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Thread: Shock and pH Lower....

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    Shock and pH Lower....

    Okay, so my hubby just took a sample of our water to the pool store and they gave him shock and pH lower. I told him before he went not to accept them telling him anything about phosphates, as I read here that they are pretty much useless. Here are the results of the test:

    Total alkalinity: over
    Ph: 8.0
    Calcium hardness: 192
    Free chlorine or Total chlorine: 0.64
    Cyanuric acid: 58

    How bad does that look? The water has been irritating the kids' eyes and it's not as sparkly as it was last week. I'm freaking out because I don't want it to be a troubled pool!

    Help!
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Use the PH lowering stuff to get the PH down to 7.4. What does the TA result mean? That's not clear.

    What kind of shock?

    You need your own test kit, so you don't have to rely on the pool store for testing.

    How are you chlorinating the pool? Your CYA level is high but manageable- keep your FC according to the CYA chart. First you need to shock the pool and perform an Overnight FC loss test, that's why you need your own kit.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    Use the PH lowering stuff to get the PH down to 7.4. What does the TA result mean? That's not clear.

    What kind of shock?

    You need your own test kit, so you don't have to rely on the pool store for testing.

    How are you chlorinating the pool? Your CYA level is high but manageable- keep your FC according to the CYA chart. First you need to shock the pool and perform an Overnight FC loss test, that's why you need your own kit.
    I'm going to have to go to Walmart or something and get a small test kit there to start off with today then.

    The TA result of "over" is what the pool store gave us. I suppose it was too high for them to test. The kind of shock is Super Shock--1 lb. We have 6 lbs. of pH lower (sodium bisulfate).

    We're chlorinating with Enjoy.
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    What is the active ingredient on the Super Shock.

    What is Enjoy?

    (I'm not entirely up on the latest pool store chems, I've been using bleach for 3 summers now.)
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Okay, found a few remote references to Enjoy.

    This is apparently a copper-sulfate based product.

    YOU DON'T want copper in your pool! Can I assume this was one of the 'freebies' the pool stealer gave you? How nice of them....

    Stop using this product and switch to bleach.

    After you lower the PH, you will begin the shock process.

    Refer to the CYA chart for your chlorine levels. Read How to Shock your Pool in Pool School.

    After you get the 6-way kit, post the PH/TA results.

    Hope this helps.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Copper sulfate?! Argh... I've wanted to switch to BBB, but I'm afraid it would make my warranty ineffective.

    I don't want to get discouraged! I don't know where to begin with the BBB method. I have no idea what I'm doing anyway! Okay... now I'm becoming frustrated. I'll post the test results when I get them later.

    Thank you for your help thus far!
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    You need to lower your pH. High pH reduces the effectiveness of chlorine. The pH of tears in the eye is close to 7.6. The water could be irritating their eyes due to high pH, bacteria, algae, and chloramines in the water. You get rid of bacteria, algae, and chloramines by increasing the chlorine level with bleach.

    One thing to be aware of is the false sense of security you get from computer printouts of pool store water tests. CYA test result of 58 implies a test result of test accuracy of + or – one. Don't believe it!

    One rule to follow. Never put anything in your pool that you do not know what it is. If Enjoy is copper sulfate you could cause metal staining when you shock the pool. Purchase products by their chemical name. You will save money by purchasing baking soda rather than alkalinity increaser and will be able to price compare all pool chemicals.

    I do not know what warranty you are concern about violating. You should know that the chemicals in the BBB method are all sold in pool stores at much higher prices. Many pool stores sell liquid chlorine. Pool stores sell baking soda as alkalinity increaser. Pool stores sell borax [Sodium tetraborate pentahydrate] as a pool additive under such names as Proteam's Supreme, Bioguard's Optimizer Plus, Poollife Endure, Guardex Maximizer, and others.

    Frustration is good. You will learn to do your own testing with a good test kit. You will learn how to care for your pool and will not fall for the unnecessary expensive chemicals sold by pool stores. You will have crystal clear water that is bacteria free and does not irritate you children's eyes.
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Thank you again guys! Okay, I have the 6-way test, just tested it and this is what I got (shocked about 3 hours ago):

    pH: 7.8
    TA: 310 ppm ( )
    Chlorine: 5

    Our CYA is 41 and I was looking at the chart from the link in your siggie, frustratedpoolmom, and it looks like the CYA and the amount of chlorine in the pool are okay. This morning, before shock and before the actual test kit, the test STRIPS showed really low chlorine.

