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Thread: Brand new to pools and waiting for my new test kit!

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    Brand new to pools and waiting for my new test kit!

    Hey everyone! I just found the forum today, and am enjoying reading up on all of this great information. A little background on our pool...We purchased a house that was built in 1980 last year. It has a 12x40' lap pool, only 3ft deep the whole way across. It's got a vinyl liner that I *think* I remember hearing that they replaced 6 or 7 years ago (also, the liner appears to have some stains, but that's for another post). I have NEVER, EVER had any experience with a pool, maintenance of it, heck, barely even swimming in one (which is why 3ft is the perfect depth for me!). Anyhow, my dh grew up with a pool and assured me it was no big deal, so as far as I was concerned, it was his job to maintain.

    Fast forward a year, and let's just say I don't find his maintanance skills up to par! So, I decided to take matters into my own hands and called a local pool company to start coming out and maintaining it. Yikes! I'm too much of a cheapskate for that, so here I am. Thank goodness I've found you all!

    As I said, I am not familiar with the workings of pools at all. So, I've had dh show me how to vacuum it, and I have a general sort of notion of the whole pump idea and that's about it. I just now ordered the TF100 testing kit. Right now for testing all I have is a box of strips that expired in April of last year - who knows how accurate they are, right?

    Currently, the pool is clear, but all of my numbers (at least according to expired test strips) are really, really low. As in a FC of barely 1, if that, and a ph of somewhere in the 6 range. Should I add some bleach and borax right now, just to get things up a little, or should I just wait and see what the good test kit says?

    Anyone have any experience with how long it takes to get the test kit to the West coast (noticed it ships from the East).

    Anyway, thanks a bunch for all of the information, and I'm sure I'll be around pestering for quite some time!
    12x40x3 IG lap pool, vinyl liner. 26" sand filter, 1HP pump.

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Butterfly's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    South Carolina
    Hey girl!

    If it was my pool, I would take a water sample to the pool store ASAP for testing and post back here the full set of #'s.

    But, if the pH is below 7, I would get the borax in there immediately. Shoot for 7.2 to 7.6 - ish range.

    Same for the chlorine. Get some in there! Try 2 to 3 ppm until we learn the CYA level.

    Use Jason's Pool Calculator to compute your doses. Link in my sig.

    Congrats on ordering the TF Test kit! Good are already way ahead of the game! Dave usually ships the same day if ordered before 2 PM (I think) should get tracking info.

    When you have some time, add all your pool and equipment info in your signature. This will be very helpful for members responding to your posts.

    If you haven't found them already, here are two stickies for you:

    "ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry" by duraleigh:

    "BBB" or, "What are all these pool chemicals?" by Waterbear:

    You can find all the stickies in the sub-heading at the top of each page. Also, link in my sig.

    I think your DH will be impressed with your newfound skills!

    Welcome to the forum
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

    ~ One should not use a sledge hammer to swat a mosquito. ~

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  3. Back To Top    #3
    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Silver Spring, MD
    I agree with what jjparrish said.

    If you post your water test results we can give you much more specific advice.

    Also, remember that chlorine needs to be added every day, preferably in the evening.
    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

  4. Back To Top    #4
    Thank you for your replies. I will bring a sample to the pool store tomorrow. I'd like to do it today, but with gas at $4.19, I need to plan my trips across town a little better. Do I just bring it in a mason jar? Is that usually a free service they provide?

    So, I put the numbers (that I got from expired test strips) into the pool calc and it said that I should add 68 oz of bleach, 101 oz borax, and 124 oz baking soda. My only concern right now is, what if those test strip numbers are horribly off? Would it hurt to add those things and then find out that the numbers aren't accurate? Should I just wait another day and see what the pool store reading says?

    12x40x3 IG lap pool, vinyl liner. 26" sand filter, 1HP pump.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    In the Industry

    duraleigh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Sebring, Florida
    Hey, Mary,

    Welcome! (We have to have three errands consolidated before we go into town....20 miles each way )

    I think I'd wait 'til you got the kit before adding anything definitive. (you should get an email from DHL giving you a delivery date....4-5 working days is my guess. Thank you for the order! )

    That your water is clear now is a good sign. While you are waiting, I believe you could safely put 1-2 qts of clorox in your pool each evening. That'll guarantee your FC won't get too low or too high.

    Don't be surprised if your own testing yields different results than the pool store.......they are all notorious for incorrect testing. Yours will be on the money....promise
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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