Winter chemistry

Mar 22, 2008
5
0
Pennsylvania
#1
Last fall I closed the pool the way I normally do with my chemistry the way I wanted it. Unfortunately, my wife decided to pump the water off the pool cover. She must have had the pump on a seam because she drained about 2 feet of water out of the pool. After more water accumulated on the cover (rain and snow) she pumped that water under the cover and into the pool.

I tested the water and my numbers are off. PH is 8.2+, Alk is 50, and Calcium is 130. It is this last number that concerns me because this is a plaster finish pool. Should I add calcium chloride now, or can I wait until I open the pool next month?
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Platinum Supporter
TFP Expert
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
31,264
3
Sebring, Florida
tftestkits.net
#2
Hi, Zelmo,

Welcome to the forum. I know this wasn't your question, but I'd get that ph down ASAP, Pronto, Andale', FAST!!! :lol: :lol: If it is really above 8.2, that's probably as high as your test goes so it could be much higher and, as such, could cause some serious issues with your pool. The reason I say "if" it's really above 8.2 is the Alk results you report. I don't remember seeing alk tests that low reported with pH that high. Others may be able to explain that but, if the pH is right, you need to get it down before you do anything else.

I do not see your calcium as "dangerously" low but, generally, speaking, most of us think of 200-250 being a really good number for an IG pool....even a littler higher but not above 400. I believe you can bring it up virtually anytime.....I'm not sure how dissolveable (is that a word?) it'll be in the low pool water temps but I doubt it will hurt a thing.

lower that pH.
 
Mar 22, 2008
5
0
Pennsylvania
#3
Thanks. I have never added chemicals during the winter before. In order to add acid to get the PH down I will need to remove some or all of the cover. How do I get it circulated?
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Platinum Supporter
TFP Expert
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
31,264
3
Sebring, Florida
tftestkits.net
#4
That's a really good point and this ole' Southern boy (who's never winterized a pool in his life) didn't think that thru before I suggested it. Rather than speculate, I'll let someone with pool cover experience answer that question.....I'm sure there's someone on the forum who's had to do it.

How are you testing that pH?....with test strips? If so, is there a pool store near you or another method of testing you could do to confirm that your pH is really that high?
 
Mar 22, 2008
5
0
Pennsylvania
#5
I am using the Taylor kit that came with the PS-234 to test it. I have an electronic Ph meter on an aquarium that I can use to get a real accurate reading. I will get to that later today.

Edited:

I found the Pool Calculator on this site and when I plug my numbers in the Calcite Saturation Index turns out pretty good. If I change the Ph it will be out of whack unless I change everything. What problems are likely because of the high Ph?


BTW - I am really happy I found this site, and I will be ordering refills for my PS-234.
 

chem geek

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Expert
Mar 28, 2007
12,082
2
San Rafael, CA USA
#6
I wouldn't panic. Is your water temperature still cold, say at 60F or below? If so, then even at a pH of 8.4 (higher than the 8.2 max you measure), a TA of 50 and CH of 130, your water would be roughly in balance. Assuming your numbers are correct, the fact that your TA and CH are so low means that a high pH is OK for water balance (not for swimming with eyes open in the water, but you aren't doing that yet). Nevertheless, it would be good to at least get the pH into the range of the test kit, so around 8.0, so that you can at least be "sure" of the numbers. Then, you can take your time with further adjustments later on.

As for adding acid when the cover is on, I wouldn't do that. The acid is VERY concentrated and takes a bit to get it diluted sufficiently. You want to pour the acid very slowly over a return flow (i.e. pump on and circulating) in the deep end, but I'd at least have the cover off in the area where you are pouring and as far away from that area as you can manage (the entire pool does not need to be uncovered).

Richard
 

waste

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Expert
Mar 29, 2007
4,160
0
52
Coastalish 'down easter'
#7
zelmo said:
Thanks. I have never added chemicals during the winter before. In order to add acid to get the PH down I will need to remove some or all of the cover. How do I get it circulated?
Richard's response above withstanding, you can use the pump your wife used to drain the cover to provide the circulation you need to get the acid to mix with the pool water. I'd set it up on the stairs and have the discharge pointed into the pool body and give it a few minutes to get a 'flow pattern' going before dribbling acid in front of the flow.

Welcome to TFP (it's funny, I'd sear that I saw a very similar post this AM before logging onto TFP :wink: ) - it's almost like I've seen you elsewhere :lol:
 
Mar 22, 2008
5
0
Pennsylvania
#8
waste said:
Welcome to TFP (it's funny, I'd sear that I saw a very similar post this AM before logging onto TFP :wink: ) - it's almost like I've seen you elsewhere :lol:
Yes, I posted this in the old forum before I figured out that this forum had been started.

Anyway, I put my probe in a pool water sample and the Ph reading was 8.3. Water temp is 36, so according to the pool calculator I should be OK. I did not retest the TA or CH because those numbers seem logical after putting rain water in. (An aside - didn't Ben have trouble with one of the tests in the PS234? Something about inconsistent drop size?) Next time it rains I will collect some and test the Ph.

I have never opened the pool to find the temp above 55, so I should be fine until I open it if I can keep my wife from adding more rain water.