New Build in Middle Georgia

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#21
Well the pool tech said he'd be here this morning to cut the water off, come home at lunch the pool overflowing and no pump and no tech. There goes my recommendation for supposedly the best builder in the area. PB says it'll be running today, tech was sick this morning.

I'm sure he's gonna tell me it's no big deal, but I'm also sure NPT says start filtration immediately for a reason. Is a day gonna be fine? What do I look for in scaling over pebble? Pics would be helpful. Wet Edge warranty concerns? Plaster life concerns?
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
35,961
Tallahassee, FL
#22
The plaster dust settling on the new plaster and sticking is the major concern as well as the pH and TA values in the very beginning. Call your PB and ask HIM to stop by and get everything up and running!
 

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#23
I don't think the PB could get the pump running if he wanted to. He came out to allay my concerns, they act like pebble's just some magically durable surface, he says they've left water sitting in it a week w/out filtration. But the tech did come out, pump was running after a few hours.

Wife loves the water color, bubblers and waterfall look great, lights look great. They put 3 trichlor tablets in the skimmer and had the dolphin running, both of which are instructed against by Wet Edge but it must turn out ok every other time they do it. I took levels a couple hours after they left:

TA 40 - Will this increase naturally as the plaster cures? I'm gonna monitor it over a few days and see if it changes.
pH < 7 - I guess because they're doing an acid startup?
CH 80 - Tech said they wouldn't add anything besides acid and chlorine for the first 30 days, so no calcium either. I'm going to monitor this one too and see if the curing raises it.

I don't want to overrule the PB on anything unless I'm absolutely certain, all I know is what I read on this forum. If anything seems outlandishly stupid please let me know and I'll speak up, thanks for the help.
 

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#24
Graded the yard today and hauled off the trash pile. Should do the spray deck next week and antique the coping, then hoping I can start on the fence next weekend. Levels are the same except the pH went up to 7.8, I think they'll be back tomorrow to add more acid. I'm going to ask again about adding calcium, might just insist on it since Wet Edge advises a CH of 200 from Day 1 in their start up instructions. Here are some pics:
poolhound.jpg
waterfall.jpg
shallowend.jpg
equipment_pad.jpg night.jpg
 

Attachments

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#26
Merged threads. Mod - Marty

My PB doesn't do many heat pumps, a handful a year, and doesn't normally put in bypasses but I requested one because I know they're recommended for numerous reasons. All I was thinking was a three-way valve and a check valve. After the tech plumbs it, he explains its operation to me but he's talking a mile a minute and I'm pretty new to pool equipment anyway. He stresses that he idiot proofed it and that I should never attempt to turn those valves with the pump running because I could block the flow and blow off the pipes, though those are clearly contradictory statements. Anyway, maybe I am an idiot, and I'll try to get the self-professed functioning alcoholic to explain it to me one more time, but in the meantime, maybe someone here can hazard a guess as to why he did this:
heatpump_bypass.jpg
The green valve I get, I can move the closed position to either block the heat pump and use the bypass, or block the bypass and use the heat pump. The red valve I'm clueless over. Why is this here and why would I ever move it from an open position?
 
Last edited by a moderator:

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
3,241
Northern NJ
#27
My WAG is the tech put the bypass valve in the wrong place and he just capped the third port when he realized it rather then cut it out and redo some piping. No logical reason why he would put a 3 way valve in there with a cap on a port.
 

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#28
My WAG is the tech put the bypass valve in the wrong place and he just capped the third port when he realized it rather then cut it out and redo some piping. No logical reason why he would put a 3 way valve in there with a cap on a port.
No he was very intentional about this. In fact, I think he made a special trip back to the pool store to get another valve for this bypass. When he demonstrated it to me he definitely turned both valves, I just don't remember which ways. This guy isn't new, he's the main equipment installer for the largest pool builder in the region and has been doing this for years. He told me he was up for hours thinking about this install and how to lay it out. But he said he was sick that morning, why he was late and let my pool overflow, so maybe he was on something that threw off his mental plumbing.
 

