trying to please two masters

EGGARTFAM

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2012
62
0
Pensacola, Florida
#1
I need help.

I have been tooting the TFP horn for over a week now to hubby. He seems to still be reluctant about completely following the advice here. Since I'm off for the summer (I'm a teacher), most of this week's pool work has been left to me, since he is at work.

I went to the pool store twice this past week (I honestly don't have enough $$ to purchase a TF-100 test kit right now). Here are yesterday's numbers (pool is still a "clear" green, albeit MUCH lighter than it was on Tuesday when I went to the pool store).

TA: 75 (added about 10 lbs. of baking soda yesterday around noon, hubby vacuumed pool in the evening, I also switched out filters before adding baking soda, and he did after vacuuming).
pH: 7.48 (the borax I had added after Tuesday worked!!)
CYA: 22 (this has dropped from 30 on Tuesday)
FC: 5.49 (this was at 8.95 on Tuesday)
TC: 5.72 (this was at 8.95 also on Tuesday...I'm thinking this is where things partly went wrong, I didn't add any more bleach after Wednesday evening)
CH: 25 (how much do I need to worry about this number with an above ground Intek pool?)
Salt: 3320 (up from 3100 on Tuesday...how did this happen since I didn't add any more salt...also haven't run SWG in over a week, I know that doesn't MAKE salt...just adding that information in)

So, my hubby last night, before I could say no, added in half a bottle of what we had left of "Defender" some green away algaecide I'm guessing, from the pool store. Not sure what is in it, no ingredient list on bottle.

The pool is BARELY green. What should I do?
 

RobbieH

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Aug 30, 2010
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#2
Is the TA of 75 after adjusting? I hope so, because that's where you want to be.
The CYA number shows you how inaccurate the pool store tests are. Unless you drained a large amount of water (like 1/3 your water), that drop could not have occurred.
TC=FC+CC. Keep that in mind when reading FC and TC.
CH - depends, what kind of pool do you have? If it's plaster, that's extremely low. Otherwise, doesn't matter.

You should be shocking your pool if you have any green at all. Follow these instructions. Don't raise CYA until you are done with the process.
pool-school/shocking_your_pool

Once you are done, since you are using a SWG, your CYA needs to come up, way up. I'd estimate you are at 30 right now, then add enough to bring you up to 60. Wait a week then measure again. Your goal is 70-80.
 

woodyp

Mod Squad
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Apr 18, 2010
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East Texas
#3
Don't make us send the Mod Squad over there to "lean on" hubby! But seriously, tie his hands, follow the advice here on shocking your pool, and you can PROVE it to him in a couple of days if your pool is just barely green. Bleach is your friend. Everyone here is too!
 

jblizzle

Mod Squad
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May 19, 2010
41,193
4
Tucson, AZ
#4
Order the kit ... you can not afford not too ... at least get the K-2006 then (although you will run out of reagent faster). You will quickly spend more money by going to the pool store and following their advice based on often unreliable testing.

And please add all your pool details in your signature.
 

msgtdan

Well-known member
Jul 8, 2011
653
0
SW MO
#5
(pool is still a "clear" green, albeit MUCH lighter than it was on Tuesday when I went to the pool store).
You may not have algae, if the water is clear but green it may metals. Others with more knowledge than me can help if it is. The pool store water test should be able to tell you if you have metals. At the very least get the HTH 6-way test at Walmart, then you can test CYA, TA & CH a lot more accurately then the pool store will.
 

Gary R

LifeTime Supporter
May 12, 2012
125
0
#6
Just as a question:

Couldn't the geen tinge to the water just be low CH? My pool started geen this with new water, As I add CH it turned bluish.

thanks,

Gary R
 

EGGARTFAM

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2012
62
0
Pensacola, Florida
#7
yes, TA of 75 is after adjusting.

For TC, I don't want a high CC, correct? Trying to keep everything from Pool School, ABC's and Shocking topics from TFP all straight. I come back and re-read stuff all the time.

