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Thread: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

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    Unhappy New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    We bought a new home last October (in MN) and it has a inground 30,000 gallon pool. It has a sand filter with a automatic chlorinater. and use the chlorine pucks. We used well water to fill it up to required level but didn't know to use the filter on the hose to help with the iron. To open the pool we were told by the pool guy who was coming to open it for us to use 4 gallons liquid shock (2 one day, 2 the next). He came out on the third day and fired everything up and we then shocked the pool again with 4 lbs of granular shock. Since then we are fighting the free chlorine, just can't get it to a normal level and our total chlorine won't stay at a normal level. Since the opening on May 18th we have gone through 12 gallons liquid shock, a case of granular (Costco brand), 7 lbs pool store brand ulra shock, and 22 lbs Menards brand of shock and still not at the required level!!! We are taking another sample in tonight to see what the levels are but when testing this morning it didn't look good.

    Test 1 May 24th:
    Free Chlorine: .18 (added 8 lbs shock)
    Total Chlorine: 2.44
    Combined Chlorine: 2.26
    pH: 7.5
    Hardness: 156 (added 16 lbs to increase)
    Alkalinity: 111
    Cyanuric Acid: 9
    Copper: .1
    Iron: .2
    Borate: 9

    Test 2 June 2nd:
    Free Chlorine: .31 (added 7 lbs)
    Total Chlorine: 2.36
    Combined Chlorine: 2.05
    pH:6.9
    Hardness: 190
    Alkalinity: 86 (added 17 lbs to increase)
    Cyanuric Acid: 26
    Copper: .1
    Iron: .2
    Borate: 11

    Test 3 June 7th:
    Free Chlorine: .4 (added 10 lbs)
    Total Chlorine: 3.18
    Combined Chlorine: 2.78
    pH: 6.6 (added 2 lbs)
    Hardness: 166 (added 12 lbs)
    Alkalinity: 99 (added 11 lbs)
    Cyanuric Acid: 63
    Copper: .2
    Iron: .2
    Borate: 20
    --Also added a iron reducer and stabalizer.--

    We are at a loss and it is getting REALLY expensive!! Do we simply just keep shocking it every night?

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Welcome to TFP!!

    No, do not keep shocking it - but, you have a decision to make - follow the pool store advice or our advice??

    My first suggestion is to stop going to the pool store. Their only response it to sell you something. 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 around here. 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 to get rid of the stuff in your water consuming the chlorine , and probably enough reagents for a couple of years normal use.

    You have to stop using all forms of solid chlorine. That includes tablets and granular shock. If you notice your CYA level is going up dramatically. You need to be using liquid chlorine. Funny thing, liquid chlorine is sold in every WalMart store for $2.98 a bottle. It's on the laundry isle and it's called bleach.

    To understand what I'm talking about, read these three articles from Pool School :
    ABCs of Water Chemistry
    Recommended Pool Chemicals
    How to Chlorinate Your Pool
    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: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Thank you! I am going to look at the test kits now. How much liquid chlorine would we need to add? We did try 12 gallons of the liquid chlorine shock and that didn't do it either. Thanks for your help!!

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Until you get your test kit I would say add no more than 1 bottle (121oz 8.25%) GreatValu bleach from WalMart each day. We will need test results to move forward, but you will be following the SLAM Process to clear everything up. That process will go through some bleach.
    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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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Welcome SSG! I have the TF-100 and love it. If you do order it, make sure to also request the speed stir and XL size (extra reagent). It's a fantastic product.
    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: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    it is neat to see the pool store results showing the steady descent into CYA problems that their own products and advice are creating.
    Last edited by tim5055; 06-09-2015 at 03:58 PM. Reason: Language
    10,500 gal IG, Topaz Pebble, auto-level
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    Water sheer, 2 wok pots, bubbler stem on the baja step
    ColorLogic Mutlicolor LED lamp. Taylor 2006+speed stir

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    BoDarville's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by tim5055
    ...you have a decision to make - follow the pool store advice or our advice??
    This is very true...The two methods are not compatible.

    I can tell you that I saved over $1,000 in the first full year I managed the pool using the TFP method vs. the more traditional pool-store method. Makes the $68 I invested in the TF-100 seem like a small sum in comparison. Any time I had the opportunity to invest $68 for a return of $1,000 within a year, I would take that investment every time it was offered.

    Oh...BTW...Welcome to TFP!
    Gold Supporter, TFP Lifetime Supporter, 26,680 gal Plaster IGP 3.5 - 10' depth / Attached Waterfall Spa, Manually Chlorinated, Triton Sand Filter, 1.5 HP * 1.1 SF = 1.65 SFHP 1-speed Pentair WhisperFlo WF-26 Pump, 400K BTU NG Teledyne Laars Series One Heater, Polaris 360, Test Kit Comparison, Chlorine/CYA Chart, SLAMing Your Pool, OCLT
    A good test kit is an investment, not an expense.

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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Okay thank you everyone!! Yes I am done with the pool store. The kid behind the counter doesn't seem to care about anything but me buying more product. I will order the test kit! When I get home I will remove the pucks, hopefully we haven't done too much damage that our CYA is too high. Again thank you everyone for all the help and any advice is welcome!!

