Generally, maintaining a healthy pH of pool chemicals will keep your swimming pool from becoming an algae habitat. However, sometimes you’ll find yourself facing a pool green with algae growth and other unpleasant surprises. Whether you’re restoring an abandoned pool or simply forgot to perform regular maintenance, you’ll need to clean this green swimming pool thoroughly before it’s safe or pleasant to use again.
Steps to a Clear Pool
The most important part of cleaning a green swimming pool is killing the algae and removing all traces of it from your pool. While there are several ways to do this, the most effective is vacuum residue out of the pool, brush the algae off, and use a special combination of pool chemicals to make sure it’s all dead. This tried-and-true method will keep your pool fresh for the foreseeable future as long as you keep up with the maintenance. Here’s what you’ll need to do:
- Vacuum the pool
- Scrub the pool shell
- Shock the water
- Filter the pool
- Test and balance the chemicals
1) Vacuum the Pool
Start by running your pool vacuum across the entire bottom of the pool. Remove as much dirt and residue as possible this way before proceeding. Don’t try to suck up the algae–it still needs to be in the pool so you can kill it with the shock later. For now, just target dirt, leaves, twigs, dead bugs, and other debris.
2) Scrub the Pool Shell
With a stiff algae brush, scrub the entire pool shell vigorously to dislodge the algae. This will make killing the growth much easier. Just make sure you use a heavy-duty brush for this part since a soft brush won’t really do much other than just shove the algae around.
3) Shock the Water
Now comes the step where you kill the algae: shock your pool. Using a pool shock that contains a high level of chlorine, shock your pool at least twice. The darker green your pool water is, the more times you should shock it to get every last remnant of the algae.
Pro Tip: Even if you don’t normally use chlorine shock, you must use chlorine to kill algae growth in this case. Other shocks only do a temporary job.
4) Filter the Pool
After you’re satisfied that your pool has been shocked enough, turn on the filter and leave it running constantly until the pool is crystal clear. This will take several days at the very least. Just be patient and keep a close eye on the pool to ensure it’s actually improving. You can add pool clarifier to help the water grow clear faster, but even then, you must continue running the filter for at least 24 hours after adding the clarifier.
5) Test & Balance the Chemicals
Once your pool is clear again, test the pH and sanitizer levels. After all, the cocktail of chemicals you added during the cleaning process probably imbalanced a few things. Add more chemicals as necessary to restore your pool’s original condition. Once you’re satisfied with the rest results, you can start using your pool again!
Restoring a Green Swimming Pool
Regardless of how your swimming pool turned green and disgusting, you’ll want to get it clean as quickly as possible. Fortunately, with a little care and dedicated time, you can restore your pool to its former glory and keep the algae from ever returning. Keep your pool pleasant and safe for everyone to enjoy!
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