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Thread: First test with TF-100

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    chris4150's Avatar
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    Alleged hydration stains.

    Hello to all,

    Im new to this site as of today and in need of help. I recently had a free form plaster pool built in November of 2008 by Anthony and Sylvan. Less than a month after the plaster was completed the "pool school" guy came over and noticed blue hues in my white plaster. So the plaster was removed and new plaster put in. Approximately 2 months later I noticed brown to black colored stains developing in the corners of some of the steps and a few in the shallow end. A few weeks later I noticed the same type of stains developing in a different section of the shallow end and a couple in the deep end. I notified warranty division and they sent out the "plaster expert" along with an employee from the plaster company and they determined that the stains were "hydration stains". It was explained to me that the gunite must have had water or moisture on it when the plaster was redone thus causing the stains to leach into the plaster. I was advised to wait 9 months and that the stains would most likely go away and if not, they would do an acid rinse. I originally was satisfied with their explanation but Ive become somewhat angered as I observe that the stains have slightly spread and my soon to be ideal summer of entertaining and swimming are prematurely marred by emabarrasment.

    So my question is somewhat compounded. Are these possible hydration stains or is this a metal issue? Is Anthony and Sylvan attempting at an educated guess in thier assessment? I would have provided pics of the stains but its 1 A.M. as of this post.

    I inquired from the pool rep how they came to the conlusion that the stains were "hydration stains" to which I was advised that they "appear to be hydration stains".

    As far as pool chemistry, I have checked the chemistry each weekend and have only had to add minimal amounts of muratic acide to bring down the Ph and Ta. I have taken samples to Leslie and Warehouse and have been informed that my hardness is low but, due to the newness of the plaster I needed to waite a few more months prior to treating for hardness. My chlorine levels are hardly traceable due to my use of an ozone filtration system. One issue that came to mind is the use of sequestrian agents. The first time my plaster was done the project manager provided me with jacks magic blue stuff in which I used. However, the second time my plaster was redone, the project manager failed to provide me with a sequestrian agent. Could this possibly have to do with the stains? Lastly, twice now a pool chair has blown into the pool and later recovered. Could this have added metals to the water thus causing the stains?

    I apologize for such a long post, just new to this site and somewhat skeptical of the pool builders explanation.

    Chris
    13,500 gallon free form Pebble Tec pool- 2 skimmers
    Pentair Intelli-Flow filter pump, Pentair Intelli-Super Flo booster pump, waterfall pump, Del Ozone Eclipse 1 generator, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge filtration, Nature 2 XG Clear Vision, In-line Chlorinator, Polaris 280, Raypack heater, and Color Logic LED lights.

    Proud user of BBB, pool school, pool calculator, TF-100, and the advice of the friendly people here!

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Welcome to TFP!

    With an investment like yours, I highly recommend you get your own test kit like the TF-100 or the Taylor K-2006, so you don't have to rely on the advice of others. It's the best investment in your pool you can make.

    In the meantime, we will need you to get a full set of test results, ask Leslies or whomever to give you the printout or write the numbers on a paper for you. Make sure they test for calcium hardness and metals - iron and copper. Once we have your test results we can advise you better.

    They sold you a Nature 2 and an ozonator?

    No worries, you'll get plenty of responses regarding the stains....
    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
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Welcome to TFP!

    An expert can tell the difference between hydration stains and metal stains, if we think they are experts (they should be). Still, if they actually knew what they were doing, hydration stains can usually be prevented by proper startup procedures.

    If you got the chair out within a reasonable amount of time it would not have had any effect.

    You can have your water tested for metals comparatively easily, and there are a couple of other ways to check for metal stains. Also, if you post pictures we might be able to tell what is happening.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Here are some pics that I took earlier this date. They appear dim because it was about to pour down rain.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    13,500 gallon free form Pebble Tec pool- 2 skimmers
    Pentair Intelli-Flow filter pump, Pentair Intelli-Super Flo booster pump, waterfall pump, Del Ozone Eclipse 1 generator, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge filtration, Nature 2 XG Clear Vision, In-line Chlorinator, Polaris 280, Raypack heater, and Color Logic LED lights.

    Proud user of BBB, pool school, pool calculator, TF-100, and the advice of the friendly people here!

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    My chlorine levels are hardly traceable due to my use of an ozone filtration system.
    When I saw that in your first post, it sent up a red flag. YOur pool looks cloudy and I believe you need chlorine in there to get rid of what is probably the start of algae.

