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Thread: Would like to check a couple of things please

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    Would like to check a couple of things please

    We acquired a spa from a neighbor, cobbling together a few bits and pieces to make it work again. I'm slowly getting the hang of things in terms of chemicals but just wanted to check/ask a couple of things please.

    Firstly my pH level tended to hover around 7.2 until I used pH Up. The alkalinity also went up, to nearly 180ppm, but is now down to 150 about 3 days later, but the pH is also down to around 7.2-7.3. I know 7.2 is at the low end of the scale but still okayish, but 180ppm is too high - but is that anything to worry about? Maybe if I can get pH to 7.3 and alkalinity to not exceed 150...?

    Secondly, it says on the #2 spa chlorine I should shock the spa after every use (well, maybe more than just a quick dip). If I do this I can get the chlorine levels to 5ppm - but last time I did that it took a good 36 hours to come down to 3ppm, a safer swimming level. Obviously I don't want extended waiting periods like this! I wasn't sure if the cover should be on or off during this time, or if even if it would make a difference.

    Thirdly, I have both Shock Plus and Oxidising Shock (different active ingredients). Both say to use after every spa use and once a week. Both list their features but I'm not sure which I should be using - for example, is one better for cloudy water while the other is better for foam/algae/whatever? I don't think I should use both, at least at the same time?

    Finally, I know you shouldn't add more than one chemical at a time, and I think I read here that about an hour between doses should be ok. That's fine as I can adjust pH/alkalinity/chlorine at other times. But can I add #2 spa chlorine within minutes of #3 shock (reason being those would be added after use, while we're dripping wet and cold!).

    Many thanks.

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    Re: Would like to check a couple of things please

    We have had 3 hot tubs in the past and have our 4th right now. Similar story on this one. Had a friend that chased chemicals around (like you seem to be). One of the pumps went out and he was done with it.

    I have tried chlorine, bromine, floaters you name it. Ever since we started using Nature 2 we have used nothing else. Just really easy to use. My pool is SWG and I may at some point go SWG on the spa.

    But to answer your question I adjust my Ph and TA in the tub with baking soda, MA and Borax. Easier to control independently and cheaper than Ph up and down. As far as shocking after each use, yes you should.

    I use a non chlorine shock because of the nature 2 sticks. But what you have basically does the same thing and in a chlorine spa will not much matter as far as I am aware.


    30x20 vinyl IG, Hayward SD60 with Pentair Dynamo 340219 2HP pump, Compupool CPSC24 SWG, Hayward H200FDN heater. APC automatic pool cover.
    Central Illinois

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to check a couple of things please

    Welcome to TFP!

    TA needs to be lowered, the link below describes how. Chlorine and shock should be the same thing, so would be fine to add together. Read the fine print on the ingredients to see.

    On adding chemicals, if you know how much you are adding and why then turn the pump on high and wait 10 minutes in between. If you need to test wait 30 min with pump on low.

    You need to add 20-30ppm CYA/stabilizer if you don't have any in the tub and 50ppm borate.

    TFPC is all about testing your water and adding what the test results indicate. Order a TF100 from tftestkits.net and while you are waiting for it to arrive read the article below 10 or 20 times. I've been maintaining my tub this way for a year and a half. It works great!

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...-Spa-(or-pool)
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to check a couple of things please

    We add about 1/8th cup of 8.25% bleach per bather hour after we get out. The correct amount of chlorine to add after a soak is the amount that gives you 2-3ppm residual in the tub the next day or two. We have never shocked our tub in a year and a half, I drained it after about 10 months just because it seemed like it was time. It didn't really need it.
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    Re: Would like to check a couple of things please

    Quote Originally Posted by bdex View Post
    Had a friend that chased chemicals around (like you seem to be).
    Well, a little to begin with, but the last few weeks have been relatively stable - just that curious high TA while lowish pH.

    Quote Originally Posted by bdex View Post
    But to answer your question I adjust my Ph and TA in the tub with baking soda, MA and Borax. Easier to control independently and cheaper than Ph up and down. As far as shocking after each use, yes you should.
    I have used baking soda - might have been here I read it! But also used pH up. I guess if they do the same thing then I'll stick to baking soda for new purchases!

    Quote Originally Posted by pooldv View Post
    On adding chemicals, if you know how much you are adding and why then turn the pump on high and wait 10 minutes in between. If you need to test wait 30 min with pump on low.
    Oh that reminds me - the various instructions say to have the pump running while adding and for some time after, but it doesn't say, for example, low pump for 6 hours or high pump for 3 hours. Generally I've been doing high for a few hours and then, inevitably, it's cooled off a bit so the low pump runs with the heater for a few hours.

    Quote Originally Posted by pooldv View Post
    TFPC is all about testing your water and adding what the test results indicate. Order a TF100 from tftestkits.net and while you are waiting for it to arrive read the article below 10 or 20 times. I've been maintaining my tub this way for a year and a half. It works great!
    I have a 5-bottle drop test kit - 3 main tests plus a calculator thing for raising acidity (IIRC - I've never needed that test!). The thing I'm not testing and almost certainly should is calcium which this doesn't do. We live in a hard water area (city water which comes from underground aquifers as I understand it).

    Quote Originally Posted by pooldv View Post
    We add about 1/8th cup of 8.25% bleach per bather hour after we get out. The correct amount of chlorine to add after a soak is the amount that gives you 2-3ppm residual in the tub the next day or two. We have never shocked our tub in a year and a half, I drained it after about 10 months just because it seemed like it was time. It didn't really need it.
    Just to make sure I understand that correctly, what I'm aiming for is a reading of 2-3ppm 24-48 hours after shocking? So if the level is =>4ppm after 48 hours then I've put too much shock in? Sorry - that sounds a really dumb question

    One more question: do you measure dry ingredients by volume, eg measuring cups, rather than by weight? Close enough approximation, right?! (Quick story: I'm a Brit in the US, bought scales from CVS and was asked why I wanted them. Said for measuring ingredients, why else would I want it?! Cashier gave me a strange look. A few days later I found out why: most of their customers buying scales do it for drugs, not necessarily of the legal kind . In the UK cooking - or at least baking - is done mostly by weight, not "cups" or otherwise, so this was news to me!).

    Thanks everyone. Anything I didn't comment on I've read and noted, much appreciated.
    Last edited by GeoffM; 04-24-2015 at 11:37 PM. Reason: More detail

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to check a couple of things please

    No dumb questions. Yes is the answer. Good pool and hot tub maintenance is all about maintaining minimum chlorine levels as a basis for success. All the other chemistry facilitates that and keeps the water comfortable.

    If you memorize this article you will have a great hot tub!
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...-Spa-(or-pool)

    - - - Updated - - -

    But, once you add 30ppm of CYA to your tub it is safe and comfortable to get in the tub with FC anywhere from 2-11ppm. It is safe to swim anytime the water is clear and the FC is above the min and below the shock level for your CYA level as shown in this chart, Chlorine CYA Chart
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