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Thread: So CONFUSED!!

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    So CONFUSED!!

    We set up the pool (Coleman above ground 16 ft round x 48 inches deep) mid June and filled with well water took a day and a half to fill. Water had yellow tint and instead of being a smart person and taking in a water sample I decided to shock right away. Water turned brown within a few hours. For the following two weeks I only had one of those cheap filter cartridges (index/walmart style). The lightbulb turned on and I immediately brought a water sample to Leslie pool supply where I was told that the shock I had spread oxidized with the iron from well water. I was given a jug of metal free to disperse and told to bring in a water sample 24 hrs later. Metals were zero on the next visit but I wanted a clear pool for the kids and got suckered into buying as ascorbic acid to remove the brown. 24 hrs later pool was no longer brown. But green. Took in another sample and was told I had algae now (by this time I had upgraded to my sand filter as I was trying to clear this mess up quickly so kids could swim). Leslie's convinced me that now that I had a sand filter. The quickest way to rid algae was to add ten lbs of alum! The pool then turned whitish green. I was repeatedly told over a period of three days, that I just had to let the alum settle with no circulation and no chlorine. It was at this time that I decided to try a different pool company, aqua leisure. They told me to add de to my sand filter and filter from the bottom (set vacuum on bottom of pool on its side through the skimmer and eventually everything would filter out) after four days of this method and no results my husband and I decided to scour the Internet for any possible solution and we stumbled on this website. I immediately added a gallon of 6.25% bleach to my pool at 10 pm last night and scoured my house for another one to add this morning. I found an off brand type with no chlorine value and added it. When I came home today, for the first time in almost three weeks I could see down into my pool at over a foot and a half deep and got extremely excited!!! This afternoon I took two pool samples and took one to Leslie pools and another to Aqua leisure. Here are the results: Leslie pool (uses eyeballs, vials and color matches with test strips)- free available chlorine: 4, total available chlorine-4, calcium hardness-160, cya-60, ta-90, ph-7.6, copper-0, iron-0, tds-800, phosphates-200 and temperature-80. Aqua leisure (uses some machine that shoots light through samples and feeds data into the computer): ta-120, ph-7.1, calcium hardness- 272, total chlorine- 1.57, free chlorine- 1.29, chlorine stabilizer- 15, and iron- .4. I'm so confused in the huge difference between numbers!!!! I have ordered a tf-100 test kit and it will be here on 7july. Until then both places had my chlorine low so I added two gallons of Clorox with 8.25% of chlorine. I also decided to deep clean my filter since I knew it should be caked with iron, alum and de. It was and was disgusting after only operating for a week and being back washed on a twice to three times daily basis. What can I do until I receive my test kit? My plan was to add a gallon of bleach in the morning and again 12 hrs later since I've already had such good results. Is this a good idea? Would love to be able to swim on Fourth of July! Thank you for your patience in this long post! Have pictures from beginning to now but can't figure out how to post.
    6k, AG, VINYL, Krystal Clear sand filter-2,800 GPH (single speed), installed 13JUN15, tF-100, chlorine pool, well water to fill

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Welcome to TFP!!

    My first suggestion is to stop going to the pool store. Their only response it to sell you something, and usually it doesn't help.

    We can teach you how to get it sparkling and keep it that was for a lot less money than the pool store, but to be honest the 4th may be out.

    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 while you are clearing the pool, and probably enough reagents for a couple of years normal use.

    While you wait for it to get delivered, you have a homework assignment. Start with Turning Your Green Swamp Back into a Sparkling Oasis
    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: So CONFUSED!!

    I'm only going to pool store to get readings as my tf100 kit won't be here until 7juky. I have definitely stopped buying their miracle cures!! My sand filter has been running nonstop for the last 36 hrs and will continue to do so now that I've found this site . My confusion lies in who to believe, the high school worker, eyeballing, color matching pool store or the one that uses all digital data for readings. I scrub the pool at a minimum of daily and sometimes twice daily schedule, right before I add shock or chlorine. I am constantly on top of my filter pressure gauge, so that I backwash as soon as needed. But I do have to work 8-10 hrs a day (military life ) I was wondering if my plan was good to follow through with while I await my beloved test kit. I also added my "floating chlorinator" with a 3" hockey puck since my stabilizer was on the low side
    6k, AG, VINYL, Krystal Clear sand filter-2,800 GPH (single speed), installed 13JUN15, tF-100, chlorine pool, well water to fill