Bama Rambler

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 22, 2009
22,894
SouthWest Alabama
#29
He may have been very intentional, but he added a valve that really didn't need to be there. And it especially didn't need to be a 3-way valve. But that may have been all they had or as Allen said, he put it in the wrong place and just capped it off.
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
2,482
Damascus, MD
#30
That valve that is capped should have been a one-way valve, like the one right next to the heater output. The 3 way valve serves the same purpose by not allowing water to flow backwards (as long as it is set correctly), but it is an unnecessary manual step. With a one-way valve instead of that 3-way, there also would be no way for you to accidentally block all flow like there is now.

I believe, but I am not 100% sure, that you could open up that valve, remove the 3 way "guts", and replace it with one-way valve "guts".
 

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#31
I went to the pool store today to ask who I consider to be their expert, and she designed that layout. She said they put in that valve to prevent drainage when removing the salt cell. I'm still digesting that, but it seems like you could just use the green valve to block the flow out of the filter. You'll have drainage out of the heat pump either way, but she said herself it's not much water.

Edit: I did verify that we're only putting the actuator on the green valve and it's the only one necessary for backflow operation. The red valve will only be used for salt cell maintenance.

I also asked about the calcium. She said they've had issues adding calcium early and the pH sky-rocketing and scaling, so they don't do it for 30 days. Should I just trust their experience on this one?
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
2,482
Damascus, MD
#32
I went to the pool store today to ask who I consider to be their expert, and she designed that layout. She said they put in that valve to prevent drainage when removing the salt cell. I'm still digesting that, but it seems like you could just use the green valve to block the flow out of the filter. You'll have drainage out of the heat pump either way, but she said herself it's not much water.

Edit: I did verify that we're only putting the actuator on the green valve and it's the only one necessary for backflow operation. The red valve will only be used for salt cell maintenance.

I also asked about the calcium. She said they've had issues adding calcium early and the pH sky-rocketing and scaling, so they don't do it for 30 days. Should I just trust their experience on this one?
I understand what she is saying, but if that was a one-way valve, I think it would mostly stop the flow anyway. Usually when the pump is off, the filter drains down as well. There are not a lot of scenarios where you would be doing maintenance on the SWCG unless perhaps end of season when the water is drained from the system anyway. Just don't forget to put that valve in the correct position.

That red value needs to be in the "closed" position with the handle pointing towards the right when using the heater, currently it is pointing down. It needs to move in the opposite direction when the heater is running. There should be no scenario where water coming out of the red valve flows in any direction other than towards the SWCG. As it is set, you are in heater bypass mode and need to move that red valve in order to run the heater. If you don't change it, when the heater is running, you are short-circuiting the water through the red valve and also risk backing up the SWCG, which actually can be dangerous and cause an explosion.

Actually - You can loosen the thumb screw on the green valve and slightly lift the handle so it passes over the stops and that it points down and it will totally block water coming out of the filter.
 

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#33
I understand what she is saying, but if that was a one-way valve, I think it would mostly stop the flow anyway. Usually when the pump is off, the filter drains down as well. There are not a lot of scenarios where you would be doing maintenance on the SWCG unless perhaps end of season when the water is drained from the system anyway. Just don't forget to put that valve in the correct position.

That red value needs to be in the "closed" position with the handle pointing towards the right when using the heater, currently it is pointing down. It needs to move in the opposite direction when the heater is running. There should be no scenario where water coming out of the red valve flows in any direction other than towards the SWCG. As it is set, you are in heater bypass mode and need to move that red valve in order to run the heater. If you don't change it, when the heater is running, you are short-circuiting the water through the red valve and also risk backing up the SWCG, which actually can be dangerous and cause an explosion.

