As the old saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” You’re far better off working to prevent algae bloom from ever taking place than you are finding ways to recover from one after the fact (see Parts 1 & 2). But sometimes life takes unexpected twists and turns, and preventative measures aren’t always foolproof.
For example, perhaps you recently decided to throw a big pool party, which means that your fun-loving guests added all sorts of contaminants to your pool water. Then there was a heatwave complete with several days of humid weather and full sunshine. Next, your family went out of town for two weeks and forgot to leave anyone in charge of maintaining your pool chemistry while you were gone. Last but not least, there was a severe rainstorm. Predictably, you came home from your vacation to find a green, mucky mess of full-blown algae bloom in your pool. Now you’re left wondering what you should do to address the problem.
How Can an Algae Bloom Be Eradicated?
Step number one, you’ll want to run a test on your pool water to find the exact conditions you are facing. Adjust the pH based on the results of your test. Try to get your pool’s pH between 7.1 and 7.3. Then it will be ready for you to start the sanitizing process.
Next, inspect your pool equipment. Run an extra-long backwash on your filter and make sure your baskets get thoroughly cleaned. Cool your pool water off by turning off the heater and taking off your solar cover.
Then, vigorously brush your pool’s surfaces. You don’t want to leave any algae clinging to the sides or bottom of your pool. Make sure to get into all the nooks and crannies where that pesky alga seems to love hiding out. Don’t forget to brush steps, returns, ladders, areas surrounding the fittings, drains, and skimmers. The lower the circulation in certain parts of the pool, the more you’ll need to brush that particular area.
Once all these tasks have been accomplished, you’ll want to give your pool a heavy shock treatment. Include a polymer or metal-based algaecide. Let your filter keep running until the next day. Then you’ll need to run another test on your pool water. If the test reveals high sanitizer levels, continue the backwashing and brushing routine. Look for any areas where visible algae may still be lurking in your pool surfaces.
If the test comes back revealing a very low or nonexistent sanitizer level in the pool, you’ll need to give it another shock. Low sanitizer indicates that there is still a significant amount of algae in your pool. Keep running the pool cleaner as well. This will circulate the water for better dispersion of the shock chemicals. As a preventative measure, you should place all your pool equipment, accessories, and pool toys that may have algae on them into the water. That way they’ll get treated along with the water and surfaces of your pool. Even steps and ladder surfaces that are outside the water but in close proximity to the pool could use a good scrubbing.
All of this hard work should get your algae problem under control. Then, follow the routine maintenance steps we touched on earlier to help prevent future algae blooms. Once your pool is clean and clear again you can get back to enjoying your piece of backyard paradise once again.
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