Help me I am LOST bugs and plants??

TimandCeri

Bronze Supporter
May 13, 2020
23
Vancouver, Washington
So this is my first attempt at doing TFP method. I have a Poolmaster Premier Deluxe 5-way test kit. It tests for Chlorine, Bromine, pH, Alkalinity and Acid Demand. I got this until I order a kit. I feel like I am in over my head. I have 5.6% bleach. I did find I can get 12% which I will do once i use up all the 5.6% I stocked upon. I have borax and baking soda and I bought muriatic acid to have on hand. I don't understand my readings. I went to the pool store to have them help me understand, and I swear I think I am even more confused. I have some strips, the kid was like just use those, don't use the kit it will be easier. I went to the site to purchase the TF-100 kit but I have to add stuff to it and I don't understand. Everyone says it is simple but I am LOST. I purchased the app. When it says to add today for example 6.3 oz or 6 oz, 2 tsp by volume to reach the target am I only adding 6.3 oz to it? Or am I doing that times what? or is it only 6.3 oz? Sorry if this is a dumb question.

Saturday it was
FC: 1.71 CC 0.00 PH 7.5 TA 88 CH 89 and CYA 8 - the pool guy said I didn't need to add anything.
Its been raining here and cold for like 2.5 weeks straight so we have not been using the pool. It is covered however today I found the bugs. Are they backswimmer and water boatmen? I also see tiny green plants floating around. I only have the one pump that came with my pool, I am going to hook a second one up to an intext skimmer but with all the rain, I have not.

Today, I did put HTC algae gard in (16 oz) because of the bugs and plants I just found. I also added 64 oz of 5.6 % bleach. To help kill both as well. after I did that I started finding bugs floating so I think that should kill them? readings after I did this are: My FC is at 2.5, PH 7.6

What kit should I order? Can someone help me? We have trees so I get lots of cottons, and tiny baby pinecones. I am in WA state.

boatman or backswimers.JPGplants growing in pool.JPG
 

zea3

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2009
12,458
Houston, Texas
You will need to order the TF 100 from tftestkits.net It and the other kit we recommend (Taylor K2006) are not found in pool stores. Once you have your kit we can explain how to use it. The waterboatmen and plants you are seeing are due to low chlorine. Have you added any stabilizer/CYA to your pool yet? If not you need to add enough to reach 30 ppm so you don't lose all your chlorine to the sun. For your pool that would be 2lbs of CYA. Put it in a sock, tie it off and hang it in front of the return flow nozzle until the sock is empty.
 

Wobblerlorri

Bronze Supporter
  1. Get the TF-100 test kit. Get the XL size and the SpeedStir if you can swing it.
  2. When PoolMath says to add a certain amount, it means that is one dose for that day.
  3. You need to add enough CYA to bring your pool up to 30 ppm, and add 5 ppm FC daily until your test kit arrives. Then you're going to need to start a SLAM Process.
  4. Your FC and CYA are low. Your pH is fine, as are your TA and CH.
  5. Those are water boatmen and duckweed. They live where there's algae, which is why you'll be doing a SLAM when you get your test kit. Net them out, and scrub the sides and bottom of your pool to remove their eggs and larvae, then vacuum to waste.
And welcome to TFP! :wave: Be sure to read ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry and browse Pool School!
 

TimandCeri

Bronze Supporter
May 13, 2020
23
Vancouver, Washington
Thank you for the fast response. Also for the recommendations on what to add to the kit. I went ahead and got the XL size and the speed stir. :)
No, I have not added any stabilizer/CYA. I will get some tomorrow. The pool store near me sells GLB Stabilizer is that OK? They said I should put in .75 lbs in but it sounds like I need more?
This is a dumb question. I have read ALL of the pool care articles and did not see the answer. What does PPM mean? I am assuming it's parts per million. But I don't understand it in the context of pool chem care. I read about the SLAM process, I ordered the whale brush. What do you mean vacuum to waste? I have a vacuum but its this kind. Cordless
Water Tech Pool Blaster Catfish Li Pool & Spa Cleaner Amazon.com : Water Tech Pool Blaster Catfish Li Pool & Spa Cleaner : Swimming Pool Handheld Vacuums : Garden & Outdoor

the last question, is it OK to swim in right now before I do the SLAM process? We are FINALLY getting some nice weather the next few days my son is going to want to get in!
 

