What Causes Pool Algae To Occur
Algae are living organisms that grow, perfectly naturally, in any number of aquatic environments such as rivers, streams, ponds, lakes, and oceans. Or in your neighbours swimming pool.
They are also commercially farmed as a health supplement and, increasingly, for biodiesel fuel.
The algae spores are produced by algae that has dried out and been born by the wind or the rain and deposited in your pool.
The spores can also be introduced by un-properly washed swimsuits, un-rinsed off lilos, etc. This is especially the case for black algae which occurs naturally in the ocean.
The point is that your pool is under constant bombardment from both spores and bacteria.
Once in the water, all they need to do is wait around long enough until the conditions are right for them to bloom.
So, what are the right conditions? They include:
A Test And Balance Your Pool Water
Before you can start scrubbing and forcing blisters on your hands, itd be best to make sure your pool water chemistry chemicals are at the ideal levels.
Get yourself either pool test strips, a liquid test kit, or a digital pool test kit. You want to ensure the pool water pH is between 7.4 and 7.6, alkalinity between 100ppm and 150ppm.
Dont worry much about the sanitizer levels as you will need to hyper-chlorinate the pool during pool shocking the next step here.
What Causes Green Streaks In My Pool
In chlorine pools, algae grows when chlorine is low, and pH has drifted away from neutral. In a salt-water pool, algae can get a foothold if the salt level is low or if the system has a hiccup. Algae prefers hot weather and stagnant water, so if your pool goes unused for a period of time during the summer, you may come back to find an algae invasion. Keep in mind that the hot sun will burn off the effective chlorine in the water, so while you may think youre putting in the right amount to stay in balance, your pools composition may have slipped below the critical point.
Green algae is the most common kind of algae seen in pools, and it can spread and grow extremely quickly once inside a pool. The Pool Stain Removers explains that green algae can build up on the walls and floor of a pool, making the surfaces feel slimy. It also floats in water, making the whole pool look cloudy and green.
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How To Prevent Excess Algae Growth
Ensuring your pool has algae-free water all year long allows you and your guests to feel comfortable swimming in the water. Reducing the number of phosphates, managing calcium levels, and maintaining a pH level of 7.2 to 7.6 reduce algae growth.
Another simple way to prevent algae is to check on the sanitizer levels and keeping them between one and four ppm. Chlorine helps to kill algae. To prevent chlorine loss, chemicals like cyanuric acid act as a clarifier for a green pool.
Two quick and easy ways to avoid algae growth are brushing your pool and applying an algaecide every week. Even when you take preventative measures, realize that algae growth may still occur.
How To Remove Dead Algae From Your Pool
There are solutions to eradicate algae from your pool.
You should be aware that if the algae is still green, its not dead yet. Additionally, some pool owners use these methods and discover more dead algae the day after cleaning.
If any of those are your case, the pool still has algae in it and it will just keep coming back. Youll need to shock the pool , to make sure every single microorganism is obliterated.
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Why Do I Have A Green Pool
When your pool water turns from a lovely shade of blue to a sickly green, theres only one reason: pool algae. If its a light shade of green, the algae has probably just started to take hold. But a deeper green means a bigger problem.
Algae develops when the pools sanitizer levels are too low. If you havent been keeping up with pool water testing and water balancing, or youre not adding enough chlorine, bromine, or whatever type of sanitizer you use, youre practically laying out the welcome mat for algae to come in and make itself at home.
Before we dive in, if you want to stop your pool from turning green ever again, invest in our pool care video course. Youll learn how to keep your pool chemistry in check so you never have to fight a green pool ever again.
How Do I Remove Algae Stains
Its worth checking for other kinds of algae frequently while using the pool. Yellow or mustard algae can grow in a shaded corner of the pool and is resistant to normal chlorine levels, explains River Pools. Black spot algae is even tougher to kill and can cause permanent damage to the underwater surfaces of your pool. It can be hard to spot and is resistant to chlorine. You may also see pink slime, which is caused by bacteria rather than algae and often grows inside polyvinyl chloride, or PVC, piping.
Your first step in getting rid of nasty algae is to correct and clean the pool. First, correct it by doing your testing to determine the pH, level of chlorine, and stabilizer or other important chemicals. What you test depends on the chemical system your pool uses you should know what components are important and how they work together so that you can test appropriately.
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How To Eradicate Algae
The best way to kill algae in your pool involves several steps. The process is generally the same for all types of pool algae. Well cover the process of how to get rid of algae in your swimming pool, then answer some frequently asked questions.
Manually vacuum your pool Automatic pool cleaners dont detect where algae have built up. Also, they usually cant access hard to reach areas where green pool algae like to hide. Manually vacuuming your pool allows you to clean algae from your pool and pay special attention to areas built up with pool algae.
