Purchased new pool, trying to get chemicals inn check.

Jun 11, 2012
18
#1
Intex 18' x 48"
Above ground.
1500 GPH cartridge pump and filter.
City water for fill.
One week since initial fill.

These are the chemicals we purchased locally by pool store suggestion.


We are not having issues as of now, I just want to get on track for success before I lose it!

This is my test strip results (the purple one was lighter, reading low)


Please help me in case I may be unaware of pending disaster.

Located in Pittsburgh Pa. area.

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BoDarville

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 5, 2012
3,843
DFW, Texas
#2
Hi larry0071:

Welcome to TFP :wave:

From your picture, the only test I can determine by name is the pH test (the row with the numbers 6.8, 7.2, 7.8, 8.4). However, the color on the test strip does not seem to match any of the colors shown for that test. I'm not 100% sure what the remaining tests are and will not make matters worse by guessing.

I would suggest getting a first-rate test kit (see the link in my signature for a comparison of quality test kits). This will be one of the best investments in pool care that you can make. The recommendations on TFP are based largely upon test results, as it should be.

Would like to be able to provide a better answer to your question, but I (and others) will need a more complete set of test results in order to do that.
 

Bama Rambler

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 22, 2009
22,815
SouthWest Alabama
#5
I would take everything back except the stabilizer. It's probably the only thing you need.

You should use the pool calculator to figure out how much bleach it takes to get about 3 ppm FC in the pool and add that much each evening until you get some CYA in the pool. Go ahead and add some this morning.

Go ahead and add. 1-1/2 quarts of Bleach now, and then add 2 lbs of stabilizer in a sock in front of a running return.
 

BoDarville

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 5, 2012
3,843
DFW, Texas
#6
larry0071:

Thanks for the updated pics. The test strip kit you are using looks remarkably similar to what I was using before switching to BBB, same tests and all. Once I got a first rate test kit and compared it to the results from the strips, I found the strips to be off on the chlorine and TA tests in particular. I'm still not sure what the "Total Hardness" test is actually testing (just CH, CH and other stuff???). The scale for CYA (stabilizer) on my now retired test strips went from 0, 30-50, 100, 150, 300. A CYA of 30-50 is ideal for most chlorinated pools, but most SWG pools tend to be happier with CYA of between 60-80. So, if my test strips showed "100", was my actual CYA 60? 80? 120? A CYA between 60-80 would still be OK for most chlorinated pools, but 120 would be too high & require a partial drain & refill. In addition, your target FC and shock FC levels depend on your CYA level (see Chlorine / CYA Chart). There is simply not enough precision with these test strips to make an informed decision.

I got introduced to BBB via the Pool Calculator. It was there that I learned that the test strips did not have the precision necessary for me to enter a good set of test results in order to obtain valid recommendations.

So, what I would do is take back the chemicals that Bama suggested and put the $ you will get from returning those chemicals towards a good test kit.
 
Jun 11, 2012
18
#7
I've already opened and began using these chemicals, so that is already played out. Im ordering the enhanced test kit, I believe the T100 as it seems to be the best overall value with more product to use over longer time.

Can anyone provide links to the recommended chemicals to buy and have on stock for my 8,400 gallon above ground seasonal pool? I'd like to get everything in stock so that I can get this in line prior to seeing any problems.

Im also seriously thinking of upgrading the OEM pump and filter, it has the Intex 1500 GPH pump now. I would like to find a direct fit upgrade.

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Mona

LifeTime Supporter
May 23, 2007
91
SE Minnesota
#8
Bleach, that's for the most part all you need. Possibly Baking Soda or Borax for the PH and TA, but I'd wait until you can test accurately. Read the Pool School and know what your levels should be and when you get your test kit you'll be ready to roll.
 

Bama Rambler

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 22, 2009
22,815
SouthWest Alabama
#9
Bleach is the only thing you know for sure that you're going to need.

I'd wait till your test kit got there and then run all the tests and post the results here. We'll know more about what you might need at that point.

Just keep adding chlorine to it every day.

A lot of people upgrade to the Intex 2650 pump/sand filter combo. It seems to work well.
 
Jun 11, 2012
18
#10
I cheaped out and ordered the Taylor K-2006 kit to get started with.

My wife is going to freak if I start dropping $100 here and $200 there every time she looks at her account. I'll break into this as slow as I can so as to prevent any bloodletting!

Next battle will be to talk her into understanding that the pump that comes with the pool is considered more of a starter pump, only intended to get the pool started and not suited for long term use with 3-8 peaople in the pool for hours and hours per day. I have 3 children, being 6, 12 and 16 and they all want their pals to come over and play in the pool. So this pool will likely see some heavy use by the local hooligans. I doubt I will keep up with it using a 1500 GPH (on its best day with a brand new filter) pump and filter. I bet the 1500 GPM lasts for about 5 minutes after a new filter is installed and progresses down from there at an alarming rate.
 

