Will I ever get our alkalinity and PH lowered?

BPool5

Member
May 29, 2020
19
Illinois
This is our 3rd year having an AGP. Intex 15' X 48". Brand new pool for this summer. Filled the pool last weekend and as it was filling the water was a yellowish green tint. We have well water and had the same issue last year. Brought a sample to Leslie's and they printed out their recommendations with 8 different products we'd need. I'd sent my young adult daughter and told her to just find out what we needed to get the pool ready to use. She brought home a huge bucket of the dry acid and 2 packages of shock and something for algae. Their printout said we need a total of 9 lbs 7 oz of acid and we can add 7 oz at a time every 4 hours. I called them and questioned that I'm going to be doing this acid treatment 19 times and they said that's correct. Assuming I don't run outside in the middle of the night I'd likely do the treatment 3 times per day, that's 7 days with shock treatments too. 7 days until the water is ok to swim in??? My kids are just dying to get in the water and it's so frustrating to tell them to keep waiting. I keep testing the water and PH and alkalinity are still super high. Surely there has to be a faster way to get the pool ready to swim. I've done the algae and 2 shocks treatments. I've probably done 10 dry acid treatments so far. Anything else I can do?
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Hello and welcome to TFP! :wave: LIke another recent new member, I'm going to lay-out a simple plan for you:
- Stop using pool store testing. It's often not accurate and they try (they did) to sell you expensive products that aren't needed.
- You need your own TF-100 (link below) or Taylor K-2006C test kit See Test Kits Compared I recommend the TF-100. There is no substitution for home testing. It's easy to do and you know it's accurate.
- If you haven't opened those products - don't. Take them back or get store credit.
- To lower TA, which is notoriously high in your area, you basically lower it with muriatic acid which also lowers the pH. You then aerate the water to increase the pH while leaving the TA lower. then repeat. See link below.
- You have iron which means keeping the pH well controlled, usually under 7.5. You also need to watch the FC level and keep it balanced with the CYA as noted on the FC/CYA Chart. Keep it on the lower end if you can, but you must avoid algae, so that chart is very important.
- If your pH is under control right now, let everyone swim. You can work on the TA a little each day. No huge rush. Muriatic acid works fast and you go in those cycles I noted above and in the link below. Keep the algae away right now by balancing FC and CYA. That's most important.

Take a look at our ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry and those Vital Links below in my signature. We'll help you as needed. Thanks for posting.

 

Richard320

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 6, 2010
23,932
San Dimas, CA (LA County)
Welcome! :wave:

Two things
1) What are you using to test pH?
2) Is this fill water the same water the children bathe in?

Just forget the TA. pH is what's important. If it's okay, kids can get in. It will rise if you have high TA, and when it does you can add acid to reduce it. Acid lowers pH and TA at the same time. pH will go back up, TA stays where you put it. So over time, TA will come down. There's no reason to go to great pains to do it
 

BPool5

Member
May 29, 2020
19
Illinois
Thank you for the replies. I will look into getting a test kit. I’ve just always used the test strips. The first year we had a pool it was pretty much hands off. I tested daily and rarely added anything to the water. Coincidentally that was the year we had our well bleached or something, cant remember exactly as my husband arranged it. Last year was a constant struggle from the day we filled it. Water was never totally clear.

I’m up to about 12 acid treatments and 2 different brand test strips show the same results of

FCI 0 (even though floating tablet holder has several small tablets)
TA 180
PH 7.8
CYA 0

To answer above question, our water in our house is taken care of by a water specialist with iron filters, reverse osmosis, softener, etc. The outside water has no filters on it.
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
BP, while the test strip results aren't much help, you can be sure you need CYA and FC to keep the water sanitary and clean. Don't worry about the TA right now. Accurate drop testing is priority number one, along with getting the FC and CYA up. Use our PoolMath APP to determine how much chlorine is needed to increase the FC to 3 ppm. At the same time, determine how much stabilizer is required to increase the CYA to 30 ppm. Use the sock-soaking method for the stabilizer. After you add the chlorine/bleach, I recommend you test again in about 30-0 minutes because I have a feeling your FC has been low for too long. While you wait for a TF-100 or Taylor K-200C test it, at the very least consider grabbing an HTH-5 or 7-Way drop test kit from Walmart. At least it's better than test strips.