First test in, seems balance is way off

daum

Active member
Aug 30, 2022
44
Massachusetts
Just moved into a new house and got the TFT pro kit last night and took results from the pool and spa this morning. Here is what I have (I believe):

Pool
  • PH - 7.5-7.6
  • CL - Off charts in block, 21 drops or 11.5 PPM in single test
  • CH - 14 drops - 350
  • TA - 9 drops - 90
  • CYA - > 100 - the dot disappeared before getting to any marks on the tube, maybe half way between bottom and 100?
SPA
  • PH - ~6.8 - My wife and I had differing opinions on this one.
  • CL - Off the charts, even in single test had over 40 drops and then stopped as it didn't seem to be changing
  • CH - Never went red
  • TA - Never went Green
Both the pool and spa are clear, but I think that is partially because the seller shocked the pool before we left (we think) and then we found chlorine pucks in the filters when we got here. Unfortunately they aren't very responsive/helpful at all.

Any suggestions on what I should do?

Thanks!
Daum
 

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Texas Splash

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Does the pool & spa share the same body of water? If so, were they running & mixing well together for at least 30 minutes before you took the tests? As for the CYA, well, that's a bummer. Much too high and probably well over 100 based on previous owner's pool care. How long before you close?
 
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daum

Active member
Aug 30, 2022
44
Massachusetts
Does the pool & spa share the same body of water? If so, were they running & mixing well together for at least 30 minutes before you took the tests? As for the CYA, well, that's a bummer. Much too high and probably well over 100 based on previous owner's pool care. How long before you close?
Nope they are separate systems. I'd say less than a month until closing, pool is unheated and already a bit chilly for kids, hot tub the heater isn't currently working (have someone coming to look at it next Saturday), but less than a month likely until we fully close.
 

Mdragger88

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Also, do the diluted cya test for the pool to get a better idea of the cya since it’s over 90ppm
Step 8👇
 

Mdragger88

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Sorry CYA Spa was way higher than even the pool, will try the diluted version tonight/tomorrow morning as I have to run out right now unfortuantely.

Thanks for the pointer on that!
Daum
Then its Time to purge the spa with Ahhsome & start fresh,
use this guide 👇
 

daum

Active member
Aug 30, 2022
44
Massachusetts
Then its Time to purge the spa with Ahhsome & start fresh,
use this guide 👇
Thanks will look into getting that, the tub itself seems to be in good shape and isn't dirty just the balance is a bit off. Right now the heater on it also isn't working (have someone coming next weekend) so it's really just a small pool at the moment.

We aren't able to drain/refill right now due to water restrictions too, to lower the CYA. Is there something I can do just to get us through the next month before closing? On the pool side the levels of everything but the CYA and chlorine seem to be either slightly high or in the right spot? But on the spa chemistry seems way off.
 

Mdragger88

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You need to replace the water in the spa - cya of 100+ is not maintainable -
The ph test is inaccurate at fc levels above 10ppm, ph must be controlled in the spa to protect the heater, equipment, & finish so you can see how this doesn’t play well together with the FC/CYA Chart.
Draining it by 1/2 is roughly the equivalent of 7 baths & may get you to a more reasonable cya level.
Is it covered?
Do you plan to use the spa in the winter?

For both the pool & the spa doing the diluted cya test is necessary so you know how much water to exchange along with being able to know you’re maintaining adequate fc levels of at least 7.5% of your cya until you can get cya under control.

For now you can try cutting your ph sample 50/50 with distilled water as mentioned here👇

For the ta test you said it never turned green, did it turn red?
 

Bperry

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Thanks will look into getting that, the tub itself seems to be in good shape and isn't dirty just the balance is a bit off. Right now the heater on it also isn't working (have someone coming next weekend) so it's really just a small pool at the moment.