Mdragger88

Bronze Supporter
Jun 1, 2018
681
Hernando, Ms
Vacuum to waste is assuming you have a filter that can be turned to waste & your standard pool vac & hose attached to a skimmer. I’m not sure you have either of those. The pool blaster will work it will just fill up quickly.
yes PPM is parts per million- aka you have 2.5 ppm of free chlorine in your water it is a standard measurement - This measurement is the mass of a chemical or contaminate per unit volume of water.
 

mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
1,817
OV, CA
I know there is a lot to digest if this pool chem stuff is new.. it's worse that science class sometimes! Awesome that you got the TFTestkit. You will be happy with that.

Just to explain again, the CYA will help prevent the chlorine from degrading in your pool water from UV from the sun. And you need chlorine to sanitize the water. So you need both CYA and Chlorine. The amount of CYA depends on the size of your pool. So use pool math app to calculate how much CYA you need to add to get your CYA level to 30ppm and 5 ppm of Cl. In fact Zea already figured out how much for you, 2 lbs. The relation of the CYA and Cl is in this chart: FC/CYA Chart. When people are swimming in your water the chlorine will be used. so you'll have to add chlorine each day. The CYA degrades much slower so you don't need to add that everyday.. check maybe once a month. GLB will work. Sometimes the pool sections at Lowes or Home Depot have a similar product for cheaper. If you have any questions about the products don't hesitate to ask.

I know you will be tempted to ask the pool store people for help as well. Just be aware the method that is taught here is different from what the pool store does. They use a different standard. Of course we think ours is better. ;)

You can swim in your pool as long as you have some chlorine in it to sanitize things. so get it up to 5ppm and jump in!
 

TimandCeri

Bronze Supporter
May 13, 2020
23
Vancouver, Washington
I have read the SLAM process twice! :) I am ready when it arrives. Any tips for cleaning my cartridge filter? Last time I opened it up, I had a horrible struggle with the water that just gushed and gushed. Also, I have a 2nd pump I need to get hooked up to a skimmer. Where do you think the best placement would be for the skimmer? Near the current pump or on the other side? Will the skimmer basket work OK if I do not cut a hole in the pool wall for it? I did that for my last pool to use it but I am not sure I ready to cut a hole in this brand new one yet... LOL I have a INTEX Deluxe Wall Mount Swimming Pool Surface Skimmer I would like to get hooked up. Thoughts on this?
 

Wobblerlorri

Bronze Supporter
IMO a thru wall skimmer is superior to an over the wall skimmer. But your pool, your choice.

This probably begs the question, but you did have the pump off when you opened it to clean the cartridge? Water's gonna come out, no avoiding that, but it shouldn't be under pressure. Just clean your cartridge daily; even better, have two cartridges so one is filtering while the other is being cleaned.
 

TimandCeri

Bronze Supporter
May 13, 2020
23
Vancouver, Washington
IMO a thru wall skimmer is superior to an over the wall skimmer. But your pool, your choice.

This probably begs the question, but you did have the pump off when you opened it to clean the cartridge? Water's gonna come out, no avoiding that, but it shouldn't be under pressure. Just clean your cartridge daily; even better, have two cartridges so one is filtering while the other is being cleaned.
I actually have the skimmer that came with my summer escapes pool and a brand new pump for it. Would you advise cutting my pool and installing it? Thoughts on this? SFX1500 Complete Filtration System with X1500 GFCI 9 Pump | Polygroupstore that's what I have.... We were going to use it again, but the liner got cracked.
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
3,261
NY
Hey Ceri/Tim. Just to touch on what Guzzy said,
I know you will be tempted to ask the pool store people for help as well. Just be aware the method that is taught here is different from what the pool store does. They use a different standard. Of course we think ours is better. ;)
This link below is what the folks here can do to your pool water, if there is any doubt whatsoever. And *IF* a pool store could match it, you can be sure you'd be buying a shopping carts worth. Each. Time. You. Go. We, on the other hand, get nothing from you but the satisfaction of having another beauty out in the wild. Results from folks you can trust to have your best interests at heart.
 
