Help Making More Sense of My Results

NY Smokeater

Silver Supporter
Jul 25, 2018
41
Commack, NY
I've been doubting my ability to properly test my own pool and have been bringing my water to the pool store to back me up. Their results last week had me add about 2.5 pounds of UV protector (cyanuric acid) as the chlorine was low? I didn't get a chance to ask why as it was busy and I typically trust them since they are not a major chain.

Anyhow, tested my pool today.
Coleman
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Build Type: Vinyl
Volume: 7200 gallons (18'x48" round)
------------------------------------------
Latest Test Result Summary:
Clarity:. Mostly clear with very faint cloudiness
FC: 1.0 (an hour ago)
CC: 0.5 (an hour ago)
pH: 7.5 (an hour ago)
TA: 80 (an hour ago)
CH: 0 (an hour ago)
CYA: 50 (an hour ago)
SALT: 2800 (an hour ago)
==========================================
------------------------------------------
Notes 07-13-2020 @ 02:50 PM
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7/7/20: Added 1/3 of 8lb container UV Shield

Several thoughts to consider:
- I live in the northeast and get full sun on the pool
- I have a saltwater pool with sand filter and SWG and run the pump for 5 hours a day starting at roughly 8am (used to run it at night and changed it at the recommendation of the pool store)
- kids are in the pool 3-5 times a week
- I had to replace my pool vacuum. Before yesterday, it was about 1.5 months since it was cleaned. Yesterday as I was vacuuming, I noticed some cloudiness in the pool after stirring up some dirt
- My last backwash was Saturday 7/11

Questions:
- Is the time of day and amount of time running the filter alright?
- when mixing some of the drops, I don't see complete color changes with some of the drops (i.e. chlorine drop test - water is milky, after adding 2nd drops, am I counting for the brick red color change when the drop first hits and changes the color to brick red? It instantly goes back to milky. Just making sure I'm doing this correctly)
- CYA was tested and eyeballed twice. It was 50-60. I know this test takes some time to figure out but am I alright?
- water feels fine on the skin and no eye or skin irritation reported by kids

I've been back to reading the ABC's of Water Chemistry and wonder if I'm missing something here. Sorry for the basic question of what the heck do I need to do but I would like to start making better heads and tails of this. TIA
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
33,092
Laughlin, NV
The time of day you run the pump and SWCG does not really matter. At 5 hours, you are creating 1.3 ppm FC in your pool (use PoolMath). I would call that low. I would increase your pump/SWCG run time to 16+ hours and see if your FC holds better.
You need to add liquid chlorine now to get your FC into target range based on a 60 ppm CYA (round up from your statement of 50-60) as shown on FC/CYA Chart. I would suggest adding half a gallon of 10% bleach now.
Testing -- watch TF-100's YouTube Channel

Keep asking questions! Trust your own testing. Mixing pool store and TFP methods will not work -------
 
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Richard320

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 6, 2010
23,930
San Dimas, CA (LA County)
I see low FC for the CYA and cloudiness. They go hand-in-hand and they're seldom good news.

Get some chlorine in there now. Don't wait for the SWG. Run it up to SLAM level (20 for 50 CYA) and see if t clears. Or a little lower if people want to swim in it. But definitely get FC into double digits today.
 
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NY Smokeater

Silver Supporter
Jul 25, 2018
41
Commack, NY
Thank you folks, appreciate the responses. I always feel like I'm asking questions I should know the answers for but some things just don't click sometimes.

Got it on the chlorine. I will add it ASAP. Is household bleach acceptable?

What is the quick math used to determine how much chlorine/bleach needed? I'm not seeing how @mknauss, I'm not seeing how you arrived at 10%.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
33,092
Laughlin, NV
10% bleach is a product. Can be called Liquid Chlorine, Chlorinating Liquid, Liquid Shock, Pool Shock, etc. It can also be 12.5%.

Use PoolMath for how much to use.

As Richard said, it is probably best to go to SLAM level FC, or 20 ppm. That would be 1.5 gallons of 10%.
 
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NY Smokeater

Silver Supporter
Jul 25, 2018
41
Commack, NY
Thank you @mknauss

Should I add this while the filter is running?
Should this be spread around the pool or somewhere near the pool intake to circulate through the filter?
What is a safe timeframe to resume swimming after the bleach is added?
 
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NY Smokeater

Silver Supporter
Jul 25, 2018
41
Commack, NY
Update...

Minor setback. My wife nearly had a coronary when she saw what I was trying to put in the pool lol my kids have skin issues so the salt allows them to enjoy the pool. We have been lucky in not needing many chemicals except for the UV protection. When I explained our pool balance situation, she was very uneasy with the use of pool shock.

