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Thread: Clearing our swamp

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    Clearing our swamp

    Hello,
    We bought a house last fall with a pool that hasn't been taken care of in over a year. I've been following the steps outlined on the forum for clearing a swampy pool. We are on day 3, pool is now a light minty green and hasn't changed much in appearance in the last 24 hrs.

    Here are the latest test results taken today after sunset:
    FC: 8.5 (added 2 qts, 3 oz bleach as per pool math to return it to shock level (10)
    CC: 5
    TC: 13.5
    CH: 225
    TA: 90
    CYA:0 had this confirmed at a pool store (put stabilizer in a sock in skimmer on the 1st day)
    PH: 7.1

    We took the whole filter apart before adding any chemicals and did a 3 hr soak in TSP. Been backwashing 2-3 times a day since then.

    My question is.....
    Should I been seeing more improvement in my water? Am I doing the right things?
    Thank you, nervous 1st time pool owner
    Sara
    30,000 gal IG Plaster '93
    DE system:3 (S8D110)
    Pentair Superflo 2 speed
    TF-100

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    Hi, welcome to TFP! The first few days it may look like progress has stalled, but as long as you are raising the FC back to shock level several times a day you will be making progress. Taking a picture of the top step of the pool around the same time every day helps to show progress when you look at them in sequence.

    I have a couple of questions for you so we can know a little more about your pool. We recommend you add enough CYA to reach 20ppm during your slam. How much CYA have you added so far? Have you been needing to backwash the filter that often due to diminished return flow or 20% increase in pressure from the starting pressure just after the last cleaning? Are you adding a full charge of DE after each backwash?
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    Thank you for the reply Zea3. Taking pictures of the step is a good one thanks. I added 64 oz (vol) of stabilizer, slightly less than the pool math said. I put it in two of my husbands cottons socks not realizing until tonight "skimmer socks" existed. Will go buy a nylon one tomorrow.

    Yes I am back washing for both reasons. Immediately after cleaning my psi was 10 and return flo is very visible on the surface. Within a hour or so Psi is always up to 21-23. Never over 23. And flo is not easily seen on the surface. I've only been adding 2 scoops of de after a backwash. Too little?

    I appreciate the help.

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    Glad to be able to help! You should recharge with about 80% of a full charge of DE after each backwash. Insufficient DE coat can cause increased pressure according to the owner's manual. Your DE filter holds about 5 1/2 lbs of DE. A 1 pound coffee can holds about 1/2 pound of DE, so 2 scoops is too little to recharge your filter. The DE scoops you can get at the pool store are about the size of a 1 lb coffee can. Backwash and add about 8 scoops of DE and see if you are able to go longer between recharges.

    A cotton sock is fine for adding DE to the pool. Just give it a good squeeze or 2 a few times a day to speed up the dissolving process. You don't have to run out and by a skimmer sock unless you just want one.
    TFP Moderator
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    Quote Originally Posted by zea3 View Post
    Glad to be able to help! You should recharge with about 80% of a full charge of DE after each backwash. Insufficient DE coat can cause increased pressure according to the owner's manual. Your DE filter holds about 5 1/2 lbs of DE. A 1 pound coffee can holds about 1/2 pound of DE, so 2 scoops is too little to recharge your filter. The DE scoops you can get at the pool store are about the size of a 1 lb coffee can. Backwash and add about 8 scoops of DE and see if you are able to go longer between recharges.

    A cotton sock is fine for adding DE to the pool. Just give it a good squeeze or 2 a few times a day to speed up the dissolving process. You don't have to run out and by a skimmer sock unless you just want one.
    She means adding CYA, not DE.

    Have you removed as much organic debris as possible. even if it means leaf raking and vacuuming blind? That helps a lot.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    Good info. I am using a de scoop from the pool store so in the morning I'll use the amount you suggest after back washing! Thanks so much!!


    Sara
    30,000 gal IG Plaster '93
    DE system:3 (S8D110)
    Pentair Superflo 2 speed
    TF-100

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    The DE scoops are notoriously bad at measuring DE. I find that the DE in the scoop can weigh anywhere from .7 to 1 pound depending on how packed it is. Best to fill it up loosely and measure what it actually holds.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    The DE scoops are notoriously bad at measuring DE. I find that the DE in the scoop can weigh anywhere from .7 to 1 pound depending on how packed it is. Best to fill it up loosely and measure what it actually holds.
    I have a small kitchen scale so I'll weigh it just to be sure. Thanks!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320 View Post
    She means adding CYA, not DE.

