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Thread: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

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    I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    A little bit of background info. I bought a house with a green pool, drained it, cleaned it, then filled it. Everything was going fine until I let the FC slip a little low for a day or two. Since then every time i brush the pool there is a brown 'dust' that gets stirred up by the broom. I'm assuming this is the dying algae. I've never had much CC but I decided to shock the pool to completely knock out the algae.

    FC 18
    TC 18
    pH 7.5
    TA 140
    CH 260
    CYA 40-50
    Temp 90 <-- Gross

    The water looks clear and even with the pump running 24/7, there is always that dust on the bottom. Every morning I wake up and cross my fingers that the overnight FC loss is less than one but it seems to be a constant 3-5 PPM loss. Should I keep going or change my plan of attack?
    ~10K Gallon, IG, Pebble, Sand Filter, Variable speed pump, Spa, Pop up cleaners

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    reebok's Avatar
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    sounds exactly like the yellow algae I had. you need a higher shock level per the chart or pool calculator.
    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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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    What target are you using for your Shock level? I'd go 20-25 if you are getting that much of an overnight drop.

    Are you testing 30 minutes AFTER your last bleach addition to ensure you reached your target? Are you testing in the a.m. before the sun hits the pool?
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    My shock target has been 18.

    Yes I have been doing a test in the evening after shade covers the pool, adding chlorine to get to 18, then checking an hour or two later to make sure its at 18 before I go to bed. Then I wake up before the sun is directly on the pool to check in the morning and its usually 12-14.

    Is there a way to confirm that it is yellow/mustard algae?
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    It really doesn't matter if it is or not, chlorine WILL kill it. YOu need to shock higher, no less than 20. Assume for now your CYA is 50 and shock to 20. If you go a little higher that's okay to.

    Make sure you are brushing all areas of the pool, esp those areas with poor circulation, behind ladders, light niches, etc.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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    reebok's Avatar
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    I had what I thought was dirt on the bottom of my pool. I would sweep it or vacuum it and it would be back the next day. it was yellowish and wouldn't affect water clarity unless you stirred it up. I wondered out loud about it and my dad told me it was yellow algae, which I didn't doubt given my lackadaisical pool care method which involved not doing much of anything. I had many algae outbreaks, but only had yellow once or twice. when I used the pool store chemicals (stop yellow and chlorine) as directed, it went away. thanks to TFP, I now know it will never be back :)
    so between your description and overnight fc loss indicating organics, I would say it is. there is some test where you put algae in a jar but I can't find where I read it anymore. I'll keep looking.
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    Ok, I'm pretty well convinced that it is yellow algae, I will start shocking to 20 and continue with the brushing. Another thing that I just thought of last night was that I have an automatic filler that rarely to never gets any pool water going into it (it pretty much fills with tap water and flows into the pool). So maybe this is a breeding ground for algae? I just dumped some 10% chlorine in there last night and today it looks like there is a bunch of white cloudy gunk floating in there.
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    If the dust on the bottom were mustard algae, it would dissappear at shock level, and then return as the level dropped down to normal. IF the substance is still there at shock levels, it isn't mustard algae, it's dirt/pollen/dust/dead algae.

    These are pics of mustard algae:
    http://images.google.com/imgres?imgu...%3D2%26hl%3Den
    http://images.google.com/imgres?imgu...%3D2%26hl%3Den
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/post70318.html#p70318

    If you do a google search (bottom left) for the words "mustard algae" you will see there have been several threads of people who think they have mustard algae, but they don't...

    Regardless, proper FC levels will kill it, and prevent it from returning.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    Are your chlorine levels holding? If they hold then that dust is just that...dust. I have it every day...My chlorine levels hold just fine. You'd be suprised at how much dust the surface of you pool collects. It is like a big lint trap. Have you ever looked at your pool when the pump is not running...If you get down close to the surface, you can see it all floating there. It has to go somewhere....down is logical...skimmer wont get it all. Try using a skimmer sock to trap as much of it as you can. My guess is that it is not yellow or mustard algae.
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    the op states he's having 3-5ppm overnight loss and he let fc get to 0. my fc went to 0 for a day or two (or three) and I got black algae from that, but nothing else. thanks to this site I finally killed it after months of trying by rubbing a puck on it for several days.
    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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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    I shocked to 20 last night and it was about 15-16 this morning. So I added another gallon of 10% which is right around 8ppm for my pool. The dust did appear to be mostly gone after a night at 20. So I gave it a really good brushing today. Hopefully the brushing and 24 FC will knock this out.

