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Thread: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

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    Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Hello all fellow Pool Owners,
    I am struggling through my 4th season with my pool and looking for some help. Here are the pool details.
    20x44 inground vinyl lined pool with Auto Cover.
    Pentair Intelliflo Pump.
    Pentair Sand Dollar 28" 350lb Sand Filter with a fresh batch of Dryden's Activate filter glass.
    Pentair 250k Heater.
    Pentair Intellitouch Panel.
    Dolphin M400 Robotic Cleaner.

    The pool has been used with Pool RX Minerals and a Green Smart Ionizer Type system for the last 3 seasons. I have decided to switch over to a normal Chlorine system this year but have had nothing but trouble. First I opened the pool myself and added liquid chlorine at a slower than recommended dose according to the product label. Things were going okay but as I added more chlorine the water started turning greenish brown. I have battled this in the past due to low levels (.9) of Iron in my well water but I use an Iron filter when I add water which normally works. I have been dealing with the pool guys that I had build it but we have come up with no solutions that can get the water cleared up. I have tried many different chemicals and tactics with no good results.

    Today the water tested as follows,
    FC .84
    TC 2.46
    Comb Chl 1.62
    PH 7.9
    Hard 340
    Alk 122
    CA 3
    Copper 0
    Iron 0.2

    Through many hours of cleaning, reading and frustrations I am turning to the online community for some help.

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Welcome!

    Tell me... does the pool look like coffee?

    That's actually not so bad. If Iron is precipitating, you can filter it out and be rid of it for keeps.

    Look at pictures in these threads and see if you don't get inspired. If you do, do what they did.
    A Tale of Two Filters... and Ugly, Rusty Water.
    Just got Taylor-2006 Test Kit. Want to verify what I should add.

    There may be more. Try the search box up in the right corner

    I might as well be the first to tell you, if you're ready to try our methods and stop getting reamed by the pool stores, you'll need your own proper test kit.
    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: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Thanks for the reply, I do have a decent test kit from Leslie's and I also have the pool guy that built the pool use their computer testing equipment which generally have the same result. I have dealt with the iron from day 1 (caused stains on the liner as it was being filled for the first time which is still there) but for the first 3 seasons I was using a non chlorine system called Green Smart along with the Pool RX mineral pills with limited success. I had to use non chlorine shock because the water would turn dark brownish for a few days then when I would backwash the waste water would look like tomato soup. I have used just about every "metal free" product on the market over the last three years finding that Natural Chemistry Metal Free to be the most effective. Currently the pool is not as dark as it has been but it is still a cloudy brownish green and it has been 3 days since I added chlorine. This year I have tried liquid chlorine, Metal Free, a Flock treatment, Jacks Magic, CuLator Metal remover, switched to Dryden's Activate Filter Glass and the latest was Natural Chemistry Pool First Aid on the recommendation of the pool builder. The reason I wanted to switch to chlorine was that last year towards the end of the season the water just would not stay clear and clean and the manufacture of the "Non Chlorine" system was having me a add chlorine tab to the skimmer and replace as needed. My pool builder really has not been any help just usually just another "magic" potion that doesn't work.
    20x44 Inground Vinyl Liner, 40,000 Gal. Pentair Intelliflo Pump, Intellitouch Panel, Max Temp 250 Heater, 350lb Sand Dollar Filter, Auto Cover, Dolphin M400 Robot, Dr. Dryden's Activate Glass Filter Media. Former Green Smart and Pool RX system switching to Chlorine

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    Swampwoman's Avatar
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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Welcome. Your problems could be twofold -- with FC level that low, you could be battling algae as well. So is it clear but tinted water or is it murky? Can you post a pic?

    I have an iron laden wll too, but without a Taylor k2006 or TFT100 test kit, I'd have a heck of a time managing it -- those are the only two tests that can read high chlorine levels above 10. Please consider the upgrade to gain contol of your pool (You can get either here -- the TFT is the better deal in terms of volune if reagents: http://www.tftteskits.net)

    To follow the TFP method to clear/SLAM, treat metals, and treat stains all/each require a series of steps over time with controlled readings and additions so I can't give you much immediate assistance.

    One thing you can do right now is get your PH under control...7.9 is way too high for metals. Lower it to 7.2 using muriatic acid.