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TimandCeri

Bronze Supporter
May 13, 2020
23
Vancouver, Washington
Hey Ceri/Tim. Just to touch on what Guzzy said,

This link below is what the folks here can do to your pool water if there is any doubt whatsoever. And *IF* a pool store could match it, you can be sure you'd be buying a shopping carts worth. Each. Time. You. Go. We, on the other hand, get nothing from you but the satisfaction of having another beauty out in the wild. Results from folks you can trust to have your best interests at heart.
Oh I am standing firm on not getting all the stuff. They other than this young kid who tried to sell me on the strips have been REALLY good about not trying to sell me something I do not need. A great support and have provided me with great service for the past 3 years. Anyone else there would have helped me but the kid just didn't know what he was talking about and I didn't want to bother to ask for someone else as they were busy. :) I sure appreciate it. I just dropped $150 on the TF100 test so I am ALL in this summer on this method! :D They are all super impressed with the pool math app
 
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Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
3,261
NY
Oh thats nice to hear you have one of the good stores. Guzzy and i both do as well but the 3 of us are the slim minority. Some of the things like 13 lb of baking soda for $6.99 at the wasrehouse club are just too expensive to buy at the pool store, but some others are reasonable and i dont mind paying a little extra from my store to keep a local family going. The key is to know exactly what you need when its time to go and the TF-100/Pool math will give you those details.
 
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TimandCeri

Bronze Supporter
May 13, 2020
23
Vancouver, Washington
Hey all my TF 100 kit arrived! I added 10.02 oz of stablizer on 6/19 the pool guy told me to add it SLOW as it can't bring it down with out draining my pool. So I did not add the whole 1 lb 75 oz at once. Yy kit arrived the 26th. I pulled it out and did my first test on the 27th. I guess I did not measure how much bleach I put in after putting in the stabilizer as its not recorded but I know I had. I did my testing and this was my readings on 6/27
FC - .05
CC - 0.00
PH - 7.5
TA - 140
CH - 75
CYA - 20?? I don't think it really was because I could still see the dot it was a light grey but I could not fill it any more 1593488784458.png

Pool math told me FC, TA and CYA were outside the recommended range, and PH was outside the ideal range I followed what it said to add.
I went ahead and added 19 more oz of Stablizer (the rest of the 1.75 lb container) to a sock. It still is not empty yet 2 days later. today I covered the hose outlet with the sock so that should finish it up.
I added 29 oz of what I said was 29% muriatic acid (this stuff Klean-Strip 1 gal. Green Muriatic Acid-GKGM75006 - The Home Depot) no where on it does it say the % so I went with the higher ratio to be safe (comments say Klean Strip is 20%) but as its not listed I have no idea?
I followed a SLAM instructions and added 120 oz of 6% bleach.

I did not have time to test yesterday and just tested now. My chlorine seems WAY high now? So I guess the Stablizer worked?
Here was the Taylor test:
It looks WAY more yellow than the 5:
1593489319021.png
So I went ahead and did the Chlorine drop test.
FC is 8.5
CC .5
PH 7.2
TA 80
CH 75
CYA 20 - still have balancer in my sock its rising for sure as at 20 I saw no dot at all. unlike the 27th. (I thought I snapped a photo but I did not.

My question is:
For the TA, the insructions say to put the R-0007 and mix, then 5 drops of R-0008 and mix again, my sloution is defently green. then it says add R-009 one drop at a time. 1st the drops are MUCH smaller than other drops, and 2 come out at once? So I am strugging stiring between each drop. (I am using the SpeedStir thanks for recomending that Lorri!) its more like every 2? Anyway, the pink (red) I am assuming pink - red wont stay? It appears as a cloud: So pink "appeared" at 8 drops so I -think- my reading is 80? It NEVER got up to full pink at 21 drops I figured I would just ask here before wasting chemicals.... can you see the swirls in the picture?
1593490379881.png

Question about the Chlorine drop test:
17 drops of R0871 got me here:
1593490500485.png
so thats where I got my FC 8.5

when I put the 5 drops of R-003. it turned to this color:
1593490712604.png
And after I added 1drop of R-0871 it went back even clearer than before? Did I do this right? is the CC: .05?
my TC is 9 correct? Thats too high, and I need to open it up to the sun right? It has a black cover on it that we would need to take off if we want to swim correct?

