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Thread: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

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    Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    I'll try to be brief. My pool was built in 2012. I have maintained a virtually crystal clear pool with zero algae since. I want to take more control and stay away from the pool store as much as possible.
    I am an EZ pool user and I also use my inline chlorinator, I know FLAME AWAY!!!
    Just joking. My Taylor K-2006 arrived yesterday and I'm going to do some base daily tests for at least a week before making any changes.

    I am apprehensive because I work 24 hr shifts, and can be gone for up to 72 hours at a time. If I completely turn off my puck chlorinator and stop using EZ pool, then my pool is 100% dependent on me to feed it what it needs, daily. DAILY being my main concern.

    I am reading horror stories on here of people struggling. Adding gallon after gallon after gallon of bleach to their pool and not achieving desired results.
    Is it possible I could find my pool is hungry enough for a gallon of bleach a day to keep FC at optimum level? My pool gets sun about 11 hours a day and boy does it get warm during the summer.

    I just wonder if it is cost effective to be feeding my pool, if, and only if, it requires a $3.00 gallon of bleach a day? Maybe more?

    I would optimally like to dial my chlorinator back to the lowest setting to where I keep a low level maintenance dose of chlorine and an acceptable level of CYA. My last test from the pool store showed CYA was 70. I will figure out this Taylor test kit and post some results later today after my night shift. My local pool store has a test method to where they draw up the water in a syringe, inject the water into a disk, then place it in a centrifuge. They print me my results out.

    I understand I may be suggesting a modified TFPC method, but I have to find what works for me and my lifestyle. If I switch to another method and find myself aggravated, fighting algae, not being able to keep FC at desired levels, fighting chloramines, cloudy water, I will never hear the end of it from my wife. Simply because what I am doing is working, but probably not ideal.

    I am just very apprehensive about making a switch and then regretting it. I am thinking it could save me money, but maybe not so if my pool requires a gallon of bleach a day at $3.00 a gallon.

    I ran two tests with the chlorine test today before work. I came up with FC being 4.0 and CC 0.0 on both tests.
    I took my sample in the deep end about 12 inches deep and about 18 inches away from the return jet.
    I did not have time to test anything else.

    Any advice or suggestions or words of encouragement are greatly appreciated.
    25K gal vinyl liner built 2012, 18x36 IG, deep end, Pentair 1.5 HP single speed pump, Pentair Tagelus 325lb sand filter, Kreepy Krauly Legend auto cleaner, inline chlorinator, one skimmer basket, 2 main drains, 4 return jets, 2 water sprinklers, newly acquired Taylor K-2006, sample sizer and speed stir.

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    I hear ya on the long shifts! It can be hard huh? When you've read here about people pouring in "gallon after gallon of bleach in their pool" they are the ones with sick pools and they have to get them in order. Or worse yet they're the ones who have been told by pool stores that they need a bottle of x, y and z (cha-ching$$) and none of those were truly needed or appropriate.

    Bleach, as you know, is an excellent sanitizer. Cheap and easily obtained. Cheaper than tabs I imagine?

    Another thing to consider is why can't your wife also learn to test and dose the pool? It takes probably all of five minutes a day... it ain't brain surgery

    Another option to consider is a SWG to give you chlorine (without the dreaded CYA overdose that tabs WILL give you eventually). Sure its a bit of cost upfront, but it saves the trouble of the daily dosing.
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Welcome, BigRob.
    I understand your reticence given your shifts, and agree that either "the wife method" or a SWG may be a good fit for you.

    The goal of TFP is to empower consumers to make their own informed decisions about hw to manage their pools, and just not to do so blindly. So you can be a TFPer using pucks so long as you're fully aware and prepared to combat the consequences...which means an aging your CYA level AND being prepared to exchange water to keep it lower OR to dose to higher levels to accommodate high cya -- review the FC:cya chart in my signature.