We have an above ground vinyl pool, so that's why I ask about the CH (pool store said once pool was clear I'd need to add 32 lbs of calcium elevator....um, no, from what I've read on here, with a vinyl pool, I probably don't need to worry about CH, or do I?).

Any advice on water testing until I get a better kit? We get paid today, so I know I can splurge on a good test kit.

We do have well water and on Tuesday the pool store tested for copper and iron and both were at zero. I was following the BBB and shocking pool advice here and almost had hubby convinced of the process; he just wants to see a quicker improvement. I keep trying to gently tell him that quick fix is not the best fix.

Also, any advice for what to do with rain? We're looking at a possible tropical storm this weekend...I'm going to be so mad IF I get everything fixed and then we get a bunch of rain, have to drain to keep from overflow and that messes everything up.

we.just.want.to.use.the.pool. :-(

(not sure how to add a signature...I will look into this)
 

JasonLion

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May 7, 2007
37,879
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Silver Spring, MD
#8
CH doesn't have any effect on water color. Any appearance of a relationship was presumably a coincidence.

There is no reason to add calcium to a vinyl liner pool.

Salt tests are +-400, so your two salt readings are consistent with each other and with the level having remained the same.

As RobbieH already said, your CYA needs to come up to the 70 to 80 range.

CC below 0.5 is fine.

Rain isn't really much of an issue unless the pool overflows, and even that is just inconvenient, and not a serious problem.

What does the water look like in more detail? What color, how cloudy/murky? Has it been improving or getting worse?
 

jblizzle

Mod Squad
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May 19, 2010
41,193
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Tucson, AZ
#9
Just make sure you get a test kit that has the FAS-DPD chlorine test (likely will have to be ordered).

Just bump the FC up a bit either before or after the storm.

Can you add a picture of the water so we can maybe see if it is metals? I do not think CH has anything to do with the green as some members have 0 CH.

For the sig. Go to the upper left "User Control Panel" and then "PRofile" and then "Edit Signature"
 

zea3

Mod Squad
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Jul 10, 2009
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Houston, Texas
#10
If your water looks clear green it may have copper or iron. Since you have a well my guess is iron, but a good sequesterant should take care of either. Jack's Magic is a good sequesterant. If your pool store doesn't carry that brand look for a HEDP, phosphonic acid, or phosphonic acid derivative based sequesterant. Also, check if your intex SWG has the copper bar. You can unplug that part if you want to avoid adding copper to the pool.
 

EGGARTFAM

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2012
62
0
Pensacola, Florida
#11
[attachment=0:1btceh2f]beforeafter.pdf[/attachment:1btceh2f]

Here are two pictures, the top one is from when we finally got the pool refilled (after deciding to empty the entire thing and relevel the ground). We've only had the pool for about three weeks. First week, torrential rains, so we emptied and releveled and refilled. Then this picture was taken when everything was finally back in place and filled back up. This was also after all the salt had been added back in and CYA had been started. Next day it was a deep green, clear, but a deep green.

I started out by pleasing hubby and doing a couple bags of powder shock stuff from WallyWorld. Then I convinced him to let me try the BBB method and started dumping chlorine and brushing the pool. Great results at the start, but now it has been this color for the past 2 days. Second picture.

I know it's not that green looking in the photo, which is why I added the "original" photo as a comparison.

Hope this helps some (and I hoped I've attached it correctly...saved it as a PDF file to make it *hopefully* easy for anyone to open).
 

Attachments

jblizzle

Mod Squad
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May 19, 2010
41,193
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Tucson, AZ
#14
When did it turn green? After you added the shock and chlorine?

That does look like metal in the water to me ... so follow zea3's advice.
 

EGGARTFAM

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2012
62
0
Pensacola, Florida
#15
Thank you for the suggestion. Anywhere else besides a pool store that might carry the recommendations for solving an iron problem?

Also, how (or can) do iron levels change? The pool turned green on Sunday, started shock method as described here. Took water to pool store on Tuesday for testing (wanted to see where my FC levels were as far as the bleach was going, and where pH was..to fix with borax). They tested for iron and copper then and both were at 0. Is this normally accurate from a pool store? Looking at the fancy test kits to purchase...not seeing any that test for metals. Wondering if this is a problem related to well water AND if this is why the cartridge filters are a red, rusty color.