We aren't able to drain/refill right now due to water restrictions too, to lower the CYA. Is there something I can do just to get us through the next month before closing? On the pool side the levels of everything but the CYA and chlorine seem to be either slightly high or in the right spot? But on the spa chemistry seems way off.
Are using the FAS-DPD or the OTO test for the chlorine level? Don’t bother with the yellow OTO test as it’s not as accurate as the FAS-DPD (powder and drops to make it pink). Given your very high CYA, the chlorine level may be just fine.

The CYA level is the only thing obviously a problem with those test results so far.
 
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wireform

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The guidance above is what you need to follow and my opinion has it for the spa if your chemistry is so off then the water is unsafe from a sanitary point too. If they haven't cared enough you have no idea what lingers in the spa plumbing. You need to purge as per above advice and start it all over. Winter is coming down the pike and the spa can get badly damaged so make sure you get it taken care of and operational before otherwise you'll have to drain and winterize it well to be sure next season isn't a goose chase of problems related to winter temps and broken plumbing which can be next to impossible to repair at times.
 
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daum

Active member
Aug 30, 2022
44
Massachusetts
Thanks all, will get the diluted CYA test by tomorrow, I should just do that for the pool correct? It sounds like for the Spa, I really should be looking at half draining and refilling it and trying to get it in balance.

Sorry for the slow response, between trying to get more things moved from our old place to the new and kids activities haven't had a minute to do this.
Daum
 

daum

Active member
Aug 30, 2022
44
Massachusetts
Thanks will do. Also Mdragger88 realized I left a few questions unanswered regarding the Spa:
  • Is it covered? No, it's just an open one, and would only be heated when we're in going to use it
  • Do I plan to use it in the winter? Not this year, in the future it'd be nice but would need to spend a bit of time to think of how to keep it from freezing, as the spa is a good distance from the heater/filter. They are also not covered either. We also don't have a heavy cover for it, so would need to get that too. At this point just hoping to get the heater up and running and at least one use before we have to close.
 

Mdragger88

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Since it’s not covered it can be treated more like a pool in terms of cya since it gets full sun exposure. I would try to exchange at least 50% or more of the spa asap & see where that lands u cya wise. Then be sure to maintain fc at or above 7.5% of the cya level to keep it sanitary until closing. Also hopefully that would improve the ta/ph situation. They obviously have been chunking trichlor in & tanked the ta along with the ph. The low ph/ta will damage the finish & equipment if not corrected.
The same applies for the pool with the fc @ 7.5% of cya or higher.
If you will be draining some water for winterizing that will definitely help your cause further for both bodies of water.
Since you are dealing with water restrictions you may need to do many small exchanges to get the cya numbers reasonable which ironically uses more water in the end.
 

daum

Active member
Aug 30, 2022
44
Massachusetts
Alrighty the diluted CYA for the pool gave me a 140 CYA.

If this isn't a stand alone spa you will not be able to isolate it from the rest of the plumbing for winter unless that was in the original design which i've never seen to date on the east coast.
I think the plumbing may be completely separate. It has it's own pump, filter, heater, main drain vs skimmers, etc. but will also ask the pool person when they are here on Saturday looking at the heater.

Daum
 
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Mdragger88

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Ok- So for the pool you need to maintain fc of 10.5 ppm or higher at all times to prevent nasties until you can replace at least 50% of the water.
Next homework assignment:
Do an Overnight Chlorine Loss Test for the pool to be sure organics aren’t an issue that you need to deal with asap/before closing.
 

Mdragger88

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All set performed this last night, it passed it was 9.5 PPM both last night and this morning. PH is 7.6.
Great 👍🏻 get that fc up to at least 10.5ppm & keep it there so nothing grows while you figure out your next steps as far as water exchange to get cya under control goes. Slam level is fc is 56ppm for a cya of 140 so that’s not something you want to have to do if you can help it.
As mentioned above you can do the diluted ph test with distilled water if fc is much higher than 10ppm so you can continue to keep that in check.
 

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