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Thread: New pool owner, needs some help.

  1. Back To Top    #1

    New pool owner, needs some help.

    Today is our two week mark for our above ground ring quick set pool. Its 10x30, manual shows approx gal cap is 900 "I have been basing treatment on 1000". Our Filter system is RP600 with pump type of F600C, GPH Flow 580.

    Our purchase was a very last minute decision so when we first bought and filled it we had no maintenance/cleaning products. We didn't place anything in the pool for the first time until approx 5 days later which was the Wed before last. We started with just putting in some regular household Chlorine Bleach. This seemed to be working as far as I could tell, we weren't having any major issues. A couple of days later "Friday before last" I started noticing the water was looking a little cloudy, not major but you could tell something was changing. I started reading online and like allot of new pool owners was totally overwhelmed.

    I purchased a package of the 6 way test strips from Walmart and then my co-worker gave me a bag of HTH Super Shock -n- Swim. She has a larger version of the same pool and said its the only thing that has worked for her so I gave it a try. After a couple of days the water cleared up but then this last Tue or Wed when my kids got in the pool they said the bottom of the pool was slippery. I also noticed a slippery feeling when I took off the pool cover and you can fill it when you touch the bottom of the pool ring. So, yesterday I bought some liquid algae stuff and placed it in the pool around 1 1/2hrs after I put in my Super Shock stuff "filter running entire time". this was at night after sun went down. Today I noticed there were patches of white residue/film floating on top of water, not allot but definately enough so that I noticed. Its weird because when I tried to use the skimmer on it of course it went right through but it didn't look like it broke up at all.

    Ok, so below are some of my testing numbers, hopefully this will help you be able to provide me with some advice. First let me say that I am not really sure on the FC/Bromine ppm what the two different numbers mean and are they somehow unrelated/read separately. Before I forget, is it better to read the test strips outside or inside?

    July 21st "day the kids complained of it being slippery and first day of Shock Treatment"

    Test #1 (evening after kids were done swimming)
    TH: 100
    FC: 0/0 - Once I dip the stick the color basically turns white. It doesn't look like the original color but its not the light tan of 1/2 reading.
    PH: 7.2
    TA: 120
    CYA: 0

    Test #2 (approx 1 hr after Shock Treatment, put in 2 1/2 tbs)
    TH: 100
    FC: 0/0-1/2 (color looked a tiny tiny bit different then normal but still totally unsure of how to clasify the color)
    PH: 7.8
    TA: 180
    CYA: 0

    Test #3 (couple of hours after treatment)
    TH: 100
    FC: 1/2-2/4, (had a very slight pink tint to it, still not sure I read it correctly)
    PH: 8.4
    TA: 120
    CYA: 30-50 (definately darker then in the past but not sure if it was technnically closer to the 30 or 50)

    #4 (around 11pm, kepts testing because I wasn't sure if I was really reading the stick corectly)
    TH: 100
    FC: 1/2 (?)
    PH: 7.2
    TA: 120
    CYA: 0

    July 22 at 8:20am
    TH: 100
    FC: 0/0 (looks white still)
    PH: 7.2
    TA: 120
    CYA: 0

    July 22 at 7pm, can't remember if I did shock before or after this reading
    TH: 100
    FC: 0/0 (looks white still)
    PH: 7.2
    TA: 180
    CYA: 0

    July 22 at 8pm
    TH: 100
    FC: 0/0 (looks white still)
    PH: 7.5
    TA: 180
    CYA: 0

    July 24 (yesterday, 7:44pm, put in 2 1/2 tbs of liquid algaecide)
    TH: 100
    FC: 0/0 - 1/2 (still doesn't look much like any of the colors on the chart)
    PH: 7.2-7.5 (very close, hard to tell)
    TA: 180
    CYA: 0

    July 25 (today, 2pm)
    TH: 100
    FC: 0/0 - (still doesn't look much like any of the colors on the chart)
    PH: 7.2
    TA: 120
    CYA: 0


    Ok, so you can see that my TH has remained at 100 and almost every time our CYA is at 0 and I'm at a loss about our FC. Only two that I feel somewhat comfortable with in terms of accuracy is the PH and TA.

    So, my question is, overall what do you think of my numbers and could they be ralated to the slimy feeling in the pool. Water is still looking pretty clear at this point.


    Sorry so long, just getting really frustrated at this point. My boys are 8 and 5 and my 5 yr old is not real good at keeping the water out of his mouth so I am concerned about anything harmful that could make him sick.

  2. Back To Top    #2

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    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    Chlorine is a consumable item and must be constantly replenished in your pool.

