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Thread: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

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    Newpoolcrazy's Avatar
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    Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    Have been reading forum for days, but since I'm so new at this I'm not sure what applies to my specific pool. (intex vinyl 16' x 48" approx. 6000 gal) Took forever to get my TA in check, and my FC had gotten to 2 (using 3" tabs with stabilizer) until it rained. Ugh!

    Shocked last night with Chlor Brite as per pool store advice. CYA was very low and FC was at 0. I would rather keep my numbers in check so I don't have to shock at all, but I may sometimes have babies in the pool so I may be forced to from time to time. If you catch my drift.

    Now my numbers are as follows:

    TA - 90
    Ph - 7.6
    CYA - 30
    FC - 5+ (think it would have been closer to 6 if my tester went that high)

    Is it safe to swim yet? Do I need to wait till it gets down to at least 4 with the CYA so low?) Kids will be swimming and I Don't want the bleach blondes to get green hair.

    Also, pool people said don't worry about low CH because my pool is vinyl. Is this true?

    What is a good test kit at a decent price range? Something off the internet is fine. I'm using HTC 6 way which mostly jives with the pool store tester, but some things are a bit off (like CYA) and I don't know whether it's us or them.

    Do I sound like I even have a clue what I'm talking about?

    Thanks in advance,
    Lost Girl
    Cornelius Monterey Steel/Resin AG 18' round (approx. 7600+gallons) Hayward veri-flo SWG w/sand filter.Testing w/ TK2006 using Speed stir.

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    mrcarcrazy's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Newpoolcrazy View Post
    Have been reading forum for days, but since I'm so new at this I'm not sure what applies to my specific pool. (intex vinyl 16' x 48' approx. 6000 gal) Took forever to get my TA in check, and my FC had gotten to 2 (using 3" tabs with stabilizer) until it rained. Ugh!

    Shocked last night with Chlor Brite as per pool store advice. CYA was very low and FC was at 0. I would rather keep my numbers in check so I don't have to shock at all, but I may sometimes have babies in the pool so I may be forced to from time to time. If you catch my drift.

    Now my numbers are as follows:

    TA - 90
    Ph - 7.6
    CYA - 30
    FC - 5+ (think it would have been closer to 6 if my tester went that high)

    Is it safe to swim yet? Do I need to wait till it gets down to at least 4 with the CYA so low?) Kids will be swimming and I Don't want the bleach blondes to get green hair.

    Also, pool people said don't worry about low CH because my pool is vinyl. Is this true?

    What is a good test kit at a decent price range? Something off the internet is fine. I'm using HTC 6 way which mostly jives with the pool store tester, but some things are a bit off (like CYA) and I don't know whether it's us or them.

    Do I sound like I even have a clue what I'm talking about?

    Thanks in advance,
    Lost Girl
    Welcome to the forum,

    There's only 2 test kits I would suggest anyone buy. The first is actually two test kits (big vs small). TF50 and TF100 www.tftestkits.net The price seems high...trust me it isn't, well don't trust me...never trust someone who says "trust me"...but trust in the fact it's the best kit on the market and it will save you so much heartache.

    The second is basically the same thing but can sometimes be found locally Taylor K2006

    Click on the "pool school" link at the top of the screen. read the ABC's of water chem. It will shed some light.

    Sadly I can't answer your question on the safety of the Chlorine level...since we really don't know what the chlorine level is. We could do some creative math and get a rough idea...but I don't want to do that and be wrong, so I won't.

    Also most here use what we call the "Trouble Free Pool Care" method of keeping your chems in line. It's a simple process and you will save yourself buckets of money and loads of stress if you adopt it.

    some other helpful links (they can all be found in pool school as well)
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...its-comparison
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...nate-your-pool
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...pool-chemicals

    and my favorite tool here
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...ool-calculator
    IG gunite/plaster pool/spa Started 1/17/14, Plastered 5/16/14
    Size: 12'-21'x39' free form, depth ranging from 4' to 7, attached 6 person spa with spillover.
    Equipment: Whisperflo 2hp pump, Pentair 30" sand filter, Pentair Mastertemp 400k BTU heater, 1hp Whisperflo for waterfalls, and a blower for spa floor

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    Newpoolcrazy's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    Thanks for the tester advice and the link. I think the t100 was the one I had read about before. Believe it or not, I read the ABC's but I don't have a lot of confidence in my own judgment quite yet so I feel like I'm in complete darkness, when I'm probably not that far off.
    Cornelius Monterey Steel/Resin AG 18' round (approx. 7600+gallons) Hayward veri-flo SWG w/sand filter.Testing w/ TK2006 using Speed stir.

