Watermaverick - In search of the perfect pool

watermaverick

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 15, 2010
23
San Antonio, Texas
I'm new here - stumbled across the site while searching for honest info - I like what I read so I joined. I had never heard of BBB. I have maintained 3 pools - 2 sand filter and the most recent is D.E. I leased a 10 yr old house with a 55,000 gal pool in Nov. '09. Included in the lease was a weekly pool service provided by the builder and paid for by me. After watching them service for 1 month I decided to save money and grow a brain. I don't think I know more than the pool service but I have more time to spend learning about the pool than I did with my last one in '84. So I paid for pool school and I researched what I thought was thorough info. Long story short - TDS and CYA levels were in the moon and I had to drain it in March '10. My family didn't start swimming in it until early May. The local pool supply store (LPSS) has been advising me since I moved in so why wouldn't I trust them? Heck if it wasn't for them I wouldn't have known about TDS & CYA levels...but after the refill they had me shocking it every 2 weeks so... you already know (what I didn't) that the CYA levels were rising quickly.
Today my numbers look like this-
FC: 2.8
TC: 1.7
CC: 1.1
pH: 7.7
TA: 110
CYA: 100
CH: 240
I bought MPS (12 x 1# bgs for $54) to shock pool before the CC rises - I also use a chlorinator with TriChlor pucks but keep it on the down low (2 tabs on 1.5). I know it adds stabilizer (CYA) - I think that's ok...your thoughts?
Thank you for such an extensive site
 

257WbyMag

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Feb 23, 2008
5,061
Denton, TX
Welcome to TFP!

Unless this is an indoor pool, you really don't need the MPS. Maintaining a properly chlorinated pool will do you fine. Chlorine is not only a sanitizer, but an oxidizer as well. This, coupled with the UV rays from the sun will take care of CC for you.

Your CC is high but if you have been using MPS, this can show as CC on your test.

Your CYA is very high at 100. For a pool without a SWCG, we recommend a CYA of 30 to 50 ppm. You should probably do a partial drain and refill to get this down. CYA has a direct effect on how much FC is needed to sanitize your pool. A pool with a CYA of 100 needs at least an FC of 7 all the time to stay clean (if it is clean already). I would quit using stabilized chlorine sources (tablets and powders) and go to liquid from this point. We use bleach quite a bit, but if you can find some chlorinating liquid somewhere (10% or 12.5% sodium hypochlorite) this might be better for you.

Have you begun reading Pool School yet?
 

watermaverick

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 15, 2010
23
San Antonio, Texas
Howdy Mod!

Thanks for the quick response. My family was starting to think they couldn't use the pool the rest of the summer.

My pool is outside and IG. I have started reading from the pool school, and other topics like chemicals, etc. I have never used MPS. I realize now that it's not the chlorine that's the problem but rather the stabilizer that's in it. I have never used liquid chlorine other than on my white clothes.

So just to clarify - you're suggesting that I return the MPS as well as quit using the chlorinator on the filter and start adding liquid chlorine? As far as draining the pool is concerned I've been overflowing a bit here and there and stopped all shock treatment (had some help from the recent storms too) - it did go down in one month from 125 to 100 ppm!! It seemed like it took forever to get FC & TC level readings under 5+though. I don't have a test kit that will fine tune numbers so maybe I should go independent of the LPSS and buy the nuclear version Taylor offers... the pool is sparkling clear and I keep it very, very clean of Grackle guano, etc.

Do I trust the test kit or the LPSS diagnostics? Allowing for a small margin of difference between the two, why would my FC and TC readings be so off from theirs? It seems to defeat the purpose of taking in a water sample.

So which do I do first - drain the pool or add the liquid chlorine?
 

257WbyMag

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Feb 23, 2008
5,061
Denton, TX
Yes, stop using the stabilized chlorine sources and switch over to bleach or liquid chlorine. This will keep you from adding anymore CYA to the water.

You need a good test kit of your own. I would suggest a Taylor K-2006 or a TF-100 (link in my sig line). The TF-100 is a better value and uses Taylor reagents.

If your CYA is 100, you should do at least a 50% drain and then refill and retest.
 

watermaverick

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 15, 2010
23
San Antonio, Texas
Howdy Mod

Thank you for the clarity and sound advice. I'm trying to make the changes happen asap since it's really hot here and the family is anxious to swim. The drain goes quickly with a sump pump but the fill is tedious and slow - even with two garden hoses. I ran into a speed bump at your online store - I tried to purchase the nuclear test kit tonight from the online store but there's a problem with my email and Vista and SP2 - strange, I purchase a lot of merchandise online and never had this problem before...can you help me?
 

257WbyMag

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Feb 23, 2008
5,061
Denton, TX
If you are talking about TFTestkits.net, you can email them at TFTestkits@gmail.com. He is really quick to reply.

Aside from everything, if you guys are dying to swim, you can do that even with the CYA up there. You just have to get enough FC in there to make it sanitary. Get enough chlorine in there to get the FC to around 10 and it will be fine to swim in. Just shouldn't be lower than 7.
 

watermaverick

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 15, 2010
23
San Antonio, Texas
Thanks again. I will begin the search today for liquid chlorine (hopefully other than Clorox bleach).

The plan is to drain the pool this weekend. When I drained it completely last March it took 1.5 hours while the fill took 31 hours with 2 hoses. Should I drain 75% or all of it? I'm planning to drain in the late afternoon and refill at night so the plaster isn't exposed to sunlight.

When I started up after the refill this is what I was directed to do by my LPSS:
3 gallons liquid CA - wait 24 hrs then add
2 qts. Muriatic Acid diluted -wait 4 hrs then add
5# ChlorBrite Shock
Test results after refill and adding chems were:
FC: 5+
TC: 5+
pH: 7.3
TA: 120
CH: 170
CA: 50
TDS: 400 (reduced from a whopping 1500 ppm!)

FYI -Tap water test results were:
ph: 7.8
TA: 200
CH: 210
TDS: 300
I need to go about things a bit differently if I am to incorporate the BBB system in my pool so please tell me as to what you ntk to advise me on what chemicals to buy ahead of time and how long to wait after I put them in, etc...
Thank you so much
 

watermaverick

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 15, 2010
23
San Antonio, Texas
Ok - Pool supply store is giving me a sub pump so I can remove 60% of my pool water (according to your calculator Jason -thanks)
Until I can plan the drain I've added 5 gallons (actually 1.42 gal) of 6% bleach and watched the numbers rise and then fall back - I just added another 5 gallons and will watch for the overnight results - pool is crystal clear and as clean as I can get it. Earlier today the water was stinging on contact and smelled strongly of chlorine.
Father's Day weekend and I want to swim with the family but I'm concerned about the #s (other than the CYA) doing damage...thoughts?
FC: 3.6
TC: 3.6
CC: 0
pH: 7.3
TA: 130
CH: 130
CYA: 100
Will retest all in the a.m.
 

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