    If you do not constantly check and replenish it, you will have algae and your pool is subject to have lots of bacteria, etc. in it. That's what has happened to your pool.

    I would not swim in that pool until I cleaned it up. To fix it, you need to add lot's of chlorine.

    To start, you need to add 1 quart of clorox bleach to your pool tonight. Tomorrow AM, clean out any solid matter or junk that you can and add another quart. Tomorrow night, do the same thing. The pump should be running the entire time and you should be cleaning and brushing the sides as often as you can. The next morning, do the same thing and then post back here and tell us how the water looks and the sides and bottome of the pool feel. That should clear up most of the issue but report back and describe your conditions and we'll go from there.

    You may find it easier to dump the pool and start over. If water is inexpensive, that will work. Nevertheless, you will be right back to this condition unless you maintain chlorine in your pool of about 2-4ppm.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    pepsiholic's Avatar
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    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    You were right in using the liquid cholrine, but you have no cya (stabilizer) in your water to help hold it. So it is being consumed by the organics in your water and the sunlight. The 'slippery' feeling is more than likely an algae bloom starting. You need to shock and keep shocking until the algae is dead.

    You should use the pool caculator to figure out what amount of bleach is your shock level. Add the bleach and keep it at that level until it holds overnight.

    You really should get some cya in your water or all your efforts will be wasted because the sun will burn out ant chlorine you put in it. You can get cya or stabilizer at the pool store or wal-mart. Again use the pool calculater to figure out the amount you will need.

    Hope this helps.
    24 x 52 Round AG Outback Empire Pool 13,500 gal.
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    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    Ludwig,

    Pepsi is, of course, correct about the CYA but I hope you will focus on getting that pool cleaned up first.

    The doses of chlorine I suggested will hopefully clear your pool and then we'll get you to put in some CYA.

    I think it would be good if you stayed focused on simply cleaning up that pool for now.....it is not very safe to swim there.....but it will be soon.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    Welcome to TFP!

    Take a look at out Beginners Guide for Seasonal/Temporary Pools. That should have most of the information you need.

    If duraleigh's quart of bleach approach doesn't fix things up right away, I would dump the water and start over. That is probably going to be simpler than continuing to try and fix the problems you have right at the moment after the simple approach has failed.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    Thanks for your replies, here is the latest since I posted yesterday. I woked up this morning to find that about a quarter of our water had spilled out, still not sure what happened. We noticed the ring was a little deflated so my husband got it all pumped back up and checked for holes but didn't see or hear any type of leeks. So, added fresh water to get it back up to the fill line.

    I stepped in the pool to see what the bottom felt like and I didn't notice any slippery feeling that my kids notices earlier last week. I also ran my hand under the underside of the ring and didn't feel any noticeable "slippery" texture. So, I am wondering if the combination of the shock product and the liquid algae I did Friday night helped. The pool water appears to clear to me, might not be crystal clear like it does right after you fill it but it definately doesn't look cloudy.

    After we got the spilled water replenished we tested the water and below are the results we got "at least I'm pretty sure".

    TH: 100
    FC: 0/0 (again, the initial color on the stick starts out as a very pale yellow and once I dip the stick it turn more of a white color, it definately doesn't get darker)
    PH: Somewhere between 7.4 and 7.8 me and my husband had a hard time deciding, it was close.
    TA: Somewhere between 120-180 (again hard to tell exactly)
    CYA: 0

    We were at Walmart today and picked up a container of hth chlorinating sanitizer, we haven't used it yet. So, based on the condition of the pool and the results I posted above do I still need to do the chlorine thing recommended by "duraleigh". If so is the chlorinating sanitizer going to have the same affect as regular chlorine bleach. Should we just return what we bought and use just regular clorox bleach? Also, is your recomendation still to not have anyone swimming in the pool based on the results above and the fact that I didn't feel anything slippery.

    I am in WA State and we are suppose to be reaching close to 100 degrees over the next several days so as you can imagine the pool would come in really handy right now.

  7. Back To Top    #7

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    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    Beats me about the HTH chlorinating sanitizer. What are the ingredients?
    Buggs

    14,000 gallon, in ground, plaster, free form, play pool.
    Sta-Rite Max-E-Glass with a 1.5 hp Emerson motor
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    Blue Diamond robot for those after storm days when I can't wait overnight for the in floor to clean it.

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    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    Buggs, the ingrediants are.

    Calcium Hypochlorite 47.6%
    Other Ingrediants 52.4%
    Total: 100%
    Minimum Available Chlorine......45%

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    Basically, Yes, do what Duraleigh says. That is the short answer. You can trust him, he knows his stuff!

