Taking the Plunge (literally and figuratively) with My Pea-Green Pool

Teald024

TFP Guide
The strength should be listed on the bottle. Look for % of Sodium Hypochlorite. Typical used to be 8.25%. Now typical is 6%. If it isn't marked on the bottle then it is 3% or less. Don;t get that stuff as you will need a tanker full. Many say that HEB also is worth checking.
You need to check the $ and % when comparing. $4 for 10% is a lot better than $3 for 6%. It really doesn't matter, just cheapest per FC.
 

Fast7

Well-known member
Aug 8, 2018
64
Plainfield, IL
Household bleach is usually 6%.
Sometimes you can find 8% version.
You have to be careful to look for regular bleach without any additives. Scented, splash-less or CloroMax versions are to be avoided. In practice unless you can get it super cheap, 10% or 12% are the best deals and as bonus you don’t have to lug around as much.
 

jdlangley1

Well-known member
Jan 7, 2019
122
Spring, Tx
Yea I figured you weren’t too close.

I’m right down the road. I buy it in 5 gallon increments so I’m only going once a month.

Maybe try calling some pressure washer guys and see where they get theirs from. There may be some chemical company’s close to you.
 

cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
Well, I'm making progress. I went down to Home Depot this morning and found an adapter that lets me hook up a garden hose to my filter housing. It works. Moderate flow through the hose -- not max, but a decent output. Maybe 1 or 2 gpm? So, it's gonna take a while to drain down the pool. I've already started. It's warm out right now, but not too hot. I'll shut it down if it looks like it's gonna get too hot later on, then start it back up once the sun goes down.

I also bought some PVC items -- a ball valve, some elbows and sleeves. This will let me install a diverter valve between the pump and filter in the 1-1/2" PVC line, so drainage will be much faster -- I hope. I found an old drain line that's not being used any more. It is half buried. One end extends to somewhere under the pump -- obviously not hooked up to anything anymore. The other side is a long line that runs toward the front of the backyard. It's buried after about 10 feet, so I don't know where it actually ends up. I'm going to open it up and try using my garden hose, and see what happens. If it's all clogged up, I might have to run a plumbing snake (I have a motorized one) up the pipe to clear it out. If that doesn't look like it's gonna work out, then I'll have to run another line. I think I'll run this one to the back of the property. There's a drainage ditch that runs along the back of our property line, on the other side of our back fence. I dunno, if I'm feeling particularly industrious, I might try pushing the pipe under the fence to the ditch. Else I'll just let it end at the back of the yard and let the water find its own way to the ditch. We've done this before when we had to drain the pool -- the pool guy had a pump and he just ran his hose to the back of our yard. It drained fine.
 

cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
Heh, I reckon I can use the garden hose that's draining the pool. :cool:

I just did a rough set of calcs. Using that small fitting at the bottom of my filter, I'm draining the pool roughly at the rate of 220 gallons per hour. So I'm gonna be at this a while. Since I began draining the pool 5 hours ago, I've drained about 1100 gallons.

That translates into 5" so far. What, I guess about 2 feet 7 inches to go? (I'm figuring I should take it down about 3 feet)

I guess I should dig out my Sawzall and get busy with that PVC pipe out there. Oh my aching back. I'm too old for this. My daughter's fiance should be over here helping out.
 

cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
I just made a closer inspection of that old drain line. Problems. It's a narrower pipe -- 1-1/4" I'm guessing -- but more significantly, it's old and brittle. So I'll need to run a new line. I just ran some head loss calcs. 100 feet of 1.5" PVC @ 44 gpm (max through 1.5" PVC) with the number of fittings I'll need -- I'm looking at about 5 psi of head loss. My pump can handle 5 psi no problem. It's pushing 14 psi across the filter right now (it needs cleaning). So 1.5" should work just fine, and I think I can make do with 100 feet of pipe. Even if I have to run more, it won't be a problem.
 

cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
I don't know, off hand, how long I'm supposed to wait between pool tests, but it's been a couple of days, so I thought I'd go through it again. And the results are quite a bit different. And they are:

FC: 10
CC: 1.5
-------
TC: 11.5

CH 350 ppm

TA 120 ppm

CYA 90 ppm

pH 7.6

According to the PoolMath app, my TA is high and out of range, my CYA is still way too high, and CH is high normal. I will continue with drawing down the pool level to about 3 feet down, I guess (the deep end is 10 feet), and start refilling when I hit that mark. I don't suppose there's much else I can do until then besides brush down the sides.

Once I've refilled the pool, that's when I begin the SLAM process, correct?
 

cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
Yes, well, I'll do another complete test after I've refilled the pool. That should be some time tomorrow, probably late tomorrow afternoon.
 

cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
It's almost 6am as I type this, and I don't know if I'm gonna wait until the pool's water level has dropped 3 feet. It's at 2 feet and change right now, and I think that's good enough. Pic taken at 5:30am. Pool's been draining for about 18 hours. According to my calcs, I've drained roughly 8,000 gallons from a 20,000 gallon pool. That should be sufficient to get the blasted CYA numbers down. I hope.

pool_draining_1a.jpg
 

nhamp07

Bronze Supporter
Jul 24, 2018
118
New Braunfels, TX
Home Depot has a 3 pack of 10% chlorinating liquid for 9.99. Best value in Texas it seems. If you buy 4 (12 gallons) which you will need for the SLAM they give you a discount.

