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Thread: New pool owner can't get the chemicals right--and rain ain't helping

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    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Austin, TX

    New pool owner can't get the chemicals right--and rain ain't helping

    A bunch of friends/neighbors seem like we all put pools in this spring, and one friend told be about this website.

    Naturally, the pool guy associated with the builder supposedly set everything up perfect--then we got a bunch of rain and our readings are off the deep end in a bad way.

    Using AquaChek strips to test so trying to match the color as best we can, but current readings as of this morning appear to be:

    pH 8.4
    FC 0.0
    Alkalinity 80
    CYA 0

    What is driving us crazy is we can't seem to budge the numbers. Added 4 lbs of HDX "shock" (trichlor) over the past day and FC has not moved. After reading this website, scared to death of CYA and causing an unrecoverable chem level. So as new pool owners we're clearly out of our element and don't know what to do.

    Any, ANY advice for a rookie pool family?

    22K gallon IG plaster w/pebble-tech; Pentair cartridge filter; Pentair variable speed pump; Chlor-tab system; UV sanitation; built Spring 2015

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Mod Squad woodyp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    East Texas

    Re: New pool owner can't get the chemicals right--and rain ain't helping

    Welcome to the forum. Don't panic! Use muriatic acid to lower your PH first-----see PoolMath to tell you how much to add. Then bring your FC to 4 or 5 using plain old bleach. Do yourself a long term favor and order one of the test kits we recommend in pool school. Test strips are notoriously inaccurate. Any CYA additions can take up to a week to register on a test. However much you add-just assume it is there and maintain your FC appropriately for that level using our FC/CYA chart in pool school. With CYA of zero, I would recommend you add enough using the Walmart brand of stabilizer to bring it to 40 to 50 to start to protect your FC.
    16x32x52" Steel Cornelius Miramar AGP Vinyl liner 13,100 gal. Buried 2 ft.
    2 Speed Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 85 g.p.m. 22" 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Pool Rover Jr., Pool Blaster Max, Diver Dave TF100 Test Kit/Speed Stir
    Margaritaville Frozen Concoction Maker, Liqour Chiller, & Drink Mixer & Party Tub----Collect 'um all!

  3. Back To Top    #3
    robdac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Weston, FL

    Re: New pool owner can't get the chemicals right--and rain ain't helping

    What Woodyp said!

    Muratic acid to bring down the Ph. See pool math. Cyanuric Acid in a closed sock (I use a zip tie) in the skimmer basket to get enough CYA to protect the chlorine. Then some plain ole bleach. Get a recommended test kit today and start reading.

    Welcome aboard.
    11K gal IG screened-in plaster pool w/ spa
    pentair 150 cartridge filter, Pentair Intelliflow VS pump,
    Aquarite AQR15 SWG, AquaCal Heatwave Heat Pump, TF-100 test kit

  4. Back To Top    #4
    Divin Dave's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Longview, Texas

    Re: New pool owner can't get the chemicals right--and rain ain't helping

    In order to know whats going on, you really really really need a good test kit. This site only sells test kits that are dependable. EIther of them listed will be fine, but the TF100 is a better bang for the buck.
    You cant rely on the pool people to test correct, or accurately, and certain cannot depend on them to make the proper recommendations.

    Your FC may be 0 because something is eating it up! Just because water is clear doesnt mean there isnt algae. Only when its too late, does the alge actually become visible to the eye.

    Your FC may also be zero because the test strips are just no good at accuracy.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge. Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

  5. Back To Top    #5
    Mod Squad
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    DFW, TX

    Re: New pool owner can't get the chemicals right--and rain ain't helping

    Welcome to TFP!

    Here is some basic info to get you started,
    TFPC for Beginners
    ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry
    Recommended Levels
    Recommended Pool Chemicals
    TFP Moderator
    If TFP helped you or saved you money - Become a TFP Supporter! <--Click here
    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

  6. Back To Top    #6
    SCon36's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Bedford, KY

    Re: New pool owner can't get the chemicals right--and rain ain't helping

    I relied on a test strip early last season on CYA and got my pool jacked up. Never did show a good reading after adding stabilizer. Once I bought the correct kit, I found out it was over 100. The test strip also failed to read chlorine because the level was actually too high and bleached the strip so it read low on chlorine. This site helped me get things back in order.

    24,000 Gallon IG vinyl pool (16x36x8) with Hayward S200 sand filter and Hayward pump and heat pump. Built August 2011. I use a Taylor K-2005 test kit with a K-1515 add on.

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