    The thing about running a puck chlorinator in tandem with liquid dosing is that the efficacy of the FC ties directly to CYA level...and the pucks are continually adding CyA, so you're dealing with a moving target. I do that on a small scale with my hot tub because I'm allergic to bromine and am paranoid about my 104 degree tub ever zeroing out with liquid alone
    I will say that it requires more frequent testing and fiddling and water changing as a result, but I can live with that.

    My pool, on the other hand, is easy-easy-peasy She uses roughly the same amount of chlorine (liquid) daily and gets a quick check and about 3/4 a bottle and done.

    Since I use both systems more or less, I will also say that you end up fiddling more with TA when using trichlor as it pushes down both ph and TA. That can and should be factored into cost equivalencies as well.

    Best wishes whatever way you go. You've done the most important thing, which is gotten a good test kit and taken the time to understand what goes into your water balance
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    +1 For your situation I would definitely recommend a salt water generator... It will continually put chlorine in your pool when your not there, no daily bleach adding.. you will still need to test daily or as close to that as possible...

    with 25k gal you would need at least 40/45k swg, better would be a 60k swg... Full Market Comparison of Salt Chlorine Generators

    I just looked and the next size sale is still going on
    this is the si45 with free upgrade to si60 $879 CircuPool® Si-45 Salt Pool System
    this is the sj45 with free upgrade to sj60 $929 CircuPool® SJ-45 Salt Pool System

    This is the hayward with the t15 cell up to 40k $899, it gets good reviews and a lot of people have them so easy to troubleshoot Hayward® Aqua Rite Chlorine Generator (with T-CELL-15 Turbo Cell) Salt Pool System

    and this one is from pentair 60k cell $1099 Pentair® IntelliChlor IC60 Chlorine Generator Salt Pool System

    I hope this helps
    Pool: Intex 16x32 15000 gal, 2 speed 340042, Pentair CC320 Filter, CircuPool SJ45 Salt System, Intermatic PE653RC; Hot Tub: 650 Gal SWG Megachlor
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Regarding the CYA, will it just simply continue to build and build and build and not be consumed by direct sunlight? Rain? Time?
    If it doesn't rain for a week or so, I normally have to add water to my pool every 7 days or so to keep it at the level that I like on my skimmer basket intake.

    I will practice with testing CYA today.

    My goal would be LOW level setting on my chlorinator, I normally set it on 3 during the summer months, but I could give 1 a try. And simply substitute bleach to get me to my desired FC level based on my CYA level.

    And yes, my wife will be learning how to test and maintain this pool that SHE AND MY CHILDREN JUST HAD TO HAVE.
    25K gal vinyl liner built 2012, 18x36 IG, deep end, Pentair 1.5 HP single speed pump, Pentair Tagelus 325lb sand filter, Kreepy Krauly Legend auto cleaner, inline chlorinator, one skimmer basket, 2 main drains, 4 return jets, 2 water sprinklers, newly acquired Taylor K-2006, sample sizer and speed stir.

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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    cya is only removed by draining the pool
    if your cya level is 70 then your minimum fc level is 5
    you are extremely lucky your pool hasn't turned green yet
    you could just ask your wife to add 1 gallon bleach each day whilst you are away
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    are you taking care of your pool or is the poolshop taking care of you

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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Yes, CYA just builds and builds up. It only goes out of the pool with splash out or deliberate draining and water replacement. Occasionally it will degrade and lower over the winter...but you can't count that *that*. So you must keep monitoring and assessing the results of using those tablets in the chlorinator. As CYA rises, so do your daily chlorine requirements if you want a healthy pool.

    Your pool's chlorine requirement is actually a bit labile. If you have few swimmers, or some shade over the pool, you might only need x amount today. Then tomorrow your wife's creepy cousins comes over and pee in the pool- bam! You're gonna need more chlorine that day! So the only way to determine how much you need is thru testing. Get the TF-100 test kit and play home chemist.

    As people here get to know their pools daily needs, they sometimes use a bolus of liquid chlorine each day without testing, but then a day or two later they run the tests to be sure everything is still going well.