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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    I understand that. Last year I was in that spot. Once you get the kit and start playing with it you'll be a pro in no time at all. I promise you can trust yourself much more than you can trust the pool stores magical wizard machine.

    Pro tip, Speed Stir is a gift from the gods.
    IG gunite/plaster pool/spa Started 1/17/14, Plastered 5/16/14
    Size: 12'-21'x39' free form, depth ranging from 4' to 7, attached 6 person spa with spillover.
    Equipment: Whisperflo 2hp pump, Pentair 30" sand filter, Pentair Mastertemp 400k BTU heater, 1hp Whisperflo for waterfalls, and a blower for spa floor

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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    Hi Newpoolcrazy,
    with CYA of 30, you're babies will be just fine.

    Its perfectly safe to swim in pools with FC levels up to 40% of the CYA level (this is called SLAM level here at TFP).
    so with CYA of 30*.4 = 12ppm FC.. thats your safe to swim level.

    I would recommend you stop using the pucks (this is mentioned in pool school), and use regular bleach as your chlorine source.
    For regular maintenance of chlorine, its 7.5% minimum - 11.5% of the CYA.

    Here is the FC/CYA chlorine chart for handy reference, (the math is already done).
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/calc.html

    So next question on the topic is how much to add eh? ta-daaaa. here is a handy little tool. Just enter how many gallons in the Volume box.
    in the boxes on the left enter your test result.
    In the boxes to the right of the ones on the left, enter the recommended level, and click the calculate button. Pool math will tell you how much of something to add. Its simple enough I reckon.
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...art-slam-shock

    And here are all of the recommended levels. You dont have to do anything with CH since you have a vinyl pool.
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/conte...mmended-levels
    I hope this helps,...
    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.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    Your pH is good, your FC is okay for the CYA. If the water is clear and warm enough to stand it, hop in.
    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: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    It helps a lot! But since I'm sooo new, I'm not comfortable enough to switch to BBB yet as I'm still getting to know my pool and how it jives with the weather. For example, rain might dilute my chlorine CYA, but it's actually lowing my TA slightly. (could that be because where we live in a area where there are chemical plants there is acid in the rain?) I've googled BBB method everywhere and the only downside I see is having to add some 6% bleach almost every day. Don't see what the big whoop there is since I test Chlorine and Ph everyday anyway.
    Cornelius Monterey Steel/Resin AG 18' round (approx. 7600+gallons) Hayward veri-flo SWG w/sand filter.Testing w/ TK2006 using Speed stir.

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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    If you test your chlorine and pH everyday anyways, I would go ahead and jump on the BBB boat. My main reason saying this is I am in the middle of my 5th (yes, you read that right) drain because of chlorine tablets. I bought a house with a 18x36 in-ground pool and my CYA level way well over 200. The CYA never depletes itself like chlorine. It only goes away with water removal. Once that level gets high, you are fighting fire with gasoline because everything stays out of whack and will not stabilize. You will be having to keep more and more tablets in to keep your FC level up to a level that will prevent algae. All this time you are just adding more and more CYA to your pool. Then, one day, BOOM you have a green pool that you just can't seem to get to clear up. Your pool is quite smaller in gallons than mine, so it may not be a concern to to drain and refill. It probably wouldn't bother me as bad either. If you did stay with the chlorine tablets I would keep a very close eye on my CYA level and do small drains here and there to keep it in par. If you don't you will be fighting your pH, TA and FC levels constantly. They really don't recommend the tablets at all on here unless you are going on vacation and can't keep an eye on your FC... I am new to this forum, but I can already tell you. I am sold on their method and they have been a tremendous help!!!

    I want to also say that this method is way easier for me to understand than the conventional pool store way. This way you test and you know your exact FC level and all you do is put it in the Poolmath calculator along with your pool specs and woolah, it tells you the exact amount of bleach to pour in. With tablets you can't stay on top of everything because I mean you test your FC and hmm, do I add one tablet, break it in half, add two???
    Last edited by lindz18; 05-21-2015 at 02:37 PM. Reason: typo
    24k gal. In-ground, vinyl. 2005 build
    Hayward Pro-Series S244T sand filter system
    Hayward motor & pump (rpm 3450,model SP2607X10)
    Polaris 280 w/booster pump.Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Newpoolcrazy's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    Thanks for the vote of confidence. I think I can switch if I do a bit more reading to make sure I'm doing it right. When new test kit comes, I might just get it all memorized and
    hit the ground running.
    Cornelius Monterey Steel/Resin AG 18' round (approx. 7600+gallons) Hayward veri-flo SWG w/sand filter.Testing w/ TK2006 using Speed stir.

