New Home - First Pool - Where do I start?

DorsalSpine

Silver Supporter
Jul 8, 2013
334
Columbus, Ohio
I would net first, then vac. I don't have a robot so that answer depends on what you have. I'm not an expert on bots. If the filter on the robot will fill up quickly it's a waste of time until you get the big stuff out.

As noted above adding other chemicals can be a mistake until you know what's already in your water. I sound like a broken record but that's the way it is. You can't go wrong with adding bleach. Save the other stuff until you have a handle on the chemistry and a track record on how your pool reacts.
 

DorsalSpine

Silver Supporter
Jul 8, 2013
334
Columbus, Ohio
I see my response overlapped yours. Yes, bleach is the best way to go. I use liquid pool shock instead of house hold bleach. Read the label, you will find that liquid pool shock is just concentrated bleach. Clorox and other house hold bleach can have additives that you don't want in the pool.
 

PSUlion01

Well-known member
May 30, 2018
56
Northern NJ
Got the TF100 -- Test results are in:

FC - 4
CC - 1.5
pH - 7.5 maybe
TA - 80
CH - 100
CYA - <20 (water was slightly cloudy but could still see the dot even with the vial completely full.

Now what... SLAM?
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
May 3, 2014
18,475
Laughlin, NV
With elevated CC, most likely. What does the water look like?

Add 10 ppm worth of CYA via the sock method. Lower your pH to 7.2. Follow the SLAM Process process. Assume your CYA is 30 ppm for your SLAM level FC.
 

nick.simpson19

Active member
Apr 15, 2018
44
Daphne Alabama
Seems like you got all the advice you need, your well on your way to having a trouble free pool :) its SLAM time! Excited to see the results :) I can honestly say ive never had a green pool :) my friends locally seem to get them all the time. Liquid Chlorine and/or bleach is your best friend. I buy liquid chlorine form walmart when its available if not i buy bleach but you need to remember to check the dates.... it will read 287 18 838372 the first 5 numbers are the most important it tells me it was manufactured on the 287th day in 2018.
 

PSUlion01

Well-known member
May 30, 2018
56
Northern NJ
Seems like you got all the advice you need, your well on your way to having a trouble free pool :) its SLAM time! Excited to see the results :) I can honestly say ive never had a green pool :) my friends locally seem to get them all the time. Liquid Chlorine and/or bleach is your best friend. I buy liquid chlorine form walmart when its available if not i buy bleach but you need to remember to check the dates.... it will read 287 18 838372 the first 5 numbers are the most important it tells me it was manufactured on the 287th day in 2018.
Thanks for this. Picked up a ton of bleach at HD this morning and the date stamping explanation helped. Bottles all seemed fairly new, within the last 2 months maybe.

SLAM is underway. I'll report back with progress throughout the weekend.
 
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Tommy_G

Active member
Aug 13, 2018
37
Louisville
Good Luck.

One thing that caught me off guard was the amount of bleach it took to get through a slam.

These guys got you all set it appears, i found this site midway through last year after 3 algae blooms... once my slam was done, i was about 1 gal of 6% a day... never seen the pool so clear....
 
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PSUlion01

Well-known member
May 30, 2018
56
Northern NJ
That would be SLAM time! Be ready to test and dose with LC every couple hours to start.
So i just did my first FC test about 2 hours after adding the stabilizer to raise CYA and adding the liquid chlorine per pool math (added 2 gals + 3 cups based on a 30 CYA and 12 FC shock target in the chart.

As of this last reading:

FC 1
CC 7.5

What's going on here? Why did the CC jump up so high and the FC is basically where it started 2 hours ago? Did I do something wrong?

Weather here is completely cloudy today and raining on and off. No sun out at all. Not sure if that matters.

Help would be great!
 

DorsalSpine

Silver Supporter
Jul 8, 2013
334
Columbus, Ohio
The free chlorine is killing the algae resulting in combined chlorine. FC goes down as the algae dies and the CC goes up. This is normal. Reread the SLAM process and this will make more sense. One of the requirements is the Over Night Chlorine Loss test. You add/measure FC at night. Retest in the morning. If it doesn't change there wasn't any algae to kill.

A green pool is going to take gallons of bleach to clear and you need to baby sit it to keep the FC level high as much as possible.
 

aeh0603

Well-known member
Apr 6, 2016
188
San Diego, CA
I agree with what DorsalSpine said ^^

Your FC is killing the algae and coverts to CC in the process. The sun helps remove CC from your pool (the public pool "chlorine" smell is actually CC, you can't smell FC in a pool). Since you said it's cloudy, the sun is not removing the CCs very quickly so they test really high.

You are not doing anything wrong! Keep doing what you are doing! Test the water as often as you can and add enough bleach to your pool to bump the FC back up to your SLAM target of 12. The more often you can test and bump your FC back to SLAM level, the faster you will kill all the algae!
 

PSUlion01

Well-known member
May 30, 2018
56
Northern NJ
The free chlorine is killing the algae resulting in combined chlorine. FC goes down as the algae dies and the CC goes up. This is normal. Reread the SLAM process and this will make more sense. One of the requirements is the Over Night Chlorine Loss test. You add/measure FC at night. Retest in the morning. If it doesn't change there wasn't any algae to kill.

A green pool is going to take gallons of bleach to clear and you need to baby sit it to keep the FC level high as much as possible.
Got it... so it's working is what you're telling me. Should I be adding more frequently as the table instructs e.g. about 2 gallons to get me from 1 to 12 FC, and just test every hour, vs. adding more at once e.g. 4 gallons and giving it more time?

