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Special Procedures



Special procedures

Besides the regular maintenance of the pool and spa there are certain other special procedures that might be helpful in increasing the life and utility of any swimming facilities.

Draining a Pool

Draining the pool or spa is simple, if you take into consideration certain factors. It might seem obvious that you use your submersible pump to do the job, but this simple task can create many problems for it may require certain procedures. For more information on correct drainage and disposal of pool water, contact the state or the regional office of the environmental protection agency.

  1. Before starting the job, turn off all circulation equipment at the circuit breakers, so there is no chance it will start up from a time clock.
  2. At a commercial pool, run yellow caution tape around the pool deck to keep unwary visitors from falling into an empty pool.
  3. Drain the pool. But make sure to know if the area is known to have a high water table. Damage to the pool can be caused by hydrostatic pressure or water tables, thus it is not advisable to drain the pool during these times.

When draining a pool with your submersible pump and hoses, direct the flow to a deck drain. Initially watch the flow into the drain, once you start the pumping, a clogged drain can flood the backyard or flush the water back into the pool. Usually the deck drains are made of PVC and may not be able to carry so much water under pressure. So check for soil erosion under these drains before draining. If deck drains cannot accommodate the flow, connect it with the sewer, making sure that it does not back up the storm drain and flood the street.

In some jurisdictions there might be restrictions on pumping out pools relative to the permissible volume and even the permissible chemical makeup. Extremely low-pH water might have to be neutralized before pumping it into municipal storm water or sewer lines. Check your local codes before draining.

When lowering a submersible pump into a pool check for loose wires. Any loose connections or wires might electrify the water. A ground fault interrupter (GFCI) should be plugged into the wall socket before plugging in the cord of the pump.

Plaster Break-in

The new plaster break-in is one of the most important examples of your professionalism and knowledge of pool and spa maintenance. By following the procedures outlined in next sections, without taking shortcuts, you will find new plaster break-in is an important part.

Why Break in Plaster?

There are two basic reasons to break in plaster rather than just turn on the pump and start swimming. The reasons are:

  1. Remove the plaster dust from the water.
  2. To balance the water chemistry so that water itself does not destroy a good plaster job.

Plaster Break-in Procedure

The break-in procedure is the same for a new pool or a replastering of an older pool.

To accomplish this simple task, keep a step-by-step list of break-in procedures, detailing the brand names of chemicals used and the daily break-in schedule.

It is important to document that you followed the break-in procedure that was agreed upon. Keep a clipboard in the equipment area to list each action taken each day as the break-in proceeds. The notes should include the date, time, weather conditions, test readings, and chemicals applied or actions taken. This is important because plaster discoloration or roughness often are the result of a faulty break-in and it is much easier to blame that process than to investigate the plaster job or other hidden mistakes.

Break-in step by step

After any new construction of a pool, there are two basic reasons to break- in plaster. First, to remove the plaster dust from the water, which will otherwise settle and build up as hard, rough scale. The pool is filled with water before the plaster dries, so the actual drying (curing) takes place underwater. Adding the water before the plaster dries allows it to be pushed into place against the pool shell, pressed evenly by the weight of the water. It doesn't shrink, become brittle, or crack. The second reason to break in the plaster is to balance the water chemistry so that the water itself does not destroy a good plaster job. Therefore, the break-in process is designed to create plaster-friendly water that is neither etching nor scaling. There are many variations to the steps needed for a successful break-in of new plaster, but here are a few recommendations.

