Yes, they’re one of the oldest forms of life still around, but that doesn’t make them any nicer to have around. Those green algae in your pool are slimy, smelly and unhealthy. They’re also a sign of something potentially wrong in how you take care of your pool.
What to Do about the Green Algae in Your Pool
Let’s be honest, now: everyone’s had them at one point or another. The question is, how much should you wait until you take decisive action?
The answer is, not at all. While it’s relatively easy to get rid of the green algae, they can be extremely intrusive and unpleasant – and the more you wait, the more you’ll have to work to have a clean pool once again.
Algae are everywhere and are crazy-quick to spread across wet or humid surfaces. There is little you can do except prevention. And when your pool is teeming with algae, it’s always because of something you did – or rather, didn’t do.
Green algae are not just one kind. Even their shape and basic biology differs within the same division, called Chlorophyta. But they all respond to the same stimuli and thrive pretty much in the same kinds of environment.
Understand Why They’ve Appeared
It’s not them, it’s you! When you wonder why you’ve got green algae in your pool, look for three main culprits:
- Bad filters: any kind of debris, from accumulated dirt to leaves and sticks, can clog your filter and cause pool water to go bad without proper controls in place.
- Low chlorine levels: pools with less than 1 parts per million chlorine allow algae to spread. Water chemistry should be tested on a regular basis.
- pH levels are off: water that is too acid or too alkaline is bad for the mucous membranes, eyes, visibility, as well as your pool equipment. In combination with low chlorine levels, it creates an environment that not only allows the green algae to thrive and ruin your water but also ruins your pump and heater.
How to Get Rid of the Green Algae in Your Pool
Count yourself lucky! The green kind is the easiest algae to get rid of, and it is also an easily preventable problem. Just follow these few easy steps:
- Check the filters. Make sure everything is in working order before you start cleaning the pool! Getting rid of the green algae in your swimming pool will involve some extra work from your filter, so you’d best make sure it’s up to it.
- Check the pH balance. Look for a pH level of 7.2 to 7.6, which is the level in the human eyes. Check the chlorine levels. Chlorine levels should be between 1 and 3, but aim for 2.5 or so – anything under 1 ppm (parts per million) allows algae to bloom and take over.
- Remove algae from all visible places. That’s going to be a lot of brushing and scrubbing, but don’t worry about every tiny speck. Once chemistry does its magic, so to speak, they’ll die off.
- Shock the pool! By now you must be familiar with the term. Pool shock around 70% chlorine will kill the algae and bacteria.
- … and do it again. If the infestation was bad enough, you may want to repeat the shock treatment.
- Clean the filter! Don’t forget this essential step. As algae-filled water runs through it, some will get stuck in there. Sure, you will clean the pool – after all, the debris will be clearly visible. But don’t forget to give your filter a scrub, as well.
The final lesson is easy: From now on, take better care of water chemistry. Check the levels often, clean the debris and set up a regular pool maintenance schedule. This will prevent all sorts of problems, from being grossed out by the green algae in your pool to having to deal with equipment failure or health issues. And prevention is always easier than dealing with the consequences.
Or, you know, you can always contact a professional. Are we your neighbor in the Tampa Bay area? Drop us a line and we’ll take over your pool maintenance problems: low prices, high standards, expert care.
Be sure to check out the rest of our blogs in this 5 part Pool Algae Series.
How To Get Rid Of The Algae In Your Pool: Part 1 The Basics
How To Get Rid Of The Black Algae In Your Pool: Part 3
How To Get Rid Of The Yellow Algae In Your Pool: Part 4
How To Get Rid Of The Pink Algae In Your Pool: Part 5