Actually - You can loosen the thumb screw on the green valve and slightly lift the handle so it passes over the stops and that it points down and it will totally block water coming out of the filter.
Look at this again with the red valve remaining in its current state. The bypass can be controlled via only the green valve - through the bypass in its current state or through the heat pump by pointing the handle to the right. My goal is to automate the green valve, and never touch the red valve. Agree or am I missing something?
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
2,482
Damascus, MD
#34
Look at this again with the red valve remaining in its current state. The bypass can be controlled via only the green valve - through the bypass in its current state or through the heat pump by pointing the handle to the right. My goal is to automate the green valve, and never touch the red valve. Agree or am I missing something?
You cannot turn the heater bypass (green valve) on or off without also changing the position of the red valve. If it remains as it is now, and you turn on the heater, the water will exit the heater and when it gets to the split between the SWCG and the red valve, some water will go towards the SWCG and some will go towards the red valve and back around into the heater, short-cycling the heater and also drawing chlorinated water from the SWCG back into the system. If you don't want to have to make any changes to the position of the red valve, I suggest removing the innards and replacing them with innards from a one-way valve.
 

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#35
You cannot turn the heater bypass (green valve) on or off without also changing the position of the red valve. If it remains as it is now, and you turn on the heater, the water will exit the heater and when it gets to the split between the SWCG and the red valve, some water will go towards the SWCG and some will go towards the red valve and back around into the heater, short-cycling the heater and also drawing chlorinated water from the SWCG back into the system. If you don't want to have to make any changes to the position of the red valve, I suggest removing the innards and replacing them with innards from a one-way valve.
You wouldn't turn on the heater with the valves in current positions as it's currently in bypass mode. When you turn the green valve with the handle to the right, the path to the bypass is blocked by the closed portion, no water is going through the bypass.
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
2,482
Damascus, MD
#36
You wouldn't turn on the heater with the valves in current positions as it's currently in bypass mode. When you turn the green valve with the handle to the right, the path to the bypass is blocked by the closed portion, no water is going through the bypass.
Ah ok nevermind sorry - Yes correct, with the green valve turned to the right, you are ok to run no water can come back around since the bypass port is totally blocked. Forget what I was saying above. I was looking at that setup wrong.

So you actually never need to change the red valve for any reason. It serves no purpose but does not hurt anything.
 

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#37
Ah ok nevermind sorry - Yes correct, with the green valve turned to the right, you are ok to run no water can come back around since the bypass port is totally blocked. Forget what I was saying above. I was looking at that setup wrong.

So you actually never need to change the red valve for any reason. It serves no purpose but does not hurt anything.
No problem, I'll just take comfort in the fact that this setup confuses even the pros on this forum and I may not be a complete idiot after all.
 

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#38
pH over 8.0 on Friday, added half a gallon of acid to 7.2 on Saturday, then back up to 7.8 on Sunday so added another half gallon, lowered to <7.0 this morning. I screwed up and overshot it, now my brushing is producing more plaster dust. Got a few bags of baking soda from WalMart and put in one 3.5 lb bag, gonna see if raising my TA from 40 will stop these wild pH swings. I should've started the waterfall and bubblers before I left this morning. Noob mistakes.
 

bmoreswim

Gold Supporter
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 16, 2012
4,309
Central MD
#39
Raising your TA will have the opposite effect on pH stability. Higher TA leads to less stable (more easily rising) pH. Though 40 is really an absolute minimum TA to have. Also, I wouldn't suggest running your bubbler and waterfall much as your pool is new and the pH is already wont to rise.

You're not seeing wild pH swings. Just normal ones. New pools (plaster pools) create rising pH. You are lowering it with acid, which is correct, to keep it in line. All seems good.
 

zac280

Silver Supporter
May 29, 2018
27
Central Georgia
#40
Raising your TA will have the opposite effect on pH stability. Higher TA leads to less stable (more easily rising) pH. Though 40 is really an absolute minimum TA to have. Also, I wouldn't suggest running your bubbler and waterfall much as your pool is new and the pH is already wont to rise.

You're not seeing wild pH swings. Just normal ones. New pools (plaster pools) create rising pH. You are lowering it with acid, which is correct, to keep it in line. All seems good.
Well shoot, I'd read the min TA was 60 and was hoping to get it there, but pretty crappy tradeoff if it means my pH is just gonna rise faster. I'm gonna try keeping my MA additions to about a quart instead of half gallons and maybe my pH won't get under 7.2. Seeing the plaster dust this morning is making me nervous, as I hadn't seen any in a couple days when brushing.