Types Of Algae That Can Invade A Salt Water Pool
There is a myriad of ways that algae spores can enter your pool, including:
- On your bathing suit, pool toys, pool cleaning tools, etc.
- Wind can blow spores into your pool.
- Heavy rains can wash spores into your pool.
- Direct sunlight can break down chlorine faster, leading to algae overgrowth.
- High temperatures can accelerate the growth of algae once it is in your pool.
Several different types of algae can set up shop in your pool. The type of algae will determine how difficult it will be to remove.
Salt Water Pool Systems
How Do Salt Water Pool Systems Work?
Theres a common misconception that salt water pools dont contain chlorine, but sanitize water by producing its own chlorine with an electrolysis process.
Commonly referred to as chlorine generators, salt water pool systems make an electrolysis process with a control box and a salt cell. As pool water passes through the salt cell its exposed to a low voltage of electric current sent from the control box, which turns dissolved salt into sodium hypochlorite and hypochlorous acid. Hypochlorous acid is the same sanitizing component produced when any type of chlorine is added to pool water.
Salt Water Pool System Pros:
- Less frequent shock treatment
- Slow release of chlorine can stop algae buildup
- Full cleaning is only required once a year, i.e.: draining the pool, changing filters, scrubbing surfaces and inspecting the chlorine generator
Pool Environment Quality:
- Lower chlorine levels create softer feeling water
- Kind to eyes, hair and swimsuits
- Softer feeling skin after swimming
- Salt does not need to be stored with special consideration
- Pool salt is inexpensive in the short term
- Less expensive day-to-day chemical needs
- Install the system with a fiberglass pool surface to avoid damage costs
Salt Water Pool System Cons:
Pool Environment Quality:
Test And Adjust Salt Concentration
- Saltwater pool systems operate efficiently only when salt is in the right concentration.
- Different chlorine generators require different salinity levels. This is the first thing you need to take into consideration before adding or reducing salt in your pool.
- Chlorine generators operate well with salinity levels between 2500 and 3500 ppm. You must either test the salinity level before adjusting it or use a chlorine generator that monitors and displays the salinity reading.
- Cooler geographic regions will experience reduced water conductivity, and if you are taking the reading of salinity from the generator, you may get a much lower and inaccurate reading, so you need to be extra careful not to add too much salt.
- Make sure that you dont add too much salt into the pool. The only way to reduce salinity is by draining the water and refilling with fresh water.
- Test for salinity every week. Keep in mind that salt levels will be recycled during the process of chlorine production, and you may not need to add more unless the level falls way below the recommended range.
- Here is a salinity calculator that will guide you on the correct amount of salt to add to your pool to avoid excess salinity.
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Before Closing Your Salt Water Pool
- Lower The Salt LevelUse salt test strips for an accurate reading and when the season starts cooling down, do not add anymore salt to the pool. It is better not to have a lot of salt in your pool toward the end of the season.
- Balance The Water ChemistryBalancing your waters chemistry is important for all pools during closing time. Check the pH, alkalinity and calcium hardness. Keep in mind that as the temperature drops without circulation its easier for salts to form crystals.
- Clean Your PoolMake sure that your salt water pool is spotless! While cleaning any pool is important, it is especially important for pools that have an extra load of dissolved salt in the water. If your pool cover doesnt fit tightly enough, you may also have to sweep around the pool every few weeks in order to keep debris out during winter!
- Stain And ScaleUse a stain and scale preventive for metal and mineral control. Let the filter run 8-10 hours after adding mineral and stain remover because it will circulate the product thoroughly.
- EnzymesWhen your pool has a mesh cover, you can add an enzyme product to keep your pool protected from stains. Use a winter pool enzyme to prevent winter pool stains on a salt pool.
Mix The Muriatic Acid Or Cell Cleaner
- Muriatic acid is used to remove the deposits from the salt cells filters, but its very strong, so you need to dilute it.
- Fill a clean pail halfway with water, then add the muriatic acid: start with five parts water to one part acid.
- Never add water to an acid always add the acid to the water!
- While occasional cleaning of a cell is acceptable, its best to only do so when required. Only clean your cell when it actually needs it, dont give it a wash just because you have a few hours to kill on Sunday, and you dont fancy a trip to the in-laws!
While the acid removes scaling, it also erodes the plates slightly, over time, so no more than necessary.
