Long time reader, first time poster


New member
Jun 8, 2008
Central Kentucky
Hello everyone

I have been reading reading reading on this forum and the old one for quite some time. I took everyones advice and bought the TF-100 and received it yesterday. (ordered it friday and got it monday...good turnaround) My first complete test was done last night. Some of the numbers surprised me...but thats why i got the kit. First of all let me say the water looks and feels great right now.

FC 1.5
CC 0
TC 1.5
PH 7.8
TA 240
CYA 20

The TA and the CYA kinda surprised me as good as the water looks and feels. Looks as though I need to add some bleach and some acid and some CYA. My biggest issue in my mind is which to tend to first...or all at once? I would guess that my TA being so high is a result of my tap water here....have not checked it but its all I can figure. I have not added anything to the pool except CYA and Bleach since i opened it.

Oh...the pool gets full sun all day..probably 12 hours worth right now and I have been running my undersized pump/filter 24/7 for at least a week.


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
May 20, 2007
SWSuburban Chicago, IL
Glad you decided to post....even happier that you've already been reading and got the test kit!

Use the pool calculator to figure your dosage for MA, to lower the PH to about 7.3. Don't worry about the TA just yet, unless you see the PH drift up rapidly over time.... when you shock, high chlorine levels can cause PH tests to be inaccurate, so be conscious of that.

You can begin to lower your TA over time, but unless you are having specific issues as a result of it, you can take it slower and focus on the CYA/chlorine and PH. It's not clear if the high PH is a result of your TA, but time will tell. If you lower the PH and it raises back up, then that's a good sign the TA is too high. There are other people that run with high TA's and it's not an issue for them

You do want to raise your CYA, at least to 40. And then remember to keep your chlorine in the appropriate range according to the chart. You can do these three things anytime, just keep that lil' filter running!

While you are working on the CYA/Chlorine/PH, you may consider looking for a fountain or something that will introduce bubbles in to the pool (aeration is how you lower high TA).

Here's the link to lowering TA - it's in Pool School....

Hope this helps!


New member
Jun 8, 2008
Central Kentucky
Thanks for the responses...

Added the MA...got my return line pointing up to create some bubbles

Added the CYA...in a sock directly in front of the return...it was gone in less than 24 hours

Slowly bringing up the bleach..

Going to wait till Moday to do another set of tests.


LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2008
Los Angeles, Ca
I hope you use the little blue kit to test TC and ph more often. It just takes few minutes to do.

For the full test, it may take a little longer for the CYA to really dissolve, I wait a week after I add CYA before I test for it.



Well-known member
Apr 8, 2007

Here's my take, and it may be controversial:

Your only real problem numbers are your pH at 7.8 (a little high, at the top end of the "normal" range) and your TA--240 was it?

FC of 1.5 with a CYA of 20 is a tad low--you should have FC between 2 and 5. If your CYA is 20, you should check chlorine twice a day and adjust as needed. CYA of 20 is not perfect but it's livable for now--the difference between 20 and 40 is NOTHING compared to the difference between 0 and 20. I'd zero in on TA and pH first.

(Oddly, with low FC, high pH and low CYA, you are good candidate to use tri-chlor tabs, if you have them, but only short-term---but that's an option--yet, I'd avoid it for now and stick with bleach.)

Let's talk about the pH and TA. The Racheting/Aeration method is ideal for you. You have LOTS of room to get pH down to 7.0 and it will lower TA at the same time. The aeration will raise pH without raising TA. Then you do it again and again until TA is where you want it...latest thinking is 80-100 gives better results than 90-120 for buffering pH (which is what it's for).

Once you are there, you can then decide what is the best CYA level for you. For me, I like 30 to 40 in the early season and only go to 40-50 in the worst of the summer, when I notice FC dropping a lot. People in the deep South, like Louisiana, may need to run CYA at 60-80ppm just to maintain chlorine levels, and keep their maintenance FC at 5-10 ppm. As summer starts tomorrow, I've pushed my CYA from 20 up to nearly 40.

I'm not at all surprised your pool is clear. The "Best Guess" table is just that and many pools stay sanitary when FC is lower than the level in the table--like at 1.5 with 20ppm of CYA!


Well-known member
Apr 8, 2007
frustratedpoolmom said:
waterbear said:
Gotta agree with CarlD. Once again he's right on the money, IMHO!
Ditto. I thought maybe I was missing something when he said his advice would be controversial.... :bowdown:
Thanks, guys., I felt funny contradicting FrustratedPoolMom, who wanted the OP to push CYA to 40 at the start.
I'm a newbie here, y'know.


New member
Jun 8, 2008
Central Kentucky
Wow...thanks for all the thoughts..first of let me say...I have been checking CL and PH every day, most days in the morning and in the pm, with the quick tests and adding bleach every night. I did add some CYA and some acid but in amounts lower than reccommended. With my water being so pretty I did not see a need to try and rush. My CL on the quick test is up a little to about 2-3..(hard to match those subtle colors of yellow for me!) My ph is down to between 7.2 to 7.5 and the aeration has been pretty much non-stop.

I should have added some more MA last night but that stuff is wicked. My son was out "helping" me check the pool last night and I didnt want to mess with that acid while fumble fingers was wanting to help. On a side note one of my co-workers who owns a 20000 g IG pool saw me a Lowes buying MA and when he found out what I was buying it for says ..."You Cant put that in your pool!"

Thanks again for all the help...This is almost getting fun! Is that possible?