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Thread: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

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    New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Hi all,

    New to the forum. Been reading a lot from pool school and just had pool handed over to me, so want to confirm some things before I move ahead.

    My pool info is in my signature, but one point to add is that unfortunately I started reading this forum AFTER the fact, so as a result you see I have a chlorinator (which I now realize I don't really need!) and the guy who started up and managed it for last 2 weeks was using that with the little pucks, so I'm a little worried about what that has done to my various levels. But anyways, got my TFT100 kit and here are my first results:

    CYA 60 (could be 50 but not sure how to read it...at 60 I could BARELY see the black dot...by the time the dot was completely obscured it was closer to 50 than 60 I think; I do have a lot of sunlight exposure, in Houston area, sun crosses pool all day with no shade)
    CL 1 (from the blue "daily" test kit)
    BR 2 (from the blue "daily" test kit)
    PH 8.2 (from the blue "daily" test kit)
    3.5 FC
    1.5 CC
    5 TC
    280 TA (yes, I wiped the dropper each drop and I tried twice and got same result both times)
    175 CH

    So based on these results and pool math, here's my actions I'm planning this evening:
    - add 15 oz of 10% liquid chlorine
    - add 105 oz of 31.45% - 20 Baume muriatic acid
    - add 302 oz calcium chloride

    questions
    - is it OK to leave CYA as is for now? Especially considering sun exposure?
    - for the liquid chlorine, I saw ace hardware has "HTH liquid chlorinator" which lists 10% sodium hypochlorite, 90% other - that's fine, right? I was worried about the 90% other, but this is considered "liquid chlorine", and same as bleach but different strength?
    - what do I do about the astonishingly high TA? Will the suggestions from poolmath for the muriatic bring me down to 7.2 then aerate? Or do I assume it's static electricity from the dropper and give it a week or 2?
    - what about calcium chloride - is there any trick to buying this that doesn't introduce unwanted chemicals? Will they have something at ACE that will get me what I need? (really worried about buying something like these "pucks" that unnecessarily raise other levels.

    Thanks for your help and patience with the new guy!
    20K gal, IG plaster/pebble-sheen, dual pump - Intelliflo VS and 2 HP Whisperflo pump, DE Filter 60 Sqft Plus, Pentair Kreepy Racer Cleaner, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, spa, TF100, new pool (07/2014), Houston area

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    welcome to the forum.
    Bring the PH down with muriatic acid. Add the appropriate amount, then wait 30 minutes and test again. The level may actually be higher so you may need to add more.
    the second thing to do would be to double check the FC and CC tests with the powder test. 1.5 CC means you have a problem and would need to SLAM to bring that down.
    The HTH chlorine is fine, the 90% other is normal and mostly water.
    Get the PH and CC under control and then later you can use the muriatic acid and aerating to bring TA down.
    Mark
    IG plaster, 22,000 gallon, Jacuzzi Laser Sand filter

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Agreed that the 1.5 CC might be a sign of an issue. You could pay attention for any other signs of algae and SLAM if you're worried. Slamming is much easier and cheaper when the problem is small.

    You probably don't have any bromine in the pool. The blue box kit (yellow OTO test) measures Cl or Br as the same.

    In the longer term, you'll want to comparison shop for chlorine sources, taking the percentage of solution into account. See the "Bleach prices 2014" thread for ideas.

    As for whether to bring down CYA, others will help, but it's kind of a judgement call. I would leave it for now. If you have a lot of sun, the protection may be worth it, but if you need to SLAM it will cost somewhat more. It's not as high as some people have had!

    And welcome! I've found this place to be a great resource so far.
    18x36, 19k gal, IG Vinyl, Hayward s244t sand filter, 3/4HP Hayward pump

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    oh gosh, I missed the CC part...was focused on the TA. Thanks so much for the help.

    So if I retest and find out I DO need to slam, and use liquid chlorine, we're talking like 30+ bottles if I read right? So I literally have to walk into Ace or similar and buy like 30 bottles or do they have other/bigger % concentrations I should instead be looking at for slamming vs. normal pool maintenance?
    20K gal, IG plaster/pebble-sheen, dual pump - Intelliflo VS and 2 HP Whisperflo pump, DE Filter 60 Sqft Plus, Pentair Kreepy Racer Cleaner, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, spa, TF100, new pool (07/2014), Houston area

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    If CYA is 60, your SLAM FC target would be 24 ppm. To get from 0 to 24 FC on 10% bleach in a 24K gallon pool, you need 717 oz or 5.6 gallons of 10% bleach solution.