    Another thing if you're going to use chlorine/bleach is to add 30 ppm of CYA (unless you CA 3 was a typo and you meant 30).

    When using sequestrants like Metal Magic, the chlorine needs to be low, and in your case the dose should be arrived at by using the sponge test on the Proteam site. Eg. In my case, 5 bottles worked. Treatment even is according to metal levels. http://www.proteampoolcare.com/image...SpongeTest.pdf

    Also remember that your ionizer was also adding metals, so whether your pool guy's meter read it or not, its a safe bet its there.

    Let us know what you decide to do. We can hlp get you there if you have the right tools
    In ground extended Grecian, 22,000 gal, Hayward 220t sand filter, vinyl liner, dolphin m4 supreme.
    If TFP has helped you, please click to SUPPORT TFP!
    Helpful Links:
    GET A TEST KIT Chlorine/CYA Chart How to SLAM About Metals & Stains

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    Casey's Avatar
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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Agree with swampwoman that with your high CC reading, you may also have algae and have more metals in the water than you think. You really need To consider getting the TF100 if you want to follow the TFPC way.
    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: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Thanks for the reply's.
    I had the pool off for two separate treatments in the last 2-3 weeks for a flock and shock which was around 3 days and then for a filter media change that was another 3 days (turned back on Tuesday 6/2/15 so I had not added any muriatic acid to lower the ph when I saw it has high.

    I added acid last night now ph-7.0, TA 120, CH 250, FC 0, CA 3.

    I also put some paper towels in the skimmers last night and have changed them 2 times already (used panty hose and poly fill in the past).

    I did some searching and found liquid chlorine (12.5%) at Menards for $1.99 gal. so I picked up a few.

    I have decided to get the CA up around 35 to start (added 11lbs) then once I see the number after circulation I plan on raising the FC to SLAM it and see how it goes from there.

    Test kit ordered today.

    I have tried many things on my own over the last 3 seasons since I usually find better solutions on the web than my pool builder can give me and the next closest pool company really won't deal with me since they were my other choice when building the pool and they still are mad I did not choose them (probably should have though).

    It is always funny when speaking with a pool store or builder and you mention that you figured out a better solution with regular chemicals or items than they can give and it cost a lot less with better results.

    Has anyone used either Culator or MetalTrap with any success?

    Thanks for all the great info on TFP I am almost looking forward to getting my pool straightened out after all the failed and frustrating attempts I have made so far.
    20x44 Inground Vinyl Liner, 40,000 Gal. Pentair Intelliflo Pump, Intellitouch Panel, Max Temp 250 Heater, 350lb Sand Dollar Filter, Auto Cover, Dolphin M400 Robot, Dr. Dryden's Activate Glass Filter Media. Former Green Smart and Pool RX system switching to Chlorine

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Use the search box for culator and the other and see what comes up. I know there was at least one test on one.
    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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    Swampwoman's Avatar
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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    I have decided to get the CA up around 35 to start (added 11lbs) then once I see the number after circulation I plan on raising the FC to SLAM it and see how it goes from there.
    Don't wait on the CYA test to get FC in there...it won't read for a week! Assume 30 is there and at first dose to "normal" levels now: add enough bleach/chlorine to get to the FC level for the CYA added -- dose to the high range (eg 7 ppm) and never let the amount drop below 3 ppm at 30 CYA.

    BEFORE YOU SLAM (Shock Level And Maintain)

    What test kit do you have, or have you ordered one of the ones we mentioned? Most kits can't read FC over 10, so its impossible to follow the TFP Slam method. Please read the links in my signature.

    Secondly, I would suggest confirming you NEED a slam before slamming with metals, because you will exacerbate the color tint -- metals oxidize from high ph And/Or "shock" aka SLAM levels of chlorine. If you need to, fine. Do the overnight chlorine loss step to see.
    In ground extended Grecian, 22,000 gal, Hayward 220t sand filter, vinyl liner, dolphin m4 supreme.
    If TFP has helped you, please click to SUPPORT TFP!
    Helpful Links:
    GET A TEST KIT Chlorine/CYA Chart How to SLAM About Metals & Stains

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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    I added enough CA to put me in the 35 ppm range and added another Gal on chlorine slowly (drilled 1/8" hole in the lid then flipped it upside down and drilled 3 in the bottom for air. That worked good and I will build a bracket to hold a gal. jug so I don't have to. I ordered the TFT100 kit yesterday. My pool has an Automatic Cover so it only sees the sun when we open it to either use or clean. I think that it will help with chlorine loss. I will plan on raising the FC level when I get back home today. It should in theory be around 3 today. I have also left the paper towels in the skimmer and it is still collecting my "tomato soup" mixture.

