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Thread: General Chemical Question

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    General Chemical Question

    Hello all, hope your season has been problem-free so far.

    I have an 18x36 rectangle inground Vinyl pool with a Hayward DE filter and an automatic chlorinator. I also have an AquaBot Turbo that I love, love, love!!!!!

    This is my second season with my pool and I was able to open it successfully. My water is clear and my levels are good I just have some general questions about adding chemicals.

    What should you add to a bucket of water and mix and what do you add directly to the pool? I know shock you obviously have to pre-dilute and pour into the pool, but what about things like phUP/phDOWN, ALKup, and Stabilizer? You also should never add anything to the skimmer except DE, right?

    Also, can you add multiple chemicals at once or should you wait between each chemical? How long should you wait between each?
    Suppose you had low pH and low free chlorine...would you add phUP, wait a day, and then shock?

    Since my water is OK, I must be doing something right but I would just like to know the rules for chemical application. Thanks!
    18x36 25000 Gallon In-Ground Pool
    Vinyl Liner
    Hayward DE-3600 Filter
    Hayward Automatic Chlorinator
    1 Skimmer, 3 Return Jets

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    Join Date
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    Cupertino, CA
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    Re: General Chemical Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow
    What should you add to a bucket of water and mix and what do you add directly to the pool? I know shock you obviously have to pre-dilute and pour into the pool, but what about things like phUP/phDOWN, ALKup, and Stabilizer?
    One rule of thumb would be to predissolve anything powdered (except CYA). Liquids can go straight in, poured slowly in front of a return jet.
    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow
    You also should never add anything to the skimmer except DE, right?
    Some people put CYA in a sock and leave that in the skimmer; you want the pump running 24x7 until it dissolves in that case.
    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow
    Also, can you add multiple chemicals at once or should you wait between each chemical? How long should you wait between each?
    Suppose you had low pH and low free chlorine...would you add phUP, wait a day, and then shock?
    I only do bleach and occasionally acid, offhand don't remember what's recommended... I usually wait about 5 minutes on days when I'm adding both bleach and acid (probably I'm supposed to wait longer ).
    --paulr
    BBB "Intermediate Swimmer"
    IG plaster pool 18.5K gal, Hayward Pro-Grid DE filter, 3/4 HP Hydramax II; Polaris 380, 3/4 HP booster
    AG spa 325 gal, probably Sundance of some kind
    Water testing instructions on one page

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    May 2007
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    Re: General Chemical Question

    Welcome to TFP.

    This article explains the various chemicals - their grocery store equivalents and how to add them.

    "My levels are good" - your idea of good and our idea of good might be different.

    You should not add multiple chems at once, always wait at least an hour between additions, the only exception being CYA in a sock, you can keep the sock in the skimmer, while pouring bleach in front of the return, for example. As a general rule keeping everything except DE out of the skimmer is a good idea, but some make exceptions to the rule and report no ill effects. I would never keep tabs in the skimmer, and if putting CYA in the skimmer you must keep the pump running while it dissolves and for a good 24-48 hours after.

    If I had Low PH and Low FC - I guess it would depend on what my TA was. But I would adjust the PH first if necessary, taking the TA into account, and then I would wait a couple hours and increase the chlorine. Low FC does not = shocking required. I haven't shocked my pool (except for going on vacation or to close it) in 2 summers.

    Hope this helps.
    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: General Chemical Question

    Thank you for your advice. I always believed that Low FC meant you HAD to shock. What's the best way to get a constant 1-3 FC, then?

    By good, I meant the test strips tell me I'm within range, but I think I should definitely get my water checked at a pool store.

    I'm considering buying onto those AquaCheck Digital Testers that give you exact numbers instead of color coding.
    18x36 25000 Gallon In-Ground Pool
    Vinyl Liner
    Hayward DE-3600 Filter
    Hayward Automatic Chlorinator
    1 Skimmer, 3 Return Jets

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    reebok's Avatar
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    Apr 2009
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    Lakeland, FL
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    Re: General Chemical Question

    consistent levels by consistent testing.
    almost everyone here has a horror story about pool store water testing being way off. the ones who don't have a story found this site before they owned a pool. have you read all the pool school articles yet?

    swg-newbie-bad-salt-green-pool-t10886.html?hilit=AquaChek%20TruTest

    aquachek-trutest-digital-test-strip-reader-kit-t5700.html?hilit=AquaChek%20TruTest

    aquachek-trutest-pool-tester-t24.html?hilit=AquaChek%20TruTest
    16x32 21,000 gallon in-ground exposed aggregate, 1.5hp pump, 120 sqft catridge filter, birdcage, solar panels, aquavac tigershark qc robot.

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: General Chemical Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow
    Thank you for your advice. I always believed that Low FC meant you HAD to shock. What's the best way to get a constant 1-3 FC, then?

    By good, I meant the test strips tell me I'm within range, but I think I should definitely get my water checked at a pool store.

    I'm considering buying onto those AquaCheck Digital Testers that give you exact numbers instead of color coding.
    Get a TF100 and use the Pool Calculator. Until then, get the water tested at the pool stealer, just don't buy anything from them yet. Strips are notoriusly inaccurate, and unfortunately the pool stealers aren't much better. Back in the day my strips said "ok" for CYA and in reality it was over 100, from the overuse of trichlor.

    The Phrase "1-3 FC" that is repeated dutifully by pool stores and industry reps is ridiculous - it doesn't factor in CYA. Your FC level is dictated by your CYA level. So if your CYA level is 70, your FC levels should be 5-8. If someone with CYA of 70 ran their pool with 1-3 FC they'd have algae for sure.

    One thing you should know is the test kits we recommend, include a drop test for FC that does not "match colors" on a comparator - it's counting drops noting color change. Its simple and easy to use and much more accurate than any test available. That's why we're so big on it 'round here.
    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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    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    NC
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    Re: General Chemical Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow
    Thank you for your advice. I always believed that Low FC meant you HAD to shock. What's the best way to get a constant 1-3 FC, then?
    By good, I meant the test strips tell me I'm within range, but I think I should definitely get my water checked at a pool store.
    I'm considering buying onto those AquaCheck Digital Testers that give you exact numbers instead of color coding.
    If you are looking at a FC of 1-3 you will get algae. Check out the Chlorine/CYA charts in pool shcool: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...ya_chart_shock
    If the CYA is 40 then your FC should be close to 5, with a shock value of 16.

    Strips will never cut it when it comes to measuring. Check the forums, but I wouldn't trust the electronic meter either.
    I started that way and was burned (green water, YUK) when the strips said that everything was fine. For me, it's nothing but drop test.
    Triad Region of NC
    18x37 Vinyl IG (24,000 gal.), BBB & GoldLine AquaLogic PS4 SWG, Hayward 1 HP Superpump / Hayward Sand Filter / Polaris 280 cleaner / 6 deck jets / Sheer Descent Waterfall (in coping) / Brick Red Concrete Coping / Stamped Concrete Deck
    Lots of oak trees, maple trees, *and* leaves!

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    Join Date
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    Re: General Chemical Question

    yes listen to pool mom she knows what she is talking about....
    live in eastern washington state
    18x36, Vinyl inground 24k
    Hayward 1 hp filter pump
    1 skimmer/2 returns
    24" sand filter, polaris 280 with booster pump.

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