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Thread: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

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    Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Complete pool newb here, but I'm quickly learning about the "joy" of pool ownership. We just opened the pool this week on Monday. Actually had the professional that put the pool in originally do it, as I knew nothing. Anyway, I took a water sample to the local store last night and here are my test results from the ClearCare Expert analysis. In short, they tell me I'm in chlorine lock and I need to drain 2 feet of water, refill, and check again. From what I'm reading around the interwebs, I'll more realistically need to drain over half the pool. Was hoping to get your input on the situation. Is it worth getting a second test done to verify things?

    Free Available Chlorine 16.67
    Total Chlorine 16.67
    Combined Chlorine 0
    pH Level 7.9
    Total Alkalinity (Input) 152
    Total Alkalinity (Adj) 99
    Calcium Hardness 147
    Cyanuric Acid 160
    Copper .1
    Iron .2
    Manganese 0
    Nitrates 0
    Total Dissolved Solids 1300
    Phosphates 1000
    Saturation Index .5
    Endure 19

    Thanks!
    16x32 IG Vinyl 22K gal, Tagelus Deluxe High Rate Sand Filter TA-60D, Jacuzzi Magnum Force 1MF-S pump, Hayward CL-200 Chlorine Feeder (NOT in use), Raypak RP 2100 Heater
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Welcome.
    Chlorine lock is their code word for your CYA is too high. You need to get a test kit so you can get accurate results yourself, but yes you are going to need to drain some water and test again. How does the water look? You will need to keep your chlorine level high until you get your CYA lower. See pool math to calculate the appropriate levels.
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    poolnoob.ca's Avatar
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    when it comes to pool store testing, its always a good idea to get a second test done, but not by a pool store. if you poke around this forum you will see the m.o. is to do accurate testing yourself with a quality test kit, and add to the pool only what it needs, purchased cheaper from grocery or hardware stores, not overpriced, unnecessary products that the pool store says you need based on their inaccurate testing and seemingly lack of knowledge.
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Wanted to say welcome to TFP! As the others have said you need to get your own test kit and forget the pool store.
    Lisa
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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Welcome to the forum,

    Chlorine lock is a myth, but it means what you, and the previous posters have said. Your Cya (stabilizer) is simply too high, if that reading is corect. If it is, you will need to drain and refill a bit more, but you won't really know until you get some reliable numbers from a proper kit. Your source of chlorine is what got your Cya too high, so you'll need to look at changing that, or you'll wind up in the same spot you're in now.
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Welcome!

    The others have already covered test kit and drain, but in case you're wondering how that happened....

    Here's a little comparison I wrote a few weeks ago
    We'll take a 16000 gallon pool, because that's what I have. On a fresh fill, prominent national pool chain recommends 2.5 pounds pf stabilizer per 10,000 gallons, which works out nicely to 4 pounds which brings CYA to 30.

    With an average loss of 2 PPM/Day or 14 ppm/week, I'll have added 8.6 PPM/CYA if I used trichlor pucks perfectly. And they recommend a weekly "shock" of dichlor between 5 and 10 FC.... 2-3 oz per 10,000 gallons. Split the difference; I'll add 4 oz. CYA went up another .9.

    So..by the end of week one, I have added 9.5 more CYA. It is now 39.5. Mimimum FC for that is 3, so I'm probably okay.

    Week two, up to 49 CYA.
    Week three, 58.5. Minimum FC should be 5, but they recommend 3 as ideal, so the pool looks a bit hazy. So I'll toss in a little extra dichlor "shock" to jack FC up to 10. Which adds another 6.4 CYA. Keeping count? We're up to 64.9 now.

    That caught the algae just in time.. we had two weeks of good luck. A steady diet of pucks and 4 oz. "shock" each week only added another 19, up to 73.9 now.

    Week 6 it started looking funky, so we "shocked"it once again. CYA is up to 99.3. But minimum FC to keep algae at bay is 8, and we're still holding things to 3, because prominent national chain's preprinted sheet shows that as ideal. So algae got a toehold and the pool has a bit of a tint. So we throw two whole bags of dichlor in which jacks it another 7.6 by the time week 7 is over, we're at 116.4, because we had pucks in the floater the whole time.

    So...in 7 weeks, from 30 to 116.4. Let's say there are no more algae outbreaks because they sold me a huge bucket of phos-free and another of yellow-out monopersulfate "shock" Nothing but the pucks and the extra 4 oz of dichlor "shock" weekly. So the next 7 weeks added 66.5, which brings the total to 182.9 CYA.

    Now if we didn't understand this and things looked a bit hazy, we might throw an extra puck or two in the floater every couple weeks, which will drive it over 200 easily.
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320 View Post
    Welcome!

    The others have already covered test kit and drain, but in case you're wondering how that happened....

    Here's a little comparison I wrote a few weeks ago
    We'll take a 16000 gallon pool, because that's what I have. On a fresh fill, prominent national pool chain recommends 2.5 pounds pf stabilizer per 10,000 gallons, which works out nicely to 4 pounds which brings CYA to 30.

    With an average loss of 2 PPM/Day or 14 ppm/week, I'll have added 8.6 PPM/CYA if I used trichlor pucks perfectly. And they recommend a weekly "shock" of dichlor between 5 and 10 FC.... 2-3 oz per 10,000 gallons. Split the difference; I'll add 4 oz. CYA went up another .9.

    So..by the end of week one, I have added 9.5 more CYA. It is now 39.5. Mimimum FC for that is 3, so I'm probably okay.

