1. ## My Story.

Hi There.

This is my first post. I have never own the pool before and have some questions about the upkeep. The house that I recently purchased has a kidney shaped pool.

The pool was not covered during the fall and winter. During that time we have several fires in the area and strong Santa Anna winds that blew the dust and ash in to the pool. The pool had the Polaris cleaning vacuum, but it would not pickup the ash and dust so I unplugged it and bought Barracuda 4 system that sweeps the floor pretty good. I already cleaned the filter once and the current filter pressure is about 12 PSI. The filter runs 8 hrs everyday from 8am to 4pm. The previous owner had some leftover chemicals, so I was adding chlorine every couple of days. It seems that everything was OK. About a month ago I notice green algae growing on the left side wall by the steps. I shocked the pool several times and scrubbed the walls with the brush, but after several days the algae would comeback. Recently the leftover chemicals ran out and I had to buy more. Not reading the information on the web, I went to the Home Depot and purchased two buckets of Chlorine (the powder and tablets). I was shocked, surprised and amazed that two buckets of chlorine would cost me over \$160. Luckily I did not opened the buckets yet. I have the test kit that can measure pH, Chlorine, TA, Bromine. In order to know how much chemicals to add I need to know the water volume of the pool.

I took the measurements yesterday,

My Free Chlorine is approximatly 0ppm but my test gauge says that ideal result is between 0 and 0.5 ppm.
The Total Chlorine is 5.0. It says that is TC > FC, then I need to shock the water.
The pH is 7.6ppm
The TA is 300ppm.

Questions:

1. How do I calculate the volume of the kidney shaped pools? My guesstimate is 13,000 to 15,000 gal, but I am not sure.

To lower the TA, I will need to reduce the pH level to 7.0 and then aerate the pool to increase the pH.

2. How do I aerate the pool.

My test kit does not have the Cyanuric Acid (CYA) test, but I will get the Leslie's test kit today. I guess I need to know the CYA level for shocking the pool. I looked at the Chlorine/CYA Chart by Chemgeek but so far I am still not sure how to read it.

3. If the CYA is high (above 60), is there a way to reduce it w/o draining water? I do not have the pump to take the water out.

You suggestions are greatly appreciated and sorry for the long post.

2. ## Re: My Story.

1. thepoolcalculator.com
2. I recommend buying some cheap pvc and making it work for you (depends on how your returns are set up.) see these posts for some pictures:
my-aerator-t7799.html
i-don-t-have-eyeballs-on-my-returns-t12154.html
pool-school/lowering%20total%20alkalinity
3. no

do you have pool stores that sell liquid chlorine? if so, compare that price to regular household bleach (same thing, less concentrated). here is the right way to shock your pool:
pool-school/shocking_your_pool
you need to know your cya first, ideally. also, it seems like you need to read through all the pool school articles.
pool-school/

also, it's unlikely leslies has the right test kit in stock. don't get the dpd one, you need the fas-dpd. the item # is 81329, I would make sure you see that on the kit if they say they have it. most people here recommend the kit from www.tftestkits.net if you're going to have to order one anyway.

3. ## Re: My Story.

Originally Posted by astroprojector
...have never own the pool before...previous owner had some leftover chemicals, so I was adding chlorine every couple of days...About a month ago I notice algae growing on the left side wall by the steps...shocked the pool several times and scrubbed the wall but the algae would comeback...leftover chemicals ran out...went to the Home Depot, two buckets of Chlorine (the powder and tablets)...was shocked, surprised and amazed that two buckets of chlorine would cost me \$160..did not opened the buckets...have the test kit, measures pH, Chlorine, TA, Bromine...I need to know the water volume of the pool to add chemicals.
My Free Chlorine is approximatly 0ppm but my test gauge says that ideal result is between 0 and 0.5 ppm.
The CC should be between 0.0 and 0.5 but your test kit probably won't measure that.

The Total Chlorine is 5.0. It says that is TC > FC, then I need to shock the water.
The pH is 7.6ppm
The TA is 300ppm.
1. calculate the volume of the kidney shaped pools? My guesstimate is 13,000 to 15,000 gal.
Use the lower part of Jasons Pool Calculator, and figure the length x the width (narrow part) x average depth of a rectangular pool. That'll even out for the extra width on the side (+) and the lack of square corners(-). Using an Oval may get you accurate, but that's how you'll get in the ballpark anyway.