    Thru experience caring for our pools many can just look at our pool and tell if its out of whack....it's just something about the sparkle we come to recognize.
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Why would you switch? You say your pool is running perfectly so why do you want to fix something that is not broke?

    That is not a shallow question and one you need to ask yourself.

    Your post contains a ton of doubt (and misinformation) so what are your motives? Save money? Not that much....you probably will but TFP is never touted as THE method to save money.

    Make it easier? Hardly. You already are saying to us you don't have the time for this more hands-on understanding of Pool Care.

    Please do not construe this as being rude.......that's not the intent. The intent is to get you to take an introspective look at what's involved in managing your pool with TFP and decide if your lifestyle is up to the task.
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Welcome to TFP Big Rob,


    I'd like to add that we don't flame anyone on his forum. It's not tolerated. We state facts, and point out misinformation when we find it. Like people struggling with bleach. The only ones who struggle at first are those who neglected their pools and can't get them clear in a few days after the neglect. The other ones who struggle are the ones that don't manage their pools or refuse to learn some basic things about keeping a pool in balance.

    Already you are about to be in trouble with 4 FC and 70 Cya. If that is correct. It's one of the notoriously bad readings we see most often from pool stores. You may be even higher, but who knows. I would run it and see, but I would not make a bet on the actual level. Let's say it is 70, and you keep feeding pucks as a sole source for Chlorine....You'll be over 100 by this season's end, and need a lot more FC than you do now to keep Algae from growing. My suggestion would be to see where you are now, and decide how to deal with the levels you have. I would also suggest more reading here to see the thousands of people who've adopted our methods without a struggle ever since. Those who neglect their pools or refuse to learn will struggle, but that's not the norm at all as your post implies.
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Just got home from my 13 hr night shift.
    Pump is not running. It kicks on at 1000 and runs until 8pm.

    FC 1.0
    CC 1.0
    CYA 90
    pH 7.4

    It must be the copper sulfate in EZ pool keeping the algae at bay.
    Yeah, I want to get the CYA down to 50-60 and keep my FC at 3.0 for now before I completely discontinue using EZ pool.

    Pool still looks fine, but I'm probably not doing what is best for it.
    25K gal vinyl liner built 2012, 18x36 IG, deep end, Pentair 1.5 HP single speed pump, Pentair Tagelus 325lb sand filter, Kreepy Krauly Legend auto cleaner, inline chlorinator, one skimmer basket, 2 main drains, 4 return jets, 2 water sprinklers, newly acquired Taylor K-2006, sample sizer and speed stir.

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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    You know what will happen with that Copper in the pool right? If you have white fiberglass steps you may see it there first.
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    .............."I am reading horror stories on here of people struggling. Adding gallon after gallon after gallon of bleach to their pool and not achieving desired results."

    You may have to run that one by me again! Exactly what are you referring to?
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Hi Big Rob, and welcome.
    I'm one of the new guys here and wanted to give my perspective on this.

    First, the posters ahead of me have put a wealth of knowledge on this site.

    Second, along the lines of what Duraleigh said, your not in a crisis mode yet, you just want to maintain your pool yourself. I get that. that's why I'm HERE. So I would suggest as you have the time, check out the how to and guides, starting with pool school, if you haven't already. It is very empowering.

    Third, I switched to SWG before I found this site and am able to "babysit" my pool, so I could have went the straight bleach method myself. But, I really enjoy having it and wouldn't change. I understand the "upfront" cost is high, so that can be a factor. In the long run, the cost of SWG vs bleach is probably about even, it's the ease of maintaining FC, especially in your case, that's appealing.

    Whichever way you go, it is not "hard" to maintain your pool. Brushing, vacuuming, and testing are always apart of having a pool. That said, it's something that is easy to do, something the whole family can take part in.

    Testing is easy once you've done it a few times. In fact your kids may enjoy it (depending on their age, of course). I truly hope you look around and check things out thoroughly. I have had an AGP and IGP for a combined 20 plus years and now I have a clearer and easier to maintain pool. A pool is a thing to be enjoyed, not the PiTa I used to think it was !

