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Thread: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

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    Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    I just added 4lbs of pH up (Sodium Carbonate 100%) to my pool by mistake (thought I grabbed a bottle of stabilizer instead). My pH was 7.8 yesterday (according to Leslie's). My test the day before showed 8.1(ish). I just did it, so I haven't done a another test yet. I'm fairly new to TFP and this concept. I attempted it last year, but didn't fully read everything and went back to the pool store. So, I've never posted here before and I hope I'm giving you enough info. Bare with me as I get up to speed.

    Here were my readings yesterday from Leslie's

    FC 2
    TC 2
    CH 200
    CYA 0 (this is what I was trying to address when I added the pH by mistake, I meant to add stabilizer (cyanuric acid 100%)
    TA 60
    pH 7.8
    Copper 0
    Iron 0
    Phosphates 0

    My readings from 2 days ago with my test kits (I'm still learning how to read everything on my kit)

    CC 1.0-2.0
    FC .6 +/-
    Brom 2.2
    pH 8.0-8.2
    Acid Demand 2
    TA 120

    I'm assuming I will need to add some muriatic acid to bring my pH down (I had already add about 1 pints the night before last). I added a gallon of liquid chlorine yesterday morning before going to the pool store.

    If I need to add muriatic acid, how long do I need to wait after I added the pH up?
    Doughboy above ground round pool, 37x4.5, 17,100 gallons. Doughboy sand filter and pump.

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    How did you add the pH up? If you poured it in the skimmer, I would backwash the filter to eliminate any that may be in the filter.

    After that, I would add some acid now.

    You need to work on your own testing and stop going to Leslie's. Verify the CYA with your test before you add any and use Pool Math to calculate how much you need to add. Add CYA to get to about half your goal via the sock method. CYA should not be poured in a skimmer or broadcast over the water, but place it in an old sock and hang it in front of a return.
    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: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    About 20 oz of muriatic should get your pH down to around 7.5. Pump running, get that in and then test again in 30 minutes, making adjustment as necessary.

    As Tim says, you should stay out of the Pool Store and learn to do your own testing. No one cares more about your pool than you do.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    I broadcast the pH increaser in. I went to Leslies because my kit doesn't test CYA and I need liquid chlorine. I've read everything here and I know they aren't reliable, but I needed to know my CYA level and I can't buy a new test kit right now.

    Do I put the CYA in now in the sock even while adding muriatic acid?

    Quote Originally Posted by tim5055 View Post
    How did you add the pH up? If you poured it in the skimmer, I would backwash the filter to eliminate any that may be in the filter.

    After that, I would add some acid now.

    You need to work on your own testing and stop going to Leslie's. Verify the CYA with your test before you add any and use Pool Math to calculate how much you need to add. Add CYA to get to about half your goal via the sock method. CYA should not be poured in a skimmer or broadcast over the water, but place it in an old sock and hang it in front of a return.
    - - - Updated - - -
    Last edited by mrsvia; 06-07-2015 at 12:23 PM. Reason: replied to wrong message
    Doughboy above ground round pool, 37x4.5, 17,100 gallons. Doughboy sand filter and pump.

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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    Thanks Dave,

    I added the muriatic acid and just tested again. It's still about an 8. I added about 16 more ounces. I'll test in again in 30.

    I'm learning to do my own testing, but my kit doesn't test CYA, so going to Leslie's was better than not having it in there. I figured it was 0, but needed to be sure before adding. A new test kit is on my next shopping list.

    BTW...my pool is still extremely cloudy. Will that go away once everything is in balance?

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    Doughboy above ground round pool, 37x4.5, 17,100 gallons. Doughboy sand filter and pump.

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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    BTW...my pool is still extremely cloudy. Will that go away once everything is in balance?
    No, you will need to SLAM that pool and that involves a test kit that will save you money....not cost you.

    Leslie's might appear to be a better deal but it is not. Keep reading the forum.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    No, you will need to SLAM that pool and that involves a test kit that will save you money....not cost you.

    Leslie's might appear to be a better deal but it is not. Keep reading the forum.
    Thanks for your help. I don't think Leslie's is a better deal. I just wanted to know my CYA Level. I have read the forum for weeks, before starting. I got the wrong test kit, simply mistake and then added the wrong chemical. I'm new to pool maintenance, just trying to figure it all out. I know what is recommended here (re: test kits and chemicals). I needed liquid chlorine (which I've already explained) and a test of CYA (until I get the new test kit). I will try not to post here in the future.
    Doughboy above ground round pool, 37x4.5, 17,100 gallons. Doughboy sand filter and pump.

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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    I do not think anyone here is trying to dissuade from posting here. We just want you to take the correct steps to rid your life of pool frustrations.

    Unfortunately SLAMing requires you to have the proper test kit. And that is what is going to clear your pool. It is required because a standard kit can not measure the chlorine levels required for a slam. You would be going in blindly.
    6425g Intex Ultraframe 18'x48" AG
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    All 3 replies indicated that I should not have gone to Leslie's and that I needed to test my own water and the final reply told me to read the forum.

