Advice required (lots to cover)

Triharder

Member
Jul 10, 2019
15
Wells, maine
Hopefully ADMIN can transfer this post if water chemistry is the wrong forum for asking this question.

Hate to start an introduction off this way but here goes.
(new to pools, finally understand what i have for equipment but still lots to learn on how it all works)

Started with a pool that hadn't been opened in a few years. (Seller said just not opened for one season, neighbor said 4 years). Thankfully he has similar pool set up, he doesn't use chlorine and has automatic chemical injection so just different enough to not have advice about water chemistry. (he has a winter cover which my pool did not).

Emptied pool this spring, shoveled 3 years worth of leaves, pressure washed, acid wash (limited success as plaster is heavily etched and probably getting very thin), filled (pool store water 15k gallons, 1k rain water, probably 3k well water), turned solid green (my fault as i didn't remove rain/pollen/algae from 1k gallons remaining at bottom, got it back to clear blue (some staining on floor and walls), now a few days later I'm going backwards. Found a frog in the pool this morning and added 2 lbs granular shock last night and another 2 this morning (its a rainy day so i'm hoping the sun doesn't bake it off too fast).

Per my signature i bought a new 1 hp superpump. pool is 19k, plaster inground,( very poor condition with concrete showing in one small area by steps) weir door on order, I was missing my strainer basket flapper valve (to adjust from main drain or strainer (fixed), perplex 75ec d.e filter (powder replaced last saturday, (will do this again this weekend). A minor leak in the suction side of pump, new o-ring on the turbo-master

I'm currently using 3" tablet style chlorine in the strainer basket return. I've been shocking the pool with 2 lbs of granular shock last weeek every night, this week i cycled the pump back to 10 hours a day before last night only added granular last sunday night.
I'm pretty sure my cya is low, but i'm afraid to raise until i get my test kit (water was 800 bucks i don't want to have to drain/fill again to lower my CYA.

Here's the tricky part.
I'm testing with walmart cheapo strips (I Know, should have ordered quality kit prior to ordering water), ordered a TF-100 kit (should be here monday/tuesday).
Had pool company test water last week every other day. From what they were getting I think my TA, and PH are within range, also is my calcuim (as i had to add quite a bit). Determined it was swimable on Sunday. (again test strip checked)

Clearly the answer is to test the water with the TF-100 kit and SLAMM until i can get my OCLT underway and holding. But the tricky part for me i i'm going to be out of town for the next 4 weeks. (returning on sundays but trying to catch up in one day is going to difficult)

So, at this point i'm wondering if anybody has any good shops they recommend in the southern maine area to care for my pool for the next month? As we have a 4 month old and a 3 year old my wife won't be able to do much with the pool.

(this weekend i'll install a timer switch for the pump). vacuum and scrub the walls (did wednesday night hopefully will do each night this weekend, I'll take the D.E. filter apart (flush all DE off the fingers and reinstall with 7 lbs of D.E.
I guess i'm back to running pump 24/7 as well.

So, anybody want to offer up some advice, i'm heading out of town next wed, expect TF-100 kit to arrive monday or Tuesday.

I have pictures of the process if anybody wants to see the (spring before, during and here is the after pictures).

I'm hoping I can dig myself out of the POOL STORE MONEYHOLE, I already fell for some algaecide (which different shops disagree on using as it causes staining) which it may have done, fell for some Phospate remover, fell for some 3" chloride pucks, (i'm being conservative at I"ve spent at least $250+ on stuff i probably didn't need or shouldn't have bought).


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ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
9,716
Northern NJ
I can’t help you with shops in Maine.

You may have to put your pool care in a holding pattern with your wife just adding daily doses of liquid chlorine while you are gone. Find a local source for 10% liquid chlorine like ...


The only chemicals you regularly need for your pool is liquid chlorine and muriatic acid to lower pH. Don't use any pool store magic potions without checking here first.

Download PoolMath and read ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

When you get your test kit post the test results and we can develop your pool care plan. Plan for your pool to need about 3/4 of a gallon of 10% LC a day.
 

Triharder

Member
Jul 10, 2019
15
Wells, maine
Thanks for the quick response. I'll get some liquid chlorine tonight.
(have the babies baptism next weekend, was hoping the pool would at least look nice for the family to see)
With any luck i'll get there.

Are there any other options for pool testing that i can use to get started unitl my TF-100 arrives? (I'd imagine the cheapo test strip is too inaccurate for bothering with for this?)
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
9,716
Northern NJ
Are there any other options for pool testing that i can use to get started unitl my TF-100 arrives? (I'd imagine the cheapo test strip is too inaccurate for bothering with for this?)
Your pool water looks decent. You can pickup a basic test kit that is better than the test strips like


It will give you a good test for pH and maybe an ok test for CYA and CL. TA and CH can wait until you get your TF-100.

The key thing you will be missing is the FAS/DPD FC test which is much more accurante than the OTO tests. With the FAS/DPD test you can measue FC to 0/2 or 0/5 differnces. With the OTO test you can guess at the color to a few ppm. Also the OTO tests can only test FC up to 5 or 10 ppm whereas the FAS/DPD test can test FC at any levels.

The TF-100 also has enough reagents for testing for a season or two. The HTH test kit has small quantities of reagents. But if you can pickup something locally it may be useful until you get the TF-100 big guns.