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Porterta02 View Post
    I'm only going to pool store to get readings as my tf100 kit won't be here until 7juky. I have definitely stopped buying their miracle cures!! My sand filter has been running nonstop for the last 36 hrs and will continue to do so now that I've found this site . My confusion lies in who to believe, the high school worker, eyeballing, color matching pool store or the one that uses all digital data for readings. I scrub the pool at a minimum of daily and sometimes twice daily schedule, right before I add shock or chlorine. I am constantly on top of my filter pressure gauge, so that I backwash as soon as needed. But I do have to work 8-10 hrs a day (military life ) I was wondering if my plan was good to follow through with while I await my beloved test kit. I also added my "floating chlorinator" with a 3" hockey puck since my stabilizer was on the low side
    Circle D) None of the above. You trust your own test results and the advice of the experienced individuals here.
    Chris
    17' x 35' outdoor in-ground Grecian shaped w/ vinyl liner. ≈ 21,000 gallons. Hayward S-200 Sand Filter and 1 HP Hayward Super-pump. Other Accessories: slide, light, ladder, fiberglass stairs, TF-100. Baquacil Conversion - June 2015, SLAM How-to, Chlorine/CYA Chart

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    From rust brown, to initial green, to cloudy with alum green, to adding two gallons of bleach and part of my visibility, over a two week period!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    6k, AG, VINYL, Krystal Clear sand filter-2,800 GPH (single speed), installed 13JUN15, tF-100, chlorine pool, well water to fill

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    I promise, I'm not trying to be negative and rain on your parade.....

    I would take that floater out of the pool. When you get you kit you ar going ot have to SLAM your pool. Right now with the puck floater in your pool you are hoping that they guy who told you the CYA was 15 is right and the guy who told you it was 60 is wrong. I would not be willing to take that bet.

    Right now yo need chlorine without any additional baggage - that is 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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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Floater has been removed
    6k, AG, VINYL, Krystal Clear sand filter-2,800 GPH (single speed), installed 13JUN15, tF-100, chlorine pool, well water to fill

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Good job! You are on the right track! Finding TFP and following directions LOL

    NO more pool store visits please.

    You can use walmart greater value bleach (plain, no scents or anything). It is cheaper. Just make sure to check that it is the 8.25% one.

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Much to my surprise and delight, I came home today and could actually make one t the design on the bottom of my pool! Still sticking to the gallon of bleach every 12 hrs until my test kit comes. I was unable to find a six way test kit that didn't come in color coded strips that had anything to do with stabilizer or cya levels (looked at Walmart and Home Depot). I bought the strips and will run a "test" in 30 minutes. Just got done back washing filter and scrubbing down the pool
    Last edited by Porterta02; 07-01-2015 at 03:26 PM. Reason: Added information

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Porterta02 View Post
    Much to my surprise and delight, I came home today and could actually make one t the design on the bottom of my pool! Still sticking to the gallon of bleach every 12 hrs until my test kit comes. I was unable to find a six way test kit that didn't come in color coded strips that had anything to do with stabilizer or cya levels (looked at Walmart and Home Depot). I bought the strips and will run a "test" in 30 minutes. Just got done back washing filter and scrubbing down the pool
    Good that you can see a little. Just wait until you get the test kit and start going at it.

    I don;t know if this has been mentioned, but on a sand filter wait until you have a 25% rise in pressure over the clean pressure. Sand filters actually clean better when they are a little dirty.
    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: So CONFUSED!!

    My pressure gauge reads 5 after a backwash, unfortunately once my gauge hits 10 psi (in the yellow zone) my filter no longer has enough suction to pull the skimmer down and let's very little in and has low output. It's was at 11 when I back washed. Guess I should've sprang for a fancier pump. But as of now, pump skimmer cleaning equipment and pool chemicals have cost me three times as much as the actual pool itself!
    6k, AG, VINYL, Krystal Clear sand filter-2,800 GPH (single speed), installed 13JUN15, tF-100, chlorine pool, well water to fill

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Alright, time for some readings
    1jul15 @ 5:05 p.m. Using "pool time six way test strips"
    total hardness: 250
    total chlorine- above ten (highest reading, brighter and darker than color chart)
    free chlorine- above ten (highest reading, brighter and darker than color chart)
    ph-7.8
    total alkalinity-120
    stabilize- somewhere between 0-50, I'll call it 25 since it was pretty much halfway between colors
    temp-88 degrees

    finding the pool math calculator to be a little confusing to use. Not sure what type of chlorine Clorox bleach falls under, nir what my "target" levels should be for anything else on there
    6k, AG, VINYL, Krystal Clear sand filter-2,800 GPH (single speed), installed 13JUN15, tF-100, chlorine pool, well water to fill

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    I thought I posted this last night, but it disappeared. While you are waiting for your TF-100 test kit to arrive, you can get this kit at Wal Mart for under $25 and get a good CYA reading. That will at least help you figure out how much chlorine you need to add to your pool, although it will not provide an accurate FC reading. You'll have to wait for the TF-100 for that.