    Anyway best of luck to you and hope to see you on here in the future
    Si -central Mo. 32' x 16' -- 3'4" to 6' deep Vinyl liner - 16,500 Gals : Triton II filter -Duraglass 2 hp pump - 1 speed : SI-30 salt generator
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    I am a relatively new pool owner and new to the site. I have a few thoughts on the TFPC method that might calm your opinion on it. Dave or some of the other experts might have some comments that I am over simplifying this, but here is what I feel like are the core principals of the TFPC method.

    1.) Get a good test kit so you can properly test your own pool. Do not rely on the pool store to test your water for you.

    2.) With your new kit, test the water, and make sure that the water stays in line with recommended levels.

    3.) You should not need fancy products like clarifier, algaecide, floc, phosphate removal. Chlorine and filter (and make sure that your other numbers like PH are correct)

    4.) A pool way out of control did not get that way overnight, so don't expect the fix to happen overnight. The pool store fancy chemicals are the expensive magical potion to give people hope in a one day cure.

    5.) Learn about CYA. Understand the relationship of CYA to FC, and what level of FC you need to maintain. Understand that until your CYA gets too high, it is easy for people to say that the pucks work well for them. Pucks work well until the CYA gets out of control, and then the pool will spiral out of control

    6.) You should not shock your pool, you should SLAM your pool. This concept was a bit confusing to me at first, but then it clicked and made sense. The traditional method for shocking was that when you just dump a large amount of chlorine and hope it fixed all issues. The problem was that many people did not add enough FC to do the job, and the concept of a single day fix is unreasonable. Use the CYA/FC table to put in enough chlorine, and then keep that level high until the problem goes away (the SLAM method criteria have been met)

    For me, I know that I need to add about 32 ounces of bleach a day, and my pool stays happy. I check it, but the 32 ounces is almost always right. If your wife and kids are not ready to add that when you are away, then a SWG if probably the way to go for you.
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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Quote Originally Posted by woodyp View Post
    .............."I am reading horror stories on here of people struggling. Adding gallon after gallon after gallon of bleach to their pool and not achieving desired results."

    You may have to run that one by me again! Exactly what are you referring to?
    I can only assume the gallon after gallon refers to people involved in a SLAM to get rid of algae or a swamp.

    Quote Originally Posted by BigRobRN View Post
    Just got home from my 13 hr night shift.
    Pump is not running. It kicks on at 1000 and runs until 8pm.

    FC 1.0
    CC 1.0
    CYA 90
    pH 7.4

    It must be the copper sulfate in EZ pool keeping the algae at bay.
    Yeah, I want to get the CYA down to 50-60 and keep my FC at 3.0 for now before I completely discontinue using EZ pool.

    Pool still looks fine, but I'm probably not doing what is best for it.
    While duraleigh has already made the point that you really don't need to fix what isn't broken, I will just quote him from a previous post “TFPC will never be about Cal Hypo vs tri-chlor- vs something else but it will be about our informed decisions to know the difference and what to do about those differences.”

    We are here it provide information. You can use all of it, some of it or none of it, it is alwasy your choice. As Patrick pointed out, we don't make fun of those who choose other methods and it is not tolerated from the members. You may see a "hard sell" to change to our methods, this is mainly because we know they work and are better for your pool in the long run.

    You just need to understand what you are putting in your water and the long term effects. Your pool is about the same size as mine and here in the midlands of SC I would say probably as warm as where you are. Now that my pool is balanced I put an average of 56 oz of chlorine in my pool each day during the summer. I keep mine open all year, and during the winter a gallon will last me weeks. I started TFPC with high CYA, heck mine was in the stratosphere at over 200. Through aggressive back-washing of my sand filter, partial drains and refills as well as harvesting rain water from roof gutters I took it from 200+ to 40 in about 14 months.

