new pool with PB telling me minimal chlorine and no stabilizer - advice welcome

abehep

Silver Supporter
Jul 11, 2015
16
Hurricane, Utah
#1
Hello all. I'm a first time pool owner receiving no help from my pool builder for the startup. I assume this is traditional startup. I just filled up my new pool last Friday/Saturday March 11. When it was full, PB came over and dumped a gallon of Startup-Tec treatment that he said helps prevent and remove calcium/plaster dust. Then he gave me a brush and put the suction vacuum in the pool and tried to start the filter VS pump. He usually installs single speed pumps, but I insisted on a variable speed pump. When he couldn't figure out how to turn it on, he told me to call Pentair's technical support.
I was able to get the filter pump going. I called PB back and he basically told me I didn't need to add anything to the pool. I just needed to keep brushing and keep the pump running 24/7 for the first few weeks. I questioned him about adding muriatic acid and chlorine. He told me not to worry about it.
I've never had a swimming pool before, but have been reading up a lot on this wonderful site for over a year while our pool was getting built. So I'm very concerned about the PB's advice so far.
I tested the water on 3-12-17 for the first time with the following results:
FC 0
CC Not tested
PH 8.2
TA 200
CH 350
CYA not tested
water temp 65 deg

on 3-13-2017:

I added 100 oz of muriatic acid

Pool builder dropped off some trichlor tabs and told me to put 4 in the skimmer basket which I did.

on 3-14-2017:

FC .5
CC not tested
PH 8.2
TA not tested
CH not tested
CYA not tested
I added 3 pints of muriatic acid


on 3-15-2017:

FC .3
CC not tested
PH 8.0
TA 160
CH 250-275
CYA not tested
water temp 62 deg F

on 3-16-17:

FC 1
CC 0.5
PH 8.1
TA 180
CH 275-300 ( It is hard to tell on test)
CYA less than 20 ( I could see the dot clearly with the tube filled up completely)
water temp 63 deg F

on 3-17-17:

the autocover was installed today and is currently covering pool. 3HP filter pump is still running at 3000 rpm.


Where to begin? :)
First, do I need to be adding liquid chlorine to get the FC up to 3+?
second, should I get some CYA and put in skimmer basket ?

Any advice or suggestions would be very welcome.

Thanks,
 

Attachments

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
36,646
Tallahassee, FL
#2
This is where you have to weigh what the PB has told you and what you have learned from TFP. Lets talk about the ins and outs:

-PB holds the warranty card- How often is he or someone for him coming out to test the water? For how long?

Depending on the answers you can decide where to go from here. I think the PB is using the pucks to add FC and CYA. That is the slow way to add both.

How was our pool "started"? Did they pour muriatic acid on the plaster the day of or just after the plaster?

I will wait for your answers to go any further.

Kim:kim:
 
OP
OP
A

abehep

Silver Supporter
Jul 11, 2015
16
Hurricane, Utah
#3
Hi Kim,
PB isn't coming out to test the pool water. As far as he is concerned, I think I'm on my own now. As far as the construction side, I think they have done a good job. The pool chemistry side and maintenance knowledge seems to be lacking in all our previous conversations. He gave me a test kit and a partial bucket of Trichlor. It's hard to believe that there really is no pool school or training. If it wasn't for TFP, I would really be lost and upset. At this point, I've just accepted the fact that the pool maintenance is all up to me.

That is why i'm saying I believe it is a traditional start up. He has not added anything other than that Startup Tec product (Startup-Tec - New and remodeled pool startup treatment.) the day the pool was filled. I looked it up and I'm not sure what is in it. The brochure says that it helps reduce plaster dust and is acid and phosphate free. The PB usually installs tablet feeders and really tried to change my mind about installing the salt cell system.
I have added some muriatic acid as stated in my post when I tested the ph above 8.0.

I've tried to ask my PB what he recommends, but I am not getting any straight definitive answers actually i'm not getting hardly any answers. I honestly think he doesn't know or care. In typical traditional pool start ups, is CYA is introduced within the 1st week? if using the pucks for the first 4 weeks is ok until I start my salt cell, then I'm fine with that.
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
36,646
Tallahassee, FL
#4
Well then here you go! This link is all about how to start up new plaster. Please note the no swimming for 30 days is for the not for the start up your pool had so.......cannon ball!!!!

Pool School - Start-up New Plaster

Here is a set of links I put together for new pool owners. It is a lot of info so take it slow and easy.

Print these out:
Pool School - Basic Pool Care Schedule

Pool School - Recommended Levels

Bookmark these:
Pool School - Recommended Pool Chemicals

http://www.troublefreepool.com/calc.html

Pool School - ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

Make sure to ask any and all questions you might have no matter how small! We have all been where you are at one point.

Kim:kim:
 

bmoreswim

Gold Supporter
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 16, 2012
4,376
Central MD
#5
Kim's got ya here. But don't look at being on your own as a negative. It's a positive. It will now be done right because you will do it. No wondering what the PB is or is not doing.
 

Nursenini

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Sep 22, 2015
2,122
Bixby, Ok
#8
Welcome to TFP!! Love your pool! So pretty and refreshing looking!

Kim's got you well covered! Just follow those links and you'll be golden!
 
OP
OP
A

abehep

Silver Supporter
Jul 11, 2015
16
Hurricane, Utah
#9
Thanks for the info Kim.

I put in 4 lbs of CYA in a sock and a few days ago. I tested yesterday and here are the results:

3-20-17:
FC 3
CC 0
PH 7.5
CH 325
TA 190
CYA ??
pool temp 66 deg

two questions:

First, after adding CYA and testing, I could still see the dot but test water was much more cloudy. maybe the test tube is not real accurate for CYA under 20?

Second, on the TA test. do I record the number of drops when the solution turns pink or completely red? I started to add extra drops and it seemed to stay the same when it got to the deeper red.


other than that how to my test results look? How about the TA at 190? Should I start to try to lower that now?

Thanks

- - - Updated - - -

Thanks Nurseini. we are really excited - especially after almost 11 months contstruction wait!!
 

salty87

Gold Supporter
Jan 31, 2017
147
Texas Hill Country
#11
...At this point, I've just accepted the fact that the pool maintenance is all up to me...


I've tried to ask my PB what he recommends, but I am not getting any straight definitive answers actually i'm not getting hardly any answers. I honestly think he doesn't know or care...
Can't speak for anyone else's builder but mine was the exact same way. Stick with the friendly helpful folks here and you'll be much better off anyway.
 

triptyx

TFP Guide
Apr 12, 2016
1,485
Tucson, AZ
#12
Thanks for the info Kim.
two questions:

First, after adding CYA and testing, I could still see the dot but test water was much more cloudy. maybe the test tube is not real accurate for CYA under 20?

Second, on the TA test. do I record the number of drops when the solution turns pink or completely red? I started to add extra drops and it seemed to stay the same when it got to the deeper red.


other than that how to my test results look? How about the TA at 190? Should I start to try to lower that now?
Correct. Below 20 the readings don't work very well. If you're still below 20, add enough via PoolMath to go from 20-30 and then retest. You don't want to overshoot!

Your higher TA is relevant mainly for scaling and how fast your pH rises. You'll definitely want to begin lowering it when you have time.