CYA 0 every spring opening. Just a FYI. No friends from BBB


Active member
May 19, 2010
Central NJ
Been BBB since pool was new 2004. I always open to 0 CYA. Add 2 lbs or so to get to 30. Always read that CYA does not disappear but mine does. It must be possible because mine does. I only lower the level just below the skimmer.

Also this year more friends bought pools and have been inviting my kids over. I arrive and test their pool and explain about BBB. I give them the site and tell them to read and make their own conclusion. I told my wife there pools are not maintained and I don't want the kids in the pool. Then my kids over hear and say " my father says your pool is not clean and I cant go in"

How do I explain it to friends when they just don't get it. I am unemployed and just lost health insurance and do not need my kids sick.

Example: 1) friend asked me to test his water. His CYA is 120 and he does not keep his FC high enough. He got mad when I got some bleach and poured it in his pool. Hey my kid was swimming. his CL was only 2.

2) Another is using the frog minerals that the store talked him into. His cartridge filter clogged the first yr from it and they had since sold him a DE filter. From what I read about minerals on this site and the slow kill time or no kill of viruses I said absolutely not. You want to swim, swim in your own pool. heck you can probably drink the water in ours its so clean.

Summary: How does anyone else go about others with pools that are just plain scary. They look good but looks are deceiving.


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 8, 2007
Waaay NW MN
We only have control over our own pools. I provide the info to others and let them make their own decisions. Usually if you are sure to make the main focus the money savings people are more likely to listen. Gosh as far as allowing my kids to swim elsewhere, I like my pool super clean but I still swim at the lake - I try not to think too hard on it I guess


Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 14, 2010
Stephens City, VA
Because we have a pool it is rare that we or our daughter individually gets invited to other people's houses who have pools. I try to do the inviting of her friends and I just hope word gets out quickly that I'm pretty particular about my water. A few strategically placed photos on Facebook really helps too...

I only have control over my domain. I can't control other people. I can only give them the info when the natural flow of conversation gets to 'oh, do you use x or y in your pool?'

That said, it truly frightens me to get in a public pool around here or a hotel pool, but that's MY issue. I do the look and smell test. If I don't like what I see or smell, I don't get in. If it is green or I can't see the bottom, I forbid my daughter from going in and she's getting old enough that if I say its unsanitary, she understands. I've rarely forbidden her from getting in even if I don't get in. Showers immediately upon leaving another pool are absolutely required. At times on vacations I look at the 100s of kids in the pool and just get a cocktail or six, and try to not stress over it. :mrgreen: I do take test strips when I travel. While pretty inaccurate, they give enough info if you really KNOW there's a problem and need something to confirm it. If the PH is blood red, it's likely too high and if nothing shows up on the FC block yet I smell it, well, the answer is clear on that one... Plus having that strip in your hand gives a bit of air of 'I know what I'm talking about' when you bring it to the front desk. I have only threatened to call the health department at one hotel. Within 5 minutes the pool and spa (the major offender) were closed. We swam in the ocean that trip thank you..

Our knowledge somewhat takes the fun out of it, but we can't raise our kids in fear of every little thing. Educate them to look and smell and eventually they'll make their own choices.

And like NWMN said...put it in perspective of a lake...(I don't swim in lakes very often though...)

And if there's foamy stuff on a beach...nope. I'd rather jump off in 500 ft of water from the back of a boat.


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Feb 23, 2008
Denton, TX
Others with pools will either listen to you or they won't. When I am posed the question of why my pool looks so awesome, I'll explain it and give props to TFP! If I am at their house (sitting beside their pool) and I am asked for an opinion, I'll give it straight up. If I am not asked, then I won't offer anything and I'll be a gracious guest. My kids and I typically don't swim in other pools anyway since we have our own.

What I will say is me, your friends with pools know that your pool looks better than theirs. They are probably a little embarrassed by this as well and pride can make it tough for them to break down and admit that they need help with their situation. Sooner or later though, they will almost always get around to asking you how they can deal with their water. They'll come to you. That's when you can let the info flow. This has happened to me more than I can remember.


LifeTime Supporter
Jul 29, 2009
My experience had been opposite.

People would come over, and say things like: "Boy! The cost of chemicals these days... I'm going broke!"

To which I would reply: "Na... I just need to dump a little bleach in every day... maybe some acid, and I'm good".

To which they start imagining the mutant grandchildren they will have by letting their kids swim in my pool.

You see... THEY have a print out from the pool store. They view that print out as certification that (as long as they buy enough chemicals) their pool is safe to swim in.

So, to sell the BBB method, I decided that I would let the pool store sell it for me. Once a week or so, I take my water to them. Usually, they are like "This is pretty good... Just need to add some balance pak 100, and some pH up and add some algeacide to make sure everything stays good".

I'm like "Yea... right... sure... got some at home".

Last time, I am getting ready to do an assorbic acid treatment, so my waters a little off. I go into the pool store to get some algaecide and bring in my water.

The numbers that they got were something like:

FC: 1.6
TC: 1.6
pH: 7.6
TA: 165

I kid you not, the guy testing the water started to call over the other employees: "Look... we got our first perfect water of the season". Other employee is like: "HA! Yep... guess who's been helping him with the water for months. ME!"... "WOW... we NEVER see THAT!" People patting each other on the backs. I'm rolling my eyes.

Had they had any inkling as to how I actually maitained my water, I'd probably be banned from the store.


Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 14, 2010
Stephens City, VA
waskydiver said:
You see... THEY have a print out from the pool store. They view that print out as certification that (as long as they buy enough chemicals) their pool is safe to swim in.
I get that too sometimes. AFTER they look down their noses at know, cuz its kinda 'redneck' to use bleach ya know...and the popular people use the 'professional' stuff...

Do we have a 'what-EVAH' smilie????
I wish I lived in a large town where I could go in and mess with the pool store...and be

I went in to the Biogard dealer today looking for something and there was a lady in there waiting to be helped.
I was checking out their liquid chlorine jug...and made a comment..oh COOL they have 12.5% I wonder how much this is...the customer just looked at me and said..been there done THAT...what a mess...I only do what they tell me to do in here now.

Really....hmmmph..Ok. I guess that's why your shoes look about ten years old...cuz you can't AFFORD new ones...(I only thought that...I said, really, huh...this is all I use anymore." Got the price per case (too high) and walked out.
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