    Are you using pool math? http://www.troublefreepool.com/calc.html

    Are the bottles at ACE only quart size or something? If so, there might be a better deal somewhere. Grocery store or Walmart bleach is usually 6% or 8.25% (extra strength) and maybe $2-3 per gallon. Bleach and liquid chlorine are the same thing, only different concentrations. Just make sure there's nothing else in there like fragrance or thickener to prevent splashing.

    Also, it's probably best to fix pH first, since it doesn't read accurately while SLAMming. I'm not knowledgeable about plaster, but bringing calcium up is probably a good idea to do soon as well. Hopefully an expert will chime in.
    18x36, 19k gal, IG Vinyl, Hayward s244t sand filter, 3/4HP Hayward pump

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    with the high ta the ph is going to rise... as you continuously lower the ph the ta is going to drop as well...
    12k - free form - plaster- Nautilus fns48 DE filter- centurion 1hp (so quiet)- In floor cleaning system with Jandy Caretaker - TF-50 and 5 in 1 test kit, Phoenix, Az

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Quote Originally Posted by achianese View Post
    If CYA is 60, your SLAM FC target would be 24 ppm. To get from 0 to 24 FC on 10% bleach in a 24K gallon pool, you need 717 oz or 5.6 gallons of 10% bleach solution.

    Are you using pool math?
    I used pool math to get the number of oz. I would need, but then I used my own (wrong) math to convert that to # of bottles. So after re-doing my math, yea, you're right, I would need a lot less than I thought I would need....my wallet just sighed from relief as well as my arms for having to carry what I thought I was going to have to

    So this afternoon I will retest my FC/CC level and if it does need a slam will follow instructions here: http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...tain-shockingl

    Thanks again for the help
    20K gal, IG plaster/pebble-sheen, dual pump - Intelliflo VS and 2 HP Whisperflo pump, DE Filter 60 Sqft Plus, Pentair Kreepy Racer Cleaner, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, spa, TF100, new pool (07/2014), Houston area

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    yea, not sure what I did but my FC/CC was way off. I re-measured and my FC is 1 (yikes!) and CC is 0. Remaining measurements seem to be the same when I re-checked.

    So guess I will focus on the pH, Chlorine, and CH levels for now.
    20K gal, IG plaster/pebble-sheen, dual pump - Intelliflo VS and 2 HP Whisperflo pump, DE Filter 60 Sqft Plus, Pentair Kreepy Racer Cleaner, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, spa, TF100, new pool (07/2014), Houston area

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    definitely get your chlorine up. FC of 1 with CYA 60 won't keep the algae at bay for long if at all.
    12000 Gallon IG Plaster built 2/15/2014. Jandy 340 sg ft 127 gpm filter, Jandy 1 HP stealth pump. Circupool RJ-45 SWG (overkill). TF-100 with Speed Stir.

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Welcome to TFP!

    Quote Originally Posted by bdaddy View Post
    - what about calcium chloride - is there any trick to buying this that doesn't introduce unwanted chemicals? Will they have something at ACE that will get me what I need? (really worried about buying something like these "pucks" that unnecessarily raise other levels.
    Just a short note because this has not been addressed - calcium chloride is typically sold as hardness plus/ calcium hardness increaser. For members in colder climate we typically advise the use of de-icer (check ingredients first), but I don't think de-icer is that common in Texas.
    See also recommended pool chemicals and ABCs of pool water chemistry.

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Welcome!

    Don't add any CH, it's fine where it is for now. Any more and it will create a problem given your high TA and high pH. Get your pH down to at least 7.4, pronto.

    FC next.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
    The most important article on this site - The ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    OK, so after I cleaned up my 1st reading, I had this info in pool calculator
    CYA 50
    PH 8.2
    1 FC
    0 CC
    280 TA
    175 CH

    I put my pool as 20k (instead of the 24k that's in my signature as I think that may be more of what I have and I figured better low than high to start.) Based on that, I added the following last night:
    added 81 oz Muriatic Acid (wanted to shoot for 7.5 - based it on 20k pool)
    added 149 oz 10% bleach (wanted to shoot for 7 FC - based it on 20k pool)

    I checked this morning and got these readings:
    PH 7.8 (undershot)
    10 FC (way overshot)
    .5 CC (may have been .5 yesterday - very light pink and one drop clears it up)

    So since I'm still high on pH I added 51oz of Muriatic acid again this morning(all I had). Will pick up some more bottles of MA and check again at lunch I guess. Is the overshot on chlorine a big deal? Just focus on pH now I guess from the above messages?
    20K gal, IG plaster/pebble-sheen, dual pump - Intelliflo VS and 2 HP Whisperflo pump, DE Filter 60 Sqft Plus, Pentair Kreepy Racer Cleaner, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, spa, TF100, new pool (07/2014), Houston area

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Drop the Ph...

