First TF100 Tests

jza1736

Silver Supporter
Apr 21, 2017
536
Greenlawn, NY
#42
I was exactly where you are almost a year ago. My pool was so easy using the TFP method. Then I got my spa and I thought a lot less water, it's going to be just as easy. Nope. Aggravated me every other day. Eventually I learned more and more and got the hang of it. There is light at the end of the tunnel.

After a drain and fill, takes me half a day to get everything balanced. But after that, I only add 2 tsp dry acid 1 or 2 times /month.
 

dunginhawk

Bronze Supporter
Jul 10, 2018
226
CLIVE/IA
#43
Just Aerate, .2 is not that bad.

What is the fc?
FC is still 9 ish. so its holding haha. which means at least right now there doesnt seem to be insane phantom FC loss like recently with me.

with regards to PH, aerate sure, that will get me back up, but isnt it a concern to be moving between 7.0 and 8.2 in the course of a day, randomly up and down? doesnt seem to be any rhyme or reason there.
 

jza1736

Silver Supporter
Apr 21, 2017
536
Greenlawn, NY
#44
I would bet it's your high(for spa) TA.

I ran that roller coaster too. Chasing PH down and TA up.

Now I get TA to 50 on fill and then adjust PH as needed. I just check it monthly to make sure it's not under 30. I pay little attention to it.
 

dunginhawk

Bronze Supporter
Jul 10, 2018
226
CLIVE/IA
#47
Tests as of 8:15pm tonight.

FC- 7.5
CC - .5
TA - 60
PH - 7.1
Salt - 2400
CYA - 30

compared to my tests last night , no bathers, just 2.5oz of bleach last night.

FC - 1
CC - 1
TA - 70
PH - 7.7
CYA - 50
Salt - 2400ppm

obviously the biggest difference is the CYA - but perhaps its been 30/40 for a while and my eyes just saw it better... Its so dang subjective that test.
FC is obviously much higher. I think i added chlorine last night and logged it trying to get it to 6. well it was 9 this morning and the better part of the day, so perhaps the SWG is working now, which would be good.
TA is fairly close, a bit lower tonight (havent aerated the water in a day essentially since turning off aeration). Salt is dead on again.

So overall, lots of little changes (the PH still makes me wonder) but nothing thats causing massive clouding, or smells etc. Its just a LOT LOT LOT of work to maintain. Its going to cost me 100$ in tf100 reagents per month at this rate.

My hope is that perhaps I can turn on the aeration slightly tonight after my soak which will aerate for 8 hours over the next 3/4 day. Thus raising the PH to 7.5/7.6.
A guy can hope anyway.

I know I sound whiney, but this is pretty fun to try to figure out. Its also frustrating as heck. At some point I def need to get in a routine.
 

jza1736

Silver Supporter
Apr 21, 2017
536
Greenlawn, NY
#48
Not bad

Don't worry about the PH. It's very close. I'm sure it will rise. Keep checking it when you check FC.

Your FC is in range, but keep an eye on it.

Your CYA lost 20. That's a lot to lose? Are you sure about this measurement? It's a tough test to read.

That will lower your FC range.
 

dunginhawk

Bronze Supporter
Jul 10, 2018
226
CLIVE/IA
#49
No im not 100% sure about it. That test is pretty subjective. Ill go run it again to be sure. Is CYA one of those things that can dissipate or move around? it shouldnt right?

edit: closer to 40... so its still a drop, but not as bad. do wonder why its lowering.
 

jseyfert3

Well-known member
Oct 20, 2017
222
Roscoe, IL
#53
Hmm. Are you reading from your pH meter? If so, is suspect that. Your pH should not be able to drop on its own unless you add something acidic (dichlor, acid). I'd verify against the Taylor pH test.
 

dunginhawk

Bronze Supporter
Jul 10, 2018
226
CLIVE/IA
#54
I am using the meter. I can test 10 times in 10 minutes and get the same reading, so I feel like its right... might need a calibration to which the instructions are horrible on that haha :) although im watching youtube vids on it :)
I added quite a bit of acid yesterday actually because my ph was up to 8.2
First added .1oz, then shortly after added .5oz. and because my TA was still too high I wanted to drop the PH down to 7-7.2 so I added an additional 2 oz later. So the drop isnt unexpected from that standpoint.
My guess is the reason its remained low is because I have had no aeration on it for over a day now. My 8 hours of filter time per day ran with no aeration today, because I think 8 hours WITH aeration the previous day is what spiked it to 8.2.

