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Thread: Algae out of control

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    Algae out of control

    I am a new pool owner and when I opened the pool it was a swamp. It had grey water and many insects living in it and lots of debris on the bottom. I started by adding liquid chlorine (5 gallons) to my pool. the pool immediately started to turn green. After two days it turned blue and I brought the water to be tested at the pool store. They said I needed to adjust some levels and I added stabilizer and cyanic acid. While the pool was blue it was cloudy. The next day it was green again. I added 2lbs shock and another 5 gallons of liquid chlorine. Nothing happened. I brought another sample to the pool store and the levels were all good and they said chlorine was at 15 (shock Level). That day I added three lbs of shock and still green. It is starting to get costly any suggestions?

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Algae out of control

    My first suggestion is to stop going to the pool store. Their only response it to sell you something.

    I will tell you, it didn't turn green overnight and it will take time to clear. But, we can teach you how to get it sparkling and keep it that was for a lot less money than the pool store.

    Not much credence is given to pool store testing. While you would think that a "professional" would be the best, unfortunately in most cases it is quite the opposite. Between employees who blindly trust the word of chemical sales representatives and high school kids working in the pool store for the summer you end up with poor results from their testing. But, what can you do?? We base our pool care system on accurate testing and only adding what the pool needs, when it needs it. To do that you need your own accurate test kit. Order a TF100 and at least include the XL option. That will give you what you need while you are clearing the pool, and probably enough reagents for a couple of years normal use.

    While you wait for it to get delivered, you have a homework assignment. Start with Turning Your Green Swamp Back into a Sparkling Oasis
    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: Algae out of control

    Welcome to TFP! First you need to invest in your own test kit. We recommend the TF 100 linked in my signature as well as the Taylor K2006. You will get more bang for your buck with the TF 100.

    We don't shock here. We follow the SLAM process.

    SLAMing Your Pool

    Also please read through these and familiarize tour self with them.

    ABC's of Pool Water Chem

    Chlorine CYA Chart


    Recommended Levels

    PoolMath
    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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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Algae out of control

    Hi Ruff.jay! Boy do we have suggestion.
    1 - Stay out of the pool store. They will drive you nuts and waste your $$
    2 - Get yourself one of the recommended test kits (see my TF-100 link below); it is the foundation for everything you do! It's a MUST-HAVE.
    3 - Take a few moments to read the other links in my signature below - especially SLAM and Chlorine/CYA levels since you will need to SLAM real soon.
    4 - Please update your profile (settings/signature) to include all of your pool info; it helps TFP tremendously when trying to help you.

    Welcome to TFP!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Bwaahaahaa. Look at all these posts/replies that pop-up at the same time on a new post. Like fire-ants on a reply. Cracks me up.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Re: Algae out of control

    How long to I maintain? It has been above 15 for 4 days with no change in color.

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Algae out of control

    The "SLAM" method needs to be maintained until the following 3 items are met:
    A. CC is 0.5 or lower;
    B. You pass an OCLT (ie overnight FC loss test shows a loss of 1.0 ppm or less);
    C. And the water is clear.

    Problem is we really don't know what your accurate readings are at this point. Best we can do is advise you on an approximate amount of bleach to put in your pool each day until you receive a proper test kit of your own. Only with accurate readings can we optimize the SLAM process. Every pool is different. It may take a couple days or up to and over a week to SLAM. Just depends on how bad your water is.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Task's Avatar
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    Re: Algae out of control

    you have to maintain as long as it takes to get the water crystal clear, pass on oclt and your cc's are .5 or less.

    you won't even know what FC level to maintain until you get some accurate test results to determine your CYA level. The CYA level of the water will determine your SLAM level.
    16'x32' Inground Vinyl, 21,100 gallons, Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump, Hayward Pro Series S244T 3.1ft Sand Filter
    TFTestKits, Pool School, ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry, Chlorine/CYA Chart, PoolMath

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    Re: Algae out of control

    Until you pass all 3 criteria for the SLAM
    1. Crystal clear water
    2. Pass the OLCT with a overnight loss of 1 ppm or less
    3. Have a CC of .5 or lower

    This is a process that does not clear up overnight.
    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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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Algae out of control

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruff.jay View Post
    How long to I maintain? It has been above 15 for 4 days with no change in color.
    As other have said, it takes as long as it takes.

    But, it was also pointed out the shock level is determined by the amount of stabilizer in the pool. 15 is shock level ONLY if your CYA is 30 or below. If your CYA is in high double digits then shock moves up considerably. Check out the CYA/FC chart to see the numbers.

