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Thread: Newbie with green water please help

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    Newbie with green water please help

    So my pool is green. I took a sample to the pool store and they said all my levels were reading real low. They gave me 20lbs of Total Alk to put into the pool an hour later they told me to put 10lbs of Ph+ into the pool slowly then an hour later I had to put 6 lbs of durashock into the skimmer. I did all this last night and was done around 10pm.



    Today I woke up checked the water and it shows NO change. It's still the same color green. The pool guy said to backwash it 2-3 times a day so I did that before I left for work, but the thing is the water is coming out clear from the backwash.



    I'm trying to find out if I'm doing something wrong, is there a more cost-effective way to get the water blue. To date I've spent $300 between getting the pool opened and buying the chemicals and still I have not been able to get in. Any help would be appreciated.

    27 ft. round above ground pool.

    ok here's what i found out from pool store:
    chlorine is over
    ph is 6.8
    alkalinity is 0
    Rob

  2. Back To Top    #2
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Welcome to TFP!

    There are several inexpensive chemicals you can buy at the grocery store that you can use instead of the expensive pool store chemicals. The BBB method uses bleach, borax, and baking soda instead of chlorine tablets, shock, PH up, and alkalinity increaser. You can read more about it by visiting The Stickies section of the site, see the link in the sub-heading of the page.

    The best investment in your pool you can make is a good test kit. The TF Test Kit is a wonderful kit from a company that ships quickly.

    You need to bring your chlorine level up and hold it at a high level for several days. To do that correctly we need to know your CYA level. It would also be nice to see a full set of numbers from after all the additions you made. In the mean time, stock up on several gallons of unscented ultra bleach from the grocery store.

    When you attack the algae you want to make a concerted effort all at once, adding chlorine two or three times a day.
    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

  3. Back To Top    #3
    thanks for the advice I just ordered the kit. My next question is:
    We've been going at this for about 2 weeks now. What would happen if we just emptied the pool completely and then just started off fresh with new water?
    Rob

  4. Back To Top    #4
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    If you are diligent about adding chlorine to the correct level two or three times a day, which requires a good test kit, the whole process will be over in about a week. For an above ground pool draining and refilling can be a reasonable alternative if done carefully. You will need to rinse the liner with a dilute bleach solution before refilling to avoid getting algae again instantly. The danger is that the algae can get started again in the first few days after refilling while you don't have your CYA level up high enough to be able to hold a chlorine level during the day. Some careful cleaning can avoid that, but there is always some risk.
    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

  5. Back To Top    #5


    Did your water just like slowly turn green from blue or clear, or did it turn green like suddenly after you added something to it, prior to going to the pool store and getting the chemicals that you mentioned above?
    Fort Wayne IG Vinyl 18 x 36 (22,000 G)
    3/4 hp Pentair Pump
    Sand Filter
    Polaris 280 w/ booster pump
    Chlorine
    No heater yet...solar cover
    Mount Airy, NC

  6. Back To Top    #6
    It happened after we vacuumed the bottom. It went through the vacuum and came out on the return right back and now it's on top and turned the whole water green.
    Rob

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    Backglass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TB1228
    What would happen if we just emptied the pool completely and then just started off fresh with new water?
    One thing that I have learned in my many years of pool ownership is that H20 itself doesn't go bad or get changed to something else. It all the junk IN the H20 you have to get out! :P

    OK, thats an oversimplification but unless you have to replace a liner or dumped a bunch of motor oil in your pool, you shouldn't have to drain completely (and I understand there are even enzymes now for motor oil).

    Hang around here for awhile and you will learn a TON. I thought I was a pool expert until coming to this place. Now I am learning all about the joys of Borates.

  8. Back To Top    #8
    Ok so I went and had the water tested today. I wrote down everything I needed to know, here's what I got back:

    Alkalinity 160
    pH 7.6
    total chlorine 3.0
    calcium hardness 200
    stabilizer 60

    Any advice?
    Rob

  9. Back To Top    #9
    With a CYA (stabilizer) value of 60, you need 20 ppm of chlorine to shock your pool (as per Ben's best guess chart, linked in my sigature). Test frequently (2-3 or even more times a day) and add bleach to get your level up to 20. Each gallon (not jug) of 6% bleach will raise your FC by about 4ppm.

    When your pool will hold that 20 overnight, let your chlorine drift down to normal (5-10)

    Other numbers look ok. your alk could come down a smidge, but I wouldn't worry about it.

    8000 gallon 20' x 48" round vinyl frame pool, 12" sand filter (don't have the specs on the pump), TF100 test kit
    Handy Links: PoolMath, TF-100 Test Kit, Pool School, CYA-Chlorine Chart
    "Shock" is a process, not a product!

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Ok so the water is still green, a cloudy green but green nonetheless. I went back to the pool store and they told me to hit it with more chlorine. Anyway, my concern to them was that EVERY SINGLE TIME i backwash my water comes out clear from start to finish then when I turn it to rinse the water starts out clear then turns brown, so I keep it on rinse until it turns clear then I switch to filter. However, once I switch it to filter brown water shoots out the blower (thing that blows out the water not the skimmer the other thing). I asked if this was normal, he said it's ok and just not to rinse anymore. So just now I just tried to backwash then switch to filter without rinsing, but the same thing happened with the blower blowing out brown water. What could be the problem?
    Rob

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Is this a new pool? Or a new to you pool?

