Cloudy water- new pool owner

SarahP

Member
May 19, 2022
11
Piqua, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
HELP ... New pool owner still learning. I've studied the TFP site. I ordered the Taylor 2006c test kit. Test results are below. Pool was opened on 4/27 and was very green/brown. It turned blue rather quickly but is still super cloudy. I cannot see the main drain at the bottom. Up until now I have been taking samples to the pool store and following their advice. They always say my test shows all levels are good and to just keep monitoring chlorine and brushing/vacuuming. Saying "it will come around " My last trip to pool store 5/14 they had me add 6 lbs of stabilizer, instructed not backwash for 7 days. Also to treat with Pool First Aid every other day. I did the Pool First Aid twice this week as that was the amount of applications in the bottle. We have ran the dolphin 1-3x per day at least since then. It's been weeks and no change in the cloudiness. I'm at a loss.

22,000 gal, sand filter running 24/7, in line chlorinator.

FC - 5.2
CC - .2
PH - 7.4
TA - 110 ppm
CH - 270
CYA - 45 ppm

Send help 😭
 

YippeeSkippy

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Jan 17, 2012
19,504
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Sarah.... welcome. I'm glad you found us, and sorry you ever walked in to that Pool Store! Their advice stinks. I've messaged a TFP chemist guru about the Pool First AId to find out what chemical that really is (not just "1,3,5-Triazine-1,3,5-triethanol " ) as some pool chems cause a lot of trouble actually.

Are those test results from your own test kit or the pool store? Was this before or after you added 6 pounds of CYA?
If it is after, your CYA result is "read" as 50ppm because its a logarithmic scale (confusing, huh?).
Soooo if your CYA is 50, you need to be bringing your pool up to a FC level of 20, and keeping it there with frequent tests and redoses of liquid chlorine as needed. PoolMath

Until you do that you're going to limp along with living & dead algae in the water.

Do you understand the SLAM process? SLAM Process If not please ask us questions. We want to help you do this in the most cost effective, efficient way. Pool Stores just want to sell you stuff.

I also need you to please go to <Settings> and fill out a <Signature Line> detailing info about your pool, its equipment, how you test and how you normally chlorinate? This helps us a lot. Thanks.

Looking for your response!
Maddie :flower:
 

YippeeSkippy

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SarahP

Member
May 19, 2022
11
Piqua, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
The results I posted are from the Taylor test kit I used today (5/19 )for the first time so I'm hoping I did it correctly. I will try to attach a photo from my readings from the pool store which was on 5/14. I then added the 6 lbs of stabilizer and Pool First Aid. It has been 5 days and no change. I have found info on the SLAM process and am still confused on it. It says to do the SLAM process until CC is lower then .5. I am currently at .2 so do I still do it?
I am also confused that you say I need to bring FC to 20. The chlorine/CYA chart shows target is 6-8 with a CYA of 50. Or is that just the typical range and we need to go above that to 20 to SLAM it?
So I need to raise FC to 20 for how long? And to do this I assume I need to use the pool math and input my current CYA and target FC of 20, right? This gives me 4 gals of shock. This is all so confusing, bear with me😁
 

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YippeeSkippy

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Ok, great... lets figure this out step by step-
I am currently at .2 so do I still do it?
Use only 10cc pool water when testing FC/CC. Then each drop of reagent will be 0.5. Translated fast that means if you count 14 drops you just divide by 2 and you get a FC of 7. Cool, huh? Also saves reagents so they last longer.
0.2 is a negligible amount of CC- might as well be zero!

am also confused that you say I need to bring FC to 20. The chlorine/CYA chart shows target is 6-8 with a CYA of 50. Or is that just the typical range and we need to go above that to 20 to SLAM it?
The FC/CYA chart has 3 sections, hard to see unless you know, but when you highlight the words "Liquid Chlorine" or "Salt Water" or "SLAM" it will show the levels needed depending on if you're just regularly chlorinating with liquid chlorine, or using a SWG or need to SLAM. FC/CYA Chart
For 50ppm CYA SLAM level the FC needs to be 20, to kill the new algae that is reproducing fast. You keep it at that level until the pool is crystal clear, your CC are <0.5 and you finally perform an Overnight Chlorine Loss Test to confirm all is dead in the water.

Walmart pool essentials liquid chlorine may be your best bet.... shop around. Lowes, HD and others also carry.

