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Thread: Endless pool help?

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    Endless pool help?

    Hello all. This is my first post, but I've been reading and researching extensively on this site for the past week. We have a new Endless Pool which we purchased and had installed primarily for my husband, who has Parkinson's and other related movement disorders. It is indoors, in a sunroom built to house it. It was finally finished and filled about three weeks ago, and we have had nothing but trouble since then - primarily - I now believe - due to the pool store run-around. When the pool was filled, the water was crystal clear and beautiful, but with a pale yellow tinge. I took a sample to the pool store and they said the water had an iron count of 1.5 and a copper count of .2 and sent me home with Pool Magnet, Sparkle Up and powdered shock. Instructions were to shock the pool, wait 6 hours and then add Pool Magnet and put Sparkle Up in the filter. By the next morning our pool looked like it was filled with chocolate pudding, and since then it went through various colors, but we never saw the bottom again. Out of desperation, I finally drained it as far as allowed with an Endless Pool, and jury-rigged my own vacuum-to-waste system. (Somebody invent a real one please. Small submersible pump that connects to a hose and a long handled vac head. How hard is that? I will be your first customer!) Long story short, after basically taking everything in the pool apart, vacuuming every nook and cranny for days, and putting it all back together, we are in the process of refilling with a bobby filter on the hose, and so far we have crystal clear water with a pale, pale yellow tinge. I know we still have iron and copper and I want to make sure to handle it correctly this time. From what I have learned here, I will use only liquid chlorine, I will not be using the Nature2 cartridge in the filter, and I will not be adding anything to the water that is not absolutely necessary. I bought the full Taylor testing kit, plus a metals kit. So here are my questions:


    Do I sequester the metals before balancing the water?

    Will I need a filter aid (sparkle up. Fiber clear?) to get the metals out? I am worried about these because I suspect that Sparkle Up somehow found it's way into the pool and caused or at least contributed heavily to the cloudiness. In taking the pool apart, I noticed that there is a sort of bypass at the bottom of the filter cartridge housing whereby it seems that anything going into the filter is free to sneak back out into the pool if it wishes. Is this normal?

    Bottom line is, I'm terrified of putting anything into this pool that does not absolutely have to be there, but I do want to have actual real, clear, blue water. Can anyone help?
    New 4,500 gallon vinyl Endless Pool, Sta-rite PLD50 DE filter, indoor, heated. Well water with iron and copper.

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    Re: Endless pool help?

    What are the test results from your Taylor kit? Which kits did you get?

    You should confirm the pool store test results with your own testing. You might not have a metals problem.
    -------------------------------------------------------------
    15K Gallons, IG, Vinyl, 1HP Single Speed Pump, Sand, SWG, NG Heater + Solar Panels

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Endless pool help?

    You have learned that pool stores love to sell you stuff.

    As you refill the pool you are going to need to get a couple of things in the water.

    First is chlorine. Around here we like our chlorine straight - as in not mixed with other junk that can mess up the water. Straight chlorine is going to come in a liquid form. The most common is bleach, but you have to watch as household bleach comes in several strengths. if it doesn't list the strength on the label don't buy it. You want 8.25% household bleach. it is usually in a 121oz bottle and nowadays they call it concentrated. No flavors (lemon, lavender ect.) and no splash-less. I buy the generic stuff at WalMart, $2.98 a bottle. Now, understand a pool is like a living being. You need to feed it every day. Chlorine (bleach) is what you feed it.

    Next is CYA, which is also called stabilizer. With an indoor pool you may not need to worry about the effect of UV rays from the sun on the water (UV consumes chlorine, CYA protects the chlorine) but you do need to have CYA in the water to kind of moderate the harsh effects of chlorine on swimsuits & such. You want to have about 20ppm CYA in the water.

    If I understand the endless pool, it is a fiberglass unit? If so here are your target numbers:
    Fiberglass with Bleach
    FC 2 minimum 3 target 10 shock
    pH 7.5-7.8
    TA 70-90+
    CH 220-320
    CYA 20

    Now, with a sun room you may get sufficient sun light to change the numbers to closer to an outdoor pool, but we can worry about that later.

