Frustrated by lack of knowledge

MightyMike

Member
Aug 19, 2016
8
EDISON/NJ
Good people...im a newbie in my first full summer as a pool owner. Live in NJ and Aug 2016 renovated back yard with new fence, gates, tree pruning, and
....an above ground pool. Was professionally dug, leveled, installed. Had a great few weeks then closed for winter. Opened nicely in spring, water barely even cloudy. Followed instructions on start up kit with chemicals provided. Had no clue there was any correlation btwn CYA and chlorine or BBB method. Now have a giant tub of 3"tabs and bags of shock. Was fairly diligent about weekly brushing and shocking and backwashing no matter what. Would have water tested at pool store, used aquacheck strips and taylor kit. Felt good to see i was always in the range of everything except FC and CC. Then one week phospahates were 1450 and ph was 7.9 Added phosphate remover and dry acid down and things went down from there. Water went milky, then soft green started on walls and floor and water started looking bluish green and ladder steps a dull yellow. So i turned off chlorinator, flocced, vacuumed to waste, refilled, brushed, flocced again, repeat. Have since bounced back to clear water but chlorine odor is prominent. Filter runs 24/7 now and chlorinator still off. Chlorinator dial has off, 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and full. Had always kept it on full, not knowing how much CYA was being added. Now that i have all these tabs, can i just use them in the chlorinator to keep up sanitization? What setting should my chlorinator be on? Can i swim now if CYA is around 70 even though FC is not below 5 like pool store insists it needs to be?
 

woodyp

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 17, 2010
11,089
East Texas
everything except FC and CC
<<<<There's your problem even if everything else is perfect. CYA at 70 is on the edge of high range. More pucks will only increase that. Time to go to liquid bleach. Pool stores do not understand or will admit to the CYA/FC relationship. Below 5 is INCORRECT for you! See this chart....[FC/CYA][/FC/CYA] Welcome. If chlorine odor is prominent, it is caused by high CC levels and you need to SLAM your pool. Also, we recommend you quit wasting your money on any phosphate removers.. With no algae it doesn't matter how much they have to eat!
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
34,722
Laughlin, NV
CYA does not LEAVE your water in a significant way unless you drain water out. It stays there and builds up as you use the solid chlorine eg pucks.

You want a certain amount of CYA, no more than 50 in a normally chlorinated pool and no more than 80 in a SWCG chlorinated pool.

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Yes - you will need to add bleach/chlorine daily during swim season unless you get a SWCG.
 

dsmith99

Silver Supporter
Jun 18, 2016
238
SW, Iowa
So how does CYA get in water without pucks? Am i pouring in bleach everyday in a stable parameter pool?
CYA can be added separately, it is available as liquid or granular the latter being the cheapest. It is dissolved by pouring it into a sock and hanging that in front of the return jet. It is sold most often labeled as pool stabilizer. Unless you have a lot of rain or lose water due to splash out or a leak then stabilizer doesn't leave the water. You test your CYA level when the pool is opened, add if needed and then test a couple times over the summer to monitor the level, it doesn't change much. You can also use tablets or shock if you need to bump CYA but they are so acidic they can throw the pool out of balance, we usually reserve use for vacations.

Chlorine is a consumable, a clean pool will use around 2-4ppm each day, so it must be added back. It is easiest to simply test and dose the pool back to target range each day. Once you get a feel for the pool it can be as simple as just adding the normal dose and cleaning the skimmer and test 3-4 times per week to make sure you stay on track. The whole process takes about 5 minutes, you really only need to test FC, CC and PH regularly.

You need the right test kit, you don't say what your Taylor kit is, we rely on the K-2006 or the TF100 for our pools. I would throw the test strips in the trash, they are not worth your time, will not give you accurate readings and only confuse you. They offer only worthless wide ranges and that's if they even register correctly at all.

There are numerous ways you can automate the dosing process once you understand the how's and why's to correctly maintain the pool.

We need test results from the proper kit to offer sound advise, if your numbers are coming from strips or a pool store they are not trustworthy. A CYA of 70 is manageable but will require high FC levels to clean up the pool, if that number is truly accurate you'll be best off to do a 50% water change.
 

MightyMike

Member
Aug 19, 2016
8
EDISON/NJ
Thank you all for sharing your knowledge with me. Also, i have a 22 inch sand filter that was set up by the pool installer. I bought 250lbs of sand but he used 200lbs. Can anyone think of a reason why he wouldn't have used the other 50lbs? Should i make sure that gets added next spring?
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
15,185
Evans, Georgia
Mike, have you read any of the guides up there <points to the top of website> in Pool School?? You need to get a grasp on how we care for our pools which is entirely different from how Pool Stores will sell you up on how to "care for" your pool.

Pool School's first lesson is --> ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

Maddie :flower:
 

MightyMike

Member
Aug 19, 2016
8
EDISON/NJ
Thanks Dom. It came with universal sand filter instructions, not specific to my model and for 22 inch tank it says 220lbs and 26 inch says 360lbs. Mine is actually 23 inch.

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Thank you. Very happy i found this forum in my first yr. Im sure i will get better with all this valuable info.
 

domct203

Bronze Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 3, 2015
3,959
CT
I'm sure the 200lbs has been adequate, but my OCD would require me to add half the bag LOL.