New pool owner of a house that was foreclosed - figuring out the puzzle :)

sambot

Active member
Jun 1, 2018
35
WV
Hi from West Virginia! My husband (user Crepes) and I recently bought & moved into a home that was a foreclosure. That mean no disclosure about the pool!
So far we learned that the old sand filter was busted, so I am currently installing a new Hayward sand filter.
Pump is pretty new and good though!

Here is a pic of our very green pool currently as we work through the process. Not a very pretty sight!
20180614_135830.jpg

Unfortunately the pool wasn't closed properly - however it is a miracle that all the plumbing seems to be in good working order (aside from the old sand filter)

We have had the house for about a month now, and with the plumbing inside being all sorts of messed up (from people not winterizing until MARCH - what??) the pool has been on the back burner.
Trying to get it up an running this weekend! Well, at least START
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
I personally do not like the color (hue) of that water. It screams metals to me (iron and/or copper), not just algae. Maybe it's the image and how I see it on my computer. If it were me, based on the unknown history of the pool, I'd do a healthy water exchange. You're already a step ahead of the game by replacing the filter and sand. Are you on a well? Hopefully not, but if you are then I'd look into getting as much water trucked-in as I could to avoid the iron nightmare. You have a TF-100 or Taylor K-2006C test kit correct? If not, I'd get one right away (link below) so you're ready to perform a SLAM Process once you are ready.
 

sambot

Active member
Jun 1, 2018
35
WV
Maybe the picture is misleading - it really seems a little more green than it is in real life! Lol


We have a test kit but my husband was the one to do it, here is what he had as results:

CL < 5 (water was basically clear)
PH < 6.8 (water turned yellow)
TA = 0 (Added two drops R-0007 in a running Speedstir. Added five drops R-0008. Water turned red immediately, never green)
CYA 70-80, assuming I'm doing this one right.

- - - Updated - - -

Also, is there a way to check if there is iron in the water?
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
I'm surprised to hear the CYA is that high after obtaining a foreclosed home. Just to be safe, compare these tips to how you tested:
CYA Testing:
Proper lighting is critical for the CYA test, so you want to test for CYA outside on a bright sunny day. Use the mixing bottle to gently mix the required amounts of pool water and R-0013 reagent, let sit for 30 seconds, then gently mix again. Recommend standing outside with your back to the sun and the view tube in the shade of your body at waist level. Then, begin squirting the mixed solution into the skinny tube. Watch the black dot until it completely disappears. Once it disappears, record the CYA reading. To help the eyes and prevent staring at the dot, some people find it better to pour & view in stages. Pour some solution into the viewing tube, look away, then look back again for the dot. Repeat as necessary until you feel the dot is gone. After the first CYA test, you can pour the mixed solution from the skinny view tube back to the mixing bottle, gently shake, and do the same test a second, third, or fourth time to instill consistency in your technique, become more comfortable with the testing, and validate your own CYA reading.
The TA test will turns green when you add the 5 drops of R-0008. Next you have to add/count the drops of R-0009 to make it Barbie pink. Please check that again and confirm. The pH is definitely too low, but it would be good to know the true TA first before proceeding.

- - - Updated - - -

About the only way to get a ballpark number for metals is the pool store. It's not usually economical for us to purchase a product to test iron or copper. But if they do a free test, just say thanks and leave. :)
 

Crepes

Member
May 31, 2018
19
Wheeling, WV
We will test the CYA a few more times. It was hard for me to get that right. I went inside to do it because it was hard to differentiate the black dot from the reflection of my head in the sun lol.

For the TA test however, I did that one correctly. Added two drops of R-0007 (I believe that was the number), mixed, then added five drops of R-0008 and mixed. Immediately pink.
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Okay, so before we go much further, I just realized that you haven't started your system yet right? Water not mixed? So let's hold-off on any large chemical assumptions until you can mix the water for at least 30 minutes. If after that the TA is still registering low and the pH below 7.0, I would I would start by adding baking soda to get the TA moving again - at least to about 50-60. That should help the pH as well, but confirm that too. Since you don't want to overshoot your TA and go too high, I would recommend using the PoolMath to add enough baking soda to increase the TA in about 10-20 ppm increments. Add some, let it mix for about 30 minutes, then re-test until you get the TA to about 50-60. Then re-test the pH and we can fine tune it from there.