So also for the SLAM my FC is .05 if I do another test in the AM and they stay the same? (I cleaned the filters brushed and vacumed :)

Sorry for so many questions! I hope I did the tests right!

Thanks for the help!
 

mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
1,817
OV, CA
Yeah! your testing!.. fun like making mad scientist cookies, HUH?!

On the CYA squeeze that sock.. over and over again! I added 2 lbs the other day and just squeezed it until it stopped misting. Then I let it soften up a bit and squeezed again. I got it all dissolved in about 30 min. Then it should take about a day to register in the test.

That's awesome that you tried all the tests and tinkered with the stuff.
CYA test. Yes that is a hard one because it seems so subjective. .. Lets call your CYA 10. And your additions may not be reading yet. It only has a accuracy of 10ppm anyway. So fill the vial to each line and read it.. if it didn't disappear go to the next line. You can always pour it back in your squeeze bottle and give it another go.

ph and FC by OTO- in the color comparator. If the FC is higher than 5 use the drop test as you did. The comparator is really only for a quick and dirty reading. beside the pH is not accurate with a FC over 10.

DPD drop test. You are done when it turns clear and stays there. Your pic doesn't look clear. Then do the CC if you added one drop then your CC is 0.5 not 0.05. A trick.. when you doing a SLAM you can use half the sample (5ml) and each drop is 1ppm. That will help you save reagents. and if you need more accuracy go back to the 10 ml sample or even a 25 ml sample. You just change the multiplier for the number of drops.

Alk-TA .. lets not worry about TA right now if you are going to SLAM.. that is the last chem level to worry about and usually it will balance itself to your pH..But the thing to make sure of on this test is to hold the bottle vertically and wipe off the tip after each drop. It removes static electricity that can affect the test.

You need to follow this FC/CYA Chart for your SLAM levels. if you have a CYA of 20, SLAM FC is 10. .. but you should get your CYA to 30 is recommended for a SLAM then your FC would be 12 ppm. Your pH is already at 7.2 so no adjustment needed there to SLAM. Then keep that SLAM FC until you can pass all three criteria.

Hope that makes sense.
 
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TimandCeri

Bronze Supporter
May 13, 2020
23
Vancouver, Washington
No it’s like Greek. But I’ll come back and read it in the morning. And try to digest again! New and learning! 😂 thanks for the response! The good news is it’s been pretty clear and we only had bugs one other time after we caught them all the first time. We didn’t swim since Friday so it will be interesting to see if we have them again next time I take the cover off. (Maybe Wednesday) I’ll get there, and summer will be over! Lol
 

mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
1,817
OV, CA
OK.. lets backup. I reread the thread. Since you just got your test kit we wanted to see where your numbers where before we proceeded. Correct? And these are the numbers you test with:
FC is 8.5-This number is high for your target but low if we are SLAMing.
CC .5-This number is excellent
PH 7.2-this is lowish, but is perfect if we need to SLAM
TA 80-you weren't sure of the drops on this one but lets come back to it
CH 75-you have vinyl pool so we can pretty much ignore this one
CYA 20 ... this is low and needs to be brought up, but it looks like we are waiting for the CYA to dissolve still.

Based on what you described above you need to redo the DPD test until it goes clear. then test your CC.

OK.. is that correct? So I'm going to explain the next step. You need to SLAM if you are seeing cloudiness, Green algae growing anywhere, your CC is high or you are not passing the Overnight Chlorine Loss Test. Now that you have a kit you can test for chlorine loss very precisely. You said it was pretty clear, how clear? Can you post a pic? If its cloudy at all or any of those other conditions exist then we should proceed to a SLAM. And raise your FC to the level indicated.

I'm going to hope the CYA starts showing up in the water. Without it you will go through more chlorine, you may be able to get away with lower CYA levels since I think you said you had a cover. That helps keep the chlorine from breaking down due to sun, but other levels change due to the cover as well.

