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Thread: I swear this thing will be the death of me!!

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    bwiley47's Avatar
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    I swear this thing will be the death of me!!

    Hello,
    New to this site, but I have been reading alot, especially in pool school. We installed our pool last year (it is 23 yrs old, we replaced all water walls and coping, new liner, same filter and pump, repaired deck), and filled with water hose. Didn't add any chemicals but shock and chlorine tabs. Didn't cover for winter, or winterize I have been working on this since the end of April, at which time it was full of leaves and looked like a green pond. Over the past few weeks I have been testing with the strips and adding chemicals to increase ta and calcium hardness. I have a vinyl liner if I forgot to mention. My water is blue/green cloudy and I added the skimmer sock today after learning about it here because it is also dirty.
    Today I had my water tested at the local pool store and my readings are:

    FC 1.09
    TC 1.26
    PH 7.68
    CH 90
    TA 108
    CYA 59
    They also listed copper as .57 and iron as .76.
    I think my PH and TA are ok if I continue to use the type of shock and tabs I have been using but I am seriously considering going to BBB since I now have visable algae!
    Should I lower my ph prior to shocking with chlorine??
    And did I read correctly in pool school that with a vinyl liner I need not worry about Calcium hardness?
    Do I need to worry about the copper and iron amounts? Thanks. This site is my last resort before I bulldose it to the ground!!
    16 x 32 AG Fanta Sea 13,500 gal/ Hayward Sand Filter/ 1 hp Hayward Power Flo LX Pump
    1 skimmer 1 main drain

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    Re: I swear this thing will be the death of me!!

    Welcome! you've been working hard, let's see if we can get you all straightened out. You should check out the Pool School, see the big button on the upper right of every page. I'll point you to a few specific things here, but go check it out.
    Quote Originally Posted by bwiley47
    Over the past few weeks I have been testing with the strips
    Well, get yourself a decent test kit, around here we like the Taylor K-2006 (relabeled by Leslie's as the FAS-DPD Service Kit) and the TF-100 from tftestkits.net; see this comparison article. You almost certainly can't find these in any store (people who go into a Leslie's often come out with the Total DPD kit instead, does not have everything you really need), so order online.

    Pool store tests aren't the best, as the training and experience of pool store employees shall we say varies widely. But it's what we have to go on for now.
    Quote Originally Posted by bwiley47
    I think my PH and TA are ok if I continue to use the type of shock and tabs I have been using but I am seriously considering going to BBB since I now have visable algae!
    Should I lower my ph prior to shocking with chlorine??
    Your pH is okay, your TA is not a real problem, your CYA is on the high side unless the pool gets a lot of direct sun. The real problem is that your FC is way too low.

    The tabs will be trichlor, which are adding to your CYA. The powder is probably calcium hypochlorite (cal-hypo) which will add to your CH; in your case that's okay because of the low CH. If it's cal-hypo you can stick with it for now, eventually you should start using liquid chlorine, or bleach (same stuff just different strength), instead of the tabs and powder. Stop using the tabs as soon as you can. Save them for vacations, it's about all they are good for.

    According to the Chlorine/CYA chart you want to keep FC at 5 or more, normally. But of course you now have algae (because the FC is too low), so you need to shock the pool, see Defeating Algae. "Shock" is a verb, not a noun; to shock the pool, you raise FC to (in your case) about 24. "OMG, how do I test for that??" well, with one of the cool test kits I mentioned above. And you keep it there until the problem is taken care of. If you dose it up way high once and let it come back down, instead of maintaining it, the algae will just start laughing at you. Can't have that, now.

    Quote Originally Posted by bwiley47
    And did I read correctly in pool school that with a vinyl liner I need not worry about Calcium hardness?
    You do not need to worry about a low CH, which is what you have.
    Quote Originally Posted by bwiley47
    Do I need to worry about the copper and iron amounts?
    That one will have to wait for somebody else to answer, although I suspect the answer is yes. A copper level that the pool store finds worth mentioning probably means you have also tried a copper-based algaecide, although there's a faint chance it's from the fill water. Around here we don't recommend algaecide except in a few special cases, which don't apply here.
    --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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    bwiley47's Avatar
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    Shocking. Do I add chlorine all at once?