Let's get those straight before anything else. Now if you chose to exchange some water first, that's fine. Do that THEN do the TA/pH adjustments I mentioned. I don't want you to waste products if they're going to spill right out into the yard. :)
 

frustratedpoolmom

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
May 20, 2007
12,250
Key West, FL
We will test the CYA a few more times. It was hard for me to get that right. I went inside to do it because it was hard to differentiate the black dot from the reflection of my head in the sun lol.

For the TA test however, I did that one correctly. Added two drops of R-0007 (I believe that was the number), mixed, then added five drops of R-0008 and mixed. Immediately pink.
The CYA test MUST be done OUTSIDE (sun vs. clouds is ideal). Turn your back to the sun and hold the vial waste high. You will not get an accurate reading indoors.

You can pour the solution back into the mixing bottle, and repeat several times until you are confident with the results.

Get some arm and hammer washing soda from the laundry aisle. That will raise BOTH your ph and alk. Use the Pool Calculator to determine amount. Then you will add and let it mix for several hours, and then you can tweak the pH and the ALK with Baking Soda and Borax. But you should get that fixed first before you start to SLAM.

I've seen that color green for algae plenty of times. It doesn't indicate metal to me necessarily, more often if it's a greenish/yellow tint to clear water that tells me iron, and then I'll add a sequesterant.

- - - Updated - - -

Oh and I would run your filter on recirculate instead of filter. Adjust the chems and SLAM on recirculate and then once you see the color changes and the algae is dying off and settling to the bottom you can turn it to filter.
 

sambot

Active member
Jun 1, 2018
35
WV
Hi everybody! I got my new Hayward filter installed. We are ready to get this swamp cleaned up!

Cya 60
Doesn't appear to be any chlorine
Ta didn't turn green with the r008, it just turned red
I checked the calcium and it seemed high at 800 PPM
PH seemed like it wasn't even 6.8 because it was really yellow

We vacuumed to waste some last night. I still need to make sure I can get some more debris out. I guess I need to go buy a bunch of gallons of chlorine now.

What is the best advice for me to proceed

- - - Updated - - -

Sorry just reread all the comments about ta and pH. Looks like we need to get some baking soda
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Before you add the baking soda, I need to ask …. are you sure about that CH? 800 is really high. Maybe not so much for areas out west, but I'm surprised to see yours that high unless the pool was constantly bombarded with cal-hypo - which is a strong possibility. Have you tried a CH test on your tap water? The reason I ask about the CH is that if you wanted to exchange some water to lower both the CH and CYA (which is the only way to lower them), now is the time to do it. Just rip that band-aid off and change a good amount of water - maybe 50-75% or so. It should lower the CYA and CH, and also help the SLAM go a bit faster once you refill. Thoughts?
 

sambot

Active member
Jun 1, 2018
35
WV
I read that calcium hardness didn't matter so much. Our water does have calcium in it.

I actually already put the baking soda in and the TA is now up to 70.

My next question is how to get the ph up. It's light yellow on the test. Should I use Borax or washing soda?

Is the cya level too high?
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Since the TA is in a good place, you can use Borax and/or aeration. CH isn't an issue in vinyl pools when low, but it can be an issue for any pool when high. Your CYA is good for summer, but a little elevated for a SLAM. Not the worst thing at all, just means maintaining a little higher FC level for the SLAM is all (more bleach). So you can proceed either way you like, I just wanted to make sure you knew your options. We'll be watching for any other questions. Good luck!
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
33,381
Laughlin, NV
Too high of CH matters no matter what type of pool you have.

Test your fill water for CH. If low, do what Pat says and exchange some water. Your CYA is too high for a non-SWCG pool.
 

PoolguyinCT

In The Industry
Jul 21, 2014
3,077
Connecticut
New pool owner of a house that was foreclosed - figuring out the puzzle ?

Old steel wall heldor pool.. don’t step on the coping it’s blind bolted underneath, if you step on it & here a pop- things won’t be fun!
 
Last edited:

sambot

Active member
Jun 1, 2018
35
WV
I will probably not drain my pool this summer, if that is possible. Our water is pretty hard - our faucets tend to show that. I can test our tap water today.
 

sambot

Active member
Jun 1, 2018
35
WV
OK I have a pretty simple question. When scooping gunk out of the pool, where do you all put it??? In a pile someplace in the yard, the garbage? Where?