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Green Algae Pool Cleaning 6-step Process

Clean Pool with Planter

Green algae is unsightly and really detracts from the enjoyment of owning and using a swimming pool. You quickly know that you have a green algae problem when it causes your swimming pool water to turn a nasty dark green color. This is due to a moss-like bacterial substance that clings to the pool walls and gradually mixes into the water.

If you want to get rid of green algae, it is likely that you will need to use chemicals to perform a ‘chlorine shock’ to the water. This involves using a sand type powder called shock that resembles washing machine detergent and has a high concentration of chlorine. The substance raises the volume of chlorine in your pool, kills green algae, and restores your pool’s water back to crystal clear.

Using Chlorine Shock for Green Clean

To ensure that the ‘shock’ treatment is as effective as possible, you should scrub the walls and floor of the pool using a strong-bristled cleaning brush to get rid of as much algae as possible. In most green clean cases, you will need roughly one pound (450 grams) of chlorine shock for every 10,000 gallons of water. For best results, dissolve the ‘shock’ in a bucket of water before adding it to your pool. Adding the ‘shock’ directly to your pool water is less effective and could damage the pool liner. After using the chlorine shock treatment on your pool, wait until the green algae has been eliminated and the chlorine level of the water is back to normal levels before using the pool again.

6 Steps to Treating Green Algae

1. Make sure that the swimming pool filter is clean and operating properly. Algae can build up in the filter and make the filtration system and motor dirty and less efficient.

2. Test the balance of all pool chemical levels. Generally speaking, the pH of the water should be in the 7.2 to 7.6 range, while there should be one to three parts-per million (ppm) of free chlorine, 80 to 120 ppm alkalinity, and 200 to 350 ppm of calcium hardness.

3. Follow the instructions on the chlorine shock treatment box and let it work overnight.

4. The following day, brush and vacuum the pool surfaces and backwash/clean the filter to get rid of any algae or debris that has built up. For those unfamiliar with the term ‘backwashing’, it simply means to reverse the water flow back through the filter to remove clogged debris.

5. If your swimming pool is affected by heavy green algae growth, it is likely that you will need to perform a second chlorine shock treatment.

6. Re-test the water for pH and total alkalinity and also be aware of different forms of algae that may exist. While green algae is the most common, black algae can grow on floors and walls and can become a thick mat that ruins the water. Mustard algae can be removed easily enough; however, it will return if not properly treated. If your pool has mustard algae, you may need a different algaecide as it is often resistant to chlorine.

Preventing Future Green Cleans

While owning a swimming pool can be tremendous fun, it can also be challenging as constant maintenance is required. One of the best ways to prevent green algae growth is to keep the chlorine range of the water within specified guidelines. If algae grows and threatens to ruin the quality of the water, use chlorine shock for a fast and effective method of cleaning and water purification. If you’re unwilling to take on this endeavor by yourself, be sure to speak with a reputable pool service company in your area, as they can quickly get your pool back to performing at its best again.


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