Nothing is more embarrassing than having friends and family over for a swim on a hot summer day, only to find that your pool water looks a ghoulish green instead of the crystal clear water it’s supposed to be. Algae in a pool can be a problem that plaques some pool owners and can cause you to avoid quality time enjoying your large investment.
Identifying Your Algae
While green water is a tried and true sign that your pool is being taken over by this organism, different types of algae can actually turn your water different colors. For that reason you want to be sure to identify the type of algae that you have so that you can best work to fight it.
- Green Algae – When we think of algae, this is typically the type that we are associating our pool with, as it is the most common form and can turn water a greenish colour. Those pools that do not have an adequate filter and are not properly cleaned often develop this type of organism which can either float freely throughout the water or stick to the walls and bottom of your pool. Fortunately, even though this type of algae is the most common it is also the easiest to remove and treat.
- Mustard Algae – A second type of algae that pool owners might encounter is known as mustard algae, or yellow algae, which is likely to invade your pool in areas that are not exposed to sunlight. While this algae is common, it is much more difficult to get rid of than green algae as more than just chlorine is needed to keep this algae away.
- Black Algae – Though rare, black algae is certainly the most difficult type of organism to deal with for a pool owner. Looking just like black spotted patches in your pool, this organism is deeply rooted into the walls of pools and treating it is no simply task. A heavy duty pool brush and shock treatments are absolutely necessary to get the job done.
Recognizing the type of algae that your pool has is important in order to identify the right type of treatment for your pool woes.
Treating Algae in Your Pool
Different types of algae can affect even the seemingly cleanest of pools, giving you a serious headache. But, instead of writing off your time in the water, you might want to try one of three tried and true ways to get rid of algae in your pool once and for all.
- Shock treatments (Superchlorination) – Superchlorination, or shock treatment, is the most common means to treat organisms that plague pools, including all amounts of algae. Depending on the degree of your problem you will have to shock your pool multiple times in order to truly eradicate the problem. Shock treatments are sold in pool supply stores or online and are rather easy to use if you know the capacity of your pool.
- Floc (Flocculant) – Flocculant chemicals are similar to shock treatments, however it causes all the algae and particles of the pool to settle at the bottom so they can be vacuumed up easily. While this method does require some work on the part of the pool owner, typically one floc treatment will clear up your algae problem. A good robotic pool cleaner can do a nice job cleaning up after you deploy Floc chemicals in your pool.
- Algaecide – Algaecide, contrary to the suggestion of the name, is actually not used exclusively to treat algae. In fact, this chemical works as a preventative when coupled with metals to kill and stop algae from developing. Keep in mind, when purchasing algaecide that it should be used as a regular maintenance treatment for your pool, not necessarily an algae killer, and that not all algaecides can kill algae.
Depending on the algae situation that you are facing, the type of organism and the rate at which you would like to have it cleared up, your treatment method will vary. Shock treatments might take longer to work on some algae problems, yet this is the most affordable means to treat most common problems you will see. The one thing you don’t want to do is to presume that your algae problem will simply go away, because this will simply make your problem worse and make it more expensive to treat in the long run.
Have questions about choosing the right chemicals to treat your swimming pool? Contact us here, we're happy to answer any questions!