2. How do I aerate the pool.
Do you have any fountains, etc? If not you can rig up a hose going from your pool cleaner outlet that just shoots up in the air and makes lots of spashes on the way down, OR have a wicked pool party .

My test kit does not have the Cyanuric Acid (CYA) test, but I will get the Leslie's test kit today...need to know the CYA level for shocking the pool...looked at the Chlorine/CYA Chart by Chemgeek but so far I am still not sure how to read it.
Find the CYA level on the left, the minimum and target FC levels are columns 2 & 3, the shock value of the FC is column 4.

3. If the CYA is high (above 60), is there a way to reduce it w/o draining water? I do not have the pump to take the water out.
Nope, you have to replace the water: partial drain and fill or LOTS of splashout and refill. There is not other way, BUT you need to know before you start that process.
Where does the "waste" from the valve go to? You can use it to pump some water out of the pool, just make sure that you don't take the level below the skimmer or if you have a main drain you can take all of the suction side (from pool to pump) from there.
First, WELCOME TO TFP!

We all started out the same way; lots of questions (except the chemists, engineers, and lifetime pool-jocks in the group) .

Take a water sample by the pool store and they'll be glad to test it for you. Ignore anything that they try to sell you. You are interested in the FC, CC, and CYA right now.

Take the buckets of chemicals and return them to the big orange store for \$\$ if you can.
Stop at wallyworld and pickup the amount of plain 6% bleach that you'll need for the next 6 days (see Jason's Pool Calculator at http://www.poolcalculator.com/
I'd still recommend that you get the TF-100 from duraleigh at http://www.tftestkits.net/. It's a good deal and most of us use them, or the Taylor K2006. I've had both and prefer the TF100.

Go slowly, use "uncommon" sense, and measure in the evening and again in the morning.

4. ## Re: My Story.

Originally Posted by fuzzy_dba
Originally Posted by astroprojector
...have never own the pool before...previous owner had some leftover chemicals, so I was adding chlorine every couple of days...About a month ago I notice algae growing on the left side wall by the steps...shocked the pool several times and scrubbed the wall but the algae would comeback...leftover chemicals ran out...went to the Home Depot, two buckets of Chlorine (the powder and tablets)...was shocked, surprised and amazed that two buckets of chlorine would cost me \$160..did not opened the buckets...have the test kit, measures pH, Chlorine, TA, Bromine...I need to know the water volume of the pool to add chemicals.
My Free Chlorine is approximatly 0ppm but my test gauge says that ideal result is between 0 and 0.5 ppm.
The CC should be between 0.0 and 0.5 but your test kit probably won't measure that.

The Total Chlorine is 5.0. It says that is TC > FC, then I need to shock the water.
The pH is 7.6ppm
The TA is 300ppm.
1. calculate the volume of the kidney shaped pools? My guesstimate is 13,000 to 15,000 gal.
Use the lower part of Jasons Pool Calculator, and figure the length x the width (narrow part) x average depth of a rectangular pool. That'll even out for the extra width on the side (+) and the lack of square corners(-). Using an Oval may get you accurate, but that's how you'll get in the ballpark anyway.

2. How do I aerate the pool.
Do you have any fountains, etc? If not you can rig up a hose going from your pool cleaner outlet that just shoots up in the air and makes lots of spashes on the way down, OR have a wicked pool party .

My test kit does not have the Cyanuric Acid (CYA) test, but I will get the Leslie's test kit today...need to know the CYA level for shocking the pool...looked at the Chlorine/CYA Chart by Chemgeek but so far I am still not sure how to read it.
Find the CYA level on the left, the minimum and target FC levels are columns 2 & 3, the shock value of the FC is column 4.

3. If the CYA is high (above 60), is there a way to reduce it w/o draining water? I do not have the pump to take the water out.
Nope, you have to replace the water: partial drain and fill or LOTS of splashout and refill. There is not other way, BUT you need to know before you start that process.
Where does the "waste" from the valve go to? You can use it to pump some water out of the pool, just make sure that you don't take the level below the skimmer or if you have a main drain you can take all of the suction side (from pool to pump) from there.
First, WELCOME TO TFP!

We all started out the same way; lots of questions (except the chemists, engineers, and lifetime pool-jocks in the group) .

Take a water sample by the pool store and they'll be glad to test it for you. Ignore anything that they try to sell you. You are interested in the FC, CC, and CYA right now.

