15 Mar 2012

Keeping Your Pool Water Crystal Clear

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Unfortunately, there is no magic pill, chemical or any other way to turn a swampy green or black pool clear over night! It usually takes a lot of time, work and money to clear up a typical “swampy” green/black pool.

It is certainly best if you never let your pool water get this dirty in the first place. The cost of chemicals and extra labor to clear up a dirty pool often far exceeds the cost to keep it properly maintained year round.

Here are 10 steps to try to clear up a green, black or very dirty pool in the shortest time possible.

Follow these 10 steps to turn your green pool water clear:

  1. Manually remove all the large debris from the pool with a large leaf net. This will stir up the water and may make your pool look much worse temporarily, but the stirred up smaller debris will settle within a few hours.
  2. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO VACUUM THE POOL IF YOU CANNOT SEE THE BOTTOM OR IF YOU HAVE A LOT OF DEBRIS ON THE BOTTOM.  THAT MAY CLOG YOUR SKIMMER, FILTER and UNDERGROUND PIPES!
  3. Adjust the pH and Alkalinity levels of the water. These levels must be within the proper ranges or the water will never clear.
  4. Shock the pool. This means super chlorinating the water to kill off any bacteria and algae. If your pool is very dirty, it may need many, MANY pounds of granular shock over a period of days before the water clears. Start off by adding 3 or 4 pounds per 10,000 gallons of pool water, and if you see no results overnight, add 3 or 4 more pounds the next day. Continue this process until you notice the water changing color to either cloudy white, light green or clear. YOU CANNOT OVER SHOCK A POOL! The more you add, the quicker it will clear! We recommend using granule shock treatment.
  5. You may also want to add a high quality algaecide to the water at this point. DO NOT USE COPPER or SILVER algaecides. You can severely stain your pool finish. This chemical is best left to the use by professionals only.
  6. Add a chemical Super-floc and follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the label. Some have you run the pump for two hours after treatment and than shut down the pump for 24 hours. The Super-floc will coagulate the fine particles suspended in the water into larger pieces and they will drop to the pool floor while the pump is shut down.
  7. Than run your filter 24 hours a day and backwash or clean the filters 3 or 4 times a day for quickest results. Green or cloudy water will quickly clog a filter therefore you may have to backwash your filter many times a day until the pool clears. THIS IS NORMAL! Remember, you cannot over-backwash a pool filter. The more you run your pool, and the more you backwash the filter, the faster the pool will clear up. If you have a D.E. filter, remember to add new D.E. to the skimmer closest to your filter after each backwashing. A D.E. filter will clear a green pool about 75-90 % faster than a sand filter.  A cartridge filter will clear it 35-50 % faster than a sand filter.
  8. If you follow these instructions and your pool does not clear up within 7-10 days, your filter may not be functioning properly. If this is the case with your pool, have the filter system checked out by a professional pool company. The pool will never clear up if the filter is not working properly!
  9. Once the water does clear up, you will most probably see debris on the pool floor (more dead leaves, algae, dirt, etc.). If there is only a small amount of debris present, you may want to vacuum it up using your own pool vacuum system. If there is a lot of debris on the pool floor, you should have the pool professionally POWER VACUUMED directly to waste and not through your filter. This will save a lot of wear and tear to your filter system, as well as assuring that no debris gets clogged in your pool pipes or pump impeller.
  10. If the pool still does not clear, dilution is a good option. DO NOT DRAIN the pool COMPLETELY. It may come out of the ground.  Lower the water 2-3 feet and add fresh water to raise it back to the normal level. When full, run the pump 24 hours. You may need to dilute again if you are not making progress.
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