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Thread: Mustard algae or pollen?

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    Mustard algae or pollen?

    Hello, I am in need of help. I have been battling what I thought was a mustard algae problem for about 3 weeks. Slammed pool 2 times before over last 3 weeks and again last night. my stats are:
    FC 32.5
    CC 0
    PH 7.5
    CYA 60
    TA 110

    Brought FC level to 34 at 10 pm last night, at 6 am this morning it was 32.5 with CC of 0. While brushing this morning there was still puffs of green on stairs and shallow end. Every thing that I have read suggests that at shock levels like 34 mustard algae should not be present.I have brushed this pool so many times over the past 3 weeks that I wore out a brush. I am getting what looks like mustard algae on stairs and floor and also on sloped walls in deep end. I have read in forum that if its pollen it will be on floor only so that's got me confused. I have brushed very meticulously, no light fixture or main drain in pool. I removed ladder, and checked under treads and they were spotless, no algae. I also scrubbed skimmer boxes. Water has been very clear in shallow end, but cloudy in deep end from brushing what ever this is in pool. Any help would be very much appreciated!
    30K, IG Vinyl, Hayward Pro Series Sand S244T, 1 HP Super Pump, Ultra Auto Vac

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Mustard algae or pollen?

    A couple of questions:

    Are those your numbers with a recommended test kit or strip/pool store?

    Have you actually been conducting a SLAM (consistently keeping FC above your shock level)?

    Have you checked the normal hiding places that allow algae to grow due to poor water circulation (around ladders/inside light housings)?

    With a 1.5 chlorine loss overnight, something is in the water.
    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: Mustard algae or pollen?

    TF100 test kit, 1st time by the book with no results, second time held for 24 hours then kept level at 16ppm for 11 days, this time by the book again. Check all spots (no light fixture, no main drain, and removed ladder). just checked and after brushing about 2 hours ago their was a little brownish green line forming on step. touched it with finger and it just puffed up and disappeared.
    30K, IG Vinyl, Hayward Pro Series Sand S244T, 1 HP Super Pump, Ultra Auto Vac

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    Re: Mustard algae or pollen?

    It looks like you had an almost identical problem at the end of May 2013. What did you do then? You did not report an outcome so I assume your pool got cleared up between then and now, right?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Mustard algae or pollen?

    Quote Originally Posted by floridadreaming View Post
    TF100 test kit, 1st time by the book with no results
    There was no FC loss during you first SLAM? I'm sorry, I'm not understanding

    Quote Originally Posted by floridadreaming View Post
    second time held for 24 hours then kept level at 16ppm for 11 days
    With a CYA of 60 your SLAM level needs to be 24. if there was something in the water the 16 probably just held it at bay

    Quote Originally Posted by floridadreaming View Post
    checked and after brushing about 2 hours ago their was a little brownish green line forming on step. touched it with finger and it just puffed up and disappeared.
    You are going to need to conduct a SLAM. I'm concerned you don't understand what we mean as you said you did a SLAM "again last night" in your first post. A SLAM is a continuous procedure, usually conducted over several days/weeks, not a single application of sanitizer - as most would say "shocking the pool".

    For a proper SLAM you need to:
    Bring the FC level up to the shock level, in your case 24ppm
    Keep the FC level above the shock level
    Test and bring it back to shock level as often as possible (at least twice a day, but no more than every 30 minutes)
    Repeat
    Repeat
    Repeat
    Do not stop doing this until three criteria are met
    The water is clear
    CC is 0.5 or lower
    You pass an OCLT

    I haven't read any of your other posts, so I need to ask - what are you using to chlorinate?
    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: Mustard algae or pollen?