    Have you removed as much organic debris as possible. even if it means leaf raking and vacuuming blind? That helps a lot.
    We have been removing debris with a leaf rake, what a chore when you can't see anything. And we don't own a vacuum but thanks for the reminder to start researching them.

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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    For large amounts of debris, manual scooping out is the best way. A whole lot like that will plug off your pump immediately if you were to vacuum.
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    I back washed this morning and weighed the de before replacing. Good thing because each scoop was alittle over 1 lb! Thank you Jason for mentioning how off the DE scoop can be. I put 80% in (4.24 lbs). After 2 hrs my psi is 16 and the return flo looks much better! You guys are so helpful!!! Thank you!
    Last edited by mrswilson; 03-10-2015 at 01:45 PM. Reason: Grammer

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    Clearing our swamp

    So today is day 9.....I don't feel like the water has cleared much the last two days the FC levels are holding pretty good. Only having to add bleach once or twice per day. Below are results from testing this morning:
    FC: 16
    CC: 3.5
    CH: 200
    TA: 110
    CYA: 23 (have stabilizer in socks in the skimmers)
    PH: 7.2

    I am backwashing about 3-4 times per day when the psi increases by 10. Then recharging with 4.24 lbs of DE.

    Here is the pool before I started:


    Here it is on day 9.


    So I guess I was expecting the pool to clear up faster and I am discouraged that I still can't see the bottom. Am I just being impatient? Should I try vacuuming it blind to waste? Is there anything else I can do?
    Thanks in advance.


    Sara
    30,000 gal IG Plaster '93
    DE system:3 (S8D110)
    Pentair Superflo 2 speed
    TF-100

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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    For as dark and evil looking as it was, I'd say you're doing pretty good.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    I just discovered that 1 of my eyeball return thingys is not moving any water even when I've just back washed and the flo in all the other returns are at the highest. Any ideas? And another eyeball right near the clogged one is barely flowing at all???? I believe I they all working yesterday.


    Sara
    30,000 gal IG Plaster '93
    DE system:3 (S8D110)
    Pentair Superflo 2 speed
    TF-100

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    You sure it is an actual return jet that is attached to the same plumbing? Some pools have eyeballs in the auto-fill port. Or have a dedicated line to a single port for a cleaner.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Clearing our swamp

    Yes, I believe so....my husband plugged another return jet with his hand in the deep end of the pool and a few small bubbles came out of of the clogged one.


    Sara
    30,000 gal IG Plaster '93
    DE system:3 (S8D110)
    Pentair Superflo 2 speed
    TF-100

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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    I'll just chime in that it seems to me you're doing quite well. It takes a couple of weeks sometimes when they are bad, and this one was pretty dark.

    If you think there might be a lot of debris on the bottom, try another round at scooping. If there is much, it will fill your pump basket pretty quickly so keep an eye on it if you vac to waste.
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    Yes it was pretty dark. The house we bought had been vacant for over a year so I doubt the pool had been touched in like two years.

    We scoop and brush every night. Not getting hardly anything up when scooping anymore so that's why I was considering vacuuming.


    Sara
    30,000 gal IG Plaster '93
    DE system:3 (S8D110)
    Pentair Superflo 2 speed
    TF-100

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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    So my husband went out and covered a few more of the eyeballs. We have 7 in our pool. The one furthered the from the pump was not flowing until we plugged a few other ones, then it started flowing just fine to so guess it's not plugged, just doesn't get enough pressure Anyway to increase its flo?


    Sara
    30,000 gal IG Plaster '93
    DE system:3 (S8D110)
    Pentair Superflo 2 speed
    TF-100

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    Sorry I don't remember, but did you clean the DE grids?

    Are you sure you're putting in the right amount of DE, and not too much?

    Perhaps you're filter is fouling quickly with the SLAM going on.

    All these can contribute to flow issues, just thinking of the simplest reasons first.
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Clearing our swamp

    That is a good point, if you do not know the history of the DE filter. I would highly recommend you pull it apart and clean everything very well. A full tear down should be done about once a year anyway.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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