Priority for you is to maintain your FC level. 1 gallon of 10% LC should do that. Second priority is pH,

TA, CH, and CYA can wait for when you have time to work on the pool chemistry.

CYA level is important for getting your FC in the right ballpark. Once you get a good test of CYA we can talk more.
 

Triharder

Member
Jul 10, 2019
15
Wells, maine
Will do, USPS lists from NC to Maine is about 2 days transist. So hoping ot see kit sat or Mon.
I can also get pool shop to test tonight on way home from work. (Gambling I know as they recommended the phosphate killer last time they tested and c.c and the f.c was low)

Thanks for the great help guys.

I"ll grab a picture when i get home so you can see from last sunday to todays discouraging changes. I don't believe i removed all the algae first go, so i'll keep running the filter as well?
 

Deb04

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 12, 2008
377
Seacoast, NH
I can help you some. I’m close to you. Get your chlorine at Ocean State Job Lot. $2.99/gallon for 12.5%. (Stay away from their CYA though.) I think there’s one on route one closer to you, but I know that there’s one in Newington in sales tax-free New Hampshire.

There’s a great pool shop in Eliot. They built our pool and I absolutely love everything they do. It’s Northern Pool & Spa on Harold L Dow Highway. I know they do pool maintenance, but I’m sure they don’t use TFP methods since they go out once a week. But, they’ve never given me flak for using TFP and always compliment my water and how well the liner is holding up. We have them do opening, closing, and any repairs. They’ll recommend stuff when they test your water, but they don’t push when you say no thanks.
 

Triharder

Member
Jul 10, 2019
15
Wells, maine
Thanks,
I'll visit ocean state job lot and head there after work to get some Liquid Chlorine.
I first contacted Northern Pool and Spa about the pool back before i tried to get it sorted. Like most places local they don't touch Grunite (but happy to help with chemicals and such) and of course being new to this I wasn't asking the right questions. (basically i wanted someone to do structural inspection of the plaster so i could avoid a fill/drain/fill scenario if something needed to be corrected. ) I've since learned more about the plaster (still learning).

I'll check with them if they are available to watch the pool weekly while i'm gone.

thanks again for the help.
 

thetekgeek

Bronze Supporter
Jun 8, 2018
164
Nebraska
May I suggest some light reading while you are waiting for your kit?



You will likely be performing a SLAM once you get your kit, so that article will be critical to your success. Post your test results here before you begin.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
9,716
Northern NJ
Will do, USPS lists from NC to Maine is about 2 days transist. So hoping ot see kit sat or Mon.
I can also get pool shop to test tonight on way home from work. (Gambling I know as they recommended the phosphate killer last time they tested and c.c and the f.c was low)
We don't find pool store tests are very reliable. But get what you can and share it. Your own testing with the HTH test kit is preferred to pool store tests. Just take their printout and mutter that you will study it at home and walk out without buying any of the recommendations.

I"ll grab a picture when i get home so you can see from last sunday to todays discouraging changes.
Pics always help us understand your situation. They also lets uis all judge the progress.

I don't believe i removed all the algae first go, so i'll keep running the filter as well?
Most important to keep putting in at least a gallon of 10% LC a day to keep any algae from growing until you can eradicate it all.

Filtering does not kill algae. How much are you running your filter everyday?
 

Triharder

Member
Jul 10, 2019
15
Wells, maine
Understood, that filtering will not remove algae. I'd prefer to not run it continously but it seems to a good way to turnover the water and keep the chlorine mixing (that may not be a thing though?)

Its currently running and has been since last night. (It ran continously until monday 5am, then i ran it tuesday 7pm unitl 5am, I did not run it wednesday night as i ran it thursday daytime and its been one since (sorry this is confusing, abt 8 hours a day, 1hp pump @19k gallons should turn over just under 7 hours.

sorry i didn't take the pictures. I think my self-esteem just dropped to far after such promising results to be going backwards a few days later. I was hoping the chlorine would help start lifting the staining, instead its worse.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
9,716
Northern NJ
Once you add chlorine it mixes in less than an hour. Water turnover is a myth. You can run your pump less if you want. Read link below.


For the staining read link below. If stains get worse with CL they are likely metal stains - iron or copper.

 

Triharder

Member
Jul 10, 2019
15
Wells, maine
800 dollars as my pool is more than 150 feet from the road, otherwise it would have been only 700 for 15k gallons.
I believe there water was fine, tested and usable, it was the existing water that was left from the rain, i'm sure was over 75 degrees and had been sitting for weeks. I wanted to clean that water out and acid wash the pool more but putting a roof on the house trumphed that plan, so i was told leaving the pool empty was terrible for the paster and could cause it to float.
So i had it filled, let it sit of course overnight or 2 while backfilling with well water.

But, i believe my algeacide (picture below isn't helping with the staining)20190706_145708.jpg20190706_145628.jpg
 

Triharder

Member
Jul 10, 2019
15
Wells, maine
The non-Grunite pool store solid me this stuff.
The Grunite pool store tired to warn me, (granted being too new this i was blindy following the 1st place as they sold me the water). As my walls were already stained or so i thought I figured how bad could it be. Guess I know better now.

I can't imagine the pools store would comp me replacement water (figure that's not a possiblity)

Looks like i'll be staring at stains for a while.
 
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