    The water is now cloudy, but not so much I can't see the bottom of the pool. Is that normal after shocking? The shock was cloudy.

    Oh yeah... we went and bough muriatic acid at Lowe's if you guys advice us that we need to use it! Newbies are rotten, aren't we?!
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Quote Originally Posted by saxxlane
    Thank you again guys! Okay, I have the 6-way test, just tested it and this is what I got (shocked about 3 hours ago):

    pH: 7.8
    TA: 310 ppm ( )
    Chlorine: 5

    Our CYA is 41 and I was looking at the chart from the link in your siggie, frustratedpoolmom, and it looks like the CYA and the amount of chlorine in the pool are okay. This morning, before shock and before the actual test kit, the test STRIPS showed really low chlorine.

    The water is now cloudy, but not so much I can't see the bottom of the pool. Is that normal after shocking? The shock was cloudy.

    Oh yeah... we went and bough muriatic acid at Lowe's if you guys advice us that we need to use it! Newbies are rotten, aren't we?!
    What did you use to shock? This is important

    Read How to Lower TA. You have two choices, follow the steps in the article to speed up the process....OR....every time the PH creeps up to 7.8 you will lower the PH down to 7.2 with acid. The acid additions will slowly drop the TA over time, and the TA will eventually reach the recommended range and the PH will stabilize. It sounds like you have high TA in the tap water? Can you test your tap water TA? Because if you have high TA in the tap, every time you "top off" the pool your TA will increase.

    Basically the only problem with high TA is the ph drift. As long as you are diligent in monitoring the PH with daily testing, and adjusting it when it does reach 7.8, it shouldn't be a problem. High PH can be irritating and also cause scale, especially when CH is high.

    Do the test strips show FC or total chlorine? Can you compare the results? Also, you can use a 50/50 dilution to test the chlorine up to 10. Make sure you use distilled or chlorine-free water to dilute the pool sample.

    If the water is still cloudy, it could be two things, the product you used to shock, combined with high PH... or you have algae trying to take hold and you need to shock the pool, raising the FC up to 16.
    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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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    Quote Originally Posted by saxxlane
    Thank you again guys! Okay, I have the 6-way test, just tested it and this is what I got (shocked about 3 hours ago):

    pH: 7.8
    TA: 310 ppm ( )
    Chlorine: 5

    Our CYA is 41 and I was looking at the chart from the link in your siggie, frustratedpoolmom, and it looks like the CYA and the amount of chlorine in the pool are okay. This morning, before shock and before the actual test kit, the test STRIPS showed really low chlorine.

    The water is now cloudy, but not so much I can't see the bottom of the pool. Is that normal after shocking? The shock was cloudy.

    Oh yeah... we went and bough muriatic acid at Lowe's if you guys advice us that we need to use it! Newbies are rotten, aren't we?!
    What did you use to shock? This is important

    Read How to Lower TA. You have two choices, follow the steps in the article to speed up the process....OR....every time the PH creeps up to 7.8 you will lower the PH down to 7.2 with acid. The acid additions will slowly drop the TA over time, and the TA will eventually reach the recommended range and the PH will stabilize. It sounds like you have high TA in the tap water? Can you test your tap water TA? Because if you have high TA in the tap, every time you "top off" the pool your TA will increase.

    Basically the only problem with high TA is the ph drift. As long as you are diligent in monitoring the PH with daily testing, and adjusting it when it does reach 7.8, it shouldn't be a problem. High PH can be irritating and also cause scale, especially when CH is high.

    Do the test strips show FC or total chlorine? Can you compare the results? Also, you can use a 50/50 dilution to test the chlorine up to 10. Make sure you use distilled or chlorine-free water to dilute the pool sample.

    If the water is still cloudy, it could be two things, the product you used to shock, combined with high PH... or you have algae trying to take hold and you need to shock the pool, raising the FC up to 16.

    We used that Super Shock to shock. It's sodium bisulfate. It's been hours and there is a very slight haze. I just tested the tap water as you suggested and the TA for our tap water is 50 ppm.

    The test strips that we used this morning before shock show FC.

