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Thread: Worried about my process for closing, and ammonia when opening

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    steveg_nh's Avatar
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    Worried about my process for closing, and ammonia when opening

    I've been reading a ton of threads about people opening their pools to find ammonia, and 0 FC. I always thought 0 FC was to be expected, which is why the adage, "Open early, close late" existed, basically meaning that algae can't grow at less than 60 degrees. So with that understanding, I didn't think adding chlorine over the winter was needed. I mean for me, right now, my pool is under 4' of snow anyway, so even if I wanted to, it would be a nightmare of a project to get any in there. Plus, I have to believe I have at least 6" of ice in the pool. Maybe not, but I'm thinking there's something.

    Anyway, are there other factors that contribute to the transition and introduction of ammonia? I read about it being the byproduct of something that might consume CYA. When my pool was closed, by the pool guy, my CYA was about 60. The previous year (when it was installed late in the season) it was probably 10 or less. I had no issue when it was opened last spring, and am hoping I won't have an issue this year when I open it. My father in law, whose had inground pools as long as I've known him (20+ years) has never talked about a problem with ammonia.

    Is it less common than I think it is, and should I be doing something different than just bringing pool FC levels way up before closing, draining, and then winterizing for freezing?

    There's tons of threads, but since for me it way too late (can't do anything till I open it anyway), I'm just trying to put my mind at ease.

    Thanks
    24'x40' 25k gal Imperial Mountain Pond IGP, full 28 mil VynAll Ocean Breakers liner. All Hayward system: 140k BTU HeatPro heat pump, 3/4HP single speed TriStar 2" Pump, DE6020 filter, AquaPlus Automation/Salt Chlorination, remote controls, ColorLogic 4.0 lighting. Polaris 280 w/PB4-60 BP. TF100 & K1766 test kits. Rinox Palazzo pavers and Spherik coping. Pool installed 9/2013, project completed 6/16/14.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Worried about my process for closing, and ammonia when opening

    Close late, open early, and don't worry about it. Ammonia on opening isn't very common, and is usually associated with pools that went totally green over the winter. It has occurred in other situations, but that is far less common.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Worried about my process for closing, and ammonia when opening

    I am not sure I recall seeing where people with a winterized pool are adding chlorine in the winter. If you follow the closing procedure (as described in Pool School) and do it when the water is cold enough, and then open early enough, there will very likely be some FC left in the water.

    The conversion to ammonia is likely much less common than you think.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    steveg_nh's Avatar
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    Re: Worried about my process for closing, and ammonia when opening

    Whew! Thanks. I feel better now. Now if I could only melt the 3' of snow in my yard and get on to it!
    24'x40' 25k gal Imperial Mountain Pond IGP, full 28 mil VynAll Ocean Breakers liner. All Hayward system: 140k BTU HeatPro heat pump, 3/4HP single speed TriStar 2" Pump, DE6020 filter, AquaPlus Automation/Salt Chlorination, remote controls, ColorLogic 4.0 lighting. Polaris 280 w/PB4-60 BP. TF100 & K1766 test kits. Rinox Palazzo pavers and Spherik coping. Pool installed 9/2013, project completed 6/16/14.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Worried about my process for closing, and ammonia when opening

    Even if you do get ammonia ... it is not a mystery (did the CYA drop to nothing? Is the FC 0? When you add chlorine does the FC drop back to 0 fast, but the CC seem to rise?) and can be fixed in a couple days.

    The frustration comes when you are trusting a pool store for testing and advice and they are having you throw $100 of stuff in the pool and yet there is never a FC reading and eventually they tell you to drain it.
    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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    steveg_nh's Avatar
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    Re: Worried about my process for closing, and ammonia when opening

    Pool store. blah! Never.
    24'x40' 25k gal Imperial Mountain Pond IGP, full 28 mil VynAll Ocean Breakers liner. All Hayward system: 140k BTU HeatPro heat pump, 3/4HP single speed TriStar 2" Pump, DE6020 filter, AquaPlus Automation/Salt Chlorination, remote controls, ColorLogic 4.0 lighting. Polaris 280 w/PB4-60 BP. TF100 & K1766 test kits. Rinox Palazzo pavers and Spherik coping. Pool installed 9/2013, project completed 6/16/14.

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