when to use algaecide

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Old 07-31-06, 11:48 AM
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when to use algaecide

when & why do you use algaecide? doesn't/shouldn't chlorine kill algae?

sometimes we get a yellowish film all over on the bottom, and maybe a more concentrated patch here or there, more up on the side. we've been brushing it loose & vac'ing it up. is that the "mustard algae" i've read about here? are we dealing with it correctly or do we need an algaecide or shock or what?

thanks!
 
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Old 07-31-06, 01:22 PM
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Think of it like this (although this is not really what happens)

Algae gets immune to chlorine. To counteract that you shock the pool once a week regardless if you think it needs it or not.

Use an algaecide once a week as a preventative measure.
 
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Old 07-31-06, 05:08 PM
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yes it may appear that you have mustard algea. this is a visious algea to get rid of. during your treatment you will need to have EVERYTHING that is associated with your pool in the pool during treatment: floats, vac, hoses, everything.
What i would recommend is to take gal of water to your pool store and allow them to assist you in ridding this prolbem. you will most likely need a copper algeacide along with a super chlorination, and during this treatment you need to run your filter on a 24 hr schedule.
As far as using algeacide you need to do as mdtaylor said," as a preventitive measure" always use a quality 60 % poly quat algeacide, not the stuff at 10 % stuff WallyWorld, shock 1 time a week at the rate of 1 lb sanatizer per 10,000 gals, unless you have heavy usage or a lot of rain, then you may need to shock again. Filter at least 10 hrs continuoius and if you have a sand filter or de , after a fresh back wash look at you pres. guage and back wash at 10 psi over the startup press.
 
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Old 08-01-06, 12:07 PM
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wow.......thank you both for the info.......and the scare!

you brought up something i've been wondering about. at wallyworld, they sell 2 different shocks. one is shock & swim, the other is super shock. i'm assuming one is stronger than the other?? which one should i be using, if either one. our pool is 25k gal, so three 16 oz packets? or are all the pool chemicals there too wimpy?

i'm afraid to even ask about the 2 or 3 blackish botches/stains we have on the bottom........black algae???
 
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Old 08-01-06, 02:52 PM
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You shouldn't be buying any pool chemicals from Wally World...

You will only be sorry.


Ooo...I hope this doesn't get censored. What I mean is, W-M buys chemicals not at volume discounts, but at quality discounts. They are not near as good as what you get at a pool supply.
 
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Old 08-01-06, 02:58 PM
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no not all, what you need to look at is the type of chl. that is on the package. the weakest is a calcium hypochlorite( avg. shock) which is a unstabilized chlorine and it works provided you use the correct amounts. the other is most likly a di-chlor ( a lil stronger) which is mostly a stabilized chlorine ( the same type chlorine as the tabs or stiks you use) and sometimes a overkill unless you are fighting a prolbem. the the strongest is a tri-chlor which is also a stabilized chlorine,(this is the highend stiks or tabs and it too is available in a granular). the prolbem when using di and tri chlor is the stabilizer in them they tend to raise the stabilizer levels when used over and over cause the chlorine to lose it effectiveness . that is why i recommend a basic shock of calicum hypochlorite at the rate of 1 lb per 10,000 gals. in your case if you have 25k then 3 lbs should be sufficent. how do you chl. levels look? are the constantly low? do you use a chlorinator or place tabs or stiks in the skimmer? if you use the skimmer method i would place 3 tabs/ stiks there and what my chl. levels if they are still low add 1 more. then keep adding a tab/stik as need to maintain the same amount in the skimmer, ( 1 every few of days or as needed ) .
the stains you refer to may be black algea or possiblely a stain from a leaf or a stick. use your brush to scrub the area, if it brushes away and comes back then it may be black algea.

if you follow the 4 step maintence, sanitizer , algeacide and shock and filtration , pool maintence is not that bad, filtration is probably one of the main prevenetive measures you can do, if you ever have a prolbem always go to a 24/7 filtration schedule .
out of the pools i service i have at least half of them setup on a 10 -12 hr timer , they come on at 9am and run till 7-9pm unless they are being used and i express to my clients how important it is to run that filter any time that pool is in use. the other half run on a 24/7 schedule.
 
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Old 08-01-06, 02:58 PM
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really?? i mean, really & truly? cuz that's what the people at the pool place said, too, but you just never know if they're just telling you that so you'll buy from them, you know? i mean, some of their stuff is FOUR TIMES as expensive, for heaven's sake!!!
 