Is there a more natural way to raise the FC levels besides bleach? The only option I had at the pool store was the pool shock. Two stores didn't have the 10% bleach.
 

Homebrewale

Well-known member
Apr 21, 2020
296
Apex, NC
Look in your big box home maintenance stores. We have Home Depot and Lowes here and both carry bleach in their pool sections. You can use the bleach in the household cleaning products sections but I doubt you will find any bleach there due to Covid. Fortunately, it seems most people don't look in the pool section for bleach to use as a household cleaning product. You are not limited to 10% bleach when using PoolMath.
 
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PoolNewb2020

Well-known member
May 7, 2020
300
Lathrop, CA
No reason to be afraid of liquid chlorine. If your SWG cannot maintain proper FC levels, supplement it with liquid chlorine until that is figured out.
If you get algae due to low FC levels, that is far more concerning for kids than chlorine.
 
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NY Smokeater

Silver Supporter
Jul 25, 2018
41
Commack, NY
@PoolNewb2020 this was my exact response. I understand where she was coming from and share the same concerns but explained that algae would be a bigger issue requiring more chemicals to remedy if it gets to that.

I greatly appreciate the knowledge and direction from the members here. This truly is a tremendous resource for not so savvy pool folk, like myself.
 

NY Smokeater

Silver Supporter
Jul 25, 2018
41
Commack, NY
Sooooo.... We decided to let the pump run for about 20 or so hours straight. I had to work and knew my wife wouldn't use the shock in the pool unless I insisted and I was there. I did the quick K-1000 test and wouldn't you know, the chlorine level was between 2 and 3. See attachment. Before this post, it was .5 and barely yellow. It is still on the lower side, I think. My target for a ~7,500 gallon pool should be 3-4, correct?

Is is possible that running the pump without adding any bleach to the pool remedied this low chlorine issue? Water is crystal clear now as well.

Additionally, I realized I added too much water when running the salt test. I just did it again and I have a question about when to stop counting. The first of two pics showed when the water first showed a sign of turning brick red (4 drops of the R-0718). The second pic is after 20 drops. Am I going by the 4 or 20? Just making sure Im not over counting. (P.S. A video of this test would be great 😉)

Lastly, I testedthe TA twice. The first time I added R-009 until the water turned red. The second time I counted until I saw the very first change to red throughout the test sample, but it was a light red. When am I supposed to stop counting?

Here are my results as of today.
Total Chlorine: 2 (still low?)
Bromine: 4
PH: 7.5
Free Chlorine: 1.5 (still low?)
Comb. Chloramines: .5
TA: 110 (90- 2nd test using the very 1st change to a light red throughout the test cylinder)
CYA: 70
Salt: 4,000 (think this is high but may be counting incorrectly)

Enjoying this learning experience. Some things are finally coming together and hopefully moreso after this post.
 

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mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
33,092
Laughlin, NV
Use the FAS-DPD test for FC. You need to add chlorine now. Your target range FC for your CYA is 5 or greater.

TA test is when the last drop does not change the color. Not the intensity, the color. So I suspect that is 90.

The pH is fine.

Manage your FC. It is too low. You need to run your pump and SWCG 16+ hours each day.
 
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NY Smokeater

Silver Supporter
Jul 25, 2018
41
Commack, NY
@mknauss My power company is going to love me lol Are you sure you don't work with them? 👀 Shock will be added. 1.5 gallons is still the recommendation?

I usually rely on the FAS-DPD test anyway but was actually surprised to see the quick test showed a change.

With the salt test, the higher # was when the test cylinder turned completely red. I did notice a small change to the center of the swirl at a far lower number. I'm going off the complete color change, correct?
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
33,092
Laughlin, NV
I'm going off the complete color change, correct?
" until color changes from yellow to a milky salmon (brick) red" From the instructions.

You can add liquid chlorine every day to supplement if you like to run the pump/SWCG less. You have the smaller version of an Intex SWCG. You need the larger one.
 
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NY Smokeater

Silver Supporter
Jul 25, 2018
41
Commack, NY
Understood. Thank you @mknauss .

Im trying to understand better. Last year, I had a 16'x48" and ran the pump for 5 hours a day and never had a low chlorine issue. Only 1 time IIRC, did I have to use PH up or down but aside from that, all the numbers were within range.

Can this be chalked up to weather or is the 2' extra around make that much of a difference?
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
33,092
Laughlin, NV
The other one was 5300 gallons. I suspect you were not keeping your FC as high as you should nor testing like you are now. As 5 hours would have been about 1.7 ppm FC per day. Pretty low. Or it was cloudy alot last year.
 
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