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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Newpoolcrazy View Post
    Thanks for the vote of confidence. I think I can switch if I do a bit more reading to make sure I'm doing it right. When new test kit comes, I might just get it all memorized and
    hit the ground running.
    That test kit will give you all the confidence you need! After I got mine and compared it to what I had been using it was amazing!!! No wonder people have so much trouble keeping their pool right! Especially, the dummies like me that was using test strips. Until you get one of the Taylor kits you really have no clue of what you have in your water and how much you are adjusting it.

    A lot less room for error with this way... Just a few simple things you use. Bleach, Borax, Baking Soda , etc. etc. No wondering what in the world all those chemicals with all the dumb names do. Lol. You put your values in the calculator and it tells you exactly what amount of WHAT to put in it. Mr. Calculator is much smarter than the pool store... and cheaper!
    24k gal. In-ground, vinyl. 2005 build
    Hayward Pro-Series S244T sand filter system
    Hayward motor & pump (rpm 3450,model SP2607X10)
    Polaris 280 w/booster pump.Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Newpoolcrazy View Post
    It helps a lot! But since I'm sooo new, I'm not comfortable enough to switch to BBB yet as I'm still getting to know my pool and how it jives with the weather. For example, rain might dilute my chlorine CYA, but it's actually lowing my TA slightly. (could that be because where we live in a area where there are chemical plants there is acid in the rain?) I've googled BBB method everywhere and the only downside I see is having to add some 6% bleach almost every day. Don't see what the big whoop there is since I test Chlorine and Ph everyday anyway.
    rain doesn't impact your results, unless you are getting tons of rain and your water is overflowing the pool, thus diluting. not sure where that old wives tale started. don't worry about the rain.

    the CYA and TA are going to probably be a little different each time due to user "error" and the fact that these tests are not accurate to very small levels, i.e. CYA is probably +/- 5ppm easily, probably more. and no, rain isn't lowering your TA due to "acid rain". acid rain is another wives tale type issue that people believe in. yes, there are situations/areas where it occurs but im pretty sure you are ok.

    you either gotta follow the pool store peoples advice (wouldn't do that) or follow the advice on here, but you gotta choose...cant try to do half and half. pick a side and stick to it
    Dan
    9,000 gallon in-ground Saltwater pool, plaster, cartridge filer, 1.0 hp pump, Hayward T-15 SWCG, TF-100
    Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart; Pool School - Test Kits Compared;

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    laveenmoose's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie with rainy day woes. Are we safe to swim yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Newpoolcrazy View Post
    Thanks for the vote of confidence. I think I can switch if I do a bit more reading to make sure I'm doing it right. When new test kit comes, I might just get it all memorized and
    hit the ground running.
    Quote Originally Posted by lindz18 View Post
    That test kit will give you all the confidence you need! After I got mine and compared it to what I had been using it was amazing!!! No wonder people have so much trouble keeping their pool right! Especially, the dummies like me that was using test strips. Until you get one of the Taylor kits you really have no clue of what you have in your water and how much you are adjusting it.

    A lot less room for error with this way... Just a few simple things you use. Bleach, Borax, Baking Soda , etc. etc. No wondering what in the world all those chemicals with all the dumb names do. Lol. You put your values in the calculator and it tells you exactly what amount of WHAT to put in it. Mr. Calculator is much smarter than the pool store... and cheaper!
    I agree with lindz18, once you use the test kit (the instructions are easy and concise, they have to be because I mastered it!) and plug your numbers into Poolmath (you can use it on your smartphone or computer) the clouds of doubt will dissipate, and the reading you've done in pool school will make so much more sense. You can do it, and once you do, you'll never turn back to the dark side
    10.5K IG gunnite pool with micro-pebble finish in Caribbean blue with Baja step. Haywood main filter with Perry's Pool Pump 1hp motor. Jandy CL-340 cartridge filter. Circupool RJ30 SWG system. TF100 test kit with Speedstir. Floating beer cooler.

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