Go Back  DoItYourself.com Community Forums > Garden and Outdoor Center > Pools, Spas and Hot Tubs
Reload this Page >

Can't get this chemical thing right!!! Help!

Can't get this chemical thing right!!! Help!


Old 06-15-07, 08:16 AM
tuperdoo's Avatar
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Podunk Nowhere
Posts: 4
Exclamation Can't get this chemical thing right!!! Help!

We recently purchased a home that came with a 25 foot round above ground pool. It has a Polaris system installed in it. I have read all the instructions on it, and I think I have the general maintenance of that and the filter down. But I cannot get the chemicals right to save my life! It turns green if I do not add at least two shock packages every day. I have tried to add the algecide at the prescribed rate, but it doesn't seem to make a difference. The pH of the water is also always low, even if it is blue and clear. I do have a chlorine feeder that I just figured out how to work yesterday and added the chlorine to it, but this morning it still looks like a swamp. It rained a few days ago and it has been a mess ever since. I am not sure I can keep dumping this much money into this thing (I literally have been putting at least $10 a day into it) I am positive that I am not doing something right!

ANY help/suggestions are greatly appreciated! Thank you in advance!
Sponsored Links
Old 06-15-07, 12:56 PM
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2
Did you take a water sample to your local pool store and let them test the water? They should be able to advise you on what to do and what to add or not add, to bring the water up to standard. If you don't get the results you want, try another store. Sooner or later you will find somebody who knows what they are talking about. Try to find a local who knows what kind of water elements they are dealing with. Good Luck
Old 06-16-07, 05:02 AM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 929
Shock lasts for about 2 hours. You need to get stabilized chlorine in that thing. If you cannot keep the chlorine at 2.0+ then you will never get anywhere.

