Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Solar Sonic Super Chlorinated Out of Control

This Memorial Day weekend was a homeowners project weekend bonanza. After I painted our bedroom on Saturday, and it came out great, on Sunday I tackled another project of mine which was to hook up this solar heater I bought so that the pool that I spend so much time, money and effort maintaining actually gets some use. So here's what it all looks like.

The device is called a SunHeater solar heater. I got this puppy from Walmart for around $185 with free shipping to store and then I also bought the mounting kit for another $25 from another website, whose name I forget, but they were cheaper by like $15 vs any other place I saw it online.

Anyway, I have this privacy fence on our lower pool deck and decided, since its 22 feet long and this sucker is 20 feet long, that this was the perfect spot to put this thing because otherwise its laying on the deck or one the grass killing it.

After drilling pilot holes and driving in all the screws that hold the brackets, I was about to begin manhandling this thing into place when luckily my Mom and Dad showed up and my dad helped me immeasurably in getting this thing on the wall. The brackets, in some cases had to be moved and he helped me lay the whole thing out. It was an unfortunate thing in that we had to figure out the whole thing from the pictures they sent because the directions enclosed were mostly in French.

Long story short we finally got this thing mounted and now it just needs sunny days with the pump running to drive the water through it to heat it. We'll see how that goes.

The other item I added to the pool this weekend was a chlorinator which I got at BranchBrook in brick. It was $25 and maybe another $10 for hose clamps and a couple threaded pool hose fittings. The floating Chlorinator was getting it done so hopefully this does as I don't like all the zeroes showing up when I test the water.

Friday, May 22, 2009

This Pool is Clear

Clear, shining water. Cool, refreshing, sun dappled surface. Our pool is all these things now as the green is gone, the blue is there and the pleasant smell of a chlorinated pool fills the back yard.

The big breakthrough came on wednesday as the filter cleared the water enough to really see the bottom well. At that point, I broke out the vacuum and spent 2-3 hours simply vacuuming, emptying the leaf trap, backflushing, priming, vacuuming, repeat. By about 8:00 that pool was clear of the debris of fall and winter. Once the fileter was giving one final good back flush, i loaded it up with fresh DE and set it to filter all night into Thursday afternoon. By last night it was clear as a bell like the picture above shows and I dropped Wanda in to do a little automatic vacuuming although Wanda is having its issues as she isn't moving all that well so now I have to figure out what her issue is but that's ok as I can just do the vacuuming the old fashioned way for now.

This weekend, I'll give the pool sides a good brushing, power wash the ladder and drop that in, and if it really is doable, the solar heater will get set up. That might be tough because I also plan on painting the bedroom although that should just take Saturday to do. I love long weekends!

Happy Memorial day all!

Monday, May 18, 2009

A Bottom in Sight!

This moring I woke up and in the early morning light, stepped on to my deck and looked down on the pool after it had been filter the entire night. Much to my delight, I could make out the faint traces of the pile of leaves on the bottom that had slipped into the pool when I removed the cover.

It may not be apparent in the picture but if you look close, you can see areas that are dark smudges. Avast! Those be leaves, matey! Yaar, indeed, those be leaves!

My hope is that since the filter will run until about 2 pm and the sun is out a little more today than it was yesterday, the combination, with all the chlorine I loaded up the water with, will result in even more clearness. Either way, I be takin the vacuum to it tonight, me hearties!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The Battle of the Green Pool

When last we left this saga, it was October and I was converting the pool from baquacil to chlorine. With maybe just a day or two to spare, I got the conversion done and got the cover on the pool before every leaf on every tree anywhere near my yard fell all at once with amazing speed.

Fast forward to yesterday and I decided with the nice weather and plenty of unexplainable motivation, it was time to see what I had under the pool cover awaiting me. Now I would have hoped, under normal circumstances, to have expected to see a nice fairly workable pool but I knew that probably wasn't going to be the case due to the branch, the diameter of a quarter, that had pierced my brand new cover less than a month after it had been put on after this crazy wind storm back in November. The hole was right where the water for the cold months collected so I figured all sorts of decaying trees and stuff and that nasty water had infiltrated.

It had. It was green.

Hurrying off to my shed, I returned armed with chemicals. Chlorine Tablets. Trichlor Shock. The blue stuff that you poor in to make your filter more efficient. I also broke out my cool new water tester. And trust me, its cool. 2 AA batteries and the power of water analysis without having to determine shades of color on some silly scale. Low alcalinity so added some soda ash. Top notch Danny! Top notch!

Two bags of shock and all the blue stuff I had left and today, the pool is pleasantly... beginning to turn blue.

Off to Leslie Pool for more shock, more blue stuff (clarifier I think its called), more soda ash just because I'm low and dropped the wanda pool vac in. Go wanda!

Monday, February 2, 2009

What's old is new again

So I'm blogging about nothing and since I haven't blogged in a long time, for anyone who cares to notice, it will much like business as usual.  All about nothing.
Since my blog is linked on greasetruck.org and ostensibly any traffic I get probably originated from there, its probably pretty obvious that the old homappage is back and the Joomla experiment is over.  Now I liked Joomla but it wasn't what one would call mature software, it was like most open-source stuff, always in a certain state of broken and me not being a developer in the programming language sense, I couldn't fix it half the time because it was PHP.  So I worked around its limitations.  Well, what I noticed over time was that Joomla was also subject to SQL injections so it wasn't very secure and I'd have random ad code inserted into the HTML template for the site and who know what that really did.  It was damned uncomfortable to deal with so that was really the last straw as I was sick of dealing with its natural slowness and having to get on Live Chat with my host because CGI was erroring or whatever.  So it was fun but now what's old is new again and me thinks when I finally find some time, I'll completely throw out the current site and put something up a little newer and more modern looking as the current page looks dated to me.  It's mainly my start page anyway and a gateway to the messageboard and DKB is probably the only other person to notice anyway. ;)
Of course finding time is the key thing.  i have no time anymore but not because of bad things.  I love being a homeowner and I work on our home constantly now trying to pare down our expenses and modernize and find efficiencies.  Its very cool but takes energy and time which isn't always in great abundance.  Because time is tough to find certain things have lost their place with me.  Rutgers Basketball for one.  It doesn't help that the team just simply sucks so badly but its also a long ass ride from Brick by yourself, Jay is in Dallas now, Abhi isn't a regular and maybe i'm just moving on.  Most games are viewable in some fashion so I stay up with the team like that but I think this year was it for me as a season tix holder.  Going to games just isn't that much fun anymore.  Oh, and they suck as I mentioned before.  I guess I'd rather keep that Grand in my pocket now.
Life is also too busy with a baby on the way.  Sue has been doing great with her pregnancy and we find out boy/girl in less than 2 weeks so that's really exciting!  But time/money... I'll need more and more.  Sorry RU Hoops, something has to give.  Other things will give too so don't feel too singled out and maybe I'll be back someday.  And to be honst... I've also really rediscovered hockey which I've always loved but am so much more into this year, especially with the Devils kicking so much ass.
Ok, that's all the nothing for now.  Maybe I'll try to get this blog more regular.  Don't count on it.