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Thread: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

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    Spice914's Avatar
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    Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    Hi all - new to the forum, probably my first post but I've been lurking around a while with much success until now...sorry so long of a post...

    Took pool cover off on the 18th to a swamp, complete with tadpoles, which was expected. We had a couple of really bad wind storms this winter that ripped the cover off and almost apart.

    Initial Tests:
    CYA 80
    FC 0
    CC 10? (not sure I did this test right)
    Ph 7.5
    TA 300
    CH 100
    SW 2700

    Things seemed to be in line as far as CYA and Ph so I started the SLAM. Added 6 - 121 oz Costco pack bottles of Clorox 8.25% and started scrubbing and vacuuming. Pulled up a minor ton of pine needles (we are surrounded by evergreens). Got the FC up to 21 on the 20th, forgot we were headed out camping for Memorial Day Weekend, so added 3 more 121 oz. bottles, covered it, crossed my fingers and left. Got back on Monday, took the cover off and almost passed out from the fumes. It just smelled wrong, like ammonia instead of chlorine. Hit it again with 3 more bottles (thank god Costco is close) and on Tuesday it read 30 FC. Wasn't looking bad, blue but cloudy and not as stinky. I checked it on the 27th and I'm up to 50 FC. ??? What??? I hadn't added that much, why am I climbing? And I'm still smelling ammonia. I start freaking out thinking I'm doing the test wrong or that I've got old reagent products, maybe I've got an ammonia pool, or even worse (but actually easier to clean up) what if something's dead down there and I haven't found it? So I'm testing, testing, testing, FC is climbing - FC 70 on the 29th, CC 4 and it's turning green, and I'm thinking maybe too much CYA, test that, not sure how accurate in the middle of a SLAM but it's down to 45. Finally yesterday, after one final dose of 6 - 121 oz Costco bottles of Clorox in desperation, thinking I must have an ammonia pool, or I'm trying to disintegrate a dead squirrel in the deep end, dear husband tells me somehow the SWG has been on super chlorinate. ??? Ok, would explain the astronimical 113ppm FC reading I got this morning, and the fact that I can actually smell chlorine now instead of that horrible cat pee smell and the water is now blue but cloudy again. I can see my hand down at least up to almost my shoulder, 2 feet?

    So - with that all said, do I just wait and let the FC come down and continue to vacuum and brush and then continue SLAM as normal? We're on bypass again, which is what I thought we were on before we left but I have no idea how long it's been on super chlorinate. I'm sure I've nuked the liner but it doesn't look bleached out, but it also doesn't feel like any slime is on the sides. Any advice would be appreciated, even the snarky ones since we screwed up.
    Bonnie

    14K, AG, sand, Hayward 1.5hp, Aqua-Rite SWG, 4-12' solar panels, well water

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    Hello Spice! Having one of those days huh ? We all have. First thing to validate ... which test kit are you using. We just want to make sure you're getting good readings. Next, while you are SLAMming leave the SGW off (as you already learned) to save life on your SWG/cell. Continue to monitor your FC levels so they are at or just above the required SLAM level based on the Chlorine/CYA Chart list below in my signature. You're correct to continue scrubbing, sweeping, and vacuuming. Also make sure your pump in still on 24/7 while you SLAM. Now that your SWG is off, perhaps post some new numbers later (tell us which kit you are using) and we'll go from there. We'll help you turn that green to blue in no time.
    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
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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    how did you come up with a FC reading of 113??? I think most test kits only go to 50ppm. If your FC was that high your liner would be bleached out. A SWCG is not going to be able to generate that much FC even if run on 100%. sounds like your tests are incorrect. if something was dead in the pool, your FC would be going to zero, not increasing.
    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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    Spice914's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    Thanks for the quick replies. Am using a Taylor K-2005 kit but have the FAS DPD test for the FC/CC. It's the FAS DPD test I was using that I was getting the high readings from. Something is throwing it off because I know if the FC was actually that high, the liner would be white and I would be able to smell the chlorine from the back door. As it is, you have to almost put your nose in the pool to smell it, but it does have a very faint smell like good chlorine now and it's still blue but cloudy. As of this morning, FC was 95? and CC 2.5. To clarify, am using the FAS DPD at the 10ml mark, adding a heaping spoonful of 870, using Taylor Speedstir (could this be throwing things off?) adding 871 drops from a vertical bottle at a quickened pace with one leg out and pointed west til it turns clear. Then 5 drops of 003 and then more 871 til it goes clear again. So 190 x .5 and 5 x.5 = 95 FC and 2.5 CC. I would be very relieved if it was simply me doing something stupid during the testing process. Thanks in advance!
    Bonnie

    14K, AG, sand, Hayward 1.5hp, Aqua-Rite SWG, 4-12' solar panels, well water

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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    i think your chlorine is higher than the test can test to. they can only go so far. I have the TF-100 test, but they are the same I think. I looked up instructions for that test and it says the highest is 20 ppm?? not sure if that is accurate or not, but that could be an issue.

    test instructions I see online says to use two scoops of the 870? try that and see if it matters.

    just for giggles, try and dilute your water 5:1 and test. i.e. fill to 5ml with pool water, then to 25ml with tap water and mix. then dump into something, refill to the 10 ml line, add the powder, etc and count the drops...do everything the same and then multiply your results by 5. if its somewhere near 15-25ppm (i.e. 75-125ppm) you know your crazy numbers are correct...which I highly doubt
    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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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    The TF-100 can test reliably up to 50ppm.
    And maybe even above.

