Help with Alkalinity

goldmaes

Well-known member
Dec 5, 2018
57
Palm City, FL
I have been allowing my pool maintenance company to manage my pool chemicals and until recently everything has been great. They hired a new person to clean my pool and things rapidly deteriorated with significant algae. We now have that under control however now my Alkalinity is significantly low at only 21 ppm. pH has been a little high bouncing between 7.6 and 7.8. I know I need to get the alkalinity up but my fear is that to raise it that much that I will be throwing the pH way out of whack. Any suggestions for controlling the increase without getting into a major chemical battle?
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
34,242
Sebring, Florida
Fixing the TA and not overshooting the pH is easy. But I don't think that is your problem. I do not believe your TA is that low with a pH around 7.7 or so. I think one or the other (or both) is off.

TFP generally believes that pool store testing is pretty worthless and Strips are normally just as bad and can be worse.

If you are going to take on managing your own pool, you need to stay away from the pool store and purchase either the TFTestkits TF-100 or the Taylor K-2006C.

Then post those results (which we all can trust) and we'll see what adjustments need to be made.....probably not as much as you might think.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
18,730
Bedford, TX
Eric,

What is your CYA? Pool $tores use "adjusted" TA.. This is determined by subtracting 1/3rd of your CYA level from the TA measurement.

If you have been having someone else tend to your pool, I would suspect they have been using tablets or similar products and that your CYA is high and that is why you had an algae bloom. I also doubt that you have gotten it "under control", but rather have just knocked it back so that you don't see it, yet..

Thanks,

Jim R.
 
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goldmaes

Well-known member
Dec 5, 2018
57
Palm City, FL
Fixing the TA and not overshooting the pH is easy. But I don't think that is your problem. I do not believe your TA is that low with a pH around 7.7 or so. I think one or the other (or both) is off.

TFP generally believes that pool store testing is pretty worthless and Strips are normally just as bad and can be worse.

If you are going to take on managing your own pool, you need to stay away from the pool store and purchase either the TFTestkits TF-100 or the Taylor K-2006C.

Then post those results (which we all can trust) and we'll see what adjustments need to be made.....probably not as much as you might think.
Will do. Any thoughts about the ColorQ digital tests? The reason is that I am badly colorblind so that's why I was taking the water to the store.
 

goldmaes

Well-known member
Dec 5, 2018
57
Palm City, FL
Eric,

What is your CYA? Pool $tores use "adjusted" TA.. This is determined by subtracting 1/3rd of your CYA level from the TA measurement.

If you have been having someone else tend to your pool, I would suspect they have been using tablets or similar products and that your CYA is high and that is why you had an algae bloom. I also doubt that you have gotten it "under control", but rather have just knocked it back so that you don't see it, yet..

Thanks,

Jim R.
CYA is way high at 84. I know it is being managed horribly.
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
34,242
Sebring, Florida
ColorQ is an OK kit but it misses the mark in some precision. Repeatability is OK, I think.

Disregard your color blindness when you consider these drops based kits. They rely on color change rather than shading for the most part. Few people (if any) have ANY trouble with them once they try them.
 

goldmaes

Well-known member
Dec 5, 2018
57
Palm City, FL
ColorQ is an OK kit but it misses the mark in some precision. Repeatability is OK, I think.

Disregard your color blindness when you consider these drops based kits. They rely on color change rather than shading for the most part. Few people (if any) have ANY trouble with them once they try them.
Perfect. Thanks so much.
 

goldmaes

Well-known member
Dec 5, 2018
57
Palm City, FL
Fixing the TA and not overshooting the pH is easy. But I don't think that is your problem. I do not believe your TA is that low with a pH around 7.7 or so. I think one or the other (or both) is off.

TFP generally believes that pool store testing is pretty worthless and Strips are normally just as bad and can be worse.

If you are going to take on managing your own pool, you need to stay away from the pool store and purchase either the TFTestkits TF-100 or the Taylor K-2006C.

Then post those results (which we all can trust) and we'll see what adjustments need to be made.....probably not as much as you might think.
Thanks so much for your thoughts. I finally received the k-2006c today and the following are my results.

Free Chlorine 7.4
pH 7.8
Total Alkalinity 80
CYA 80
Calcium Hardness 120

You are correct the TA was no where near where the pool store said it was. I am a bit concerned about the high CYA. The pool cleaner has been managing the chemicals and I noticed that they are using chlorine tablets in my surge tank. I'll need to find out if that is driving the high CYA. The only other Issue I have noticed is that I am starting to get staining on the diamond brite mostly around the abalone shell that is in it. The pool has had shell in it for years and has never stained . It started right around the time I had the algae bloom. Any thoughts on remedies? Thanks so much for everyone's help. I have learned a ton from this site.