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How To Clear Cloudy Pool Water & More Common Issues

For many homeowners, having a pool is a great convenience and fun addition to their property. It can be central to a fitness routine, outdoor socializing and family fun time. However, a great number of homeowners are concerned about pool water problems and worry about diagnosing any issues which may arise with their pool.

Many pool water problems can be easily diagnosed by observing the symptoms in your pool. Here are eight common pool water problems and their causes.

Green and Cloudy Pool Water

Green, cloudy pool water is usually caused by algae. This is one of the most visibly obvious pool water problems and by itself is not necessarily dangerous. However, algae convert sunlight into food material which encourages growth of bacteria and micro-organisms. There are in excess of 20,000 known species of algae, but only a few will be seen in a swimming pool. Algae are consistently entering your pool but will only begin to multiply if the sanitizer level drops below optimum. On a warm and sunny day, a clean pool can develop an algae problem within a matter of hours.

Brown and Cloudy Pool Water

Brown, cloudy pool water is usually caused by sand, dust, or other contaminants. However, it can also indicate a problem with the chemistry of the pool water. This can not only be uninviting for swimmers but can actually be dangerous to the health of anyone using the pool. To establish the underlying cause of brown, cloudy water, you need to check the chemical levels of your pool water including the PH, chlorine, calcium and alkalinity levels.

Black Spots in Pool

Black spots in your pool are usually caused by black algae. Generally, this can be a little tricky to eliminate. You will need to shock your pool and give it a thorough cleaning with a brush and vacuum. It will also require treatment with a specialist algaecide optimized for black algae.

Pink Slime in Pool

This is generally caused by what is referred to as pink algae. This is slightly deceiving, as pink algae is not actually an alga but a fungus. Paecilomyces lilacinus is a fungus which affects pool water and can cause pink, grey or white slimy colonies. You will need to utilize a specialist algaecide and follow the specific instructions of the product.

Clear Brown or Green Pool Water

Pool water that appears clear but brown or green in color is often caused by the presence of excess levels of iron or copper in the water. These can cause discoloration and may stain pool surfaces or swimmers’ hair and nails. The metals in your pool water may be the result of contamination of your fill water or corrosion of metal pool accessories such as the pipework, heater or pump.

Clear Black or Dark Pool Water

Dark pool water may be caused by high levels of manganese in the fill water. This can cause discoloration of the water to a dark blue, purple or black clear color. This can stain the surfaces of the pool with black or purple marks, which can be very unsightly. Mains water contains extremely low levels of manganese, but it can be a problem in wells and water sources near plants which are processing manganese. This can be corrected with regular use of an ion stabilizer or commercial metal on the product.

Milky Cloudy Pool Water

This can be caused by high levels of conditioner, TDS, water hardness or a bunch of swimmer waste or bather load. Generally after parties or when a lot of kids are in the pool, the water will become cloudy due to a high level of ammonia in the water. This can be treated with a non-chlorine shock also known as an oxidizer, freeing the contaminants from the water, also working as a clarifier.

Pool Water Burning Throat or Eyes

If burning or stinging is affecting you after using your pool, there’s likely a problem with the alkalinity of your pool water. Alternatively, it may be due to a high amount of acid in pool water; the pool is too acidic. Check your pool water’s PH level and correct the balance.

At Emerald Pools & Spas, we are experts in all aspects of pool maintenance including diagnosis of pool water problems. We would be delighted to assist you. If you are interested in learning more about dealing with common pool water problems, contact us!

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