New owner AZ, first water change

Dirk

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When I did the math on the 3 PPM of FC I need to add should I wait till my CYA is at 30 PPM? Because the math is different depending on CYA. Wait till tomorrow to add Chlorine?
The simplified version: it's the chlorine that protects you and your family and your pool surfaces from nasty bugs and pathogens and algae. It also burns up other harmless organic material in the water (leaves and pollen and whatnot). The CYA doesn't do any of that. The CYA protects the chlorine. It buffers it, stores it in a sense, and shields its degradation caused by the sun. So in essence it allows the chlorine to last longer in your pool. Which in turn makes the chlorine more effective and efficient. So... even though you might not have all the CYA in your pool yet to best protect your chlorine, you still need to have the chlorine in the water to protect YOU, even if you have to add it a little more often until the CYA can take over and do its job.

Simpler still, get the FC up to 3PPM immediately, and do whatcha gotta do to keep it at 3 or above. A little extra FC is better than too little. You must maintain FC regardless of where you are at adding or testing CYA. That last thing you want in a new pool is an algae outbreak, because then you have to add large amounts of chlorine to address that.

Once the CYA shows up in the CYA test, then you refer to the FC/CYA chart to determine if you need to raise your target FC level. Until then, use FC 3 as your bare minimum.

It's cooler now, and the affect of the sun on your chlorine will be somewhat less than it will be next summer, but it can still degrade, so test for FC often at this point, like every day, and replace whatever is missing every day (keep it at 3 or above). As the weather gets cooler, and your CYA takes over, you'll find that it might not drop below 3 as often, so then you can back off on the chlorine additions, and even the testing, until you find a rhythm. And then come Spring, you'll see the reverse, as the weather warms, at which point you'll test more often and add more chlorine. Hope that helps.
 

jake556

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The simplified version: it's the chlorine that protects you and your family and your pool surfaces from nasty bugs and pathogens and algae. It also burns up other harmless organic material in the water (leaves and pollen and whatnot). The CYA doesn't do any of that. The CYA protects the chlorine. It buffers it, stores it in a sense, and shields its degradation caused by the sun. So in essence it allows the chlorine to last longer in your pool. Which in turn makes the chlorine more effective and efficient. So... even though you might not have all the CYA in your pool yet to best protect your chlorine, you still need to have the chlorine in the water to protect YOU, even if you have to add it a little more often until the CYA can take over and do its job.

Simpler still, get the FC up to 3PPM immediately, and do whatcha gotta do to keep it at 3 or above. A little extra FC is better than too little. You must maintain FC regardless of where you are at adding or testing CYA. That last thing you want in a new pool is an algae outbreak, because then you have to add large amounts of chlorine to address that.

Once the CYA shows up in the CYA test, then you refer to the FC/CYA chart to determine if you need to raise your target FC level. Until then, use FC 3 as your bare minimum.

It's cooler now, and the affect of the sun on your chlorine will be somewhat less than it will be next summer, but it can still degrade, so test for FC often at this point, like every day, and replace whatever is missing every day (keep it at 3 or above). As the weather gets cooler, and your CYA takes over, you'll find that it might not drop below 3 as often, so then you can back off on the chlorine additions, and even the testing, until you find a rhythm. And then come Spring, you'll see the reverse, as the weather warms, at which point you'll test more often and add more chlorine. Hope that helps.

That makes sense thank you, so I assume Ill leave my Chlorinator valved out until the CYA comes up and just use liquid chlorine for now. Ballpark how long does it take to bring up the CYA with a sock in the skimmer?
 

Dirk

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Can take up to a week, sometimes more. But that's the way I do it. Many here swear by the "sock in front of the return" method. It's fine. But I had an accident with liquid CYA that left a permanent stain on my brand new plaster. :cry: Still sick about it, so I'll never add CYA directly to the main body of water again.

Granulated CYA is no where near as "dangerous" to a plaster surface as liquid CYA is, but I still won't take the chance. You read another post here that recommended keeping it away from the side of your pool. Same reason. What happens if the sock leaks? Or the string breaks? Or a zombie gets in your pool at night and takes a bite out of the sock while mistaking it for a foot! You don't know!! 😵 OK, all far fetched, but that's the way my brain works. In the skimmer, I figure it can't do much harm, even if it takes longer to show up. What's the hurry, I say?

The CYA can partially dissolve in the skimmer, enough to escape the sock, and then get trapped in your filter for a while, until it dissolves fully. That's why it can take longer to show up on a test when you add it that way. And the other downside is if you clean your filter while the CYA is trapped in it, then you'll lose that CYA. For me, both non-issues. So it takes a little longer. So I don't clean my filter while I'm adding CYA. No biggie.

TFP teaches the best way to do somethings, and a variety of ways to do other things. You decide for yourself which of the latter works for you. Adding CYA is one of those. Some use the sock method, but get in the pool and walk around the pool with it, while squeezing the sock until all the CYA is gone! That works too, and fast, but not much fun this time of year!! And especially bad if a zombie shows up.
 
