New member
Jul 1, 2020
Chicago, Illinois
I'm Gossamer, a first time pool owner of an established pool in the home I purchased in December. I've had a heck of a time with the pool so far since opening, learned a lot, failed a lot, and still not at the point i have a consistently sanitized ready to swim pool. I suffered from a horrible case of my pool consuming pretty much as much chlorine as i could feed it, leading to me way over stabilizing the pool through puck over use. I've since gone through 2 drain cycles to deal with that and the super high phosphate levels. I have since been able to get Cyanuric Acid into a valid range (though still on the higher end, 70-80) and phosphates back to 0 (from 2800ppm at the start), however my pool is still capable of consuming 12ppm or more of chlorine during a sunny day and 3-4 overnight. I've been using a local Leslie's Pools for tests and advice, and while I've read some bad stuff here they have seemed to at least have some good knowledge compared to the stories(I've def picked out my point person there who knows more than the rest). I replaced my filters 3 weeks ago (expensive cartridge), which I knew needed to happen anyways, the previous owner's pool maintainer told me as much before i bought the place, and they were in very sorry shape. I have since cleaned the filters twice in the last week and a half because of the PSI going up by more than 10 after doing large shocks. In talking to Leslie's we've come to conclude based on what i'm scraping off my filters that I have a good ol' case of white water mold (slimy grey/white caked on filter). Last night around 9:30pm i put in 9lbs of the Power shock plus into the pool to get it to around 30-35ppm, which has maintained "high" on my chlorine test (which maxes at 20) throughout the day and my PSI on my filter has gone up by 6PSI so far since last night. I'm more than likely going to need to do yet another filter cleaning, which is fine, but now that I've found this place, I want to learn and get myself onto a path of a pool that doesn't make me hate life in it's maintenance. Some of the equipment i think is fairly old, and there's probably room for some improvements (such as, i can't backwash the filter, the piping isn't set up for that). I'm ready to learn and want to get on my path to proper pool care without the constant need for 15 different bottles of chemicals.

Some stats:
I'm in Chicago, IL,with an in-ground pool & spa. They are plaster lined (in need of replacement sooner rather than later). It's a 25k gallon pool, or so the pool people who opened it told me (and chem test changes based on amount put in seem to indicate this is correct).
There's a lot of trees and other plants around, I def have a big problem with debris. One large tree when it budded at start of pool season dumped a metric load of buds into the pool, followed by seeds. Busy windstorms and bad rain leave me with lot of leaves n such.
I have a nearly brand new polaris positive pressure cleaner bot that i run ~3.5 hours a day
At the moment i've been running the pump 24hrs a day, which is costly, once i'm in a better spot i'd love to set up a more reasonable schedule.
I clean the skimmers daily and skim stuff off the pool they don't catch. When my filter pressure is on the newer end (~14PSI starting) I have enough flow that manual skimming is largely unnecessary.
The filter system is a System:3 7M120 Cartridge filter system.
I have a well, so water is kinda free. However, I have iron, so replacement of my iron trap pool filter is a consideration.
For testing i have a new LaMotte ColorQ Digital pool test kit
I can add water test info after this shock calms down, but it's been varying a lot. Either the shock, or whatever it's reacting with, has been upping pH a decent bit when i shock, so much so that I've had to put a lot of powdered acid in to keep i down. Even still, this latest massive shock was showing it back to 8.1 as of this morning (from 7.7 last night) and 7.9 this afternoon. Or it's artificially affecting the test? not sure if that's a thing.
I no longer use pucks since my CYA is on the higher end (70-80 last I checked), at the moment i was planning to use this pool shock to chlorinate till i figured out a better more permanent solution (I love the idea of the salt solution, so I def want to investigate that). However, given I've just found this place, I'm very open for advice on how to start my journey from here.
Oddly enough, despite my issues, the pool has actually looked great most of the time, just can't keep any chlorine in it!

Sorry for the wall of info, it's been a very trying couple of months with this pool, and I've had to do a lot of learning, and have definitely found that there's a lot of difference of opinion out there, and many of those opinions are less than sound. I'm happy to be here and hoping to have a happy pool journey ahead.