newbie 'gbski' & question

Sep 21, 2013
22
Central Florida
#1
Greetings. Brand new Forum member here! Kept coming across this site and read over the pool school and am convinced to switch from tri-chlor tablets and weekly liquid "shocks" to the BBB method described here. We're currently working against a black algae bloom and can't keep any FC level. Been using the trichlor all summer since we moved in March. I'm pretty sure my CYA and CH are above range, and my PH has been at or below 7.0 for some time no matter how much PH Up I put in-I am attributing both to the tri-chlor?. Nevertheless I'm heading to town tomorrow and will get the pool store test my water (ordered my own TF-100 kit this afternoon, currently have a K-1004 test kit). In a blind attempt to simulate a SLAM (or at least keep some FC levels above 5 to try to keep algae in check), I put a gallon and a half of liquid chlorine from Pinch-a-penny in after steel brushing the pool. This morning a gallon, and tonight a gallon. The whole time since brushing it's been 5+ according to my K-1004 kit. Pool has been clear this whole time, though it clouded up a little bit with the brushing. I've increased pump time pretty much for 24 hours now to keep circulation going and clear up the water.

As I mentioned, I'm a relatively new pool owner and definitely new to BBB. My first question is regarding buying the right liquid chlorine. Can I use Pinch-a-penny jugs at $5.80? per 2.5 gallons (10 or 12.5%?)? I thought I read somewhere that adds to CH which bad? Or must household bleach be used which is more pricey around here at $2.80-3.33 for a little less than a gallon (8%)? It's looking like I will be going through a lot at first trying to get the pool back in check...

I will of course post results when I get them tomorrow. Looking forward to the new test kit and the BBB and getting back in the pool.

Thanks in advance!
 

linen

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 30, 2010
8,649
Twin Cities, MN
#2
Welcome to tfp, gbski :wave:

gbski said:
ordered my own TF-100 kit this afternoon, currently have a K-1004 test kit
:goodjob:

gbski said:
Can I use Pinch-a-penny jugs at $5.80? per 2.5 gallons (10 or 12.5%?)? I thought I read somewhere that adds to CH which bad? Or must household bleach be used which is more pricey around here at $2.80-3.33 for a little less than a gallon (8%)?
Bleach/liquid chlorine is a great choice for chlorinating your pool! It adds a small amount of salt to the pool which is fine. 10%,12.5%, 8% other...all work...typically I choose by using the cost/oz of NaClO (Sodium Hypochlorite is the "chlorine" in the bleach/liquid chlorine)...so for example your $2.80 for the 121 ounce bottle of 8.25% bleach is 2.8/(121*0.0825)= $0.28/oz NaClO and the jugs of LC assuming 10% (they might be 12.5%, you will have to look/ask) is 5.80/2.5/(128*0.10)= $0.18/oz NaClO and the better price.

gbski said:
and my PH has been at or below 7.0 for some time no matter how much PH Up I put in-I am attributing both to the tri-chlor?
Very likely.

Looking forward to your test results (more so for the tf-100 then the pool store...but it might be interesting).
 
Sep 21, 2013
22
Central Florida
#3
Thanks for your response Linen. That's what I figured about the chlorine, just wanted to make sure and get off to the right start. So I went to the pool store for more liquid chlorine and have a test done. My suspicions confirmed. Though, my test was done on water drawn during my "blind" SLAM...

TC 5+
FC 5+
CC 0
pH 7.3 (higher than anytime I tested it lately...)
TA 165 (way higher than anytime I have ever tested it. I am hoping this is because of the amount of chlorine that was recently added). I will test this tomorrow morning.
CH 375
CYA 100+ and that was on a draw of half tap water and half pool water! Yikes
Total Dissolved Solids 3,000+

Temp 88 i guess
LangierIndex 0.2 what is that?
Sequest 5- I haven't put in any metal control all summer since we've not put in any new well water.

So I think I'm looking at draining some water and refilling, right? How much do you think? We are on well water and when I have previously filled a few inches I needed a bottle of metal control as per the pool store's sequest test.