    I did read on another thread that to get rid of the yellow algae you have to go above the yellow algae shock level on pool calculator. Something about the yellow shock level only makes it fade away and it will come back as soon as the chlorine drops. Anybody have experience with this? Thanks again for everyone's help.
    ~10K Gallon, IG, Pebble, Sand Filter, Variable speed pump, Spa, Pop up cleaners

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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    If you have mustard algae, also called yellow algae, it will vanish at normal shock level, only to return when you are all done shocking and back to normal FC levels. To kill mustard algae permanently, you need to shock to high shock level, sometimes referred to as mustard algae shock level, You also need to brush absolutely everything while at high shock level. All pool toys must either be wiped down with a dilute bleach solution or soaked in the pool at high shock level and all bathing suits and towels should be washed.

    Many people think they have mustard algae, when they don't actually have it. Both pollen and regular algae can behave like mustard algae in some situations.
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    OK, I've ran out of POP. 22FC dropped to 15 this morning. Put in another gallon for an 8ppm boost. Checked it this evening, down to 10. Now that the sun is off the pool i just dumped 3 gallons in so hopefully 34FC will kill every darn thing overnight. I'm tired of not being able to swim in my pool when its 110 outside.
    ~10K Gallon, IG, Pebble, Sand Filter, Variable speed pump, Spa, Pop up cleaners

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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    Not that it is likely, but now might be a good time to review your test technique, to make sure you are doing the chlorine test correctly.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    I've been testing chlorine the same way since i got my test kit. I don't have the best kit but the one under it so i dilute 1.8ml with the rest tap water to 9ml. 5 drops r-0001, 5 drops r-0002 (i think those are the numbers, just remembering off the top of my head) level has been around 16-20 for over a week and the dust comes and goes some days. I'm totally lost on what to do.
    ~10K Gallon, IG, Pebble, Sand Filter, Variable speed pump, Spa, Pop up cleaners

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    Have you verified that your tap water is chlorine free? Do a chlorine test on straight tap water.

    You can't use water with chlorine in it when doing dilutions for a chlorine test.
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    Just tested the tap water, 0 FC 0 TC. I'm open to suggestions. I also have begun stockpiling some borax, I hear that helps a bit with algae problems.
    ~10K Gallon, IG, Pebble, Sand Filter, Variable speed pump, Spa, Pop up cleaners

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    Look around your pool and try to figure out if there is anywhere the algae could be growing that has bad circulation and which you haven't been brushing. Some possibilities include the bottom of ladder steps, inside light niches, etc. If algae has somewhere to hide out, it can be very difficult to get rid of.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    Would it be worth while to look into some of those algaecides? I know most people here are pretty set on the BBB, but I think I need some help.

    As for the brushing, I have been getting all the walls and floors daily, sometimes twice. The light fixture is pretty smooth, not a lot of cracks for algae to hide. There is a vacuum port for a cleaner but I to get that with the brush too.

    Update: Here are some pictures of the 'dust'. I tried a trichlor tab to see if it was actually a stain, when i scrubbed with the puck it just swirled up some dust and didn't really clean the surface, basically the same thing that happens when i brush it.


    ~10K Gallon, IG, Pebble, Sand Filter, Variable speed pump, Spa, Pop up cleaners

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    Re: I've been shocking for almost a week, is this normal?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    Look around your pool and try to figure out if there is anywhere the algae could be growing that has bad circulation and which you haven't been brushing. Some possibilities include the bottom of ladder steps, inside light niches, etc. If algae has somewhere to hide out, it can be very difficult to get rid of.
    Boy, that is the truth. I helped clear up a few pools this year that had a few places that were overlooked. The little places where you can tie a rope to each side. A couple of places where there were stub outs put for some unknown reason - about 4 ft of pipe that went from inside the pool under the deck and ended just the other side of the deck. The therapy jets in a love seat. And, here is the weirdest one - the floating thermometer - When I took a look at it, there was algae inside the thing. The thermometer got tossed in the garbage. The therapy jets were turned on to see a horrifying amount of green clumps come shooting out. The little rope niches and the stub outs were flushed out with a high pressure nozzle on the garden hose - tons of green crud came flying out of the stub outs.

    Each pool became stable with chlorine once we found the hidden culprits. One didn't stay stable too long and we ended up using seaklear phosphate remover and then it has been a breeze ever since. In all cases, each of the pool owners were delighted with the results.
    Buggs

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