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Thread: Got Some Chemistry Issues

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    Nighthawk224's Avatar
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    Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Got some test numbers yesterday and going supply shopping today. My boyfriend and I just bought a new house May 1 that came with a pool. Neither of us has ever had any pool experience with a pool, so we hired a friend's pool service to help out until we got all moved and mostly settled. Well, the time has come and I am now in charge of pool maintenance. So here are the numbers.

    FC 33 ppm
    CC 2 ppm
    Total 35
    PH 6.8
    CH 625
    TA 110
    CYA 100+

    The pool guy already told me that pretty much the only way to lower the CYA is to drain and refill, so we are planning to do that at the end of the summer. I have already added some Borax, although not enough because the boyfriend only brought me one small box. The pool guy was using pucks and they are all gone at this time. So I'm assuming my first step will be to get the pH up.

    Thanks in advance e for any input.
    ~11,250 gallon, in ground, Pebble-Tec finish, Hayward SwimClear cartridge filter, Hayward Super II pump, Hayward bottom vacuum NaviGator (I call him Fred), waterfall feature, TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    You cannot get a good test on PH with the FC over 10.

    The first thing you need to do is get a good test kit. Look at my siggy for see the ones we use and love.

    If your CYA is really 100+ you will need to drain SOME of your pool. BUT that is the test the pool store gets wrong more often than not.

    Let us know when you get your good test kit. We can go from there.

    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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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    First step is to start replacing water. Why treat a bunch of water you're just going to dump out? When the CYA level is down to some manageable level, your pH will likely be higher with the addition of tap water (Arizona water is usually quite "hard") and it will require fewer chemicals to adjust it.

    Are those your test results? If not, you need to get your own 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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    Nighthawk224's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Sorry, I forgot to add the TF-100 test kit to my signature line. These are test results from the TF-100. How urgent is it to change out the water? I was planning on doing a full water change late summer, early fall. We are swimming in the pool and rinsing off immediately after and so far so good.

    Thanks for the help here, so far I am LOVING having and taking care of this pool.

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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Since you said your CYA is 100+, you should do a dilution test to get closer to the actual CYA level. Basic idea is to run the test with e.g. half pool water and half distilled or tap water; then multiply result by 2. If you think you may have much more than 100, you can dilute more before testing. There are links on here to a better description of this procedure, but hard for me to find on mobile device.
    18' x 48" ring top pool (Summer Escapes); 5500 gallons; set up June - October, stored during winter; Intex 2500 gph pump (B size cartridge filter) Hayward 21" sand filter + 1.5 hp single speed Powerflo Matrix pump (upgrade October 2016) *** K-2006 test kit, refills from tftestkits

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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    The CYA tests top out at 100-ish, you could be 200!

    You need to do an extended CYA test to get a better idea of your CYA level.

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...l=1#post203524

    You will never get a proper pH test running your FC that high either, so it's important to know what your true CYA is.

    Be be prepared to drain and replace some of that water.

    Dom
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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    I will tell you that a messed up HIGH CYA and who knows PH/TA I "lost" my first pool. The liner got SO brittle that the whole bottom cracked and all of the water went out and almost took me with it!

    It took me a long time and finding TFP before I would even think about getting another pool.

    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: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    I live in Tucson and 2 years ago my CYA was 180 range. Took me 1 1/2 years to gradually bring it down. I did some partial drains, 6"- a foot at a time. I also used our monsoon season to my advantage. When I was fairly sure we would get hit with rain, sometimes 1/2-1" at a time I would drain my pool a couple of inches and let the rain fill it. If we got less rain than what I drained I then topped it off with tap water.

    You can live with high CYA as long as you never let FC level drop below Pool Math suggested levels. I never had algae while gradually bringing down my CYA. The issue is if you get algae you will have problems doing a proper SLAM.

    It just felt irresponsible to waste water in our desert clime.

    BTW, you do not need to bring it to 30-40 CYA, 60 is quite manageable here in AZ, IMHO. Maybe even desirable. Most folks on here don't get 330 days of sunshine like we do.

    And you and I have pebbletec (which I believe has plaster core) not a vinyl liner like previous poster.

