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Thread: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

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    15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    I will try to keep this as short as possible. I’m a pool novice but last year I purchased and installed a heavily used 15’ x 48’ AGP. There were some holes and some rust but with some patching it held water (mostly) and it came with a 1500 gph pump and SWG. I essentially filled the thing up and then had to do very little maintenance over the summer and just enjoyed the pool.
    This winter I chose to leave it up and simply removed the pumps and put a cover on it. Sometime during the winter the cover tore and a large amount of leaves and debris accumulated in the pool before I realized what was going happening.
    I “opened” the pool a couple weekends ago and have had some great difficulty getting this thing clean. I chose not to drain the water and simply fill the pool hoping that the pump and some vacuuming would help clear things up. One of the biggest issues I am having is that I’ve been unable to successfully vacuum all the debris out of the pool and the water has cleared some but only slightly.
    I’ve scoured the forum for tips and ideas but haven’t come up with anything concrete yet. Here are the issues that I have.
    The biggest issue I have is that I have been unable to successfully sustain an adequate amount of suction for a long enough period of time to get all the debris out of the pool. It doesn’t help that the water is not clear enough to be able to see all the debris to get with the net. Previously I was hooking the vacuum hose to the intake port on the side of the pool but this would quickly clog the port and the filter. I did install a side wall skimmer last weekend with the hope that this would at least give me a good place to hook up my manual vacuum as well as provide a basket to catch the larger debris. Now I cannot get the pump to maintain adequate suction either through the old intake port or the skimmer. I have also had trouble keeping the pump running as the “reset” switch keeps popping off due to the “strain” on the pump when the filter gets clogged (which happens quickly).
    I did try last night running the vacuum without the filter in the pump hoping to get the majority of the larger debris but was still not able to get enough suction to do any good.
    I’m wondering now if my pump is defective or has become clogged. I have done some research on new pumps and can upgrade to a 2500 gph pretty reasonably. I am operating on an extremely tight budget or I would consider upgrading to a sand filter.

    I guess in summation my questions are:

    What are some things to look for with the existing system that might help me to better manually vacuum the pool and/or clear up the water?
    Would upgrading to a 2500 gph pump help my situation or should I be looking at scrapping together pennies for a sand or DE filter?
    I have not added any chemicals other than the salt for the SWG. Should I be adding anything else to help clear up the cloudy (brown from the debris)? Should I be shocking this pool?

    Would buying a better quality cartridge help? Right now I have 2 off the shelf intex filters I keep cleaning and using.

    Thanks in advance for your advice and suggestions!
    15'x45" AGP Metal Frame with SWG Intex 2500GHP - Hayward SP1091LX Dyna-Skim Above-Ground Pool Skimmer and Accessory Kit - TF 100

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    I would use a large leaf rake/net to scoop all the bigs stuff out before using the vacuum. You can do this blindly and get almost all of it.
    Lisa
    Intex AG vinyl 15' x 48" 4,300 gallons due to skimmer install, Krystal Clear SF pump combo 2800 GPH, Krystal Clear SWG, Pool Blaster Max vacuum, Hayward thru the wall skimmer, TF 100 test kit with speed stir, K 1766 Taylor salt test, My SLAM Process

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Quote Originally Posted by Azgirl71 View Post
    I would use a large leaf rake/net to scoop all the bigs stuff out before using the vacuum. You can do this blindly and get almost all of it.
    Check... I've gotten as much debris with the leaf rake as I can.
    15'x45" AGP Metal Frame with SWG Intex 2500GHP - Hayward SP1091LX Dyna-Skim Above-Ground Pool Skimmer and Accessory Kit - TF 100

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Ok, check for any clogs and try the vacuum again.

    Do you have a recommended test kit yet?

    Also feel free to read through My SLAM process linked in my signature.
    Lisa
    Intex AG vinyl 15' x 48" 4,300 gallons due to skimmer install, Krystal Clear SF pump combo 2800 GPH, Krystal Clear SWG, Pool Blaster Max vacuum, Hayward thru the wall skimmer, TF 100 test kit with speed stir, K 1766 Taylor salt test, My SLAM Process

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Quote Originally Posted by Azgirl71 View Post
    Ok, check for any clogs and try the vacuum again.

    Do you have a recommended test kit yet?

    Also feel free to read through My SLAM process linked in my signature.
    I do not have a test kit yet but will have to get one and I will review the slam process.

