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Thread: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

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    Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Hi everyone, this is my first post, although I have been a stalker of this forum for a couple of months now. I followed the TFP advice to open our pool after all the pool store stuff failed to clear up my swamp.

    We got it clear and the kids swam a few times...thanks! Then, came vacation Bible school where my family works up at the church basically all day every day for a week or more. I tested and kept the chlorine at the high end of acceptable swimming levels for the whole week, but didn't vacuum.

    There was quite a bit of stuff on the bottom to be vacuumed up after that, but the water was still clear and my chlorine and ph numbers were still good. The day before Father's Day we got the Hayward AquaCritter to help my poor husband out (because he has to do all the vacuuming...I'm too short). We put the critter in Saturday morning (June 14th) and haven't seen the bottom of our pool since. It stirred up all that stuff and turned the whole pool green and the filter just hasn't gotten it all out yet.

    I started SLAMing that evening. I kept it at the pool calculator level for a couple of days, then moved to the higher level on the chlorine/cya chart for several days and even got it up to the mustard algae level for 24hrs just to be sure.

    It is blue now, has been for a couple of days, but no clarity at all. I have stopped SLAMing since passing the OCLT and my CC is at 0 or just barely .5 for days now. I'm just wondering why it is taking as long this time to clear up as it did when it was a swamp?

    Seems like 2 weeks is a long time not to be able to swim in the middle of summer. Here are my numbers from this morning:

    FC 8.5
    CC .5
    ph 7.5
    CH 175
    TA 110
    CYA 60 (which is where we wanted it because our pool gets full sun all day long)

    Thanks for reading my mini-book!
    24' AG Vinyl 13,600g SD-60 SandDollar Sand filter, Dynamo 1.5hp pump, Hayward AquaCritter

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    Technically you have not finished the SLAM because the water is not clear. But, it might just be a filtration issue at this point.

    I might suggest trying to Deep Clean your Sand Filter and see if that helps. The you could try using a little DE in the filter to see if that helps clear the water: http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...-a-sand-filter

    BTW, we recommend the use of PoolMath now.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Yours sounds like mine was for a while (except for your "green" comment) after we got our M5 robot. The robot was filtering up lots of fine particles, but it was also stirring them up. If I ran it, the pool was dull and cloudy for days until the fine particles settled as it seemed that they were not being captured by the sand filter.

    Read this on adding DE powder to a sand filter to help it catch more of the fine particles. It may help you. Add DE to a Sand Filter. An alternative to the DE powder (but follow the same instructions) that many consider a safer material is cellulose fiber filter media.
    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: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Thanks for the reply!

    So, would your recommendation be to keep SLAMing till it's clear? And is the poolmath link the same as the pool calculator? The pool calculator has a link for "classic view" that links to the pool math page you recommended. The pool calculator numbers is where I started, but then read a thread about the difference between what the pool calculator recommended for shock level (18 for me) and what the chlorine/cya chart recommended (24 for me). In that thread, the general answer seemed to me that the higher level in the chart would do the process faster than the level from the pool calculator, but that both numbers were sufficient to clear it over time. I could have misunderstood what I read, though.

    We did a pool store product strip to clean the filter during the opening process (about 2 months ago)...would you still recommend the deep clean?

    Also, the DE method has intrigued me, but somewhere along the way I thought someone told me (prob a pool store employee) that it wasn't good to open up your filter and you wanted to do it as little as possible. Is that not true?
    24' AG Vinyl 13,600g SD-60 SandDollar Sand filter, Dynamo 1.5hp pump, Hayward AquaCritter

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    the "classic view" is NOT the same as PoolMath. PoolMath is hosted here and has updates. poolcalculator was abandoned by its owner (until very recently), but we can not make updates to it as we would like. So we now use PoolMath. One of the changes to PoolMath was to make the shock levels consistent with Pool School.

    Yes, deep clean ... you will be surprised by the gunk that comes out and this will settle the sand bed which may help the filtration.

    Forget anything a pool store employee has ever told you.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    I'm just reading the article about adding DE to the filter and realize that you don't have to open it up to do that. So I guess my question about it being bad to open your filter up would only apply to the deep cleaning suggestion.

    Sorry, I'm such a newbie. We just got our pool in the middle of last summer, so every bit of this is new to me. Thanks for your patience!
    24' AG Vinyl 13,600g SD-60 SandDollar Sand filter, Dynamo 1.5hp pump, Hayward AquaCritter

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Quote Originally Posted by Swinsonfamily View Post
    We did a pool store product strip to clean the filter during the opening process (about 2 months ago)...would you still recommend the deep clean?

    Also, the DE method has intrigued me, but somewhere along the way I thought someone told me (prob a pool store employee) that it wasn't good to open up your filter and you wanted to do it as little as possible. Is that not true?
    in the future I would probably save my money on the pool store sand filter cleaners as they are probably better at making money for them than they are at cleaning the filter. My pool/sand filter is about 8 yeas old, but from comments from the former owner I double it has ever been opened or cleaned.

    You do not need to open it to add DE or cellulose powder as you can add it to the skimmer. The page I linked to explains it in detail.
    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: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Okay, thanks. I'll change my pool calculator link to the poolmath link you suggested. And we'll deep clean the filter. I'll let you know how it goes.

