New pool owner and member


Active member
Jun 27, 2007
Heber Springs, Arkansas
Hello. 8)

We bought a home this past winter that has a 23' above ground pool.

We were not able to move in until this month, and since it was 400 miles from our previous home, what maintenance that I have done was sporadic and on the weekends.

I started with trichlor pucks and cal-hypo shock.

After we moved into the house, I discovered and the BBB method, which I wish that I had known about back in May. :( After messing around on that forum for a couple of weeks and finally figuring out that the Admin wasn't going to answer my request for registration, I found this site through a thread on that forum. So, here I am!

I have got a lot of the debris out of our pool, but can't seem to get my chemicals right.

I have one of the Wally world 5 way test kits.

Here are my current readings.

Cl 2
pH very low, below the 6.8 color on my kit
TA 10

I am having difficulty getting my pH up, and getting my chlorine up.

I added 2 gallons of bleach a couple of hours ago, I am going to let it circulate overnight and test it at sunup, before the sun kills it all. I have tried trichlor and cal-hypo shock prior to switching to BBB, but have never been able to get the chlorine to shock levels.

I have added an entire box of Borax, 1/3 last night, the other 2/3 tonight. Hopefully my pH will look better in the morning. I also added 2 lbs of Alkalinity Up that I bought before I found out about BBB.

Since I am having problems with chlorination, I am keeping a huge puck (4.5" with a hole in the middle) in the skimmer basket to try and help my bleach and have some chlorination in the daytime.

Should I be running the pump 24/7 so that the puck will keep my chlorination happening in the daytime? I normally turn on my pump and add my chems after the sun goes down and let it run all night.

My water is looking better, but it is still cloudy. I have vacuumed twice, and brushed twice. I have an issue with water pressure in my home, so when I vacuum out to waste, it takes me 12 - 16 hours to fill the pool back up to skimmer level.:(

And now that I have changed jobs and moved, I am cash poor until July 7, so i am going to have to do what I can with the chemicals I have until then.

Here is what I have left.

5 gallons of 6% Ultra Walmart bleach
1 box of Borax
2 1/2 lbs of Alkalinity Up
5 giant trichlor pucks
3 lbs of CYA
3 lbs of PH down (like I need that!)

Help me with my startup, tell me if I have enough chems to be swimming by this weekend, and if I can stretch them until July 6.



Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Apr 4, 2007
SW Indiana
Guessing your pool at about 13,500 gallons. If that's not accurate, adjust accordingly.

The two jugs of 6% should have added about 6.7ppm to your reading. If it held overnight, you might have the organics under control. If not, I'd go ahead and add 4 jugs of the 6% (Notice that they are 0.75 Gallons each) and run the filter continuously until it clears up as a start. This will get you to shock level. If you have algae, the pool will consume chlorine like crazy, and it would be normal to go through several jugs of bleach a day until it's under control. With no CYA, you'll lose chlorine to the sun too, which will make it worse.

You'll probably need all three pounds of CYA and maybe a little more to keep the chlorine from burning off during the day. It takes several days for the CYA to dissolve, and the best way is to put it in sock in the skimmer. Brush or vacuum the pool daily and remove any debris you can.

I doubt you have enough chlorine to get through next week. Walmart ultra bleach at $1.28 is about the best deal you'll find.

Pucks in the skimmer are a bad idea because they are so acidic, but you can get away with it if you never turn the pump off.

If you are on city water, there should be an adjustment at the meter to turn the pressure up. Easy to do.


Active member
Jun 27, 2007
Heber Springs, Arkansas

Thanks for the replies.

First, the jugs of bleach that I have are the large ones, I think that they are 1.5 or 1.75 gallons each. They are the $2.24 ones, not the $1.28 ones.

I think that my pressure regulator for my water needs to be replaced. It is turned all the way up, and my water pressure is dismal. I will have to live with the low water pressure probably until August.

I can probably by some more Walmart bleach next Tuesday. Maybe what I have will last until then, I don't know.

So, I will run the pump 24/7, use my liquid bleach for shocking, and rely on the pucks for steady chlorine until I can get more bleach next week.

Does that sound like it might work?

I probably shouldn't stick my CYA in a sock in the skimmer with a trichlor puck in there, correct?

So, for CYA, I guess the best option would be to brush and vac the pool one more time, backwash my filter, and then add the CYA through the skimmer before putting another puck in, correct?

I know not to backwash the filter for at least a week if I add the CYA through the skimmer.

Any other advice from any of the other experts is welcome. :)

The Mermaid Queen

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Mar 28, 2007
Northern KY
Put the CYA in a sock and tie it to your ladder. Then you can backwash as usual.

Remember, if you are going to keep a puck in the skimmer, you need to run your pump 24/7, or you risk damaging your equipment when you turn your pump on and the concentrated solution goes through.


Active member
Jun 27, 2007
Heber Springs, Arkansas
Cool. I will tie the CYA sock to the ladder. Our skimmer and return are on the other side of the pool from the ladder, but we should still get the CYA distributed, correct?

And I hear everybody on the pucks. I will leave my pump running 24/7 until I no longer need the pucks.

I know that running my pump 24/7 uses more electricity, and probably slightly shortens the life of the motor, but it doesn't have any adverse effects on my water quality to circulate that much, does it?

The Mermaid Queen

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Mar 28, 2007
Northern KY
The CYA will dissolve a bit faster if you could have it near the return, but as long as your water is moving, it will distribute.

Your water will be just fine circulating that much. Also, you want to circulate your water as much as possible to get the CYA dissolved faster.

If you must keep a puck in the pool, invest a few bucks for a floater... then you won't have to run your pump all the time, and will save the electricity. Just take the floater out when the pump is off to avoid bleaching of your liner wherever the floater settles.