Also tested ammonia using an aquarium test kit (as suggested in another thread) and ammonia levels are elevated. Not quite sure if that matters or if I need to do anything different, but wanted to add that info in.

Off to add more bleach. Thanks!
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
FC 1
CC 7.5
Congratulations! You have ammonia. But you may already know that as you noted that in your last post as well. Adding stabilizer only fed the beast. Here's what you need to do:
Crank-up that FC to 10 and re-test in 10 minutes. Do not add any stabilizer at this point. In 10 minutes, if the FC fell NO LESS than 5, then you are fine to continue with your SLAM. If however, the FC crashed below 5 after 10 minutes (which I suspect is the case) increase the FC right away back to 10. Repeat this process until the FC holds for at least 10 minutes between 5-10. The closer to 10 the better, but you'll see it start to hold. There's no doubt.

Once you get that far with the FC beginning to hold relatively well, re-test your CYA. Much of it may have been consumed by the ammonia. If that happened, add stabilizer for a minimum CYA of 30 and no more and increase your FC to 12 - SLAM level. Continue re-testing the FC in relatively quick intervals at first to ensure the FC is holding at 12. Over the course of a few hours you should see a pattern where the FC holds better & longer. But in the early stages, especially since you seem to have ammonia, you will need to test quite frequently. Other than draining lots of water, it's the only way. So grab lots of bleach, get comfy, and SLAM follow those steps above. Good luck!
 
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PSUlion01

Well-known member
May 30, 2018
56
Northern NJ
Congratulations! You have ammonia. But you may already know that as you noted that in your last post as well. Adding stabilizer only fed the beast. Here's what you need to do:
Crank-up that FC to 10 and re-test in 10 minutes. Do not add any stabilizer at this point. In 10 minutes, if the FC fell NO LESS than 5, then you are fine to continue with your SLAM. If however, the FC crashed below 5 after 10 minutes (which I suspect is the case) increase the FC right away back to 10. Repeat this process until the FC holds for at least 10 minutes between 5-10. The closer to 10 the better, but you'll see it start to hold. There's no doubt.

Once you get that far with the FC beginning to hold relatively well, re-test your CYA. Much of it may have been consumed by the ammonia. If that happened, add stabilizer for a minimum CYA of 30 and no more and increase your FC to 12 - SLAM level. Continue re-testing the FC in relatively quick intervals at first to ensure the FC is holding at 12. Over the course of a few hours you should see a pattern where the FC holds better & longer. But in the early stages, especially since you seem to have ammonia, you will need to test quite frequently. Other than draining lots of water, it's the only way. So grab lots of bleach, get comfy, and SLAM follow those steps above. Good luck!
Thanks. Just tested maybe 15-20 mins after adding 2 gallons of bleach (which should have upped me 10ppm) and my FC reading came back around 2.5. I just added another 2 gallons and will test again right at the 10 minute mark.

Would it be advisable to backwash the filter now? Pressure is up about 10psi, but the stabilizer label said this would happen as the stabilizer got trapped in the filter and dissolved. Just want to be as efficient as possible with the process.

Regarding addition of the bleach, where is the best place to add? into the skimmer? In front of the returns?

<edit> Just re-tested after 10 minutes and FC is back to 2. Is it possible that all of the bleach gets consumed that quickly? It almost feels like I'm doing something wrong at this point, but perhaps not. Just don't want to keep wasting the bleach if that's the case. Do I just need to keep at it repeatedly?
 
Last edited:

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
May 3, 2014
18,475
Laughlin, NV
Sorry I did not have you check for ammonia before adding CYA -- in post 23 you said you had FC of 4 and your CYA test indicated you had some in the water. With ammonia, the pool will not hold chlorine and typically the CYA is 0.

Take care.
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Would it be advisable to backwash the filter now?
See if you can wait until you break through the ammonia wall before backwashing - if possible. If your pressure gets real high, you may have to. Always add bleach (slowly) near your return jets. You can brush around if need be. And you're not imaging things with the FC drop. The ammonia will consume chlorine very quickly until the chlorine over-takes the ammonia. That's why this initial phase of 10-min testing is so critical. Use the PoolMath tool to ensure you are getting the FC up to 10 upon initial dosing, then re-test in 10 minutes. It's a bear, but you can break through. Hang in there.
 

PSUlion01

Well-known member
May 30, 2018
56
Northern NJ
See if you can wait until you break through the ammonia wall before backwashing - if possible. If your pressure gets real high, you may have to. Always add bleach (slowly) near your return jets. You can brush around if need be. And you're not imaging things with the FC drop. The ammonia will consume chlorine very quickly until the chlorine over-takes the ammonia. That's why this initial phase of 10-min testing is so critical. Use the PoolMath tool to ensure you are getting the FC up to 10 upon initial dosing, then re-test in 10 minutes. It's a bear, but you can break through. Hang in there.
Thanks. The ammonia test i had was pretty old - would it make sense to go pick up a new one and get a proper ammonia reading? Just wondering if there's some tipping point where draining and refilling a portion of the pool would make more sense.

Appreciate the coaching here...
(y)
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
would it make sense to go pick up a new one and get a proper ammonia reading? Just wondering if there's some tipping point where draining and refilling a portion of the pool would make more sense.
No need for a new test kit. We know what it is. As for the water exchange, it's really your call based on water cost in your area and what you've done so far. Lots of folks get ammonia each year and make it through, but early intervention and 10-min testing is critical. Yes, you'll use some bleach, but once you break through you'll know it because the FC will hold.
 

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