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Thread: Help!! About to give up after first test!

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    Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Hello. After reading this forum ALL weekend we decided to order to TF100 Kit (I think that's right?). In the meantime we continued w/our cheap test strips from Walmart and have been adding ALOT of bleach to take care of the algae outbreak we were starting to get. While the water is clear as can be now, we have finally been able to test the water w/the kit. Here are our results.

    FC 1
    PH 7.2
    TA 380
    CH 250
    CYA 15

    According to the calculator we need more bleach (96oz), Baking soda 92oz. or 80 oz. by volume (which I don't understand), 182oz. Borax, 22 oz Cal Chloride and 49 oz. Stabilizer. We have the Stingy Sticks still left w/Stabilzer in them that we've had in the pool skimmer. I'm sorry I don't know the brand right now.

    I know it's early, but we're about to head back to the Pool Store! I'm not a chemist! Please stop us!!! We've read Pool School several times and just when I think I get it...I don't! Between my husband and I both and all of you surely we can figure this out. It just seems very $$$. I thought this would save money?

    Another ??, will we ever be able to swim again? When will it be safe? The weather here in TN (besides afternoon T-Storms) is beginning to be perfect for swimming.

    Thanks in advance!
    24ft. AG, 13,500 Gallons
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    reebok's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    you need to do the combined chlorine test also. follow the directions on the tf100 for the fas-dpd test and don't stop until you've done cc's. borax is optional, I wouldn't worry about it yet. you need some more cya for sure though. you definitely don't want baking soda, so it doesn't look like you're using the pool calculator correctly. you put your current values in the left hand column, and your target values in the right hand. see pool school for a more detailed explanation. pool-school/
    and don't lose hope. I just figured out that in the last 40 days I've spent $7.06 on chlorine for my pool and used a half gallon of acid which costs 4.50 per gallon, and that's it :)
    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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    monkeywrench's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    I concur, I do not believe you are using the calculator correctly, and yes we are stopping you from going back to the pool store.

    take some extra time to really look over the functions on the calculator and start at the bottom where it asks
    Suggested Goal Levels, choose TFP, Bleach, and (I assume)vinyl
    then go back to the top and enter your gallons, above that is says now and target, now is your numbers column and target is what using TFP suggests for levels. enter your numbers in the now column and hit calculate at the top. on the right it will give resolutions to your problems.
    my calculations say you need bleach for FC and BORAX for ph and areate for your TA.
    Start with the FC then come back

    JB
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    The crucial thing to understand about my Pool Calculator is that it has no idea what you "should" be doing, it only tells you how to do something you already know you need to do. Another way to put that is that you need to enter the correct values in the Target column, or the amounts of chemicals it tells you to add won't be correct.

    Your CYA level is quite low, which means you will have trouble maintaing an FC level during the day. You should raise the FC level a little extra high in the evening to be completely sure the algae is gone until you can get the CYA level raised. However, test strips can be way off measuring CYA. The TF100 should ship fairly quickly. I would hold off on actually adjusting the CYA till you confirm the CYA reading with the TF100.

    You will want to do some shopping. You are going to need some CYA/stabilizer/conditioner. You can only really get that at the pool store or the pool department of some big box stores. Get four pounds or more of the granular kind. You will also need some muriatic acid, hardware stores and home centers almost always have it. I would start with 2 gallons.

    If your TA reading is correct, you are going to need to lower your TA level. Read up about that here.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Hi there,

    The only two things you need right now are CYA and bleach/liquid chlorine.

    Please redo the TA test and wipe the dropper with a damp cloth between drops. Post result.

    Redo the FC & CC test and post that, too.

    You are using the TF100 kit, yes?

    Welcome to the forum
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

    ~ One should not use a sledge hammer to swat a mosquito. ~

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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Here is a link to the visual on the CYA test. Some of us have needed this to help us determine how to read the test:

    http://www.taylortechnologies.com/Chemi ... ntentID=44
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

    ~ One should not use a sledge hammer to swat a mosquito. ~

    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Another ??, will we ever be able to swim again? When will it be safe?
    I would swim in that pool in the next ten minutes. Is there something in the test results that makes you think it is not safe to swim?
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Yes, we were using the calculator wrong. At first we thought the amounts in the right hand corner defaulted. I entered the correct amount, I think ?.
    FC 3-7
    PH 7.5-7.8
    TA 70-90
    CH 50-300
    CYA 30-50
    Is this what you use for the correct amounts???

