I went ahead and filled the spa, brushed it, and started the pump. It immediately got dirty due to all the filth in the plumbing. I’ll test the water soon and add sodium bicarb and MA as needed. This will be a good warmup for the whole thing.
pH dropped to 7.6 and haven’t tested TA yet. I’m estimating the volume of the spa at 900-1000 gallons. Based on the drop in the pH, I’m pretty accurate there. I have the pump running and agitating the water, so pH should rise a bit by tomorrow and I’ll see where I’m at with TA. So far so good
The pH test will really help you dial in the size just like you just saw! GUrrrrr on the pipes being filled with yuck! I wish they would flush them out BEFORE plastering being done! I will have to ask @bdavis466 when and how it can be done to help keep this happening.
The water is all clean in the spa now. I just tested the water in the spa and the pH rose as I expected it to. I overshot slightly on the TA, but that will come back down a bit with MA additions, so I think I'm ok there. Here are the numbers:
@bdavis466 , let me know if I'm getting out of the realm of safe on my numbers. I don't want to ruin anything. The good news is, if I did go overboard on the sodium bicarb, I'll be mixing this with the pool water very soon, so it'll all come right back down to some very low numbers. Here is a pic from this morning.
We have a pool! Everything is working just as I'd expect it to. I'm still fiddling around with pump speeds to get things how I want them. I guess the goal with pump speed is to make sure the skimmer is working effectively and that the filter has enough pressure to do its thing? The filter pressure seems a little low when I get the RPM's on the pump down around 1700. Can anybody tell me the minimum pressure I want in the filter for it to work well?
Other than that, I tested the water and got identical results to the spa fill water. That makes me think my testing is pretty consistent thus far, which is a good thing. I added sodium bicarb and MA and will test again before I head to work in a few hours. @bdavis466, should I still be aiming for a pH of 7.8 and TA of 275? The water temp is 75 degrees, so I don't know if that plays into this at all if I'm shooting for a particular CSI. Here's a picture with all the fancy stuff turned on.
There’s really no “set” rpm needed for a cartridge filter. It will always be on the low side unless running at full rpm’s. After your start up is finished, and everything is ready for swimming, then you can start fooling around with pump run times and rpm’s to keep your pool clean.
Now don’t you have some brushing to do?! 🤨
Haha, don't worry. I already brushed it once today, right before I started everything up. I'll try to brush it again tonight if I'm feeling up to it after work. Thanks for the info on the filter pressure. It is only at 3psi with the pump at 1700 RPM's, so it just seems crazy low.
Ok, maybe I should shoot for a TA more around the 250ppm range. I need to test my CH since that appears to play a role in CSI as well. Do you recommend maintaining a pH of 7.8 and then adjusting the TA to hit the CSI goal or should I aim for 275 TA and adjust the pH to hit the CSI?
Sounds good. I ended up using Leslie’s Stain and Scale Prevent. I couldn’t find anywhere I could get the products you recommended in time. Hopefully this stuff isn’t terrible. I also just got the Beautec Scale and Stain controller that I can add as well, if necessary.
Tested the water this morning and got good results:
CSI: exactly +0.5
I overshot slightly on the bicarb, but again, that will come down with MA additions and it put my CSI right where I want it. I also tested for FC and it barely registered. I’m guessing somewhere around 0.1, but that will slowly rise as the trichlor does its thing. Time to do some brushing.
Perfect, that’s the impression I got from the other big bicarb startup thread. I wanted to test it just to see where I was starting from. I’m not even going to bother with testing CYA for a while.
Just finished the third brushing and got a little bit of plaster dust, some loose pebbles, and some good old-fashioned dirt stirred up. It’ll be nice when I can just drop a robot in and let it brush for me. Brushing is no quick chore.