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Thread: First Test - Help!

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    First Test - Help!

    This is my first post. i have been caring for our pool for 16 years, blindly following the advise of our local pool store until my neighbor suggested I check out the Trouble Free Pool site. I just tested my water for the first time with my new Taylor K-2006 test kit. These are my results:

    C.C. - 0
    F.C. - 8
    CYA - 200 (I had to dilute my sample with half tap water and multiply my result by 2 to come up with that number as suggested in other forms)
    P.H. - 7.7
    T.A. - 130
    C.H. - 750

    I have not added anything to my pool for about 10 days, that was when I added the last of my pool store granular chlorine, pucks, and phos-free. I want to switch to the Trouble Free system, but I am not sure where to start. I know the first step would probably be to lower the CYA, but I am afraid that that will involve renting a pump to drain at least half of my pool water (the last time our pool was drained completely was in April of 2009 when it was re-plastered). On some forums it mentioned that draining a pool in warm, sunny weather was not a good idea (we live in Texas and are heading into our hot months). Should I wait until the fall? What should I do in the mean time?

    I have never had any problems maintaining the chlorine, PH, and Alkalinity levels using my small pool store test kit. Our water is generally crystal clear, but I sometimes get a little bit of yellow algae on the walls on one side of the pool. I have some there now. The algae always goes away when I shock and brush the walls.
    22,000 gal Gunite/plaster in-ground pool, 1 1/2 HP Century Pump, Nautilus DE Filter, Polaris Cleaner, Taylor K-2006 Test Kit.

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: First Test - Help!

    You may need to do a three to one dilution if you came up with 100 the second time.

    Even at 200 you need to bring the FC up to around 17 for normal operation.

    You think the algae goes away, but it really doesn't - it keeps coming back. The only way to get rid of it is to SLAM the pool, and with CYA above 200 that will take a lot of bleach.

    Get some more chlorine in there now to keep from having a full blown bloom. Look,for a nearby HASA dealer for higher % chlorine or use bleach. No more solid chlorine at all.

    Now, back to your CYA issue, now would be better to drain and refill, but you need to do the three to one diluted test to see if/how far you are above 200. That will determine how much water you need to get rid of. Don't get sidetracked by friends who may suggest algecide or other magic potions. Lower CYA and lots of chlorine are what it is going to take to clear up your pool and keep it that way.
    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 pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: First Test - Help!

    Hi, welcome to TFP!

    Here is a start, TFPC for Beginners.

    And you need to do the extended test again only doubled again because cya is probably above 200, http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...Kit-Directions

    It is not too hot to drain and refill. Which definitely needs to be getting on your agenda soon. The only question is how much. More than half. You can go ahead and do half now if you want to.
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    Re: First Test - Help!

    With a CH of 750 (should be 250-400), that is even more reason to drain/refill a portion of your pool. Can you test and report the CH of your fill water?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: First Test - Help!

    Here is a link to start reading up on SLAMing Your Pool.
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    Re: First Test - Help!

    Could someone be more specific on how to do the three to one dilution, or extended cya test? (Sorry, I am new at this and have not read about this step on any of the forums or articles). I am assuming this is going to give me a more accurate reading than the 1/4 tap water, 1/4 pool water, 1/2 regent (results multiplied by 2) test I did, so I want to make sure I do it right. I have already thrown out my preivous mixture, so I will have to start from scratch.

    Is there an advantage to using the higher percent chlorine other than you use less of it? I searched and found a HASA dealer about 30 minutes from my house, but it is more convenient just to go the the grocery store and get bleach unless you think the liquid chlorine would be better for my pool.

    I am aware that my CH is too high. I will test the CH of my fill water and post the results tomorrow.

    Thanks so much for all of your help. This is all a little overwhelming at first.
    22,000 gal Gunite/plaster in-ground pool, 1 1/2 HP Century Pump, Nautilus DE Filter, Polaris Cleaner, Taylor K-2006 Test Kit.

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: First Test - Help!

    Rather than continuing to try to dilute the test for CYA it is better to just go ahead and drain about 50% of the pool and refill and test from there. Partial draining of the pool is unavoidable at this point.

    You are correct about chlorine, the only advantage is using less of it. And convenience is worth it. We use kroger brand concentrated bleach, which is 8.25%. Be sure it is unscented and NOT easy pour.

    Yes, there is a bit of a learning curve for pool maintenance, but once you learn the lingo it is really very simple and easy. Keep reading and asking questions and it will all come together soon.
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: First Test - Help!

    I second pooldv on the extended dilution. You know you are over 100, and will have to drain to reduce it. Dilution reduces accuracy not only by nature, but by opening you up to more potential for testing errors. Drain no more than 50% of the pool at once. You may have to do that again, or at least another partial. Simply retest when you are done and the pool has circulated for a few hours, and go from there.
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