New to pool ownership, water help needed

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
New to pool care. Water test results below.
2 FC - Free Chlorine
2 CC or TC - Combined Chlorine or Total Chlorine
8.0 pH -
130 TA - Total Alkalinity
250 CH - Calcium Hardness
25 CYA - Cyanuric Acid (stabilizer/conditioner)

I added muriatic acid and the pH is now 7.6
I got the water tested at Leslie's and also used test strips and pH test kit. Getting a better test kit (read the forum for great advice).
I forgot to put in my signature this is a salt water pool.

What do I do next? In reading the forum I see several suggestions, running waterfalls to aerate to start bringing down TA. Keep watching pH, add MA as needed. What do I do about CYA, when, how, and what order. I kinda understand the details of the water care listed here but am not at all confident in my understanding. I have looked over the pool calculator, but not quite sure how to use it.
Thanks in advance for the advice.
 

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
oops,
It should read TC 2, corrections below. And the water looks fine to me. The water temp is around 92 during the day, it's been hot in Houston.

2 FC - Free Chlorine
2 TC - Combined Chlorine or Total Chlorine
8.0 pH -
130 TA - Total Alkalinity
250 CH - Calcium Hardness
25 CYA - Cyanuric Acid (stabilizer/conditioner)
 

woodyp

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 17, 2010
11,007
East Texas
Assuming you already have salt in the pool and the level is good for your SWG. Raise CYA level to 60-80 ppm and get your FC up a bit higher.
 

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
woodyp, I should have put in the salt level with the other information, I am learning. It is at 3200. The water looks and feels great. I am not sure how to raise the CYA level. I guess I should raise the FC by either setting the SWG to superchlorinate or set it at a higher percentage or longer run time. Do I have all this correct? There is so much information on this site and I am definitely a beginner in pool care. It is overwhelming and I am confused.
 

Butterfly

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 30, 2007
10,045
South Carolina
What do I do next? In reading the forum I see several suggestions, running waterfalls to aerate to start bringing down TA. Keep watching pH, add MA as needed. What do I do about CYA, when, how, and what order. I kinda understand the details of the water care listed here but am not at all confident in my understanding. I have looked over the pool calculator, but not quite sure how to use it.
Thanks in advance for the advice.
Keep your FC Edit: [s:1344sdc1]now lower than[/s:1344sdc1] NO LOWER THAN 3 for now.

There are some directions for use of the PoolCalculator.com in Pool School. Play around with it until you feel comfortable.
When you are figuring your doses and want confirmation, simply post back here in this thread and someone will be around to help :wink:

Yep, as woodyp said, you should raise your CYA to 70 or 80.

We suggest you add the granular CYA to a sock and tie it off in front of a return or place it in the skimmer (do not block water flow).
24 hours after you add the CYA, assume it is in the water and adjust your FC levels accordingly.

For lowering the TA: Every time your pH reaches 7.6, use muriatic acid to lower your pH down to 7.2.
Over time, your TA will come down. Muriatic Acid lowers both pH and TA, but aeration only raises pH.
You can speed up the TA lowering process if you want. See full directions in Pool School.
 

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
Thanks Butterfly,
Keeping FC below 3. I am going to play around with the Pool Calculator and then if I have questions, will post. I need to buy CYA, is this a Walmart, Big Box, or just Leslie's item. Am I correct in assuming that using the Pool Calculator I will know how much CYA I need to get. Question, while CYA is getting into pool during 24 hrs. do I need to run the pump the entire time? I will keep checking pH and adding muriatic acid when needed. This forum is so helpful. I am grateful for the step by step.
Chris
 

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
Ok, I input to the pool calculator and got this

CYA
Goal: 70 to 80
Add by weight 125 oz, or by volume of stabilizer 130 oz.
or add of liquid stabilizer 324 oz.
To lower CYA you replace of the water with new water.
Note: It can take solid stabilizer up to a week to dissolve. It will also lower your pH.

So I add the 125 oz stabilizer to sock, put into skimmer, I have 2 skimmers, I assume I can make 2 socks and use both skimmers. Running pump entire time.

Continue keeping pH below 7.6, adding muriatic acid to bring down to 7.2. I am going to run the waterfalls, which you said will aerate, raising pH, allowing me to then add more muriatic acid, thereby helping to lower TA.

I am on a mission. Thanks to everyone for sharing, will post results again later.
 

anonapersona

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Nov 5, 2008
2,598
Note that CYA will lower pH also. Check the bottom of Pool Calculator, Effects of adding Chemicals. Find the pH drop from the amount of CYA. Know that before you adjust pH with acid. Also, retest TA to be sure of acid volume to adjust pH, it matters.
 

Butterfly

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 30, 2007
10,045
South Carolina
Taylor1584 said:
Thanks Butterfly,
Keeping FC below 3. I am going to play around with the Pool Calculator and then if I have questions, will post. I need to buy CYA, is this a Walmart, Big Box, or just Leslie's item. Am I correct in assuming that using the Pool Calculator I will know how much CYA I need to get. Question, while CYA is getting into pool during 24 hrs. do I need to run the pump the entire time? I will keep checking pH and adding muriatic acid when needed. This forum is so helpful. I am grateful for the step by step.
Chris
I made a typo, now corrected in my previous post about the FC. Do not let it get LOWER THAN 3!