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Old 08-01-06, 03:14 PM
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we run our pump on filter 24/7.

we have a chlorinator thing that we keep full of the pucks and set on 5.

and we keep 1 or 2 pucks in the skimmer basket for good measure (?). our pool gets used almost daily, so i guess that's "heavy use"?

we did have a problem with the stabilizer getting too high & had to do the drain it a foot / fill it / drain it / fill it routine to get the stabilizer down.

the dark stain doesn't brush off. how can we know for sure it's NOT black algae? doesn't that stuff eat through the pool or something?
 
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Old 08-01-06, 03:22 PM
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yes that is true, the comp. i worked for sold BIOguard Prods. probably the best on the market as far as quality. they also have a topnotch tech department, at the pool supplies disposal. some things can be outsourced , but you need to look at the chem make up on the packaging , that is where you can find what makes the product more expensive.
you may find it hard to find a 60 % polyquat algeacide at Wally world, it is very concentrated so you only used a couple of ozs a week.

Shock is like i refered to earlier look for a calcium hypochlorite ( i think it is around 60+/- % active )

Sanitizer : stiks or tabs

you may want to adjust the chlorinator is the levels are that low that you need a xtra tab in the skimmer.

if the stain won't brush off the it is most likly a stain, you can get a pool scrub/ stain remover that is xtra thick and will stick to the brush, if that don't do it then the next step is to use a tab over the spot( WARNING THIS MAY BLEACH OUT THAT SPOT if it is vinyl lined)
 
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Old 08-01-06, 03:37 PM
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5 is as high as the chlorinator will go. seems like the chlorine level would get low pretty quickly & we're super paranoid about letting anything get a window of opportunity to start growing! the reading we get on the little test tab is always a nice purple color - somewhere around 3 or 5, less than 10. so i figure we're doing okay with that.

is "sanitizer" the same as chlorine??? all these terms are driving me nuts.

gunite, not vinyl. since i already have tabs, can i just try that first, instead of buying the stain remover? just lay the tab right on the stain & let it sit there a while?
 
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Old 08-01-06, 03:45 PM
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sorry for the tech terms, yes, in your case sanitizer is chlorine. if it is a gunite then that is a viable option. place a tab over the spot in question . turn the pool off overnight and allow the water to sit idle and start it up in the morning the stain should be gone if not repeat it again, do this only overnight.

may i ask what type of filter you are using?

also what type of test kit do you have? is it the dropper/ reagent type or the dpd tabs?
 
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Old 08-01-06, 03:48 PM
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sand filter.

the little test strips. maybe 4 things on it.

every now & then we take in a water sample to the pool place.
 
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Old 08-01-06, 03:55 PM
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those strips are not very realiable. i would recommend you invest into a kit the has the DPD 1 and 2 tabs . this is the same test that the pool supplies should be using. if thay aren't find you another pool supply.
since you have a gunite pool be sure to watch the Calcium Hardness levels if they get low then your pool may begin to pitt or get rough like sandpaper.

after you back wash you filter, get a startup reading on your press. guage then backwash at 10 psi over the startup pressure , not before, this ensures that the filter is performing at peak effiency.
 
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Old 08-02-06, 11:13 AM
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the pool place uses a dropper thing & a bunch of chemistry lab glass tubes & stuff.

are you saying i need to get a different tab-type test kit with more things on it?

the previous owner's already failed to monitor the calcium hardness - our pool is so rough it makes kids' feet bleed unless they wear swim shoes.
 
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Old 08-02-06, 03:27 PM
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well, to do a accurate test for chl. the dropper/reagent is OK but i prefer to use the DPD 1 and DPD2 tabs. , they provide the total and free chlorine levels. this is more accurate. the dropper reagent has a short shelf life.
as far as getting a major test kit that is your option, however with a gunite pool it may not be a bad idea, that way you can monitor the Cal. hard levels. i don't know if your pool place charges for water analyisis if you don't make a min. purchase, some do. if so i would definitly invest in a 6/7 way, which consist of tot. chl. , free chl., ph, stabilizer, tot. alk, and cal. hardness, you can learn alot more about what your pools doing and if there seem to be something out of normal then grab a sample and visit the local pool supply, but with a multi level kit you can get things under control before they get out of hand.

i saw your post earlier about painting , this is a option that can be DIY but a quality pool paint is very expensive and will require recoats every 5-7 years(best case) and it should help with the roughness. just remember if you decide to paint do the extra prep work involved and you will be a lot happier.
 