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How To Clean A Salt Cell
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A salt cell is used in a saltwater pool. It’s the part of the system that allows chlorine to be produced naturally rather than added, as in a standard pool. Sometimes this cell needs to be cleaned because minerals and calcium build up on plates inside the cell. You’ll need to periodically check the cell to see if it needs to be cleaned, then use physical or chemical methods to clean it.
How To Remove Algae From A Salt Water Pool
There is no huge difference between a salt water pool and swimming pool with regular chlorine. You may think it would be harmful if you add chlorine into a salt water pool. But it is not in this case.
Most saltwater systems are produced with a button or switch to allow you to super chlorinate water in the pool. However, this feature is not a replacement for chlorine shock. To oxidize your pool, you may need something stronger than super chlorination. In fact, it is still necessary to do super chlorination monthly, but it will be not effective enough to help you get rid of algae. In order to clean up algae in your pool, you have to use the conventional shock which is considered as the best pool cleaner and shock your pool weekly.
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Keep Those Swamp Monsters At Bay
If you thought you wouldnt have any water problems with a salt water pool, youre not alone. Unfortunately, despite the many positive aspects of salt water pool ownership, theyre not naturally resistant to algae.
Now that youre armed with the best methods for killing that algae, act swiftly to stop it in its tracks. Keep it from coming back with algaecide and good prevention practices, and you wont have to worry about those swamp monsters ruining your backyard fun.
Test And Adjust Ph Levels
An ideal pH level is necessary to enable chlorine to function effectively and kill harmful bacteria. Ideally, the recommended levels for pH should be between 7.2 and 7.6, with the most ideal or optimal level of 7.4.
High pH levels in a saltwater pool lead to the formation of calcium buildups and you need to measure your pH regularly to avoid white flakes or calcium scaling.
- To reduce pH levels: Use muriatic acid or a dry acid such as sodium bisulphate.
- To increase pH: Use alkali such as soda ash. Ensure that you add these substances slowly in increments and allow the water to circulate for 4-6 hours before swimming.
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Maintaining Proper Pool Circulation
The first part of maintaining a saltwater pool is ensuring proper pool circulation. If the water doesnt circulate properly, the saltwater concentration could keep going up in specific areas. This is the main reason why irregularly-shaped pools rarely have salt chlorine generators. Its possible to make them work, but it requires expert planning and additional circulation devices.
Fortunately, maintaining proper pool circulation is relatively easy in most pools. All you really need to do is check to see whether or not all of the water in your pool can rotate through your filters. As long as all of the water turns at a reasonable pace, you should be good to go.
You can use several different devices to check your pool circulation. Many pool owners prefer using salt concentration detectors in various areas. If the numbers are similar throughout your pool, you know youre fine. If the numbers are distinctly different, you may need to change the angles on your jets.
Winterizing Your Salt Chlorinator
All salt water units are different, so keep this in mind when you’re winterizing it.
Some manufacturers say you must drain all the water out and some say its okay to leave a little water in with some antifreeze.
But if your unit is easily removable, its usually best to detach it and store it inside out of the winter elements. Just be sure to follow the instructions for your particular unit.
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Quick Guide: How To Clean A Chlorine Generator Cell
Note: An expired salt cell might be the problem. The average lifespan of a salt cell is three to five years in most SWCGs, after which you need to replace the old cell with a new one that will produce sufficient chlorine.
Weekly Salt Water Pool Maintenance
Your weekly salt water pool maintenance routine will depend on pool usage and environmental factors. In addition to spot cleaning with a skimmer net, vacuuming and emptying the pool pump basket the most common thing you’ll need to do is balance the water chemistry. A pool app designed for use on a smartphone is a great companion for pool owner’s that want to keep their pool chemistry in check all season long.
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Testing Kit We Recommend
A good test kit for salt water pools should be able to test chlorine, pH, alkalinity, calcium hardness and stabilizer .
Here’s what we recommend:
This kit from Taylor Technologies will test everything you need in order to keep your salt water pool chemistry balanced.
All their kits come with thorough instructions so they take all the guesswork out of testing your pool.
A List Of Useful Things
How To Clear Up A Cloudy Saltwater Pool? First of all, let me share with you a list of items that you may or may not need when following this tutorial. Im going to be covering two different strategies in this walkthrough.
One of which is using a pool clarifier and the other is using a pool flocculant or flocking your swimming pool. Here is the list of things youll need. I have included brackets after the item showing which method it is needed for.