    With all these levels I've told you about you are going to ask, how do I figure them out? Well - you will need to pick up one of the recommended test kits. You say you bought the "Full Taylor Test Kit", but which one? To effectively practice the TFPC methods, the FAS/DPD chlorine test is essential. All the kits on the list contain that test while very few other kits do. The kits sold at the pool store generally won't won't cut it, but be careful pool store employees are known to say “it's the same thing”. Generally it's not! Tell us what you got by model number and we can recommend additions to the kit.

    If you have read around here much you have probably seen that not much credence is given to pool store testing. While you would think that a "professional" would be the best, unfortunately in most cases it is quite the opposite. Between employees who blindly trust the word of chemical sales representatives and high school kids working in the pool store for the summer you end up with poor results from their testing.

    With your test kit, and Pool Math you can easily figure what you need to add to the water to keep it nice.

    I'm not sure about the copper, but there are some hose end filters that will do a fair job of getting the iron out of the water as you fill the pool. It may be a slow fill, but with your small volume not beyond the realm of possibility. Here is more information from the Pool School about metals - I highlighted part for you(link above)
    There is no practical way to remove metals from the water short of replacing the water with new water that doesn't have any metals in it. If you have metals in the water you will need to use regular doses of a sequestrant to prevent the metals from forming stains. Sequestrants bind to the metals and prevent them from depositing as stains. Sequestrants slowly break down in the pool, so you need to add more regularly to maintain the correct level.

    Sequestrants based on HEDP, phosphonic acid, or phosphonic acid derivatives are the most effective. ProTeam's Metal Magic and Jack's Magic The Pink Stuff (regular), The Blue Stuff (fresh plaster), and The Purple Stuff (salt) are some of the top sequestrants. You can also find many other brands with similar active ingredients, some of which are noticeably less expensive.

    In rare cases metals can color the water a variety of colors, typically green or blue or yellow. When this happens the water will still be very clear and transparent. If the water is cloudy or murky it is very unlikely to have anything to do with metals in the water. If the coloring is from metals, lowering the PH slightly and adding sequestrant should remove the color.
    Ask away with teh questions and welcome to TFP!
    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: Endless pool help?

    That you so much for your quick replies! Our pool is vinyl. Sorry I forgot to put that in my signature. Have added it. My test kit is the Taylor K-1006, but after reading Pool School and many of the posts here, I also purchased Taylor K-1515-A (FAS-DPD test kit) and the LaMotte Insta-test for copper and iron. I have not tested the refill water yet because it is still filling. In fact, filling has come to a halt because I realized that I had not cleaned inside the return channels for the swim machine, so I am in the process of taking them apart and vacuuming them out. Will start refilling again later today. The liquid chlorine I am currently using is 12.5%. I picked up three bottles at a Namco going out of business sale. When they are gone I'll be using household bleach. Before I drained the pool, chlorine, ph and alkalinity were all in balance. I had added calcium because, despite the metals, our calcium hardness is very low. I now know I don't need calcium in a vinyl pool. Cyanuric acid was non-existent. The pool does get much sun. There are sliding glass doors all around the outside of the room but the roof is solid. I don't have any CYA, but I do have a stabilizer that I also picked up at the Namco sale. It contains CYA and sodium carbonate. Can I use that to add CYA? Should I be adding anything as the pool fills? Thanks again!
    New 4,500 gallon vinyl Endless Pool, Sta-rite PLD50 DE filter, indoor, heated. Well water with iron and copper.

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    Re: Endless pool help?

    Did you check the mfg date on the liquid chlorine? I'd be just a little suspicious of a going out if business sale.
    Pool size: 24000gal inground Vinyl-Taylor k-2006 and k-1766 test kits and-speed stir
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    Re: Endless pool help?

    Quote Originally Posted by JackieK View Post
    I don't have any CYA, but I do have a stabilizer that I also picked up at the Namco sale. It contains CYA and sodium carbonate. Can I use that to add CYA? Should I be adding anything as the pool fills? Thanks again!
    Sodium carbonate = washing soda = soda ash It will raise you pH. How much, I'm not sure as I don't know th % of each in the product.. If you use it be careful to monitor the pH so it doesn't raise too much. Others who have seen this may comment.
    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: Endless pool help?