Take the buckets of chemicals and return them to the big orange store for \$\$ if you can.
Stop at wallyworld and pickup the amount of plain 6% bleach that you'll need for the next 6 days (see Jason's Pool Calculator at http://www.poolcalculator.com/
I'd still recommend that you get the TF-100 from duraleigh at http://www.tftestkits.net/. It's a good deal and most of us use them, or the Taylor K2006. I've had both and prefer the TF100.

Go slowly, use "uncommon" sense, and measure in the evening and again in the morning.
I have the line for the Polaris vacuum that pumps water in to the pool. I can attached a hose to it and make some kind of fountain, so that is not a problem. Should I leave the aeration over or stop and continue the next day? Is swimming permitted while I lower pH and aerate the pool?

I assume the skimmer is the part of the pool where I would connect the hose for the Barracuda vacuum. If that the case I can open the filter back wash and just drain the water through the filter, correct?

I am going to order the TF-100, but what do I do in the while it is being shipped? Can I still test the water using the kit I have and adjust pH and Chlorine as needed?

5. ## Re: My Story.

The previous owner had some leftover chemicals, so I was adding chlorine every couple of days. It seems that everything was OK. About a month ago I notice green algae growing on the left side wall by the steps. I shocked the pool several times and scrubbed the walls with the brush, but after several days the algae would comeback.
That's because you are, in effect, killing some of the algae each day but never really killing it completely. The goal is an algae free pool.

I have the line for the Polaris vacuum that pumps water in to the pool. I can attached a hose to it and make some kind of fountain, so that is not a problem. Is swimming permitted while I lower pH and aerate the pool?
Yes on the fountain, but Your CC is high so until the pool is shocked I would not swim in it.

If that the case I can open the filter back wash and just drain the water through the filter, correct?
Backwashing will do 2 things: First, it'll drain some of the water, forcing a refill which will decrease the CYA. Second, it'll clean some of the stuff out of the filter.

My Free Chlorine is approximatly 0ppm but my test gauge says that ideal result is between 0 and 0.5 ppm. The Total Chlorine is 5.0.
If your TC is 5.0 and your FC is 0.0 then you have CC (the bad or used up chlorine) of 5.0. That means that you have organic's in the pool which you don't want. You need to shock the pool when the CC level is over 0.5.
Please read and re-read the articles in pool school http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-school/. It'll explain in much better detail than I can.

6. ## Re: My Story.

It looks like aeration can take several days. Do I leave aeration over night or stop and continue the next day.

7. ## Re: My Story.

whatever you want. obviously it will be faster if you do it more often. I run mine when the pump is on its normal cycle. to me it's not worth wasting money (running the pump longer) for something like that. to others it may be worth it. the main thing is, you want the ph to rise back up. that's what the aeration is doing. some have reported lowering it to 7.0 then raising it to 7.2 (with aeration) and lowering it back to 7 works quickest.

8. ## Re: My Story.

What is the order of things to do?

I will take water sample and test at the local pool store (the TF-100 will arrive next week). Should I deal with CYA and shock firts and then aerate, or other way arround?

9. ## Re: My Story.

Originally Posted by astroprojector
What is the order of things to do? ...the TF-100 will arrive next week. Should I deal with CYA and shock firts and then aerate, or other way arround?
You don't know what the CYA is, but you do presume that it's high: You don't really know, except you have algae @5ppm.

Go to the CYA/Chlorine chart in Pool School and boost the chlorine to the levels for a CYA of 20, keep it there for a couple of days or until you get actual measurements. Then go from there.
The shock level may have to go up further or it may go down (doubtful), but that's a safe plan of action until you know what you have.

In addition, there's no point in aerating to drop the TA until the PH is dropped to the levels indicated in http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...l%20alkalinity.
The TA and PH will both come down then the aeration is used to increase the PH without increasing the TA but only after the PH is decreased, usually with muratic acid or dry acid.

10. ## Re: My Story.

Originally Posted by fuzzy_dba
Originally Posted by astroprojector
What is the order of things to do? ...the TF-100 will arrive next week. Should I deal with CYA and shock firts and then aerate, or other way arround?
You don't know what the CYA is, but you do presume that it's high: You don't really know, except you have algae @5ppm.

Go to the CYA/Chlorine chart in Pool School and boost the chlorine to the levels for a CYA of 20, keep it there for a couple of days or until you get actual measurements. Then go from there.
The shock level may have to go up further or it may go down (doubtful), but that's a safe plan of action until you know what you have.