Another thing during the SLAM pH is not accurate with FC over 10, so the only thing you need to test for during a SLAM is FC
OK?
 

TimandCeri

Bronze Supporter
May 13, 2020
23
Vancouver, Washington
OK.. lets backup. I reread the thread. Since you just got your test kit we wanted to see where your numbers where before we proceeded. Correct? And these are the numbers you test with:
FC is 8.5-This number is high for your target but low if we are SLAMing.
CC .5-This number is excellent
PH 7.2-this is lowish, but is perfect if we need to SLAM
TA 80-you weren't sure of the drops on this one but lets come back to it
CH 75-you have vinyl pool so we can pretty much ignore this one
CYA 20 ... this is low and needs to be brought up, but it looks like we are waiting for the CYA to dissolve still.

Based on what you described above you need to redo the DPD test until it goes clear. then test your CC.

OK.. is that correct? So I'm going to explain the next step. You need to SLAM if you are seeing cloudiness, Green algae growing anywhere, your CC is high or you are not passing the Overnight Chlorine Loss Test. Now that you have a kit you can test for chlorine loss very precisely. You said it was pretty clear, how clear? Can you post a pic? If its cloudy at all or any of those other conditions exist then we should proceed to a SLAM. And raise your FC to the level indicated.

I'm going to hope the CYA starts showing up in the water. Without it you will go through more chlorine, you may be able to get away with lower CYA levels since I think you said you had a cover. That helps keep the chlorine from breaking down due to sun, but other levels change due to the cover as well.

Another thing during the SLAM pH is not accurate with FC over 10, so the only thing you need to test for during a SLAM is FC
OK?
Thanks, Mguzzy!

My original numbers I tested BEFORE I did a slam was

on 6/27
FC - .05
CC - 0.00
PH - 7.5
TA - 140
CH - 75

those numbers you referenced was after I added 120 oz of 6% bleach on 3/27 after my tests.

I did the Chlorine Drop test (is this what you call DPD test? this morning
that looked like 16 drops till it got clear
1593535658619.png
When I added the 5 drops of R-0003 this time it stayed clear. So I have no CC? Is that good? And at 16 drops of R-0871 this means my FC is 8 right. Last night I added the 19 oz of 6% bleach according to pool math to get it to 10 in the SLAM. So it dropped .5 if I am right, and did not get to 10?

Also, I did the CYA test this AM and that is now at I think 30 ish?
Here it is at 30 and 40
1593536103006.png
this is slightly above 30 but closer to 30 than 20? So because its is closer to 30 than 20 is it 30? The sock was empty this AM and the pump ran all night.
1593536134857.png1593536155895.png
As requested here are some pictures of my pool. It looks clear to me, not at all cloudy. I see no bugs this AM not really seen the duckweed either.
1593536500963.png
1593536547943.png

I have family coming and we want to be using the pool wed. Am I correct that right now the FC is too high to swim? I am willing to put the SLAM process on hold and wait till they leave Sunday if I need to.

Thank you!
 

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mguzzy

Gold Supporter
Jul 8, 2015
1,817
OV, CA
The pool looks GREAT! I always love pics with a turkey baster in the background!🦃

First .. you can swim in a pool during a SLAM as long as the FC is NOT higher than what is stated on the chart. .. but remember if you are going to swim during a SLAM, you are adding chlorine demand.

those numbers you referenced was after I added 120 oz of 6% bleach on 3/27 after my tests
I assume you mean 6/27?

The CYA test-... the pic with the dot obscured at 25.. that is a CYA of 30. you always round up. I bet your CYA will drift up some more as it dissolves

So the "M" in the SLAM process is important.. that is to Maintain the SLAM FC throughout the process. If you have done that and passed the three criteria then it looks like you are done SLAMing...
1) looks crystal clear to me -check
2) CC less than .5 .. your last DPD shows that-check
3) Did you do an OCLT? -if yes and you lost less than 1ppm then your are done SLAMing

Then just let the FC drift back down to the recommended target range and enjoy the pool! ;)

BTW, I am going to suggest your CYA pics be put in the Hall of FAME... they perfectly show what the process looks like @mknauss
 
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