Brushing the floor and walls of your pool Scrubbing the algae off the structure of your pool allows your sanitizers and chemical shock to kill algae in your pool effectively. In scrubbing off the pool algae, it can then get picked up and filtered out. Using a stiff-bristled brush will allow you to scrub off tough stains like ones formed from black pool algae.
Test and balance your water Testing your pools pH balance and alkalinity will indicate what the water needs to regain balance. A proper pH balance allows your sanitizer to work effectively against the algae. In contrast, a high pH or low alkalinity inhibits the effect of any shock treatment.
Retest the water Once youve completed a chemical treatment to get algae out of your pool, test the water again. Testing for pH balance and alkalinity ensures the chemicals maintain their effectiveness, which is the best way to get rid of green algae in your pool.
How To Remove Yellow Algae From A Swimming Pool
1. Clean the Pool. Brush every spot of algae off, using a quality pool brush with stiff nylon or stainless steel bristles will give you the best success. If you dont own at least one good pool brush, this may be why you have algae in the first place! Pools need to be brushed regularly, and for algae removal, the action of brushing is extremely important. Brushing removes it from the surface or exposes vulnerable layers of the algae, so that the chlorine can do its job. After brushing, vacuuming to waste, very slowly and carefully, all of the settled shock dust and dead algae cells. If you cannot vacuum to waste, vacuum into the filter, but do this before you have cleaned the filter . Very important to vacuum out all dead algae cells, which can regenerate if left in the pool.
2. Bleach everything. Use a solution of 1 gallon of bleach per 5 gallons of water. Use a trash can for larger items. Soak for 5 minutes, then flip over to soak the upper half. You can also soak your skimmer baskets and pump basket. If you have a pool cleaner, hoses, bags and other parts can also be bleach soaked for several minutes. Yellow algae likes to find a home underneath hose floats especially. Anything that goes into the pool could be contaminated. Floats, Noodles, Balls, maybe even you! Give everything a good bleaching, even your cleaning tools.
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Clean Your Pool Filter
Next, youll want to clean your pool filter to remove any black algae. This will help reduce the likelihood that the pool system will reinfect the water. If the problem is extensive, you might want to replace the filter altogether. With smaller problems, you can often get away with cleaning the filter with a filter-specific cleaner or by backwashing it.
What Is Pool Algae
Algae is a live plant organism you can find in your swimming pool. Pool algae can be various colors and cause the pool water to appear green, teal, yellow, brown, red, or even black.
You might also notice a cloudy look to your pool water, which is another tell-tale sign that you have an algae problem. Algae is sometimes free-floating and other times sticks to your pool walls or in cracks and crevices. Though it spreads rapidly, fortunately, it can be treated and prevented fairly easily with proper swimming pool maintenance.
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Test Your Pool Chemistry
Finally, its time to restore your pools chemistry back to normal.
Normal chlorine levels are ideally between 1 3 ppm, and normal pH levels are between 7.4 and 7.6. 7.5 and is considered perfect for algae prevention.
And alkalinity should be between 80 and 140 ppm.
> > Read: How to lower alkalinity in your pool
Treating Iron And Manganese Stains:
- Remove Chlorine and ensure pH is 7.2 to 7.6.
- Add 1 Kg of Lo-Chlor Multi Stain Remover, by sprinkling around the outside of the pool.
- Filter as normal.
- The stain should be gone within twelve hours. If in the unlikely event this does not remove all the stain, repeat with another 1 Kg.
- When the stain is gone, add 300mls of Lo-Chlor Metal Solution
- Run the filter for 12 24 hours
- Backwash or clean cartridges thoroughly
- Repeat this treatment of Lo-Chlor Metal Solution every 3 days until the bottle is empty
- Do not superchlorinate for 10 days after adding Metal solution, or the stain will return immediately.
- If the stain was severe it may be necessary, after stain removal, to adjust pH to 7.8 to 8.0 and add 1 Litre Lo-Chlor Maxi Floc Plus.
- Making the pool alkaline and then floccing will remove about 70% of the dissolved metals.
- Leave overnight and then vacuum to waste.
- Balance the water and then add 1 Litre of Lo-Chlor Metal Solution.
- For a salt water pool this treatment may need to be repeated every six months!
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Brush The Sides And Bottom Of The Pool
You then brush the sides and floor of the swimming pool to loosen up the algae and other types of debris stuck on the walls and the floor. The type of brush you use will depend on the material used to make the floor and sides of the pool. Hard materials such as plaster or concrete will need a tough stiff or wire brush while softer materials such as vinyl will need softer brushes.