 

cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
Thanks for the tip. I'll head down that way and pick some more up. I bought only two gallons, not knowing how much I would need.

Oh, and Dave was right. I checked the ingredients on my chlorine "pucks" and bags of shock. The pucks are 94% tri-chlor and the bags of shock are 58% di-chlor-tri-chlor somethingoranother. I guess I'll lay off them for a while.
 

cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
Noted. I guess I just got a bit impatient. It was taking forever draining from the garden hose. But we're filling the pool from the garden hose as well. Fortunately, the flow rate has been higher. There's about 8 more inches to go before it'll be full. I've got the pump on to circulate the water, and I'll test again as soon as the pool is full.

I think that, while I have the time, I'm gonna head on down to Home Depot and pick up a couple of those three-packs of pool chlorine. Looks like I'm gonna need it.

There's a lot of stuff on the bottom of the pool now. Both live and dead algae, by the looks of it. My little Pool Vac XL is doing a commendable job of vacuuming it up -- I just have to stay on top of the filter, keep it clean. I also have one of those flat pool vacs that have weights and little rollers. I've used it in the past for vacuuming up leaves and acorns. I'm gonna give it a try with the algae and see if it works for this as well.

A problem I'm having with my Pool Vac XL is it gets clogged with leaves once it ventures into the deep end. I still can't see the bottom, so I don't know what's down there. I reckon it's still gonna be at least a few days before I'll be able to see the bottom again. In the meantime, I've tried scooping with my net, but with poor results. So I think I'm gonna use that flat vac -- blind -- down there and just move it around a bunch, and hope for the best.
 
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cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
Okay, well I'm about to head down to Home Depot in a little while to pick up a couple of 3-packs of their chlorinating liquid. In an earlier post, Dave mentioned that I should reduce the pH to 7.2 before I begin the SLAM process. I have two gallons of muriatic acid. According to the poolmath app, it looks like, at my old pH of 7.6, I'm only gonna need 21 oz of 29% muriatic acid, so it looks like I have plenty. I have a glass measuring cup I'll use for it. I haven't checked pH since I filled the pool, so I don't know exactly where it is now. I will check it in a few minutes. Heck, I might as well do a complete test. I'll report back with my results.

Here's hoping I got my CYA down to an acceptable level. Question, if the CYA is still kinda high, do you recommend I SLAM with the higher numbers, or should I just suck it up and drain off more of the water -- again?

Another question: in the TF-100 test kit, it mentions that it will probably take a little while to get the hang of reading the results -- or words to that effect. I find myself staring down into that turbidity, looking for traces of the black dot, and straining to see it. I'm doing my best guess at it right now. So, I'm wondering if you guys might have any tips about reading this setup to insure more consistent -- and accurate -- results? It would appear to me that this is a number that I want to be sure is accurate since the whole SLAM process sort of hangs on the value I've determined.
 

zea3

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2009
11,295
Houston, Texas
You have a good plan for pH, so lower it if needed before the slam, then don't worry about it again until the slam is completed and FC drops below 10ppm.

All depends on how high the CYA is. If its 70ppm I'd drain again. 40ppm I'd go ahead and slam. You can slam with higher CYA, it will just take more chlorine.

Hold CYA view tube outside in strong sun at waist level with your back to the sun. Add a few drops of your mixed sample to the view tube and give it a quick glance, then look away. Continue adding a few drops, glancing and looking away until your first impression is you don't see the dot. Read the result and write it down. Pour the mixed solution back into the mixing bottle then add a few drops to the view tube again, quick glance and look away. Continue the process until you get another test result. I prefer to re-read the test result 3 times and see if I'm close to the same result each time. Report the result in increments of 10. A result between 30 and 40 would be read as 40.

The CYA test is the hardest to read and if you stare at it you will see the black dot, or at least think you do.
 

cooltouch

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2018
74
Houston, Texas
Thanks for the tip.

Well, I just got back from Home Depot with the chems. Had to go to two different stores cuz the first didn't have any. I was running out of time, so I didn't do the test before I left. So I'll do it now. Here are the numbers:

FC: 2 ppm
CC: 1 ppm
-----------
TC: 3 ppm

CH: 275 ppm

TA: 120 ppm

CYA ~ 52

pH ~ 7.4

Looking much better, yes? I think that, with that CYA number, I won't need to drain my pool again. And the poolmath app sez I need to add 30 oz of muriatic acid to reach 7.2. So I'm gonna go ahead and add the acid, then, what -- wait a while for it to mix throughout the pool, or can I go ahead and begin the SLAM process?
 

zea3

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2009
11,295
Houston, Texas
You can start the slam right way. You usually only need to let it mix about 15 minutes after adding it to the pool.
 

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