Maddie :flower:
 

YippeeSkippy

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Jan 17, 2012
19,504
Evans, Georgia
ALSO....,heard back from the chemistry guru- he says don't waste you money on that Pool FIrst Aid. The ingredient is a very weak version of that chemical which also can eat up your chlorine.

Please don't use it again.

Maddie :flower:
 

SarahP

Member
May 19, 2022
11
Piqua, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Ok, great... lets figure this out step by step-

Use only 10cc pool water when testing FC/CC. Then each drop of reagent will be 0.5. Translated fast that means if you count 14 drops you just divide by 2 and you get a FC of 7. Cool, huh? Also saves reagents so they last longer.
0.2 is a negligible amount of CC- might as well be zero!


The FC/CYA chart has 3 sections, hard to see unless you know, but when you highlight the words "Liquid Chlorine" or "Salt Water" or "SLAM" it will show the levels needed depending on if you're just regularly chlorinating with liquid chlorine, or using a SWG or need to SLAM. FC/CYA Chart
For 50ppm CYA SLAM level the FC needs to be 20, to kill the new algae that is reproducing fast. You keep it at that level until the pool is crystal clear, your CC are <0.5 and you finally perform an Overnight Chlorine Loss Test to confirm all is dead in the water.

Walmart pool essentials liquid chlorine may be your best bet.... shop around. Lowes, HD and others also carry.

Maddie :flower:
Thank you so much for the quick response ! I will get started tomorrow and will likely be back with questions😊 Thanks again!
 
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SarahP

Member
May 19, 2022
11
Piqua, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
A couple of questions. See attached photo. Is this good for the SLAM process? And when I log into Pool Math do I log it as Bleach at 12.5%?
Last night I put 4 gal in and the FC is just now dropping at almost 8:00PM the following day to 19. So I assume I need to use Pool Math which at the values I stated has me adding 20 oz now to maintain 20. Or should I go just a bit over 20 so it doesnt fall throughout the night? I hope I'm making sense 😊
 

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YippeeSkippy

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Yup...that stuff is good. Check the production dates. They usually read something like 2022150 (or 22150) meaning the 150th day of 2022. You want ideally stuff no older than 3 months.

Test then using PoolMath to tell you how much to add again, then as soon as an hour later but *at least 3x per day* retest and redose.... and so on.

Keep at it till the pool is clear. Brush daily.
 

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SarahP

Member
May 19, 2022
11
Piqua, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
That's the right stuff. Were you able to test and replenish chlorine during the day today?
Yes I've test 3-4x daily and added to maintain 20FC. Yesterday and today I've noticed it is much clearer, though I'm not sure it's clear enough. But I'm starting to worry because I'm being told I'm going to ruin the vinyl liner and bleach it out. Is this true?
I still see a lot of small dark particles that stick to the bottom and when I brush it just seems to turn to powder and settle back on the floor. It returns after brushing and vacuuming. There isn't as much as there used to be however. This morning before work at 630am I replenished chlorine to 20. It's a sunny day here and here are my results at 4pm
TC 14
CC .5
PH 7.6
CYA 40
TA 120
CH 250
Should I continue and bring this back up to 20 FC? I'm freaking out about the liner🙄
I have also ordered skimmer socks hoping that will help. And was debating putting DE in the skimmer to help filter. Is that okay with a sand filter?
I'm not sure I mentioned that I believe I'm having such a hard time because the pool was closed dirty last fall by the previous owners. Also, my lovely neighbors have 3 trees that hang around my pool. See pictures.
 

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SarahP

Member
May 19, 2022
11
Piqua, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Yup...that stuff is good. Check the production dates. They usually read something like 2022150 (or 22150) meaning the 150th day of 2022. You want ideally stuff no older than 3 months.

Test then using PoolMath to tell you how much to add again, then as soon as an hour later but *at least 3x per day* retest and redose.... and so on.