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Old 08-03-06, 07:33 AM
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thanks for all your info!

our pool does not charge for water samples, so we do take advantage of that regularly when the readings are anything but normal & in range.

they told me a while back, that to replaster the pool (just regular plaster, not PebbleTec or DiamondBright or anything upper end), it would be around $12,000. someone here said they'd just had it done for less than $4k. so a couple days ago, i asked them again about it, and she confirmed that, yes, here in my town, it runs anywhere from $6-12k, and there's only one guy who's good. and to paint, it's around $160 gal for the epoxy type stuff, plus $115 gal for the primer. but that's still WAY less than $12k!!!! i don't know what we'll end up doing. this is our first summer at this new house. the to-do list is long........ for now, $3 water shoes for the kids has been the best solution!!
 
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Old 08-03-06, 11:30 AM
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Annette, you don't need to use algaecide...another pool store gimmick to trick people. You basically need 5 or 6 items for a pool;
1. Chlorine to shock...I use ultra unscented bleach 6%. It doesn't raise CYA, which is why I say use pucks until CYA level reaches ~25-30ppm THEN STOP!! Tri/dichlor is fine, but using calcium hypochlorite (cal-hypo) can cause cloudiness and you don't need calcium for a liner pool.
2. Stabilizer...from the pucks up or in granular form (my preference).
3. Baking soda...raises Total alkalinity.
4. Borax....raises pH, but not alkalinity.
5. Soda ash or washing soda...will raise pH and TA, use carefully
6. Muratic acid...lowers pH (highly caustic and dangerous, be careful and use only small amounts/circulate/retest) Have to get this at HD/Lowes or other hardware store.

Bleach will also raise pH, since it has a pH of ~12. I use mur. acid to lower pH after shocking.
Be careful not to raise the TA too high, it's a real PITA to lower!

Don't get "pooled" at the poolstore, the grocery store list items above are more pure than
the pool store equivalent...as they are food grade. One more thing, get a decent drop-based test kit and do your own water testing. Lots of folks get stuck buying overpriced poolstore product because they rely on them to do the testing and take their advice. You can use their testing to confirm your test numbers, then buy chems at the grocery.
You'll be amazed at how cheap running your pool will be.
 
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Old 08-03-06, 11:47 AM
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thanks for the info, but see why i get so confused!!! no one can agree on how to properly take care of a pool! even on this board, some have said shock & algacide weekly to PREVENT problems, others (including my pool store) say don't do either until you NEED to - don't waste/spend your money until you have to.

i asked our pool store about what i thought was mustard algae, and she said it was DEAD algae that's still dropping to the bottom because of the Drop-Out we used during our pool opening. so she didn't sell me anything. i think that should say something about her integrity. but what do i know!!!
 
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Old 08-03-06, 12:32 PM
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You don't have to "shock" the pool unless you have a germ problem, that is, a green or smelly pool. Depending on your cya level, there are guidelines to follow regarding chlorine:


Stabilizer . . . . . . Min. FC . . . . Max FC . . . 'Shock' FC
=> 0 ppm . . . . . . . 1 ppm . . . . . 3 ppm . . . . 10 ppm
=> 10 - 20 ppm . . . . 2 ppm . . . . . 5 ppm . . . . 12 ppm
=> 30 - 50 ppm . . . . 3 ppm . . . . . 6 ppm . . . . 15 ppm
=> 60 - 90 ppm . . . . 5 ppm . . . . . 10 ppm . . .. 20 ppm
=> 100 - 200 ppm . . . 8 ppm . . . . . 15 ppm . . .. 25 ppm

This is from another site, and is a great reference tool for pool owner. Try to keep chlorine at Min. levels by keeping CYA (stabilizer) in check....you'll use less chlorine and save $$. That's a good pool store girl, not trying to sell you something you don't need...
hang onto her.
 
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Old 08-03-06, 02:34 PM
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i completely disagree with the above post. i stand by my recomendations due to experience(15 +yrs. in and around the pool business ) and have many happy clients.
yes, you can use the alternate. however, if a basic schedule is followed the overall cost is very near the same. however with what i proposed a basic 3 step system which is very simple to follow will yield more pool time and less headscratching. i will venture to say that a basic 3 step schedule will produce less PROLBEMS in a pool season than using the alternate.
I AM NOT SELLING ANYTHING ,AND HERE I GIVE MY KNOWLEDGE FREELY.
my clients pay me extremely well for my KNOWLEDGE, because i know: how to , when to, how much, to get the job done. in the long term picture, as long as the client is happy, i can be satisified that i did what was right.

