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Thread: brand new test results....do WHAT???

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    midtngal's Avatar
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    brand new test results....do WHAT???

    Well, I finally got the pool filled a couple of weeks ago. About a week or so ago the PB threw a puck into each skimmer (2). I did not see the container so I have no idea what it was. So I've kind of played around with the testing thinking he *should* be the one balancing the water the first round. (I had to be the one to vacuum it to have a clean pool, so him balancing the water...NOT...shouldn't really be surprising!)

    Here are the numbers I have gotten and I am shocked at how out of whack they are already!

    FC - 29!!!!!!!!!
    CC - 0
    TC - 29
    PH - 6.8
    TA - this one I'm not sure about - since the chlorine is so high it's either WAY over 300 since it never turned after even 30 drops OR 40 (when it turned blue) OR 70 (when it turned yellow)
    CYA - 90 (could possibly even call it 100!)

    Now, I'm hoping that maybe this CYA will come down some since I just took the pucks out of the skimmers over the weekend since I saw that the CYA was so high. Otherwise, I'm seeing that draining some is the only way to lower it?? Please say no...I just just got through filling it!

    I plugged the #"s into Jason's calculator and it says to add 84oz of borax and 60 oz of baking soda. Should I go ahead and do this??? Needless to say...the gates are now locked so he can't get to the water!!

    As usual thanks bunches for your help!

    Karen
    10,700 gal IG vinyl
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    If your chlorine is really 29, all of the other test results are suspect, so hold off on adding anything. How was the water tested? Is the water clear?
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    midtngal's Avatar
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    John, sorry...I used the TF test kit from duraleigh. I've gotten this CL number for 2 days in a row. I thought it might have gone down since we have a very sunny day yesterday. The water is very clear and looks very good.
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    With CYA around 100 it may take a little while for FC to come down to reasonable levels.

    I am a little worried about the PH. High FC levels normally make the PH test read higher than it actually is. If your PH is actually well below 6.8 then you could be damaging the vinyl. But at the same time it is dangerous to adjust it because you don't have a reliable test to tell you when you have adjusted it the right amount.

    At high FC levels the TA test goes from blue to yellow, so use the number from when it turned yellow.

    I would start with a little water replacement. Get your CYA down to 80, which shouldn't take too much water replacement. That will also bring down the FC level a little and speed up the loss of chlorine, so that the PH test will start working again sooner. If the PH test remains low when FC is below 20 then you should start adding some borax to try and raise the PH.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    On a new pool, he put a whole lot more than a puck in each skimmer to get to those levels. You are W-a-a-a-y overdosed if the test results are correct.

    Just a check on the CYA test.....the dot disappears in the view tube when you put in about 1" of water, right?
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    John, the pool calculator says to empty 56% of the water. If you think this is too much..how much would you suggest??

    duraliegh...I'm not surprised that this PB has screwed this up. It just never seems to end with him! Yes, the dot disappears after about an inch.

    Guess it's a good thing the water is too cold -68- to swim in...I'd be a blond whether I wanted to or not!!
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    I'd suggest biting the bullet and draining some now. If you targeted 80ppm CYA, which is still a little high but manageable, you would have to drain off 20% of your water. You should lose a little more CYA thru splashout and refills over the rest of the Summer.

    Let your FC of 29 come on down to about 10 or so and plan on leaving it at that level the rest of the swim season (that's assuming a CYA of 80)

    Now, before you do either of the above, get your pH up to about 7.2 using 20 mule team borax. You can find it in the laundry section at most grocery stores and the amount you'll need can be calced using Jason's calculator.

    You might have a couple of other minor issues (to be addressed later) but adjust pH would be my first priority and then getting the CYA down to 80 or below would be my second. The FC will slowly come down on it's own....probably by about 2ppm daily.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
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    Okay, I'll follow your instructions. I've actually been stocking up on borax knowing I would be doing BBB as soon as the PB was through doing his thing, but it looks like I need to put a stop to him and get this done so my pool is swimable soon. One question...with the CL still at fairly high levels throughout the summer, will that be an issue as far as bleaching out hair, swimsuits, etc.?? Also, I would assume that my SWG is on, but since I don't have any of my literature I have no idea if it is and how to turn it off; which I assume with this high a CL would be a good thing to do (?).

    Thanks so much for your help guys! I'd be clueless without ya!
    10,700 gal IG vinyl
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    Emerson 1HP pump
    Bioguard Mineral Springs SWG
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    While you will have to have somewhat higher FC levels with your high CYA, you have two things working for you in the 'bleaching stuff' category... First, with an SWG, you can run slightly lower FC levels than for a non-swg pool with your CYA. Not sure the mechanism, but probably due to the fact that the water as it passes thru the cell is shocked.
    Secondly, the CYA, while protecting the chlorine from degradation from the sun, also decreases its effectiveness. THis is why the higher the CYA, the higher the FC you need to keep your pool sanitary. Thus the bleaching effects are similar to (or less than) a pool with 0 CYA and 1-3ppm FC. HTH!

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    Oh good...thanks MQ!

