can't get alkalinity down help

reneec

Member
Jun 12, 2007
24
I am a fairly new pool owner. We got our liner replaced and got new water. Since this i can't seem to get the water right. It is very cloudy and won't hold chlorine. I have to shock every other day. When I test all seems fine except the alkalinity. It is reading about 300. I had my water tested by a pool company yesterday. Here are the numvbers
Ph 7.5
Total Alk 220
calcium 210
cya 20
fc 0
tc 0
They suggested I put in 5lbs of muriatic acid and retest this morning. I did that and my alkalinity reading has not changed. I really need some help. I don't know what to do. My pool is so cloudy right now that I can hardly see the main drain. Is the pool store leading my astray. Why can't I lower my alkalinity.

Renee
 

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,880
Silver Spring, MD
Welcome to TFP!

Alkalinity is not your problem. You will want to adjust the alkalinity eventually, but you should take care of the algae first.

You need to bring your chlorine level (FC) up to at least 12 and hold it there for a couple of days. That means adding chlorine at least twice a day, and more often if you can manage it, to bring it back up to 12.

If you don't have a good quality test kit you should get one. That is the best investment in your pool you can make.

It is also a good idea to brush the pool throughly once a day and keep an eye on the filter pressure and backwash/clean the filter as needed or every couple of days in any case (while the water is cloudy).

When you have a chance, read the articles in the "The Stickies" section of the site, see the link in the page sub-heading. They are full of good background information.

Good Luck!
 

reneec

Member
Jun 12, 2007
24
If my alkalinity is too high doesn't that mean I can't hold the chlorine. I was told it was a waste of money to put chlorine if my alkalinity was to high.
 

Rangeball

Well-known member
May 25, 2007
785
reneec said:
If my alkalinity is too high doesn't that mean I can't hold the chlorine. I was told it was a waste of money to put chlorine if my alkalinity was to high.
In my experience, Absolutely false.

Last year my alk approached 300 ppm and I was able to hold FC just fine with perfectly clear water. Elevated alkalinity creates potential for PH rise, which is why I lowered it.

Seriously, if you have no chlorine and your pool is cloudy, 99% of the time it's the start of an algae bloom. Hammer it with bleach to 12 ppm and keep it there, like Jason said. And a good test kit will be your best friend :)
 

nocaster

Well-known member
May 18, 2007
53
Enid, Oklahoma
reneec,

You lower your TA by aerating the water (how you do this varies). My TA was 290 when I opened my pool this year but I have lowered it to 120 by aerating. My pool has a spa jet on one of the returns so I just let it dump air into the pool. It has taken about 4 weeks to get it down but it does work. However, I would concentrate on clearing your water before worrying too much about the TA.

Have you tested your fill waters TA? I fill my pool with my well which is extremely alkaline so I'm always fighting to keep the TA in check.
 

reneec

Member
Jun 12, 2007
24
Yes, when my pool was filled it was filled with well water. Also whenever I add water I use my well water. I have two spa jets in my steps. How do I get them to put air into my water. I am trying to clear my water. I put 4 lbs of shock in and I am checking it every hour . Do you agree that I need to keep dumping shock into my pool? It seems everyone has a different opinion. I am so confused. I am not sure what way to go. My TC reading is very high now. When it starts to lower should I add more shock?

Reneec
 

Rangeball

Well-known member
May 25, 2007
785
reneec, what are you shocking with?

Remember, shock is a verb, not a product. You can shock with many things. If you are using pool store "shock", it is most likely granular dichlor, which is stabilized and over time can build your CYA (stabilizer) up to levels that create their own potential problems, or calcium hypochlorite, which isn't stabilized by too high calcium can also cause problems, one of them being hazy/cloudy water.

It should say on the package what the product is you are shocking with.
 

nocaster

Well-known member
May 18, 2007
53
Enid, Oklahoma
I have two returns that work as spa jets if I take out the "eyeball" fitting. There is a small pipe that is flush with my pool deck right behind the outlet. With the eye removed the flow of water will draw air down the small pipe and into the water flow. If I plug the return with my hand water will shoot out of the pipe like a geyser. My kid can't resist doing this.

You might want to check your well water for TA and Calcium Hardness. As you learn how to properly balance water, knowing these values will help you understand what factors are having an influence on your water balance. For example, my well water is very high in calcium so I avoid using Calcium Hypochorite to add chlorine since it will raise the CH even more.
 

KurtV

LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
270
SE Louisiana
reneec,
As Jason and Rangeball have told you, you need to get your pool properly chlorinated and THEN worry about alkalinity (if at all). High TA could be causing or contributing to your cloudiness but that's unlikely. Having no chlorine will, if it hasn't already, result in an algae filled and unsanitary pool.

Please go back and read JasonLion's post. It gives you pretty much all the information you need to solve this problem.
 

No P in my ool

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 21, 2007
219
Logan IA
I filled my pool with well water and my ta was 475. I kept my chlorine level up while lowering this and my pool has been crystal clear. My suggestion is put some bleach in your pool.