When brushing the inside of the pool, brush all parts including the ladders, walls, corners, steps, the floor and any other parts covered by the water. You may also need to brush the parts next to the pool to prevent debris from getting inside it.
Using An Algaecide To Get Rid Of Brown Algae In The Pool
After you kill brown algae on pool walls by scrubbing and using shock treatment, its time to treat the water with an algaecide. Make sure to use a product designed for killing yellow or mustard algae.
Swimming Pool Algaecide
After you shock the pool and the chlorine level falls to 5 ppm, use an algaecide treatment. Follow the directions for your product and pour the recommended dose into the water in sections.
Make sure the pump is running during application to ensure the algaecide circulates through the water.
After you clean the pool of algae and balance the chemical levels, clean the pools filtration system a final time. Make sure to clean all pool toys with bleach and wash all swimsuits before allowing them back into the pool.
A swimming pool is an investment and a place for you and your family to relax and have fun on a sunny summer day.
While regular pool maintenance often keeps algae growth at bay, weather conditions cause havoc in the pool water. Fortunately, a thorough scrubbing, good shock treatment, and algaecide cure the problem.
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Tips On Keeping Algae Out Of Your Swimming Pool:
- Try to shock the pool with chlorine in late afternoon. You want to avoid shocking the pool in sunlight, as the ultraviolet rays quickly destroy the sanitation abilities of chlorine.
- For stubborn algae growths from black and mustard algae, you will have to brush by hand, then apply algaecide directly to the affected areas. For concrete pools, you can also request an acid wash from your local pool contractor. However, you want to minimize acid washes, as these are very hard on pool surfaces.
- Avoid attempting to pour granulated shock directly on algae growths on floors or steps. Vinyl pool patterns can easily be bleached white by shock allowed to sit on these surfaces for extended periods of time.
- Though this likely will not be the case for you, extreme cases of algae might require a pool drain and acid wash to ensure that the algae has been thoroughly and properly disposed of. This occurs only in extreme cases of black algae.
- Be patient. Sometimes algae takes several attempts to finally rid your pool of the problem.
- Once you are confident your pool algae problem is gone, commit to regular algae preventative maintenance to keep the algae from once again gaining a foothold in your swimming pool.
- Avoid keeping the pool uncovered on windy days when not using it, and promptly remove debris that has blown or fallen into the pool water. Both scenarios contribute greatly to giving algae a chance to overwhelm your pool water sanitation and begin growing in the water.
Black Spot Algae Stains
Black algae arent that common, and if it happens to grow, its mostly confused with other matter such as dirt or mold. If it was to grow in your swimming pool, it could leave black spot algae on your pool walls. It spreads relatively slowly and appears as spots on the surfaces.
The bad news is, this type of stains can be challenging, considering black algae spores can penetrate even cement. If you dont act quickly, you will be facing permanent damage and discoloration of your pool interior.
You should also know the cause of the black spot stains black spot algae develop a protective layer on their surface, making them resistant to the sanitizer. Removing these stains is for sure challenging but doable.
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S On How To Remove Algae From Pool Walls
Maintaining a pool in excellent condition could be expensive if you dont give it the proper care at the correct date and time.
Algae is a living plant organism that can appear in your pool overnight and result in clogged filters and poor water circulation. It can also make your pool chemical less effective.
Moreover, algae flourish in pools full of debris and dirty water. Heavy rain, high heat, or low chlorine levels can all make matters worse. Thats why well show you which are the proper measures to take on treating musty green water in your pool due to mold.
These are the main steps to take on how to remove algae from pool walls:
- Use a pool water test kit to check its chemical levels.
- Shock your pool to kill algae spores in the water.
- Brush surfaces and the bottom of the pool.
- Finish off by vacuuming your pool.
Filter Out The Pool Algae
When your shock treatment kills the algae, itll turn your water a cloudy blue. Run your filter continuously for a minimum of eight hours until the water clears up.
You may add pool water clarifier to speed up the process. Be sure to check whether you need to top off your water before turning on the pump.
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Install A Fibreglass Pool
Installing a fibreglass pool could be a viable option to help you avoid a lot of the work that comes with an algae bloom or algae growth. Fibreglass resists algae growth, and the smooth surface makes it difficult for algae to take hold. If you choose to install a fibreglass pool from Compass Pools Melbourne, be sure to ask about the Vantage Self-Cleaning System. This system continually circulates the water, and reduces the amount of chemicals you have to use.
It does need the same water balance to work well, but youll use fewer chemicals to achieve that balance. The Vantage System removes any dead spots in the pool where algae can thrive, and you get clean and clear water to swim in.