    WOW! Those test kits are not cheap! Are there some cheaper alternatives?
    15'x45" AGP Metal Frame with SWG Intex 2500GHP - Hayward SP1091LX Dyna-Skim Above-Ground Pool Skimmer and Accessory Kit - TF 100

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    You're buying a test kit that will out perform any test kit on the market and measure FC up to 50ppm. You will need to know how much FC you Are losing during the night to determine if and when you're done and no other test kit will do that. If you stop to soon, you will continue to grow algae.

    Take care of the test kit and keep in a cool dry place and it Will,last you a couple seasons and you can replace what you need with refills. I'd buy one again If I needed it. I use it everyday. I wouldn't want to clear a dirty pool without one.
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

    24' Sharkline Venture De Filter

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    The tests are the best investment you can make for your pool! They will last you though. If SLAMming you may go through more product but once pool is balanced you don't test as much and if stored properly it will last you a couple years.

    - - - Updated - - -

    You get more bang for your buck with the TF 100.
    Lisa
    Intex AG vinyl 15' x 48" 4,300 gallons due to skimmer install, Krystal Clear SF pump combo 2800 GPH, Krystal Clear SWG, Pool Blaster Max vacuum, Hayward thru the wall skimmer, TF 100 test kit with speed stir, K 1766 Taylor salt test, My SLAM Process

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    The test kit will pay for itself just in money saved on chemicals.
    Intex 12'x24'x52"
    8,403 gallons
    Intex SF60110 2450 GPH Sand Filter
    Intex CS8110 SWG
    Aquabot AJET121I Pool Rover S20-40

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    If you are able a small sand filter and quality pool pump would be the first step.
    You can find the Intex or Sand Man sets for around $130 new online.
    Or look on CL for a used one.
    My 18' x 52" Intex was impossible to keep clean until I bought a sand filter
    Post your location also

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    The test kit will ultimately save you money. If you do your own testing you know exactly what is in your pool and what you need to do to maintain it. You will not waste money on chemicals you don't need. That's it.
    28 ft round ABG with ~6ft deep end, approx. 20,000 gal, 2 spd 2 HP pump, sand filter

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Ok... I'm ordering the TF 100 today and it should be here Saturday.

    My next question is... Amazon has a 2500 for $65. I can't quit swing $130-150 for a sand pump right now. I could but it would be a real stretch. If my 1500gph pump is simply clogged, would it still be worth the $65 to upgrade my pump or would it be better to make do with the 1500gph wait until I can swing $150 for the sand filter and pump upgrade?
    15'x45" AGP Metal Frame with SWG Intex 2500GHP - Hayward SP1091LX Dyna-Skim Above-Ground Pool Skimmer and Accessory Kit - TF 100

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Fill the hose with water and start it siphoning onto the ground while you vacuum. Then just refill with fresh water when you're done.
    25000 gallon free-form gunite
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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    As far as the test kits being expensive, let me chime in as a newbie. I have had a pool in my yard for 15 years (not counting the years as a child). I've fiddled around with the test strips and hundreds of dollars worth of chemicals from the pool store and walmart. I would hold the test strip up and debate with myself what color it was showing. This is the earliest I have ever opened my pool this year and when I took a sample to the pool store they handed me a list of $320 worth of chemicals I needed to dump into my pool. I didn't spend a penny there. I did however spend $60 on a great test kit and $6 on bleach. My pool has been up and running since the end of April and I have used only 2 bottles of bleach on it. It sparkles like diamonds too!! That 60$ kit has more than paid for itself by now. Do yourself a big favor: listen to the experts here, buy a good test kit, buy lots of bleach and take control of your pool! It works!

    Intex 22X52 Ultra Frame
    Hayward VL Series Sand Filter
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    Taylor TF-100
    Gorgeous deck!

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Does your filter have an option to "pump to waste"? If not, another option would be to get a whirlpool going (old canoe paddle works fine) so all the debris moves to the center. Then use the vacuum hose as a siphon and siphon all the debris out from the center. I did this once by zip tying the hose to the extension pole so I could control it easier. Slow, but it works.
    Unknown make 18' above ground (bought used in 1999) Sparco sand filter. Hayward 100,000 BTu heater. 2 speed pump

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    The OP has the pump that came with his pool. It is a small cartrige pump filter.
    Lisa
    Intex AG vinyl 15' x 48" 4,300 gallons due to skimmer install, Krystal Clear SF pump combo 2800 GPH, Krystal Clear SWG, Pool Blaster Max vacuum, Hayward thru the wall skimmer, TF 100 test kit with speed stir, K 1766 Taylor salt test, My SLAM Process

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Update: No, I do not have a pump that can pump to waste.
    My TF 100 should be here today so I can post some of my results later. I also will try to get a picture of the pool condition ASAP.