    I explained twice why I went to Leslie's (for a CYA test and liquid chlorine). I know I'm getting a bit defensive here, but I've fought with this pool for weeks (started with equipment issues from installers not setting up filter and pump with lubricated O-rings). We didn't close or cover the pool at the end of last summer because my husband had a kidney transplant in the middle of the summer and he couldn't help me close it and I can't do it by myself. He can't handle the chemicals and he has always relied on pool stores. I made the decision to switch to this method and I'm trying to get it all straight. Admonishing me 3 seperate posts over going to Leslie's and having the wrong test kit, doesn't help me figure out how to correct the mistake I made by adding pH up instead of stabilizer. I've never made that kind of mistake before (both are in the same bottle, we went to Wal-Mart to get stabilizer as I have borax and baking soda that I purchased in bulk for everything else). I didn't realize that instead of buying 2 bottles of stabilizer, we bought a bottle of pH increaser and a bottle of stabilizer. I grabbed the wrong bottle this morning and headed out to add the CYA and hopefully finally get the pool where it needed to be and now I've made it worse.

    My main point of posting was
    1. find out how quickly I could add muriatic acid after adding the pH increaser (in error)
    2. how soon after adding the muriatic acid could I add the CYA (the original chemical I intended to add)
    3. would all of that require slamming the pool (when to try to do that).

    A simple, "No your pool won't clear up until you slam it and to do that requires a recommended test kit" would have sufficed.

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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    You have to realize that it becomes kind of a standard answer around here to tell people to stay away from the pool store. Especially when it comes to getting their water tested and for advise. Even the CYA question is valid to answer this way because the result you recieved is very possible to be inaccurate. It takes a lot of repeating because many do no want to spend the $$, and it is really necessary.

    To answer your questions though.
    1. After about 30-60 minutes. I would say immediately, but you need time for the MA to mix so you can accurately measure the pH to know how much to reduce.
    2. Normally you need 30 minutes between chems. CYA is the exception. Put it in a sock and put it in your skimmer or in front of a return. You can do this immediately.
    3. SLAM needs to take place ASAP. Again you can't SLAM without proper testing, so it will have to wait until you get a proper test kit.
    6425g Intex Ultraframe 18'x48" AG
    Stock 1500gph cartridge filter / Intex SWG CG-28669 with E.C.O.
    Install date: 5/26/2015
    TF-100
    Helpful Links

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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    General rule of thumb: thirty minutes with the pump on between chemical additions. Brushing the pool to set up some cross currents helps mix things even better. The lone exception is the CYA granules because they take so long to dissolve. You can add acid to lower pH, then go fumble with the CYA and the sock while that's mixing, then retest pH again and add more acid if needed, wait thirty minutes...

    Take the pH adjustment in steps, don't try all at once.
    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.
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    This is the test kit I have (Poolmaster 22260 5-Way Test Kit with Case - Basic Collection). Are there kits just for the things this one is missing or do I need to purchase the entire TAYLOR TECHNOLOGIES INC K-2006 TEST KIT COMP CHLORINE FAS-DPD?
    Doughboy above ground round pool, 37x4.5, 17,100 gallons. Doughboy sand filter and pump.

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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    You need a FAS-DPD test.
    http://tftestkits.net/FAS-DPD-Chlori...-test-p47.html

    You also need to be able to test your own CYA.
    http://tftestkits.net/CYA-Cyanuric-Acid-Test-p48.html

    That is about the same price as a K-2006.
    6425g Intex Ultraframe 18'x48" AG
    Stock 1500gph cartridge filter / Intex SWG CG-28669 with E.C.O.
    Install date: 5/26/2015
    TF-100
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    Are you using Pool School - PoolMath to calculate how much chemicals to add? I can't tell if you are or not. It would be easier and more accurate if you do.
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    I know it can be hard when you're new and people seem to be a little bit scolding - it sucks, but they are just trying to help so don't stop posting. We all mess up, I'm new too and I screwed up big time as well. I would listen to Richard up above for your Ph and CYA adjustments - he seems to have a lot of respect around the forum and is very direct at answering questions without being condescending. As far as test kits, if you have some testing reagents already for Ph and such, you can add to it by ordering the FAS-DPD and others online. But I get that these might not be something in your budget right now given the recent medical issues you're husband has had. I hope things are looking up for you both.
    Bonnie

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

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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    Most new posters are reluctant to spend the money on the right test kit .... I know i was!

    But after buying in to the idea that in order to properly balance pool water it is necessary to have an accurate reading of all of the various things we watch I am so happy that I did.

    Instead of spending hundreds of dollars to open the pool i only put in what i know is needed and once i get it going it costs me about $1 per day for chlorine.

    So not only do I save money but i understand my pool and I can honestly say my pool has never been cleaner than it is now..... nor has the water ever been more balanced.