  1. Inspect the plaster work for trowel marks or footprints, and look for signs of sloppy work. They should be seamless and smooth, without trowel marks or high spots. Bring any imperfections in the plaster job to the attention of the builder or plasterer for correction before filling.
  2. Test the source of the fill water for heavy metals such as copper, iron, and manganese. If you detect high levels of metals in the source water, you should be advised that additional chelating agents will be required and you can adjust your chemical balancing in general to avoid precipitating these metals onto the new plaster. Similarly, if the testing of the source water reveals it to be of exceptionally high or low pH and/or total alkalinity, adjust it.
  3. Filling the pool or spa should be done with care. The water cascading several feet down will damage the soft plaster below. Provide a cushion for the water when filling in the pool, so that the weight of the water does not leave any mark on the fresh plaster. Never walk on the fresh plaster; this will leave footprints. When filling the pool do not leave it half way, for this will affect the curing factor of the pool. For the same reason do not add chemicals into the pool when filling the pool. Additions of chemicals should be done once the pool is full.
  4. When the pool or spa is full checking all the equipment. Turn on the circulation equipment, filters and also check the pressure on the filter, for later references.
  5. Purge all air from the system, especially from the filter. Filtration at this point is critical. Remove any air from the filter and run it for at least 12 hours daily to remove the debris from the plaster-in.
  6. Do not allow the pool to be heated, or turn on the fountains or waterfall for at least three weeks after start-up, for the force of the water can damage the fresh plaster.
  7. Test the water for pH, total alkalinity, and calcium hardness at this point, there should be no chlorine residual to test. Plaster is made from calcium compounds, and if the water is low in calcium hardness specifically and total alkalinity in general, it will leach calcium out of the plaster, effectively dissolving it. The first component to balance is total alkalinity. Since this will also raise the pH. Next bring the calcium level up (unless it is already in the 200- to 400-ppm range) by adding calcium chloride to the water, as directed to use. Finally, adjust the pH. Generally you will need to lower the pH, but this must be done gradually. As noted in the water chemistry, pH readings take awhile to stabilize, particularly during the break-in process when no conditioner has yet been added to the water. Test the pH every four hours and, using the acid demand test, determine the amount of acid needed. Regardless of the result of that test, however, add no more than 1 pint of acid per 10,000 gallons of water at any one time. In this way you will avoid spiking the pH. Also, do not add sanitizer or stabilizer at this point. Algae doesn't prosper on smooth surfaces, in alkaline conditions like water curing new plaster, or on surfaces that are constantly being brushed.
  8. Brush every inch of the plaster surface thoroughly and vigorously at least three times each day, once the circulation begins. Brushing knocks loose the plaster dust, avoiding scale build-up. Brush from the top of the walls down and from the shallow to the deep end, with the suction concentrated at the main drain to pull the dust and minerals into the filter.
  9. Plaster dust will quickly clog the filter, so be prepared to clean it as soon as the first day after starting the circulation. Break down and clean the filter each time filtration slows and/or the filter pressure exceeds 10 psi over its clean operating pressure.
  10. After 2 days, vacuum the pool at least once each day before brushing using a brush vacuum to aid in the brushing action and also avoid the wheel mark on the soft plaster.
  11. After 4 days, sanitizer can be added, gradually raising the residual to normal levels. As in all chemical applications, add gradually and make sure it is distributed evenly.

Continue these procedures for at least one week, preferably two till you see no plaster dust coming off when you brush. Keep swimmers out of the pool during the break-in period.

Leak Repair

Any pool or a spa can develop leaks from one of the many places like, equipment, plumbing or even the pool or the spa vessel itself.

When there is an unexplained loss of water, there is some leakage problem. Signs of water in the equipment area and exposed plumbing will usually yield results that there is leakage in the plumbing, however, buried plumbing have leaks where it can't be seen. While the worst leaks require excavation and other repair techniques, let us find the leaks and deal with them.

Finding Leaks

As noted previously, the first place to look for leaks is in the exposed equipment and plumbing, but there are often visible signs of leaks that are otherwise hidden from view. Cracks in the pool or spa interior might be a sign of leaks. Tiles falling off the walls or loose coping stones often suggest structural leaks from shifting ground, which might have been caused by a water leak eroding the soil. Even cracked or lifting segments of deck might indicate the source of a pool leak. Tree roots might also cause leak.

Evaporation test

Check for the rate of evaporation of water from the pool or a spa as compared to normal evaporation of water on any given day. If there is a significant rate of water loss, than the rate of evaporation, it is sure sign of leak in the pool or spa.

Dye testing

Another simplest method of detecting a leak in the vessel itself is a dye test. As the name implies, a colored dye is disbursed in suspected areas and, as the dye disappears, the leak is found. The dye test can easily be conducted using an old test kit reagent bottle or similar squeeze bottle filled with food dye. You will need to check many locations like the cracks near the steps, corners and the tile fittings. Continue to visually inspect the interior surfaces, looking for cracks or discolored patches of plaster. After you have thoroughly examined the pool with the dye test, you will know what repair problems you are faced with.

Drain-down test

This method is that it is an indicator, not a precise tool. If you have tried the evaporation test and dye testing, or if you are not a good diver and wish to skip the dye test, try the drain-down method. The objective is to determine when the level stops lowering as a result of the leak. Marking the level of water evaporation at the same time each day to establish a rate of leak.

Leak detectors and pressure testing

When the previous methods fail to help you locate the leak, there are two other methods of leak location. There are electronic listening devices called geophones that can actually hear water dripping or flowing. By applying such devices around the pool and related plumbing, an operator can identify where water is moving out of the system. These devices are expensive and their operation requires a great deal of experience and skill.