    Last night I took the pump apart to check the propeller for damage or clogs and everything looks fine. I ended up taking out the filter and left the pump running. I'm not sure if this is acceptable or not but I was concerned about getting the water flowing before the water condition got any worse. I woke this morning to discover that sometime during the night the GFI had tripped and the pump was no longer running. I'm wondering if this might be a symptom of the pump motor beginning to go bad?

    Today's question:
    Is it ok to run the pump without the cartridge? I have a hayward side wall skimmer to catch the big debris. Essentially I'm just trying to get some water flow over the SWG.
    15'x45" AGP Metal Frame with SWG Intex 2500GHP - Hayward SP1091LX Dyna-Skim Above-Ground Pool Skimmer and Accessory Kit - TF 100

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    I would not run it without the cartridge. Can you use your net or a brush to kind of make a whirlpool, putting all the debris in the center, so you can scoop it out? That's usually how I started cleaning mine. The bleach will be much more effective if it isn't trying to break down the leaves. Patience is needed, that's the hardest part!
    26' X 52" Intex Ultra Frame. Intex Sand Filter
    26' X 52 Intex Ultra Frame Install
    You can lead a horse to (clear) water, but you can't force him to swim in it!

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Got my TF 100 today and did my first test. I almost tested everything twice but the cost of this test made me hesitant. If any of these numbers seem ridiculous then tell me and I will retest.

    My results are:
    FC 3
    CC 0
    PH 7.0
    CYA 0 (water clear after I added the regent)
    TA 40
    CH 60

    My SWG Is saying low salt.
    I have removed all the debris I can.
    My pump is running filter less because I would have to clean filter every two hours to keep water flowing otherwise.
    I'm about ready to give up so someone please tell me where I go from here.
    image.jpg
    15'x45" AGP Metal Frame with SWG Intex 2500GHP - Hayward SP1091LX Dyna-Skim Above-Ground Pool Skimmer and Accessory Kit - TF 100

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Glad you have your TF 100!

    Ok you need to add CYA. To do this you will use pool math to determine how much Stablizer to add to a sock to target 30 for CYA. Set the sock in top of the skimmer or tie it in front of a return jet to disolve. Keep your pump running as it is dissolving. You can queeze the sock every couple hours or so to help it disolve.

    Until the Stablizer is dissolved we will say your CYA is 0. Once Stablizer is dissolved we will say your CYA is 30, but don't test is for 1 week after adding it as it won't show up.

    Look at the chlorine CYA chart and it will show a CYA level for 30 your target. You need to add for the SLAM shock level of 30.
    Lisa
    Intex AG vinyl 15' x 48" 4,300 gallons due to skimmer install, Krystal Clear SF pump combo 2800 GPH, Krystal Clear SWG, Pool Blaster Max vacuum, Hayward thru the wall skimmer, TF 100 test kit with speed stir, K 1766 Taylor salt test, My SLAM Process

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    Re: 15'X48 AGP w/ SWG can't get clean on tight budget

    Quote Originally Posted by Azgirl71 View Post
    Glad you have your TF 100!

    Ok you need to add CYA. To do this you will use pool math to determine how much Stablizer to add to a sock to target 30 for CYA. Set the sock in top of the skimmer or tie it in front of a return jet to disolve. Keep your pump running as it is dissolving. You can queeze the sock every couple hours or so to help it disolve.

    Until the Stablizer is dissolved we will say your CYA is 0. Once Stablizer is dissolved we will say your CYA is 30, but don't test is for 1 week after adding it as it won't show up.

    Look at the chlorine CYA chart and it will show a CYA level for 30 your target. You need to add for the SLAM shock level of 30.
    Ok... Forgive my ignorance but when I look at the Chlorine/CYA Chart I see 60-80 for SWG pool. What am I missing? Thanks!
    15'x45" AGP Metal Frame with SWG Intex 2500GHP - Hayward SP1091LX Dyna-Skim Above-Ground Pool Skimmer and Accessory Kit - TF 100

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