This One's New to Me

jobondur

Well-known member
Dec 13, 2009
182
Virginia Beach, VA
So I'm opening my pool this year and when I pull the cover off the water's much clearer than I've ever seen it at opening but there is a black layer of I guess algae?? on almost the entire bottom of the liner. It brushes off easily but like I said I've never seen it before so I'm confused a little. I'm currently filling the pool but need to know what my process should be for chemicals and brushing/vacuuming. I'm guessing I should go do this:
1 - Add CYA
2 - Start the SLAM process and brush down the walls
3 - Finish the SLAM process
4 - Vacuum to waste
5 - Get TA, PH, and CYA correct
6 - Probably vacuum again (through filter this time)

Does this seem correct? Here are some pictures...
 

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Casey

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 16, 2007
11,919
SW PA
Pool Size
17000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
That looks like leaves to me but regardless, you're going to have to rake the bottom out before you start SLAM'ing the pool. Once you get them out and are running the filter, check pH, CYA, make adjustments and SLAM it.
 

Divin Dave

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Oct 2, 2013
5,687
Longview, Texas
Use your leaf rake to remove as much bottom gunk as possible before slamming. Otherwise the chlorine will be attacking what you could have cleaned out and result in much more time needed to finish the slam.
Test
Get Ph to 7.2
vacuum to waste
If CYA is below 30, add just enoguh to get it 30 until slam is finished. (lower CYA saves chlorine)
If CYA is higher than 30 but not above recommended levels, then leave as is.
Slam Slam, brush brush and filter filter
clean filter when reqired
slam slam till you pass all 3 slam criteria
adjust to recommended levels and then :swim::swim:
 

pwrstrk

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Aug 17, 2012
4,758
Elverson Pa.
Yep it looks like some clean up if that is debris and a SLAM. If you could post up some test results for us to take a look at, we can point ya in the right direction if you need it. What test kit do you have ?
Take a look a the SLAM process in Pool School and follow it the T ! Keep us posted on how things are going ?
 

jobondur

Well-known member
Dec 13, 2009
182
Virginia Beach, VA
Thanks for the tips everybody, that's why I love this site.

It's not leaves, my cover was on there pretty tight and I used the leaf rake to get some of it off. But when I pulled it up it was pretty fine stuff, I'm guessing its algae that's just covering the bottom of the liner. Its just crazy cause it looks like a solid sheet. I'll take the approach Divin Dave laid out with the exception of moving vacuum to waste to the beginning and then refilling prior to testing and getting the pH right. Not much use of getting that right then vacuuming to waste right?

Anybody got any tips on vacuuming to waste without dumping so much water out of your pool? I must vacuum really slowly cause it takes me like 30 min to do my pool and that's a LOT of water to dump.
 

Casey

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 16, 2007
11,919
SW PA
Pool Size
17000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
Believe it or not, I've never vac'ed to waste so I don't know unless you move faster! :mrgreen:
 

jobondur

Well-known member
Dec 13, 2009
182
Virginia Beach, VA
Yeah i typically vacuum to the filter just because I move so slow errr methodically.

- - - Updated - - -

But with this much **** on the bottom I'd be going through some DE in a hurry...
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
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In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
34,518
Sebring, Florida
on the bottom I'd be going through some DE in a hurry
You are correct. With a DE filter and cleaning up a swamp like yours, it is a trade off between constantly cleaning the DE or having to lose a lot of water.

Frankly, I can't tell you which is best but it has to be one or the other.

Running your pump for an hour or so might move the gunk around so it is in a central loctation and save you some vacuum strokes.

Keep us posted.
 

jobondur

Well-known member
Dec 13, 2009
182
Virginia Beach, VA
Went to the pool store to buy a vacuum head cause my brushes were so worn that it was getting stuck to the bottom and he told me to just add the chlorine at the skimmer basket to get it to mix faster. Reading here it says to mix in front of a return. Is there any detriment to adding it to the skimmer as I'm sure it will mix faster that way???
 

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Charlie_R

TFP Expert
May 8, 2013
2,156
Mexico, MO
That much of a concentration of bleach could damage the seals in your pump. That is why we recommend against skimmer additions of most chemicals.
 

jobondur

Well-known member
Dec 13, 2009
182
Virginia Beach, VA
Just wondering why I'm supposed to get my pH to a level of 7.2 when the chart says 7.5 - 7.8. My current level is 8.0 so I don't want to bring it all the way down unnecessarily if I don't need to. Please advise.
 

Smykowski

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
In most pools, the pH will gradually climb. During the SLAM, you won't be testing or adjusting pH. By starting at the low end of the range, you allow plenty of room for it to move while you concentrate only on FC.

Also, 7.2-7.8 is a safe range.
 

Charlie_R

TFP Expert
May 8, 2013
2,156
Mexico, MO
Let it circulate about a half hour, then add more if needed. Use PoolMath for your dose amount, and see how close that gets you.

Then every hour or two after that, test and dose.
 

jobondur

Well-known member
Dec 13, 2009
182
Virginia Beach, VA
Gotcha. Two more questions.

1 - I have a Polaris. Would it help to turn it on during the SLAM process? I figure it could help keep the algae stirred up so the Cl can kill it.
2 - At what point do you go from Recirculate to Filter? After the SLAM process is complete?
 

Charlie_R

TFP Expert
May 8, 2013
2,156
Mexico, MO
You can use the Polaris while SLAMming.

When the goo in the pool turns mostly grey, then go to filter. Be prepared for several DE changes your first day.
 

jobondur

Well-known member
Dec 13, 2009
182
Virginia Beach, VA
I've got another question. When I did my FC tests yesterday and this morning, the results were a little unclear. When I added the reagent drops, the water would turn clear initially but if you waited a second or two it would turn back to a light pink. This isn't what I'm used to. I'm used to it staying clear and if it does go a hint pink, one more drop would turn it permanently clear. This morning it initially turned clear at 12 ppm but didn't stay clear until 21 ppm (and even then it turned back to pink eventually). Which reading do I go with, when it initially turns clear or when it stays clear?

When I initially added my powder it turned a light pink and I thought my FC was really low. Then I added a couple of drops of reagent and it turned the dark pink I'm used to when there is a lot of FC. Is my powder just dissolving really slowly? I opened up some new reagents (powder and liquid) yesterday but I probably ordered them 8 months ago and have just been holding them until now. Do I have old reagents? What's the shelf life on these? How often do I need to order a whole new TF-100 refill kit? I ordered new CYA early last year and new Cl and calcium hardness late last year but the other stuff is likely 2 years old at least.

Thanks guys.

- - - Updated - - -

Oh and the pool's looking much better already. The water's quite cloudy but the black on the bottom is gone and it's the usual color of light green I'm used to at startup. Hopefully it'll be swimmable by Wednesday.
 

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