Is it essential to use floc when opening pool?

I've just done the spring pool opening process, and actually it was in good shape this year (no green water or green stuff round the edges this year!).

Previously (having first netted out any larger debris and vacuumed smaller settled debris to waste) I've added shock chlorine to the water and scrubbed off any algae etc, then vacuumed the settled dead stuff to waste, then have always added floc to get the cloudiness out of the water and settled on the floor then I vacuum that out to waste.

This year, I've added the shock and brushed as normal, resulting in some settled stuff which I've vacuumed to waste before leaving the filter to run, and the water is now crystal clear! - do I still need to use floc? will there be "invisible" impurities that need taking out of the water with floc? Or can I just leave the floc on the shelf this year?
 

Mendy48

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Apr 27, 2018
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Midland, MI
Hello. One of the first things I’ll do is get a current chemistry balance of your pool using your test kit (FC, CC, CYA, CH, TA, pH). Post the results here. It would help us understand what we’re working with. Also, could you add your signature to your profile that show your pool information. See mine for an example.
 
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kimkats

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Jul 10, 2012
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Tallahassee, FL
Mendy has you well covered on the "housekeeping" stuff so I will touch on the floc--------------------NOPE! You do not need to floc your pool. In fact you should never need to use floc. Almost always problems with pool water can be taken care of using the standard stuff like liquid chlorine, brushing, and running the filter.
 
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Thanks, that's great to know! I think I've always done it because the pool guys always did it! Ashamed to admit it here, but I don't actually have a pool testing kit capable of getting all that information - I rely on a water test (DPD, Phenol) and tester strips to check CH and pH. Right now CH is a tad high (following shock) and pH just a tad low. I'll update my signature (and maybe get a better test kit!).
 

kimkats

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Greg, I really do hope you get a better test kit. Once you get the water balanced using the good test kit you will wonder how you even thought your water was clear before. The difference is amazing!
 

splashpad

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Aug 2, 2017
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SE Kansas!
I've just done the spring pool opening process, and actually it was in good shape this year (no green water or green stuff round the edges this year!).
...
This year, I've added the shock and brushed as normal, resulting in some settled stuff which I've vacuumed to waste before leaving the filter to run, and the water is now crystal clear! - do I still need to use floc? will there be "invisible" impurities that need taking out of the water with floc? Or can I just leave the floc on the shelf this year?
That's great to hear! Second the no floc!

Thanks, that's great to know! I think I've always done it because the pool guys always did it! Ashamed to admit it here, but I don't actually have a pool testing kit capable of getting all that information - I rely on a water test (DPD, Phenol) and tester strips to check CH and pH. Right now CH is a tad high (following shock) and pH just a tad low. I'll update my signature (and maybe get a better test kit!).
If you can get a full 5-6 way drops test, plus FAS-DPD and CYA, your pool will be in much better shape!

Also since you have a vinyl pool, if you can get liquid chlorine (household bleach, also) instead of the bags of shock, you would notice increased clarity, your pool doesn't need calcium, which is why you & the pool service were having to use a floc, to clear the cloudiness.
 
Thanks again. I'd never even heard of CYA testing(!) but I'll take a look at the test kits. Here in the UK, as far as I can see, they tend to be either very cheap and simple (comparator test, test strips) or very complex and expensive (electronic photometers). Nice tip on the shock, too. This time I used a rapid dissolving shock chlorine, which can be added to the pool directly (without pre-dissolving) and doesn't seem to get the water as cloudy as the granules... but I guess liquid would be better still.
 

splashpad

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Aug 2, 2017
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SE Kansas!
Thanks again. I'd never even heard of CYA testing(!) but I'll take a look at the test kits. Here in the UK, as far as I can see, they tend to be either very cheap and simple (comparator test, test strips) or very complex and expensive (electronic photometers). Nice tip on the shock, too. This time I used a rapid dissolving shock chlorine, which can be added to the pool directly (without pre-dissolving) and doesn't seem to get the water as cloudy as the granules... but I guess liquid would be better still.
This is an extremely overpriced basic test kit Guardex Test Kit (It does not measure accurate FC, and doesn't have CYA test at all)

I don't know if @OTPirate or someone at @InyoRob could have better ideas for you?

There are a couple of taylor kits on Amazon.uk, but I'm not sure how the shipping cost & import fee would work.

Do you have any pool stores near enough to inquire about ordering testing supplies?
Sundance Pool Supply or Imperial Pool Supply are two I can find on Google.
 
I saw the Guardex kit on that site but as you say it doesn't really do everything. Thanks for the tips on local pool stores - in fact Imperial is a guy literally just down the road but I don't know if he actually still does pool supplies! There are a couple of other places nearby, but their chemicals etc are usually steeply overpriced. Actually one's not so bad so maybe I'll pay him a visit. In the meantime I'll take a look at those Taylor kits on Amazon. Clear Choice kits look good but only ship to Oz & NZ. Thanks again for all the help!
 
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mknauss

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May 3, 2014
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