High Copper level

Ssmiller1120

New member
May 13, 2020
3
Stillwater MN
Hello, I read a bunch on here yesterday and really appreciate all of the help thus far! Thank you contributors!
We purchased a home in MN with an in-ground chlorine pool and I'm learning way more than I thought I would need to already. I read up on SLAM and related topics but I haven't seen much on reducing COPPER levels. We are extremely high in copper; 3.3 ppm and had extremely low/immeasurable ph and low TA. I've done the following over the last few days:

Initial #'s 5/11/20:
FC: 0.58
ph: 6.5
TA: 27
CH: 62
CYA: 45
Copper: 3.3
Iron: 0.1

Added on 5/12/20:
20lb. Alkalinity UP
2lb. PH UP
brushed
2 gallons of 12% liquid shock
- Became cloudy immediately, lasted for 24 hours, and I started to see things settle to the bottom after 12 hrs.
- Clear at 36 hrs, blue dusty stuff (very fine) settled at bottom.

Numbers on 5/13:
FC: 8.37
ph: 7.0
TA: 90
CH: 53
CYA: 44
Copper: 3.3
Iron: 0.1

5/14:
- water is clear
- vacuumed up blue dusty stuff
- slight blue ring on some of the sides at water level.
- Added 2 qt. of METAL MAGIC
- water is still clear 2 hrs later.

MY QUESTION IS:
- can you recommend next steps? Do i need to SLAM?
- Should I increase ph now? or check copper again first?
- Do you think that copper was the blue dusty stuff that settled since the ph and TA came up?
....I'm going to get it tested again (still don't have my own kit yet)

THANK YOU!
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Welcome to TFP! :wave: While we wait on your own test kit results, I think we can safely address the following:
- To confirm, is that copper level reading from the pool or fill water?
- Please update your signature with all of your pool and equipment info; it will be important later.
- A pH of 7.0 is fine for now; if the TA is 90 it's fine too.
- Don't buy anymore expensive pool store stuff. Example Alk UP is over-priced baking soda (same thing).
- Keep the FC between 5-7 ppm for now (best as you can) until your kit arrives.
- Do you need to SLAM? Depends on what your own water testing tells us and if you see any algae or cloudiness.
- The blue dust? Not sure. Copper can leave an off-blue/turquoise residue behind at times.

We'll know much more once you get your own test kit. That's especially important for someone in your position with a known elevated copper level. FC and pH control are extremely critical.
 

JoyfulNoise

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
May 23, 2015
16,959
Tucson, AZ
The only way to effectively get rid of copper is to drain water and replace with fresh water.

As you raise pH and chlorine levels, the copper is going to start coming out of solution. The MM can help to sequester it but even that will start to breakdown over time and release copper. The blue powdery stuff is definitely copper coming out of solution. You’ll have to balance your desire to reduce the copper levels with the expense and work of a water exchange OR factor in needing to use maintenance dosing of metal magic to keep the copper in solution until enough rain overflow can help to lower levels naturally.
 

Ssmiller1120

New member
May 13, 2020
3
Stillwater MN
Thanks for the quick replies!
- This was the measurement of the POOL water.
- Thanks for the tip on the pool store chemicals (I learned that reading yesterday, AFTER I bought it :poop:)
- I have a Hayward Sand filter, if I backwash it will it potentially wash out all of the powder (copper) and potentially be a more permanent removal then?

much appreciated
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Backwashing may remove small amounts that deposited in the sand while out of solution, but it's fair to assume more copper remains in the water that can only be removed via water exchange. Normally we don't think of copper so much from a well. Do you know how the copper got in there? Previous home owners? Are there any unusual devices on the equipment pad (i.e. mineral sanitizers)? Maybe the previous owners just bombed the pool with multiple copper-based algaecides? No heater correct? Might be good to have a fresh well sample tested.
 

Ssmiller1120

New member
May 13, 2020
3
Stillwater MN
ok thanks again for the help. There aren't any other copper contributors in the system (except heater - Hayward H250). Maybe an algeacide problem. I'll bring a well water sample to the pool store to have tested while i wait for my test kit.

thanks!
 

tim5055

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 11, 2014
10,925
Franklin, NC
copper contributors in the system (except heater - Hayward H250). Maybe an algeacide problem.
Well, these are the two most common copper contributors.

pH out of wack for too long will erode the heat exchanger in a heater and put the copper in the water.

Overuse or even use of copper based algecides will add it also.
 
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