The second method used to find leaks is pressure testing equipment. It is not difficult to pressure test a plumbing system but the amount of time and additional equipment (plugs, adapter fittings, compressed air, and related fittings) makes this type of testing impractical. Many pool builders and plumbing contractors are equipped to pressure test pool or spa systems. Certain companies conduct pressure testing.

Skimmer Repair and Replacement

Skimmers are essentially separate devices hanging on the side of the pool or spa wall, and due to shifting of the earth and constant erosion from swiftly moving water make small leaks in this spot inevitable. When the plumbing is of copper leaks in this location are accelerated by the practice of adding chemicals directly to the skimmer. The high acidity of the chemicals eats away at the copper in these fittings.

Plastic skimmers, when used, are prone to separation at the seams. To determine if that is the cause of a leak, use the drain-down method in just the skimmer. Turn off the equipment and plug the skimmer suction ports. If the water level drops at a rate faster than evaporation, the skimmer is leaking. PVC plastic skimmers can often be repaired in place, without excavating the skimmer.

Repair or replacement of a skimmer require some simple excavation, masonry, and basic plumbing work. Before starting, drain the pool level below the skimmer level and turn off the circulation equipment. To prevent the debris entering the pool and the plumbing line, plug the throat and the suction port with rags. Now cutting the area around the skimmer, remove the concrete, making sure not to damage the plumbing. Once the plumbing and the skimmer are exposed, remove the old skimmer carefully. Pressure test the plumbing for any leaks. Now clean the area around and set the new skimmer in place and plumb it to the existing suction lines. Fill in the area with the removed soil and then with concrete to give extra stability to the skimmer. Trowel smooth and finish the area. If the new skimmer doesn't exactly correspond to the opening in the pool wall, adapt-cut the pool wall opening and set in the skimmer. If the new skimmer is not the same depth as the old one, use depth-extender collars to bring the level up to the correct height, and then set it in the skimmers.

On older pools that include an equalizer line through the pool wall at the base of the skimmer, patch the wall and install a two-port skimmer instead, plumbing one port to the suction line and the other to the main drain, or permanently closing it off if there is no pipe to the main drain from the skimmer location.

The replacement of the skimmer in fiberglass or vinyl-lined pools, will be more a process of unbolting and disassembly, replacing the skimmer and gaskets that separate it from the pool wall. Since each assembly is different, reassembling should be done by carefully noting the steps while disassembling.

Patching and Repairing

Plaster

It is the best opportunity to check for any delaminations, plaster blisters or the pop-offs, when the pool is drained for any reason. And depending on the damage done the work may require patching to plastering job.

The causes of delamination, also called calcium bleed, can be numerous. From sub quality construction to improper water chemistry and to rusted rebar. So check the entire area of the pool for any plaster faults.

Once you have identified blisters, chip the loose plaster away all around the area until you reach solid, dry plaster. When completely exposed, clean the area of all water and loose debris. To make sure the final patch blends in and appears even, clean up the jagged edges of the blister area by sanding the perimeter. You are now ready to patch.

If the delamination is due to rusted steel or rebar, expose all the rusted steel and cut it out. Fill the area with the quick-set cement, allow it to dry and then give it a finish with the surface plaster patch. If the area is large, try to replace the same amount, size, and distribution pattern that you have removed and then proceed to repair as above.

The other application method is underwater, where you work by hand with a fist-size ball of material and push it into the patch area with your fingers. Again, use more than you need so you can scrape off the excess, feathering the edges into the existing plaster for a smooth finish. It saves time, money, and water over draining the pool. In case of deeper works, it is advisable to drain the pool.

One last plaster patching technique is used to fill small surface cracks. The objective of patching small cracks is to slightly widen the crack so that it will accept patch material. Using a small chisel create a slight V shape along the crack. Fill the exposed area, either troweling on the patch material or rubbing it into the crack with your fingers and smoothing over the resulting repair with a straightedge.

Coping and tile

Popped tiles and coping stones, may be one of the reasons of water leakage and erosion. Loose tiles are sometimes an early sign of built up pressure. And since the coping stones are set on concrete deck, excavating the underlying deck and checking for the problem needs to be done.

To remove the tile or deal with the coping stones it is advisable to drain the water level up to the tile level. Remove the tile or the stone from its bad section carefully so as not to damage other tiles. Chip the tile away to expose the mortar bed of pool wall beneath. Cleanse the area and fill in any loose soil area and then reassemble the tile back into the wall by using the plaster patch material as the backfill.