    Now, there seems to something else to this situation. I went out this morning to put the scumbugs I had gotten into the skimmers. One of them had this milky film on top of the water. Kind of like the paper algae (I think that's what it's called!) that I have seen described on other posts. That is the only place it is. The water is as clear as it could be. Maybe this is just some kind of "gunk" from the air??? Is it possible that algae could form with this high of a CL???
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    That may be white tissue mold. The chlorine will eventually kill it, but if you keep the cover of the skimmer off then sunlight will help to kill it even faster. It may already be dead and slowly decomposing from the high chlorine level anyway though as was pointed out 29 ppm FC with 100 ppm CYA is about the same as only 0.3 ppm FC with no CYA in terms of killing power -- about 3 times normal (manually dosed) chlorine levels, but still less than usual shock levels.
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    Thanks Richard. I came home at lunch today and took the cover off the skimmer. When I got home this afternon the "stuff" was still there. I did notice that it has a small amount of black something or other in it. I'm wondering if this could be jet fuel? I live fairly close to the airport and am in a direct path so jets are going over all the time...even as I type this! Just thought I'd throw that out there!

    Now, something really screwy is going on here! I was getting ready to put the borax in the pool, but thought I would check the PH first. It's reading in the 7.2 block now! How can that be??? I'm checking and rechecking myself to make sure I'm reading it right, so I KNOW it said 6.8 last night. There could not have been anyone in here because the gates are locked (unless they jumped the fence!) and no one else lives here. So should I go ahead and at least add a little borax or leave it alone?? The CL was still high as the color was orange. I checked the SWG and it was only set on 20%, but I lowered it to around 2 anyway.
    10,700 gal IG vinyl
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    tn,

    do not add any borax. Chalk it up to one of those mysteries that will never be explained and go forward from here.

    The deposit is NOT jet fuel....trust me. I also do not think you have algae...your test results leave little doubt about that.

    What you do have is Spring. This time of year in the South, ALL kinds of junk gets into the pool from the blooming and sprouting vegetation and trees around us. I believe that is your issue....could be wrong but that's what I think. My suggestion would be a large dose of POP ( and possibly a VERY large adult beverage) and let your pump run 24/7 filtering out all that stuff and your pool will soon sparkle.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
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    Hay, hay...I like the adult beverage part!! *That* I can do!! I agree that this most likely is just the normal Southern "gunk" in the air! I guess at this point I'm pretty much being a "poolochondriac"!

    Something that was brought to my attention today though. I went to a pool store I had visited last week (to get the 12 lb. bag of baking soda that I told myself at the time I should have bought!) and was telling this very nice lady the numbers and concerns and she says that at this level of CL it could potentially bleach out my liner. Are any of you guys concerned about that?? Or is this some more"poolochondriactitis"??
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    Good thing to be concerned about.....an FC of 29 has some bleaching potential but the thing that virtually eliminates that concern is your very high CYA level. Chemgeek has some great research on the subject but, in short, the CYA "buffers" the effect of high chlorine so you have no problems with bleaching.

    "poolochondriac", ehh? i LIKE THAT. That may end up being part of the TFP lingo.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
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    Okay...I'll stop now. (Large adult beverage in hand!) New pool owner who doesn't want to have "issues" cause I know they won't be handled in a timely nor necessarily correct manner. I'll go buy some of that "POP"

    "poolochondriac"... yup...from the Karen version of Webster's dictionary! Pretty much describes it don't ya think??? I like to make up my own words! Have a fantabulous evening!
    10,700 gal IG vinyl
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    Emerson 1HP pump
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    midtngal's Avatar
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    Okay...just for a backup test in case there was an argument with my PB I took my water to be tested today at a pool store. Their readings are WAY different that what I got -

    FC - 4.0 (huh?????)
    CC - 0
    TC - 4.0
    pH - 6.9
    CYA - 35 (huh?????)
    TA - 40
    CH - 103

    This is so very strange to me since this sample was the exact same water that I did my testing from. How could there be such a huge difference in the numbers?? She didn't try to sell me anything, but said I needed to add 5 lbs. of baking soda and 6 lbs. of calcium hardness. I told her that I was under the impression that CH didn't matter in vinyl pools and she says that it does for the first couple of years so as to not dry out the liner and have it crack.

    So, now, needless to say I am absolutely perplexed. Does any of this make sence to anyone??? Can you clue me in if it does??
    10,700 gal IG vinyl
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    Pool store testing is very inconsistent. A few stores are good but most of them do not test carefully and can be way off. Bad pool store testing happens all the time. Take your water to three different stores and you will get three completely different sets of numbers. If you feel like it and you noticed what kind of testing they did (drops, test strip, machine) we can tell you what is most likely to be going wrong with their testing.

    Trust your own test numbers.

    CH does not matter with vinyl so long as it isn't way high. If CH is over 300 you may need to think about it, otherwise don't worry about it.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Thanks Jason. I was afraid there for a minute I was crazy!! It looked to me that she had both the drops and the machine....like maybe she used the drops and then the machine read them (???). Just noticed something on this print out too. It says the water temp was 85. Since I had just taken it out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes prior and it was still cold to the touch, I'm thinking that's another indicator that this printout isn't worth the paper it's on!

    Guess I'll just do another set of tests this weekend and compare. I've been doing the pH and CL everday and the CL side is still orange and pH shows 7.2. I want to check the CYA again since she's showing 35 and I show 100!

    Thanks so much for help!
    10,700 gal IG vinyl
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    Letro Platinum pressure side cleaner
    Emerson 1HP pump
    Bioguard Mineral Springs SWG
    2 skimmers

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