SOOO i think half open aeration after tonights soak may be the way to go to get it to stabilize around 7.6 :)
 

dunginhawk

Bronze Supporter
Jul 10, 2018
226
CLIVE/IA
#55
Ok, so just took about a 40 minute soak and tested afterwards.
FC - 5.5 (so I am to deduce that my arse must be unclean and I eat up 2ppm chlorine in about 40 minutes haha)
CC - .5
PH - 7.4 - so aerating it during most of that time raised it up. I turned on the aerator jets 1/4 on so just to barely aerate. This should hopefully maintain or slightly elevate the PH. Next time I get in tomorrow night im hoping to see some stable numbers.

Hoping also to see a 5.5 on FC or slightly above, which would indicate my SWG is actually doing something.

I havent gotten an answer to a question about Chlorine though. So it was 5.5 immediately after getting out. Has it pretty much taken care of the bacteria by now? or could that 5.5 FC drop to 4 by morning continuing to use it up?
thanks
 

jseyfert3

Well-known member
Oct 20, 2017
222
Roscoe, IL
#56
I am using the meter. I can test 10 times in 10 minutes and get the same reading, so I feel like its right... might need a calibration to which the instructions are horrible on that haha :smile: although im watching youtube vids on it :smile:
I added quite a bit of acid yesterday actually because my ph was up to 8.2
First added .1oz, then shortly after added .5oz. and because my TA was still too high I wanted to drop the PH down to 7-7.2 so I added an additional 2 oz later. So the drop isnt unexpected from that standpoint.
My guess is the reason its remained low is because I have had no aeration on it for over a day now. My 8 hours of filter time per day ran with no aeration today, because I think 8 hours WITH aeration the previous day is what spiked it to 8.2.

SOOO i think half open aeration after tonights soak may be the way to go to get it to stabilize around 7.6 :smile:
Ah, acid makes sense. I didn't see you added any. The pH will not really rise without aeration, or it will but very, very slow.

To answer your previous question about how long it takes aeration to raise pH, for me it was about 1/2 hour of aeration to get full pH rise. By full, I mean my Taylor test, which maxes out at 8, was maxed out. My inflatable tub really kicks out the bubbles though, huge, large numbers of bubbles. I'm not sure what a "real" hot tub will take. But will full aeration, I'm guessing it'll be around this 1/2 hour mark to go from 7.0 to 8.0.

I'm going to outline my entire TA/pH balance process. I've got this down to the point I can do it in a few hours now and the pH will be rock solid from then out, except when I add dichlor to start or maintain my CYA level (dichlor is acidic and will drop the pH). My water comes out of the tap at a TA/pH of 250/7.4. I'll aerate (each time I say this it means for 30 minutes) and the pH will be 8+ at the end. I'll add acid to target a pH of 7 with a current pH of 8 based on PoolMath and immediately aerate. I don't measure the low pH, because I don't care. After aeration I measure TA/pH. Might now be 210/8+. I add same amount of acid as before, aerate, measure. May be at 170/8+. Add acid, aerate, test. 130/8+. Almost to 100, so I do it once more. Acid, aerate, test. 90/8+. Now that I broke 100 I slow down! I've overshot (well, undershot is the more accurate term) a few times by jumping the gun at this point, so I now use the ~100 ppm TA mark as my slow down sign!

I switch gears having crossed the 100 ppm TA mark. I now target a pH of 7.4 when I add acid. Aerate, test, acid as before, but only test pH. Ignore the TA. With just a couple cycles at this point eventually when you test pH after your 30 minute aeration session you'll find it's no longer 8+, but somewhere between 7.4-7.8. If so, you can leave it here. Run one more aeration cycle and depending how close you were to the 7.8 mark, you may or may not have to add just a tad of acid. If you are at 7.9-8.0 (instead of 8+) target 7.5-7.6 on PoolMath instead of 7.4. Once you get the pH stable take a TA test for reference.