To remove the coping stones, it is easier to pull them free if they are loose already. If the stones are not loose then you may need to cut the joints using a concrete saw, before pulling them free. Chisel and clean the underlying area as needed. Remove old expansion joint material and examine the area between the pool deck and the bond beam. If there is no space between the coping and tiles, for shifting and expansion, both the stone and the tile will come loose. This is the cause of the problem, and it will cause more loose stones and tiles in the future unless the pressure is relieved and an expansion space provided. Chisel or cut away any material that is pressing against the pool wall, never cutting the pool wall or bond beam to create the expansion joint.

When the expansion joint is complete, fill in any dirt that might have eroded away to complete the backfill area. Prepare the plaster patch material. You can also use a premixed waterproof product like Thoroseal, applying two thin coats before resetting the stones. The advantage of using a waterproof mortar is that you prevent water from weeping or leeching into the backfill again.

Clean the stones of dirt and old, loose mortar. Apply a light coat of patch material to the underside of the stone, then sufficient patch material to the mortar bed to bring the stone up to its original level. Tap the stones in place with a rubber mallet. Prepare a brown coat of mortar to reset the tiles. Apply the tiles in the same manner as the coping stones. Regrout the stones and tiles. Grout can be premixed material purchased at the supply store or hardware store, or it can be mixed by combining one part white cement with two parts sand. Overfill, then wipe away the excess to a smooth, level surface. Do the same with the tiles.

Complete the expansion joint. Fill the joint with sand almost up to the last inch. Fill the last inch with flexible mastic or silicone joint sealer, which can be poured as a liquid or injected like caulk. Follow the product label directions for application, especially concerning temperature and humidity ranges.

If you understand the basic underlying construction of the coping and tile area of the pool or spa, you will be able to make these basic masonry repairs. Many will not be as complicated as described, requiring only rehanging a few tiles or resetting a single loose stone. if that single tile or stone keeps coming loose however, or if more than one are loose, follow the procedures described earlier to determine the cause and effect a long-term repair.

Vinyl liners

There are numerous manufacturers of vinyl liners for pools, using several different compositions of vinyl, PVC, or rubber-based materials. Thus the liners are sold with detailed instructions and repair kits.

Locating leaks in a vinyl liner is the same as in any other vessel. Start with an evaporation test to verify that there is a leak, then use the dye test or drain-down method to locate the exact leak location. Since vinyl-lined pools are often assembled aboveground, it might be a simple matter of checking around the pool and under any adjacent decking with a flashlight looking for wet areas.

Most repair kits detail the process of drying and cleaning the area to be patched with a solvent, roughing up the area to be glued with sandpaper for a better bond, then gluing a patch of the same material over the tear or puncture.

Acrylic spas

Cracks in molded fiberglass or acrylic spas can be easily patched. To detect the leak, follow the previously described methods using evaporation, dye, or drain-down. Leaks in spas often occur where plumbing meets the spa shell. Shells often move away from their deck supports when the ground shifts and are especially susceptible to soil erosion problems. Since bather loads and displaced water are high in relation to the total size of a spa, water frequently washes away fill or base materials allowing the weight of bathers to shift the spa and separate plumbing.

Cracks or breaks in the acrylic can be repaired with materials available at the supply house. The technique is similar to patching small cracks in plaster, where you widen the crack to accommodate a fill material. Follow the package instructions for mixing, curing, and drying times. Slightly overfill the crack, then wipe off the excess for slight shrinking takes place during drying. When it is completely dry, sand off the excess down to the level of the surrounding surface. The patch must be painted to match the color of the spa. Color powders or liquids are provided in the kit to mix with the base enamel paint, also provided. A clear topcoat seals the paint job and adds luster to the finish. The topcoat is also provided in the repair kit.

Technique to Remodel

Most builders today offer shallower, smaller pools that provide adequate room for swimming laps and recreation in a small backyard, but require less attention and upkeep. Builders today will actually build a new, smaller pool inside the shell of a large older pool, using the original plumbing and equipment, and filling in the difference with backfill and landscaping.

There are several other ways to remodel a pool or spa. New decks and landscaping will improve the look of an older pool. As for the vessel itself, the water technician can offer resurfacing of the interior, new tile, and recaulking of the expansion joints to help the look of an existing pool or spa.

