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Thread: potential problem?

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    potential problem?

    We're still a few weeks away from opening, but I wanted to test the water to get a feel where things are at. My numbers shocked me. Here they are:
    TC 0
    ph 6.8
    alk 30
    cal 40
    cya <10
    The water is still pretty cold (maybe 50), but I let the sample get up to room temperature (let's say 72). What's shocking to me is the ph level and the drop in cya over the winter. Last year, the water had a pretty constant ph of 7.4. I keep the cya pretty high since we're in full sun so it was 80 at the end of the season. My alk reading at the end of last season was 110 and my cal was 200.

    I expected the levels to be down because of the drain off (about 16"), but this much?
    I used an ammonia test that I have for my aquariums and it showed 0 ammonia...so I think that's a good sign (if an aquarium test be counted on to measure pool water). I did all the tests twice (with new reagents) just to make sure of my numbers.

    The water is relatively clear--can see the bottom but has some cloudiness to it.
    Am I getting uptight for nothing, or do I have a reason to be concerned?
    Thanks,
    Bill
    23K IG vinyl, Autopilot SWG, 1 HP Aqua-Flo Dominator Pump, 30" Cooper Ranger series sand filter, 1 skimmer, 3 jets, 2 fountains, 2 main drains.

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: potential problem?

    I wouldn't say necessarily be concerned....this can all be dealt with. First, get that PH up pronto. Get some CYA in there, especially chlorine. If you can't hold chlorine, and the CYA you add doesn't take....then the "Dissappearing CYA" mystery deepens, recheck for ammonia at that point

    ...but all your levels dropped, which to me speaks of dilution. Is your pool kept covered during the winter or could rainwater have diluted it?

    You can deal with this....nothing to get too concerned with.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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    TizMe's Avatar
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    Re: potential problem?

    I think CYA typically drops over the winter months. Mine is down to zero this year as well.

    My plan of action would be to get your CYA up to between 30- 50 keeping in mind while your doing this you cant backwash your filter for about a week till the stabilizer get circulated in your water. Also your PH and chlorine needs to be raised ASAP as well.

    If your pool isnt covered during the winter dilution from rain can cause a drop in chem levels. We didnt cover ours and I think thats what has happened to us.

    No big deal ... nothing to panic over !
    Les
    Don't have a pool right now. Just sharing what I have learned over the years!
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    Re: potential problem?

    We cover it with a mesh safety cover, so the snow and rain go right into the pool. I remember the drop off in years prior, but not to this extent.
    Like I said, we haven't opened the pool yet (we had freezing temps and snow less than a week ago). Early next week is my target to get the pump up and running.

    Thanks for the advice!
    Bill
    23K IG vinyl, Autopilot SWG, 1 HP Aqua-Flo Dominator Pump, 30" Cooper Ranger series sand filter, 1 skimmer, 3 jets, 2 fountains, 2 main drains.

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: potential problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by TizMe
    I think CYA typically drops over the winter months.
    I dunno 'bout that.

    My CYA got crazy high after 3 years of not draining my pool for winterization (I had one of those "Aquadoors" that is like a tupperware lid for your skimmer door...and you don't have to drain the water level down.. Eventually the too high CYA problems led me here....

    Anyway... my "over 100" CYA (which was okay with the Pool Store ) held over the winter. Then I found TFP. Listened to the gurus and decided to drain. Three partial drains lowered it to 70. 70 held over winter 07/08 and then I lowered it again to 50. Over last summer it dropped from dilution to 20. I'll be adding CYA on purpose for the first time 8)

    I really do think that while there are commonalities, every pool situation can also be freakily unique (are those even real words? )

    Okay, mesh cover...well that certainly contributes to it doesn't it!
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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    Re: potential problem?

    My CYA dropped this winter too and my cover was water tight so delution is out in my case. I'd say that it was a solid 50 when I closed and when I tested at the end of March, CYA was non existant.

    I thought I read that CYA could diminish over the winter. I guess this is a question for the pool gurus! 8)
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: potential problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by Casey
    My CYA dropped this winter too and my cover was water tight so delution is out in my case. I'd say that it was a solid 50 when I closed and when I tested at the end of March, CYA was non existant.

    I thought I read that CYA could diminish over the winter. I guess this is a question for the pool gurus! 8)
    Yes, it can and it seems the past year we are having more and more reports of disappearing CYA.

    Gotta have something to do with global warming....
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
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    Re: potential problem?

    There is a slow degradation of CYA in the presence of chlorine (or other oxidizers) so if one is maintaining an FC in their pool over the winter, or over the summer for that matter, then a slow reduction of CYA can be seen. However, this is more like a reduction of perhaps 3-8 ppm per month depending on temperature and other conditions.

    The faster CYA reduction that can occur when the FC gets to zero, such as when letting a pool go over the winter, usually results in ammonia in the pool and a seemingly insatiable chlorine demand when you start to add chlorine again.

    If you are seeing that the CYA drops from a high value to zero, but that there is no measured ammonia and the added chlorine starts registering FC right away, then that's a new mystery yet to be explained.

    Prior to this year, my CYA stayed relatively stable with perhaps a small drop over the winter with my maintaining an FC level. This year I screwed up and let the FC get to zero for a few days and paid the price (described in this thread).

    Richard
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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    Re: potential problem?

    To say what chem geek said in a simpler way:

    Some people see dramatic drops in CYA over the winter and some don't. We don't really know why some pools lose CYA over the winter and some don't. I can tell you a good story about why, that might maybe be true, but it is really just guessing right now.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: potential problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donna's Poolboy
    The water is still pretty cold (maybe 50), but I let the sample get up to room temperature (let's say 72).
    I think you don't want to let the sample warm up before you test pH; do that right away. For CYA you do want it to warm up.
    --paulr
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    Re: potential problem?

