Brown Water

  • Last Post 05 June 2021
  • Topic Is Solved
DebiFl posted this 03 June 2021

Here is what I did......and I realize I skipped a step (smack head here)

16x10x4 pool with pump 1.5 hp

I SUCK at math. So I googled.

I filled it. It says it has  approx 3200 gallons almost filled.

Ok...the ph was HIGH HIGH HIGH so I brought it down with ph down stuff and got it right in the 7.2-7.6 color zone.

So then I shocked it with 3/4 cup shock (per google). Pump ran over night (because It was like 80pm when I did it)

Have you noticed I forgot to stablize???? Because I believe I was suppose to do that prior to shocking.

Then Monday morning it was BROWN. We do have crap for water...high in magnesene or whatever, I know we in town can't drink it if we are over 50, or infants. High iron, etc. Tuesday, I was told by a friend to put in 3 oz of iron myte which didn't do anything.

Now if made a filter from a bottle and quilting to get the iron particles out. But WHAT IN THE WORLD do I do to fix it.

Do I shock again...when do I add the stablizer? my numbers today are

Total Hardness: 50

Total Chlorine PPm: 1

Bromine PPM: 2

Total Alkalinity: 240

Cyanuric Acid: 0

ph: 7.6

I'm not sure exactly how much of chemicals to put in. Like with the stabilizer, I have no idea how much to put in of that either. I have a daycare party 2moro I was hoping to have the kiddos swimming and it's looking hopeless. I am so hoping you can help this gal who sucks at math.



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Orionthelab posted this 05 June 2021

Congrats Debi!!!  Glad you solved this issue

DebiFl posted this 05 June 2021

Yes! I reschocked and stablized and everything is perfect! I am so thrilled!~!

JCMC70 posted this 05 June 2021

Well you learn something every day. I've never seen this solution before. Thanks for the information and I'm glad it solved your problem. 
Have you stabilized the water yet?

DebiFl posted this 05 June 2021


We put a bottle out about 3pm and changed it at midnight. It was GROSS AND BROWN! We woke up the next morning to a crystal clear pool! It works SO WELL!!!!!!!!!  No iron floating to the bottom of the pool you need to vacuum out.....nothing. Just clear beautiful water.

IT IS DAY 4 STILL CLEAR AND BEAUTIFUL. If you need to add water to your pool, put a coupe of thick socks over the hose, then do this again. No metal out, no other nasty chemicals....JUST THIS!  WE DID NOT PUT IN THE IRON OUT IN THE POOL.....YOU CAN'T SWIM IN THAT.


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JCMC70 posted this 03 June 2021

Hi Debi,

This is gonna be interesting. Given that your water supply has a high lead content, that is most likely the reason the water is brown. 
In addition to the filter you made, you're gonna need to go to a pool supply place and get a sequestration product for metals. They usually go by names like "metal out " or "metal gone". The pool store will know what you are looking for. The directions on the bottle should tell you how much to add per 1000 gallons of water if you already have metals in your water. Multiply the amount it says to add per thousand gallons of water by 3.2 and that is the amount you should add to the pool. The metal out product should bind with the iron in the water and it should fall out, clearing the water. Follow the directions on the product for brushing/vacuuming the pool. 
Once the water is clear you are probably gonna need do a weekly maintenance doseage because you are always gonna be adding water to the pool because of splash out from swimmers, evaporation from the sun or backwashing the filter. The product should also give the amounts for maintenance. 

Stabilizing the Water:

You need to add stabilizer now to keep the sun from eating up all the chlorine. You can do this with 1 of 2 products, liquid stabilizer or dry(granular) stabilizer. 

With liquid stabilizer you can get all of the stabilizer in the water at one time. 
The only "con" to liquid stabilizer is it's more expensive. 
If you decide on liquid stabilizer you will need to add 39 ounces to increase the CYA(stabilizer) level to 35ppm. 
How to add:

With a clean filter and the pump running, Pour the specified amount of stabilizer VERY SLOWLY into the skimmer. After you have poured the stabilizer into the filter you must let the pump run continuously for 48 hours  

Some articles/sites recommend a cya level of 50-60 ppm, but that is not needed to protect the chlorine in the pool. And the higher the cya level is, the higher the free chlorine level must be to sanitize the pool. 

Dry(granular) stabilizer: 

If you decide on dry stabilizer you will need 15oz to increase the cya level in your 3200 gal pool to 35ppm. 
Some articles I've seen say that you can simply broadcast the stabilizer over the pool water. DONT Do THAT! There is a real possibility that you can damage the liner. 
Some articles say to dissolve the stabilizer in a 5 gal bucket of water and then pour it in the pool. The only problem with that is that 5 gallons of water will never dissolve more than a few ounces of stabilizer and it takes about 48 hrs. So you would need 10-15 days to dissolve 15 ounces. 

The best way to add dry stabilizer to the pool is to take the whole 15 ounces and put it in a pantry hose leg, Make a structure so you can hang the pantyhose in front of the return opening but not touching the wall. Then just let the filter run. Every 3-4 hours squeeze the stabilizer in the pantyhose to help it dissipate faster. Let the pump run until all of the stabilizer is gone and for an additional 48 hours.


Chlorine Level:

The recommended chlorine level for a pool your size with a cya level of 35 ppm is 3 to 4 ppm

The type of sanitizer you use dictates how much you need. ie;

You need 17 oz of 8% strength liquid bleach 

You would need 2.5 oz of 65% cal- hypo granular chlorine, etc,

And you should check the chlorine levels every day to make sure you maintain 3-4 ppm free chlorine. Most chlorine products will tell you how much you should add to increase the chlorine levels 1 ppm. 

As a last thing, where did you get the readings for the chemical levels? Did you do them with a kit or did you take a water sample to a pool store?

I'm concerned about the very high total alkalinity levels.