Opening and SLAM without Calcium Chloride


Well-known member
Aug 20, 2017
Southeast PA
So I opened last weekend. Other than stains from worms (a recurring yearly problem) not too bad. Got it all started and cleaned up. Having trouble finding calcium chloride for a reasonable price. I have 100 lbs on order from Walmart, but delayed, and 100 lbs ordered from 3rd party on Amazon but not here for maybe 2 weeks, if at all. Lowe's canceled my order. Next year I'll remember to buy in the winter when it's still in stock.

Numbers are below. Can I put in acid just to like 8.0, then my salt and go ahead and SLAM? Then once the calcium gets here I fully balance? It'll leave me around -0.45 or so ,but it's cold, and won't be for super long.

I'm worried about leaving it without chlorine and the cover off, even at this low temperature. But I can't run the generator to maintain after SLAM without adding salt. Also flirting with the low temperature limit of the SWG but that's another issue.

Test Results 04-13-2020 @ 11:15 AM
Free Chlorine: 0.0
Combined Chlorine: 0.0
pH: 8.4 (plus, who knows)
Total Alkalinity: 60
Calcium Hardness: 200
CYA: 35
Salt: 1800
Temperature: 50°F
CSI: 0.08

Notes 04-12-2020 @ 06:17 PM
4lb DE

Maintenance 04-12-2020 @ 06:16 PM
Vacuumed, Brushed

My signature didn't come, I guess because phone.

Plaster, 26k or so gallons from memory, DE, SWG, VSP.
Last edited:


Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
Northern NJ
Pool Size
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Your pool can go months with a CH of 200 without it being a problem. You can raise your CH when you can.

Your CYA is 40. We round up. If the dot disappears between 40 and 30 you call it 40.

With CYA 40 your FC target is 5-7 and SLAM target is 16. Get your FC up to 5-7 ASAP using liquid chlorine.

Lower your PH into the 7's using MA.

Once you have FC in the pool then do an Overnight Chlorine Loss Test after a few days and determine if you need the SLAM Process. I just raise my FC up between target and SLAM FC for a few days after opening and that takes care of any residual algae.


Well-known member
Aug 20, 2017
Southeast PA
Alright, it was the length of "long periods at this CSI can damage plaster" that I wasn't sure of.

I usually SLAM at opening regardless of test since it helps with the stains and makes us feel better after all the worms. Plus my CYA is only this low once a year so this is my chance to get it high and help with stains and stuff.

I'll go to 7.8 and add salt and start the SLAM. Once the chlorine decays enough it should be warm enough and my salt dissolved to start the generator up, get CYA up. Then I'll add the calcium whenever it arrives and finish balancing.
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