New Homeowner - 1st Time Pool owner!

Cgrez33

Active member
Apr 20, 2019
36
College Park, Maryland
Hello everyone, Chris here!

I'm a first time home buyer lucky enough to have a pool come along with it.

That being said this is all extremely new to me. I have read several articles and a couple of posts on how to get started.

I've ordered a TF-100 Test kit that should arrive within the next few days.
I've also stocked up on about 10 Gallons of Liquid Chlorine 10%. Solely from the information I've gathered from the articles I know I will use these at some point.

When I bought the house the pool was winterized and the water was a little bit below the jets.
I filled it up to a little bit past the skimmer with a fire hydrant (I let the water clear out of the hydrant first of course).
We also tested the pump and according to a friend of mine who owns a pool everything seems functional.

I've been cleaning the top of the surface and have used the blaster leaf vac for the pool.

Is there anything else I could be doing while I wait for the test kit to arrive?
The previous owner left many products but most were left out in the rain for at least a year am I better off throwing all these buckets out?

Also the telescopic pole for the vacuum snapped in half on my first use (looks pretty old) any recommended sturdy ones?
Anyone here use the protuff skimming leaf rake?
Most of the equipment looks like it's reaching it's time so I just want to preemptively plan on any equipment I may need to replace.

Water is light green in shallow areas, and a dark green in the deep end.

Thank you guys!

A pic of what I'm working with!
 

Teald024

TFP Guide
Hello and Welcome to TFP!!! Congrats on the new pool and the house that came with it! You will be glad you found your way here before you learned any bad habits. You have started off great so far. Test kit on order, read through some articles in PoolSchool. Make sure you read up on the SLAM Processprocess. That will be the first thing you do when your kit arrives. Until then, you can get a start by pouring one bottle of that liquid chlorine in each day. Don't add anything else, nothing! Once your kit arrives, run all your tests and post the results. We can advise further with the test results. There is a link to the extended test directions if you want some additional directions on the test kit. If the CYA test is over 100ppm, then do the dilution test step #9.

Post like this.
FC use the powder and drops. Don't worry about the OTO test with the block
CC
pH
TA
CH
CYA
 
Last edited:

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
41,325
Tallahassee, FL
Dave has you well covered! Keep taking pics so you can see your pool turn into a jewel!

Have you taken the filter apart to clean it yet? If not you might want to do so.

Kim:kim:
 

jimmythegreek

TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
In The Industry
Aug 10, 2017
1,341
Morris Cnty NJ
Dave has it right on. Add a bottle a day for now keep pump on 24/7 and clean your filter if you haven't already its prob dirty from previous owners. This will clear fast and then you figure out where your CYA is at so you can plan for a partial drain if needed.
 
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splashpad

Bronze Supporter
Aug 2, 2017
1,994
SE Kansas!
Welcome!

What chemicals were in the buckets?
Can you share pics of equipment pad.
Pics & info like you provided, will make quick easy work of your pool ownership!
Such a fun summer ahead!
 

Teald024

TFP Guide
@Cgrez33 . The purpose of adding chlorine at this point is not to clear the pool. It is to try to keep it from getting worse. You are basically in a hold pattern at the moment waiting for the test kit to show up. Don't expect this to clear before then. You'll need the test kit to determine the CYA level in the water. From there, use the FC/CYA Chart to determine the proper FC level for the SLAM Process process. If you end up having high CYA or no CYA, then there will be additional steps needed before the SLAM process can begin.
 

Cgrez33

Active member
Apr 20, 2019
36
College Park, Maryland
Hello and Welcome to TFP!!! Congrats on the new pool and the house that came with it! You will be glad you found your way here before you learned any bad habits. You have started off great so far. Test kit on order, read through some articles in PoolSchool. Make sure you read up on the SLAM Processprocess. That will be the first thing you do when your kit arrives. Until then, you can get a start by pouring one bottle of that liquid chlorine in each day. Don't add anything else, nothing! Once your kit arrives, run all your tests and post the results. We can advise further with the test results. There is a link to the extended test directions if you want some additional directions on the test kit. If the CYA test is over 100ppm, then do the dilution test step #9.

Post like this.
FC use the powder and drops. Don't worry about the OTO test with the block
CC
pH
TA
CH
CYA
Thank you, as soon as my test kit comes in I will post my results.
Dave has you well covered! Keep taking pics so you can see your pool turn into a jewel!

Have you taken the filter apart to clean it yet? If not you might want to do so.

Kim:kim:
I did! Thanks for the heads up. We have 4 filters that the previous home owner left us with and we cleaned them all out when we tested for the pump.

Skimlite dually 9018 pole $120 on ebay
Sweepease brush $13 on ebay
I will look into these thanks!

Dave has it right on. Add a bottle a day for now keep pump on 24/7 and clean your filter if you haven't already its prob dirty from previous owners. This will clear fast and then you figure out where your CYA is at so you can plan for a partial drain if needed.
That is the plan. I will post results as soon as I get the kit.

Welcome!

What chemicals were in the buckets?
Can you share pics of equipment pad.
Pics & info like you provided, will make quick easy work of your pool ownership!
Such a fun summer ahead!
There was a bucket that was labeled "alcaline" and like 5 calcium something buckets (labels were really faded) but from what I understand you don't really use that in vinyl pools?

@Cgrez33 . The purpose of adding chlorine at this point is not to clear the pool. It is to try to keep it from getting worse. You are basically in a hold pattern at the moment waiting for the test kit to show up. Don't expect this to clear before then. You'll need the test kit to determine the CYA level in the water. From there, use the FC/CYA Chart to determine the proper FC level for the SLAM Process process. If you end up having high CYA or no CYA, then there will be additional steps needed before the SLAM process can begin.
Awesome will do, thanks!

