Unusually high TA all of a sudden?

bobazonski

New member
Feb 22, 2021
2
Las Vegas, NV
Hi everyone, this is my first post but I've been coming across answers on this forum that have been all kinds of help since I took over maintaining my own pool. I'm happy to now be a member of such a great community!

Anyway, I took over maintenance of my own pool starting in November and have done a ton of research on how to keep everything in order. I haven't had to do much in terms of water chemistry since then, mainly due to the cold weather, but I've been testing every week or two. Recently, I noticed that TA has shot WAY up, from around 100 a couple weeks ago, now up to 240 or so. I'm trying to figure out what may have caused such a drastic change or if it may be my test strips. I haven't been able to find much on this topic online. No one has used the pool lately, but there have been a couple windstorms, a rainstorm, and, very unfortunately, a piece of dog excrement that was blown into the pool and broke apart before I was able to remove it. I'm using Aquachek 7 strips and they still have around 2 years left until they expire. I've kept the strips stored indoor and dry.

Is this kind of change normal, and if not, what could have caused it? Or could it be faulty test strips? Thanks in advance for the help!
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
36,253
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Welcome to the forum!
I assume your current test is using a proper test kit such as a K2006C or TF100?
Do realize test strips are called guess strips for a reason. You can guess a value just as accurately as a test strip will provide.
If your high TA test was the first you did with a new kit, and it is from one of the kits I noted above, then you may have a testing error.
Read Total Alkalinity - Trouble Free Pool
I suggest you read ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry.
 

thefloatqueen

Bronze Supporter
Dec 24, 2018
904
Columbus, Ohio
Pool Size
7500
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Welcome!! I second what @mknauss said about getting a proper testing kit. Your fill water may have a high alkalinity like mine (my fill water’s TA is over 300!!!!!😳)
The strips are likely inaccurate. Have you been adding more fill water than usual?
 

bobazonski

New member
Feb 22, 2021
2
Las Vegas, NV
Thanks for the responses! When I first bought test supplies I found arguments favoring both options, but ultimately opted for the strips for simplicity and cost. The strips seem to have been pretty consistent with most readings, but I do understand that there are a lot of factors that can result in a false reading. I suppose I should get a proper kit. (Any recommendations?)

I also have not added any water lately. I have an auto fill valve but it shouldn't be adding much right now with the cold weather.
 

thefloatqueen

Bronze Supporter
Dec 24, 2018
904
Columbus, Ohio
Pool Size
7500
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Thanks for the responses! When I first bought test supplies I found arguments favoring both options, but ultimately opted for the strips for simplicity and cost. The strips seem to have been pretty consistent with most readings, but I do understand that there are a lot of factors that can result in a false reading. I suppose I should get a proper kit. (Any recommendations?)

I also have not added any water lately. I have an auto fill valve but it shouldn't be adding much right now with the cold weather.
Yes!! The TF-100 is amazing! Best kit out there, IMO! Order it at www.TFTestkits.net
Oh and definitely invest in the SpeedStir which is also on there. It made testing my water soooo much easier and faster!
 
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