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Thread: New to TFP! Metal issues

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    New to TFP! Metal issues

    Hi All! We have a 15,000 gal vinyl pool. Converting to SWG now (previously used chlorine tabs). Ordering a Taylor K test kit this morning (per everyone's recommendation on here!). Pool is 6 years old. 1st 3 years we had no problems. Middle of 4th season we started having staining on steps & skimmer. Treated with Metal Out, cleaned with Ascorbic Acid. Struggled all season last year with the same problem. Spent $$$ at local dealer. We thought it was copper. Bought a stain ID kit and it is actually Iron. Our water has NEVER tested positive for copper or iron. Everyone is baffled. I lower the chlorine, clean the stain, use metal sequestrant, used Sparkle Up (which puts my filter psi over 30 in about 2 hours). Everything looks good. As soon as I bring my chlorine back up, stains present again.
    We top off with well water (which I had tested as well...no iron present). No metal pipes, ladder, etc any where in or near pool.
    Took our cover off a couple of weeks ago. Pool is green, but steps are white. I put a chlorine pucmk on the steps and they are now brown. Water tested yesterday shows NO METALS . Please help! I'm ready to drain it and start all over.
    Hayward 24" sand filter. Replaced sand mid-season last summer.

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    Mod Squad Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Hello and welcome to TFP! Your situation should bring quite a few replies and an interesting discussion. Many of your observations seem to point towards iron, but it's best to reserve any advice until you receive your proper test kit. Even with all the work you did before, not having the right kit with accurate results may have thrown-off what might have been better progress. Very hard to know at this point. When you get your K-2006 test kit, please post a full set of numbers and we'll help you analyze what to do next. I can say this though, if your CYA is not too high, tackling the algae will be priority #1 (SLAM link below). Algae has to be eliminated before re-addressing the staining, so that will be our focus. We look forward to your test results, and are happy to have you with us on the forum.
    Pool School - Metals in the Water and Metal Stains
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    First you need the test kit to see how much CL you have and if you have any CC's which may indicate algae. Is it clear green or cloudy green? If it is clear green, it may be this-. I let my CL get too low over the winter and then had to SLAM my pool. I could see the water turn green before my eyes. The injection of chlorine into water with iron in it causes the iron to become a filterable particle. So, you have basically made the iron somewhat visible (likely not to the naked eye). Well, the color of that iron particle is slightly yellow, and what do yellow and your blue pool water make? GREEN! Once your filter gets hold of those iron particles the green will dissipate in a couple of days.

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Ok...waiting on my test kit. I did have my water tested at local pool store Monday.
    pH 7.7 TA 163 Total Hardness 105
    FC 0 Total Chlorine 1.5 CYA 5 Copper 0 Iron 0
    No salt yet, waiting to get everything balanced 1st. They had me treat for staining & metals 1st (before algae). I also added 16 oz Muriatic Acid, 4 lbs stabilizer, 96 oz bleach. I have not retested since adding the products. Maybe I can run to the pool store tomorrow or should I wait for my kit? I will follow YOUR advice from now on!
    BTW, pool water is a cloudy blue-green color.

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Cloudy green sounds like algae. I would wait on your test kit to come in and in the meantime read all the SLAM and Poolschool links in Texas Splash's signature. I would perform the SLAM using liquid chlorine (bleach) instead of your SWG.

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Yeah, the pool store testing and advise definitely did not do you any favors. Treating stains before algae is just one example. Blue-green water is interesting. At some point we may have you post a pic as well. But for now, we'll wait on the K-2006 test results. No need to return to the pool store. Save your supplies as well. Any bleach, acid, etc, will be used shortly. Something else to keep in mind, as notorious as the pool store is for getting regular testing wrong, they can also be incorrect on the metals tests as well. We've seen such inconsistent results that in many cases we simply base advise solely on the changes and color of the water itself. The pool store can say "no metals", but the chemical changes don't lie. So we'll start fresh with you with the K-2006 and do all we can to get you fixed-up.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Got my test kit today. Here are tonights readings:
    FC=10 CC=3 TC=13 TA=260 pH=8.2 CYA=35 CH=175

    I had dumped several gallons of bleach in prior to my initial post to try to eliminate the algae. Pool is very cloudy. I can not see the bottom of the shallow end. It previously was a blue-green cloudy color. Now it's just white-cloudy. I backwashed the filter this morning. I have a skimmer sock on the basket and rinse that 2 or 3 times a day because it's covered in algae. What's my 1st step? I know the TA & pH need to come down. Should I tackle that 1st?
    16k gal, IG vinyl, Hayward 24" sand filter, Hayward SWG, Dolphin Cleaning Robot, TF-100 w/SpeedStir

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    It previously was a blue-green cloudy color. Now it's just white-cloudy.
    That's a fairly good sign. So, here's what you should do:
    1 - Let the FC stay just under 9 for a moment to verify your pH. You want the pH adjusted to about 7.2 "before" taking FC higher for the SLAM.
    2 - Your CYA is 35, so we'll say "40"; that means after the pH is lowered, increase FC to "16".
    3 - Test as often as required to try and maintain that FC level of 16 until you pass the 3 SLAM criteria.

    During the SLAM, sweep, brush, and backwash as needed. Inspect any area that is under water that could hold algae. From there, let the bleach do its job. You can turn-off or dial-down your SWG to give it a break.