In addition, there's no point in aerating to drop the TA until the PH is dropped to the levels indicated in http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...l%20alkalinity.
The TA and PH will both come down then the aeration is used to increase the PH without increasing the TA but only after the PH is decreased, usually with muratic acid or dry acid.
I did read the articles but I some of the stuff still unclear, so I appreciate the patience. The FC should be between 0 and 0.5, however, the chart just have integer values. Is it assumed that for CYA 20, Min FC is 0.2, Target FC is 0.5 and Shock Value is 1?

11. ## Re: My Story.

There isn't any CYA level at which you want FC to be as low as 0.5. If CYA is 20, you want FC to be between 2.0 and 5.0 and never below 2.0.

12. ## Re: My Story.

I went to the local Walmart to buy bleach. The store had 3 kinds, 2 no name brand that do not diplay the 6% anywhere on the sticker and the other one was Clorox Bleach Regular which displayed the 6%. The price for Clorox was \$4.55 for 1.82 gal. The other were \$1.79 gal and \$3.77 for \$1.82 gal. I was not sure about the no name brands since they did not display the %, and I also read that Clorox may add some other stuff into the bleach and it is not recomended. Am I wrong about regular Clorox?
Also,

My current test kit does not display anything more the 5ppm for CL, so if I want to shock the pool, I want be able to do it until I get the TF-100.

13. ## Re: My Story.

well, your main problem is not knowing your cya. you can estimate the amount you need for shocking with www.thepoolcalculator.com but again, it depends on your cya level. did you at least take your water to leslies for testing? if not, I would do that so you can at least get started on what should be the correct chlorine/cya ratio.
what is no name? great value brand? if you give more info someone here can probably tell you the %. walmart has their msds sheets online, so it's pretty easy to find out, but you've gotta have more info than two no name brands.
the CC should be .5 or less. that's completely different from FC. pool-school/pool_water_chemistry

14. ## Re: My Story.

Originally Posted by astroprojector
...Walmart had 3 kinds, 2 no name brand that do not diplay the 6% anywhere on the sticker and the other one was Clorox Bleach Regular which displayed the 6%. The price for Clorox was \$4.55 for 1.82 gal. The other were \$1.79 gal and \$3.77 for \$1.82 gal. I was not sure about the no name brands since they did not display the %, and I also read that Clorox may add some other stuff into the bleach and it is not recomended. Am I wrong about regular Clorox?
Also,
My current test kit does not display anything more the 5ppm for CL, so if I want to shock the pool, I want be able to do it until I get the TF-100.
The "Great Value" brand at Wal-mart should have said "Ultra Bleach" and on the back of the label in small print stated "6% Sodium Hypochorite 94% inert/inactive ingredients". The "sodium hypochorite" is the only active ingredient and is what you want. The inactive ingredients are, for all intents and purposes, water and salt. The amount that you will be using will not add any appreciable salt to the pool and it won't hurt things anyway.

The assumption is that you have 20ppm of CYA. In reality you probably have much more BUT since we don't know for sure we'll assume a minimal value.
From the Pool School, Chlorine/CYA Chart, the values for the FC (Free Chlorine) that you need to shock the pool is FC=10.
In order to increase the FC from 0 to 10...
1. Go to the Pool Calculator: http://www.poolcalculator.com/
2. Enter the volume of the pool at the top left, assume 15,000 gal for now.
3. In the FC area (yellow) enter a 0 in the first box (starting value) and 10 in the second box (target value).
4. Click on jug size of 174 oz. (Wal-Mart's generic ultra bleach, big jug's)
5. The "add" block tells you that you need to add "311 oz" of 6% bleach. To me that's just under 2 big jugs as 2 full jugs would be 348 oz. (174*2=348 oz.).
6. With the pump running 24 hours a day, pour the bleach *slowly* into the return of the pool. The return is the jet of water coming back into the pool from the filter.
The reason to pour slowly is so that it doesn't splash (bleached clothes?) and so that the chlorine has a chance to mix with the pool water.
7. We're taking the FC level to 10 and your test kit won't measure that high. You can get in the "ballpark" by using 1 part pool water and 2 parts distilled water for the chlorine test with your test kit.
This is optional and I wouldn't bother until you hit step 8 in the morning.
8. Take a sample of your water to the pool store to have it checked.
You are interested in all of the values, but particularily the FC, CC, PH, TA, and CYA. The TC is nothing more than the FC+CC added together.

