Intro and confessional

WateryTartocrat

New member
Jul 14, 2022
3
Central Florida
Hello, I'm WateryTartocrat, and I'm an idiot. Thanks to TFP though, my pool is looking absolutely wonderful.

So how I got here.......time for confession.

8 years ago we purchased the house and it had an above ground pool. We've kept it and maintained it over the years, eventually replacing the pump and the vinyl liner at different points. For the most part I used powdered stabilized chlorine (Clorox Shock Plus), and it has been fine for the most part. I occasionally got visible algae on the walls and floor in spots, but nothing major.

Earlier this year I was having an issue with the pool becoming acidic, even below 6.8 ph. I kept adding baking soda to raise the TA, and adding both store-bought pH reducer as well as making my own soda ash from baking soda to raise the pH, but the pH kept low. I made the mistake of using an old test strip to see what was going on, and it claimed I had absolutely no stabilizer. So instead of checking with a different test or taking my water to the pool store, I go ahead and dump a load of stabilizer in the pool. Upon another test strip coming up with nothing, I added more. As I said, I'm an idiot.

About a week later I remembered I had an old TF-100 kit with a CYA test and reagent, and tested my CYA level. The dot disappeared after barely got a centimeter of water in, so I knew I was in trouble. I read up and found out what most people know here, and that the only way to reduce CYA is to dump and reload water. As I am an idiot, I waited to see if the Florida rains were going to help me with the issue by filling my pool with free water, but this rainy season has been a bit drier than usual.

Meanwhile, algae is gonna algae. My water went from blue to green, and the floor was getting harder to see. There was a lot of grit on the floor that wouldn't vacuum up, too. So after researching here on I finally realized I was going to have to dump the water and replace as soon as possible. I figured out my CYA was around 300, so I had to figure out how to replace the water to get to a reasonable level while not completely emptying the pool. I ended up dumping half the pool water twice, which got me close to a CYA of 70.

I then hit the pool with three bottles of 10% bleach to start to battle the remaining algae. The pool was much cleaner already, with no more algae bloom and no green tint anymore. And we finally got to enjoy the pool during this heat wave. The next two weeks I cleaned my cartridge at least once a day, and even though the pool looked really good, the filter had a yellow-green hue to it. I kept up with the chlorine and the maintenance, but at some point the yellow/green hue on the cartridge stopped getting better. I knew I needed to SLAM the pool.

I got fresh chemicals for my kit, and went to work. A couple of small dumps and refills got the CYA to 60, which is high but not outrageous for a SLAM. I hit the pool with chlorine and kept the FC up to 24 as much as possible, and within a couple of days the cartridge had no sign of yellow/green, so I knew I was heading in the right direction. After four nights I got the pool to an overnight loss of less than 1 ppm, so I knew the regular SLAM was done. While I likely had / have mustard algae, I ran of out of time to do a complete mustard algae slam as I had to go out of town, but I did get the FC up to 34 before I left town. Besides, as hot as it has been, we all want to get into the pool and I can always worry about mustard algae later if it comes back. If I do need to do it again, hopefully I can kick the can down the road until the pool season is over (usually November). By then I can get the CYA down closer to 40 if I need to do another SLAM / mustard algae SLAM.

Right now, the pool looks absolutely wonderful - crystal clear, no hint of algae anywhere. The numbers are pretty good, although with the full sun and little rain I'm losing 4-5 ppm a day of chlorine. Every night I'm adding chlorine to get to 10 FC (slightly higher than normal due to post-SLAM recommendation). With this sun I don't mind the 60 CYA. I got some non-stabilized Cal Hypo on sale ($99.99 at BJs for 40 pounds of HTH chlorinating granules) so I've been using that instead of liquid chlorine just to see how well it works. I'll probably go to the pool store and get on the bleach refill program there in the future, as it seems their chlorine is about 30% cheaper than the Walmart bottles I've been using.

So that's my story, warts and all. Happy to have my pool back and looking great.
 
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PoolStored

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 24, 2021
2,439
Ashtabula, OH
Pool Size
30000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
CircuPool RJ-60
Welcome to TFP!! :swim:

Joining Welcome Home GIF
 
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Newdude

Mod Squad
Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
16,551
NY
Hey WT and belated Welcome !!!!

Plenty of folks in the hot areas have a 50 or 60 CYA in the peak season. The only real downside is if you need to SLAM, which, you will avoid by staying ahead of the daily loss. I am a huge fan of running 'hot'. It will serve you well.
 
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WateryTartocrat

New member
Jul 14, 2022
3
Central Florida
Thanks for the welcome!

Figure I'll add another piece of evidence that I'm an idiot.....

The blue scoop that comes with the R-870 powder? It was today that I saw the little scoop at the end. All this time I've been putting a small heap of the powder on the other end of the scoop. Not sure why I never saw the little scoop itself. I've had to add powders in other things with a flat instrument, so it didn't come across to me as odd to put powder on a flat surface. I've gone through at least two jars of R-870 powder and never saw that little scoop.

When I saw the videos with the scoop, I figured I had an old paddle type utensil and that the scoop was a recent thing. Again, I accept my sign from Bill Engvall. :p
 
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PoolStored

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 24, 2021
2,439
Ashtabula, OH
Pool Size
30000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
CircuPool RJ-60
Thanks for the welcome!

Figure I'll add another piece of evidence that I'm an idiot.....

The blue scoop that comes with the R-870 powder? It was today that I saw the little scoop at the end. All this time I've been putting a small heap of the powder on the other end of the scoop. Not sure why I never saw the little scoop itself. I've had to add powders in other things with a flat instrument, so it didn't come across to me as odd to put powder on a flat surface. I've gone through at least two jars of R-870 powder and never saw that little scoop.

When I saw the videos with the scoop, I figured I had an old paddle type utensil and that the scoop was a recent thing. Again, I accept my sign from Bill Engvall. :p
The good news is that your testing was still accurate. The bad news is that you used more 870 than necessary. I've got a Looooooong list of blunders. You are not alone.

Youre Not Alone Democratic Party GIF by Joe Biden
 

TampaKathy

Gold Supporter
Oct 2, 2020
776
Tampa, FL
Thanks for the welcome!

Figure I'll add another piece of evidence that I'm an idiot.....

The blue scoop that comes with the R-870 powder? It was today that I saw the little scoop at the end. All this time I've been putting a small heap of the powder on the other end of the scoop. Not sure why I never saw the little scoop itself. I've had to add powders in other things with a flat instrument, so it didn't come across to me as odd to put powder on a flat surface. I've gone through at least two jars of R-870 powder and never saw that little scoop.

When I saw the videos with the scoop, I figured I had an old paddle type utensil and that the scoop was a recent thing. Again, I accept my sign from Bill Engvall. :p
This makes me laugh...I have to confess...the first time I used the blue scoop I did the same thing as you...used the paddle side...not sure what this says about us Floridians 🤣
 
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