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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Test kit ordered with the XL option and the speedstir. We have turned off the chlorinater. Dumped 1 gallon Walmart brand bleach (8.25%) in tonight.

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by shellyskygirl View Post
    Test kit ordered with the XL option and the speedstir. We have turned off the chlorinater. Dumped 1 gallon Walmart brand bleach (8.25%) in tonight.
    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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    BoDarville's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by shellyskygirl
    Test kit ordered with the XL option and the speedstir. We have turned off the chlorinater. Dumped 1 gallon Walmart brand bleach (8.25%) in tonight.
    That deserves another
    Gold Supporter, TFP Lifetime Supporter, 26,680 gal Plaster IGP 3.5 - 10' depth / Attached Waterfall Spa, Manually Chlorinated, Triton Sand Filter, 1.5 HP * 1.1 SF = 1.65 SFHP 1-speed Pentair WhisperFlo WF-26 Pump, 400K BTU NG Teledyne Laars Series One Heater, Polaris 360, Test Kit Comparison, Chlorine/CYA Chart, SLAMing Your Pool, OCLT
    A good test kit is an investment, not an expense.

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Great plan of action to get that TF-100 and some good old bleach...but I also suggest removing those pucks from your chlorinator. Not just turning it off, because the water still runs through it, doesn't it?

    Yippee
    My Amazon Smile for November12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
    Our pool build--> Our Pool Solved Our Sloping Yard Skippy's Cheap Pool Cooler -->Skippy's New Fountain

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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Okay got the TF-100 in today and below are my results. Not to sure how accurate the CYA is, I don't have the best eye sight and didn't have the best lighting.
    FC= .5
    CC = 1.5
    Hardness = 400
    TA = 110
    CYA= 80 (??)
    pH = less then 6.8

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by shellyskygirl View Post
    Okay got the TF-100 in today and below are my results. Not to sure how accurate the CYA is, I don't have the best eye sight.
    FC= .5
    CC = 1.5
    Hardness = 400
    TA = 110
    CYA= 80 (??)
    pH = less then 6.8
    When did you conduct the CYA test? It is best conducted on a sunny day with the sun behind you (indirect light) holding the tube at your waist looking directly down the tube. Indoors at night would give you a higher reading.

    In any case, you need chlorine - but you knew that.

    You need to get the pH up. Into,the 7s before you SLAM. I would say use Borax to get it up so you can SLAM. Waiting on aeration is really not a good option. Borax is available as 20 Mule TeamŽ Borax Natural Laundry Booster. It is sold in the laundry detergent section of most larger grocery stores and some big box stores. Borax is best added by pre-dissolving it in a bJacket. Use Pool Math to compute the amount you need, but you may need to do it a,couple,of,times,because you may be well below 6.8.
    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: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    I have two boxes of Borax that I will add tonight. I do believe I will need two more after these two, calculator says 483 oz. Should we add any more bleach tonight when adding the Borax?

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Always wait 30 minutes at least between additions of different chemicals with the pump running. Some chemicals don't play well together, so let them mix well. Yes, mor chlorine please.

    The last pool I dealt with that had very low pH due to continuous chlorination with tabs took several boxes. I took it slow, adding one at a time - waiting 30 minutes and testing again. As with almost everything dealing with pool water, it's easier NOT to add something than to get it back out of the water after you add it.
    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: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Great thank you. We will do that and check back with updated levels in the morning. Thank you!!

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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Last night we added 2 boxes borax at 76 oz each box and 30 minutes later tested still low. We then added 1 gallon (128 oz) bleach at 12.5%.

    6 am this mornings readings:
    FC = 1
    CC = 2
    pH = LOW

    I added 2 more boxes borax. Will be home in 3 hours, I will test again then.
    **Thank you to everyone for the help and advice, in merely a couple of days you all have offered more advice then three weeks of going to the same pool store. So again thank you very much is it greatly appreciated.**

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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Hello Shellyskygirl,
    Welcome to TFP,
    Just hang in there. Here at TFP there are alot of very experienced and knowledgeable people. If you have any questions, just ask.
    Randy H.

    Intex 18' X 48"
    G.A.M.E. Sandpro 75 Sand Filter (Single Speed 3/4 HP, 75 lbs sand, 2650 GPH, 7-way valve)

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Owners with Chlorine Troubles!

    Looking back I see you got the TF-100. SO here's what I see on your latest tests:
    - FC - Too low! Use the poolmath calculator to get that up ASAP. Refer to the Chlorine/CYA chart link in my sig for the correct number. Since you didn't post your current CYA, I can't tell you.
    - CC of 2 means you have some organic matter in your pool and a SLAM may be in order
    - PH saying "Low" doesn't help us. We must have the number based on the TF-100 reading. To prepare for a SLAM, your PH needs to be at 7.2

    I would suggest when you get home, take your time and post a thorough set of numbers right away. Include all of them (FC, CC, PH, TA, CYA, and CH). We'll re-assess and go from there okay.
    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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