    I did a quick search of HTH chlorinating sanitizer and see that it is cal-hypo, 47.6%. Personally, although I like to keep some cal-hypo on hand, since it is stable and keeps a long time, I prefer to use bleach or (stronger) liquid chlorine for basic chlorination. But, bleach does degrade and is sort of a pain to store so you can't get a whole lot of it at once.

    So, what you got will get you some chlorine (which you really really need) just like bleach and is fine (unless your calcium is high already) but it does not have any stablizer (CYA) to protect the chlorine from the sun. So, you would expect all that chlorine to dissapear after a day of sunshine, more or less. Just as it would with only bleach. You need some CYA.

    When you need CYA, like now, just go buy some granular sort, HTH makes one called Stablizer & Conditioner, and there are many other brands as well. You might even find a more expensive liquid CYA at a pool store, same stuff, easier to use and more expensive. There are other products that have CYA, but sometimes it is just best to "roll your own" so you know what you have. Get the bleach, get the CYA, have the cal-hypo on hand for when you find yourself out of bleach.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

  10. Back To Top    #10

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    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    We were at Walmart today and picked up a container of hth chlorinating sanitizer, we haven't used it yet. So, based on the condition of the pool and the results I posted above do I still need to do the chlorine thing recommended by "duraleigh". If so is the chlorinating sanitizer going to have the same affect as regular chlorine bleach. Should we just return what we bought and use just regular clorox bleach? Also, is your recomendation still to not have anyone swimming in the pool based on the results above and the fact that I didn't feel anything slippery.
    Yes, return the HTH....use regular Clorox....it'll do exactly the same thing.

    At the risk of sounding completely overbearing, I'm gonna' repeat most of what I posted earlier. You need chlorine in your pool Clorox is chlorine. It sanitizes your pool and keeps bacteria, germs, etc. and algae out of your pool by killing them.

    Once you put chlorine in your pool it is consumed by the sun rather quickly and even more quickly if you have any bacteria, germs or algae present.........and your pool has apparently been without chlorine for days......making it a welcoming environment for those things.

    This AM put Clorox in your pool as soon as you wake up in the dosage I suggested. Test your chlorine around 11:00AM....it will likely be zero. If it is, put the same dose again of chlorine in your pool. If the water is clear and looks okay, you can go swimming.

    This evening, put another dose of chlorine in your pool. Tomorrow AM, test your chlorine and, if it is 0 again, put another dose of chlorine in your pool. You can swim then, too if the water looks good.

    You must replenish the chlorine in your pool on a daily basis. It is consumable....something you have to add daily.

    Now that we have that out of the way (sorry to be obnoxiously repetitive.....I felt I needed to make the point about what chlorine's purpose is in your pool, especially with little ones), we can get focused on a good way to keep the chlorine in your pool so you don't have to add it so frequently.

    Post back when you've got the chlorine in your pool and, when you go to the store to return the HTH, we'll suggest what to pick up to start making the chlorine stay in your pool a little longer.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  11. Back To Top    #11
    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: New pool owner, needs some help.

    Hi there, the article about temporary pools that Jason linked above, that tells you everything you need to know.

    If you listen to Duraleigh and use 1qt of Clorox as he instructed, your about-to-become-a-full-blown-algae-bloom situation will be taken care of. 1 small jug of clorox (or generic store brand) should take care of your issue easily.

    I don't think you should go the route of buying separate CYA because most cannisters are 3-4 lbs and you don't need nearly that much.

    All you need for your pool is one, 1 lb bag of Dichlor. You should easily be able to find it anywhere that has pool supplies (except probably Wal-mart, I haven't seen Dichlor at Wal-mart). Try Ace, Lowes/Home Depot or a pool store. A pool store will have it. Ask for Dichlor granular chlorine, one 1 lb bag is all you need.

    After you dose with the clorox as Dave instructed, for 10 days you will add 1 oz of Dichlor each evening. Predissolve it and pour it into the return flow. You won't need bleach on these days, the Dichlor should give you enough FC.

    At the end of the 10 days you will throw out the rest of the dichlor and start using bleach each day for chlorine. The Dichlor you added will give you a CYA level of 40.

    Look at the CYA chart. For a CYA of 40, your chlorine levels are 3, 5 and 16. 3 is your "min", 5 is your "target" and 16 is "shock level".

    Each night, to keep your FC above 3, you will add enough bleach to reach 5. That's equals a little more than 1/2 cup of bleach each night... probably similar to what you were doing at first, but because you didn't have CYA, the sunlight destroyed the chlorine and you developed problems.

    Following these steps should keep the pool clear.

    Give it a try, post back if you have any questions or problems.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
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