That's it! Balanced water! I'd check the pH every day the next two days, then maybe every other day for a week, after that feel free to test once a week if your tests show it being solid. Just don't do what I did! My pH got below 7 once cause I stabilized it at 7.4, it never budged, so eventually I pretty much stopped testing pH. I was reminded by a post here that dichlor is acidic, and checked my pH. As I had added some to bring my CYA back up to 30, my pH had dropped below 7 (low end of the Taylor kit). I brought it back up with washing soda (homemade, baking soda and aeration does the exact same thing). Now I check the pH after adding dichlor, or about once a week if no dichlor just so I don't forget to check it. The PoolMath phone app I just started using is great for this because you see how many days since you did a particular test.


So overall, lots of little changes (the PH still makes me wonder) but nothing thats causing massive clouding, or smells etc. Its just a LOT LOT LOT of work to maintain. Its going to cost me 100$ in tf100 reagents per month at this rate..
Hopefully my post helps you with pH. As to the work, it gets easier. For me, after three fills (so far), I test FC/CC/pH/TA/CH on a new fill. I'll do a bunch of pH/TA tests (7ish) to balance the water, a few more pH tests when I add borates since I use borax and acid, then a TA measurement when everything is balanced. Now I pretty much don't ever care about CH or TA again. Now it's FC, at least once before use, maybe a few hours after. Definitely the next day (as it seems to take 8-12 hours to really oxidize all the waste off). If the spa hasn't been used for a day or two, I may go every other or every third day testing. I typically only check CC once a week or so, or if it starts smelling "like chlorine" (10 ppm of FC and 0 CC has NO smell, but 1 ppm of CC and kick on the aeration and you can tell!). pH as I mentioned before typically only weekly, or if I add dichlor. CYA twice every 3-4 weeks, once to check level, then to verify new level after adding CYA.

To summarize that, it boils down to FC every day (or two, depending on use and test history), CC once or twice a week, pH once a week, CYA every 3 weeks. TA/CH really aren't needed to be tested in a fiberglass spa after initial balance. Really you'll run out of DPD powder and the reagent way before anything else, but you can buy those separately. You'll end up throwing out the TA/CH/pH bottles with them almost full because they expired! (well, until you get that pool, that is...)
 

dunginhawk

Bronze Supporter
Jul 10, 2018
226
CLIVE/IA
#57
Jseyfert3. thank you for that great info :) very helpful ..
So I woke up this morning and tested a few things again.

PH - 7.4 (so its well within range. another 4 hour cycle is running now, so Ill test it after that to see what effect that has (slight aeration).
FC - 4 (so before getting in last night it was 7.5, after 40 minutes or so in the tub (solo) it was 5.5. Wake up this morning to 4. Everything ive read says that seems like a stiff drop. Especially after the pumps ran (and swg, supposedly) for 4 hours after.
CC - .5
TA - 50
CYA - 40
 

jza1736

Silver Supporter
Apr 21, 2017
536
Greenlawn, NY
#58
Your fc is within range, so that good. If you can test it about an hour after the SWG shuts off. If it is still at the low end of your range, dose it up to the high end of your range. Keep monitoring it. Maybe you need a bigger dose of chlorine after you soak or maybe you need to run the SWG longer. This is what you are figuring out. It's a slow process, but once you have it, you will know your tub
 

dunginhawk

Bronze Supporter
Jul 10, 2018
226
CLIVE/IA
#59
I didnt put any chlorine in after my soak last night. but does it seem normal to have dropped 3.5ppm from 1 guy, for 40 minutes of soak time? I run the SWG 8 hours a day now, well if its in fact working, which im hoping to get someone to come take a look at it.
 

jza1736

Silver Supporter
Apr 21, 2017
536
Greenlawn, NY
#60
Your SWG is there to maintain the level. When you are in the spa, your introducing organics that will use up the FC. I always give a teaspoon or 2 of shock after a soak. It becomes habit. I bring it out with me b4 and dose it as soon as I get out. Than I leave the cover open for 20-30 minutes for it to offgas.