One last question, for now. Sorry for all the questions...there is stuff that looks like "worms" from oak trees on the bottom. Until brush, then they disappear into clouds and after settling, look again like what I would call oak tree "worms" (seeds or whatnot from oak trees, not actual worms). Is this algae, is this possibly from the pine tree that is close to the pool (going to cut that back a lot very soon). Is this attributing to the overall problems of green tint?
 

jblizzle

Mod Squad
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May 19, 2010
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Tucson, AZ
#16
EGGARTFAM said:
Wondering if this is a problem related to well water AND if this is why the cartridge filters are a red, rusty color.

One last question, for now. Sorry for all the questions...there is stuff that looks like "worms" from oak trees on the bottom. Until brush, then they disappear into clouds and after settling, look again like what I would call oak tree "worms" (seeds or whatnot from oak trees, not actual worms). Is this algae, is this possibly from the pine tree that is close to the pool (going to cut that back a lot very soon). Is this attributing to the overall problems of green tint?
If your filters are rusty looking ... that is another sign of iron in the water. I do not know how well pool store tests for metal are. You could try another pool store ... probably not worth buy a test for yourself.

The tree stuff falling into the pool could certainly affect your FC levels, but if you are maintaining FC at the correct levels, it will not cause algae to grow. I still think the green is metal and not algae, but I have never dealt with it before, so hopefully someone else will confirm.
 

JasonLion

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May 7, 2007
37,879
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Silver Spring, MD
#17
The red rusty color is from iron particles. Clear transparent green water comes from either iron or copper dissolved in the water and medium to high FC levels. Iron & copper will test as zero when the water is green. And pool store metal tests are not all that reliable any way. Iron is more yellow than green, but yellow water plus a blue liner tends to look very green. Copper is more of a rich emerald green.

If the water is at all cloudy, murky, or hazy then it is much more likely to be algae than metals in the water.

Sequestrant, which will get the color out of the water if it is caused by metals, is only sold by pool stores and pool departments in some big box stores (WalMart, Lowes, Target, Home Depot, etc).
 

EGGARTFAM

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2012
62
0
Pensacola, Florida
#18
unsure best forum to post in

I have been posting in Algae, but I think it was decided that the problem with the pool water is probably Iron. I bought a sequestrate (sp?), but should I wait until morning to add it? How long after adding that is it ok to swim? Water clear=ok to swim basically?

My other questions, I did not find this site until AFTER the pool was filled, so after reading through pool school numerous times, here they are:

1) I know swimming during shock and/or algae outbreak is not good, but what about possible metals?
2) I need more information on CYA; I feel like CYA is this mystery chemical, because it takes so dang long to dissolve (we've been using the pantyhose in the skimmer method...), and yet without a proper CYA level, the FC is going to just disappear (right?). The TA and pH are just about where they need to be (just a tad low). But then I found something new in Pool School, that I don't need to clean the filter while I'm waiting (a week sometimes?!) for CYA to raise. But I need to clean the filter because of the possible iron...the filters are rusty red colored within half a day...
3)What can I do while I am waiting for my test kit to arrive? The pool store (yuck, I know) will test our water for $5 if we don't buy any chemicals from them.
4) I feel like we have yet to even see how well the SWG will work; all these other chemicals we have to add, the pool store (before TFP) was telling us to keep the SWG off for 72 hours (but they said NOTHING about keeping the chlorine levels high, which I now know was a problem). So when can I finally turn the SWG on so I can stop pouring bleach in?

We've had the pool for 3 weeks now, and have only been in it for a total of 30 minutes on two 15 min occasions. Hubby is getting super frustrated. He's happy with the advice from TFP now, but we feel still very out of control with the situation. His pool owner patience is running thin...and to be honest, so is mine.
 

jblizzle

Mod Squad
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May 19, 2010
41,193
4
Tucson, AZ
#19
I had a Mod combine your posts ... best to keep the store together.