    The chlorine seems to be fine. I used it to "slam" the pool before I gave up and decided to drain and refill. It brought the chlorine level right up to 10 and kept it there pretty easily for days. The pool is now filling again so I am back to my original questions. Once it's full, do I balance the water first and then sequester the metals, of do I seguester the metals before balancing? Also, with a cartridge filter will I have to use a filter aid like sparkle up or fiber clear to get the metals out? What are the chances of these additives going through the filter and getting into the pool? Thanks!
    New 4,500 gallon vinyl Endless Pool, Sta-rite PLD50 DE filter, indoor, heated. Well water with iron and copper.

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    Re: Endless pool help?

    Quote Originally Posted by JackieK View Post
    The chlorine seems to be fine. I used it to "slam" the pool before I gave up and decided to drain and refill. It brought the chlorine level right up to 10 and kept it there pretty easily for days. The pool is now filling again so I am back to my original questions. Once it's full, do I balance the water first and then sequester the metals, of do I seguester the metals before balancing? Also, with a cartridge filter will I have to use a filter aid like sparkle up or fiber clear to get the metals out? What are the chances of these additives going through the filter and getting into the pool? Thanks!
    Unless you can capture the metals using an external filter you will never get them out. The best you can hope for is to properly sequster them.

    If you are already filling then filtering is probably out of the picture as you would need to fitter the water as it goes in the pool. Look for sequestrants based on HEDP, phosphonic acid, or phosphonic acid derivatives are the most effective. ProTeam's Metal Magic and Jack's Magic The Pink Stuff (regular).

    Once you ge the pool filled go ahead and balance the water. I would still shoot low for the CYA until you get a feel for the chlorine appetite of the pool. If it seems high you can bring that up a bit. Ignore the CH, meaning don't add but do test. If the metals discolor the water or start to stain then it is time to add the sequestrant.
    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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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Endless pool help?

    I see in your sig that you're on a well. Given that you should add sequestrant first and then slowly add chlorine to about 2ppm. Then I'd add just enough CYA to get to about 20ppm since this is an indoor pool.

    Since you bought the CYA at a going out of business sale I doubt that you can return it. How much did you buy? You only need about 12 oz. The stabilizer you bough has the carbonate in it to buffer the CYA from lowering the pH much.

    What is the pH of the fill water?
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Endless pool help?

    Pool nearly full. Here are the raw, untreated water numbers:

    Chlorine: 0
    PH: way south of 6.8 (yellow/green in test tube)
    Alkalinity: less than 10 (sample turned red with first drop)
    Calcium hardness: 70
    CYA: 0
    Copper: somewhere between .6 and 1
    Iron: slightly over 1

    Visual of water - beautiful blue but not sparkling - just slightly hazy.

    Suggestions as to how best to proceed once pool is full and filter is running?
    New 4,500 gallon vinyl Endless Pool, Sta-rite PLD50 DE filter, indoor, heated. Well water with iron and copper.

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    Re: Endless pool help?

    I' going to yeild to greater knowledge

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler View Post
    Given that you should add sequestrant first and then slowly add chlorine to about 2ppm. Then I'd add just enough CYA to get to about 20ppm since this is an indoor pool.
    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: Endless pool help?

    The first thing to do is get the pH and TA up a little. I'd add about 3 lbs of baking soda and about a lb of 20 mule team borax. That should get you in the ball park.

    If you don't have the ingredients above go ahead and add 1 cup of bleach (liquid chlorine) and the recommended dose of sequestrant, then go get the baking soda and borax and add it.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Endless pool help?

    Pool full. Filter running. Added 3 lbs baking soda and 1 lb borax, 16 oz metal magic, and 1 cup bleach. Circulating about 3 hours.

    Numbers:
    Chl: negligible
    Ph: still south of 6.8
    Alk: 30
    Ch: 60
    Cya: 0 (I did buy some pure cya so it won't be complicated by other ingredients
    Copper: .3 -.6
    Iron: 1

    Visual of water: slightly hazy, lovely Carribean blue (probably not quite right for Massachusetts though).