    How would I know when it's not just the shock making the water cloudy? Do I do a preemptive strike with some bleach? (We bought gallons of it when we bought the test strip and the acid)
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    sodium bisulfate is dry acid, not "shock". Are you certain that was the ingredient?
    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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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    sodium bisulfate is dry acid, not "shock". Are you certain that was the ingredient?
    Sorry, I got them mixed up!

    The one we put in yesterday for the pH lower was sodium bisulfate. The shock we put in today was calcium hypochlorite (68%).
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Yes, use bleach, raise your shock level up to 16. Use the Pool Calculator to determine how much bleach that is. Then check the FC with the strips, and compare it to your OTO chlorine test, using dilution if you can, to compare what you are seeing - to see if it's CC's or FC if they are similar levels.

    Any idea how the TA got so high?

    The combination of cal-hypo and high ph probably contributed to the cloudiness. I still think you need to shock though, JIC.
    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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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Okay, so I just used the pool calculator and for my 7600 gallons of water, I'm to use 173 oz. of bleach to shock to 16. I AM reading that right, right? Do I also add the muriatic acid or should I do that at another time? I'm prepared to do an overnight FC Loss test, just to see if there might be anything brewing, just in case.

    I have no idea how the TA got that high. Can you tell I'm stumbling through all of this? It's embarassing, but I have no one else to ask about this stuff. Since I just went out again (feels like I keep checking--like the water is a newborn baby! LOL) the water has gotten clearer, but still concerned!

    I'm ready to shock once you tell me I'm not reading that wonderful pool calculator wrong. Thanks so much--can't tell you how helpful you've been!
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    No worries, glad to help.

    Yes, I would lower the pH down to 7.2. Do you have any more dry acid? Or Muratic Acid?

    I would do that first, then add the 173 oz of bleach - your calc was correct. Test the FC level often, up to hourly, maintaining the 16 up till bedtime and then check the levels in the morning.
    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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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Keep the filter running 24/7 till it clears.
    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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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Great! I'm all set then. We'll definitely run the filter overnight and test again in the morning. Our 6-way test only tells us the Chlorine (which goes only up to 5) and the Bromine (which goes to 10)... how am I to know if the chlorine actually reaches my desired shock level? Our paper strips have a reading up until 10 and if the color is darker than the last one, of course that means the results are higher than that maximum 10 reading they have on the strips.

    Okay, so let me make sure the rundown is correct and then I'll leave you alone LOL:

    1. Put in muriatic acid (we have the liquid).
    2. Pour in the bleach slowly in front of the return jets.
    3. Test hourly up till bedtime and again in the morning for FC, pH, and TA.
    4. Keep filter running.

    Is that all there is to it?

    ETA: Forgot to ask if I can pour the chemicals in one after the other? Don't wanna mess anything up. Thanks!
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Add the Muratic Acid, then wait 30 minutes before you add the bleach.

    Calculate the MA dose carefully! Wear gloves, protective eyewear and stay upwind. (strong fumes). You can pour it slowly into a bucket of pool water and then pour the bucket of pool water slowly into the return flow.

    Ignore references to Bromine (the kit tests for it, but you're using chlorine).

    You can dilute your sample 50/50 with chlorine free or distilled water, actually try a 3:1 ratio and multiply the result by 4. This will allow you to test up to 20, though it loses accuracy.

    In the morning if the chlorine is above 10, the PH may still be reading a "false-high" from the chlorine, so wait until the chlorine drops below 10 to retest PH.
    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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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    Add the Muratic Acid, then wait 30 minutes before you add the bleach.

    Calculate the MA dose carefully! Wear gloves, protective eyewear and stay upwind. (strong fumes). You can pour it slowly into a bucket of pool water and then pour the bucket of pool water slowly into the return flow.

    Ignore references to Bromine (the kit tests for it, but you're using chlorine).

    You can dilute your sample 50/50 with chlorine free or distilled water, actually try a 3:1 ratio and multiply the result by 4. This will allow you to test up to 20, though it loses accuracy.

    In the morning if the chlorine is above 10, the PH may still be reading a "false-high" from the chlorine, so wait until the chlorine drops below 10 to retest PH.

    Wonderful! I'm going to play chemistry right now. Thank you so very much--I woulda been completely lost without your help!
    18'x52" Round AGP, Vinyl liner
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Shock and pH Lower....

    You're welcome, good luck.
    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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