I do not know much about how the sequestants work, so will leave that to other to respond. I think it is safe to swim because the metal does not actually leave the water.

To answer your other questions:
1) You drink the same water right? The metal does not leave the water just stays in solution, so it is safe
2) Since you are using pantyhose it should be fine to clean the skimmer. If you just dumped the CYA into the skimmer and thus into the filter, you can not clean it. You could also hang it in front of a return and either way, squeeze the sock whenever you walk by to help it dissolve. Once it is dissolved, assume it is working ... it just may not show up on a test.
3) If you ordered a TF100, it is very fast shipping. IF you feel like you need your water tested, just buy a gallon of liquid chlorine and let the pool test it. Just may not want to fully trust the results.
4) If your salt level is fine, I do not see why you can not turn on the SWG. You will need to dial it up a bit since your CYA is not yet up, but it shouldbe working. Why do you think you were not supposed to turn it on? I suppose if shocking was required, but it seems like metal may be the issue.

With just the green clear water, I think it is safe to swim ... assuming your FC is above the recommend minimum and below the shock level from Pool School and your CC is not more than 0.5.
 

zea3

Mod Squad
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Jul 10, 2009
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Houston, Texas
#20
Re: unsure best forum to post in

Hi, I combined your two threads. It is much easier for us to follow your story if you keep it all in one thread until the current issues are resolved. I will answer your questions inside the quote. My answers will be in red.

EGGARTFAM said:
I have been posting in Algae, but I think it was decided that the problem with the pool water is probably Iron. I bought a sequestrate (sp?), but should I wait until morning to add it?
You can add the sequesterant at any time, but since it is probably late where you are it would be best to wait until morning.
How long after adding that is it ok to swim? Water clear=ok to swim basically? Give it about an hour to circulate before swimming unless the directions on the package say otherwise.

My other questions, I did not find this site until AFTER the pool was filled, so after reading through pool school numerous times, here they are:

1) I know swimming during shock and/or algae outbreak is not good, but what about possible metals?
As far as I know there is no saftey issue with swimming in water discolored by metals.

2) I need more information on CYA; I feel like CYA is this mystery chemical, because it takes so dang long to dissolve (we've been using the pantyhose in the skimmer method...), and yet without a proper CYA level, the FC is going to just disappear (right?). The TA and pH are just about where they need to be (just a tad low). But then I found something new in Pool School, that I don't need to clean the filter while I'm waiting (a week sometimes?!) for CYA to raise. But I need to clean the filter because of the possible iron...the filters are rusty red colored within half a day...
Its not that you can't clean the filter while adding CYA, its back washing we want to avoid. Back washing sends a lot of water to waste during the process, thus flushing out your new CYA. Since you have a cartridge filter all you need to do is to plug or close the return and intake valves, open the filter, pull out the cartridge, hose it off and pop it back in.

3)What can I do while I am waiting for my test kit to arrive? The pool store (yuck, I know) will test our water for $5 if we don't buy any chemicals from them. Since most of the levels are in range, just add a couple of cups of chlorine every day until the test kit arrives.

4) I feel like we have yet to even see how well the SWG will work; all these other chemicals we have to add, the pool store (before TFP) was telling us to keep the SWG off for 72 hours (but they said NOTHING about keeping the chlorine levels high, which I now know was a problem). So when can I finally turn the SWG on so I can stop pouring bleach in? If the test results show all is well you can turn on the SWG. It may take a couple of days to figure out how long to run it for your pool. You can supplement with liquid chlorine as needed until the SWG is able to maintain your target fc level.

We've had the pool for 3 weeks now, and have only been in it for a total of 30 minutes on two 15 min occasions. Hubby is getting super frustrated. He's happy with the advice from TFP now, but we feel still very out of control with the situation. His pool owner patience is running thin...and to be honest, so is mine.
Take heart, you are very close to having a swimable pool. Keep reading and asking questions and it will get easier. It will make more sense once you have your own test kit.