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CrystalRiver

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Jun 19, 2020
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That makes sense thank you, so I assume Ill leave my Chlorinator valved out until the CYA comes up and just use liquid chlorine for now. Ballpark how long does it take to bring up the CYA with a sock in the skimmer?

Using the chlorinator is likely how your CYA ended up so high in the first place. Chlorine is a gas, it must be bound to something else in order for consumers to handle it. That's either a solid (CYA, calcium, or rarely lithium) or liquid (water). Lithium is super expensive now and used mainly in batteries. The other solid forms also contain other chemicals (CYA or calcium) that will build up in your water and cause problems. That's why TFP recommends liquid chlorine only, or SWCG.

CYA testing might or might not be accurate in 24 hours. Reliable after a week. It takes a while to show up in the test for some reason.
 

jake556

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Using the chlorinator is likely how your CYA ended up so high in the first place. Chlorine is a gas, it must be bound to something else in order for consumers to handle it. That's either a solid (CYA, calcium, or rarely lithium) or liquid (water). Lithium is super expensive now and used mainly in batteries. The other solid forms also contain other chemicals (CYA or calcium) that will build up in your water and cause problems. That's why TFP recommends liquid chlorine only, or SWCG.

CYA testing might or might not be accurate in 24 hours. Reliable after a week. It takes a while to show up in the test for some reason.

I moved into the house in September and they had just a floater with tabs, I installed the chlorinator to have better control/ chlorination. I understand using tabs will eventually raise my CYA where I will have to dump the pool again. Curious if it will be that or the hardness that creeps up the fastest being that i’m starting with 375 CH from the tap. I appreciate the info
 

jake556

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Water finally got high enough to run the pump, with a clean filter, and tossed the sock with approx 2.25 LBS of CYA (0-30PPM) in the skimmer, gave it a few good squeezes after about 30 minutes and you can really see the CYA coming out of the sock this definitely will speed up the release.

Also added 44 oz of 10% Liquid Chlorine (0-3 PPM FC), Ill check my readings tomorrow, thank you all for the help.
 

mknauss

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Every 8 oz tablet adds 4.6 ppm FC and 2.8 ppm CYA. Your CH will climb to 800 ppm or so every two years or so. Your CYA will climb to unmanagable levels in a month or so during the summer.
 

jake556

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Every 8 oz tablet adds 4.6 ppm FC and 2.8 ppm CYA. Your CH will climb to 800 ppm or so every two years or so. Your CYA will climb to unmanagable levels in a month or so during the summer.

So would leaving the Chlorinator valved out for now and just use liquid chlorine be my best bet? Then when we leave for vacation etc use the chlorinator? I heard that was the biggest pain with liquid chlorine is you have to add it everyday and if you leave you are kind of screwed.
 

CrystalRiver

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Jun 19, 2020
460
Massachusetts
So would leaving the Chlorinator valved out for now and just use liquid chlorine be my best bet? Then when we leave for vacation etc use the chlorinator? I heard that was the biggest pain with liquid chlorine is you have to add it everyday and if you leave you are kind of screwed.
That's exactly the best use. Liquid when you are home, tabs in your chlorinator if you go away. By managing your CYA directly, you can keep your CYA on the lower end of acceptable, in order to have room to use tabs once in a while.

CYA does gradually break down in a pool, as well as being lost through splash-out and backwashing, so as long as you aren't using the tablets constantly, you'll be fine. Since you have hard water already, you'll want to be sure to use dichlor or trichlor and not calcium hypochlorite tablets when you do use a tablet.
 
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Dirk

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It's too soon in your learning curve to introduce the myriad of details, but I see two of my own initial "wonderings" in some of your posts: which chemical will first drive a water exchange and how do I deal with a pool when I'm not home for a week or two. Suffice to say I tackled these challenges head on and solved each. And mind you, each of those two challenges have multiple "sub-challenges" to address. I've got it down now. I've learned here separate solutions for the accumulation of CYA, CH and salt (don't forget about that one), so I am currently on track to never have to replace water because of chemical accumulation (so far so good, three years in). And I've figured out how to leave my pool for up to two weeks at a time and come back to perfectly balanced water. Not bragging (OK, bragging a little) but pointing out it is possible for you to learn how to get all this under your thumb, whenever you're ready... There's no such thing as a maintenance free pool, but I'm close...
 
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jake556

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That's exactly the best use. Liquid when you are home, tabs in your chlorinator if you go away. By managing your CYA directly, you can keep your CYA on the lower end of acceptable, in order to have room to use tabs once in a while.

CYA does gradually break down in a pool, as well as being lost through splash-out and backwashing, so as long as you aren't using the tablets constantly, you'll be fine. Since you have hard water already, you'll want to be sure to use dichlor or trichlor and not calcium hypochlorite tablets when you do use a tablet.