Brushed black algae today, it continued to get lighter, Water is still clear. Put the Pump down to a a10 hour daytime schedule.

If I am to refill, we are having a pool party in 6 days... I was thinking it best to wait until after the party to mess with that. In the meantime just keep chlorine high until the big day??

Thanks!
 

Patrick_B

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 7, 2011
14,999
Midland TX
#4
Welcome to TFP!

Your TA was not affected by the Chlorine addition.

If you are going to drain for high CYA which it seems you should from those results, go ahead and do it. Keeping it high requires
much more FC to keep your pool sanitized and algae free.

Langlier index is a calculation to determine scaling potential of your pool water. It is based on hardness, pH, TA, and temperature to predict how likely you are to form scale from the dissolved minerals. Forget about it for now as it will change once you re-fill.

Forget about TDS from now on. It is irrelevant in pools, and only gives a general idea of how many dissolved solids are in the water. It does not give you the specifics you need to know.

So you have metals in the well water? If you haven't put that in this summer, where are you getting fill water?
 
Sep 21, 2013
22
Central Florida
#5
When my FC came down to 4 this morning, the TA read 145. My fills this summer have been just from our summer rains. I have probably also drained out a foot due to the rains, but they are seeming to slow down now for the fall.

I assume we are talking about draining two or three feet, a couple of times to get the CYA to come down?

Thanks
 

Patrick_B

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 7, 2011
14,999
Midland TX
#6
Yes, you will likely need to drain that much. I hate it because it is a colossal waste of water, but there is no choice if you want the CYA down.
 
Sep 21, 2013
22
Central Florida
#8
Thanks for the continued advice and greetings. My black algae is looking better today. I had brushed it pretty good and hit it with a tri-chlor tab rub last night. TF-100 kit came in the mail today. So tonight I tested it and here are my results with the new kit, water at 82 degrees nighttime:

FC 5.5
CC 1 (my taylor kit suggested 0)
PH 7.1 perhaps
TA was initially 200 (I wiped the tip of the R009 bottle per instructions), then I retested after wiping again this time with water. It was 175. My taylor kit read 135
CYA was 100+ tested it as both full pool water and 50/50 with tap water.
CH 390 (busted out my new SpeedStir for that test!)

So, I am trying to get through Saturday - daughter's birthday pool party, then I will work on drain/fill on Sunday. So for tonight I brushed again and swept debris and dead algae dust to bottom drain, hit a few of the more stubborn BA spots with the trichlor rub and emptied the buckets of course. I figured and put it 7/8 of a gallon of pool store chlorine to try to get my FC at 12 per my new tools: the TFP Chlorine/CYA chart and the PoolPal calculator App and will run the pump through the night. Should I have added more to get to shock level of 39? I didn't do anything with TA or PH adjustments, figuring that I will flush the pool in 3-4 days, probably have some slamming and perhaps some serious rebalancing?... Thoughts-Did I miss anything critical?

TIA,
gbski
 

Patrick_B

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 7, 2011
14,999
Midland TX
#9
You need to bring your FC up to 12 and don't let it go under until after the party is over.

The pH needs to come up to 7.5-7.6. Use Borax or washing soda. Really doesn't matter since you are draining, just do NOT use baking soda.

Get through the party and start the re-fill process.
 
Sep 21, 2013
22
Central Florida
#10
Ok been keeping fc above 12 as suggested. 4 lbs of ph up actually got ph to 7.5 and has been holding for 36 hours. That is progress for me. However alkalinity is super high. Like 190-220 range!

So my question for the party tomorrow, is the fc near 12 safe for swimming? I think ive seen somewhere not to go in if more than 5?

Thanks again!
 

danacc

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 30, 2013
269
#11
It is safe to swim as long as FC is less than shock level for your CYA. With a CYA over 100, FC of 12 is well inside the safe zone.

If you find a statement about not going in if FC is more than 5, then they probably don't understand the CYA/FC relationship.
 
