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Thread: Overwhelmed!

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    Overwhelmed!

    Hey all, I have been lurking on here since Friday when we purchased our AGP. And I have learned alot, but I am now feeling very overwhelmed. My husband is not a pool guy and I will get no help from him in helping to maintain the pool. They installed the pool yesterday and today I am filling it up. I would really like to use the BBB method. It seems to be very practical and economical. Well, it came with very little info on how to start it up and maintain it. Though, it does say not to put any chemicals in it until it is full. My filter is a Voyager Swimpro with a cartridge element filter. My pump is a Hayward Power-flo LX 1.5 hp. When they installed it they didn't really tell us anything about how to operate it. I don't think that the instructions that came with it are very clear considering that I know nothing about the pool. The filter has an Aquasmart cleaning system attached to it to put the "Bac Pac" in it. Can I use that and still use the BBB method and still use the shock chemicals that came with it? Like I said I am very overwhelmed and don't even know where to begin to turn the pump and filter on when the pool is full. By the way, my pool is an Oyster Bay(Artesian) 24' round 52" deep AGP. It is already giving me a headache by stressing me out. I don't want to do anything wrong and "break" something important. You all have been very helpful to others on here and I could really use some of your smartness. LOL! I will get some pics put up as soon as I have time.

    tHANKS,
    Trish
    24' round 52" deep AGP! Voyager Swimpro filter, Hayward Powerflo LX 1.5 hp pump,

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Hi, Trish,

    Welcome to the forum. Read some of the articles in the "stickies" section just above. Particularly, the 'ABC's of pool water chemistry will get you started.

    Look for the ingredients on that Bac Pac thing and tell us what's in it. Same with any other chemistry they gave you.

    Meanwhile, as soon as it's full (or even a little before) go ahead and put in stabilizer (also callet CYA) and chlorine. You can use JasonLion's calculator in any of his posts to tell you how much.

    I'll let other's on the forum comment on the need for a test kit.

    Getting the stabilizer and chlorine (I'd use 6% Clorox) in your pool will be essential to keeping it clear...all your other parameters can be adjusted more slowly.

    Keep us posted and ask lot's of questions....it's a great site.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  3. Back To Top    #3
    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Hey Trish and welcome

    Okay, don't get too stressed.....all will be okay

    The best investment we made in our pool is a good test kit. I recommend the TF Test kit sold here by one of our members, duraleigh. Link in my sig.

    Also, have your fill water tested so that you will know what you have in your pool and what you will be adding.

    It would be helpful if you could put all your pool and equipment info in your signature.

    As Dave said, read the 'stickies' and make good use of Jason's Pool Calculator, link in my sig.

    Don't let this overwhelm you. Remember, it's hard to kill a pool :P

    Keep asking your questions until you are comfortable. Plenty of folks ready to help you.

    When you have time, post some pix!
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    A good place to get started is my BBB for Beginners article in the May issue of the newsletter, look just below the Meet the Members announcement.
    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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    Ok, I have read the stickies and the info about BBB. The Aquasmarte system is a mineral system. Is it still ok to use the BBB? I don't know what kind mineral though. All of the pool chemicals are swimway products. The ph plus is sodium carbonate, the conditioner is cyanuric acid, the ph minus is sodium bisulfate, the blast(shock) is potassium peroxymonosulfate and all that is in the "bac pac" is trichlor tabs. How do I put pics on here? I tried and it said that the file size was to big and it was just one pic.

    Trish
    24' round 52" deep AGP! Voyager Swimpro filter, Hayward Powerflo LX 1.5 hp pump,

  6. Back To Top    #6

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    The only way that I can get the pics on here is to put a link to the ones that I posted on Myspace. Everytime I try to upload a photo it says that the file is to big and when I try to compress it into a zip extension it still doesnt' work. Any suggestions on how to do it if the Myspace thing is not acceptable.

    Trish

    BTW, I read that the mineral in the cleaning system is silver!
    24' round 52" deep AGP! Voyager Swimpro filter, Hayward Powerflo LX 1.5 hp pump,

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Hey neighbor!

    You have the exact same system that came with my AGP a couple years back. Do you need help with getting the pump going, etc?

    If you're going to use BBB, I wouldn't use the bacpac's, and for sure don't use the mineral insert. The trichlor in the bacpac's have both chlorine and CYA in them, and can cause your CYA level to go high. Keep the bacpac's to use should you go out of town for a week or more, and use regular ol' bleach for your daily chlorine needs.