Awesome that sounds like a plan! Ill checkout the tabs I’m using an make sure they are dichlor or trichlor thanks for looking out.

It's too soon in your learning curve to introduce the myriad of details, but I see two of my own initial "wonderings" in some of your posts: which chemical will first drive a water exchange and how do I deal with a pool when I'm not home for a week or two. Suffice to say I tackled these challenges head on and solved each. And mind you, each of those two challenges have multiple "sub-challenges" to address. I've got it down now. I've learned here separate solutions for the accumulation of CYA, CH and salt (don't forget about that one), so I am currently on track to never have to replace water because of chemical accumulation (so far so good, three years in). And I've figured out how to leave my pool for up to two weeks at a time and come back to perfectly balanced water. Not bragging (OK, bragging a little) but pointing out it is possible for you to learn how to get all this under your thumb, whenever you're ready... There's no such thing as a maintenance free pool, but I'm close...

That is awesome! That is the goal for me! Would love to get to that point someday. Just don’t have the resources yet for a SWCG but its on the back burner.
 

jake556

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Tested the water this morning for PH and FC and they look good.
7.6 PH
3 FC

Squeezed sock with CYA a few times, pump is on high 24/7 currently should it stay that way until the CYA is up to 30 PPM? When should I test for CYA next?
 

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mknauss

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You can run your pump at low speed. No real reason to run on high speed unless you have a specific function that needs that flow rate.

I would wait until Wednesday at least before testing CYA. This time of year there is less UV impact on the pool water.
 
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jake556

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You can run your pump at low speed. No real reason to run on high speed unless you have a specific function that needs that flow rate.

I would wait until Wednesday at least before testing CYA. This time of year there is less UV impact on the pool water.

Awesome ill do that, can I also lower the run time or keep it at 24 hours for now? I have been running on low speed for 8 hrs per day in the past, still learning about the right amount of pump time.

What do you recommend for run time foes it matter? I have heard run during the day when the sunlight is out? Not sure if that is accurate. I try to work around my power companies peak/ off peak hours for cost.
 

mknauss

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You run the pump for a couple reasons. In your case, you need to run the pump long enough to mix in the chemicals you add. That is about an hour each time you add chemicals. The next reason is to skim the surface. That depends on what debris you get each day. Last is to filter the water, which typically needs little run time. Do you have a pool cleaner or robot? That can impact pump run time also.

Right now, you can run your pump just a few hours per day. But if you have CYA in the skimmer, run the pump until it is fully dissolved. It is slightly acidic and leaving it in the skimmer without the pump running creates an acidic stew that is not good for your equipment.

Definitely run the pump around your TOU electric rates. Time of day to run the pump really does not matter much.
 

jake556

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You run the pump for a couple reasons. In your case, you need to run the pump long enough to mix in the chemicals you add. That is about an hour each time you add chemicals. The next reason is to skim the surface. That depends on what debris you get each day. Last is to filter the water, which typically needs little run time. Do you have a pool cleaner or robot? That can impact pump run time also.

Right now, you can run your pump just a few hours per day. But if you have CYA in the skimmer, run the pump until it is fully dissolved. It is slightly acidic and leaving it in the skimmer without the pump running creates an acidic stew that is not good for your equipment.

Definitely run the pump around your TOU electric rates. Time of day to run the pump really does not matter much.

Got it Ill run the pump until the CYA is dissolved makes sense.

I have a bunch of trees around the pool/ in my yard where Im pulling out leaves daily from the skimmer and with a net.

I do have a hose attached vacuum that roams around the pool

I would like to nail down the pump on/off time eventually, Im assume the hours change from Summer to Winter etc....

Thank you for the information you have been a huge help!
 

Dirk

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Chemicals get mixed in pretty quickly. Sounds like in your case the leaves will be the determining factor. Run the pump within the best hours for energy cost, and maybe after the leaves fall in the pool (is that afternoon?). Or you might like running it first thing in the early morning, so your surface is nice and clean for the day. You just keep dialing down the runtime by, say 30 minutes each day. At some point you'll start to notice the pool floor or the surface or the clarity is not to your liking. That's your threshold. So you bump the runtime back up a notch at a time until the pool is clean enough for your standards. That's about all there is to it. If that's even just a couple hours that's plenty of time for mixing in chemicals.

I alter my runtime by the seasons, but that's because my runtime is governed by either my SWG runtime needs or my solar heater, neither of which I run in winter. Without either of those things, your runtime might be governed by when the leaves fall. Every pool is different.
 
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jake556

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One question I got is I added chlorine yesterday evening to bring up my FC from 2 to 4 now I just read a 3 FC.

Should I add chlorine now to go up to a 4 or wait and add till Im back below 3?
 

mknauss

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Follow the FC/CYA Chart

Add chlorine to raise the FC to the upper target range.
 
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