    We'll address the elevated TA after the SLAM. Good luck!
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Good...glad I'm headed in the right direction. Should I wait until FC is 9, then lower the pH by adding muriatic acid?
    16k gal, IG vinyl, Hayward 24" sand filter, Hayward SWG, Dolphin Cleaning Robot, TF-100 w/SpeedStir

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Yes. If you try to test the pH while the FC is over 10 it reads falsely higher than normal. So best to let it fall to about 8-9, verify pH, then crank-up that FC and SLAM. Good luck, and have a nice weekend.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Hi Pat! Quick question....can you explain why the pH needs to be lower (7.2-7.4) when I SLAM? The chemistry geek in me is curious...General Chem in college was way too long ago! Thanks!
    16k gal, IG vinyl, Hayward 24" sand filter, Hayward SWG, Dolphin Cleaning Robot, TF-100 w/SpeedStir

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    When we increase the FC level, it tends to pull pH up with it temporarily. Once the FC drops back down under about 10, the pH tends to react and test normally. You can read an interesting discuss on this thread: Accurate pH test during shock levels with R-007?.

    Have a nice day.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    + it also makes the chlorine more effective at sanitization when ph is lower.
    In ground vinyl Grecian, 24k gal, Hayward 220t sand filter, VGreen VSP 165, Hayward SWG, Raypak NG 265k heater, dolphin m4.
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    Helpful Links:
    GET A TEST KIT Chlorine/CYA Chart How to SLAM About Metals & Stains

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Tonights readings:
    pH 7.4
    FC 10
    CC 0.5
    TA 150
    CH 175
    CYA 50
    I was planning on starting to SLAM tomorrow...but my CC is 0.5. Do I need to ? Pool is still cloudy.
    16k gal, IG vinyl, Hayward 24" sand filter, Hayward SWG, Dolphin Cleaning Robot, TF-100 w/SpeedStir

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    Mod Squad Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    I suspect you will still need to SLAM simply because the water was green just 5 days ago and it's still cloudy. If you're curious about your FC loss (to see if it's excessive), you can do an overnight (OCLT) this evening and post your results tomorrow. Otherwise, if you start the SLAM tomorrow with a CYA of 50, your SLAM FC level would be "20".
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    Low ccs don't necessarily mean there's no nascent algae afoot...but its also possible to create cloudiness when using a metal sequestrant, which can take up to 3 days of constant filtering to clear.

    Might not hurt to perform an Overnight Chlorine Loss Test, post a pic of pool water, and tell us what sequestrant you used. Does your chlorine drop fast?

    Eg what brand of Metal Out (several are named same) and is it diphosphonic acid? We usually recommend Jacks Magic and Metal Magic, both of which in the right dose sequester iron.

    Metal Out may be causing iron not to read...if you do have iron, it s a pita to read, and with evidence of staining and AA lifting, I'd be reluctant to believe any test that said zero. The zero ay just mean that something is interfering with a read.

    By the same token, "cloudy green" most often means algae, so consider all options. If you slam to be sure and get a baseline, be prepared to replenish with the correct type of sequestrant to fend off a possible resultant staining.
    In ground vinyl Grecian, 24k gal, Hayward 220t sand filter, VGreen VSP 165, Hayward SWG, Raypak NG 265k heater, dolphin m4.
    If TFP has helped you, please click to SUPPORT TFP!
    Helpful Links:
    GET A TEST KIT Chlorine/CYA Chart How to SLAM About Metals & Stains

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    You guys are absolutely right! FC this am is 2 and CC is 0!
    @Swampwoman: I have not used a Metal Sequestrant for over a week. At that time it was Pool Magnet Plus. I have a bottle of Jacks Purple I bought, but the "pool store" said use this Also I had updated my post to say pool had changed to a cloudy-white instead of the green. Could it be the sequestrant that's causing my water to stay cloudy? I've been filtering 24/7 for 10 days now. Or high TA? Also...took 6 days for chlorine to drop, so I would say NO, it doesn't drop fast
    16k gal, IG vinyl, Hayward 24" sand filter, Hayward SWG, Dolphin Cleaning Robot, TF-100 w/SpeedStir

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    pool1.jpg

    - - - Updated - - -

    The bottom step is my iron staining. It was clean (other than algae) when I took the cover off. It is removed with Ascorbic Acid
    16k gal, IG vinyl, Hayward 24" sand filter, Hayward SWG, Dolphin Cleaning Robot, TF-100 w/SpeedStir

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    SLAM'd today. Added a total of 6 gallons of bleach. 2 at a time and tested in between. Just checked my levels (last bleach was 4 hours ago). My FC=4 and CC=16 ! TC=20, which was my goal. IS my CC reading right??? I never expected the CC to be that high. I expected FC to be higher. I will test early tomorrow morning and see what my OCLT is. I work 12 hour days the next several days so I won't be able to check it as frequently during the day.
    16k gal, IG vinyl, Hayward 24" sand filter, Hayward SWG, Dolphin Cleaning Robot, TF-100 w/SpeedStir

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    Re: New to TFP! Metal issues

    It's very possible that the elevated CCs are from the chlorine trying to oxidize all the other chemicals in the water. It will just need to go its course until everything is oxidized so the bleach (FC level) can begin to hold. Frequent testing, especially in the early stages, and re-applying bleach to maintain the required FC SLAM level will be required. We've seen situations where the owner had to add bleach then re-test about every 10-15 minutes before the FC & CC would flip over and start to work the right way. That's how aggressive the chemical situation and oxidation was. With your work schedule that could pose a problem. I suppose now is the time to pick & chose when is the best time for you to do battle.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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