    Join us and you will be happy you did!
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    Thanks all for your help. I'm not reluctant to buy the correct test kit. Yesterday was Sunday and most pool stores are closed around here on Sunday. I was hoping to get one local and not have to order online and wait (since my pool needed immediate attention, I thought I had at least enough to correct everything like pH and CYA yesterday). I will order (or find locally) a recommended test kit today, so I can get everything where it needs to be to start Slamming the pool as soon as possible (I would like to start enjoying the pool instead of fighting with it.) I wouldn't be here trying this method if I didn't already believe in the the concept. Just have made a few misteps getting started. It's a lot to take in and remember when you're getting everything together. I thought after reading everything multiple times that I had everything I needed and didn't realize my test kit was inadequate. I was so focused on finding and obtaining the correct chemicals that I overlooked that important piece. Believe me, we hate Leslie's (and most of the other pool places we've been in. Before finding this page, we had gone to every big and small place in town to find someone that took time to give us the right stuff). That is what led me here. I'm more than willing to never step foot in a pool store again (but it's one of the only places to get liquid chlorine, except Lowe's, but the PS is cheaper).

    I'm getting there. Thanks for all the advice and help. Once I have everything I need and have accurate readings from my own kit, I will post again. For now, I'm going to wait before adding anything further.
    Doughboy above ground round pool, 37x4.5, 17,100 gallons. Doughboy sand filter and pump.

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    ship of fools's Avatar
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    Quote Originally Posted by mrsvia View Post
    Thanks all for your help. I'm not reluctant to buy the correct test kit. Yesterday was Sunday and most pool stores are closed around here on Sunday. I was hoping to get one local and not have to order online and wait (since my pool needed immediate attention, I thought I had at least enough to correct everything like pH and CYA yesterday). I will order (or find locally) a recommended test kit today, so I can get everything where it needs to be to start Slamming the pool as soon as possible (I would like to start enjoying the pool instead of fighting with it.) I wouldn't be here trying this method if I didn't already believe in the the concept. Just have made a few misteps getting started. It's a lot to take in and remember when you're getting everything together. I thought after reading everything multiple times that I had everything I needed and didn't realize my test kit was inadequate. I was so focused on finding and obtaining the correct chemicals that I overlooked that important piece. Believe me, we hate Leslie's (and most of the other pool places we've been in. Before finding this page, we had gone to every big and small place in town to find someone that took time to give us the right stuff). That is what led me here. I'm more than willing to never step foot in a pool store again (but it's one of the only places to get liquid chlorine, except Lowe's, but the PS is cheaper).

    I'm getting there. Thanks for all the advice and help. Once I have everything I need and have accurate readings from my own kit, I will post again. For now, I'm going to wait before adding anything further.

    The shipping is FAST! .... Support the board and buy it here if at all possible.

    You will most likely want the XL option with more reagents and the Speed Stir is well worth the $.

    It's still early in the summer .... get this rolling and you will be swimming in no time
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    Yes, it is definitely a lot to take in. I had to read it all 30 or 40 times before I got it all figured out. Now it is a breeze!
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: Help added pH increaser by mistake!

    An update:

    I finally got my pH down and my CYA up. The pool is starting to clear up (finally as of this morning). I don't have my full test kit yet, but I can test for FC, CC, pH, and TA. Yesterday when I got home around 6 pm(ish). I checked my levels. I don't have the paper I wrote everything on with me at work, but my chlorine was pale, pale yellow (barely noticeable) on either FC and/or CC. pH was around 7.2/7.3 and I don't recall what the TA was and CYA was between 30/40. I put 4 gallons of liquid chlorine in and the chlorine level came up to about 16 after about an hour. I brushed as best I could, but water was still milky/cloudy at this point.

    Around midnight I checked again and chlorine was back down to almost unreadable. I poured in 4 more gallons and got chlorine back up to 12-14. I checked again around 1 am and chlorine was hanging in there around 12/14. I checked again at 2:30 am and still seemed to be hanging in the higher range.

    This morning, I checked again around 7 am, once again, chlorine level was pale pale yellow, barely readable.

    I was out of liquid chlorine and needed to pick some up. I decided that since I don't have my kit to check all my levels I would take a sample with me to a small mom and pop pool place (I know, I know it's still a pool store, but they carry bulk baking soda and liquid chlorine and have even discussed TFP with me, so I thought going to them was better than Leslie's). Here are their numbers:

    FC = 0
    TC = 0.17
    CC = 0.17
    pH = 7.4
    CH = 156
    TA = 129
    CYA = 30
    Copper = 0
    Iron = 0.2
    Borate = 12

    I have 8 more gallons of liquid chlorine. The guy there agreed with what I've read here, to just keep adding chlorine and checking and adjusting until it maintains.

    My question. I don't "see" anything that looks like algae and I've never had algae (that I know of). This is our 3rd summer with the pool and I've never had this much trouble. Is it possible that I have algae and don't know it? Is that what is using up my chlorine? Do I just keep doing what I'm doing until it holds steady or do I stop everything until I get the new kit? I really want to use my pool, but I understand that it just might not be possible.
    Doughboy above ground round pool, 37x4.5, 17,100 gallons. Doughboy sand filter and pump.

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