1st Pool

Apr 16, 2017
Mt. Plymouth, FL
We just had a 24'x52" above ground pool installed. It has a 1.5 hp 2 speed pump, 150sqft cartridge filter, and an Intex SWG with O3 generator. The pool installer told us to fill the pool, run the pump for 48 hours then take a water sample to the local pool store and they would tell me what I needed to add to the water to get the chlorine right. He said we needed to do this before we added any salt for the SWG. After lurking on here for a couple of weeks I think I should stay away from the pool store. I have a TF-100 test kit on the way but the pool came with a small test kit that I'm hoping I can get away with until the TF-100 gets here. Do I really need to run the pump for 2 days before I do anything? Do I need to get the chlorine up before I add any salt? The pool also came with a chemical starter kit that has (2) 1lb bags of Fast Shock,(1) 1 pint bottle of Algaecide 50%, and (1) 1 pint bottle of Clarifier. Is it okay to use the shock to bring the chlorine up before I add the salt? I just want to make sure I get this new pool off on the right start.



Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 17, 2010
East Texas
run pump 2 days----------NO, what's the point?
chlorine up------------NOW is good!
(2) 1lb bags of Fast Shock,---water is new, no problems
(1) 1 pint bottle of Algaecide 50%, and (1) 1 pint bottle of Clarifier.-------NO

Welcome to the forum.


LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Apr 2, 2012
Columbia SC
Welcome to TFP :)

Have you looked at pool school yet? The link is at the top of the page. Click on "getting started" and check out the ABC's of pool water chemistry.

You've done a great job by ordering the TF-100. I'd personally stay away from the pool store. You shouldn't need that Algaecide or clarifier. You'll need salt, maybe some chlorine before the SWG is up and running (bleach is chlorine) and some CYA (sold as stabilizer mostly).

Do be sure to follow any directions required for any warranty........like if the ask you to prove your water testing with pool store printouts.......well then go ahead and get it tested to keep for records. You can take care of the chemistry yourself with that TF-100'and a little reading here and asking questions.


Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
Bedford, TX

Welcome to TFP.... A Great resource for all new pool owners trying to stay out of the Pool $tore.. :shark:

I would not add anything that came in your starter kit..

SWCG's do a great job of maintaining a chlorine (FC) level , but it is harder for them to make big increases in the FC level. So, the best thing to do is use Liquid Chlorine or Plain bleach to initially bring up your chlorine level.

There is no reason you can't add salt before or after you get the chlorine level where you want it. It will not make any difference.

Keep in mind that your pool uses 2 to 4 ppm of chlorine each day. It does not sound like your pool installer added any Stabilizer (CYA) to your pool, which means your chlorine will get used up very quickly.

SWCG pools need about 70 to 80 ppm of CYA.

My advice is to add 1 jug of plain 8.25% bleach now and then half a jug every day until your kit arrives. You can then report your readings and we can get you pointed in the right direction.

And... you don't want to turn your SWCG on until 24 hours after you have added the right amount of salt.


Jim R.


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 6, 2010
San Dimas, CA (LA County)
Welcome! :wave:

You have made a couple outstanding decisions:
I think I should stay away from the pool store.
I have a TF-100 test kit on the way​
:kim: :party: :goodjob:

It's just been filled from the tap, so you know there will be zero CYA in there. So you don't need to wait to test that before adding some via the sock method.

You can be sure that any FC in the tap water is gone now that the sun has hit it. So go ahead and add bleach. Target 3 ppm. It will all disappear in one day without the CYA, but it's too soon for algae to have started, so don't worry.

Even the cheapest 2-way test kit's pH test is acceptable. So go ahead and check that. Calculating the acid dose if it needs reduction is going to be tricky without the TA test. You might just have to work it slowly a cup at a time or something until you can test TA.

Low CH doesn't matter on a vinyl pool, and if you have high CH, there really isn't anything you can do about it, since you'd be replacing the water with more of the same, so that one is no worry. You'll want to test it once you have a good kit, but no reason to keep you out of the pool.

Face it: you bathe in the same water!

Once you get your TF100, run all the tests (except CYA if you haven't added it yet) Get it all balanced and then add the salt Give it a day to dissolve and mix, and turn on the SWG. Just that easy.

You've got a fresh fill, you're staying out of the pool store with all the potions and snake oils, you will have the Cadillac of test kits soon, and you have us. I predict a Trouble-free Pool for you.
Apr 16, 2017
Mt. Plymouth, FL
Thanks for the Responses! I didn't think running it for 2 days made any since.... I'll get the liquid chlorine/bleach, stabilizer, and salt tomorrow. I'll add the chlorine/bleach and used the test kit that came with the pool to get the FC and PH numbers after the pool has circulated for a couple of hours. The TF-100 should be here on Thursday. Yes, I have been reading through Pool School I just didn't see where it mentioned how to start a new pool. It's probably there somewhere I just haven't come across it yet. This site has so much great info! Thanks for the advice.