Brand New

Djones5548

Member
Apr 29, 2017
20
Lincoln, CA
My build was just finished and the builder contracts a local pool service company to handle the initial startup for not only the chemicals but also all of the equipment and set up. Everything is up and running with the exception of the screen logic which they are scheduled to set up next week. After finding this site and spending hours reading I am not planning to continue paying for the pool service once the initial is complete. First questions. I have a cheap test kit that was included but will be ordering a TF100 today. I notice there are a couple different option for salt, is the TF better than the Taylor or vise versa? Also, the guy with the pool service never put my salt in. He said with the weather cooling down it would make more sense to just leave the salt out until spring. Thoughts? Water temp is currently in the high 60s. We don't plan on heating the pool but we will be using the spa through the winter. Is there any advantage or disadvantage to putting the salt in now vs the spring? Thanks for the help. I'll be posting all my test readings in the next week or so and the questions will really start.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
39,723
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
The TF100 is the best value for the residential pool owner. To test salt, you need the Taylor K1766. I suggest the SpeedStir for easier, more accurate testing.

You can get away with not adding the salt until spring. Once your water temperature reaches 60F your IC40 will not generate chlorine. Not sure were in Calif Roseville is but most of the state will cool enough for that to occur soon. You will need to test and add liquid chlorine (bleach) through out the winter. Once you get your test kit you will need to test for CYA to see what they left you with (have they added any?) and then use the [FC/CYA][/FC/CYA].

Take care.
 

AftonJeeper

Bronze Supporter
May 11, 2017
1,151
Twin Cities, MN
There are two apps for screen logic available for your phone/tablet. I put the basic Screen Logic app on everyone's device so they can turn everything on and off. There is also a Screen Logic Config (SLConfig) app for setting up schedules and changing pump speeds. Put that one on your device. The SLConfig app is harder to find, you may need to search for pentair to find it but it is available in both android and apple.
 

Djones5548

Member
Apr 29, 2017
20
Lincoln, CA
Thanks for the advice. I've been busy but finally got my tf kit. I did my first tests today. I think the pool company added a bunch of chlorine last week because I think they missed the week prior. Of course, that completely helped me solidify not using them.

FC 12

CC .5

PH 7.6

TA 120

CH 150

CYA 40

Looks like I have some work to do, I've been reading pool school and would appreciate any advice. Thanks!
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
16,677
Evans, Georgia
Your CH is too low for a gunite pool. Take it up to about 300, knowing that in your area it will rise on its own more over time due to evaporation.
References: Pool School - Recommended Levels

Take your pH down to 7.2 with MA, which will help lower your TA some. Then use aeration to cause the pH to rise again without it affecting the TA.
Directions: Pool School - Lower Total Alkalinity

Good plan on ditching the pool fools... you can do this stuff easily with the right test kit and motivation to learn. I think you'll do fine :)

Maddie :flower:
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
5,939
Damascus, MD
Pool Size
29000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
Since you are keeping your spa opened, I suggest you go ahead and add the salt. Don't turn on your SWCG but adding the salt now allows you to swim in the saltwater and be prepared for when the weather turns warmer. That is what I did with my new pool. I added the salt already even though the SWCG will not be fully functional until next season. We did have some late warm days so I was able to test it but didn't use it to maintain my salt levels I continued with liquid bleach. Careful how much salt you add as your water already has some salt in it (probably 1000ppm) and adding what the calculator says you need from a 0 starting point will put your salt too high.
 

Djones5548

Member
Apr 29, 2017
20
Lincoln, CA
Thanks for the input Poolgate. I've actually been contemplating adding the salt for that reason. We've been using the spa about once a week. Also, I don't really like storing the salt since I already have it.

Do I need to actually unplug the cell or is just leaving output at 0 fine?

Thanks everyone. I'm slowly bringing up the CH and trying to get the TA down.
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
5,939
Damascus, MD
Pool Size
29000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
Thanks for the input Poolgate. I've actually been contemplating adding the salt for that reason. We've been using the spa about once a week. Also, I don't really like storing the salt since I already have it.

Do I need to actually unplug the cell or is just leaving output at 0 fine?

Thanks everyone. I'm slowly bringing up the CH and trying to get the TA down.

I just left mine at 0%. It was reading the salt and gave the level and also showed the flow switch was working.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
39,723
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
When adding salt be sure your SWCG is completely powered off. High salt concentrations going through the SWCG can damage it.

Take care.
 

Djones5548

Member
Apr 29, 2017
20
Lincoln, CA
Thanks for the advice. Will do. I have my TA and ph down a little and I'm working on bringing my CH up.

While reading I noticed post advice is to have higher cya with a salt pool. Should I start to bring my cya up now even though the swcg won't be on for a while? I realize that I'll have to watch the cya/chlorine either way. My chlorine is still slowly coming down to where it should be.
 

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mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
39,723
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
If you are going to use bleach over winter just keep your CYA at 30 or above. You can raise your CYA when you turn on your SWCG in the spring.

See [FC/CYA][/FC/CYA]. Keeping a CYA between 60 and 80 with a SWCG keeps your FC from burning off during the day faster than what your SWCG can create it. Though you, like me, oversized your SWCG.

Take care.
 

Djones5548

Member
Apr 29, 2017
20
Lincoln, CA
Everything has been going well. Currently,

FC 3

PH 7.5

TA 50

CH 300

CYA 30

Salt 3400

I was able to get my CH up and have been staying on FC and PH. I'm concerned about the TA, I was happy to get it down from 120 but it keeps dropping. I'm going to pick up some baking soda and bring it back up. My question is, is it normal to have it continuously dropping? Am I adding too much acid when controlling PH?

Thank you!
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
39,723
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Let your pH rise to 7.8 and see if it stabilizes. Do not add baking soda yet until you try that.

Have you ever done a baseline test of your fill water? TA, pH, and CH.

Take care.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
21,862
Bedford, TX
D,

I suspect your TA is 50 because you are trying to keep your pH at 7.5 or below..

Most SWCG pools like a pH of 7.8, so I would let the pH increase on its own (and it will) and then when it goes over 7.8, only add enough Muriatic Acid to lower your pH to 7.5...

My pool stays at 7.5 or lower for about a microsecond, but will stay at 7.8 for a week or two without doing anything.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

CaptainUnderpants

Bronze Supporter
Aug 14, 2017
40
Long Beach, CA
The other possible reason why your PH keeps on floating up even with a low TA is that a new plaster / gunite pool tends to produce a high PH for the first 6-12 months. This was my experience for the first year. I let my PH regularly float up to 7.8 to 8.0 and started developing scaling in some portions of the pool, especially the spa, hot water, areas.

Your best bet would be to get the pool math app and double check that your CSI stays under zero, and determine what combination of TA and PH prevents scaling. My guess is that the low TA will only be a temporary thing.

Others may have better suggestions, just wanted to note that high PH is common with new gunite pools.
 
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