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Low Alkalinity AND High pH - What am I missing?


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I'm a first time hot tub owner now about 9 months in, so I've done a few water changes and I'm having a consistent problem trying to balance my water.  I'm filling my hot tub with well water that has gone through a charcoal filter and had Leisure Time Metal Gone added during filling.  After bringing the water up to temperature I will typically have a pH of approximately 6.5 and Alkalinity of 15.  So I start by increasing the Alkalinity to at least 100ppm, but after adding Leisure Time Alkalinity Increaser I always end up with a pH that is much higher than 7.6 even with Alkalinity just above 100 ppm.  This last refill I ended up with ph of 7.9 and Alkalinity of 135.  If I use Leisure Time Spa Down to bring down the pH, so too drops the Alkalinity and around and round we go.

After a lot of Googling I've found plenty of advice on how to decouple pH and Alkalinity when the situation is the opposite; low pH and high Alkalinity.  But I haven't been able to find any helpful information about how to decouple pH and Alkalinity when the pH is high and Alkalinity low.  My hot tub dealer just says to use the hot tub until the pH comes down through use, but it takes a LONG time for the pH to come down from 7.9 and I'm concerned about damage to the hot tub and/or effective sanitation.

Is there a trick I'm missing?

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  • 3 weeks later...

I think your TA is too high.  You should bring it down closer to 80 and see if that gets your ph in range. If ph is low, try running your jets with air for a while to raise the ph into range. I keep my TA in the 65 to 70 range to manage ph upward creep due to the use of bleach.

If you are using test strips, they are not accurate enough for troubleshooting water chemistry issues.  You should get a Taylor test kit and post a full set of results to get the best help on this forum.  

Hope this helps.

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