I remember that when i worked in a pool store we had almost 600+ customers the first year, they all became a friend as well as a client, they were dooped by the competetion, all they asked us was to be truthful and realiable .
the company i worked for was a family owned buisness that had and still is in buisness for the past 35 years, and i rely on thier help with anything i can't handle.

Quote
"You don't have to "shock" the pool unless you have a germ problem, that is, a green or smelly pool. Depending on your cya level, there are guidelines to follow regarding chlorine:
Stabilizer . . . . . . Min. FC . . . . Max FC . . . 'Shock' FC
=> 0 ppm . . . . . . . 1 ppm . . . . . 3 ppm . . . . 10 ppm
=> 10 - 20 ppm . . . . 2 ppm . . . . . 5 ppm . . . . 12 ppm
=> 30 - 50 ppm . . . . 3 ppm . . . . . 6 ppm . . . . 15 ppm
=> 60 - 90 ppm . . . . 5 ppm . . . . . 10 ppm . . .. 20 ppm
=> 100 - 200 ppm . . . 8 ppm . . . . . 15 ppm . . .. 25 ppm

This is from another site, and is a great reference tool for pool owner. Try to keep chlorine at Min. levels by keeping CYA (stabilizer) in check....you'll use less chlorine and save $$. That's a good pool store girl, not trying to sell you something you don't need...
hang onto her."
Unquote




i wish i had more people treating thier pools like that, i could quite my fulltime job driving and START UP a Fulltime Pool cleaning/ service business , i would make a fortune . anytime anyone tells you to keep the Chlorine levels at the minimum, and to shock only when the waters is green or smelly, then i say they need to put the top back on the bleach bottle, and step away from the edge of the water.

I don't want to OFFEND any pool owner with what i'm about to say but " POOL owners want to go the cheapest route, until there is a prolbem, then they fork out several hundered dollars of thier money to correct a prolbem , which could have been averted if they would use the SIMPLE basic 3 step system. they all want somthing simple and what i propose is simple and to the point, it only requires a minumim of a couple of hrs a week, this include general maintence, testing and adding chems. if i hurt anyones feelings i am very sorry.



Annette , pool paint is not that expensive unless that is what a contractor has quoted( paint and labor to apply). the last pool i know that was painted was several years ago, and they used Ramuc Pool paint, very high quality and reasonable some where around $65- 80 a gallon for a Epoxy paint.

sorry for the long post .
 
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Old 08-04-06, 10:08 AM
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VC...clue us in on your 3 step system. I'm interested in anything to make pool maint. easier, but not sure that I can. I work less than 1 hr a week on mine and the waters' clean and clear. And what exactly don't you agree with regarding my post?
 
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Old 08-04-06, 06:59 PM
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what i disagree is Quote"You don't have to "shock" the pool unless you have a germ problem, that is, a green or smelly pool. Depending on your cya level, there are guidelines to follow regarding chlorine:


Stabilizer . . . . . . Min. FC . . . . Max FC . . . 'Shock' FC
=> 0 ppm . . . . . . . 1 ppm . . . . . 3 ppm . . . . 10 ppm
=> 10 - 20 ppm . . . . 2 ppm . . . . . 5 ppm . . . . 12 ppm
=> 30 - 50 ppm . . . . 3 ppm . . . . . 6 ppm . . . . 15 ppm
=> 60 - 90 ppm . . . . 5 ppm . . . . . 10 ppm . . .. 20 ppm
=> 100 - 200 ppm . . . 8 ppm . . . . . 15 ppm . . .. 25 ppm" unquote

read on :



i had a client doing the lquid chl. reigiment and 1 summer he constantly had prolbems with mustard algea , i made 1 trip and showed him the 3/4 step method, it took 15 mins to test and shock, apply algecide . he is still doing my schedule and no prolbems, thats been 3 years. so he's got 15 mins, 1 day and 5 mins every other day of the week, not to mention he has a Polaris pool cleaner so for 25 mins a week, his maintence is done.

3/4 step as follows:

1 sanitizer : stik or tab in skimmer or chlorinator ( skimmer apps : 1 stik or tab per 10,000 as needed )

2 shock : 1 a week at a rate of 1lb per 10,000 gal. unless there is a heavy rain or high usage (basic test every other day )

3 algecide 1 every 2 weeks :60% polyquat at a rate 3-4 ozs per 10,000 gals of used as a preventitive measure because chlorine is not enough some times , this will allow a time buffer.