Sep 21, 2013
22
Central Florida
#14
Pool party was a success! The rain stopped just in time and kiddos had a blast. I am currently draining. Plan to take it down about 18". Will brushing the exposed sides with concentrate of bleach or acid help kill off any growth that may still be lingering unseen? Any suggestions while I have it low? Also, I will test the CYA after I fill her up, but expect it will need at least another partial drain and fill. Should I leave the chlorine alone til done then SLAM it or shall I try to maintain minimum of FC=7 the whole time?

Gracias!
 
Sep 21, 2013
22
Central Florida
#15
well, took it down only a foot or so-slightly worried about the possibility of any hydrostatic pressure since I don't know where the water table is here, but in general high in Central FL!? brushed, sprayed with 1 part bleach 1 part water, brushed in, and rinsed a couple of times, filling her up now with two hoses to keep well running full on.
 
Sep 21, 2013
22
Central Florida
#16
Water filled back to normal. New tests below. I noticed my sliding backwash valve is not shut all the way and slowly leaking water down the backwash. Won't shut even if I hammer it. I guess I will try to pull out the plunger and see if any O rings are pinching?

FC-12
CC-.5
PH 7.5
TA 190
CH 370
CYA 190 - when I do the half tap water trick

Oh yeah, a little greenish in color. Should I hit to shock level or wait til I do another drain and fill?
Oh and regarding the drain level. I have previously dug 24" deep in the yard at about a foot down our slight hill and never hit water. That was in the middle of rain season too. Is it safe to say I can drain lower than I did? I have a concrete pool with some sort of rougher pebbles finish.

THanks,,,
 

Dmsattelberg

Well-known member
Jul 10, 2013
71
Southern Delaware
#17
gbski said:
Water filled back to normal. New tests below. I noticed my sliding backwash valve is not shut all the way and slowly leaking water down the backwash. Won't shut even if I hammer it. I guess I will try to pull out the plunger and see if any O rings are pinching?

FC-12
CC-.5
PH 7.5
TA 190
CH 370
CYA 190 - when I do the half tap water trick

Oh yeah, a little greenish in color. Should I hit to shock level or wait til I do another drain and fill?
Oh and regarding the drain level. I have previously dug 24" deep in the yard at about a foot down our slight hill and never hit water. That was in the middle of rain season too. Is it safe to say I can drain lower than I did? I have a concrete pool with some sort of rougher pebbles finish.

THanks,,,
If you use the pool calculator on this site, it looks like you will need to replace about 75% of your water to shoot for a CYA of 50...I would hate to see anything happen to the pool if you were to do that all in one step, so my advice is do it a few feet at a time, but dont bother running a CYA test until you have drained and refilled 2 times, as this will save you from having to buy new reagent.

All that I can tell you is that in about a month from now you will have one of the "sparkylist" pools that you will have ever seen, and you will be putting minimal effort into it....testing pH and Chlorine daily, and the other parameters weekly is how I do it. Heck, CYA I may have only checked once after I "set" it where I wanted

Your costs will go down as you will probably be needing only an acid source, I use muriatic acid from hardware store for about 6 bucks a gallon, and a chlorine source, I use 12.5% bleach avaliable in bulk near me for $2.30 a gallon.

All my other parameters are "in line" except CH, which is from years of Calcium Hypochlorite use, but will be fixed next year with frequent back washeing/vaccuming to waste sessions. It has already gone down from 680-550 in the last few months, but is controlled by carefully watching pH to prevent its effects.

This will truly be a trouble free pool for you in no time. Familiarize yourself with the CYA/Chlorine chart, as I really think that is the one thing that will help you the most, and ask any questions you have. A little too much chlorine is much better than not enough....

Best of Luck
 
Sep 21, 2013
22
Central Florida
#18
Yeah, I would hate to see it ruined too, so I figured I should be able to get cya to 50 in three 18 inch drains. Just finished draining it, put some liq chlorine in and filling again. The green disappeared during the day with filter running. I hope I don't kill the aquifer or my well pump. I am running two hoses so I am full on without any cycling. Oh yeah I got the backflush valve shut without tearing it apart. I'll save that for next weekend...