Plastering and Replastering

Plasters significantly impacts the chemistry of the pool, so it is important to understand the plastering process to know how chemicals will affect the plaster surfaces and vice versa. Because there are several approaches to replastering a pool or spa, it is important to understand and evaluate the needs of the pool. Plastering a new pool or replastering an old one should be done by the professionals but since nothing is more critical to the successful maintenance of a pool or spa, it is valuable to understand the plastering process.

New Plaster

Let us understand the new plastering process:

The gunite or concrete pool shell must be clean of loose dirt, algae, and water before plaster is applied. To accomplish a contaminant-free environment, wash and scrub the shell with chlorine and water to remove organic waste. Next, wash and scrub with an acid solution of one part muriatic acid to four parts water to eliminate minerals and concrete dust.

Plaster will not adhere to an acidic surface. Every bit of acid must be removed from the concrete shell. Neutralize the acid with trisodium phosphate (TSP) or baking soda. Use 1 pound in 5 gallons of water of either product, creating a wash. Thoroughly scrub and pump out the shell. The concrete of the shell must be moist but not have standing water. The shell is now ready for plastering.

Remove all plumbing outlet nozzles and any removable hardware such as light fixtures or ladders. Stuff rags in the plumbing to keep plaster out of it and tape off the threads of any fittings. Finally, tape the bottom of the tile line to keep it clean.

The plaster material is a mixture of one part white cement for every two parts aggregate (sand and marble dust, also called marcite, or sand and limestone). Calcium chloride is added to help the mixture set up more quickly, but never more than 2 percent of the weight of the cement (not the total mix). Plaster is mixed in a cement mixing drum using a paddle mixer. Color powders are added to the mix if the final plaster is to be colored. Water is added, roughly 2 gallons for every 100 pounds of dry mix, until a heavy semi liquid consistency is achieved. Water should be gradually added for the right consistency, for excess of water will not give a good plastering material.

The plaster is applied by trowel. The first coat should be scratched on thin to fill and smooth out the roughness of the concrete. Then, two more thicker coats are applied while the underlying coats are still wet. It takes several plasterers to apply the material fast enough to finish in a few hours so that the pool can be filled before the plaster dries out and cracks. Care must be taken to avoid leaving plaster on the tile or fittings. When cleaning these, avoid running water over the fresh plaster; this can leave furrows or stains. Break in the new plaster as described previously.

When plaster cures, the topcoat becomes almost transparent, allowing any imperfections in the shell to show through. The first coat of scratch plaster is important in leveling out such imperfections, although it cannot completely hide them. If gray lines or slightly darker spots appear at various places after the pool is full, this is usually the reason. Therefore, the finish job of the shell is as important as the scratch coat.

When the concrete shell is poured by hand, such imperfections are common. In these cases, it is valuable to grind or chisel down any high spots prior to plastering. A good plaster job over a well-made gunite shell will last up to 20 years.

Replastering

When plastering the shell for the first time, the plaster permeates the pores and roughness of the gunite surface, creating a firm mechanical bond. When replastering, the new plaster must adhere to the old smooth surface with either a new mechanical bond, a chemical bond, or a combination of both. There are several ways to prepare the old surface to enhance the bonding of the new plaster. Depending on the condition of the old plaster, one or more of these preparations might be used. The surface preparation is the most important step of the replastering process.

The first preparation method is to etch the old surface with acid, leaving it rough and pitted and thereby promoting a better mechanical bond for the new plaster. The old plaster is washed with raw muriatic acid to deeply etch the surface. Scrubbing and washing after application of the acid, helps in removing the loose dirt and organic waste. All the acid must be thoroughly washed.

The other method to remove the old plaster, is to chip it away, creating a jagged, rough surface for the new plaster ton enhance the mechanical bonding of the new material. Finally, the removal of the old plaster can be accomplished, although expensively, by jack hammering the old material off of the pool shell. Care should be taken not to crack the pool shell.

After preparing the surface with any of the methods, a chemical bonding agent is added to the scratch coat. The bonding agent helps the scratch coat adhere to the shell on one side, then helps the plaster adhere to the scratch coat on the other side.

Other than these preparation differences, the original plaster job and the replaster job are alike. A good replastering job can last more than 10 years.

Fiberglass Coatings

The technology for surfacing gunite pools with fiberglass is new. Because fiberglass coatings and their applications are a unique technology and requires specialization in such works. Fiberglass coatings require the same surface preparation as replastering. The best mechanical bond is achieved by roughing up the surface prior to application. Fiberglass sheeting is laid on the pool interior and painted in place with chemical resins and fixatives. There is insufficient data available to evaluate if such coatings exceed the performance of plaster, but the obvious benefit of a fiberglass coating is that water and maintenance chemicals cannot corrode and destroy it like plaster.