    If the FC is that high, it also does not sound like you are using enough powder. Maybe try a 50/50 water mix with chlorine free water and use 2 scoops.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    any update?? did you try dilution to verify results? extra scoop of reagent?
    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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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    190 drops? That is the better part of a .75 Oz bottle!

    Review this post: http://www.troublefreepool.com/threads/24188-Extended-Test-Kit-Directions

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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    sorry for the delay, had to work last night.. Tested it this morning using the dilution method you suggested Dan - it took 22 drops so 110ppm? Pool is still blue but cloudy and I just don't see how it can be that high and not be bleaching the liner or the hose. Oh, and I did make sure to use 2 scoops of 870. Double checked the expiration on the FAS DPD and they're good til 2016. All I can think to do now is just trust my eyes and nose and keep brushing and vacuuming until clear (if it ever gets there). We are on well water, could some kind of metals or something else be throwing it off?
    Bonnie

    14K, AG, sand, Hayward 1.5hp, Aqua-Rite SWG, 4-12' solar panels, well water

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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    well Bonnie, I am stumped. where did you buy your test from? I would suggest giving them a call to see what they think

    but, cute puppy in your picture!
    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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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    Quote Originally Posted by Spice914 View Post
    sorry for the delay, had to work last night.. Tested it this morning using the dilution method you suggested Dan - it took 22 drops so 110ppm? Pool is still blue but cloudy and I just don't see how it can be that high and not be bleaching the liner or the hose. Oh, and I did make sure to use 2 scoops of 870. Double checked the expiration on the FAS DPD and they're good til 2016. All I can think to do now is just trust my eyes and nose and keep brushing and vacuuming until clear (if it ever gets there). We are on well water, could some kind of metals or something else be throwing it off?
    Let me see if this is correct...

    you counted 22 drop of 50% pool water and 50% tap water

    so, 22x0.5 = 11 x 2 = 22ppm fc

    I suck at math so someone please let me know if I am correct
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    Seems like you have been adding a ridiculous amount of bleach .... blindly ignoring the test results. Clearly this is never recommended.

    You said you measured a FC of 70ppm with a CYA of 45ppm and then decided to add 6 more bottles?!?!
    That added another 34ppm of FC.

    I suggest you slow down and review the ShockLevelAndMAINTAIN Process and the FC/CYA Chart.

    Likely anything that might have been in the pool is gone at this point ... and maybe you are waiting on the filtration to catch up ... or there is an issue in your filter.

    Have you inspected it and Deep Cleaned your Sand Filter? After that consider trying to Add DE to your Sand Filter.

    - - - Updated - - -

    cowboycasey brings up a good point ... 22 drops * 0.5 = 11ppm ... you do not multiply by 5ppm for each drop ... or was that with a 5:1 dilution?

    Perhaps you should describe your FAS-DPD testing procedure in detail.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    Quote Originally Posted by cowboycasey View Post
    Let me see if this is correct...

    you counted 22 drop of 50% pool water and 50% tap water

    so, 22x0.5 = 11 x 2 = 22ppm fc

    I suck at math so someone please let me know if I am correct
    no, she did a 1:5 dilution, so 22 x 5 at my suggestion. I would probably recommend she keep doing that in order to save on reagent anyways until it comes down.

    no more adding bleach until you get to reasonable FC
    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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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    No, the 5x1 dillution would be 22 x 0.5 = 11ppm x 5 = 55ppm.

    By my count, you added 18 bottles of bleach = 102ppm plus the SWG on super chlorinate over a week.

    With the SWG off and with sun on the pool (the cover is off right?), you should be loosing close to 50% of the FC daily.

    And if the current is 55ppm ... then that is about the drop you saw since yesterday.

    And tomorrow you should be in the 25-35ppm range.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    I got the FAS DPD off Amazon - and yes, I did ignore the test results because as I stated earlier in the original post, it smelled like cat pee. There is no way I had 70 ppm FC with that kind of smell and it turning back to green. This last test, yes, was a 5:1 dilution as Dan recommended. The cover has been off since Sunday, I'm in PNW and it's been raining - don't expect to see sun until tomorrow. Sand filter is only 4 years old, shouldn't need cleaned. Am going to just watch and wait and keep scrubbing.
    Bonnie

    14K, AG, sand, Hayward 1.5hp, Aqua-Rite SWG, 4-12' solar panels, well water

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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    ok, I saw 22 and thought that was ppm, not drops. agree, 22 drops would be 55 ppm. so progress! test again tomorrow. at this point your FC losses are due to algae, not sun burnoff anyway. next time just put in the correct amount of bleach
    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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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    You should clean the filter yearly.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    Thanks guys! - Yes, i put in 15 bottles between the 18th and the 31st, not realizing someone (not gonna say who he might be) had turned on the SWG to superchlorinate. Cover is off - no sun, just lots of rain today, but supposed to be getting some sun back in next few days. I will test and post results again tomorrow since I obviously can't do math. Again, thank you!
    Bonnie

    14K, AG, sand, Hayward 1.5hp, Aqua-Rite SWG, 4-12' solar panels, well water

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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    superchlorinate on the SWCG isn't the cause of the high FC. the SWCG cant make that much chlorine, its high because the chlorine.
    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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    Re: Crazy high FC and a little miscommunication with DH

    Always, always, use your pool math calculator! Have a target based on your CYA. We don't want you to damage your equipment!
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