    Once you get your CYA under control post back and we can talk about our high CH and how it too can be controlled.
    10000 Gal, IG Pebbletec, pop up cleaners,Hayward EcoStar VS, 425 sq ft Hayward Cartridge, waterfall feature

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    Nighthawk224's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Thanks for all the info, guys n gals. I did do a dilute CYA three times and the results were 200+, 200+, and just over 200, so I will look into draining probably at least 75% maybe this next weekend. I will need to study and research my setup to see what goes where and look into local drainage protocol. It's a work in progress.

    Another thought, about two weeks ago, I was using the pool every day for about five days and didn't always rinse off after. I developed a skin rash and thought it was some cheap sunscreen. I begin to see where the true problem is... ��
    ~11,250 gallon, in ground, Pebble-Tec finish, Hayward SwimClear cartridge filter, Hayward Super II pump, Hayward bottom vacuum NaviGator (I call him Fred), waterfall feature, TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Ahhhhhhhhhhhh the rash called "bad poolitis" I am glad we are able to cure you LOL

    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: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Quote Originally Posted by Wildcat View Post
    I live in Tucson and 2 years ago my CYA was 180 range. Took me 1 1/2 years to gradually bring it down. I did some partial drains, 6"- a foot at a time. I also used our monsoon season to my advantage. When I was fairly sure we would get hit with rain, sometimes 1/2-1" at a time I would drain my pool a couple of inches and let the rain fill it. If we got less rain than what I drained I then topped it off with tap water.

    You can live with high CYA as long as you never let FC level drop below Pool Math suggested levels. I never had algae while gradually bringing down my CYA. The issue is if you get algae you will have problems doing a proper SLAM.

    It just felt irresponsible to waste water in our desert clime.

    BTW, you do not need to bring it to 30-40 CYA, 60 is quite manageable here in AZ, IMHO. Maybe even desirable. Most folks on here don't get 330 days of sunshine like we do.
    I completely agree with this post. When I started using the TFP method a couple of years back my cya was around 160 ppm. I managed to get it down to 60 by the end of the season by managing my water refills by watching the weather closely and using pool water for watering my grass and power washing. Through this time, by watching my FC closely I never had an outbreak of algae and btw never have had to do a slam. One thing I will add is that once you stop using stabilized chlorine products, the only direction cya will go is down, so I would suggest that any drain and refills be targeted got the high side of the desired cya range.
    30,000 gal, 20 x 40 ft vinyl, IG, installed 2006
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Where I am, I find having 60 to 70 cya a better fit. As noted above the key is to keep the FC at or a little over the target number. I have never needed to run a slam....knock on wood, as long as you stay on a daily regime of adding liquid chlorine your pool will stay clean clean clean
    Inground 13,200 gal Vinyl, Pentair 3/4 hp pump, Pentair Sand Dollar filter, Polaris 280

    Pool School, Pool Math, CYA to FC ratio chart, Testing Kits

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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Hello, I'm new here so I hope I'm not hijacking this thread but her CC is 2ppm. Is that something to be worried about?
    24K gallon, IG, plaster, Pentair Clean and Clear Plus Filter, Pentair Heater, Pentair Intelliflo pump, Built in March 2015, Taylor K-2006, Spa included

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    Defgufman's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Yes a cc that high indicates organics and a slam
    Inground 13,200 gal Vinyl, Pentair 3/4 hp pump, Pentair Sand Dollar filter, Polaris 280

    Pool School, Pool Math, CYA to FC ratio chart, Testing Kits

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    Nighthawk224's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Thank you for all the info. Making preparations to drain most of the water out and start "fresh." Now if I can just avoid ever seeing a Giant Water Bug in the pool again, I think I will be just fine..
    ~11,250 gallon, in ground, Pebble-Tec finish, Hayward SwimClear cartridge filter, Hayward Super II pump, Hayward bottom vacuum NaviGator (I call him Fred), waterfall feature, TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Quote Originally Posted by Nighthawk224 View Post
    Thank you for all the info. Making preparations to drain most of the water out and start "fresh." Now if I can just avoid ever seeing a Giant Water Bug in the pool again, I think I will be just fine..
    Be careful draining most of the water out in our heat. I think it can cause problems. Ask for other advice but I think a more gradual drain like 1/4 or 1/3 is safer in 110F weather
    10000 Gal, IG Pebbletec, pop up cleaners,Hayward EcoStar VS, 425 sq ft Hayward Cartridge, waterfall feature