    I can't tell from the pic about the spots but I wouldn't be surprised if high levels of chlorine wouldn't cause them to go away......that's a pure guess but worth consideration.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    chris4150's Avatar
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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    I originally thought that it may have been algae, but the stain wont come off with a brush and such, especially after the warranty rep. from the pool builder came to inspect the stains. Ive questioned the low chlorine levels when having my pool water tested at Leslies and Warehouse, but once I inform them that I have an ozone generator they dismiss the low reading. The pictures appear cloudy because the winds were kicking up and it eventually poured rain here. I questioned the chlorine readings with my pool sales rep. and was advised that with the ozone generator my chlorine readings will hover around 1.0 to 1.5 ppm. I have read all the literature available from Del Ozone and they too speak of the low chlorine required for pools when using an ozone generator. Still not quit sure as of yet.
    13,500 gallon free form Pebble Tec pool- 2 skimmers
    Pentair Intelli-Flow filter pump, Pentair Intelli-Super Flo booster pump, waterfall pump, Del Ozone Eclipse 1 generator, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge filtration, Nature 2 XG Clear Vision, In-line Chlorinator, Polaris 280, Raypack heater, and Color Logic LED lights.

    Proud user of BBB, pool school, pool calculator, TF-100, and the advice of the friendly people here!

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Pool store testing is infamously uninformed. I genuinely believe you need chlorine in your pool to clear that water. I hear you about the wind and rain but the pool water is cloudy. Check out some of the pics on this forum to compare to the clarity of your pool water.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    With having a chlorine booster, should the booster be set at "wide open" or will chlorine have to be manually added to the pool?
    13,500 gallon free form Pebble Tec pool- 2 skimmers
    Pentair Intelli-Flow filter pump, Pentair Intelli-Super Flo booster pump, waterfall pump, Del Ozone Eclipse 1 generator, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge filtration, Nature 2 XG Clear Vision, In-line Chlorinator, Polaris 280, Raypack heater, and Color Logic LED lights.

    Proud user of BBB, pool school, pool calculator, TF-100, and the advice of the friendly people here!

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Chris, I'm sorry to be dumb but I don't know what a chlorine booster is.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Maybe it's a terminology thing.... can you post a picture of the "chlorine booster"....

    I wonder if it's like an inline chlorinator? But you have a Nature 2....

    Don't forget to post a full set of results....

    If those stains are indeed organic....if you happen to have any chlorine tablets or pucks on hand you can hold one on the stain and see if the stain fades....

    To see if they are metal, you can rub a vitamin C tablet on the stain. With metal stains the should come off with the vitamin c.

    FYI, or BTW....The Nature 2 is a "mineral system". Read more about these kind of "alternative sanitizers" in this article....
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/alter...uth-t3025.html

    By selling you a Nature 2 and an ozonator it's all a bit overkill if you ask me . Of course thats my unsolicited 2 cents.... And if you have some sort of chlorine booster to boot?

    No worries, we'll help you get this figured out!
    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
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Sorry, it was a terminology issue. It is a inline chlorinator per my pool spec sheets. Description wise, its a verticle tube that holds several 3" chlorine tablets. It has an adjuster on the back side that can be slid from closed to open with varying degrees of openess. Currently it is set a tad above the half way open mark. In regards to having a Nature 2 and ozonator, it was all part of the pool package offered by the pool builder. I have yet to insert the filter into the Nature 2 per recommendation by the "pool school" individual due to my pool being built this winter. With all this being said, Im still stumped by the stains. Ill try to get current test readings to post here tomorrow.
    13,500 gallon free form Pebble Tec pool- 2 skimmers
    Pentair Intelli-Flow filter pump, Pentair Intelli-Super Flo booster pump, waterfall pump, Del Ozone Eclipse 1 generator, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge filtration, Nature 2 XG Clear Vision, In-line Chlorinator, Polaris 280, Raypack heater, and Color Logic LED lights.

    Proud user of BBB, pool school, pool calculator, TF-100, and the advice of the friendly people here!

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Quote Originally Posted by chris4150
    It is a terminology issue. It is a inline chlorinator per my pool spec sheets. Description wise, its a verticle tube that holds several 3" chlorine tablets. It has an adjuster on the back side that can be slid from closed to open with varying degrees of openess. Currently it is set a tad above the half way open mark. In regards to having a Nature 2 and ozonator, it was all part of the pool package offered by the pool builder. I have yet to insert the filter into the Nature 2 per recommendation by the "pool school" individual due to my pool being built this winter. With all this being said, Im still stumped by the stains. Ill try to get current test readings to post here tomorrow.
    Aha! darned terminology... gets us every time. So do those darn packages....it's how I ended up with my Frog .

    Without knowing what your test results are, we can't really recommend "wide open". If your CYA was very low, and your PH is fine, I might...but without knowing that....it's best to supplement the FC with liquid chlorine or bleach, for now...as that really adds nothing other than FC.

    What are those things on the steps? They look sorta like leaves?....
    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
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Hi, Chris,

    I'm sorry we have sidetracked you somewhat from the stains. What you have is an inline chlorinator and I would not suggest you use it to elevate your chlorine levels to the ppm we'll recommend. We're gonna' suggest plain ole' Clorox to get your chlorine up very high, very fast.....your chlorinator will not do that.