    Okay, so the Stabilizer (CYA) will have to be purchased at the Pool Store? This will be kinda strange because we know them pretty well and have always came in w/a water sample. They test water give us what "they" say we need and we're off. We have the sticks, do we no longer use them?

    Yes we have the TF-100 kit. My husband is the one who did the testing earlier today. When I get home from work I can "try" to re-test, if I can figure it out! I feel alittle better now knowing we're hopefully getting close to having control. You should see our garage, it's FULL of empty bleach bottles. We look like we're making something .

    When can we swim? All these numbers don't mean alot to me yet,but I'm trying!
    24ft. AG, 13,500 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Hayward Max Flow 1.5 hp
    "Trying BBB"

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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Quote Originally Posted by aimcahill
    Yes, we were using the calculator wrong. At first we thought the amounts in the right hand corner defaulted. I entered the correct amount, I think ?.
    FC 3-7
    PH 7.5-7.8
    TA 70-90
    CH 50-300
    CYA 30-50
    Is this what you use for the correct amounts???
    This is a GUIDE for Recommended Levels in Pool School. We are a lot more lenient w/the TA than stated.
    The numbers you add in the Pool Calculator "now" column, are your test #'s.


    Okay, so the Stabilizer (CYA) will have to be purchased at the Pool Store? This will be kinda strange because we know them pretty well and have always came in w/a water sample. They test water give us what "they" say we need and we're off. We have the sticks, do we no longer use them?
    You can find CYA at Lowes, HD, WallyWorld. It may say Stabilizer or Conditioner on the label but the ingredients are cyanuric acid.

    Yes we have the TF-100 kit. My husband is the one who did the testing earlier today. When I get home from work I can "try" to re-test, if I can figure it out! I feel alittle better now knowing we're hopefully getting close to having control. You should see our garage, it's FULL of empty bleach bottles. We look like we're making something .

    Yes, please re-do the FC/CC and the TA using the wiper between drops.

    When can we swim? All these numbers don't mean alot to me yet,but I'm trying!
    I suggest you add a small jug (96oz) bleach and circulate about 30 minutes and jump in! This evening, I suggest you raise the FC to 10.
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

    ~ One should not use a sledge hammer to swat a mosquito. ~

    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    You guys are awesome! Thanks ModSquad...that's exactly what I need specific directions! So FC 10, will that be after 96 oz. is added or do you mean add more Bleach aftering swimming?

    CYA, is this what you put in a sock in the skimmer? Sorry, I know I'm exhausting!

    Oh yeah, don't laugh...but I've got one more ?. Can our Solar Cover be put back on even while adding bleach, CYA?
    24ft. AG, 13,500 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Hayward Max Flow 1.5 hp
    "Trying BBB"

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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Quote Originally Posted by aimcahill
    You guys are awesome! Thanks ModSquad...that's exactly what I need specific directions! So FC 10, will that be after 96 oz. is added or do you mean add more Bleach aftering swimming?
    Yes, add the small jug now, circulate for 30 mins. and start swimming. This evening, after the sun is off the pool, retest and add enough bleach to raise FC to about 10.

    CYA, is this what you put in a sock in the skimmer? Sorry, I know I'm exhausting!
    Yep. You may want to hang it in front of a return or place it in the skimmer basket being careful not to block the water flow.

    Oh yeah, don't laugh...but I've got one more ?. Can our Solar Cover be put back on even while adding bleach, CYA?
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

    ~ One should not use a sledge hammer to swat a mosquito. ~

    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Yes, you can put the cover back on after adding bleach. I leave mine on all the time. Some people say not to when the pool is a shock level, but I do.

    Let us know about that TA test. I have a feeling wiping the dropper tip will bring a different result.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Okay, I'm home now! Been to Wally World and bought 2 182 oz. of bleach and Stabilizer (I lucked up last one on the shelf). Do I wait to add everything now? Test first?

    FYI I found more info from morning test my hubby did, CC .5. I don't think that will help anything right now, but wanted to post.