Now that you have figured out your chlorinator it will get easier. But, you need to get some hands on instruction. See if the pool supplier has a service department that will send someone over and give you an hours instruction on how to manage a pool.
Old 06-16-07, 03:10 PM
VC-Racing's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: South Fork of The Edisto River, SC
Posts: 219
when you say polaris are you refering to a pool cleaner or the chlorine generator. if its the pool cleaner then turn your chlorinator to half way , shock the pool with 2 lbs of granular by braodcasting over the pool. NEVER ADD GRANULAR CHLORINE TO THE SKIMMER IF YOU USE A CHLORINATOR, VERY BAD THINGS CAN HAPPEN. now run the filter 24/7 until the green clears. you need to run the filter at least 8 hrs a day once the pool has cleared up. shock 2lbs evry week add 4-6 ozs 60% algicide evry 2 weeks and take chlorine samples every day and adjust the chlorinator +/- until you maintain at least a 2.0 ch.level. and vacumm with your manual vac until cleared. if there are huge amounts of dead algea you may need a flocculent to settle the debris and then vacumm to WASTE.
Old 06-17-07, 01:51 AM
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 33
THE most important factor in pool chemicals is the ph, if that isn't right the CL won't work right. Keeping the ph around 7.4-7.6 is optimal. If it's to low you'll burn through CL too fast, if it's too high it won't work effectively. To raise the ph add soda ash, it should be available at your local pool supply store, they might call it ph increaser or something. The chemical you're using to shock it will have an effect as well, Calcium Hypochlorite will increase the ph, some others will decrease it. You do need to use a stabilized tablet in your chlorinator, most slow dissovle tablets are Tri-Chlor which is stabilized. Algaecide is basically a wetting agent that makes the Chlorine more effective, it doesn't actually kill the algae itself, I never use it myself, I just keep my free CL level between 3-4 ppm. You'll need to shock it by adding 10 lbs. of CL for every million pounds of water. 120,000 gallons of water is approximately 1,000,000 lbs. You'll need to check the available CL on the label of your shock chemical, they aren't 100% CL, most are 40%-60%. So say your pool is 12,000 gallons and your shock is 50% CL then you'll need to add 2 lbs of shock after you get the ph adjusted. The Alkalinity of the water also has a big impact on the ph, too high and it will resist changes, too ow and it won't stabilize. I've found that a Total Alkalinity of about 130 ppm is the best, but you should be fine anywhere from 80- 200. My guess would be that your TA is low, since you said the ph is always low, the soda ash will increase it as well as increase the ph. Once you get those stabilized adjust your CL feeder to keep the residual between 3-4 ppm and you should be fine, you'll have to vacuum the pool to get the debris and sediment from shocking out and clean it and the filter on a regular basis but your water should stay clear. Let the pump run for 24 hrs before you vacuum and clean the filter and make sure you run it at least long enough for a complete turnover every time you add any chemicals to make sure that they get distributed evenly. Hope this helps and doesn't confuse you, balancing pool chemistry really isn't that hard to do, you just have to learn all the different factors involved.
Old 06-20-07, 11:00 AM
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Texas
Posts: 239
The easiest thing to do is add plain unscented ultra bleach-and alittle cheaper too. You can get the bigger jugs at any grocery store and just pour it in w/pump running. The ultra bleach is 6% chlorine, so one gallon will raise cl level 6ppm in a 10,000 gallon pool. One of the bigger jugs is about a gallon and a third, so it'll raise it around 7-8. Good thing is that this will increase the pH also. You have a chlorinator, so you've prolly inherited a high CYA, which will make the chlorine overstabilized (ie. ineffective). Get test kit and check cya level. If high, you may need to drain off some water--you want it around 30-50 range, but alittle higher may be fine. Granular 'shock' takes too long to dissolve and the calcium in it will make water cloudy, so use bleach. Do what zeppo said about the pH and total alk, but using the stabilized cl pucks in the feeder will eventually raise cya too high....that's when to start using bleach.
Old 06-20-07, 04:29 PM
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 33
Bleach will work as a sanitizer, the active ingredient in household bleach is sodium hypochlorite, like ingeous said it's normally 6%, but sodium hypochlorite is not 100% available CL, I can't remember the percentage off the top of my head, you'd have to look that up. Bleach isn't stabilized so UV light will will break down the CL, That's what the cyranic acid is for, to protect against UV. Ingeous is right though it does reduce the effectiveness of the CL and the only way to reduce the level is to drain the pool down and refill it to dilute the CYA levels. You should do that anytime they approach 100 ppm. A good test kit is a must if you want to maintain the chemistry yourself. I personally like Taylor's titration kits, titration is much more accurate than comparing a color change to a chart. You need to be able to test for free CL, combined CL, TA, CYA, ph etc. The one I use cost about $125 and will do all of those plus calcium hardness and some others. test strips just aren't accurate enough to make decisions about how much of each chemical to add.
Old 06-21-07, 07:27 AM
todrut's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 1,212
tuperdoo, what you need to do is establish if there is any stabilizer in your pool. If pool was filled when you bought the house there is no way to know unless take a water sample to store. If you emptied and filled the pool and did not add stabilizer, then there is none in there. It is very important to have it, it is what keeps the sun from disipitating you chlorine and believe me sun will eat chlorine. A chemical test kit is a must have for a pool owner, if you have one test the ph and ta (total alkalinity) and of course chlorine. So, go to your local wal-mart, get stabilizer if needed, follow directions on bottle. Pick up 5lbs of shock, the 1lbs packs. If ph tested high or low pick up appropriate chemical to raise or lower. If you don't have chlorine tabs or stick get some. When you get home FIRST thing you want to do is clean you filter cartridge(I'm assuming here your filter is cartridge). Put your cartridges in a bucket of hot water with a tablespoon of cascade, let soak. Then rinse thouroughly. Next you'll want to adjust your ph, then add you stabilizer. Shock pool with 2 bags shock, make sure chlorinator is full. After 24 hours pool should look pretty good, in 48 hours add 1 bag of shock and pool should be looking great. Make sure to keep filter clean every other week or weekly if needed.

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes