Balancing Your Water Chemistry
Green pools can happen all year round and you can find them in vacant homes, residential swimming pools, commercial swimming pools, or in any pool that doesn’t have balanced water chemistry or is not properly maintained. This is an important issue to tackle so we hope this blog post gives you a better understanding of why green pools happen and what needs to happen to get them blue again! Typically, you will see a direct correlation to algae in pools due to a lack of chlorine or poor filtration/circulation. Whenever you have warm water, algae loves to grow and if you don’t have the proper amount of chlorine in the water, it will grow rapidly! The same goes for filtration if you’re not filtering your swimming pool long enough your chances for algae growth increase. The following are other factors that could cause algae to grow:
- High levels of phosphates and nitrates
- High levels of Cyanuric Acid (CYA)
Phosphates come from vegetation, soils, and fertilizers which are food for algae. When phosphate levels increase in the swimming pool they must be removed because no matter how much chlorine you use, algae will still spread due to phosphates. Typically, with high phosphates, you will need to purchase a phosphate remover if all your other chemistry levels are within normal ranges. Please note, if you use a phosphate remover, only use what is recommended as using more doesn’t make it go away quicker. Other factors could be high CYA levels. CYA helps reduce chlorine loss by protecting the free chlorine in the pool from the sun’s ultraviolet rays, reducing the amount of chlorine needed to maintain proper sanitizer levels. When these levels get too high, it lessens the effectiveness of chlorine to act as a disinfectant. Higher levels will bind with the chlorine, making it slower acting to kill bacteria and micro-organisms, and prevent algae from growing! This typically occurs because chlorine tabs have CYA/stabilizer in them.
The Best Way To Treat Algae
When you’ve determined where the growth is coming from, Weber Pools recommends the following steps to help remove the algae:
- Identify the type of algae (black, yellow, or green)
- Check chlorine, pH, and phosphate levels
- Check all pool equipment for leaks and air that can prevent proper filtration.
- Check run times for your filter equipment. You should be filtering for a minimum of 10 hours during the summertime.
- Brush, skim, and empty skimmer and pump baskets.
If any of the above is the issue, the addition of more chlorine or increasing your filter run times should help. Remember you will need to shock your pool to increase your Free Chlorine (FC) levels and filter your pool until it clears up. Utilizing the Pool Calculator can also be beneficial when trying to balance your water chemistry. Monitor your CYA levels because if they are high it is much harder to get a high FC level. This is extremely common and something we can help you with. If you’re dealing with high CYA levels or calcium levels then a water change is necessary.