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Thread: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

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    peterdaly's Avatar
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    New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    I've had the pool for a year, and things have mostly run well without much real thought or attention paid to chemistry.

    Water is a bit hazy, and my wife took it to the local pool store to get tested.

    Our test strips say CYA and pH are just a tad low. Chlorine is indicated as low on the strips, but in the OK range.

    Last week I tweaked the AutoPilot percentage down, and adjusted it's temperature compensation down (it was showing 8 degrees hotter than actual), and I probably backed it down too far.

    Here's the pool store stats from today:
    FC 3.3
    TC 3.3
    CC 0.0
    Alkalinity 99
    pH 7.2
    Calcium hardness 210
    CYA 24
    Copper 0
    Iron 0
    Total desolved solids 0
    Saturation Index -0.36

    Their advice was to buy 5 gallons of chlorine and shock the pool. My wife called me before buying anything, and I told her we'd just bump the SWG up, although I really wanted time to see and run the numbers myself. Last week they had us dump in 5lb of calcium, at which point the pool started to cloud a bit. I don't know if that is related, or a coincidence.

    What I think I know about pool chemistry, is that with CC of zero, although I should up the FC level, shock (and 5 gallons of chlorine) is not needed. Water is slightly cloudy, but I can still see bottom 8' down no problem.

    Here's what I did a few minutes ago.
    1. Bumped up SWG percentage
    2. Set SWG to boost for 24 hours
    3. Added 2lb stabilizer from Wal-Mart, at half the pool store price.
    4. Added 30oz by weight of washing soda. (Much cheaper than pH Plus)

    Added stabilizer and washing soda per the pool math calculator here.

    So, I am here to learn. Other than not getting a TF100 test kit yet, what'd I do right or wrong? Is there other action I should take now to uncloud the water.

    Thanks.
    Fayetteville, NY -17K gal, IG vinyl, Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo Variable Speed Pump, FlowVis Flow Meter, Sand filter
    Self designed Arduino powered automation for pump and solar control, Solar Attic Pool Heater, AutoPilot Digital SWG, TF100

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    svenpup's Avatar
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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    Hey, I grew up in East Syracuse and used to live on Redfield Ave. Spent many a night at Mulligan's.

    First and foremost, since your water is hazy you should S.L.A.M.. You don't use your SWG for this as SWG is slow and steady, and SLAM is hard and fast.

    Never, never, never trust pool store testing. Also don't trust strips.

    IF your CYA really is 24 (big if) your CYA is too low for SWG. You want it at 30-40 for the SLAM, but when the SLAM is over raise it to 70-80. When you added 2 pounds what were you targeting?

    Did I mention the test kit?
    TFP Method Advanced Intermediate
    • 17,500 gallons - In Ground - Plaster - Hayward Swimclear 3020 Cartridge Filter - Sta-Rite Max-E-Glas Main Pump upgraded with A.O. Smith B2980 E-Plus New Centurion Two-Speed Motor - Polaris 280 Cleaner with Polaris PB4-60 Booster Pump - TightWatt2 Timer - Taylor K-2006 Test Kit - Pool Pilot Digital Nano SWCG

    Helpful Links: Pool School, BBB for Beginners, How to Shock (hint...it's a process not a product), Chlorine/CYA Chart, Jason's Pool Calculator

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    peterdaly's Avatar
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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    Pool math defaulted to 40 for cya target I think.
    Fayetteville, NY -17K gal, IG vinyl, Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo Variable Speed Pump, FlowVis Flow Meter, Sand filter
    Self designed Arduino powered automation for pump and solar control, Solar Attic Pool Heater, AutoPilot Digital SWG, TF100

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    peterdaly's Avatar
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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    Seeing how their is no way to get a good test kit this weekend...shall I go ahead and dump in a bit of bleach and hope for the best? How much?
    Fayetteville, NY -17K gal, IG vinyl, Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo Variable Speed Pump, FlowVis Flow Meter, Sand filter
    Self designed Arduino powered automation for pump and solar control, Solar Attic Pool Heater, AutoPilot Digital SWG, TF100

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    peterdaly's Avatar
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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    Pool is 85 degrees, if that matters.
    Fayetteville, NY -17K gal, IG vinyl, Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo Variable Speed Pump, FlowVis Flow Meter, Sand filter
    Self designed Arduino powered automation for pump and solar control, Solar Attic Pool Heater, AutoPilot Digital SWG, TF100

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    svenpup's Avatar
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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    Assume CYA = 40, your shock level is 16. To perform a SLAM you raise FC to shock level, and retest and adjust FC back to shock level "as frequently as practical, but not more than once per hour, and not less than twice a day." In the beginning the FC demand will be the highest, so you want to be doing it every hour or two.

    Test strips and garden variety test kits don't measure above 10 FC. This is why the recommended test kits have the FAS/DPD chlorine test which measures FC up to 50.

    You could give this a shot with an OTO chlorine test that you should be able to find around town. It won't be accurate, but you get an idea of FC at high levels.