    Regarding the backwashing issue, it almost sounds to me that either a) something is plumbed improperly, or b) your multiport valve is messed up/labeled/installed improperly, or c) (no offense) you don't have a good grasp on the backwashing process.

    Are you turning off your filter before switching the valve?

    (RETURN is the word you are grasping for, where the water returns to the pool)

    In any case, you still have an algae bloom going on, so you still need to keep your chlorine up to 20. Even if your filter is messed up and cannot filter the stuff out, the bleach will at least kill it. Dead algae makes the water cloudy, but it will no longer be green.

    8000 gallon 20' x 48" round vinyl frame pool, 12" sand filter (don't have the specs on the pump), TF100 test kit
    Handy Links: PoolMath, TF-100 Test Kit, Pool School, CYA-Chlorine Chart
    "Shock" is a process, not a product!

  12. Back To Top    #12
    The pool is new to me, I just bought the house and the pool came with it. I've been doing everything the pool people and the forums have been telling me to do. I make sure I unplug my filter before switching gears. I changed the spider gasket which is now working perfectly. Still I have the same problem and green water.

    I've now had this problem for 3 weeks and have spent over $500 with still not being much better off then when I started. Everyone told me not to drain it cause it would be expensive but I've paid $500 had my filter running 24/7 (electric bill) and had to refill my pool with lost water on numerous occasions. So how much have I really saved by not draining it in the first place, cause bottom line, the pool is still green?
    Rob

  13. Back To Top    #13

    Join Date
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    Location
    Spring Hill, FL
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    In the beginning you said that that leaves that you vac came out the return?
    What kind of filter do you have?
    14K Gallon IG Diamond Brite Finish
    24SF DE Filter

  14. Back To Top    #14
    Could this be metal in the water?
    Fort Wayne IG Vinyl 18 x 36 (22,000 G)
    3/4 hp Pentair Pump
    Sand Filter
    Polaris 280 w/ booster pump
    Chlorine
    No heater yet...solar cover
    Mount Airy, NC

  15. Back To Top    #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Edgie311
    In the beginning you said that that leaves that you vac came out the return?
    What kind of filter do you have?
    not leaves, just brown stuff. I have a sand filter., haywood.
    Rob

  16. Back To Top    #16
    I would go back to the pool store and have them test for metals in the water. Iron and Copper especially. You have bought enough chemicals from them that they should be happy to test it for you.

    Did you fill this pool from scratch yourself, or inherit this water? If the water was already there, it could already have some metal control stuff in it, just not enough, or not the right kind. Take a sample from the pool, and a sample from the fill water source.


    If it is an issue with metals, refilling with the same source won't do you any good.

    If you do have metals, make sure if you get a metal sesquesterent that says Hydroxyethylidene Diphosphonic Acid. A lot of people have used the "Metal Free" product and have said it does not work for them.

    Mostly here they recommend Jack's Magic products for this.

    Whenever my metal control stuff is low, like when the kids splash out a lot of water and refill without telling me, and I add a good bit of chlorine, I get green water with brown stuff in the filter, but I am using paper filters, until I put more metal control stuff into the water. Then it turns instantly blue.


    If the brown stuff that you are talking about is like rust, you might have to vacuum to waste to get rid of it I have seen others say. I do not have a good understanding of how sand filters work. But I have seen others advised to do this.

    It might not even be a metals issue, but you seem to have tried everything else
    Fort Wayne IG Vinyl 18 x 36 (22,000 G)
    3/4 hp Pentair Pump
    Sand Filter
    Polaris 280 w/ booster pump
    Chlorine
    No heater yet...solar cover
    Mount Airy, NC

  17. Back To Top    #17
    It turns out the hoses were connected the wrong way, the return hose which should have been connected to the top of the filter valve was connected the bottom one. so that's why everytime I backwashed it came out clear. Whooo I'm sooo happy, me & my family got in the pool for the first time yesterday. Thanks to everyone that offered assistance, I do appreciate it.
    Rob

  18. Back To Top    #18

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Houston, Texas, USA
    Posts
    148
    Quote Originally Posted by TB1228
    It turns out the hoses were connected the wrong way, the return hose which should have been connected to the top of the filter valve was connected the bottom one. so that's why everytime I backwashed it came out clear. Whooo I'm sooo happy, me & my family got in the pool for the first time yesterday. Thanks to everyone that offered assistance, I do appreciate it.
    Congratulations! Now that the pool is swimmable, take some time to read up on what it takes to keep it that way (which is very little if you stay on top of things). With your cya of 60, I would recommend to stay away from trichlor pucks and dichlor granules. You will need to maintain 7.0 ppm free chlorine at all times to prevent green algae. Also you don't need to add any more calcium, so shy away from cal-hypo granules (you need very little if any calcium in a vinyl pool). That said, bleach or chlorinating liquid would be the best source of chlorine for you.

    Ask questions whenever you need to. We are here to help so don't be shy!
    Poor Man's Pool
    Doughboy 18 ft round above ground
    7600 gal with center drain
    Pentair sand filter, 1 HP pump
    50 ppm borates
    "I know just enough to be dangerous"
    Pool Calc Ver 1.41 (Excel)

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