I just read the sticky above on how to do this and have a few questions.
By the way, I've ordered a TF-100 kit, and I expect delivery by this Monday, so I figured I'd wait until then to attack my algae. I've never used the methods of this forum before, but wanted to see if I could convert to your methods, as I'm getting the impression after reading your forum that your methods are more effective, more scientifically valid, and I think, cheaper as well (as cheaper is important to me... I always look for good deals.)
I have a 7600 gallon round pool, so it's not really that big, but I'm seeing green, mainly towards the perimeter of the pool, but not so much in the middle.
In the sticky, I see this statement: "The very first time through the cycle you can assume that the FC level starts at zero. After that you want to test the FC level and only add as much chlorine as needed to bring it back up to shock level."
Why should should I assume I'm starting at zero? Shouldn't I use the test kit to see what my FC level is, and then use pool math to only add enough chlorine to that starting point to bring it to shock level?
By the way, my pool came with an automatic chlorinator, which I've been using with 3 inch tabs to add chlorine, but I only bought one bucket of the tabs, and after reading here, I'm seriously thinking of not buying any more of those and switching to another chlorine source. I know a lot of you are fans of chlorine bleach, but I think that requires daily maintenance, and I was amazed to see that I can buy a SWG system for only $135, so I'm seriously considering buying that and installing it myself (to avoid the daily maintenance), as I see that the people in this forum consider that to also be an okay chlorine source, better than the 3 inch tabs in my bucket.
Having said that, I read in the sticky that I'll still need something like chlorine bleach to kill the algae, because a SWG can't deliver the chlorine fast enough for slamming, plus I don't even have a SWG yet. This is okay to me... I'll go ahead and purchase chlorine bleach for the project of killing algae.
Is this just the regular chlorine bleach that they sell in the grocery store for use in the laundry room, the type that you mix in white white clothing (not the bleach for colored clothing)?
Also, I should mention that I've been testing my water with the test strips that came with my pool, but I've just used the last strip, which is one reason I ordered a test kit. I thought my chlorine has been normal, which is why the algae surprised me, but I should mention the simple strips just measured 3 things: chlorine, PH, and alkalinity.
I don't completely understand the chemistry of chlorine, but doesn't free chlorine break down into something called chloramines? Could the chloramines be getting registered by my strips, giving me a false confidence in how much free chlorine I have? (There is just one chlorine reading on the strip.) Could this have contributed to the algae growth? I guess this will all get fixed when I get I get my TF-100 test kit.
I also have a white plastic stair steps thing in my pool to make it easier to step down into it. It's actually hollow and filled with sand to weight it down, and it's screwed into my wooden deck. I'm kind of worried that it could be a source point for the algae. Do you think that during the algae treatment I'd like to start on Monday, that I should remove those steps and wash it down in case it has algae on it? I hope it's not too heavy to lift out of the pool. I wonder if I could replace the screws (there are 8 of them) with something (maybe bolts and nuts?) to make it easier to remove and reinstall in the future, in case this algae problem ever happens again.
Also, unless I wait all the way until next weekend to start this algae treatment, that means to dedicate the 4 hours suggested by the sticky means at least some of it will be done in the dark. Is it okay to do this at nighttime, or do I need sunlight for any reason?
Actually now that think of it, if I start Monday, that doesn't mean that's when I'll start shocking, as I see that if necessary, I could have to adjust PH and CYA before starting. I have no idea what my CYA level is, as I've never measured it. If I have to increase it, pool math says to add "stabilizer" Where could I find that, and is there any common household object that contains it (like bleach contains chlorine, for example). Or should I just go to a pool store and ask for stabilizer?
I've actually owned pools at my two previous houses, but after reading this forum, I see that I never really had nearly the understanding of pool chemistry like the people in this forum do (and wound up spending a lot of money at pool stores treating the pools in ways that might not have been optimal). I'm glad I found this forum.