    • Blinding yellow is about 10.
    • School bus yellow is about 12-13.
    • Hunter orange is around 18,
    • up around 25 it starts to look pumpkin orange.
    • Eventually will turn brown if you get high enough.
    TFP Method Advanced Intermediate
    • 17,500 gallons - In Ground - Plaster - Hayward Swimclear 3020 Cartridge Filter - Sta-Rite Max-E-Glas Main Pump upgraded with A.O. Smith B2980 E-Plus New Centurion Two-Speed Motor - Polaris 280 Cleaner with Polaris PB4-60 Booster Pump - TightWatt2 Timer - Taylor K-2006 Test Kit - Pool Pilot Digital Nano SWCG

    Helpful Links: Pool School, BBB for Beginners, How to Shock (hint...it's a process not a product), Chlorine/CYA Chart, Jason's Pool Calculator

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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    If you are going to SLAM you really need your own FAS-DPD kit like the one mentioned by Svenpup. The TF100 is expensive when you first look at it but you have to remember all the trips to the pool store you won't be making at $3.50 a gallon. Having your own kit is the way to go. Using strips isn't as accurate but usually more accurate than the pool store.

    You have a VINYL pool. Calcium is usually added to plaster pools to protect the pool from the water leaching calcium out of the pool and damaging or weakening the surface or grout. Calcium can cause cloudiness.

    If you SLAM you will get the pool to where it should be and between proper timely testing and your SWG you should be good. The SWG is a bit expensive to replace so it's usually better to use some $3 chlorine to treat a pool or "shock" it rather than turning the SWG up and shortening it's life. The SWG can't generate enough chlorine to "shock".

    When normally maintaining your pool you need a 70-80 CYA. With the CYA addition, did you use the sock method in a skimmer or ??? When you say something is a "tad" low it really doesn't tell us anything as your low can be someone elses overdose. You really need to use numbers.

    30oz of washing soda to raise pH to ??
    '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
    1979, 275gal Conway Emerald Spa P-100-2, ES-2 Spa Pack, bromine floater, indoor
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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    Maybe a picture would be helpful to see the cloudiness. Maybe it's not algae but just the added calcium. Did the water clear up after the addition or has it stayed the same ??
    '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
    1979, 275gal Conway Emerald Spa P-100-2, ES-2 Spa Pack, bromine floater, indoor
    TF-100, Best test kit - TFTestkits.net
    Please help keep the lights on, become a TFP Supporter!

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    peterdaly's Avatar
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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    Hard to get a good photo. Shallow end seems clear. Have to look in the deep end to notice anything. Picture looks much worse than it really is.

    Just dumped in enough bleach to bring FC to 16. Have one more bottle on hand.

    Seeing how I have no real way to test FC, I think I'm done for tonight, but could dump in the other bottle later if people think that would be prudent.uploadfromtaptalk1405127757751.jpg
    Fayetteville, NY -17K gal, IG vinyl, Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo Variable Speed Pump, FlowVis Flow Meter, Sand filter
    Self designed Arduino powered automation for pump and solar control, Solar Attic Pool Heater, AutoPilot Digital SWG, TF100

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    peterdaly's Avatar
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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    It's not taking my shallow end photo...but that looks clear.

    Stabilizer was dumped into the skimmer a couple hours ago. I would guess it may be too soon to know if that on it's own would help.

    When I said tad, I was referring to the test strips, and tad bit low may be as accurate a number as they can report, based on their reputation here.

    Based on the test strips, I can assure you my FC is now over 10 for sure.

    PH target is 7.5 for the washing soda, per pool math defaults.
    Fayetteville, NY -17K gal, IG vinyl, Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo Variable Speed Pump, FlowVis Flow Meter, Sand filter
    Self designed Arduino powered automation for pump and solar control, Solar Attic Pool Heater, AutoPilot Digital SWG, TF100

  11. Back To Top    #11
    peterdaly's Avatar
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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    Crystal clear this morning!
    Fayetteville, NY -17K gal, IG vinyl, Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo Variable Speed Pump, FlowVis Flow Meter, Sand filter
    Self designed Arduino powered automation for pump and solar control, Solar Attic Pool Heater, AutoPilot Digital SWG, TF100

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    Re: New to pool chemistry...cloudy pool.

    I understand, sometimes "tad" is as accurate as it gets

    If you're satisfied with the way it looks than you just need to maintain it. If the cloudiness returns than you will need to SLAM it. You might want to have a complete water test done including CC (Combined Chlorine) to see where you are at. If it's above .5 there could still be live algae in there waiting to come back.

    Then your next step would be to give the CYA a week to dissolve and then retest it and bring the level up to 70 and then wait another week and test again. If you're tossing it in a sock and into the skimmer it can take up to a week from the time it dissolves from the sock and actually shows up in the water.
    You should raise your FC target to the expected new CYA level. http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...art-slam-shock
    Once you get it up to the 70-80 range the SWG wants it to be you should try to maintain 8-9ppm FC all the time.
    It would be nice if you had your own test kit.

    CYA: You increase CYA by adding cyanuric acid, often sold as stabilizer or conditioner. CYA is available as a solid and as a liquid. The liquid costs a lot more, and generally isn't worth the extra expense. Solid stabilizer can take up to a week to fully register on the test, so don't retest your CYA level for a week after adding some. Solid stabilizer is best added by placing it in a sock in the skimmer basket and kneading the sock occasionally. The pump should be run for 24 hours after adding solid stabilizer and you should avoid backwashing/cleaning the filter for a week.

    Water balance for a SWG: http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...rine-generator
    '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
    1979, 275gal Conway Emerald Spa P-100-2, ES-2 Spa Pack, bromine floater, indoor
    TF-100, Best test kit - TFTestkits.net
    Please help keep the lights on, become a TFP Supporter!

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