    Merged threads for history. Butterfly


    ok. If the calculator says my shock level is 24 and says to add 7.6 gal of bleach, do I add this all at once and then retest
    how soon? Will the test at walmart show me an exact number until I get my tester in the mail?
    I need to get a hold on this algae.
    16 x 32 AG Fanta Sea 13,500 gal/ Hayward Sand Filter/ 1 hp Hayward Power Flo LX Pump
    1 skimmer 1 main drain

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    bwiley47's Avatar
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    Re: I swear this thing will be the death of me!!

    Thanks for the reply!! I am assuming that I then add the required amount (7.6 gal) according to the calculator all at once to "shock" and then retest and add to maintain that level until water is clear?

    Thanks again!
    16 x 32 AG Fanta Sea 13,500 gal/ Hayward Sand Filter/ 1 hp Hayward Power Flo LX Pump
    1 skimmer 1 main drain

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    Re: Shocking. Do I add chlorine all at once?

    With the pump running, pour the bleach slowly in front of a return so it will circulate throughout the pool. Pace it so it takes a minute or more to do each jug. When you do whole jugs, somebody suggested you can just lower the jug into the pool so it's easier to hang onto for all that time. Haven't tried that trick myself.

    Usually we say give it an hour to make sure it's all nicely circulated, then test to see where you actually got. When you say "the test at walmart" do you mean a cheap test kit from walmart, or is there a pool section where they will test for you? For the cheap test kit the answer is No. If it's a test they do, then I don't know. Although if you're going to pick up a cheap kit, get the one that has the yellow drops (OTO test) not the red drops (DPD test). The scale in either case only goes up to 5, but with the yellow drops you can teach yourself to recognize the orange/brown colors it gets from shock-level FC. Then you'll be able to tell when it's dropping, and know to add more bleach. You won't be able to figure out exact amounts but it's the best we can do until the "real" kit arrives.
    --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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    Re: I swear this thing will be the death of me!!

    You maintain the shock level until:
    1) you lose no more than 1ppm FC overnight (Overnight FC Test)
    2) your CC is 0.5 or less (you'll be able to measure this with the fancy kit)
    3) your water is clear
    --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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    bwiley47's Avatar
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    Re: Shocking. Do I add chlorine all at once?

    I read somewhere on this site that walmart has a 7 test kit that is fair, until i recieve the other one. I already have the oto and have been using it to compare to the test strips as a double check, but thanks for the advice on how to use it in this case.

    B. Wiley
    16 x 32 AG Fanta Sea 13,500 gal/ Hayward Sand Filter/ 1 hp Hayward Power Flo LX Pump
    1 skimmer 1 main drain

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    Re: Shocking. Do I add chlorine all at once?

    That 7-way kit, if it's the one I remember, does include a CYA test and so you could double check the pool store result with it. But, basically it's duplicating a lot of what's in the kit you already ordered.

    I believe that walmart kit uses the DPD (red) drops for the chlorine test. The advantage over the OTO test is that you can use it to read both FC and TC, and therefore derive CC (because FC + CC = TC); the OTO test measures only TC. The disadvantage compared to the OTO test is that the DPD test will bleach out at higher FC levels, reading incorrectly low. You could dilute the pool water sample 50-50 with chlorine-free water to double the range of the DPD test, and because you're not looking for high precision here maybe that would be okay. But I'd still go with the CL/PH kit as being enough for right now, it'll tide you over until the big kit comes.
    --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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    Re: I swear this thing will be the death of me!!

    Hi there,

    Paul's been giving you FAB advice. I just wanted to address your metals issue.

    Since you do have iron, you do want use a sequesterant product. Jack's Magic brands are good ones.

    Have you used any algaecide products that may be copper based? "Mineral" products or "ionizers"?
    Also the HTH brand tablets that Wal-mart and others sell for daily chlorination contain copper. So I wouldn't use them, even for vacations. Sequesterant also will help with the copper.

    Copper will turn blonde hair green. IT can also stain pool surfaces and the stains are permanent. There is a treatment out there for the green hair though.

    I would recommend you have the pool store test your tap water/fill water for metals. That way you know if over time, thru water replacement, the metal levels will slowly drop or not. Otherwise routine maintenance dosing of metal sequesterant is necessary (and this can be expensive...)

    Good luck, let us know when you get your kit.... Stay patient and diligent with your shocking process, don't get discouraged.
    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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