Alkalinity and PH

Joyjoy

New member
May 29, 2019
3
NC
Hey folks! I offered to test a friend's pool water and it's so bad I'm not sure what to tell him. His CYA is 100 and only had 1.5 of free chlorine! I know how to help with that part, but he had 0 alkalinity and 0 pH. I've never seen that before! I use the Taylor 2006 and have for a while, so I'm confident in my testing. At least for my pool! LOL I just don't know if I should tell him to add baking soda first or borax? Pool math recommended 1096 lbs of borax and 7.13 lbs of baking soda. That's a lot of borax. And should he slam it first or get the pH up? I've never tested water with the numbers so off, so I'm confused. Any help is very much appreciated!

Gallons- 7700
Free chlorine 1.5
Combined chlorine 0.5
CYA 100
Ph 0
TA 0
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
14,420
Evans, Georgia
Wow....he's OD'd on the pucks, huh??

What did PoolMath suggest as far as Washing Soda (aka Soda Ash) which you can find in the laundry aisle. It is NOT the same as 20 Mule Team Borax. It will cause a big jump in both those parameters.

The problem is you don't want to do anything all at once..... take it up in multiple steps because its safer that way as I would think the testing is somewhat skewed by the acidic nature of the water. What I mean is aim for 6.8 first...then retest...then go for 7.2....retest. See if that doesn't work better for him.

Allow time for the water to mix well between doses.

Maddie
 
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Joyjoy

New member
May 29, 2019
3
NC
Wow....he's OD'd on the pucks, huh??

What did PoolMath suggest as far as Washing Soda (aka Soda Ash) which you can find in the laundry aisle. It is NOT the same as 20 Mule Team Borax. It will cause a big jump in both those parameters.

The problem is you don't want to do anything all at once..... take it up in multiple steps because its safer that way as I would think the testing is somewhat skewed by the acidic nature of the water. What I mean is aim for 6.8 first...then retest...then go for 7.2....retest. See if that doesn't work better for him.

Allow time for the water to mix well between doses.

Maddie
It calls for 552 lbs of soda ash. I pretty much sent him home telling him to just add the baking soda and the recommended chlorine for now and let me recheck it tomorrow. He's a pool store junkie who complains about the high prices for "chemicals", but won't spend $60 for a decent test kit. Oh well. I tried to teach him and that's all I can do. Thank you!
 

Richard320

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 6, 2010
23,911
San Dimas, CA (LA County)
The pH can't be zero. You'd have lost your hand when you dipped the sample bottle in. The pool walls would be mushy and the metal parts of the pump would have dissolved.

The lowest reading on your tester is 6.8 so call it that. It may be lower. Just be prepared for multiple treatments of washing soda. to get up to where it will read. I'd go with a pound and a half to start, then go by half pounds until something comes into range. But if there's going to be any draining, do it now and save on some chemicals. And if he's a pool store sucker, tell him to buy pH Up or Soda Ash. Exactly the same as washing soda, but fancier packaging and higher priced.
 
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Joyjoy

New member
May 29, 2019
3
NC
The pH can't be zero. You'd have lost your hand when you dipped the sample bottle in. The pool walls would be mushy and the metal parts of the pump would have dissolved.

The lowest reading on your tester is 6.8 so call it that. It may be lower. Just be prepared for multiple treatments of washing soda. to get up to where it will read. I'd go with a pound and a half to start, then go by half pounds until something comes into range. But if there's going to be any draining, do it now and save on some chemicals. And if he's a pool store sucker, tell him to buy pH Up or Soda Ash. Exactly the same as washing soda, but fancier packaging and higher priced.
LOL! Ok, zero meaning it didn't register at all. I seriously doubt he's gonna listen and drain any water. He looked at me in disbelief when I told him everything he needs to do. I just hope he'll listen instead of throwing his money away at the pool store. Thanks so much and I'll advise him to go a little at a time.