    Where to go from here? Thanks!
    New 4,500 gallon vinyl Endless Pool, Sta-rite PLD50 DE filter, indoor, heated. Well water with iron and copper.

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    Re: Endless pool help?

    Calculate how much CYA you will need and put about 1/2 to 3/4 the amout Pool Math says you need in a sock. Suspend this in front of a return and let it dissolve. You don;t want to over shoot so add CYA in stages. You will not be able to re-test for CYA until about a week passes as it does not show up until then. Assume you have the target amount of CYA in the water for your chlorine additions.

    Lets get some bleach/chlorine in there and you will need ore borax to get that pH up.
    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: Endless pool help?

    Add another cup of chlorine.

    Repeat the baking soda / Borax treatment.

    Be aware that CYA (stabilizer) can take a week to properly register on the test. So don't add more or bother testing that for a few days.

    -Denny
    IG gunite 20k Gal (estimate), Nautilus NS-60 filter (D.E.), Single speed pump (unreadable nameplate - assume 1HP) on a crappy mechanical timer.
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    Re: Endless pool help?

    Not to muddy the waters for the OP but I would quit it with the borax for now. The pH and TA are so low that you'd have an easier time getting both those numbers up using straight baking soda. While it is true that borax will raise the pH without adding much to TA, borates convert to boric acid which also buffers against rising pH (as opposed to carbonates which buffer against falling pH). In this particular situation, you'd get better bang for your buck using baking soda alone to raise pH and TA.

    Of course, this is a lot like like four mechanics standing around the stranded motorist changing a flat tire on a car, we've got four different opinions about how to properly tighten the lug nuts

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    Re: Endless pool help?

    Quote Originally Posted by SunnyOptimism View Post
    Of course, this is a lot like like four mechanics standing around the stranded motorist changing a flat tire on a car, we've got four different opinions about how to properly tighten the lug nuts
    I've had similar thoughts on several threads.....
    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: Endless pool help?

    Quote Originally Posted by SunnyOptimism View Post
    While it is true that borax will raise the pH without adding much to TA, borates convert to boric acid which also buffers against rising pH (as opposed to carbonates which buffer against falling pH)
    Now there's a subtlety I didn't know. Learn something new every day.

    OK, disregard the more borax suggestion. But more chlorine for sure. And definitely be careful with the CYA as it takes quite a while to show on the tests.


    Oh, and I think the lug nuts should be tightened clockwise.
    IG gunite 20k Gal (estimate), Nautilus NS-60 filter (D.E.), Single speed pump (unreadable nameplate - assume 1HP) on a crappy mechanical timer.
    And a worn-out Kreepy Kraully. TF-100.

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    Re: Endless pool help?

    I personally think you should tighten one lug nut on each wheel even if the other three wheels are already tight!

    Sunny -- I told her to add both Borax and Baking soda initially because both the pH and the TA were low. She could have added washing soda, but normally washing soda is harder to find than borax and baking soda. I also chose not to throw the chemistry at her in order to keep any confusion down.


    Jackie -- Once you get the pH and TA to a reasonable level then we'll start fine tuning the additions. I tend to agree about only using baking soda for now. Go ahead and add another 2 lbs of baking soda and lets see where that gets you.

    Go ahead and get a little more FC in there.

    You're probably going to need to add some more sequestrant, but hold off on that until you get it better balanced.

    In the short term you're going to be fighting several things to get the pool balanced so if you get confused about what to do just post here and we'll try to help.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Endless pool help?

    Okay, I did the sock with half recommended amount CYA.also added 2 more lbs baking soda, and another cup chlorine. Mid afternoon numbers:

    Chl: 3
    Ph: still south of 6.8
    Alk: 80
    Copper: .6
    Iron: 1
    Didn't measure calcium hardness.

    Visual of water, still slightly hazy. More green now than blue.

    What lug nut do we attack next? Thanks!
    New 4,500 gallon vinyl Endless Pool, Sta-rite PLD50 DE filter, indoor, heated. Well water with iron and copper.

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