    Post a set of test results and be sure to include CYA so we'll know what to suggest for a "shock" level. (That's what were suggesting.....shocking your pool.)

    Now, back to your staining issue......I'm not sure I really know what hydration staining is. Did they explain it in a way that's easy to understand?
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Fruststratedpoolmom,

    The brown things on the steps are tiles....LOL....it was pretty windy when I took the pictures, thus the odd appearance.

    As far as hydration stains, I was informed that they are caused by moisture that is trapped between the gunite and plaster and that the moisture is leaching through. I was informed that such stains will eventually work themselves through the plaster and fade away And, if they were still present in 9 months they would do a lite acid wash

    But after reading some of the suggested literature in regards to my equipment set up, Im wondering if I should have gone with a SWG. My pool isnt even 5 months old and Im now wondering if I got screwed as far as an ozone generator, in-line chlorinator, and the nature 2 as being my sanitizers. Again I didnt select these items independantly, they were a packaged deal. How expensive would it be to ditch the ozone and go with a SWG?
    13,500 gallon free form Pebble Tec pool- 2 skimmers
    Pentair Intelli-Flow filter pump, Pentair Intelli-Super Flo booster pump, waterfall pump, Del Ozone Eclipse 1 generator, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge filtration, Nature 2 XG Clear Vision, In-line Chlorinator, Polaris 280, Raypack heater, and Color Logic LED lights.

    Proud user of BBB, pool school, pool calculator, TF-100, and the advice of the friendly people here!

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    chris4150's Avatar
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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Frustratedpoolmom,

    What do you mean by "pool frog"?
    13,500 gallon free form Pebble Tec pool- 2 skimmers
    Pentair Intelli-Flow filter pump, Pentair Intelli-Super Flo booster pump, waterfall pump, Del Ozone Eclipse 1 generator, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge filtration, Nature 2 XG Clear Vision, In-line Chlorinator, Polaris 280, Raypack heater, and Color Logic LED lights.

    Proud user of BBB, pool school, pool calculator, TF-100, and the advice of the friendly people here!

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    What are those things on the steps? They look sorta like leaves?....
    They look like decorative tiles to show the edge of the steps to me.

    I agree with using liquid chlorine. The clarity of your water will amaze you! It'll sparkle so much, you'll need shades to look at it! Least I need shades to look at mine. It's so shiny, it gives me a migraine.

    Thought you guys would never hear me say that! My pool is so clear and sparkly it gives me a migraine! WHEW! If I look at it without shades and come in the house real quick, I'm blind for minutes on end. I like it though! I just wear my shades. 8)
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

    24' Sharkline Venture De Filter

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    As far as hydration stains, I was informed that they are caused by moisture that is trapped between the gunite and plaster and that the moisture is leaching through.
    Well, that's new to me so I cannot comment. I would say that even plaster is somewhat porous so I cannot understand how the stains form. I'll stay out of the "why" because I have no experience but it doesn't seem very logical to me.

    An swg for your size pool may be as little as $600 if you DIY or maybe as much as $1000 if you have it done. Don't rush to an SWG until you have a good grasp of the chemistry, etc. that goes on in your pool. This forum is the best place on the internet to learn what you need to know.

    We look forward to your test results.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    The pictures look rather like copper stains to me, though it is difficult to tell for sure from a photograph. Have you been using an algaecide that contains copper?
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    chris4150's Avatar
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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    not that Im aware of. My equipment is listed in the profile if you seen something out of wack. The ozonator does its thing (not to sound uninformed), I have chlorine tablets stacked in the in-line chlorinator, and I have yet to put the cartridge in the Nature 2.
    13,500 gallon free form Pebble Tec pool- 2 skimmers
    Pentair Intelli-Flow filter pump, Pentair Intelli-Super Flo booster pump, waterfall pump, Del Ozone Eclipse 1 generator, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge filtration, Nature 2 XG Clear Vision, In-line Chlorinator, Polaris 280, Raypack heater, and Color Logic LED lights.

    Proud user of BBB, pool school, pool calculator, TF-100, and the advice of the friendly people here!

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    chris4150's Avatar
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    Re: Alleged hydration stains.

    Sorry, to better answer the primary component of your previous question, I havent purchased any algeacides to be put into my pool.
    13,500 gallon free form Pebble Tec pool- 2 skimmers
    Pentair Intelli-Flow filter pump, Pentair Intelli-Super Flo booster pump, waterfall pump, Del Ozone Eclipse 1 generator, Pentair Clean & Clear Plus Cartridge filtration, Nature 2 XG Clear Vision, In-line Chlorinator, Polaris 280, Raypack heater, and Color Logic LED lights.

    Proud user of BBB, pool school, pool calculator, TF-100, and the advice of the friendly people here!

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