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About PaulR

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    Hot Tub Aficionado

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    Cupertino, CA
  1. The pool calculator says 4lb dichlor in 8600 gallons gets you 28ppm CYA, close enough to 30. But it's true I'm used to thinking about a covered pool, an uncovered pool would benefit from being up more towards 40.
  2. Looks right to me. You'll already have the R-0870 powder, so the 0871 and 0003 will take care of the FC/CC tests. Sometimes with small pools like this, the spa dichlor/bleach method works out pretty well. If I got the numbers right, you'd use dichlor until you've run through about 4 lb, then switch to bleach. Happy pooling!
  3. Wow, that would have boosted FC up into the 40-50 range.... should burn out anything! Has the pool settled down now? How's your overnight loss?
  4. Do an overnight loss test. That is, test chlorine sometime after sunset, then again in the morning before the sun hits the pool. If you lose more than 0.5ppm FC overnight, then yes you have something going on in the water and you just need to keep dosing it until the problem goes away. Sunlight burns off some amount of chlorine every day, doing the overnight test will factor that out. --paulr
  5. According to poolcalculator.com, in a 20K gallon pool, each 8-oz tab will add about FC 2.7 and CYA 1.7. Just to give you some idea. Of course the chlorine gets used up over time, but the CYA really doesn't. (I bought a bucket of Leslie's tabs when I moved in where I am now; I didn't realize it would be a lifetime supply!) --paulr
  6. Yes, the floater is for tablets not granules. You'll need to fuss with it a bit to find how far open to leave it, in order to keep a reasonably steady bromine level. I use the granules only for startup after a refill. Use plain unscented regular bleach to shock. Works like a charm. Stay away from scented, "splashless," etc. you want the really basic plain stuff. You could also use the dichlor, just to use it up. If PH stays in range without constant doses of acid or soda, then your TA is in the right place. --paulr
  7. You probably have a lot of muck in there, and you can probably get at least some of it out with the net. Whatever comes out in the net, is that much that doesn't have to go through the filter. You'll need a lot of chlorine, applied daily until it's all cleared up. I'd use liquid chlorine (pool store) aka plain unscented bleach (grocrey/big box store). the only difference is the pool-store stuff is 10-12% while the grocery stuff is 5-6%. Don't get "splashless" or scented or anything else, plain regular/ultra unscented. If you are not in a hard-water area, you could also get away with using
  8. If you're going with bromine and you haven't found it already, Waterbear wrote a great summary here: http://www.poolspaforum.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=26324 In a bromine tub, the chlorine and CYA results aren't that meaningful. CYA doesn't affect bromine, IIRC. The dealer's initial chlorine dose is basically gone at this point. Bromine is obviously low, you want to keep it in the 2-6 range. I find it's much easier with the bromine tablets in a floater, in my tub. But also my tub gets a lot less use than yours. Experiment, find what works for you. TA seems high, but if PH is stable
  9. If it wasn't vinyl, I'd say drop a trichlor tablet on the stains. But I'm not sure how safe that would be for vinyl. Maybe just bring your chlorine up to shock levels for a couple of days, organic stains should fade with a high chlorine regimen. --paulr
  10. I have two girls of my own, so I sympathize. Swimming lessons for everyone, asap. But you knew that. I don't think lowering the water level is really practical. 10-11 feet deep is unusual for a residential pool; the previous owner must have been a serious diver. 6-8 feet is more usual. You could raise the bottom of the diving area with concrete (and redo the plumbing for the drain) but that is a very permanent change to the pool layout. When you say bricks, I assume you meant loose bricks with the idea of removing them later? Don't do that, there will be no good water flow in where the
  11. The main benefit of any kind of "solar" cover is reducing evaporation. The ads and salespeople will try to persuade there's a "focusing effect" on the sun's ray's; that part is all snake oil. Evaporation is a (maybe the) major source of your heat loss. With the rings, if you cram them on, you get maybe 75% of the surface covered. So they do help. By comparison, with a regular solar cover you should be able to get 100% coverage, or darn close to it. This won't eliminate evaporation completely, but it comes real close. It has been a while since I had my cover off for long enough to notice
  12. With dichlor-then-bleach you do still need an occasional dichlor dose. CYA seems to get "eaten" very slowly by the chlorine, I think the rule of thumb is 5ppm per month. I've not heard about borates going away over time. Technically, if you lose water over the side (too-vigorous splashing, or just people getting out all drippy wet) that would have a net effect of losing some borate, but in most practical situations it wouldn't be enough to bother about. (Say you started at 30ppm borates in your 300 gallon tub. If you heaved 30 gallons over the side, then topped up, you'd be down to 27ppm
  13. Well, my understanding is that the point of the bleach is to oxidize the bromine, and ozone is also an oxidizer, so I would expect the ozonator to make it unnecessary to use bleach (or at least, you'd use a lot less bleach). But I'm far from a chemistry guru. --paulr
  14. I'm in the Bay Area, and my cover (which is on pretty much all the time) really helps cut down on evaporation; I go at least 3x longer between refills. And, the water stays warmer later into the fall. I pretty much never run my heater any more. I suppose I could in the winter, if we were interested in swimming then, but we usually stick to just the hot tub. Some places will claim the cover "focuses" the sunlight and heats the water more efficiently; that's nonsense. The amount of sunlight reaching the pool surface doesn't change with a cover. If anything it's less, because some of it get
  15. I'd suggest weekly. I started using bromine a couple months ago and I've seen this TA depletion problem. --paulr
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