Thinkly

Well-known member
Oct 12, 2009
298
#11
Is this a temporary pool that will be drained at the end of the season? If so, then I would be less concerned about the BBB method and go ahead and use what you have on hand there. Your CYA level will rise and you will probably have to use extra chlorine but if you are only using this pool for a couple months and then draining, I wouldn't sweat it.
 
Jun 11, 2012
18
#12
Yes, I absolutely plan to break this pool down for winter and put it back up next spring.

I do not know what "BBB" stands for? I am 9 days into pool ownership :)
 

march2012

LifeTime Supporter
Jan 21, 2012
369
#14
Thinkly said:
Is this a temporary pool that will be drained at the end of the season? If so, then I would be less concerned about the BBB method and go ahead and use what you have on hand there. Your CYA level will rise and you will probably have to use extra chlorine but if you are only using this pool for a couple months and then draining, I wouldn't sweat it.
BBB isnt about specific chemicals, it is about knowing what each chemical is doing rather than randomly throwing things into the pool.

He most likely will never need the algecide, but could need pH up depending on the pH of his fill water. The shock should be fine, he can use that instead of bleach until it is gone assuming it is a chlorine based shock. But he needs to understand how much stabilizer the shock is adding (if any) so he knows what FC level he needs to have.
 
Jun 11, 2012
18
#15
From reading on the BBB I see that the stabilizer/balancer is something I have to continue to purchase at the pool store.

Yesterday I made a bad move and hit it with ph, stabilizer and half a bag of shock. After reading on here today I see that I should not be trying to "fix" all the chemicals at once. Any ways, moving past my error....

How I inserted chemicals was to use a large butter dish and partially fill with pool water, add the chemicals and use my fingers to stir, mix and smash the chemicals until it was no longer solid. I did this for each chemical.

So, also adding to my error list, I had no clue how much of what to add, so I added what made me feel good. I am aware that once my test kit comes I can use the calculator and do this much better....

My results for today from the test strip are as follows:

Label showing the colors




I know I'm just doing the best I can with the test strips until the real chemist kit arrives, so let's hope I can keep things reasonable.

For the last two days I've had the dark cover over the pool and it has not been used. I'm running the pump for two 6 hour intervals, one starts before I leave for work, and another starts after dinner. My chlorine looks to be 10+ ppm but with no stabilizer, I also know it will plummet fast if the cover is removed. The water does not have a chlorine oder and the water is currently crystal clear.

I'm trying guys!



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BoDarville

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 5, 2012
3,843
DFW, Texas
#16
larry0071:

Hat's off for your efforts. :goodjob: You are doing all you can do until your new test kit arrives. Until then, stay the course and continue keeping the water clear. Once your K-2006 test kit arrives, I would suggest running a complete series of tests. Then you will be able to fine-tune your pool's chemistry including the FC amount.
 
Jun 11, 2012
18
#17
Per my reading here, this evening instead of doing the hand mash of balancer in the butter dish... I put a guess (low guess) amount of balancer into one of my favorite socks and strong it in front of the filter discharge. Red Neck pool mechanics!

I need some Intex type B filters to stock up on so I can rotate them out and clean them, is there a good cheap source for them out a vender on this site I should go to, our should I hit Amazon? How about any sort of aftermarket filters that may be an upgrade over the Intex?





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Jun 11, 2012
18
#18
Ok, I have the Taylor K-2006 kit, and I ran my first test yesterday.

6-16-2012
FC is 8 PPM
PH is 7.0
CYA is 35 PPM
TA is 70 PPM

I retested this evening (the 17) with the old test strip after a day of lite use with no cover on for the past 36 hours and certified that the FC is still reading high at 10+ per the strip, I'll wait and retreat with the Taylor kit on Tuesday and see what reality is.

I believe that I'm zeroing in on a good healthy chemical balance. What say the old dogs with opinions and experience?

Note: Water is still crisp and clean, no indications if fog or cloud. All appears well.

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BoDarville

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 5, 2012
3,843
DFW, Texas
#19
Hi larry0071:

If your water is crisp and clean, I'd say you are in pretty good shape overall. A few things to keep an eye on as you fine-tune things:

FC of 8 is a bit high for a CYA of 35; try targeting an FC of between 4-5 per Chlorine / CYA Chart (see link in sig).

I don't see test results for CC and CH, so I would run those.

pH is a bit low. I would work on getting that up to around 7.5.

CYA and TA are fine. If you find you are losing more FC during the day than you think is acceptable, you have room to add more CYA and still be within the optimum range. But leave it where it is for now.

You are definitely on the right track :goodjob: