Help!!! Yikes!

tessv

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Jul 3, 2015
161
Auburn, KS
Hello, everyone!!! We slid our pool cover open for the first time since closing in the fall and are opening to a black VERY STRONG SULFUR scented pool...
101233
Also have plaster erosion on the tanning ledge.

Guys are coming tomorrow to check the ledge.

Just wondering if the general opening guidance will take care of this, or if there are additional things we should consider....

Thanks in advance!!!
 

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ajw22

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TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
6,622
Northern NJ
Run your tests with your TF-100 and post. If you can take your water to a pool store and have them test it for iron.

I think a serious SLAM Process is required but let's see what we are starting with.

It sounds like you somehow got hydrogen sulfide in the water. Things may clear up some with letting the pool breath.

Let's call in the troops on this one @JoyfulNoise @Richard320 @mknauss
 
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tessv

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Jul 3, 2015
161
Auburn, KS
Thanks @ajw22! Ugh... we’ve been running the dolphins today and did get a baby mole off the bottom and a few leaves, but not much debris otherwise... not sure how he got in—doesn’t seem like that little body could be responsible for all this...

Question about running the first tests—the pool was winterized—we don’t have our “open date” set yet because we want to figure out the tanning ledge problem before starting adding this year’s water...

I can absolutely run a sample in to the pool store—but are you saying I should also run a full TF battery, even though none of the equipment is up & running yet? Just want to be sure! (I don’t even wanna touch that water!!! It STINKS TO HIGH HEAVEN!!!)

Thanks!!!
 

ajw22

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Jul 21, 2013
6,622
Northern NJ
Usually I would say get the pump running and the water mixed up before you run tests. Your Dolphin did churn the water up some and mix it. Given the swamp you have let's see what the chemistry is even before you run your pump.

I am worried about your heater if you have low pH. Do you have a heater bypass valve?

Never trust the pool store tests. You have a TF-100 so use it.

I leave it to you to figure out how to draw some water out of the pool in a bucket or something to get water to test. You have rubber gloves?
 

tessv

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Jul 3, 2015
161
Auburn, KS
Ummmmm... I’m not sure, but I don’t think so... everything is still taken apart on the pad...101264
 

tessv

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Jul 3, 2015
161
Auburn, KS
I’m losing daylight, but will run tests tomorrow and will try to get a sample in to the store—thanks again, @ajw22 !!!! So appreciative!!!!!
 

ajw22

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Jul 21, 2013
6,622
Northern NJ
Hard to follow what pipes are going where with your filter and heater. Need to see the piping that is behind that complex return pipes.
 

JoyfulNoise

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May 23, 2015
15,435
Tucson, AZ
Anaerobic bacteria will generate ammonia, methane and hydrogen sulfide gasses. Pool water can become highly anoxic (low dissolved oxygen) and if the right mix of low chlorine and bacteria is present, you can get sulfurous smells.

What kinds of chemicals were used to close this pool? Have dry acids been used to maintain pH? That is not normal plaster etching at all is highly eroded with possible freeze/thaw damage.

You need to know the pH ASAP. I would also get an aquarium ammonia test kit ($8 in any pet store that sells fish).
 

tessv

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Jul 3, 2015
161
Auburn, KS
@JoyfulNoise — thank you for jumping in, too!!! Yes, I think you’re correct and that the plaster problem is likely from freeze/thaw this winter... pool is drained below that ledge and the auto cover closes at that end. But there’s a small “gap” maybe 1/2 inch that probably let some moisture in and onto that ledge through the winter season.

With the exception of the first month after we built and opened the pool, we’ve used only liquid chlorine, Muriatic Acid, and Dichlor in this pool...

Our builder team closed for us this year, and knows (and supports) that we use TFP methods.... I don’t think they put anything in at close besides maybe some polyquat and the antifreeze in the lines... (but I can’t say for certain because I didn’t see with my own eyes). Will ask when we see them today.

I’ll pick up an ammonia test and take a sample to the pool store during my lunch today, and will run tests tonight. Will post all results this evening with updates...

Thanks again, you guys!
 
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duraleigh

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Apr 1, 2007
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Sebring, Florida
I disagree with testing before the pump and filter are running. The results are just not accurate and virtually everything we teach (preach) is accuracy. Get your pump running ASAP and start blending that water. You can test after a few hours of run time.

I also see no real value in going to the pool store for testing......you have the best test kit there is. Use it and stay out of the pool store.
 

tessv

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Jul 3, 2015
161
Auburn, KS
*We ran two swgs throughout last season. Pool gets full sun most of the day, and the single Jandy cell couldn’t keep up with the chlorine demand given the size of the pool.
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
14,920
Did you fill the pool with well water?

If yes, does the fill water have high sulfur?

If you're getting hydrogen sulfide, it probably came from sulfates. Chlorine should convert it to sulfur and sulfate.

The sulfur will filter out and the sulfates are not ideal but tolerable.

Does it definitely smell like sulfur (rotten eggs)? Or, does it smell like decomposition of an animal?

If a larger animal, like a raccoon or possum got in the water and began decomposing, it would really stink. A tiny mole wouldn't be big enough to create a big stink.

A SLAM should work for you.
 
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tessv

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Jul 3, 2015
161
Auburn, KS
Okay, folks... life got busy! 😊. Pool store test shows no iron or copper... pH and TA are high... and! Our pool store knows we’re TFP and don’t try to sell us stuff... “once you’re able to get your pH & TA down, SLAM and adjust your CYA, you’ll be good!” running ammonia test when I get home this afternoon ...