I have been reading posts on this site for the last two years ever since I bought a house with a pool. The posts I have read have been so thorough, I have never even had to post a question here. There have been a few algae blooms in the pool, but I have cleared them up by vacuuming to waste, adding DE to the filter, and a lot of brushing. I have been a fan of the TFP method but haven't adopted all of it's parts completely, but have stopped using pool shock, algaecide, and everything else except for chlorine tabs for the last 6 months... I figured chlorine tabs are easy to store and use...
A few weeks ago I bought some 8.6% Clorox from Sam's "in case" I wanted to shock the pool. Well coincidentally, it looks like I finally hit the point where I have too much CYA in the pool from stabilized pucks and am quitting the chlorine pucks.
I haven't had any major chemistry problems, and have done my own testing with a PAP 5-Way kit, (never had a reason to buy the TF100) and once in awhile I have them test my water, basically just to make me feel good because they always say the water is inline. I save all the printouts that they have given me. Sometime ago, I got a free pack of 6-way test strips but never even opened the package because I figured they were about useless.
There was a pretty big algae bloom that I have been fighting for about a week and started using the test strips as a quick test in between when I am using the 5-way. The test strips had a CYA test, which my cheap 5-way kit does not, and I noticed that the stabilizer was showing high. I looked back on all my PAP printouts and noticed that every time I have had my water tested at PAP for the last 2 years, the stabilzer level ON THE PRINTOUT has been exactly the same - 100 ppm. Since it never changed according to them and haven't had any problems, I never really cared to test for it.
I haven't had to really consider CYA since during the summer it rains a lot in FL and I backwash often. Since I now know I have too much stabilizer, to correct the CYA level, first, I removed all the tabs that were in the pool and bleach shocked the pool. Since the algae didn't seem to be dying, I drained some water, added fresh water and shocked with bleach. My CYA level is between 150-200 ppm. (I know, I know, TF100 test kit.)My TC level now is about 8 ppm (I know, I know, TF100 test kit.) and I really don't want to keep adding bleach if I have to keep draining water to get rid of the stabilizer. I am thinking the easiest way is to drain some everyday, then add more water, then keep draining until the stabilizer level comes down and the FC level is enough to kill the algae. I am going to continue to do this until I get the algae cleared. Does this seem like the easiest way?
I did not post my exact numbers because I know that responses are going to say to get a better test kit, but I don't have the test kit right now and once my stabilizer levels drop enough, I should start noticing that the FC level is high enough to start killing algae, right?
I do not think this is mustard algae, but a result of me pressure washing the pool deck. Usually after pressure washing the pool deck, I have an algae bloom.
I am now suspect of the testing methods that PAP uses to test for stabilzer. Does the test they run max out at 100 ppm? Or do they only enter a max value of 100 regardless of what the test results are?
Sorry if this post seems rambling! Any responses are welcome! I now see the reason for doing more than TC, pH, TA, and Acid Demand tests... If PAP tests showed that my stabilizer levels ever changed, I would have started testing for it a long time ago, but I trusted them just enough to make me not think about testing for it myself.