Paint

The purpose of coatings of any kind over the gunite material of the shell is to prevent leaking, because concrete itself is porous. Modern pool paints are an attractive, inexpensive way to coat gunite, fiberglass, plaster, or any other interior surface with a smooth, colorful, waterproof coating. It is an inexpensive alternative to other coatings.

Before painting, evaluate the surface being covered. As with other coatings, the success of painting depends largely on the preparation and qualities of the subsurface being covered.

Though paint is an inexpensive alternate, it will not last much longer than three to five years and might begin to peel or dissolve prior to that. Colors might be vivid initially, but will fade throughout the life of the paint, especially the brighter the original color.

As a general rule, cover old paint with new paint of the same type. You can use water-based epoxies to cover chlorinated rubber, but not the other way around. Always follow the paint manufacturer's label directions and guidelines.

A general understanding of the procedure is as follows.

  1. Prepare the surface by cleaning, and removing any loose materials from the pool.
  2. Acid wash the entire area to be painted, to etch the surface to create a roughness that will help the paint adhere.
  3. Rinse and scrub again with clean water and remove any acid or dirt adhering.
  4. Allow the surface to dry thoroughly. Following the product directions, mix the paint, enough to do the entire first coat.
  5. Apply a thin but even coat. The first coat will use two to three times as much paint as subsequent coats, except when applying over fiberglass.
  6. After waiting the manufacturer's recommended time between coats, apply a second and, if necessary, a third coat. On all coats, but especially these finish coats, paint the entire surface at one time.
  7. Let the paint cure as recommended by the manufacturer, then refill the pool or spa.

Expansion Joints

The expansion joints are the places where water may fill in and corrode the joints or sometimes the joints shrink and crack.

Repairing expansion joints is time-consuming, but an easy job. First remove the sealant from the joint with the help of an appropriate tool. Clean the joint of any loose dirt and sealant residue. There are several types of mastics and silicone caulk sealants that can be used to close expansion joints. Simply follow the directions on the package, making sure of that the sealant has been applied properly.

Acid Washing

To remove scale causing minerals and chemicals, it is necessary to drain the pool from time to time an this is a good time to acid wash the pool.

Before acid washing, it is important to know how old the plaster is and if it has been acid washed before. If the plaster is nearing the end of its useful life (10 to 15 years), there might not be enough material to wash without stripping the surface down to the gunite. Similarly, if the pool has been acid washed two or three times already, it might be time to consider replastering, painting, or some other recoating.

The traditional method of acid washing requires draining the pool as described.

Standard drain method of acid washing

After draining the pool,  the pool should be prepared for acid wash. Remove any  loose or removable hardware such as ladders, rails, or metallic return outlet nozzles. Remove the main drain cover. Clean out the main drain. If the pool is plumbed with copper, stuff the outlet pipes, skimmer, and main drain with rubber plugs or rags soaked in water and soda ash to neutralize and/or keep out as much acid as possible. Rinse (and scrub if needed) any other organic material (oils, leaves, and dirt) from the plaster, because the acid will not dissolve these and therefore will not clean the plaster beneath.

Also make sure to protect yourself with rubber boots, gloves and a respirator to protect you from inhaling acid fumes. Always take care of your person while doing the acid wash by keeping a garden hose with running water handy.

The effectiveness of acid washing is a function of the strength of the mixture and the length of time it contacts the plaster. During the contact time of the acid with the area (30 seconds), scrub the area with a stiff- bristle brush and then wash it off with clean water. If the stains do not disappear, you might need to leave the mixture in contact longer. Sometimes it may need higher strength acid solution to remove the stains. Keep rinse water flowing on the pool bottom when you are not actually rinsing an area that has been acid washed to neutralize acid on the pool bottom. Keep the pump operating to remove the waste from the hopper. The running water from the hose keeps the bottom and the hopper from the drastic effect of the acid from the long hours of work, since all the acid that collects at the bottom and gets drained from the hopper will be diluted as it leaves the pool.

After cleaning the tile lines and removing the stains, rinse the pool area thoroughly with water. Clean all the fixtures and hard wares before reinstallation. Let pool dry completely before painting.

Fill the pool as per the procedures described in the draining section. Let the water circulate in the pool for some time, and then check for the chemicals and water chemistry, making the adjustments as needed.