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Thread: Lowering my TA if my PH is where it should be?

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    Lowering my TA if my PH is where it should be?

    I am a first time pool owner so please bare with me. I took my first tests the other day and it looks like I need to lower my TA. The PoolCalculator says to first lower my PH to 7.2 but what do I do if mine is already there? Do I just add some Muriatic Acid?

    I have also added about 32oz of bleach since the chlorine looks WAY low. I have a SWG and a 15x48 pool fwiw.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Lowering my TA if my PH is where it should be?

    Step 1: Throw the strips away and invest in one of the Recommended Test Kits.

    Step 2: Review the Lowering Total Alkalinity article in Pool School.

    Step 3: Use PoolMath and not the abandoned pool calculator.
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Lowering my TA if my PH is where it should be?

    As it says in the How-to
    There are two reasons to lower your total alkalinity (TA) right away, because you want to slow down the rate that the PH rises, or if high TA is contributing to a high calcium saturation index (CSI) which puts you at risk of calcium scaling. You shouldn't lower TA just to reach a target number. Make sure you actually have one of the above issues before lowering your TA.
    Which of those two conditions do you have?

    On to issue number two: low FC. If your SWG can't keep up with the demand, either it's failed or something is eating the chlorine it generates. If the cell is bubbling and there are no warning lights on the controller, it's almost certainly working. So something is destroying the chlorine.

    Only two things consume free chlorine: Sunlight and organics. Organics includes, leaves, sweat, and dead skin cells. If your CYA level is adequate, you can rule out sunlight. But you can't test CYA with those strips.

    Well then, how about running an overnight loss test? Oops, you can't do that, either.... the strips can't measure chlorine levels accurately enough. What if you start at 10. Is it 7, or 8, or 9 the next morning?

    Now we're getting to the root problem. You need accurate test results and you need to know what they actually mean.
    I suggest you spend some time in Pool School, particularly the ABCs and everything on the chemistry page. You could skip reading test kits compared and just go straight to tftestkits.net and get a TF100 ordered, along with some salt test strips. The other option is a K-2006 Taylor kit, which is hard to find in stock anywhere. They will try to sell you a K-2005 and tell you the DPD test is the same as the FAS-DPD test, but it's not.
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    Re: Lowering my TA if my PH is where it should be?

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    Step 1: Throw the strips away and invest in one of the Recommended Test Kits.

    Step 2: Review the Lowering Total Alkalinity article in Pool School.

    Step 3: Use PoolMath and not the abandoned pool calculator.
    I actually was in the PoolMath calculator, did not word that right my bad. I have been reading the How-to's and ABC's and the SWG page that has the values you want to achieve the past couple nights it's just being new to it some stuff I get and a lot am just over whelmed by it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320 View Post
    As it says in the How-to Which of those two conditions do you have?

    On to issue number two: low FC. If your SWG can't keep up with the demand, either it's failed or something is eating the chlorine it generates. If the cell is bubbling and there are no warning lights on the controller, it's almost certainly working. So something is destroying the chlorine.

    Only two things consume free chlorine: Sunlight and organics. Organics includes, leaves, sweat, and dead skin cells. If your CYA level is adequate, you can rule out sunlight. But you can't test CYA with those strips.

    Well then, how about running an overnight loss test? Oops, you can't do that, either.... the strips can't measure chlorine levels accurately enough. What if you start at 10. Is it 7, or 8, or 9 the next morning?

    Now we're getting to the root problem. You need accurate test results and you need to know what they actually mean.
    I suggest you spend some time in Pool School, particularly the ABCs and everything on the chemistry page. You could skip reading test kits compared and just go straight to tftestkits.net and get a TF100 ordered, along with some salt test strips. The other option is a K-2006 Taylor kit, which is hard to find in stock anywhere. They will try to sell you a K-2005 and tell you the DPD test is the same as the FAS-DPD test, but it's not.
    Ok guys you know what I am going to order a TF100 tomorrow consider me sold. I was hoping to get by with what came with my SWG until next year but as you said a lot of the adjustments you make are reliant upon one another. It is kind of wild guessing when you're working with these basic 3-way test strips.

    I did add some stuff since this post after browsing through the articles and PoolMath calculations...while my readings probably aren't the most accurate I feel like it helped tremendously. I did what it told me to added about 32oz of bleach and around 24oz of Mule Team Borax. Now that I am thinking about it though I might have made a mistake on the Borax since that recommendation was based off my Borate being "0" in which the value wasnt even filled nor tested for. Oops. I hope this is not dangerous adding the Borax alone?

    Whatever the case I re-tested and unlike before everything is now in the "OK" range. The TA is now 120 and my FC is listed at 5 now.

    I am still getting the TF100 so that way I can accurately make my adjustments. No more PoolMath for me until I have all the tests I need. I am even scared to jump in now oh boy

    The SWG is brand new and working could actually see it making the chlorine. I haven't had one error since hooking it up. It is barely the second day at 4x hours per day that it's been running so perhaps it just needed some time and bleach to get going? I feel like I'm getting there but do NOT feel good about the Borax well see how it goes once my kit comes, thanks guys.

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