    The CYA, what's the best way to measure this stuff? According to Pool Calculator I need 31 oz. by volume. Is this something that will always have to be in the pool or is this just because I'm low right now? I was just thinking the "sock" look isn't real attractive.
    24ft. AG, 13,500 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Hayward Max Flow 1.5 hp
    "Trying BBB"

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    The sock is temporary. If its a 4 lb container, put half in a sock and tie it off by the return. It will disolve in a couple of days. Leave the pump running until it does. After you do that, you can go ahead and add the bleach. Pour it slowly into the return flow of water so you don't splash.
    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
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    pepsiholic's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Hello

    I put my cya in a knee-hi and tossed it in the skimmer basket, I have read where some tie theres in a sock in front of the return. The choice is basically yours. I just used a 16 ounce glass measuring cup that had all the markings already there, doesn't matter if you undershoot a little you can always add more. I'm still waiting on my final reading and I've added it 3 times alreay, it will take 5-7 days for you to get reliable reading.
    24 x 52 Round AG Outback Empire Pool 13,500 gal.
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Okay, everything is in the pool. Do I test again tonight or wait until tomorrow? I put the solar cover back on because of a bad T-Storm. I hope that's okay.

    I probably should have gotten more bleach because I have no idea how much I'll have to add tomorrow. It seems everyday for the past 4 days we've added 2-4 a day. When will it stop, soon???
    24ft. AG, 13,500 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Hayward Max Flow 1.5 hp
    "Trying BBB"

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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Oky, you got some bleach and some CYA! FPM & Pepsi gave instructions for the CYA.

    Quote Originally Posted by aimcahill
    FYI I found more info from morning test my hubby did, CC .5. I don't think that will help anything right now, but wanted to post.
    That is good info! Since your CC was 0.5 and your water is clear, the you have one test to determine if you are done shocking and that is the overnight test!
    If you can do the overnight test tonight, we can get that out of the way (possibly) and start on something else Here's the overnight test.....can you do it tonight?
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

    ~ One should not use a sledge hammer to swat a mosquito. ~

    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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    Pisces's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Keep going..you can do it! I've tried both CYA methods...in a panty-hose leg in the skimmer and in a sock in front of a very active return. I had trouble getting it to dissolve very well in my skimmer, but that was before I got my returns circulating well. Now I have my "tube sock-kitchen twine-brick" set-up that I keep when I need to add CYA. It'll sit on the side of the pool and I can adjust it easily to let it float freely in the water stream of the return. It only takes about 24 hours for most of it to dissolve, then I squeeze out what little remains in the bottom. Keep your pump going until it dissolves.
    7,000 gal. IG gunite, SWG, PebbleSheen interior finish-Aqua Blue, 8' vanishing edge raised 16-jet overspill spa, 2 12" waterfalls, tan shelf with bubbler.
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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Quote Originally Posted by aimcahill
    Okay, everything is in the pool. Do I test again tonight or wait until tomorrow? I put the solar cover back on because of a bad T-Storm. I hope that's okay.

    I probably should have gotten more bleach because I have no idea how much I'll have to add tomorrow. It seems everyday for the past 4 days we've added 2-4 a day. When will it stop, soon???
    Howdy neighbor! Once you get your CYA up a bit, your chlorine usage should go down, but you will have to add a bit of chlorine every night.

    Keep the faith. Once you get your water balanced you'll be surprised how easy it is to maintain.
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
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  20. Back To Top    #20

    Re: Help!! About to give up after first test!

    Quote Originally Posted by Butterfly
    Oky, you got some bleach and some CYA! FPM & Pepsi gave instructions for the CYA.

    Quote Originally Posted by aimcahill
    FYI I found more info from morning test my hubby did, CC .5. I don't think that will help anything right now, but wanted to post.
    That is good info! Since your CC was 0.5 and your water is clear, the you have one test to determine if you are done shocking and that is the overnight test!
    If you can do the overnight test tonight, we can get that out of the way (possibly) and start on something else Here's the overnight test.....can you do it tonight?
    But we just put the CYA in tonight? Does it not need to dissolve first?
    24ft. AG, 13,500 Gallons
    Sand Filter
    Hayward Max Flow 1.5 hp
    "Trying BBB"

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