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Thread: Cloudy water just won't clear

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    Cloudy water just won't clear

    Okay, it's been a month now since we discovered our pool had turned into a swamp. Using the guidance in pool school and elsewhere on the board, we've been nursing it back to health ever since.

    I must admit: We live in Canada and have not been able to purchase either of the test kits the board recommends. That said, our pool store does use what appears to be good reagents and testing apparatus (not dip sticks!).

    Have been bleaching per Pool School to sustain the chlorine levels and I am confident the algae is all dead. What's left though is cloudy water. (Mind you, I could see the drain in the deep end for the first time yesterday.) It looks a bit like Lake Louise. It would almost be pretty if it weren't my POOL!!!

    On the weekend, I took the top off the filter and gently hosed down the sand for almost two hours (per the guidance I read about here!). Lots of bugs, bits of the last two solar blankets, and milky water came out. The sand itself seemed fine.

    I wanted to add diatomaceous earth, but I can't get the pool-grade stuff here in my town. It would have to be shipped and I'd be looking at $100+ for a small bag. At this time, that's a "no can do." I have, however, added a few of those aluminum "clarifying" tablets over the past two weeks. They haven't hurt, but I don't know if they've made any significant difference to the clarity.

    Anyway, after all this, the water is much better but still murky.

    Here are the most recent numbers (as given to me by the pool store. Apart from strips, this is my only testing option at this time):

    CY: 30 (down from 50 over the last month)
    TDS: 4700
    Salt: 3200
    Total Chlorine: 5
    Free Chlorine: 5
    pH: 7.6
    TA: 147
    Adjusted TA: 147
    CH 212

    Tested for phosphates and came up with 3,000 ppm.
    No iron. No copper.

    Of course, they want to sell me phosphate remover. I declined.

    It's been over a month. My POP is wearing thin....really, really thin. Is it my water chemistry or my filter that's causing the stubborn cloudiness???
    72,000 litre (19,000 US gallon)
    Vinyl liner
    Living and swimming in beautiful British Columbia.

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    In the Industry

    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    SWSuburban Chicago, IL

    Re: Cloudy water just won't clear

    You can order the K-2006 from Apollo in Canada

    Without it you are really guessing and while the pool store "looks" accurate, that means nothing, I hate to say.

    A FC of 5 means they aren't testing with the FAS-DPD test, and that is what you need to clear your pool. Once you have that test, and you are able to keep your FC up to shock level, your pool will clear.
    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
    Perfectly Clear Pool Service, Find me on Facebook!

  3. Back To Top    #3
    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Silver Spring, MD

    Re: Cloudy water just won't clear

    There are only three possibilities. The algae might not be dead. The filter might be malfunctioning in some way. Or there might be something in the water that the filter can't filter out.

    It is very difficult to be sure if all of the algae is really dead without either a FAS-DPD chlorine test or the water clearing up. You can get the Taylor K-2006 in Canada from Apollo Pools. It is kind of expensive, but well worth it.

    There are several possible sources of filter problems. Does the filter pressure go up over time? Is the water very dirty when you backwash? If both of those are yes, then the filter is probably working. The best possible outcome at this point is if the filter was channelized and your recent sand cleaning has resettled the sand so that it is now working correctly.

    Things that the filter can't filter out both rare are usually cleared up by clarifier very quickly.
    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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    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Cupertino, CA

    Re: Cloudy water just won't clear

    Quote Originally Posted by skali
    What's left though is cloudy water. (Mind you, I could see the drain in the deep end for the first time yesterday.)
    So, progress! Sand filters can take a while to clear up a pool, sounds like you're getting there it's just taking a long time.
    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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