Help me, Gurus. You're my only hope

The basics of swimming pool maintenance.
New swimming pool owner's questions.
Help getting started with daily pool care.
erinsgarden
Pool Newbie
Pool Newbie
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed 20 Jul, 2011 00:33
My Pool: Intex 16 ft salt water, 1500 gph paper filter pump

Help me, Gurus. You're my only hope

Postby erinsgarden » Wed 20 Jul, 2011 00:48

16 ft intex ultraframe with salt water system: copper .1, free chlorine .2, pH 8.5 (i guess...bright pi,nk) , alkalinity 240. Water has been shocked clarified and I added 1 lb dry acid 10 hours ago then rechecked pH ...still hot pink. Water is blue greenish and cloudy. It was crystal clear with green non slimy powder at the bottom. I tried to vacuum with intex water hose vacuum and it all reentered the water. I havea new vacuumon order. H.E. L. P.


cpo2go
Swimming Pool Wizard
Swimming Pool Wizard
Posts: 67
Joined: Wed 20 Jul, 2011 01:09
My Pool: 27,000 gal, pebble tec, all Pentair equipment; DE filter, 3/4 hp, 400k heater, Poolvergnuegen 4x Pool Cleaner
Location: santa barbara, ca

Help me, Gurus. You're my only hope

Postby cpo2go » Wed 20 Jul, 2011 01:25

If the "green slimy powder" came back into the pool, your filter probably has a hole in it. That's the first problem. Another thing is the high alkalinity and pH. Keep using the acid, dry or liquid, until you get the alkalinity down to 150, at least. 100-110 would be ideal. This will free up the pH, which is locked. Anything over 200, or so, (alkalinity) is going to be a false reading most likely so check and adjust often. Once Alk is right, you'll be able to get the pH in range (7.4-7.6). This will allow the chlorine to go to work again. It's doing next to nothing right now.
This is just a start but the filter problem needs to be addressed to remove anything and to ensure clean water.
Hope that helps...Good luck! :thumbup:
http://www.cpo2go.com
Pool and Spa Water Care Simplified.
Easy to use, fast results.
erinsgarden1

Help me, Gurus. You're my only hope

Postby erinsgarden1 » Wed 20 Jul, 2011 08:07

I added 2.5 poundsof dry acid with no effect on the pH. Is that possible? Also, vacuum was the little mesh bag one that wasn't fine enoughto trap powder.
cpo2go
Swimming Pool Wizard
Swimming Pool Wizard
Posts: 67
Joined: Wed 20 Jul, 2011 01:09
My Pool: 27,000 gal, pebble tec, all Pentair equipment; DE filter, 3/4 hp, 400k heater, Poolvergnuegen 4x Pool Cleaner
Location: santa barbara, ca

Help me, Gurus. You're my only hope

Postby cpo2go » Wed 20 Jul, 2011 12:20

dry acid has a greater effect on alkalinity. This is fine because the high alkalinity will cause the pH to lock up. Dropping the alkalinity is the priority. That's always the first adjustment to make. Keep trying to drop that number to a manageable range, between 100-150. Then you will be able to better more the pH number.
A trick to help to make the mesh bag hold finer stuff is to put a cloth inside it. A T-shirt or dish cloth lining the inside of the bag does a better job if you don't have a vacuum to trap it all in the filter. Another trick is to direct all suction to a floor drain, if you have one, by putting a tennis ball in the skimmer port. Then, brush the debris into the drain and it will go straight into the filter. Make sure to open all closed suction ports after you do this or someone could be trapped, stuck at the bottom of the pool. Not what either of us want :thumbdown:
http://www.cpo2go.com
Pool and Spa Water Care Simplified.
Easy to use, fast results.
chem geek
Pool Industry Leader
Pool Industry Leader
Posts: 2382
Joined: Thu 21 Jun, 2007 21:27
Location: San Rafael, California

Help me, Gurus. You're my only hope

Postby chem geek » Wed 20 Jul, 2011 22:22

cpo2go wrote:dry acid has a greater effect on alkalinity.

This is absolutely, positively, NOT true. The type of strong acid that you use nor the way you add it has absolutely nothing to do with the change in TA. The TA will drop from acid addition and is determined solely by the amount of acid you add (and its concentration, of course).

25-1/2 fluid ounces of full-strength Muriatic Acid (31.45% Hydrochloric Acid) in 10,000 gallons will lower the Total Alkalinity (TA) by 10 ppm.
34-1/3 ounces weight of Dry Acid (93.2% Sodium Bisulfate) in 10,000 gallons will lower the TA by 10 ppm.

See this paper and this link .

The way to lower the TA efficiently via acid addition and aeration at low pH is described in this post.