    If you find you have to slam and get calcium hardness up at the same time- I like to use granulated chlorine- much easier to put a measuring cup or two of that in the pool instead of a 5 gallons of bleach. But only if you need the calcium at the same time.
    45'x12' 17k gal, IG plaster, Pool Pilot Nano+ SWG, 1/2hp Whisperflo pump, PAC-FAB TA-60D sand filter, Raypak 266 heater
    Pool School + Test Kit + Pool Math = Trouble Free Pool

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Quote Originally Posted by zimm View Post
    Drop the Ph...

    If you find you have to slam and get calcium hardness up at the same time- I like to use granulated chlorine- much easier to put a measuring cup or two of that in the pool instead of a 5 gallons of bleach. But only if you need the calcium at the same time.
    And only is its a calcium based powder... make sure but to use the cya based powders
    12k - free form - plaster- Nautilus fns48 DE filter- centurion 1hp (so quiet)- In floor cleaning system with Jandy Caretaker - TF-50 and 5 in 1 test kit, Phoenix, Az

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Here's my update

    morning - added 51 oz Muriatic Acid
    lunch - added 60 oz Muriatic Acid

    Reading #4
    pH 7.5
    FC 7.5
    CC .5
    TA 260
    CH 150

    so my pH and chlorine seem OK now? CC is .5, is that OK? (it's a really light pink that 1 drop clears up, making .5 I guess).

    So should I now focus on lowering pH to 7.2, then aerating to get my TA down? Or work to up my CH level? Or both?
    20K gal, IG plaster/pebble-sheen, dual pump - Intelliflo VS and 2 HP Whisperflo pump, DE Filter 60 Sqft Plus, Pentair Kreepy Racer Cleaner, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, spa, TF100, new pool (07/2014), Houston area

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Apologies for the late reply....

    If the CCs clear up in one drop, consider it 0.

    As for the rest, you are in the rare situation where you have to closely watch your CSI. Right now, at a pH of 7.5, you are pretty much perfectly balanced. Your high TA is balancing out your slightly low CH. If you let your pH rise to 7.8, you're still balanced, but you're pushing the upper limit (I'm assuming a water temp of 80).

    My advice is this.....religiously keep your pH between 7.2 and 7.6, and everything else can slowly be adjusted to follow. Each acid addition to keep pH in range will slowly lower TA. As your TA falls, you can slowly raise your CH to keep your CSI near 0. I would avoid the aeration method to lower TA only because you don't want it to drop very fast.

    BTW, this conversation is wandering into advanced chemistry, so please ask questions if I lost you anywhere along the way.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
    The most important article on this site - The ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    And it goes without saying, watch FC like a hawk! Target 7-8, and never ever let it get below 5.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
    The most important article on this site - The ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Thanks for the replys. I'm not sure I follow why my CSI is a concern - from the poolMath my CSI comes out to .43, which is high but in range, right? (note I did lower my gallons to 20k because I'm finding that seems to be more accurate with my additions). Here's my latest updates from past 2 days:

    Reading #5 (Aug 1 - morning)
    pH 7.5
    FC 6
    CC 0

    25 oz 10% bleach
    78 oz 31.45% muriatic acid

    Reading #6 (Aug 1 - lunch)
    ph 7.2

    aerated for 2 hours

    Reading #6 (Aug 2 - morning)
    ph= 7.8
    FC= 4.5
    CC=0 (cleared in 1 drop)
    TA=180

    37 oz of 10% bleach (target of FC 6)
    85 oz of 31.45% muriatic acid (target of 7.2)
    20K gal, IG plaster/pebble-sheen, dual pump - Intelliflo VS and 2 HP Whisperflo pump, DE Filter 60 Sqft Plus, Pentair Kreepy Racer Cleaner, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, spa, TF100, new pool (07/2014), Houston area

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    CSI is always a concern in plaster pools. We usually tell people to ignore it, because if you keep all parameters within the TFP recommended ranges, the CSI will balance. In your case, with TA very high, if you brought everything else into the recommended range, your CSI would be too high.
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
    The most important article on this site - The ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

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    Re: New Pool - first testing and need feedback

    Have you done a TA test of your fill water? Mine is 140. Trying to lower it under your fill water level may not be worth it.
    Pool size: 24000gal inground Vinyl-Taylor k-2006 and k-1766 test kits and-speed stir
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