I will look into this!

This is my favorite pole after using a number of different ones. Price has nearly doubled in recent years but it will last for many seasons:

Amazon.com : JED Pool Tools 50-560-16 Professional Deluxe Anodized Telescopic Pole, 16-Feet : Swimming Pool Maintenance Kits : Gateway
This is the one I had originally thought of purchasing saw great reviews on it.
 

Cgrez33

Active member
Apr 20, 2019
36
College Park, Maryland
So I had a bit of a disappointing evening today.

The home was purchased around November, and the water had been at the same level (below the jets) up until. Last weekend when I filled it. I noticed today that the water had dropped maybe 2" or so between yesterday and today. I had the water about a little more than 1/4 up the skimmer and today it's below. Since the pool obviously isn't very clean I can clearly see where the previous water mark was. I'm really hoping I don't have a leak somewhere. I don't see any signs of water around the pool. We've had hot days but I don't think water evaporates that fast.

Any ideas or suggestions?
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
41,325
Tallahassee, FL
Try the bucket test. Here is a link to a thread that talks about it:

Also look real close inside your skimmer. The part between the wall and basket is prone to creaks. See what you can see there.
 

splashpad

Bronze Supporter
Aug 2, 2017
1,994
SE Kansas!
...
There was a bucket that was labeled "alcaline" and like 5 calcium something buckets (labels were really faded) but from what I understand you don't really use that in vinyl pools?
...
Great to have a new informed member!
Correct, calcium is not necessary for vinyl.
So that tells us the calcium might be high, depending on how much water has exchanged in the last year.

Have you sourced a good local deal on sodium hypochlorite (aka Bleach, Liquid Chlorine, Liquid Shock)? If you have janitorial supply stores or "good" pool stores nearby, you might be able to get higher strength, 10%-12.5% (if the price is better than your local 6% household bleach gallons)
 

Cgrez33

Active member
Apr 20, 2019
36
College Park, Maryland
Try the bucket test. Here is a link to a thread that talks about it:

Also look real close inside your skimmer. The part between the wall and basket is prone to creaks. See what you can see there.
I will try that today and post results later. I dope it’s something simple like the skimmer!

Great to have a new informed member!
Correct, calcium is not necessary for vinyl.
So that tells us the calcium might be high, depending on how much water has exchanged in the last year.

Have you sourced a good local deal on sodium hypochlorite (aka Bleach, Liquid Chlorine, Liquid Shock)? If you have janitorial supply stores or "good" pool stores nearby, you might be able to get higher strength, 10%-12.5% (if the price is better than your local 6% household bleach gallons)
Yeah I have I get liquid chlorine from Lowe’s that’s 10% for about $2.89! I stocked up on like 10 gallons for when the time is right lol.
 
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Teald024

TFP Guide
Sorry to hear about the leak. 2” loss in a couple of days sounds like more than evaporation for this time of year. 1/4” per day can be typical.
If the leak becomes hard to find, you could let it drain and see how far down it goes. The draining will stop when it gets to the level of the leaky spot. It may make it easier to find the leak.
You can let it get low in the skimmer if you aren’t running the pump yet.
 

Cgrez33

Active member
Apr 20, 2019
36
College Park, Maryland
Sorry to hear about the leak. 2” loss in a couple of days sounds like more than evaporation for this time of year. 1/4” per day can be typical.
If the leak becomes hard to find, you could let it drain and see how far down it goes. The draining will stop when it gets to the level of the leaky spot. It may make it easier to find the leak.
You can let it get low in the skimmer if you aren’t running the pump yet.
Yeah I figured the same thing. My fear is that it’ll drain down to where it was before I began filling it lol. Below the jets roughly around the area where the shallow end begins to slope into the deep end.

I’m going to keep cleaning the pool and get all the debris out.

I’ll do the bucket test. Then top it off.

Hopefully once I get some clear water going I can see where the water May be getting out of.
 

Cgrez33

Active member
Apr 20, 2019
36
College Park, Maryland
!!!!!Test Results!!!!!

FC: 1.5ppm
CC: 0.5ppm
pH: 8.2
TA: 50
CH: 100ppm
CYA: 0 ?


I tested the CYA twice but both times I could fill it up to the top and had a clear view of the black dot.

Now that I have the test results. How do I proceed?

I’ve also setup a bucket leak test and will post results tomorrow!

Once again thank you all for your great help.
 
Last edited:

nick.simpson19

Well-known member
Apr 15, 2018
47
Daphne Alabama
Have you downloaded the pool math application to your smart phone and put in your test results? the app will tell you exactly what to put into the pool?

You will have to raise your FC to around 4-8 PPM using liquid chlorine (but as your CYA is low you can use SHOCK to raise the FC and the CYA) lower your PH using Muratic Acid to around 7.5. Then check again.
 

jimmythegreek

TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
In The Industry
Aug 10, 2017
1,341
Morris Cnty NJ
Are sure you are doing test right? If that pool water was already in the pool when you got it there has to be CYA in the water. The only way would be if they refilled pool before winterizing and didnt treat the water. It doesn't evaporate it stays with the water not like chlorine that gets used up.
Anyway give us the dimensions of pool and its depths and where it changes we will get you an estimated gallons # from there if no CYA you will add stabilizer which is CYA using the pantyhose or sock method and bo from there. Your FC needs to stay way up at slam level the whole time. Is the 1.8 reading even with you adding a gallon a day?