View Full Version : pool green - chemical imbalance?

05-31-2006, 11:12 PM
someone please help! i am pulling my hair out here. i had an AG last year so learned a little and now bought a house with an IG, which i think is 12x36 so i figured roughly 10,000 gallons+. no idea what type of pool. filter is a cartridge filter.

when i moved in it was winter and previous homeowner said she just put a chlorine tablet in weekly to keep it clear looking til summer so i contd that til a few weeks ago and let it slip as i just kept forgetting with a busy schedule to buy some more. now the pool is green, clear green but solid green. i have ran pump, sprayed filter several times to clean, and put lots of chemicals in which i think have messed it up worse. i started last week with 2 bags shock and 3" tablets x 2 in skimmer basket x2 in floaters. no avail. so resorted to 3 gallons 6% bleach after reading on this forum. still no avail. filter running 24/7. FC continues to show 0. so i added more 3" tablets, added x2 more in floaters equalling 6 total. still FC of 0. pH was low so i added pH plus. 3 days later, still nothing happening.

today, i added 2 more bags shock, bought the premade chlorine floater from wal-mart. 6 hours later, nothing. here are my readings:
total hardness: 400
chlorine: 0 (i assumed this was free chlorine but container doesn't actually say that, it only says chlorine - HTH strips from Wal-Mart)
pH: less than lowest on scale of 6.4 so lower than 6.4
TA: 40 (slightly a little less as color wasn't totally matching 40)
CYA: i'd say about 20 as it looked between the 0 and 30-50 color.

after reading some posts about the 3" tablets being acidic, i took all of them out just before posting this. so what i have done today is the 2 lbs shock and have the premade chlorine floater punched out to 10,000 gallon marks. when putting in the shock, i got a frothy/foamy skim on top of water but that has cleared now about 6 hours later.

from what i gather after reading/researching here, i need to leave it alone to allow the pH to bring itself up. i have pump running which i have 4 jets over my steps so i think that will circulate/aerate well? then i also read to bring up the pH and alk before water will clear up so i plan to get some borax and baking soda tomorrow for that. any idea how much i may need? then i figured i would start with the bleach and someone had suggested to another poster 10 gallons? am i on the right track or making things worse?


05-31-2006, 11:35 PM
OK, I'll start:
1) stop using everything you are using.

2) You MUST get your pH up above 6.9 immediately--use ordinary 20 Mule team Borax to do that. You'll probably need 3 or 4 boxes--just a guess.

3) You need lots and lots of bleach. I am ball-parking it but I think you'll need 6 to 10 gallons at a time.

4) Patience, persistance.

05-31-2006, 11:53 PM
thank you so much CarlD! i left the floater in there so i should pull it out as well huh? i kinda figured i had it in shock with all the mix and too much chemicals and it kinda locked up my chlorine from doing anything so i figured my best bet was to stop it all and start over with bleach and borax. will get right on those tomorrow and update.

06-01-2006, 06:56 PM
Take the floater out and just hit it with bleach as Carl suggested.

06-01-2006, 07:55 PM
okay, the floater is out. i put in 4 jugs of the 1 gallon 46 oz from wal-mart. i also put in on 4 lb box of the borax to start with and have the pump/filter running. i have sprayed the filter clean about every hour. now i tested the water 2 hours later and here are my results:
TH: 200
FC: 5
pH: 7.8
TA: 80
CYA: 30-50

do i just wait and be patient to see if this clears it up or does the FC need to be higher to burn out the algae?

06-01-2006, 09:59 PM
Take your chlorine up to about 12 and try and hold it there. Test several times a day, the more often the better, and each time add enough bleach to shock it back up there.

06-02-2006, 09:44 AM
YEAH!!!!! What a difference the pool looks this morning. the green is now gone but still cloudy so it is going good. here are my levels this morning:
TH: 400
FC: 10+ (off the scale)
pH: 7.2
TA: 40
CYA: 0

so FC is holding good and held overnight. however, the pH came down somewhat and the TA and no CYA. i just added a 4 lb box of soda to bring up the TA. What do i do about the CYA levels and should i add some more borax to bring back up the pH?

i think i'll jump in and vaccum now; didn't want to go into that yucky green, lol.

06-02-2006, 09:56 AM
Check the chlorine often. With no CYA, the sun will eat it up.

06-02-2006, 10:07 AM
It's possible that the CYA was bleached out on your test strips. First step is to get a real test kit - FAS DPD if possible otherwise DPD test - either Ben's or a Taylor test kit.

06-02-2006, 10:15 AM
Road runner,

Sounds like you're on the right track but you have some serious testing issues or some serious typos.

Your hardness has doubled since yesterday...nope

Your alkalinity has halved...possible, but I'd test again.

Your CYA has gone from 30-50 to ZERO in 12 hours....nope

review either your testing methods or your keystrokes....:)

06-02-2006, 11:08 AM
Duraleigh is on the money.

But it's always good to see our methods working-which they always do (unless there's something else at play).

06-02-2006, 12:19 PM
okay, i did let my child test so here are my levels again a few hours later....

will get the other kit ordered.

TH: 400
FC: 10+
pH: 7.5-7.8
TA: 120
CYA: it is kinda in between the 0 and the 30-50 so i would say midway?

06-02-2006, 12:38 PM
Test strips?

Then I have little confidence in them. Sorry. Drop testing works better. Drop testing: You add drops of stuff into a water sample.