    I will add to the strange case of disappearing CYA. Last October our CYA level was 70. When we opened the pool the black drop test registered 0. Since we have never experienced such a CYA drop over the winter I tested the CYA with guess strips. Same result. 0.

    We had a cover on the pool so dilution would not be significant. The Cl would have gone to 0 and stayed at 0 for some time..

    We tested for ammonia 5 days after startup and do not have any ammonia.

    When we added bleach we immediately registered FC. The initial tests showed .5 or less CC.

    We tested for CYA with the water at room temperature.

    Borates tested at 50.

    We are now adding a lb. or so of CYA each day to get back to 70.
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    Re: potential problem?

    When you opened the pool, was there algae (green or cloudy) since there was no chlorine over the winter? It sounds like there wasn't since chlorine held right away. In that case, I have no idea what is happening -- specifically what happens to the CYA or where its byproducts (e.g. ammonia) go.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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    Re: potential problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    Quote Originally Posted by Casey
    My CYA dropped this winter too and my cover was water tight so delution is out in my case. I'd say that it was a solid 50 when I closed and when I tested at the end of March, CYA was non existant.

    I thought I read that CYA could diminish over the winter. I guess this is a question for the pool gurus! 8)
    Yes, it can and it seems the past year we are having more and more reports of disappearing CYA.

    Gotta have something to do with global warming....
    C'mon now FPM, get with the program! It's called "climate change" now. They had to change the name when they discovered that the earth is in fact not warming, but cooling. Al Bore makes me ashamed to tell folks I'm from Tennessee sometimes, I swear..
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: potential problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeInTN
    C'mon now FPM, get with the program! It's called "climate change" now. They had to change the name when they discovered that the earth is in fact not warming, but cooling. Al Bore makes me ashamed to tell folks I'm from Tennessee sometimes, I swear..

    Sorry....I'm soooo 2007...
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
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    Re: potential problem?

    I should not have said the Cl held immediately. The pool was green and cloudy when we took the cover off. However, I am sure much of this was due to pine tree pollen. Our porch is yellow with pollen. We poured bleach into the pool Saturday night. Added some more bleach Sunday. Monday morning the Cl held over night.
    30,000 gallon gunite in-ground with a spillover spa, Diving board and water slide
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    Re: potential problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    [

    Anyway... my "over 100" CYA (which was okay with the Pool Store ) held over the winter.
    My CYA is at 100 also and like you, the 2 pool stores near my home (one independent and one PinchAPenny) both say 100 is at the high end but OK. I live in Florida, just south of Jacksonville, and dont know if all pool stores in our region use the same standard or not. But because of what I learned on this board, I discontinued the chlorine tabs and granules and started the BBB program in an attempt to lower the CYA.

    Here's something else about those two stores. Last week I took a sample to each store (they are a block apart from each other - left store #1 and went immediately to store #2) to check their readings. All readings were the same except calcium hardness. One store tested it at 40 and the other at 100. Now how could that be?
    15x30 IG vinyl liner pool, pool cage
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: potential problem?

    How could that be? Probably because neither store did it right....
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
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    Re: potential problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by jagfan
    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    [

    Anyway... my "over 100" CYA (which was okay with the Pool Store ) held over the winter.
    My CYA is at 100 also and like you, the 2 pool stores near my home (one independent and one PinchAPenny) both say 100 is at the high end but OK. I live in Florida, just south of Jacksonville, and dont know if all pool stores in our region use the same standard or not. But because of what I learned on this board, I discontinued the chlorine tabs and granules and started the BBB program in an attempt to lower the CYA.

    Here's something else about those two stores. Last week I took a sample to each store (they are a block apart from each other - left store #1 and went immediately to store #2) to check their readings. All readings were the same except calcium hardness. One store tested it at 40 and the other at 100. Now how could that be?
    Jag fan,

    I too live a little south of jax in the Julington Creek area and would be interested in the stores you went to. I had the girl at Leslie's tell me that baking soda would gunk up my filter and the lady at Pinch a Penny lauh at me because I got my info off the Internet.

    Waterbear a main contributor to this forum works at an ACE in St. Augustine who i went to see when I first installed in my pool.
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  19. Back To Top    #19

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    Re: potential problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by cval

    I too live a little south of jax in the Julington Creek area and would be interested in the stores you went to. I had the girl at Leslie's tell me that baking soda would gunk up my filter and the lady at Pinch a Penny lauh at me because I got my info off the Internet.

    Waterbear a main contributor to this forum works at an ACE in St. Augustine who i went to see when I first installed in my pool.
    I live in Drs Inlet and went to the Pinch a Penny and Sparkle Pools on Blanding Blvd in Orange Park. I've been to the Leslie's in Argyle but have never purchased anything there. Do you know if Leslie's around here carries the Polyquat 60? I guess I'm going to have to fork out the money for one of the mega test kits promoted on the board. I called Leslie's to see if they had their Taylor K2006 equivalent in stock and the guy said no. When I inquired when they'd be getting them in, he said "well I have no idea".
    15x30 IG vinyl liner pool, pool cage
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: potential problem?

    The pool stores test your water for free, to get you to come inside, so they can tell you how to "fix" your water problems. Even if your water is fine, they'll end up convincing you that you need some sort of product they sell.

    Most don't sell good test kits because they want you to keep coming back....

    The Leslie's by me has the Polquat 60 but its called "Leslie's Algae Control" and look for the active ingredient 60% ....I think it was like $24 or so.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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