Lost all faith in the pool store....help

Algae problems in swimming pool water.
Green (cloudy) water or slimy pool walls.
Black algae. Mustard algae. Pink or white pool mold.
jokrswylde
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Lost all faith in the pool store....help

Postby jokrswylde » Tue 27 May, 2008 19:42

Sorry my first post is asking for help. but I am out of ideas. I have a 10,000 gallon above ground oval. Had a perfect swimming season last year, but found out A LOT of leaves got into my pool over the winter (cheap cover). Anyway opened it up 10 days ago to brown, stinky, swampy water. Immediately turned the pump and filter on, shocked, added chlorine tabs in the skimmer, and began the long job of raking leaves. Next day, no difference so I added two more pounds of Pool Breeze Shock Treatment and Superchlorinator.

Fast forward two days...no visible change, soi I go to pool store number one. He tells me he doesn't need to test my water, just to keep shocking daily until it clears. Sells me 10 gallon bucket of Shock + superchlorinator and told me to do half one day and half the next. (Total Shock treatment 8 lbs so far)

Fast forward three days and no visible improvement..although the swampy smell is gone. So last Friday I went to pool store #2, where they did a ***state of the art*** water analysis. Here is what I got:
Sat. Index -.81
Free chlorine 1.5
pH 6.9
CYA 11
Total alkalinity 92
Calcium Hardness 109
No metals

So I spent a bunch of money on calcium hardness increaser, 8 pounds of Stabilizer, more shock +superchlorinator, pH increaser, algacide, flucculant, etc.
I followed the instructions to a T.

Fast forward three days. Water has turned from murky brown to pea green. So I take the sample back for testing and get the following:

Sat. Index -.44
Free chlorine 0
pH 7.2
CYA 0
Total alkalinity 80
calcium hardness 223
No metals

So, a different saleman says I need 8 more pounds of stabilizer, an alkalinity increaser, more shock, and chlorine tabs.

I don't know whether to shell out the more bucks, for what seems like essentially the same chemicals as three days ago, or just start dumping bleach in. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Oh yeah, the first *expert* told me to run my filter and pump while adding the chemicals, the second **expert** told me I wasted a lot of the chemicals by filtering them, and that I should take out my filter cartridge while adding teh chemicals. I am so turned aroiund I don't know what to do!!!!!!!!!!!!


muss08
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Postby muss08 » Tue 27 May, 2008 21:38

Some pool stores are great, some only want you money. First things first, get your own test kit. I use the Taylor K 2006 and it is very reliable and very accurate. It is the best investment you will make in your pool. As you can see the two different tests gave very different results. Your CYA should not have dropped unless you drained some of the pool and added some water. They sold you calcium harndess increaser that you do not need. 100ppm is fine. Again- you had stabalizer in your pool and if you added the 8lbs you should have more than 11- not 0. Just an FYI shock is a verb and not a noun. When you shock the pool you are superchlorinating. So shock+superchlorinator doesnt make sense. Sounds like a ripoff. Your TA is perfect! 80-120ppm is ideal. You do not need to increase unless you are going to lower your pH which is fine as well. Always run the pump when adding chemicals. The pool needs to circulate to properly dissolve and mix in the chemicals. Even is any chemicals get stuck on the filter they will still dissolve as normal. First, get your test kit. You should be able to get it at any pool store or can easily be found online. If you dont go with the Taylor K 2006 (2006 is important because the 2005 online tests chlorine to 5ppm where the 2006 tests to 50ppm-important when shocking) make sure the chlorine test is the FAS-DPD test and it tests for all parameters listed above. Also, most of your chemicals you can find at the grocery store or homedepot/lowes. For example, to raise your TA you would use regualr arm and hammer baking soda. SAME EXACT INGREDIENTS AND MUCH CHEAPER! What is the active ingredient in the "shock"? If it says dichlor or trichlor anywhere in it then it is also adding stabalizer. If it says cal hypo it also increases calcium hardness. I would recommend using regular unscented 6% clorox bleach for your shocking. Again, cheaper and just as effective. When you get a reliable test kit post your readings and we can from there. (If your CYA is really 0 now then shock level is 10ppm)
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jokrswylde
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Postby jokrswylde » Wed 28 May, 2008 16:30

So should I remove the filter and run the pump to mix/circulate the chemicals.

They told me to pour stabilizer directly into the skimmer, which I did, and when I went to drain my pump to clean my cartridge, just about all of the stabilizer came out with the pump water. Thats a lot of wasted money imo.

Since it will be this weekend before I can get a test kit, how much bleach should I add until Friday? I just bought 5 gallons, and added 2.5 gallons. Should I do the rest tomorrow or wait?

