New Pool Owner Balancing to Convert to SWCG

SwimInTheSun

New member
Apr 9, 2021
4
Leesburg, VA
Pool Size
33000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
I’m a new first time pool owner of a 33,000 gallon in ground plaster pool/spa combo (shared water). I have a Pentair pump, propane heater, and Pentair DE filter. I opened my pool in early April with the help of my local pool store, heard some things that didn’t make sense, happily found this forum, some liquid chlorine, a Taylor K-2006C test kit and the Pool Math app and am on the road to enlightenment.

To simplify maintenance I just ordered a CircuPool RJ-60+ and I’d like some help and a sanity check on my water chemistry before I convert.

Here are my latest test results:
FC: 3.5
CC: 0-0.5
pH: 7
TA: 150
CH: 225
CYA: 90
Salt: 800
Temp: 65

My water is clear. I used two rounds of pool store chlorine tabs before switching to LC and used CalHypo to shock a couple times based on pool store advice. No more tabs will be used. I put my solar cover on last weekend and this week found it was taking a lot of chlorine and my CC rose yesterday to 2, so I put a lot of LC in yesterday, took the cover off today and found lots of tree debris that I’m hoping was the cause of the CC. Now clean and CC is back down.

My CYA level is high but seemingly not outrageous for a SWCG. Water is expensive where I live so I’d rather not, but should I drain some water first to lower it before converting?

My pH is low and TA is high so I’m running a fountain to aerate to raise pH and lower TA. Otherwise I have baking soda or borax to adjust pH.

I have 40 lb of calcium chloride to raise the CH to help my plaster. My pool is about 15 years old and already has some etching of the plaster.

I’m planning to add about 750 lb of salt.

Any recommendations on what I should do differently would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance!
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
25,667
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
You look all set.

Do you have a K-1766 Salt Test kit?

Add salt to get you to 2,800-3,000 ppm, let it circulate for 24 hours, and test your salt level. Then add additional salt slowly in increments. You don't want to overshoot and get a high salt level.
 
Last edited:

SwimInTheSun

New member
Apr 9, 2021
4
Leesburg, VA
Pool Size
33000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Yes I forgot to mention I also got the K-1766 salt test kit. Good advice on coming up to the salt level gradually.
 

needsajet

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 4, 2016
4,927
Sydney, NSW, Australia
Pool Size
44000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
I'll just add to test your salt level before adding any salt. Might only be a few hundred in a new pool, but maybe more.

It doesn't matter much at this stage, but initial salt addition is a great time to verify your pool volume, unless maybe you've already done so by watching the water meter. Knowing the starting salt ppm, the weight of salt added, and your eventual test result, you'll find out for sure what your volume is.
 
  • Like
Reactions: elasipod

SwimInTheSun

New member
Apr 9, 2021
4
Leesburg, VA
Pool Size
33000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Thanks this was a great tip. I had measured my salt before and bought what salt I needed for what Pool Math calculated for my pool volume. I ended up with several bags extra and still ended up at 4000ppm when I was shooting for 3600. I hadn’t thought to work backward to revise my pool volume. But I did and I think what I was told by the sellers was a 33,000 gallon pool is actually more like 28,000 gallons. Good to know.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
25,667
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Pool volume is just another thing that people tend to exaggerate. Trust but verify.
 

needsajet

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 4, 2016
4,927
Sydney, NSW, Australia
Pool Size
44000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
Part of it, I think, is the seller thinking of the volume full up to the brim, without allowing for the waterline being half way down the skimmer throat. Glad it was helpful :)