Pool water problems - Please help

Paul S.

New member
Jul 10, 2014
3
Mercerville, NJ
Hi guys. Thanks again for your help. I found this site years ago when i bought my house and the water turned green in a week. I read up on everything here, got a test kit and balanced everything without issue for like 7-8 seasons.

My problem now is I started using trichlor tabs and cal-hypo 53%. This was because with covid i could not find bleach anywhere. Pool stores liquid chlorine was ridiculous for price and not practical to maintain a balanced pool. I was reading articles that there would be a chlorine shortage this year cause everyone put in a pool. So i purchased big tubs of the tabs and granular so my family could swim this year. Everyone I know uses tabs and doesn't listen to me to do it troublefreepool way. They never complain of a cloudy or green pool so i figured how bad could it be for 1 season? Well....

Noticed the other day (wife noticed too) that water was slightly cloudy and slightly turquoise. My CYA is up to 80 in 1 season. So i have already brought FC up to 31 using cal-hypo. I will go out today and look for some bleach (plain, concentrated or germicidal that has a % on it and no other ingredients).

My Specs and chemicals:
18k gallon vinyl in-ground pool in New Jersey, USA
Brand new test kit chemicals for TF-100 in like May 2021

CYA = 80 (That's why i just brought FC to 31 using cal-hypo 53% to start SLAM)
FC = was 4, added 7+ lbs of cal-hypo 53% granular to target 31
CC = 0.5 (This is not concerning, correct? I rarely check this but i have never had anything but 0 before.)
TC = 4.5
Ph = 5.5 (Yes, 5.5 is correct, i have the digital one from this site. i also checked the drop test one and it's yellow below the bottom color in the viewer) How is 5.5 possible???
TA = Tried to check this since it says it can have an effect on Ph. When i do the TA test I add 25ml of pool water. Then 2 drops of R-0007 and mix. Then "5 drops of R-0008 and mix again. The solution will turn green." OK, so i cannot get a TA reading. When i put the first drop of R-0008 it turns red when the drop in the air hits the solution. 5 drops same, mix and still red. The stuff in the bottle is green. When i add R-0009 it does nothing solution was already red and no change no matter how many drops.

So I guess first questions are Ph and TA:
Is my TA essentially 0, is that possible? Would this effect the Ph?
What should be my next steps to get a TA reading, fix TA and then fix Ph?

Thanks in advance for all the help. Looking forward to the responses.

-Paul
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
44,029
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Welcome to the forum!
Is my TA essentially 0, is that possible? Would this effect the Ph?
yes - your pool water is essentially vinegar from the trichlor. It is destroying your liner and if you have a heater, quickly destroying it to.
Use Washing Soda / Soda Ash to raise the pH in small increments. Assume your pH is 6.8 and target 7.4. Use PoolMath for amounts. Circulate for 30 minutes after the add and test TA. Once you get your TA to 50, stop and let things balance.
Check Ocean State Job Lots for liquid chlorine/shock.
What tablets have you been using? Is the word Blue in the name? Concerned about copper.
I suggest you read ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry.
 

Paul S.

New member
Jul 10, 2014
3
Mercerville, NJ
One bucket of tabs is Rx Clear and the other is HTH. Nothing about Blue on the label, name, description.

Where are good places to get Soda Ash? Never needed it before. Looks like it is Sodium Carbonate which is the Ph Increaser sold in pool stores and Walmart as pool supplies.

Will check back when my TA is 50 or if i have trouble getting it there.

I will continue my SLAM at the same time? Hopefully with bleach... Am I going to be able to test TA with a FC at 31? My first attempt to test TA was with water at FC of 4.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
44,029
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Where are good places to get Soda Ash?
Soda ash is available as ARM & HAMMER® Super Washing Soda Detergent Booster. Do not confuse this with ARM & HAMMER® laundry detergent! It is sold in the laundry detergent section of most larger grocery stores and some big box stores. It is also sold by pool stores under various names, including PH Increaser, PH Up, Balance Pak 200, etc. Soda ash is best added by pre-dissolving it in a bucket of water and then pouring that slowly in front of a return.

To SLAM you need to drain half of the pool volume and refill for much chance of success. Might as well start that now and reduce the amount of chemicals you need.
 

Paul S.

New member
Jul 10, 2014
3
Mercerville, NJ
I have plenty of 6% bleach.
Drained pool water last evening and refilled last night.
Added Soda Ash throughout the day, the measured amounts as you suggested.

Current numbers (it's been 1.5 hours since any chemicals added):
CYA 40-50
FC 20
CH 100
TA 50
pH 7.0

How long should I stop and let things balance?
What's next?
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
44,029
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Looks good. Follow the SLAM Process. Your CYA is 50 ppm.
 
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