    Thanks again
    20x44 Inground Vinyl Liner, 40,000 Gal. Pentair Intelliflo Pump, Intellitouch Panel, Max Temp 250 Heater, 350lb Sand Dollar Filter, Auto Cover, Dolphin M400 Robot, Dr. Dryden's Activate Glass Filter Media. Former Green Smart and Pool RX system switching to Chlorine

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    DaninFLA's Avatar
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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Quote Originally Posted by 1swiftmaverick View Post
    I added enough CA to put me in the 35 ppm range and added another Gal on chlorine slowly (drilled 1/8" hole in the lid then flipped it upside down and drilled 3 in the bottom for air. That worked good and I will build a bracket to hold a gal. jug so I don't have to. I ordered the TFT100 kit yesterday. My pool has an Automatic Cover so it only sees the sun when we open it to either use or clean. I think that it will help with chlorine loss. I will plan on raising the FC level when I get back home today. It should in theory be around 3 today. I have also left the paper towels in the skimmer and it is still collecting my "tomato soup" mixture.

    Thanks again

    you don't need to pour chlorine in that slow. just pour from the bottle in front of return jet and you are done. keep the cover off, it will help the pool gas off and remove CC. the chlorine loss is due to algae/organics. you gotta kill it and its gonna take a lot of chlorine to do 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;

  11. Back To Top    #11

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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    D,
    I am just trying to follow the pour slowly directions from here plus every time I have just dumped it I get the brown water problem, just trying to tackle one issue at a time.
    Normally we have the cover open when we are home but since I don't have a fence the cover has to be closed when we are not watching it.
    I am just switching over to chlorine this season from an Ionizer type system so I have not added that much chlorine since most times when I add it the water "fights" back.
    Thanks
    20x44 Inground Vinyl Liner, 40,000 Gal. Pentair Intelliflo Pump, Intellitouch Panel, Max Temp 250 Heater, 350lb Sand Dollar Filter, Auto Cover, Dolphin M400 Robot, Dr. Dryden's Activate Glass Filter Media. Former Green Smart and Pool RX system switching to Chlorine

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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Just to update
    The water is clearing up nicely (able to see my drains again)
    I am waiting for the TFT100 kit to arrive so I can get my numbers posted, should have it on Friday.
    Since adding MA to lower PH and TA I have turned my 3 return jets up to the surface for aeration, seems to be a very nice controlled way to adjust PH.
    My CYA should test around 35 once it shows up (added 11lbs of granular in the skimmers slowly) on Sunday.
    The FC should be 7-8 according to Pool Math (current test only goes to 5).
    Still using paper towels in the skimmers to collect iron.
    Thanks to everyone in the TFP community for being so generous and sharing their knowledge and advise throughout the entire site.
    20x44 Inground Vinyl Liner, 40,000 Gal. Pentair Intelliflo Pump, Intellitouch Panel, Max Temp 250 Heater, 350lb Sand Dollar Filter, Auto Cover, Dolphin M400 Robot, Dr. Dryden's Activate Glass Filter Media. Former Green Smart and Pool RX system switching to Chlorine

  13. Back To Top    #13
    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    So the paper towels are working? Do they look like this?
    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: Water turning Brownish Green after adding Chlorine

    Yes they are working.
    Wow those are nasty.
    Mine are not that bad.
    I also have had success with knee high panty hose stuffed with polyfill.
    20x44 Inground Vinyl Liner, 40,000 Gal. Pentair Intelliflo Pump, Intellitouch Panel, Max Temp 250 Heater, 350lb Sand Dollar Filter, Auto Cover, Dolphin M400 Robot, Dr. Dryden's Activate Glass Filter Media. Former Green Smart and Pool RX system switching to Chlorine

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