4 filtration: a minimum of 10 hrs of filtration

any time chlorine is used in a pool it is recommended to test every day however i have my clients test 3 times a week with thier test kits or every other day.
if you spend 1 hr adding chems then you definitly need a routine that will simplify maintence.
I agree that balancing chems can be outsourced ( see above post from several days ago) but i draw the line at telling a NEW POOL OWNER that lquid bleach is the great todo sanitizer, if i were a seasoned pool owner i may consider it , i checked out the pool solutions site, and if you read closely they agree on several things i have stated.
all this talk about using a stablilzed chl. raising the stabilizer levels , does have some validity, yes it can , but as long as there is evaporation and pool users in and out , the addition of fresh water should keep stabilizer in check. i have only had 2 pools that suffered from high stabilizer, and all we did was CYCLE in fresh water in every time we did a back wash, after the sight glass was clear, we would switch over to waste and remove more water.
the use of granular calcium hypochlorite
( which is unstablized )at the specified rate is simplier to use than pouring several gallons of bleach in the pool, and hoping that there is going to be enough to do the job. then you are at the point that there is a potential for algea to form and spread.
regarding the cloudyness after a shock , this is realy blown out of proportion, after a few hrs of filtration the haze is gone, anytime chems are added there needs to be at leats 10 hrs of circluation to ensure that the chems are evenly dispersed thoughout the pool.

i am glad that you are experiencing good results with your regiment, however for the time i have invested in this field, i still feel that anyone can benifit from my regiment, due to its simplicity.
 
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Old 08-06-06, 11:58 AM
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Obviously your client didn't use enough bleach to properly sanitize the water...very typical since folks tend to neglect the pool many times, especially switching from a chlorinator, floater or skimmer puck user. Chlorine is the same, just in different forms, and using any product with CYA (stabilizer) continually will inevitably cause overstabilization problems. If you don't mind draining half or more of the water every summer (or more often), go ahead...it's your preference. I've used bleach after reaching 30ppm stabilizer w/floater & pucks and I've never had a mustard or serious algae problem.
The shocking regimen you do every week is just an overkill to charge more $$. Totally unnecessary in a well maintained, balanced pool. Using algaecide (polyquat product ONLY) weekly prolly isn't a bad preventative maint. measure, but I've never used it.

Persistence and knowledge is the key, and of course, about half the pool owners are stupid and lazy, which opens the door for poolboys. Good thing for you
it's not a perfect world.
 
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Old 08-06-06, 03:10 PM
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well i ain't no pool boy as you imply, the prolbem for a professional ( term loosly applied) is that there is a liability, that you as a home owner assume when you have a pool, if you do something that makes the water UNSANITARY then thats your prolbem to deal with, the pool care professionals( term applied loosly) can not and will not subject themselves to that, due to the fact of liability.
just so you know that there is a thing called Dept. of health and they have people that go around and check commerical pools and spas, i service 1 commeriacl pool and spa, and i have never had a deficent report in 3 years under my care and supervision, and i can say that a commerical spa is the biggest pain in my butt that i know of.

since you say my client didn't use the correct amount of bleach, i'm sure that was true, but how can a pool suppy help someone that they know nothing about(lquid bleach ) . it only takes 1 time to get a prolbem for the savings that was gained to be threw to the wind .
please tell me how many poolstores do you know that service pool owners that use bleach? around here none, and i'm glad because i have enough on my plate as it is.
i only help a few(8) homeowners to maintain there pools and 1 comm. pool and spa.
this is a hobby for me, but i turn down enough referrals that i could justify opening a full time business.

We have argued enough now so let me be the 1st to say " YOU WIN !!!! You have the most INGENOIUS way to maintain a pool and mine is well, complicated , outdated, and useless."

enough said.
 
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Old 08-07-06, 07:03 AM
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Most of the "problems" that pool services address is 1 thing....
not enough chlorine>>algae blooms, or too much stabilizer>> algae blooms. Both of these issues account for prolly 95% of pool issues. The other 5 seems to be water supply issues (using
well water w/metals in it), or other variables such as ph and TA. You can still swim in a pool with high pH and high or low TA. Calcium? Not even necessary if you have a liner pool. Most problems can be alleviated w/knowledge and daily routines.

IF you can smell chlorine, add chlorine!
 
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