IOW, 3 is your minimum FC level.

Good job/plan on the pH and CYA. :goodjob:
 

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
Thanks, will keep FC no lower than 3. Yesterday afternoon I added muriatic acid and the pH went to 7.2pH. I ran the 3 waterfalls all night. This morning it went to 8.0+pH. I used the pool calculator, the input chemicals at the bottom and it said to add 60 oz. of muriatic acid, which I did. I am going to recheck the pH soon. I have not yet purchased the CYA (stabilizer) but will do that later today or tomorrow morning. Am I correct that will all this going on I want the pumps on 24 hrs. a day till things get settled out?
 

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
Just checked the pH again, it is now at 7.8. Will use pool calculator and add more muriatic acid. Added the acid. I am off to purchase more acid and stabilizer and will take a water sample to be checked to see what Leslie's results are. Will post all results again later.
 

Butterfly

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 30, 2007
10,045
South Carolina
Taylor1584 said:
Thanks, will keep FC no lower than 3. Yesterday afternoon I added muriatic acid and the pH went to 7.2pH. I ran the 3 waterfalls all night. This morning it went to 8.0+pH. I used the pool calculator, the input chemicals at the bottom and it said to add 60 oz. of muriatic acid, which I did. I am going to recheck the pH soon. I have not yet purchased the CYA (stabilizer) but will do that later today or tomorrow morning. Am I correct that will all this going on I want the pumps on 24 hrs. a day till things get settled out?
Yes, keep pump running 24/7.

Do you have the CYA added yet?
 

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
Hi Butterfly,

I will keep pump running. I have not added the CYA Yet. Just returned from Leslie's to get water checked there and full report. I had checked the pH right before taking in water sample, I got 7.2pH. 20 minutes later, these are Leslie's test results

Test results from Leslies and their statement of condition
FAC 3 OK (prev. 2)
TAC 3 OK (prev. 2)
Salt 3500 High
CH 280 OK (prev. 250)
CYA 40 OK Leslie's said 30-99 is the range for salt pool (prev. 25)
TA 110 OK Leslie's said 80-120 (prev. 130)
pH 7.5

According to Leslie's I don't need any conditioner and TA is fine. I mentioned adding acid to lower pH and then aerating to raise pH, and repeating to slowly lower TA. They had never heard of that. I am inclined to listen to this forum as it seems to me that there is much more experience and knowledge here. Eventually, I would like to get to BBB, but moving slowly so that I understand the process. If that will simplify the process so I am not having to handle muriatic acid every other day or so, as Leslie's says I will have to do because salt pools are just like that. So what's the next step. I am running the pumps and water falls, which should raise the pH so tomorrow I will test pH, need to add acid and that will lower pH and lower a little more the TA. How far should I go with this cycle to get the TA down and what should the TA be? Do I still need to add for CYA.

Still on a mission. Thanks

Oh, and Leslie's want me to buy Natural Chemistry Products, especially something called Purge.
 

anonapersona

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Nov 5, 2008
2,598
Gee, is there any other pool store you can go to? I get so tired of clerks getting all their education from the labels on the bottles on the shelf. Happens in fish stores all the time.

Where to begin.

First, bravo, you lowered TA by 20 ppm with that acid and aeration. As expected, 10 to 20 ppm each time. So repeat when you have the time with the aim of getting to maybe 90 and seeing how pH reacts then. If it still drifts up, push the TA down again this way. When it gets past 90 you can just see if normal pH adjustments cause it to lower enough. Of course, rain will lower it and tap water may raise it so you have to watch. Mine is very stable at 60-70 and though I don't have salt I do have a spillover spa and waterfall.

As for salt being high or low, what does the owners manual say for the levels? Go to the source.

Yes, you need the CYA. You said the water looks great, so do check around the nooks and cranies for algae. On the shaded side of the wall of the pool, around the steps or returns, all those spots. If it is clean and clear, you can either do a test (OCLT) to verify no organics in the pool or take a chance and boost CYA now. Best practice is to test first. (test and rectify, my new motto)
 

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
anonapersona,

Thanks for the encouragement. I was getting the feeling that I was being led down the path of, you need another product, just looking at the natural chemistry web site made me feel like I was supposed to add about 12 products a month. Too much.

So I will continue to lower pH, aerate, add acid , and repeat, until TA gets to 90. Going out again to buy CYA, can I get this at Home Depot, Lowes, or Walmart. Didn't buy it at Leslie's, they said I didn't need it.

Going to research online for salt generator manual, previous owner left nothing.
 

Butterfly

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 30, 2007
10,045
South Carolina
Good job with the TA :goodjob:

When are you going to receive your test kit?

Yes, you can buy CYA a/k/a conditioner/stabilizer at WallyWorld, Lowes, etc.

WallyWorld CYA is popular around here.
 

Taylor1584

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2011
161
Houston, Texas
Whoow,

Just found the manual for the aqua rite salt cell generator. Guess what, the Leslie people don't know the correct numbers for the equipment they sell, but I kind of knew that. And now after reading this forum, I can even make sense of much of the information. So I will continue to lower TA, go buy conditioner (manual tells me how much as does the pool calculator alone with other good stuff.

So on the mission, Thank to the Forum. Keeping you informed of my progress.