Keep at it till the pool is clear. Brush daily.
Yes I've test 3-4x daily and added to maintain 20FC. Yesterday and today I've noticed it is much clearer, though I'm not sure it's clear enough. But I'm starting to worry because I'm being told I'm going to ruin the vinyl liner and bleach it out. Is this true?
I still see a lot of small dark particles that stick to the bottom and when I brush it just seems to turn to powder and settle back on the floor. It returns after brushing and vacuuming. There isn't as much as there used to be however. This morning before work at 630am I replenished chlorine to 20. It's a sunny day here and here are my results at 4pm
TC 14
CC .5
PH 7.6
CYA 40
TA 120
CH 250
Should I continue and bring this back up to 20 FC? I'm freaking out about the liner🙄
I have also ordered skimmer socks hoping that will help. And was debating putting DE in the skimmer to help filter. Is that okay with a sand filter?
I'm not sure I mentioned that I believe I'm having such a hard time because the pool was closed dirty last fall by the previous owners. Also, my lovely neighbors have 3 trees that hang around my pool. See pictures.
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
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Jan 17, 2012
19,504
Evans, Georgia
You can rest easily now..... The CYA in the water is what buffers the FC and makes it so higher chlorine levels are safe and will not bleach a liner.

A pool with 1ppm and NO CYA is stronger/more harsh than a pool with 30 CYA and 10ppm FC.
Use the FC/CYA Chart so that you know your keeping the CYA and FC balanced against each other.

Stop listening to pool stores. They lie. :sneaky:
 
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IceShadow

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Jun 8, 2019
4,184
Milwaukee, WI
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Keep in mind that it will take days or even a week or two to clear a cloudy pool with a sand filter. There are a couple of things you can do to speed it along.

First I would recommend trying a deep clean of the sand filter: Deep Cleaning a Sand Filter

You can add DE to a sand filter as you mentioned. Here's the info on it: Add DE to a Sand Filter . You can try that, but you'll have to watch filter pressure carefully as if it starts to catch more of the dirt in a cloudy pool, it will go up QUICKLY.

Either way, only backwash when you get 25% over your PSI when it was just backwashed last. Sand filters actually filter a little better when they have some crud caught in the sand to help catch smaller particulate.
 
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SarahP

Member
May 19, 2022
11
Piqua, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Keep in mind that it will take days or even a week or two to clear a cloudy pool with a sand filter. There are a couple of things you can do to speed it along.

First I would recommend trying a deep clean of the sand filter: Deep Cleaning a Sand Filter

You can add DE to a sand filter as you mentioned. Here's the info on it: Add DE to a Sand Filter . You can try that, but you'll have to watch filter pressure carefully as if it starts to catch more of the dirt in a cloudy pool, it will go up QUICKLY.

Either way, only backwash when you get 25% over your PSI when it was just backwashed last. Sand filters actually filter a little better when they have some crud caught in the sand to help catch smaller particulate.
So do I test CYA often during this process? When I started Saturday it was at 50, so I maintained 20FC. Today I tested CYA and its 40, is that reliable and I should now maintain a lower FC based on the new CYA? Or should I stick with my initial CYA of 50?
How do I know when it's clear enough. I can see the main drain in the deep end now. But it just looks like a dark spot. I guess I'm second guessing myself on when to know I'm done. There really isn't any way to measure cloudiness right?
 

IceShadow

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Jun 8, 2019
4,184
Milwaukee, WI
Pool Size
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Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
If the new test is 40, you can lower the FC target to 16. CYA shouldn't change much, unless you're adding more of it to raise it or removing water, but if you're backwashing a bunch and refilling, you could be losing CYA from that. It does degrade a bit over time too but we're talking under 10ppm per month, likely more like 3-5ppm per month.

If it's not crystal clear, it's not done. You should be able to tell if the screws on the main drain in the deep end have phillips or flathead screws when it is clear, or tell if a quarter in the deep end is heads or tails up. See this thread:

 
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SarahP

Member
May 19, 2022
11
Piqua, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
If the new test is 40, you can lower the FC target to 16. CYA shouldn't change much, unless you're adding more of it to raise it or removing water, but if you're backwashing a bunch and refilling, you could be losing CYA from that. It does degrade a bit over time too but we're talking under 10ppm per month, likely more like 3-5ppm per month.

If it's not crystal clear, it's not done. You should be able to tell if the screws on the main drain in the deep end have phillips or flathead screws when it is clear, or tell if a quarter in the deep end is heads or tails up. See this thread:

Thank you! That was very helpful! Yep, I still have a long way to go LOL
 

SarahP

Member
May 19, 2022
11
Piqua, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
CYA does degrade slowly, but also it takes time to get jiggy with it. Do it a couple times till you get comfy with the results.

Sunny day, vial held waist high, only glance for dot don't go staring for it.
Welllll I might have been staring super hard. Sheesh. I'll do it again and just glance. Haha. Thank you!
 

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