    Walmart: HTH 6-Way Test Kit
    25000 gallon free-form gunite
    Jandy Stealth pump/CL340 cartridge filter
    Pentair IC40 SWG
    Pentair MasterTemp 250HD heater
    Jandy AquaLink RS automation

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    I looked for that kit and couldn't find it. Then went to Home Depots pool section and all they had was an hdx five way test kit that doesn't even touch cya. I went back to walmart and bought the six way test strips
    6k, AG, VINYL, Krystal Clear sand filter-2,800 GPH (single speed), installed 13JUN15, tF-100, chlorine pool, well water to fill

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Bummer. Sorry... I've seen them at Academy sporting goods too, if you have one of those nearby.
    25000 gallon free-form gunite
    Jandy Stealth pump/CL340 cartridge filter
    Pentair IC40 SWG
    Pentair MasterTemp 250HD heater
    Jandy AquaLink RS automation

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Porterta02 View Post
    Alright, time for some readings
    1jul15 @ 5:05 p.m. Using "pool time six way test strips"
    total hardness: 250
    total chlorine- above ten (highest reading, brighter and darker than color chart)
    free chlorine- above ten (highest reading, brighter and darker than color chart)
    ph-7.8
    total alkalinity-120
    stabilize- somewhere between 0-50, I'll call it 25 since it was pretty much halfway between colors
    temp-88 degrees

    finding the pool math calculator to be a little confusing to use. Not sure what type of chlorine Clorox bleach falls under, nir what my "target" levels should be for anything else on there
    It will all make sense once you get your test kit. First thing you do is run a full panel of tests including FC, CC (while you're at it), pH, TA, and CYA. CH is not necessary because you have a vinyl liner, but you may want to in order to get used to the drops and whatnot.

    Adjust pH to around 7.2. pH readings are unreliable at SLAM levels so you don't have to test it until you are done.

    The Chlorine/CYA chart will tell you chlorine ranges and SLAM level for each CYA level.

    In Pool Math,

    1) Enter in your pool size in gallons.
    2) In the middle of the chart, enter your current CYA in the Now column
    3) Go back up to the top of the chart and enter your current FC level in the NOW column and the SLAM level in the TARGET column for your current CYA.
    4) Enter in the concentration and jug size for the liquid chlorine.
    5) Mouse over the oz. and the calculator will tell you how many jugs to pour into the water.
    6) As has been said, the closer and more consistently you can keep your water at SLAM levels, the more progress you should make.
    Chris
    17' x 35' outdoor in-ground Grecian shaped w/ vinyl liner. ≈ 21,000 gallons. Hayward S-200 Sand Filter and 1 HP Hayward Super-pump. Other Accessories: slide, light, ladder, fiberglass stairs, TF-100. Baquacil Conversion - June 2015, SLAM How-to, Chlorine/CYA Chart

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Sorry it's taking awhile to respond, I keep getting an "account has been suspended" error. Do I adjust the ph now? The last gallon of bleach I added was at 4:30 pm
    6k, AG, VINYL, Krystal Clear sand filter-2,800 GPH (single speed), installed 13JUN15, tF-100, chlorine pool, well water to fill

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    You need to wait until your good test kit gets there before you do much of anything

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    121 oz. of 8.25% concentration bleach to a 6,000 gallon pool will raise FC by 13. That might be okay given UV deterioration, but if you bump it passed and sustain above SLAM levels for too long, you risk damaging your liner. You don't know how much stabilizer is in the water so you don't know how much FC you are adding 13 to each time you add bleach, especially at night. Cutting back to 1/2 gallon every 12 hours or 1 gallon in the evening might be a better strategy until you get your test kit. It's only a few more days.

    Also, if you've pumped your FC over 10, your pH reading wouldn't be accurate. Given my experiences with test strips, I question their accuracy as well. For instance, I used to run my pool on a Baquacil system. As I was getting my pool ready for conversion, the Baqua Test strips said I had a pH of 6.8. When I tested with the TF-100, I was over 8.2 and ended up treating my water with 3 quarts of muriatic acid the night before I started my conversion.

    I guess the long & short of it is that I don't think you are helping yourself by flying blind. I know it's agonizing, but the test kit will be there on Tuesday. Post results and your TFP friends will guide you along the path. While I've bought in to the TFP method 100% and follow it to a T, I've only been doing it for a really short time. There are some really smart and experienced people here.
    Chris
    17' x 35' outdoor in-ground Grecian shaped w/ vinyl liner. ≈ 21,000 gallons. Hayward S-200 Sand Filter and 1 HP Hayward Super-pump. Other Accessories: slide, light, ladder, fiberglass stairs, TF-100. Baquacil Conversion - June 2015, SLAM How-to, Chlorine/CYA Chart

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    Re: So CONFUSED!!

    Holy cow, the miracle finally happened!!!!! I woke up this morning to a crystal clear blue pool!!!!!! I'm so excited!! We'll be cutting back on the bleach now (.5 gallon instead of full gallon) and still wait for our test kit, so I can finally really gauge where we're at. Right now I know we match one of the three criteria, I darn near cried since this has been a three week battle. I was about to stick a knife in the side and never have a pool again!
    6k, AG, VINYL, Krystal Clear sand filter-2,800 GPH (single speed), installed 13JUN15, tF-100, chlorine pool, well water to fill

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