My friends, who now own the TF-100 Test Kit kept going to Leslie's. There was no convincing them. Last year, I gave them the Taylor K-1000 as a gift. For some strange reason, they were holding no chlorine and Leslie's kept providing them excellent results. CYA at 40. Well guess what, the CYA was actually under 20, maybe even lower. A week later, with stabilizer in the pool and a week's worth of SLAMMING, and they have not been back to the pool store since.From a recent experience, they tested my water at zero CYA last weekend. I added enough CYA based off that test to raise to 40ppm. When I got my test kit and tested it myself it was at 90ppm. Now I'm in the process of draining water to get it down. So I wasted money on chemicals and wasting time replacing water.
unless they go outside, their cya test is useless!It may be the same kind, but is it done correctly? Is it read correctly? Is honest and appropriate advice given? Only when you do the tests yourself will you know the answers to those questions.
The reader will say "OVER RANGE" or top out at 5. Assuming they haven't just shocked the pool, at that point I'll usually say something along the lines of "Your chlorine's pretty high, pull the pucks out/turn down the chlorinator and don't add any shock for a couple days. Come back for a follow up test or test the chlorine tomorrow yourself." It's obviously pretty hard to troubleshoot a pool that's not in your backyard and you can't monitor every 12-24 hours. Also most of our customers are using pucks in a chlorinator/skimmer and not the typical method people around here like to use of putting in a little liquid shock every day. Also they probably won't come back for a follow up and then get mad when their pool turns green because they forgot to put the chlorine back in.Thank you for your honest post, TheBombardier.
So if you only use the DPD for FC....what do you tell them when its obviously more than just the 5 ppm the test block tops out at?
They came out (...) and thought my pool must be quite shallow because they could see the main drain so clearly. It's just on six feet deep there. These are the guys who are doing professional pool maintenance and they're not used to pools being that clear. That says a lot I think.
Thank you for the store cost information. I've been to a pool store that used Lamotte testing and they charged $10 for a water sample analysis (waived if you purchased chemicals). I wondered how reasonable the price was, and now I know it is quite fair for people unwilling/uninterested to invest in their own kit or unable to perform the tests themselves give that it is both $5 materials and variable employee time running the actual tests and then conducting the resultant conversation that may or may not end in sales beyond the testing fee.I'll jump into the discussion as a pool store employee. My store actually does use very good testing equipment and software, Lamotte Waterlink Express and Datamate software to be exact, and we have a Lamotte Spinlab as a backup in the store and for our service to do water testing. It costs us $5 just in UDVs or Spinlab cartridges to run any given water test.
We charge $5, also waived if you buy chemicals (very rarely enforced though tbh). We want to at least recoup the materials cost from the people who are going to use our test then go buyThank you for the store cost information. I've been to a pool store that used Lamotte testing and they charged $10 for a water sample analysis (waived if you purchased chemicals). I wondered how reasonable the price was, and now I know it is quite fair for people unwilling/uninterested to invest in their own kit or unable to perform the tests themselves give that it is both $5 materials and variable employee time running the actual tests and then conducting the resultant conversation that may or may not end in sales beyond the testing fee.
That would depend very heavily on where they are, what time of year it is and what time of day it is. You really need to compare your results with a test on a standard solution to see if the lighting you are using is right.unless they go outside, their cya test is useless!
No it just has preloaded ranges that don't change unless you go into the options and change them manually. FC and TC are always 2-4. However we are trained when doing water tests to recognize higher stabilizer levels and to advise customers to more or less double their FC when the stabilizer is over 60. Again, that's just the level of customer service my boss strives for where if you just read the paper you're doing a bad job. And over 100, the printout won't even have any other instructions other than "Stabilizer High: Drain and Refill".Fair enough! Just curious - does the Lamotte software suggest FC levels based on CYA level? (similar to [FC/CYA][/FC/CYA])
There are some of us out here that know our stuff. I learned everything I know from reading the forums here and servicing pools for the first hand experience to verify. I have never posted before, but I have researched extensively through the forums to educate myself so I could do my job better and help customers solve their problems more effectively.Really nice to hear about some good pool stores, thanks again you guys!
I know your frustration. I deal with customers on a near daily basis in season who have had nothing but frustration dealing with some local competition that will go unnamed. The business is built on selling snake oil and cheap Chinese equipment, and it's no secret on this side of the counter how shady some of their business practices are (in fact, the previous owner of my store helped the owner of that store start his business and left when he saw the direction it was going). Not to mention their service and repairs give customers the infinite runaround so they don't have to fix anything ,to the point Aquabot has literally told people to not take their warranty repairs there because they "have no idea what they're doing".When I type pool $tore, I hope it's interpreted as disdain and frustration, but not hate. I applaud the good people in the pool industry who speak out within their industry.
As long as more chems and gadgets can be sold when poor advice is provided, I doubt anything will change. I think the same is true in most retail. It used to be that you had to watch out for few bad eggs, but inside corporate nowadays, if a spreadsheet somewhere shows that another $1000 can be made, and no one can prove it wrong, it happens. It's just the nature of the beast until more buyers vote with their feet than those who also buy a shovel to take up the manure.