    As you know, Blast is MPS, which is a non-chlorine shock. You can use it, but it might cause false readings on your combined chlorine tests. To be truthful, once you get your water chemistry right and maintain your FC as you should, you shouldn't have to shock your pool except possibly at opening and closing. BTW, Blast is expensive, bleach is fairly inexpensive.. I like inexpensive.

    You'll use the conditioner once you get the pool filled and the pump running. The conditioner (CYA) will help keep your chlorine from being used up by sunlight.

    The other chemicals they gave me I never used, and ended up throwing away a few days ago. I use borax to raise my pH if needed, baking soda to raise my TA and pH if needed, and muriatic acid to lower my pH and/or TA as needed.

    If you need some help getting the pump up and going once the pool fills, just lemme know, and I can walk you through it.

    Welcome to TFP!

    PS - the pool guy did tell you how high the water had to be on the skimmer to be full, didn't he?

    Regards,
    Mike
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

  8. Back To Top    #8
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    The 'minerals' that are used are zinc and silver!!! My recommendation is to not use them. Your system is a 'private label' vesion of the Pool Frog. It is made by King Technology. You are right that the bac pack is just trichlor. The recommened .5 pm FC is just too low to maintain sanizited water in event of such things as a bird pooping in the pool (it happens) or someone entering the pool who is not completely 'clean' after using the bathroom (happens MUCH more than you would believe). The silver is too slow an aciting santizer and .5 ppm FC can get used up very quickly in such cases. The zinc is just a metal algaecide. It works about the same as copper does but is not as effective (which is why King Technology sells a liquid copper based algaecide called Frog Bam). Zinc stains are not as noticeable as copper stains but Zinc does stain pools non the less.

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    Floater's Avatar
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    Okay, I think I'm catching up with what I'm suppose to do and looks like I'll start doing the BBB .. makes sense now. One more question I have regarding what the PS told me with the system that have which is the same as OP and MikeInTN and not anything I've seen yet is the deal with the "Phosfree" stuff. I was told to open and close my pool with Pool Perfect something or other and then continue a weekly maintence with this Phosfree. Is this something that is needed to be done? It states "normal sanitization will prevent algae growth." I'm going to be running out of this as I used it all last season and don't want to buy another bottle at $50 if I don't have to. Sounds like if I keep the FC where it needs to be stuff like this wouldn't be necessary?
    ~_~ Sherry ~_~
    24' Round AGP, 13,500gal, 1.5hp Hayward
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    TF100 Test Kit BBB Baby!!!

  10. Back To Top    #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeInTN
    If you need some help getting the pump up and going once the pool fills, just lemme know, and I can walk you through it.
    That would be great, Thanks! It should be full by this evening. And Yes the installer said that the water needed to be half way up the skimmer to start the pump.

    Trish
    24' round 52" deep AGP! Voyager Swimpro filter, Hayward Powerflo LX 1.5 hp pump,

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Phos Free removes phosphates from the pool. In a properly maintained pool it almost never make any difference what the phosphate level is, so Phos Free is not normally worth purchasing/using. It can also occasionally make the pool cloudy. Other than that it doesn't hurt anything but your wallet.
    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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    Ok so hopefully here are the pics.







    24' round 52" deep AGP! Voyager Swimpro filter, Hayward Powerflo LX 1.5 hp pump,

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    Ok, let me know if I'm correct in this. I can just leave out the mineral cartridge and not use the trichlor "bac Pac" and that won't mess up my equipment? So if that is correct is there anyway to just bypass the aquasmarte system altogether?

    Another question: How long can I run the pump on an extension cord? My electrician friend who is going to do the wiring for me, is busy with other jobs until the end of next week and he said that it would be fine to run it on an extension cord(12 guage) until then. He also said that he has known people wo has run them on one for months without any problems. My othe worry is that the pool store said I couold run it on an extension cord until we got the electrician out here, but in the paperwork it says that running it on an extension cord would void the warranty!!!


    So assuming that I am correct, I am going to take the mineral cartridge out! Should I go ahead and add bleach before it is full? Also on the filter basket on the pump it says to add water before running. Will that fill up when the water goes into the lines or should i add water to that first?

    Thanks,
    Trish
    24' round 52" deep AGP! Voyager Swimpro filter, Hayward Powerflo LX 1.5 hp pump,

  14. Back To Top    #14
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    A serious heavy duty extension cord will work as long as the end doesn't get wet. You do not want to use an extension cord of too small a gauge as it might melt and short out or lower the voltage too much for the pump to work properly.

    You don't want to add any chemicals until you can get some circulation going.
    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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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pfleavell
    Quote Originally Posted by MikeInTN
    If you need some help getting the pump up and going once the pool fills, just lemme know, and I can walk you through it.
    That would be great, Thanks! It should be full by this evening. And Yes the installer said that the water needed to be half way up the skimmer to start the pump.

