Brand New Pool - First Fill Questions


Bronze Supporter
May 4, 2020
North Florida
After months of preparing the ground, we're about to (finally!) set up our new 15ft intex above ground pool (w/ sand pump and SWG) tomorrow. I've run the tests with my TfTestKit on the water coming from the hose that'll be filling the pool and received the following:

FC: 1
pH: 7.5
TA: 280
CH: 200
CYA: 0 (? water was still virtually clear)
Salt: 0-200

My big questions about starting out are:

- Do I need to add chlorine (bleach) manually at first to get FC to the recommended level?
- Do I wait to add salt to the water at a later date for the SWG... or do I just go ahead and raise the salt to the recommended level right away and let the SWG add the chlorine?

Any other tips for a first fill are greatly appreciated. Thanks!


Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
Evans, Georgia
Using liquid chlorine, put in aprox 1 quart of 10% to take you to 5ppm of FC. Add 40 ounces of granular CYA stabilizer to bring you up to 60ppm. Let all this mix well. You'll lose some FC daily, as chlorine is a consumed item in a pool.

Go ahead and add your salt, but leave the salt generator off for a day while the salt dissolves. Your liquid chlorine will protect that pool in the meantime. Then when you're sure the salt is all dissolved turn on the SWG and let it *maintain* your Free Chlorine level.

Remember you can always use liquid chlorine to top off or amend your FC levels.

Sometimes in FL with the frequent rains and draining down of pool water, you'll have to re-add your CYA more than most folks. That's ok. Just use your test kit to monitor the levels.

PoolMath is your go to helper for quantity of chems to add.

QUestions? Holler!



Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Great job on doing a test of your fill water.

CYA does not occur in water naturally, you must add it. Start with 40 ppm worth of stabilizer and once that is dissolved, test after a day or two and then take it to 70 ppm.
Use liquid chlorine to maintain FC using the FC/CYA Chart. Assume the CYA you are dissolving is in the water for FC levels.
Your pH will rise with that TA. Get muriatic acid and test pH every other day or so and lower it to 7.4 from 7.8.

Add salt. Only add 2/3 rds of what you calculate is needed, then test salinity after a day or so and add the balance. Once fully mixed, start the SWCG.


Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
Evans, Georgia
Additional thoughts-
-Do not add or worry about calcium. Your pool doesn't need this.
-You can lower your TA with muriatic acid. Each time you lower your pH, it will help lower the TA too. This is your least important element.

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