Taking Over Chemistry From "Pool Guy"

UtexasChris

Well-known member
Jun 10, 2020
64
Austin, TX
I finished my BYOP build and started up the pool in late May. For the last several months, I've had the company who helped with startup manage the chemistry for me so I didn't have to jump right in. The goal was to have the experts handle this while I learned more about chemistry and became comfortable managing it on my own.

After asking more questions, I was able to get the last 3 weeks of logs which saw pH consistently at 8.8 and TA consistently at 160ppm. After this, I came to the decision I should take it over. Over the course of Fri-Mon last week, I added 3 gallons of MA (on top of the 2 added on Friday by the former pool guy). Each time, I used pool math to lower the pH to 7-7.2 and turned on the water fall and sheers to aerate to drive pH up. I was able to get TA to current level of 80 as of yesterday and pH has climbed each day to a reading of 8.0 as of this morning.

While the CYA from the pool guy shows 50, I tried the test and I could still see the black dot with the vial full (although it was blurry) which leads me to believe the CYA level is 20 or lower. I plan to rerun this test this afternoon as this one feels subjective. Salt is at 3950 vs the 3600 ideal for IC60. FC tested 2 days ago at 3. CH tested 2 days ago at 450 and water temp was around 86 degrees.

While it seems I've already been able to get things in way better shape, the pH has gone from 7.5 2 days ago to 7.8 yesterday (without running waterfall/sheers for hours) and around 8.0 today. Could low CYA be contributing to the pH rise and high acid demand? I usually run my pump all day around 2250rpm and the salt cell was recently (Friday) adjusted in the intellicenter from 34% down to 20%. I also just adjusted the schedule to only turn on the waterfall for 30 min twice a day instead of 1 hour twice a day to reduce aeration. Pool is not in direct sunlight all day as I have trees and a cabana that shade it for much of the day. Borates were applied but I want to measure for myself and just ordered the reagents for the drop test that should arrive in the next week.

I just ordered some stabilizer and plan to apply via skimmer sock method after retesting CYA. Any other advice?
 

Texas Splash

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The CYA won't have any bearing on the pH. More than likely that's just from pool surfaces still curing. No need to run the VSP at 2250 either except perhaps when adding chemicals. A low rpm of about 1200 - 1400 should be just fine as long as the SWG's flow swatch remains engaged. Good job taking over your testing. :goodjob:

 

gingrbredman

Gold Supporter
Jun 10, 2020
390
Chicagoland
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I usually run my pump all day around 2250rpm and the salt cell was recently (Friday) adjusted in the intellicenter from 34% down to 20%.
I'm sure others with much more knowledge about PH will chime in, just wondering why you run the pump all day at that speed? I get running it all the time, I do as well, but am closer to 1,200 RPM which give me the skimming I need and keep the water moving. You could get all the benefits of skimming and moving the water at a lower rate and save a few bucks in electricity. I get it may need to ramp up for some water features, but that would only be when you need it.

Also, if your FC was only 3 (which is low), why lower the output of the SWCG? With low CYA, you are losing more FC than necessary, so would think you want to increase that output.
 
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UtexasChris

Well-known member
Jun 10, 2020
64
Austin, TX
Thanks @Texas Splash and @gingrbredman . I honestly never paid attention to the RPM until checking the settings to write this post as I had a company help with setup. I'll likely drop down the standard RPM as I have a "Pool High" feature that was setup when I want to run it at 3450rpm.

The pool guy dropped the output of the SWCG on Friday saying he believed I shouldn't be running it for 24 hours and that was likely contributing to constantly rising pH. The recommended range for FC in PoolMath shows 1-5 for FC so I figured FC of 3 was perfect being right in the middle. After checking the TFP recommendations, it looks like it's suggesting between 4-6 so I'll make some adjustments here. Will changing my pump speed down to 1200'ish from current RPM have an impact on the FC production outside of any changes I make in the Intellicenter? I want to make sure I'm not changing too many variables at once if lowering the pump RPM will also reduce the FC automatically before any modifications to the SWCG itself.
 

Texas Splash

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Jun 22, 2014
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Will changing my pump speed down to 1200'ish from current RPM have an impact on the FC production outside of any changes I make in the Intellicenter?
No, the speed itself will not. As long as the flow switch is engaged, the cell will produce the same amount of FC as long as the pump is on.
 

UtexasChris

Well-known member
Jun 10, 2020
64
Austin, TX
I just dialed back the pump RPM to 1700. 1400 and 1500 impacted the flow switch. It seemed 1600 worked fine but I bumped another 100 just to be sure. I also adjusted the SWCG output to 30% from the 20% it was at. Any recommendation on how long I should wait before testing FC again to make sure the increase in output comes out in the test?
 
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Texas Splash

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Any recommendation on how long I should wait before testing FC again to make sure the increase in output comes out in the test?
Right now, just leave things and monitor. Also be sure to use our PoolMath APP (Effects of Adding) to see how your SWG, coupled with output and run time, should effect FC production.
 

gingrbredman

Gold Supporter
Jun 10, 2020
390
Chicagoland
Pool Size
11200
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That's just about how I dialed my speed in. Set it so low that the flow switch would turn off, then creep it back up. then give it a little extra. So with the pump running 24 hours a day, and your SWCG running right along with it, you should add about 8.7 FC in that time frame according to the "effects of adding" section in Pool Math for your setup (using your 27.5 gallons and an IC60) IF you ran it at 100%. If you ran it at 30%, you will add about 2.5 FC in 24 hours.

I would test again tomorrow to see where your FC is at. Take into account a "normal" pool can lose 4 FC per day naturally, and yours may be a little quicker with little to no CYA.

Once you get your CYA number to where your target is, then you can target your FC based on that number according to the CYA/FC chart.
 

UtexasChris

Well-known member
Jun 10, 2020
64
Austin, TX
Very cool! I'm just starting out using Pool Math and wasn't aware it could help me calculate the FC lift based on the percentage output of my cell. I just checked it out and it's very helpful!

I also didn't realize that PoolMath could tell me what SWCG % output to run in order to get to a target FC. I listed 5FC as target and indicated I would run pump for 24 hours and it said to dial in the output to 24% for 24 hours. I'll check tomorrow afternoon to see what kind of reading I get.
 

Texas Splash

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Jun 22, 2014
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Texas, San Antonio/Marion, South-Central Area
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17888
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Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
CircuPool RJ-45 Plus
I also didn't realize that PoolMath could tell me what SWCG % output to run in order to get to a target FC.
We're working on a new program for it to tell you what to eat for breakfast. But seriously, the more you learn about PoolMath and how to interpret the information it gives you, the more you'll be glad you are in control of your water. Not to mention $$$ saved by not getting ripped off at the local store.
 
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