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Low Ph Levels


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#1 lumpy2bs

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Posted 29 April 2006 - 06:18 AM

I have very low ph levels in my in ground pool. I opened it last week and since have added almost 50lbs. of ph increaser but the level still remains well below normal. Presently, I have an estimated ph of 6.8 or possibly lower ( doesn't show a reading below 6.8). Is this normal to add that much ph increaser or do I have another problem? Also, the plastic "spa step" area at the shallow end of the pool has turned yellow even though my water is crystal clear. Any ideas?

#2 Sunbuilt Pools

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Posted 29 April 2006 - 07:00 AM

In all likelihood your alkalinity not pH is low. Have your water tested or buy a test kit that checks for alkalinity. This will cause discoloration of the water, can cause wrinkling in a liner and the pH will not change. You will have to add Alkalinity up if it is low.

#3 poollady

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Posted 29 April 2006 - 11:53 AM

QUOTE(Sunbuilt Pools @ Apr 29 2006, 07:00 AM) View Post

In all likelihood your alkalinity not pH is low. Have your water tested or buy a test kit that checks for alkalinity. This will cause discoloration of the water, can cause wrinkling in a liner and the pH will not change. You will have to add Alkalinity up if it is low.

I agree. You need to add alkalinity up as well as PH up. Alkalinity has a direct effect on PH. If the alkalinity is low, it will keep the PH low. Your pool is like swimming in acid right now.

#4 waterbear

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Posted 29 April 2006 - 02:54 PM

adding sodium carbonate (ph increaser) will increase both pH and alkalinity at the same time while sodium bicarbonate (alkalinity increaser) will have minimal impact on your pH while increasing your alkalinity. Basic chemisty here. If anyone wants a detailed explanation I will be happy to provide it.. You need to get your water tested to find out what is happening before you start dumping in chemicals! Are you using trichlor pucks for chlorinating? These are extremely acidic and can cause low pH.

Without a complete set of test resutlts for Free Chlorine, Total Chlorine, pH, Alkalinity, Hardness and stabilizer (and perhaps a Base Demand test) it is pretty hard to tell what is going on. Don't rely on test strips for these readings. They don't have the precision for what you need to diagnose right now. You need to have the water tested with a drop based test kit or a powder reagent test kit.
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#5 hottub.pool_boy

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 05:43 PM

Agreed.
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#6 Brulan1

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Posted 29 June 2006 - 12:05 PM

QUOTE(waterbear @ Apr 29 2006, 06:54 PM) View Post

adding sodium carbonate (ph increaser) will increase both pH and alkalinity at the same time while sodium bicarbonate (alkalinity increaser) will have minimal impact on your pH while increasing your alkalinity. Basic chemisty here. If anyone wants a detailed explanation I will be happy to provide it.. You need to get your water tested to find out what is happening before you start dumping in chemicals! Are you using trichlor pucks for chlorinating? These are extremely acidic and can cause low pH.

Without a complete set of test resutlts for Free Chlorine, Total Chlorine, pH, Alkalinity, Hardness and stabilizer (and perhaps a Base Demand test) it is pretty hard to tell what is going on. Don't rely on test strips for these readings. They don't have the precision for what you need to diagnose right now. You need to have the water tested with a drop based test kit or a powder reagent test kit.

If anything use Phenol Red for more of an acurate reading.

#7 waterbear

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Posted 29 June 2006 - 06:37 PM

QUOTE(Brulan1 @ Jun 29 2006, 04:05 PM) View Post

If anything use Phenol Red for more of an acurate reading.

You never cease to amaze me! Phenol Red is the indicator used in both test strips and in drop based kits. It will tell you the pH but nothing about TA. TA is tested by difererent indicators with a titraton test!
I really hope that you don't do any water testing for people!

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