New build and balancing water

ssml11

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 31, 2014
135
Miami/Florida
#1
Hi. Just plastered on Friday using diamond brite Tahoe blue. I will share my original reading an plan of attack with you, would love to hear your thoughts:

Original Start-up readings (county water):
Free Chlorine: 0.21 ppm
Total Chlorine: 2.11 ppm
Combined Chlorine: 1.9
Ph: 8.6
Hardness: 79
Alkalinity: 68

On day one I added one gallon muriatic acid, and the sequestering agent to avoid stains.

On day two (today) I added 5 lbs of alkalinity.

Day three (tomorrow) I will add supercharge shock 1lb, another half gallon of acid and then the stabilizer in the afternoon.

I will then take measurements on Tuesday (day 4) and based on those try to keep ph closer to 7.2, alkalinity closer to 100, and calcium from 200 to 400.
 

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,879
Silver Spring, MD
#2
Do you know what kind of plaster startup you are doing? The comments below assume a standard start, an acid start or bicarb start would be just slightly different.

With fresh plaster the PH, TA, and CH levels will go up on their own fairly rapidly for the first month, and more slowly for up to a year. Because of that you should expect to add acid daily, and shouldn't raise TA or CH for the first few weeks least the subsequent increase leave them too high.

You also want to add chlorine and CYA very slowly during the first week, and none at all for the first three days. High FC or CYA levels right at first can compromise the plaster. Trichlor tablets are typically used during the first month, as they will add chlorine and CYA very slowly, and help with lowering PH.

Also, it is fairly important to follow the directions of the plaster company, if they gave you any, even if that contradicts other sources, as you don't want to risk losing your warranty coverage.
 

ssml11

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 31, 2014
135
Miami/Florida
#3
Jason - my local pool store recommend the startup I indicated above for the plaster I am using. The odd thing is that they recomended I shock the pool with 1lb of supercharge in day three. I know supercharge is known to shoot chlorine high, and I asked if that would risk damaging plaster. They said it would not be a problem. But, I am thinking whether I should add a tablet for two days or day and the shock pool on day 5 instead of day 3.

When you say add acid every day, how much?Also, should I be adding cya too? Nobody told me about that. So far I have only added acid and alkalinity. Stabilizer goes in tkmorrow.

Thanks.
 

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,879
Silver Spring, MD
#5
The amount of acid to add depends on where the PH is. Since the water is presumably fairly cold the PH may not go up as rapidly as it would if it were warmer, but it will still go up. You need to measure the PH, and calculate how much acid to add to bring it back down below 7.5, or if it goes above 8.0 in a single day then bring it down to 7.2 each day. The key is to never allow the PH to go above 8.0 if you can possibly help it. Depending on your particular pool that might not actually require adding acid every day, but it usually does.

There is never any point in "shock"ing the pool unless you are having a specific problem. Pool stores like to say things like that because it sells product and they tend to assume you don't know anything and haven't been following directions, so it can make up for mistakes you may have made and not told them about. Assuming you are actually paying attention there isn't likely to be any reason to shock the pool at all.

The National Plasters Council is very clear that chlorine and CYA should be raised slowly at first to avoid plaster damage. The risk isn't really all that high, but it is still worth following their advice to insure your plaster will last as long as possible.

Using one trichlor tablet for each 10,000 gallons of water in the pool, replacing as they dissolve away, and running the pump 24/7 will provide plenty of chlorine and CYA for a normal startup.

Stabilizer and CYA are the same thing. Raise only slowly just at first.
 

ssml11

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 31, 2014
135
Miami/Florida
#6
Jason. I took your advice and only added half more gallon of muriatic and placed one tricholor tablet yesterday. This morning the water looked much better. Haven't tested the chemistry yet but I am expecting it to look much better. Will share result later. I will be adding stabilizer tonight.

 

ITR

Gold Supporter
Nov 8, 2014
320
Clermont, FL
#7
Jason. I took your advice and only added half more gallon of muriatic and placed one tricholor tablet yesterday. . . I will be adding stabilizer tonight.
Just curious as I am a new pool owner. Doesn't trichlor have stabilizer in it? Why would you add more? Just trying to learn...
 

chem geek

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Mar 28, 2007
12,082
San Rafael, CA USA
#8
Just curious as I am a new pool owner. Doesn't trichlor have stabilizer in it? Why would you add more? Just trying to learn...
Trichlor is a single chemical combination of chlorine and stabilizer. For every 10 ppm Free Chlorine (FC) added by Trichlor, it also increases Cyanuric Acid (CYA) by 6 ppm. So if you want your CYA to get up in a hurry, then using Trichlor isn't the way to do that. Adding pure CYA will be faster. For an outdoor pool exposed to sunlight, getting more CYA into the water faster is useful. Not a huge deal though, but if one wanted to switch over from Trichlor to using their SWG, then the higher CYA level is needed since most SWGs are woefully undersized to be able to add chlorine fast enough compared to chlorine breaking down from sunlight if the CYA is too low.
 

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,879
Silver Spring, MD
#9
For fresh plaster you actually want to raise both the FC level and the CYA level only very slowly. Getting either one too high too quickly can potentially cause problems for fresh plaster. That, combined with the fact that you typically run the pump 24/7 for the first few weeks, makes trichlor almost ideal for the first month or so of a new plaster startup.
 

ITR

Gold Supporter
Nov 8, 2014
320
Clermont, FL
#10
Good to know, Jason. That's exactly what my PB has me doing right now. Three trichlor in the auto chlorinated tube thingy. Might switch to BBB, but I want to wait a while until things stabilize a bit.


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