorine pucks, Poolblaster Max HD, etc etc. Then the rain hit. And it hit HARD. I was not prepared for this.
I've done a lot of reading on this site today and want to first say THANK YOU to all the super knowledgeable people out there sharing all of their great info, experience and knowledge as well as spending their time helping us newbies fumble around towards a clear / clean pool. You are all truly an awesome group and I'm very thankful I found this site and spent the evening reading pool school etc.
I've only started Pool School mind you. I'm at war with this algae and have been frustrated with my lack of results in the last 48 hours. I have a LOT to learn. That said I skimmed some things and got to the stuff I needed to start. Chlorine! So that's really IN BLEACH!? Humph! Imagine that! Okay this stuff is packed with 8.25%... Feeling confident. BLEACH! *shakes head* 6 dollar sacks of shock all this time and all I need is bleach...
1. A test kit. Again I went ahead and went to Leslie's. Knowing full well there are better test kits available, I've armed myself with Leslie's Complete Pool Care DPD Test Kit - measures Free & Total Chlorine or Bromine, pH, Acid & Base Demand, Total Alkalinity, Calcium Hardness and Cyanuric Acid. Pool boy that helped me find it asked if I was tired of coming up there to get my water tested. My children were there and just grinned awaiting my response. It's a good thing they were. He assured me this was the best kit they sell. 69 bucks. Pool boy stated it's basically what they used to do tests. I had to chime in... "Does that mean my pool is about to get more green"? Neither of us laughed. The kids did though.
2. Thoroughly vac'd the pool with my Pool Blaster Max HD. LOVE that thing! Scolded the kids though because there should NEVER be pebbles in the pool and I KNOW I didn't put them there. But no more grass, leaves or rocks. Just green stuff which I've now managed to stir into a frenzy causing my little pool to now look like a swamp.
3. Cleaned the cartridge using the flat setting on my multi-function spray nozzle that has 8 functions ... OFF isn't one of them but it seems to get the cartridge nice and white and clean again. Is this an OK practice? Seems silly to replace it every time it gets gunk in it but then again, I'm WAY out of me element here!
4. Spent some time staring at all the little bottles. Made a drink. Read the directions on the lid several times. I can do this.
5. Deep breath. Got my first test completed. pH = 7.2 I think. Okay. CYA = 80!!! SERIOUSLY!? It says to xfer the combined solution of water and Cyanuric Acid Reagent into the thingy until the black dot goes away. It's at 80! Getting nervous now. FC= either 0 or 1 .. hard to tell. I think it's 1.
6. Going to the nifty pool calculator thing. Plug in my numbers. According to this thing I should have a min FC of 6, target FC of 9 and a shock FC of 31. No problem! Wait what? 172 oz of 8.25% bleach!? REALLY? These bottles are 64 oz bottles. I hesitantly dumped them in.
7. Looking to check FC again approx 1 hr later. HEY! It's RED! But wait the scale only goes to 10. Looks like the water color actually matches the 10 mark. Re-read the directions. It says here if the color is off the scale to repeat the test and only use 4.5 mL of pool water and then dilute to the 9 mL mark with tap water. NOOOO our tap water is TERRIBLE around here. Probably the worst in the country. I used bottled water. Now my color puts me at FC = 5. Hummm Ok so I guess my FC is 10. Will 44 more oz of bleach get me to FC @ 31?
At this point I'm scared. Should I re-measure CYA? Can I re-measure CYA at this point? Can my shock level in such a small pool really be 31? Need a nod and a push at this point.