    If your shock level is higher than 15 you are killing algae, just not faster than they can reproduce. Under good conditions an algae colony can double in size in just a few hours.
    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: Algae out of control

    With a new to me ,used pool how will I know if my filter is working properly? I had it blue at one point but didn't keep the chlorine level up high enough to maintain slam level, and it returned to green. I don't know how much chlorine to buy to maintain levels it seems I have added a lot of chemicals with no results. I will have to wait for next payday to get chemicals and test kit

    - - - Updated - - -

    CYA is below 30
    24 in round above ground pool with sand filter

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Algae out of control

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruff.jay View Post
    CYA is below 30
    How was that determined? The pool store consistently told me mine was 80. When I got my test kit it was over 200.
    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: Algae out of control

    I'd suggest you click on the Pool School link at the top of the page and start familiarizing yourself with the basic "Ingredients" of pool care and learning the methods taught on this forum. It will be a bit overwhelming at first, but once you get it, you'll be well on your way to a crystal clear pool and most importantly, free from the shackles of the pool store and the large amounts of money they will take from your pocket. In the mean time, don't put anymore chemicals into your pool, except for a gallon or two of liquid bleach per day until you can get one of the recommended test kits and some reliable test results so you can accurately SLAM the pool.
    16'x32' Inground Vinyl, 21,100 gallons, Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump, Hayward Pro Series S244T 3.1ft Sand Filter
    TFTestKits, Pool School, ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry, Chlorine/CYA Chart, PoolMath

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    Re: Algae out of control

    pool store I don't have any other testing methods at this time
    Should I stop adding chlorine until I get a test kit?

    - - - Updated - - -

    How much bleach each day to stay at slam level?
    24 in round above ground pool with sand filter

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    Task's Avatar
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    Re: Algae out of control

    Liquid bleach is chlorine. It is sold in various concentrations but you can usually get a gallon for between $2 - $3. Much cheaper then the stuff you are buying at the pool store. Add a gallon or two a day until you can get one of the recommended test kits and some reliable test results.

    A pool store CYA reading of 30 is not reliable at all. Their test results are notoriously incorrect, especially their CYA test results.

    We won't know your SLAM level until you get an accurate CYA test result.
    16'x32' Inground Vinyl, 21,100 gallons, Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump, Hayward Pro Series S244T 3.1ft Sand Filter
    TFTestKits, Pool School, ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry, Chlorine/CYA Chart, PoolMath

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    Re: Algae out of control

    Got my test kit and my cya is under 30
    Ch I has been 15 over 10 for weeks
    Pool is green
    Ph7.4
    Alk 125
    I was wondering if I need new sand in my filter to clear up te algae

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Algae out of control

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruff.jay View Post
    Got my test kit and my cya is under 30
    Ch I has been 15 over 10 for weeks
    Pool is green
    Ph7.4
    Alk 125
    I was wondering if I need new sand in my filter to clear up te algae
    Algae is a water chemistry issue, not a filtration issue. The solution is to read the directions on SLAMing your pool in the How To section of Pool School and follow that procedure completely to the end.

    * CC is 0.5 or lower;
    * You pass an OCLT (ie overnight FC loss test shows a loss of 1.0 ppm or less);
    * The water is clear.

    When all three are true, you are done SLAMing and can allow the FC to drift down to normal levels.
    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: Algae out of control

    Update: my pool is getting clearer every day, but it is still green and not sparkling. I have been SLAMing for weeks now and although I have more results than I got from the pool store it is still green. Is there a way to speed up the process? I have had the pool open for over a month and my kids would like to go swimming. I don't want to let them in because the chlorine level is so high.
    24 in round above ground pool with sand filter

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    Re: Algae out of control

    pictures please.

    silly question, are you sure the water is green? mine looks green, but if I take a glass of it out it is actually blue. my fiberglass has a tan tint to it that makes my water look green.
    Bob - Palm Beach by San Juan Pools. approx 5000 gals., Pentair 320 cartridge filter (all new guts installed by me), Goldline SWG, 'New to me' Kreepy Krauly Sand Shark, Intermec 104 Timer Test kit: TF-100 w/Speed Stir

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Algae out of control

    While it may seem forever, it's really been a week and a half. Some SLAM's take several weeks.

    But, to make it go as fast as possible:

    * Test and adjust the chlorine to SLAM level multiple times a day. Two is the minimum, but five or six are better. At least one hour between additions.

    * Brush the pool well once each day. Don't forget hidden spots like the bottom of ladders. We had one poor soul find out this week that their ladder had a hidden compartment in the bottom step that held weights to hold it down. Whe that compartment was opened it was full of algae contaminating the pool.

    Stick with it. Any time the chlorine is below shock/SLAM level is time that not only are you killing enough algae, it may be reproducing.

    How is the water testing going? What is the droip in FC between additions?
    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: Algae out of control

    Quote Originally Posted by tim5055 View Post
    While it may seem forever, it's really been a week and a half. Some SLAM's take several weeks.

    But, to make it go as fast as possible:

    * Test and adjust the chlorine to SLAM level multiple times a day. Two is the minimum, but five or six are better. At least one hour between additions.

    * Brush the pool well once each day. Don't forget hidden spots like the bottom of ladders. We had one poor soul find out this week that their ladder had a hidden compartment in the bottom step that held weights to hold it down. Whe that compartment was opened it was full of algae contaminating the pool.

    Stick with it. Any time the chlorine is below shock/SLAM level is time that not only are you killing enough algae, it may be reproducing.

    How is the water testing going? What is the droip in FC between additions?

    I am testing twice a day once in the morning before work and once at night I am not losing much chlorine during the day unless it is very sunny and overnight I am around 2ppm depending on the night. I am brushing every other day when I vacuum or when I have time. I will also remove my ladder as it is held in by standing water weight.
    I'll post progression photos
    24 in round above ground pool with sand filter

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