    Thanks again!!
    24' AG Vinyl 13,600g SD-60 SandDollar Sand filter, Dynamo 1.5hp pump, Hayward AquaCritter

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Quote Originally Posted by Swinsonfamily View Post
    I'm just reading the article about adding DE to the filter and realize that you don't have to open it up to do that. So I guess my question about it being bad to open your filter up would only apply to the deep cleaning suggestion.

    Sorry, I'm such a newbie. We just got our pool in the middle of last summer, so every bit of this is new to me. Thanks for your patience!
    I'm new around here also, but what I have been taught is just to pay it forward and help the folks who come along after you. Everyone is new once and usually has lots of questions ask away.
    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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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Great for Tim that your filter seems to be working. But the OP seems to have a filtration problem and verifying the sand bed is clean and settled is a good first step. And EVERYONE should likely follow the sand cleaning process every couple years.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Doing the deep cleaning for more than an hour now and still the water isn't completely clear! I'm hoping this could be our issue!! I'll keep you posted. Thanks so much
    24' AG Vinyl 13,600g SD-60 SandDollar Sand filter, Dynamo 1.5hp pump, Hayward AquaCritter

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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Deep cleaned the sand for about an hour and a half till the water was clear and we could actually see the sand when we were done (we couldn't for the first hour or so). The pressure of the water returning to the pool is now much harder than it was before (although our gauge never showed a change even enough to warrant backwashing - we did backwash some anyway, but not because the gauge showed it was time). Hoping this will solve the mystery. Either way, it OBVIOUSLY needed to be done!! Next we'll add the DE if another step is needed to get the water clear.

    Thanks again for your time! You guys are a tremendous help (not like those pool store employees!)
    24' AG Vinyl 13,600g SD-60 SandDollar Sand filter, Dynamo 1.5hp pump, Hayward AquaCritter

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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Welcome to TFP

    Does the gauge drop to zero when you turn off the pump? Just checking.
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    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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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Great. There is a possibility that the gauge isn't the best. New ones are fairly inexpensive.

    See HERE
    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: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Did you brush the pool at all while SLAMming?
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    You can lead a horse to (clear) water, but you can't force him to swim in it!

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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    I haven't checked the gauge when the pump is off, so I'll do that and order a new one if that one is no good. Thanks!

    We brushed at least once per day while SLAMing (well, my husband did, again, I'm too short to do it effectively...haha)
    24' AG Vinyl 13,600g SD-60 SandDollar Sand filter, Dynamo 1.5hp pump, Hayward AquaCritter

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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Quote Originally Posted by Swinsonfamily View Post
    Okay, thanks. I'll change my pool calculator link to the poolmath link you suggested. And we'll deep clean the filter. I'll let you know how it goes.

    Thanks again!!
    If your bar of favorites is as full as mine you can just link to the "Pool Math" or "TFP" home. If TFP then it's one click to get to pool math and same going the other way. I use to have both linked but dropped the math one as I realized it was only one click away in the upper left of the home screen. Just a thought.
    Last edited by Kiss4aFrog; 06-26-2014 at 04:55 PM. Reason: Said upper right :-(
    '70s IG Vinyl 32K gal, Lazy L, Hayward SuperPump 1.5hp 120V, S240 Sand Filter W/DE
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Thanks kiss4afrog, that's what I did this morning!

    A little update: It's still cloudy this morning, but I think it's a better cloudy than before (at least I'm hopeful).
    .
    And the gauge does go to zero when I turn the pump off. It's just never really changed pressure much. The most noticeable pressure change is a 2 or 3 psi drop when we attach the critter and the whole time it's running. Seems odd to me. I would think if anything the tiny hole on the bottom of the critter would make the pressure go up. But, I'm definitely not a pool genius...LOL
    24' AG Vinyl 13,600g SD-60 SandDollar Sand filter, Dynamo 1.5hp pump, Hayward AquaCritter

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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    The pressure gauge on the filter is almost always reading the pressure between the pump and the filter media. But that is given the pump is freely getting all the water it wants and it's freely able to return it to the pool.

    A major restriction on the "skimmer" or intake side might cause the pressure to go down because the pump is working harder to draw the water in. Because the pump has to suck harder on one side it can't build as much pressure on the other. The AquaCritter goes on your intake side right ??

    A restriction on the return side could increase the pressure but normally that gauge is only reading the pressure against the filter media giving you an idea of the filters condition.

    In your case you want to know your "clean" pressure, what it is after a through backwash and look for that 25% increase before backwashing again. When you have the AquaCritter working you just need to look for 2-3 psi less than that 25%.
    '70s IG Vinyl 32K gal, Lazy L, Hayward SuperPump 1.5hp 120V, S240 Sand Filter W/DE
    Solar Blanket, Well Water, Borax Added, TF-100 tester. ? too cold
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    Re: Water still cloudy after following all the rules

    Update: I went out of town over the weekend but hubby kept up the slam while I was gone. We are most of the way there as of this morning. Water is clear enough to see the pattern on the liner clear out to the middle of the pool now. We have not yet added the DE but are going to do that today. We passed the OCLT and the CC is looking good, so I think with the DE we'll have it ready to swim by tomorrow.

    Thanks for all the help!
    24' AG Vinyl 13,600g SD-60 SandDollar Sand filter, Dynamo 1.5hp pump, Hayward AquaCritter

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