Again, thanks for the help!
muss08
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Postby muss08 » Wed 28 May, 2008 20:36

Okay, if you have more stabalizer I would go ahead and add 3 pounds. What you want to do is stuff an old sock with the stabalizer and put the sock in your skimmer. Stabalizer takes a long time to dissolve so this should get it to dissolve without adhering to your cartridge. You can also mix the stabalizer in a large bucket of water so it dissolves in the water then pour the water over a return. I cant stand when companies tell you pour it into the skimmers. It clogs up all filters, especially if you have a cartridge or DE filter. Bleach- double check to make sure your jugs are really 1 gallon or 128oz. Most bleach jugs come in 96oz. jugs but you can find 128oz jugs. 2 1/2 gallons would bring you to about 14ppm while 2 1/2 jugs of 96oz would bring you to about 11ppm. However, i guarantee alot of that chlorine is already used up killing bacteria and if you added it during daylight hours a bit has already burnt off. I would go ahead and add 1 1/2 more tonight. The other one first thing in the morning. Then you should probably buy 4 more. Add two more mid afternoon and the other two at sundown. Then get your test kit. This should keep your chlorine at a good level until you can get the kit and test for yourself. Hopefully you get this tonight (thurs.) If not add the 2 1/2 in the morning. And still get 4 more like I mentioned above.
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Postby Guest » Wed 28 May, 2008 21:42

there's some not so bright pool guys out there. you won't be able to do anything without raising your cyanuric acid. and no, shocking a pool will not raise your CYA enough to see a noticeable raise in PPM. in a swamp situation like you have, i would use panty hose to add the cyanuric acid, or go buy some liquid conditioner (CYA). put the granular CYA into several panty hoses and dangle them into the water. then i would dose it with 5 pounds of dichlor, followed by a copper based algicide. once the pool becomes cloudy and blue, then add a metal chelater, followed by soda ash and a flocculant treatment. with a flocculant, you would have to remove your cartridge from the filter, and then remove the drain plug while vacuuming the debris. you could have a crystal clear pool within 48 hours.
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Postby muss08 » Wed 28 May, 2008 22:15

I am going to disagree with pool user. no offense. for every 10ppm added to the pool with dichlor you will add 9ppm in CYA. That is noticeable. 5lbs of dichlor in a 10000 gallon pool will increase CYA by about 30ppm.
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Postby Guest » Wed 28 May, 2008 22:54

for every 10ppm added to the pool with dichlor you will add 9ppm in CYA.


i know what you mean, that's what a lot of companies teach, but if that were the case, then this person's CYA would currently be well over 30 PPM after adding the 8 lbs of shock.

even still, if the CYA were to get too high, vac'ing to waste and floccing would dilute the chemicals a good deal.

i'm not arguing, to each their own. we all have our own advice from experience.
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Postby chem geek » Thu 29 May, 2008 16:04

I actually used Dichlor at the beginning of this season to increase the CYA level and it increased exactly as predicted. It is a chemical fact that for every 10 ppm FC added by Dichlor, it increases the CYA by 9 ppm. For Trichlor, for every 10 ppm FC that is added, it also increases CYA by 6 ppm. For Cal-Hypo, for every 10 ppm FC that is added, it also increases Calcium Hardness (CH) by 7 ppm. These are chemical facts. (see Dichlor here , Trichlor here , Cyanuric Acid (CYA) here and note that chlorine measurements such as FC use chlorine gas as a reference so the molecular weight for "ppm" to use with chlorine measurements is 70.91 g/mole).

If one has a lot of dilution, then you can see less of a CYA rise over time. Also, the CYA test isn't very accurate in the low range and CYA takes a while to get measured depending on the form it is added (pure CYA can take up to a week to fully get measured -- Dichlor is usually much faster).

Another personal experience I had years ago when I first got my pool was that my CYA levels climbed from an initial 30 ppm to about 150 ppm after just 1-1/2 years of use with Trichlor tabs/pucks in a floating feeder. This was with an opaque electric safety cover so my chlorine usage was low, but I also have a cartridge filter so there is minimal dilution (i.e. no backwashing). 1-1/2 seasons is about 10 months (7 month season) and my chlorine usage was between an average of 0.5 and 1.0 ppm FC per day (chlorine usage during the winter was minimal). At 1 ppm FC per day, this translates to 0.6 * 30 * 10 = 180 ppm of CYA or 90 ppm at 0.5 ppm FC per day.

Many, many pool users get algae in their pools because their CYA levels climb from continued use of Trichlor pucks/tabs and/or frequent use of or shocking with Dichlor. If you do not raise the FC level to keep the FC/CYA ratio roughly constant (at a minimum FC of 7.5% of the CYA level for manually dosed pools), then the pool is at risk of getting algae (the risk depends on the phosphate level and the 7.5% rule is good for up to around 3000-4000 ppb in phosphates which is very high). You CAN use stabilized chlorine with rising CYA levels and prevent algae even with lower FC IF you use a supplemental algaecide such as PolyQuat 60 (up to a point) or a phosphate remover. The FC/CYA ratio determining chlorine's effectiveness is also based on chemical facts (equilibrium) though the rule is an approximation mostly reasonable when the CYA >> FC by a factor of 5 or more. You can read more about the chlorine/CYA relationship here .

Richard

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