    You r schedule should not be an impediment to adopting our methods. A Salt Water Chlorine Generator has already been mentioned as an option and I will toss out another option - a Stenner Pump, my choice. You still use liquid chlorine (bleach in my case) but it is pumped out of a tank slowly as your pump is running. I have a 15 gallon tank and can go just about a month before I have to refill the tank. This would only leave testing. You can dial in a SWCG or Stenner by testing every few days. Once dialed in only little changes are necessary every now and then.
    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: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Thank you guys for the input and advice.
    I just had my water tested at my local pool store.
    Will post their results compared to mine with my Taylor K-2006

    I'm leaning away from the SWG because I just put up a very expensive metal fence to complete the total securement of my pool. I would hate to the saltwater begin to rust and eat away at my metal fence.

    Maybe I should have used aluminum........ oh well.
    25K gal vinyl liner built 2012, 18x36 IG, deep end, Pentair 1.5 HP single speed pump, Pentair Tagelus 325lb sand filter, Kreepy Krauly Legend auto cleaner, inline chlorinator, one skimmer basket, 2 main drains, 4 return jets, 2 water sprinklers, newly acquired Taylor K-2006, sample sizer and speed stir.

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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    If you look in the Chemical Automation and The Liquidator section of the forum, another common solution is to get a Stenner Pump. This is a pump that will basically add a couple of ounces per hour of bleach into the pool for you. No salt in this method, and cheaper than SWG.
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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Quote Originally Posted by BigRobRN View Post
    Thank you guys for the input and advice.
    I just had my water tested at my local pool store.
    Will post their results compared to mine with my Taylor K-2006

    I'm leaning away from the SWG because I just put up a very expensive metal fence to complete the total securement of my pool. I would hate to the saltwater begin to rust and eat away at my metal fence.

    Maybe I should have used aluminum........ oh well.
    Another "wives tale" about salt water pools. The salt concentration is very low, no worries about a fence (that is not directly in the pool) rusting. Its not like there's a cloud of toxic salt vapors hovering around the water...
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  19. Back To Top    #19

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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Quote Originally Posted by Griswald View Post
    Another "wives tale" about salt water pools. The salt concentration is very low, no worries about a fence (that is not directly in the pool) rusting. Its not like there's a cloud of toxic salt vapors hovering around the water...
    Thank you sir.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Yev View Post
    If you look in the Chemical Automation and The Liquidator section of the forum, another common solution is to get a Stenner Pump. This is a pump that will basically add a couple of ounces per hour of bleach into the pool for you. No salt in this method, and cheaper than SWG.
    Thank you sir, will research.
    25K gal vinyl liner built 2012, 18x36 IG, deep end, Pentair 1.5 HP single speed pump, Pentair Tagelus 325lb sand filter, Kreepy Krauly Legend auto cleaner, inline chlorinator, one skimmer basket, 2 main drains, 4 return jets, 2 water sprinklers, newly acquired Taylor K-2006, sample sizer and speed stir.

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    Re: Wanting to switch to TFPC method, but very apprehensive

    Ok, now remember, I'm a rookie water tester, but I am learning.

    Pool store results at around 1430 hours:

    CYA 74
    FC 0.5
    TC 0.6
    pH 7.7
    TA 104
    CH 321
    Copper 0.4 (currently using EZ pool. No stains at present time on anything)
    Iron 0.3

    My results at 1500 hrs using K-2006 trying my best

    CYA 70
    FC 1.5
    CC 1.0
    pH 7.4
    CH 350-400 (I did have to shock about 3 weeks ago using cal hypo after 2 weeks of non stop rain using 12 lbs and at the beginning of summer I added 40-50 lbs of calcium prills to the pool per pool supplier suggestion)
    TA 110-120
    25K gal vinyl liner built 2012, 18x36 IG, deep end, Pentair 1.5 HP single speed pump, Pentair Tagelus 325lb sand filter, Kreepy Krauly Legend auto cleaner, inline chlorinator, one skimmer basket, 2 main drains, 4 return jets, 2 water sprinklers, newly acquired Taylor K-2006, sample sizer and speed stir.

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