Problems understanding test readings

Problems relating to pH and total alkalinity.
Increase ph, increase TA. Reduce pH, reduce TA.
pH chemistry advice and techniques for the pool.
gardennorm

Problems understanding test readings

Postby gardennorm » Wed 13 May, 2009 14:23

Hi all
Im new to pool testing and maintenance and following a basic test i have the following results
PH Yellow ideal colour should be purple
Chlorine dark orange ideal colour should be pale yellow

Im unsure wether to shock the pool or add PH+ or do both or neither
The water is chrystal clear and there is a slight smell of chlorine
I also clean the filters twice a week
If anyone could help i would be very grateful

thanks


chem geek
Pool Industry Leader
Pool Industry Leader
Posts: 2382
Joined: Thu 21 Jun, 2007 21:27
Location: San Rafael, California

Problems understanding test readings

Postby chem geek » Thu 14 May, 2009 03:14

It sounds like you have test strips. They are usually not that accurate. You also should have a good drop-based test kit, either the Taylor K-2006 you can get at a good online price here or the TF100 kit from tftestkits.net here with the latter kit having 36% more volume of reagents so is less expensive per test.

You can then learn much more by reading at the Pool School .
Guest

Problems understanding test readings

Postby Guest » Fri 15 May, 2009 07:48

Thanks for your reply i will invest in a more advanced test kit

Just to add im using the odo and phenol red test solutions.
The results as described above are not changing and if anyone has any ideas i would be very grateful.

thanks
norm
kfkolonel

Problems understanding test readings

Postby kfkolonel » Fri 15 May, 2009 09:45

It sounds to me like you should increase your PH slightly, to get in the range of 7.2 - 7.8 . (I assume those numbers are on your tester.) You could use commercial brand name PH increaser, but a much cheaper solution is to go to the grocery and buy Borax. You may hesitate to do this, but read about grocery store chemicals. I've been using them for years and saving money.

It also sounds like your chlorine may be a little low. You don't say how you add cholorine regularly. If chlorine is low, that does not mean it must be shocked, however. Shock it every week or two--you'll have to experiment to see what works in your situation. Every two weeks works for me, more often in hot weather with lots of use.

Grocery store shocking: Use Chlorox, or the house brand. The site I referenced above tells you how much. It is about half as concentrated as liquid pool chlorinator, so you need to use twice as much, but it is still cheaper.
kfkolonel

Problems understanding test readings

Postby kfkolonel » Fri 15 May, 2009 09:51

Another thought: If you are in doubt about how Chlorox will affect your test, touch you finger to the chlorox and then touch you finger to your tester. (If you use the test strips, just wave a strip above an open Chlorox bottle.) The same with Borax and a PH tester.

The site I referenced also lists Baking soda for Alkalinity increaser. I use it. Yep, the plain old Arm and Hammer stuff, or the store brand.
Guest

Problems understanding test readings

Postby Guest » Sat 16 May, 2009 00:08

Thanks kfkolonel

Ill try your suggestions and let you know what happens
thanks for the tips on alternative chemicals im off to the supermarket with my list
Paris

Problems understanding test readings

Postby Paris » Tue 25 May, 2010 13:50

gardennorm wrote:Hi all
Im new to pool testing and maintenance and following a basic test i have the following results
PH Yellow ideal colour should be purple
Chlorine dark orange ideal colour should be pale yellow

Im unsure wether to shock the pool or add PH+ or do both or neither
The water is chrystal clear and there is a slight smell of chlorine
I also clean the filters twice a week
If anyone could help i would be very grateful

thanks


It seams you are making the same mistake as i did when i was new to pool chemistry.
Your test is a basic two readings, total chlorine and ph.

You are reading high chlorine because you are reading total chlorine. Most probably you have no free chlorine. Buy a better test kit showing free and total chlorine.

Also, if the total chlorine is way high, your ph reading is wrong.

Have a nice day

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