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    Nighthawk224's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    Wow, thanks for that info. I will do some more research. I was planning on draining and refilling immediately. I work at home and it would be pretty easy for me to babysit the process. Got a pump on order and I have located the sewer drain in the front yard. Pump most certainly will not be here for a few days at least, so I will see if there is further input on this matter. Otherwise, I will plan on a 1/3 drain and refill and repeat if needed in the future.
    ~11,250 gallon, in ground, Pebble-Tec finish, Hayward SwimClear cartridge filter, Hayward Super II pump, Hayward bottom vacuum NaviGator (I call him Fred), waterfall feature, TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Nighthawk224's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    I just had a further thought. I was kind of sad to have to drain/refill in summer so I would have to wait a while before swimming (for the water to warm up), but then I remembered that when you turn on the cold water in AZ, you get hot anyway for a while, so that should help...

    So far I have not tinkered with the timer settings, they are the same as the previous owner. He had the pump system set for about 7.5 to 8 hours. When we first moved it, it would start early morning and end in the afternoon. We have since had to shut off the breaker to replace the pool light (an adventure all on its own) and because we had to get the old bulb out and go to the pool store for a replacement, it was off a number of hours. So now the pump starts up early afternoon and ends just before midnight. Does the timing of the pump cycling make much difference to the health of the pool? I feel like I have learned a TON in the last few weeks and only just starting to realize how little I really do know.
    ~11,250 gallon, in ground, Pebble-Tec finish, Hayward SwimClear cartridge filter, Hayward Super II pump, Hayward bottom vacuum NaviGator (I call him Fred), waterfall feature, TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    You ask such great questions!

    So when do you test and add bleach? I just want to make sure you have the pump running for 30 mins BEFORE you take water to test AND that is runs at least 30 mins after you add bleach.

    Okay here is how I do it and why:

    -Pump-I turn on the pump when I go out first thing in the morning to do critter care (about 6:00 am). My husband turns it off when he gets home (about 3:00pm) We run the pump during this time as I want the water moving while the sun is out. I don't know if it really makes a difference but it feels good to me LOL

    -FC test just after the sun goes down. Add what is needed. I do this so that the bleach can do all of it's "work" during the night when it does not need to worry about the sun.

    -Pump for test and adding bleach-I turn it on when I start dinner. Once dinner is over I test and dose as needed. I let the pump run until I start getting ready for bed (I am in bed by 9:00pm I NEED my 8 hours!)

    This has worked for me. To "train" myself to turn the pump off I put a sticky note on my mirror so I would not forget. It has become a habit so I do not have the note any more.

    I hope this helps you.

    I am also going to help you learn on your own. Ready for you lesson on TFP? Look at the side bar on the left hand side of the home page for TFP. Find where it says table of contents. Go there and find the pump run time link. See if that helps you know how long/much to run your pump.

    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: Got Some Chemistry Issues

    I have been testing in the late afternoon, about 5 pm here and after the sun is pretty much not hitting the water any more. I have two nice tall Mexican palm trees right in line with the sun at this time of year. So the testing has been done within the 30 min before and 30 min after. I also have been letting the waterfall stay on whenever the pump is on. As for adding, I have some pucks left over and have been putting those in until I can get the submersible pump and get to draining. Boyfriend and I have been swimming a little, but always rinse off in the shower or the hose (since water comes out warm, yay AZ!) when we come out and so far, no "poolitis" has cropped up again. The pool is technically out of service until I can get really well on top of chemistry.

    My biggest previous water care project was a 20 gallon fish tank years ago.. (wow.. it's actually been decades.. ). Running the pump a lot feels good to me, but it sure doesn't feel good on the electricity bill!

    I am finding out that the more I learn, the more excited I get about learning MORE!!
    ~11,250 gallon, in ground, Pebble-Tec finish, Hayward SwimClear cartridge filter, Hayward Super II pump, Hayward bottom vacuum NaviGator (I call him Fred), waterfall feature, TF-100 Test Kit.

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