The reason that this is safe process is that you have been using a product that is a combination chlorine & CYA so your CYA level is probably way over 60, and that would require a shock level of 24. You've had algae and a CC level over 0.5 so you need to shock the pool. We're raising the FC level to 10, which is a safe value until we know more.

If you have more questions just ask. I'm not an expert but I've been there too. 8)

15. ## Re: My Story.

Originally Posted by astroprojector
1. How do I calculate the volume of the kidney shaped pools? My guesstimate is 13,000 to 15,000 gal, but I am not sure.
I also have an irregular pool; it's mildly tricky so be willing to change your mind over time.

First step is to guesstimate the surface area in square feet. From your pic, it looks like you can approximate it as a triangle with an extra blob on the right. Graph paper, or a teenager in geometry class, would be helpful there. Or measure the long side, then the distance from that to the peak of the triangle. long-side x peak x 1/2 is the area of the triangle.

Then you guesstimate the average depth of each section. Again, looks like the triangle part is largely the shallow end, and the blob is the deep end. Pick some kind of average for each area. We're getting a first cut here, refine it later.

Do area x avg depth for each section. That gives you volume in cubic feet. Multiply by 7.48 to get gallons.

Once your pool is balanced, you can refine the estimate based on how the pool reacts to chemicals. For my pool, the first guess was 20k, but I kept overshooting the FC, so I knew that was too high. Ratcheted down to 18k and that was close. Dragged my 8th-grader out to help take more careful measurements, and got my current guess of 18.5k.

Total precision is really not the point of pool work, though. I have about 600 sq ft surface area, so only 2" either way is about 750 gal difference. Just pay attention to what your pool tells you, and you'll be fine.
--paulr

16. ## Re: My Story.

Just came back from Leslie's with the water test results.

FC=5
TC=5
pH=7.8
TA=160
CH=350
CYA=50
TDS=2300

My pool volume is 15500 Gal

It looks like my test using the tesk that I have is way off. I ordered the kit today and will arrice next Friday.

It's too late to do anything right now, so I will start in the morning.

I pluged the numbers in the calculator and this is what I got.

FC from 5 to 20 - add 482 oz of 6% bleach
pH from 7.8 to 7.6 and to lower the TA from 160 to 100 - add 14 oz of muriatic acid
CH from 350 to 260 - I have to drain 26% of the pool and refill it with CH 0 water.
CYA 50 to 50 - do nothing
Suggested FC to Shock the pool - 16, Master Algae Shock 29.

17. ## Re: My Story.

If your water is clear, then there is no need to shock the pool and your current FC level is fine. If the water is cloudy or murky, then you do want to shock the pool and should raise FC to 16.

I suggest lowering PH down to 7.2. That will help with your currently slightly high TA and CH levels.

In the long run you will want to lower the TA level, but there isn't any rush on that. It should come down naturally over time.

Your CH level is acceptable, slightly high, but no need to do anything about it right away.

CYA is good where it is.

TDS doesn't matter at all.

18. ## Re: My Story.

I shocked the pool today anyway because I do have small traces of algae of the walls. I brought the FC to 20, at least that what I it is based on the calculation. Since I do not have the test kit yet, I wont be able to test the FC until it drops to below 5. The water is clear and I will drop the pH to 7.2. Once the FC goes down to below 5 I might shock it again, just to get rid of the algae.

19. ## Re: My Story.

Finally got the test kit today and here are the first results

FC=4
CC=0
TC=4
pH=7.8
TA=250
CYA =100 - I tested it 3 times and got the same results. Basically I stop seeing the dot right about 100 line. Leslie's test showed 60.

From this results I can see that I need to lower the TA and pH. I will lower the pH to 7.0 and then areate the pool. Also, I am not sure who's CYA test is correct mine or Leslie's. I hope it is Leslie's, because I really do not want to drain the pool. For now I will vring the FC to 7 and monitor the situation.

Please tell me if I am wrong on my assumptions.

20. ## Re: My Story.

In the CYA test, you pour stuff into the view tube until you totally can't see the black dot. It's sometimes helpful to move the tube around a little bit, eyes are better at detecting motion/changes. Also indirect full sun (outdoors with your back to the sun) is the best lighting situation.

If you really do think it's 100+, you can dilute your sample 50/50 with tap water and try again. Double the result of course.
--paulr

Page 1 of 2 12 Last

#### Posting Permissions

• You may not post new threads
• You may not post replies
• You may not post attachments
• You may not edit your posts
•