    Hello,
    Chart says with a CYA of 60 for mustard algae you should be at 34ppm. I am using sticks to chlorinate, When I slammed 3 weeks ago I used Clorox. I understand the process, held it for 2 days and this stuff just kept coming back with a vengeance! I spoke to local pool store and they said for mustard algae you need to bring ppm to 10 and hold for 10 days. I use sticks toget to and hold the 16ppm. I was skeptical but listened anyway and went to 16ppm because I knew my CYA was a little high(about 50 at that time). I did not post in May, and I am still fighting the same problem as then. I slammed last night and am still in the process using calcium hypo (had a 25 pound bucket and figured I would try that). Need to add pool was perfect upon opening and up to 3 weeks ago. Was extremely busy at work and let FC get low for a day or two and that's when this problem started.
    30K, IG Vinyl, Hayward Pro Series Sand S244T, 1 HP Super Pump, Ultra Auto Vac

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Mustard algae or pollen?

    Quote Originally Posted by floridadreaming View Post
    Hello,
    Chart says with a CYA of 60 for mustard algae you should be at 34ppm. I am using sticks to chlorinate, When I slammed 3 weeks ago I used Clorox. I understand the process, held it for 2 days and this stuff just kept coming back with a vengeance! I spoke to local pool store and they said for mustard algae you need to bring ppm to 10 and hold for 10 days. I use sticks toget to and hold the 16ppm. I was skeptical but listened anyway and went to 16ppm because I knew my CYA was a little high(about 50 at that time). I did not post in May, and I am still fighting the same problem as then. I slammed last night and am still in the process using calcium hypo (had a 25 pound bucket and figured I would try that). Need to add pool was perfect upon opening and up to 3 weeks ago. Was extremely busy at work and let FC get low for a day or two and that's when this problem started.
    You are trying to mix pool store advice and TFPC advice. It won't work! Their advice of 10ppm is way too low and even your 16ppm won't cut it.

    As I said before, a SLAM is a continous process, not a one night addition of chlorine. Additionally, you need to use liquid chlorine; 8.25% bleach or 10/12.5% chlorinating liquid. Your continuous use of solids are both too slow reacting and seem to be modifying your water chemestry - CYA has gone from 50 to 60.

    You need to read and follow the SLAM - Shock Level And Maintain procedures. Anything less is just going to drag out the process of getting your pool clear.
    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: Mustard algae or pollen?

    I know that you are right Tim. I just got frustrated and decided to give there way a try. I know it was a dumb move!
    30K, IG Vinyl, Hayward Pro Series Sand S244T, 1 HP Super Pump, Ultra Auto Vac

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Mustard algae or pollen?

    Quote Originally Posted by floridadreaming View Post
    I know that you are right Tim. I just got frustrated and decided to give there way a try. I know it was a dumb move!
    Don't feel like you are alone. Trust me, I am the most impatient person going. Look up "immediate gratification" and you will see my picture

    Human nature makes you think the folks at the pool store are professionals - they must know the best way. In my experience, no so much.

    Read over the SLAM directions, buy some chlorine and SLAM 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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    Re: Mustard algae or pollen?

    So should I be at a FC level of 24, or 34? I am going to head to store and load up on bleach!! Thank you all for your input!
    30K, IG Vinyl, Hayward Pro Series Sand S244T, 1 HP Super Pump, Ultra Auto Vac

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Mustard algae or pollen?

    Quote Originally Posted by floridadreaming View Post
    So should I be at a FC level of 24, or 34? I am going to head to store and load up on bleach!! Thank you all for your input!
    I will let folks who have dealt with mustard chime in (I haven't luckily) but my gut tells me 24, that is if your CYA hasn't risen with the granular you have put in. I'm not sure of the composition of the "sticks" you have been using either.

    You have talked about "green" a lot so I'm thinking you just have a normal algae bloom just waiting to explode.
    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: Mustard algae or pollen?

    If your "sticks" are trichlor (which seems most likely) then they'll be constantly raising your CYA level and requiring ever-higher FC levels.

    Any chance your CYA is higher than you think ? When did you last test it and what did you use ?
    Cedar hot tub, 680 US gallons - Snorkel wood-burning heater, canoe paddle, "offline" Intex 1000 GPH pump/filter with skimmer

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