With the name "cpo2go" I assume you have taken the CPO course. If so, then you may be interested in reading Certified Pool Operator (CPO) training -- What is not taught .
cpo2go
Swimming Pool Wizard
Swimming Pool Wizard
Posts: 67
Joined: Wed 20 Jul, 2011 01:09
My Pool: 27,000 gal, pebble tec, all Pentair equipment; DE filter, 3/4 hp, 400k heater, Poolvergnuegen 4x Pool Cleaner
Location: santa barbara, ca

Help me, Gurus. You're my only hope

Postby cpo2go » Mon 01 Aug, 2011 13:17

Chem Geek-
I feel more comfortable adding greater amounts of fast dissolving dry acid as opposed to liquid because of the channeling and, therefore, would lower TA faster. Perhaps I should have been more clear.


The advice I gave was sound and, if you're not disputing that, you're only confusing the pool owner who has come here for help.

Yes, I have been certified by the NSPF as a CPO. I agree that the information taught is incomplete but it covers a lot of ground and isn't Wrong with what it does teach. There is just far more to teach than can be covered in 16 hours. I have also been a member of IPSSA for over 6 years. They also require a chemistry test in order to be a member. This test, as with the CPO course, is incomplete, and, admittedly elementary, but unless the industry is prepared to send all of us to Harvard for a degree in chemistry, it is what it is. Being that I understand this, I have read, and continually reference, the IPSSA Basic Training Manual Part 1- Chemicals. It is far more in depth as it takes on the task of chemistry only, as opposed to the CPO course which covers much more ground.

I have been active as a participant in expos, both in the classes and on the floor. I have been featured in seminars taught by Hayward Commercial as well as The Millionaire Poolman. I have attended classes on energy efficiency, hydraulics, basic, intermediate and advanced chemistry and more specific classes geared at training service techs on individual pieces of equipment put on by the manufacturers and IPSSA. I have been paid thousands of dollars just to consult and I have personally maintained residential and commercial pools in my hometown for years.

I read your report addressing what isn't taught in the CPO course and I agree with most of it. Some of it is too speculative, however, as chemistry is all about facts. Numbers are absolute and formulas are indisputable. Unfortunately, in the real world of maintaining pools and spas, there are unique variables and sets of circumstances that make each pool it's own calculation. When there are problems, they need to be addressed and simply stating "facts" doesn't replace the use of algaecides, flocculants, phosphate removers, metal removers and other specialty chemicals.

In addition to that, the test kits and the tests that are performed simply do not cover all the factors you discussed.

Our industry isn't perfect but we all do the best we can with the tools we're given and it's up to each individual to pursue more knowledge and to better themselves and, collectively, our industry. Too many pool owners are already put off by pool service companies and think that by putting a cleaner in the pool, they do a better job that a service tech. I have seen this sentiment echoed in Many different forums.

I have been working in this industry for many years and I am only interested in improving it on a larger scale. All I do is pool and chemically related math and making those things easily and readily available to, both pool/spa owners, as well as, pool service companies. I feel I can help more pool and spa owners this way as opposed to just the small amount of local pool owners I can reach in Santa Barbara County, where I live.

With all of your knowledge and activity here, I hope that you, too, are able to better impact the Swimming Pool and Spa Industry so that we can all move forward as a whole. We both know the industry needs it.
http://www.cpo2go.com
Pool and Spa Water Care Simplified.
Easy to use, fast results.
chem geek
Pool Industry Leader
Pool Industry Leader
Posts: 2382
Joined: Thu 21 Jun, 2007 21:27
Location: San Rafael, California

Help me, Gurus. You're my only hope

Postby chem geek » Tue 02 Aug, 2011 12:22

cpo2go wrote:I feel more comfortable adding greater amounts of fast dissolving dry acid as opposed to liquid because of the channeling and, therefore, would lower TA faster. Perhaps I should have been more clear.

The advice I gave was sound and, if you're not disputing that, you're only confusing the pool owner who has come here for help.

So you prefer to use dry acid because you feel you can add more safely because it disperses better. That really depends on how you add it. If one dumps dry acid in one place in calm water, it can also settle near the bottom though it does dissolve relatively quickly and I would agree that doing the same in calm water with Muriatic Acid is probably more dangerous. However, with either acid, if it is poured slowly over a return flow with the pump running, then it gets dispersed, and for extra safety one can lightly brush the side and bottom of the pool where it is added for even more thorough mixing. That should address any channeling issue (one should NOT "slug" or create an "acid column"). One can also use half-strength (15%-16%) Muriatic Acid which has significantly less fuming.

