It can happen seemingly overnight. One fine, sunny Arizona morning you step outside for a swim and, yikes! It is definitely unnerving to find that your lovely, crystal clear pool has suddenly begun to look like a science experiment. Or maybe you took off your pool’s winter cover to find a nasty green mess underneath it? Everyone at some point will wind up with a green swimming pool. It is generally caused by an overgrowth of algae and is unhealthy to swim in, but don’t worry, with plenty of chemicals and pool cleaning your swimming pool will soon be looking great again. It won’t happen overnight, but give it a few days.
You will need pool cleaning supplies, such as a leaf net, a pool brush, a pool vacuum, and plenty of chlorine and algaecide. First, using the net remove any large debris, then scrub the sides of the pool with the pool brush to remove the algae. Go on to scrub the floor and steps thoroughly. Don’t forget behind the ladder.
The next step is to shock your pool to kill off the algae and bacteria. You will need to add more shock than you generally use for regular pool maintenance. If you cannot see through the water at all you may need to use up to six times as much shock as recommended. You will need several gallons of shock and it may take several days before the water begins to clear. Continue adding several gallons of shock each day until the water begins to clear. The more you add the more quickly the water will clear. Shock can be purchased in liquid or powder form, but liquid seems to works more quickly. Now is a good time to add the algaecide to the water, too. Using either shock or algaecide alone will not be enough to get rid of the green.
Run the filter constantly and backwash several times a day for best results. Green water will quickly clog the filter, so be sure to backwash your filter many times a day until the pool clears. The more you run the filter, and the more you backwash the filter, the more quickly the water will clear up.
You will also need to adjust the pH and alkalinity levels of the water using the appropriate chemicals. These levels must be within the proper ranges or the water will not clear.
If after 5-7 days your pool water is still not clear there may be a problem with your filter. If this is the case you will need to have the filter system looked at by a professional.
Once the water does clear up, you will probably see debris on the floor of the pool. Do not vacuum the pool if you cannot see the bottom or if there are large debris. If there is only a small amount of debris you may want to vacuum it up yourself using your own pool vacuum system. If there are large amounts of debris on the pool floor, you may wish to have the pool vacuumed by a pool maintenance professional rather than chance damaging your filter system or clogging your pool pipes.
When your swimming pool is once again pristine and inviting, be sure that the pump timer of your pool is set to run properly. Monitor the pool condition closely to ascertain if the filter is running enough to keep the water clear. If there is more swimming than usual you may need to run the filter more than usual.
Now to maintain that clean pool and prevent any more green water, check the chlorine levels regularly, clean the sides, vacuum the bottom, and backwash the filter every few weeks, depending on the amount of use your pool receives.
If the initial cleaning of the icky green algae, or the regular cleaning involved in keeping your pool sparkling and enjoyable are more than you have the time for you can always employ a professional pool maintenance service.
In Arizona, there are more hot, sunny days to enjoy your swimming pool than most any other place. Don’t let green water rob you of that pool time.