    Week two, up to 49 CYA.
    Week three, 58.5. Minimum FC should be 5, but they recommend 3 as ideal, so the pool looks a bit hazy. So I'll toss in a little extra dichlor "shock" to jack FC up to 10. Which adds another 6.4 CYA. Keeping count? We're up to 64.9 now.

    That caught the algae just in time.. we had two weeks of good luck. A steady diet of pucks and 4 oz. "shock" each week only added another 19, up to 73.9 now.

    Week 6 it started looking funky, so we "shocked"it once again. CYA is up to 99.3. But minimum FC to keep algae at bay is 8, and we're still holding things to 3, because prominent national chain's preprinted sheet shows that as ideal. So algae got a toehold and the pool has a bit of a tint. So we throw two whole bags of dichlor in which jacks it another 7.6 by the time week 7 is over, we're at 116.4, because we had pucks in the floater the whole time.

    So...in 7 weeks, from 30 to 116.4. Let's say there are no more algae outbreaks because they sold me a huge bucket of phos-free and another of yellow-out monopersulfate "shock" Nothing but the pucks and the extra 4 oz of dichlor "shock" weekly. So the next 7 weeks added 66.5, which brings the total to 182.9 CYA.

    Now if we didn't understand this and things looked a bit hazy, we might throw an extra puck or two in the floater every couple weeks, which will drive it over 200 easily.
    Yikes! Everyone should be required to read that to understand what those products do to your CYA. Great Posting!!!
    Rick
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Thanks everyone for all the quick feedback and the welcomes! The pool looks pretty good - maybe a little cloudy if anything, but color looks good to the untrained eye. Thanks for the information on "how that happened" Richard320. I was definitely wondering. The previous owner said he put 4-5 3" pucks a week and shocked it every other week. I will definitely be ordering a test kit today and go from there. Thanks for the handy links Patrick_B.
    16x32 IG Vinyl 22K gal, Tagelus Deluxe High Rate Sand Filter TA-60D, Jacuzzi Magnum Force 1MF-S pump, Hayward CL-200 Chlorine Feeder (NOT in use), Raypak RP 2100 Heater
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    These pucks get sold to everyone under the name of ease of pool management, none of that messy liquid Chlorine / Bleach, however you can see all the problems they cause, so ask yourself is the headache of handling a little bleach less than the long term headache those pucks cause?
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Ah, Isaac, I miss Louisiana! (Lived in Mandeville for a few years) - Yes, I'm glad I didn't buy the pucks that I was about to yesterday. I was going to order a K-2006 test kit, since I could get it quickly via Prime, but I see everyone endorses the TF-100 and I reviewed the comparison table. That's what I'm going with.
    16x32 IG Vinyl 22K gal, Tagelus Deluxe High Rate Sand Filter TA-60D, Jacuzzi Magnum Force 1MF-S pump, Hayward CL-200 Chlorine Feeder (NOT in use), Raypak RP 2100 Heater
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    OMG Richard I think that's the single most helpful thing I've ever read here (saying a lot) and explains so much of my trouble the last two years! THANK YOU!!!

    Ditched the pool store with the new start with our new pool last week and have come to LOVE the Pool Math section here, but the relationship of FC and CYA and the water was still a little hazy, if you will, until this post. Awesomeness on a stick.
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    Crystal clear, but some high numbers - safe to swim?

    Noob pool owner. Pool was opened one week ago today. Only numbers I have so far are from pool store 4 days ago (self-test kit arrives Wednesday). Water is crystal clear. "Looks" beautiful. Based on these numbers from the pool store, is it safe to swim in?

    FC 16.67
    TC 16.67
    CC 0
    Ph 7.9
    TA 152 (99 adjusted)
    CH 147
    Cya 160
    Copper .1
    Iron .2
    Manganese 0
    Nitrates 0
    TDS 1300 (I think they just typed this in)
    Phosphates 1000
    Saturation Index .5
    Endure 19

    Thanks!
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    16x32 IG Vinyl 22K gal, Tagelus Deluxe High Rate Sand Filter TA-60D, Jacuzzi Magnum Force 1MF-S pump, Hayward CL-200 Chlorine Feeder (NOT in use), Raypak RP 2100 Heater
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    Re: Crystal clear, but some high numbers - safe to swim?

    As long as they are correct , yes it's safe to swim, but you have your work curt out for you. That FC is very low for your CYA.
    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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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Thanks for your super-fast reply Tim. I'll post back on Wednesday, when I have a chance to test it myself.
    16x32 IG Vinyl 22K gal, Tagelus Deluxe High Rate Sand Filter TA-60D, Jacuzzi Magnum Force 1MF-S pump, Hayward CL-200 Chlorine Feeder (NOT in use), Raypak RP 2100 Heater
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Letting FC drop below minimum for CYA level will allow algae to grow. Chlorine CYA Chart
    Yours needs to be above 12 at all times and really should be 18-20. You do not want to let algae grow because shock level would be 62ppm.
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    I was able to test with the Taylor 2006 today.
    Cya 100+ (can't tell how high actually, because it only goes to 100)
    Ph 7.5
    FC 13.2
    CC 0
    TA 170

    From what I understand, I'm looking at partial drainage until I get Cya down.
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Yes, you likely want to do several partial drains until you get the CYA down to something more manageable
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Re: Opened the pool and first store test results very high Chlorine and CYA levels

    Just came across an old Bioguard test the previous owners had done in 2012. On the sheet it says Cya ideal level "30-200"!
    16x32 IG Vinyl 22K gal, Tagelus Deluxe High Rate Sand Filter TA-60D, Jacuzzi Magnum Force 1MF-S pump, Hayward CL-200 Chlorine Feeder (NOT in use), Raypak RP 2100 Heater
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