    Trish
    Did he also leave the little door out of your skimmer, and tell you to drop a tennis ball in the skimmer basket to break up the vortex? That little door is called a weir, and is really better than the tennis ball, plus when you shut your pump off, the weir helps keep **** from floating back out into the pool. The water level needs to be a tad higher than halfway if you use the weir. Halfway will put the water level between two of the screws on the sides of the skimmer, right? I'd go for filling a little more until you get to the upper of those two screws if you use the weir. Use the tennis ball method, and you can probably get away with halfway up the skimmer.

    Now, to start your pump:
    (1) first thing to do is to make sure your three way valve on the other side of the Aquasmarte is set to 1/2 . I think the positions are 1/2, full closed, and full skim. This will put the return water to both of your returns.

    (2) Make sure your skimmer basket is in place. The basket has some flattened sides around the rim that match up with the rim in the skimmer. Once your water level is up to where you need it to be in the skimmer, open the air bleed valve on top of your filter housing (should be a little lever behind it that you can turn). You'll hear air hissing out of the filter housing, and you should be able to see water filling up the pump basket. When water squirts out of the valve, close it.

    (3)Now, plug in your pump. You'll see some air initially bubbling around in the pump basket, but this should disappear, and it should look clear in your pump basket, and you should feel water coming out of your top return now.

    (4)Go ahead and open the bleed valve one more time to get out any air that was trapped in the pump, close when water squirts, and you should be good to go!

    I wouldn't take the Aquasmarte feeder out of your system. Like i said in an earlier post, if you're going to be gone for a week or so, throw a bacpac in to use for chlorination while you're gone. Using them once in a while shouldn't bump your CYA level up dramatically.

    Oh, in case the pool guy didn't tell you this either, you'll need to get a 1.5" rubber plug from a hardware store such as Lowe's or Home Depot so you can plug your skimmer, should you need to open up the filter housing or pump basket for cleaning, or open up the Aquasmarte feeder to throw in a bacpac. To do this, turn the pump off, take the skimmer basket out, put the plug in the hole in the bottom of the skimmer. Turn your 3-way valve to full closed. Now you should be able to remove the plug at the bottom back of the filter housing and drain the water from the filter. This also takes the pressure off of the pump basket, so if need be you can take the cover off of it and clean the strainer basket there as well.

    I know it's been said before, but the best investment you can make is a good test kit. The test strips that came with the pool are pretty much worthless is you're going to use BBB. The two kits recommended on this forum are the TF-100 sold by a fellow forum member here, and the Taylor K-2006 kit. I have the K-2006 myself, but lots of forum members have bought the TF-100 and loved it, and it never hurts to have the guy who makes and sells the kits available on here either. Both kits are a bit pricey, but once you get used to doing your own testing, you'll be glad you spent the money. The money you'll save in chemicals alone will pay for it.

    HTH,
    Mike
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

  16. Back To Top    #16
    poolhound's Avatar
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    If you're going to use an extension cord I would get a GFI adapter (plugs into outlet before extension cord) to get some protection from electrical shock. It is not perfect, but is much better than nothing.
    24000gal IG, VL, 1.5 HP, Pentair 60/60D Sand 325#, BBB, Liquidator, Dolphin M400

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Your pool looks very similar to mine but I have the salt system. I think we will be able to start up the filter tomorrow if the electrician comes. Let me know how it goes when you start up. Do you know how long you have to wait to start swimming?
    27' 52" AGP, approx 18600 gal., 1.5 HP Hayward Power Flo LX with Voyager cartridge filter, Aquatrol SWG

  18. Back To Top    #18

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    ok pool is full, but when I turn the pump on, there is no water coming out of the returns. The valve on the other side of the aquasmarte system actually has1,2,3, and 4 marked on there. it is set to 3. there is a valve on the pump side that says on and off and it is set to on. Is this all correct? I am so afraid of messing something up, please help.
    24' round 52" deep AGP! Voyager Swimpro filter, Hayward Powerflo LX 1.5 hp pump,

  19. Back To Top    #19

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    I have no pressure in the flter and the skimmer is making really loud sucking noises!! Someone please tell me what to do! I now have water goin into the skimmer and comig out of the returns. What could be the problem?
    24' round 52" deep AGP! Voyager Swimpro filter, Hayward Powerflo LX 1.5 hp pump,

  20. Back To Top    #20
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    The water level might not be high enough. If the skimmer is drawing in any air you need to raise the water level.
    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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