- Pool clarifier
- Skimmer net
- Flocculant or pool floc
- A pool vacuum
Lets get down to business! Follow the steps to either one of these tutorials and watch your pool go from cloudy mess to glimmering perfection overnight!
Lets start things off with the more simple of the two, shall we?
Using A Pool Clarifier
Using a pool clarifier is a crucial part of maintaining the beautiful appearance of your precious pool.
It works by gathering up the tiny particles that are making your pool cloudy and then binds them together so that they become larger in size.
This means that now, your filter can pick them up, leaving you with an incredibly un-cloudy pool. And heres how to do it:
Step #1: Check water chemistry in your pool
Before you do anything, your first concern should be making sure that your water chemistry is in check. Chemical imbalances in your pools water could result in cloudiness and if this is the cause of your problem, then using a pool clarifier isnt the solution.
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How To Clear And Fix A Cloudy Salt Water Pool Fast
How To Clear Up A Cloudy Saltwater Pool? Dont worry. I feel your pain having been there myself. But, I also know what it feels like to return your pool to its original beauty.
And more importantly, I know how to return your pool to its original beauty. Its not going to be easy, but trust me when I say its going to be worth it.
Not only are they a vicious eyesore, but cloudy swimming pools are also highly irritating both physically and also mentally .
There are many causes as to why your pool is cloudy. Whether it be due to the environment things around that pollute your pool: birds, trees, rain, pollen, sun etc. or because of a faulty filter/misused filter or even because of chemical imbalances in your pools water, the cause of your pools cloudiness may not be so obvious.
But one thing is for certain:
Your pool is cloudy. And as Im sure youre already aware, it can be incredibly difficult to return your pool back to its gleamingly clean state that it once maintained. Almost impossible even. That is, until now.
In this article, I will be providing you with a step-by-step, easy-to-follow walkthrough of how to un-cloud your pool, giving you a number of various strategies to try out.
Are you ready to see your pool gleam under the sunlight again? Are you? Then follow me!
The Advanced Dolphin E 40i
Perhaps the most important feature for any type of pool is having a programmable robotic cleaner. The Dolphin E 40i is an advanced, highly-controllable and programmable robotic cleaner. The cleaner can be set to work on a weekly timer so you dont have to worry about your pools cleaning maintenance.
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How To Clean A Salt Water Pool
For any house, a swimming pool is always a fun place for all the family members to hang out in the hot sunny climatic conditions. Apart from traditional pools, saltwater pools are now preferred as they are best for skin and hair and easy to maintain. Saltwater pools have many benefits, which include softer water and less maintenance. Read on to learn about the maintenance and how to clean a salt water pool to enjoy the pool for a long time.
What Our Customers Are Saying
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Pool Customer,Google Review
Sahara Construction Pools team did an outstanding job on my pool and outdoor kitchen that I couldnt be more happy with. I loved the amazing results! From design to construction everything was a smooth process. The Sahara team was very friendly and professional to work with. Chris did a fabulous job managing the project. I highly recommend Sahara Construction Pools for any pool projects.
Pool & Outdoor Kitchen Customer,Google Review
Sahara completed construction of our pool recently and we are very pleased. The pool turned out beautiful! The builders were very professional, experienced, and easy to communicate with. Even with additions to original plans, they still came in under budget. Many things could have gone horribly wrong as they dug it prior to the two hurricanes we had this summer but they seemed to have a plan for each possible pit falls. Very impressed.
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Keep The Salt Cell Clean
Your salt chlorinators manual will explain how to clean the salt cell. This is one of the most important parts of maintaining a salt water pool because if its not clean, then your pool will not create the amount of chlorine necessary to keep it clean. Check the cell regularly for calcium buildup and clean it out.
Double Triple Or Quadruple Shock
Use the dosing chart on your shock to determine the recommended dose for your pool size, and then adjust the treatment depending on the type of algae in your salt water pool:
Just a little green algae: Double the usual shock treatment.A lot of dark green algae: Triple shock.Mustard algae: This stuff can withstand a lot of chlorine, so triple shock to kill it all the way dead.Black algae: This ones really hard to kill. Quadruple shock.Pink slime: Remember, its bacteria, not really algae, so treat it like youd treat any bacterial problem: quadruple shock.
Note: Use calcium hypochlorite shock to safely shock the algae in your salt water pool into oblivion without adding unnecessary chemicals to the water.
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