Sometimes referred to as pink slime, pink algae are actually not an algae at all – it’s a bacteria. Its color comes from pigments within its cells, and the slime that forms around the bacteria is a mechanism to protect it from external threats. It is a naturally occurring problem and can grow wherever there is water, which includes swimming pools. Pink algae in your pool can manifest as reddish or pink streaks, and it usually grows alongside white water mold. It’s prone to growing on PVC materials, of which pool materials are often made from. This type of alga loves to grow in areas of the swimming pool that don’t receive direct sunlight, and that have minimal water movement.
Why Do I Have Pink Algae In My Swimming Pool?
Pink algae in pools forms as a slimy pink or clear layer over the pool’s surface and fixtures, and while there is not one determined cause, it’s most often the result of improper water and pool maintenance and poor water circulation. Exposure to direct sunlight is another factor, and pools that get less than 6 hours of direct sunlight per day seem to be more prone to developing this substance. Rainwater that enters your pool can also contribute to an infestation of pink algae in your swimming pool.
While treating your pool with chlorine and bromine helps kills other types of germs and bacteria, pink algae are very resistant to those chemicals. So despite regular maintenance and chemical treatment, pink algae can still develop in your pool. Even after treatment, the chance of re-contamination is high since it can remain and survive on items like pool toys, skimmer baskets, fountains and even garden hoses.
Is Pink Algae Dangerous?
The good news is, while pink algae are unsightly and a nuisance, it doesn’t pose an actual danger to your health. Pink algae are not a pathogen, which means if you have pink algae in your pool it will not be harmful to human health. However, having slippery pool fixtures can contribute to accidents, so getting rid of pink algae are vital to maintaining the overall safety of your pool.
How To Get Rid Of Pink Algae In Your Pool
As is the case with most algae, prevention is the best method and maintaining your pool’s chemical balance is your most potent weapon against pink algae in your pool. Regularly brushing and vacuuming and using a pool cover when it rains can decrease the chance of a pink algae infestation in your pool. But don’t forget to remove the cover during sunny days, even if you’re not using the pool – sunlight and UV rays are natural oxidizers and help prevent pink algae growth. Regular pool-shocking and cleaning may also prevent pink algae from forming in your pool; however, if pink algae are already present and visible, there are some steps you can take to get rid of it.
- Physically cleaning your pool – Remember to look for it not just in your pool but other areas and items nearby your pool area that may be damp and dark, like storage containers for pool toys, garden hoses etc.
- Use an algaecide – There are algaecides specifically designed for pink algae, and a professional company can recommend and administer them to rid your pool of this unwanted invader.
- Pool Shocking – Although resistant to chlorine and bromine, it is not entirely unaffected by it. The high amounts of chemicals present during a pool-shock treatment are part of the treatment of pink algae.
- Filter continuously for 24 hours – After a thorough pool shock, running your filter for a full 24 hours will ensure halogen or peroxide levels are maintained at a higher than usual level, helping to kill any remains of pink algae.
Getting rid of pink algae from your pool can be a lengthy process, and our professional and certified pool technicians can help you remove it and recommend how to keep it out. Each pool is different, and we offer a personal and customized approach with our pool cleaning services, so contact us today for expert and knowledgeable pool 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 Green Algae In Your Pool: Part 2
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