As for sulfates, they not only affect saltwater chlorine generators, but are damaging to plaster and concrete. See this thread including my post at the end with multiple real-world (not just scientific paper) references and this scientific paper .

cpo2go wrote:Yes, I have been certified by the NSPF as a CPO. I agree that the information taught is incomplete but it covers a lot of ground and isn't Wrong with what it does teach. There is just far more to teach than can be covered in 16 hours. I have also been a member of IPSSA for over 6 years. They also require a chemistry test in order to be a member. This test, as with the CPO course, is incomplete, and, admittedly elementary, but unless the industry is prepared to send all of us to Harvard for a degree in chemistry, it is what it is. Being that I understand this, I have read, and continually reference, the IPSSA Basic Training Manual Part 1- Chemicals. It is far more in depth as it takes on the task of chemistry only, as opposed to the CPO course which covers much more ground.

There are actually some things that are just plain wrong, not just incomplete. There is less of that in the CPO course, but in the IPSSA books there is much wrong about the chlorine/CYA relationship (and some other areas). This is discussed in this thread and in this post . I have been in contact with the author of the IPSSA books, Bob Lowry, as well. I extensively reviewed and sent comments/corrections for both the CPO book and the IPSSA books that Bob was gracious to send to me at no charge. Unfortunately, no changes have been made to either (yet).

(continued due to too many URLs in one post...)
chem geek
Pool Industry Leader
Pool Industry Leader
Posts: 2382
Joined: Thu 21 Jun, 2007 21:27
Location: San Rafael, California

Help me, Gurus. You're my only hope

Postby chem geek » Tue 02 Aug, 2011 12:24

(...continued from previous post)

cpo2go wrote:I read your report addressing what isn't taught in the CPO course and I agree with most of it. Some of it is too speculative, however, as chemistry is all about facts. Numbers are absolute and formulas are indisputable. Unfortunately, in the real world of maintaining pools and spas, there are unique variables and sets of circumstances that make each pool it's own calculation. When there are problems, they need to be addressed and simply stating "facts" doesn't replace the use of algaecides, flocculants, phosphate removers, metal removers and other specialty chemicals.

In addition to that, the test kits and the tests that are performed simply do not cover all the factors you discussed.

There are tens of thousands of pool owners on multiple pool forums who maintain their pools with appropriate FC/CYA ratios to prevent algae growth and use no algaecides, clarifiers, flocculants, phosphate removers, or most other specialty chemicals except for metal sequestrants when metals are present (and some use borates). Even if problems occur from lack of attention or intentionally letting a pool go over the winter, the pools are cleared without the use of specialty chemicals (i.e. using physical removal, filtration, and chlorine alone -- see this thread as an example).

Now I'm not saying that this approach works for pool services that only visit a pool once a week -- it obviously does not since chlorine normally needs to be added more frequently (some pool services are an exception, such as Pool Chlor that uses higher CYA and wider FC swings), so the use of Trichlor tabs is more common and that requires some sort of algae prevention (Polyquat, borates, phosphate removers, copper ions) or water dilution as the CYA climbs. It also is not practical for such services where time is of the essence so fast clearing is required and clarifiers or flocculants can help in some cases (or ProTeam® System Support for seriously fouled pools).

cpo2go wrote:Our industry isn't perfect but we all do the best we can with the tools we're given and it's up to each individual to pursue more knowledge and to better themselves and, collectively, our industry. Too many pool owners are already put off by pool service companies and think that by putting a cleaner in the pool, they do a better job that a service tech. I have seen this sentiment echoed in Many different forums.

People are willing to pay for service that they perceive to be of value. If I didn't want to take the time to maintain my own pool, I'd pay a pool service to do it, but since it only takes about 5 minutes twice a week to test pH and chlorine and add more chlorinating liquid (I have a mostly opaque electric safety cover), plus brushing the pool weekly (part of my "exercise" on the weekends) and since the chemical costs are only $15 per month for my 16,000 gallon pool, the service would have to be pretty inexpensive to be worthwhile. There are many, many people who would prefer a service to take care of their pool and there's nothing wrong with that. The problem is mostly for those maintaining their own pools where pool stores withhold materially important information the consumer needs to know to make an informed purchase decision. They do this because this information is intentionally not disclosed to them by the manufacturers. The industry is a multi-billion dollar chemical business where the higher profit margin is in the specialty chemicals and where Trichlor tabs are a big business (and, of course, they are convenient since they are slow-dissolving).

cpo2go wrote:With all of your knowledge and activity here, I hope that you, too, are able to better impact the Swimming Pool and Spa Industry so that we can all move forward as a whole. We both know the industry needs it.

Thank you for your contribution as well. Amen to bringing more integrity to the industry, which by the way I am not a member of (the tag on my account says "Pool Industry Leader" due to the number of posts I've made, but I do not work in the industry and am just a pool homeowner).

Return to “Basics for New Pool Owners”

Who is online at the Pool Help Forum

Users browsing this forum: Denniswiseman and 1 guest