First time pool owner, ?s about startup and chemicals

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
4,420
NY
:) The kids love “science”
Testing is science class
Splashing and fun times is science lab
Retesting is viewing/plotting results back in class again.

jeez, Not that you mention it, We can go all out school.

Math : Oscar dove 12 times .... Jane 3 times
English : To cannonball or not to cannonball
*THAT* is the question
Gym : Swimming (self explanatory)
Home Ec: Go make snacks. Mmmmm snacks
 

splashpad

Bronze Supporter
Aug 2, 2017
2,708
SE Kansas!
I think my pump is way overboard for what I need for this pool, vortex in the skimmer for a while, raised the water level to 3/4 up on the skimmer, now very little vortex but the skimmer door stays flat and the water is moving pretty fast around the pool. I'm also getting somewhat of a vortex at the return (Aqualuminator) re: the water dips a bit at that location. I guess these aren't bad things but most likely a huge waste of electricity...thats what I get for going with what the pool store recommended before finding this site.
Can the store exchange the pump for lesser horsepower? It may have been the only one they had in-stock, I know this has been a "demand-heavy" season... Definitely be sure to keep the pool full, you don't want too much air getting into the pump/filter system. I don't have cartridge filter experience, but here are the cleaning/maintenance instructions Maintenance and Cleaning of Pool Filters - Trouble Free Pool
Here are some helpful quick links ~ Pool Care Basics Archives - Trouble Free Pool ~ What Are My Ideal Pool Levels? - Trouble Free Pool

pH = 7.2
TA = 50
Should I still ignore pH and let it come up on its own or add some Sodium Carbonate to slowly bring it up to a target of 7.6? Also, should I worry about bringing TA up a bit?
  • Let the PH rise on it's own (splashing will raise PH) :)
  • You may find you need to add a little more TA, to maintain a steady PH (vinyl does not hold up well with PH under 7 (it weakens it))
    • and by little, only target small increases (I would go by 10's, but that is my personal thought), so you aren't chasing levels like a yo-yo (chasing is fun at first, until it isn't) ;)
    • Hence the suggestion from Duraleigh, earlier in this thread, to test often (daily). It helps you "learn YOUR pool", every pool is unique in it's overall use & needs, but the basics are the same!
  • I would keep the return pointed at the floor, if you can redirect it, to help prevent the vortex. We love our "lazy river", but each pool family is unique! :D
 

vdubin71

Bronze Supporter
May 11, 2020
25
Long Island, NY
Thanks for the motivation and advice everyone. Hey Newdude, I like you "school" examples :)

Today is the third day and here are my test results:

FC = 2.5
CC = .5
pH = 6.8
TA = 50
CYA = 30

So, CYA is where I want it per the guidance here. I will add LC to get FC up to 5.

For the pH, the kids splashed around in the pool all day but it went down from 7.2 yesterday. Should I still just leave it and let is rise on its own? I'm worried about the comment above about the liner not liking pH below 7.

If I should raise it, I have Sodium Charbonate (the pool store's "pH UP" product) which I found is the same as soda ash. Pool Math says to add 18oz to get pH to 7.2. Should I do that or just have the kids splash around again tomorrow? Sorry to be so hung up on the pH topic...

Thank you
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
4,420
NY
So being right on the fence you'll probably find the consensus split as to how to procede. The liner doesnt like the low PH but one night won't matter, all winter..... yeah. But you have the soda ash on hand and are gung-ho to adjust what needs adjusting so i say have fun. The added bonus is it will raise your TA a bit too, which was also on the lower side as discussed earlier.
 
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splashpad

Bronze Supporter
Aug 2, 2017
2,708
SE Kansas!
For the pH, the kids splashed around in the pool all day but it went down from 7.2 yesterday. Should I still just leave it and let is rise on its own? I'm worried about the comment above about the liner not liking pH below 7.
If I should raise it, I have Sodium Charbonate (the pool store's "pH UP" product) which I found is the same as soda ash. Pool Math says to add 18oz to get pH to 7.2. Should I do that or just have the kids splash around again tomorrow? Sorry to be so hung up on the pH topic...
Which takes a lesser amount, raising to 7.2 or raising from TA 50 to 60 with Soda ash? Either way, I would add half the dose :)
As shared above, it does take some time at low PH to cause damage, so it's good to know your pool's water tendencies!
 
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vdubin71

Bronze Supporter
May 11, 2020
25
Long Island, NY
Hi,

First, a big thank you to everyone here. All of the advice has been spot on and testing and adding chemicals has been very straightforward and easy. The PoolMath app is great too, thanks to those who developed it.

I have been testing all items every day and these were the results of yesterdays test:
FC = 2.5
CC = .0
pH = 7.2
TA = 70
CYA = 30

CYA, TA and pH have been those same numbers for the last 5 days. For CYA and TA, can I call them "consistent" and start only testing them weekly instead of daily? Asking as I am a little more than half way through my R-0013 and want to know when I transition to one set of things tested weekly and a smaller set for daily testing.

For the daily testing, the TF-100 kit says to just use the CL and pH test but I thought I should also do the FC and CC test daily. What are you all doing?

Thanks
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
32,538
Laughlin, NV
Test CYA monthly. TA weekly or when you need to add acid, whichever comes first.

Once you know your pool, you can use the FAS-DPD every other or third day. Calibrate the OTO (yellow) TC test versus your FAS-DPD for a few times and then you can use that when needed.
 

vdubin71

Bronze Supporter
May 11, 2020
25
Long Island, NY
Thanks Marty.

CYA monthly and TA weekly, got it!

Did my first "Daily" round of testing today and got:

FC = 5
CC = .5
pH = 7.2

So nothing for me to add today, yay! ...probably because nobody went in the pool today. It was cloudy all day and rained for a couple hours with the solar cover on since last night. I just took the cover off to let the pool breathe a bit before putting it back on later for the night.

Thanks again.
 
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