Fight against Green Algae in my pool

When you live in a warm, humid states like Florida, having a swimming pool in your backyard is a dream come true, but some time, (most of the time actually), you have to deal with green algae problems.  

One of the most common battles for pool owners in Florida is the fight against galgae.

Although algae are not necessarily dangerous in themselves, they cause waste to be released, providing a perfect setting for bacteria and other harmful microorganisms to flourish.

There are more than 20,000 species of algae, but only a small number of are frequently found in the swimming pool water.

The algae spores constantly enter your pool, brought by the wind, rain or by the pollution of the swimsuits and equipment.

Phosphates are the real problem when we fight against algae

Phosphates can reach the pool water in various ways, either by weather conditions such as wind or rain, by the use of certain chemicals, or because our garden has been enriched with phosphates to improve grass growth or the plants.

Regardless of how it happens, if phosphates are allowed to remain in pool water, they will be reduced to orthophosphates in one of this three ways:

1. Oxidation (converting compounds into oxides)

2. Hydrolysis (decomposition by water)

3. Enzymatic digestion

When Phosphates are broken down into orthophosphates, becomes a primary food source for all types of algae.

This means that the more phosphates in the water, the yummier food there is for algae to consume, and the faster the algae will grow.

Most Florida pool owners are unaware of this fact and when eliminating the algae from the pool they do not take this fact into account, prolonging the problem and increasing the expense in chemical products.

But this is only half the story. Phosphates are not toxic or harmful, and removing them as a remedy to the formation and proliferation of algae is ineffective.

Your best choice is to maintain proper chlorine levels, regularly use an algaecide to prevent algae from blooming in your pool, and occasionally shock your pool to give it a really good sanitizing whammy.

Keeping Phosphates Under Control.

The challenge with phosphates is that they are constantly being introduced into your swimming pool water, so you should keep them under control.

Levels less than 250ppb are considered low.

250-500ppb should be considered when balancing the rest of the chemicals, and 500ppb+ should be addressed directly because algae become increasingly resistant to sanitizers, including chlorine shock.

It is good practice to have your pool’s phosphate levels checked at least monthly.

The preventative measure:

Follow this tips to Limited phosphate exposure

  • Remove leaves and organic material from the water as soon as ossible
  • Vacuum and clean filters and pump baskets regularly
  • Be aware of the phosphate content of cleaners and chemicals used in and around the swimming pool
  • Don’t allow drainage from plants or the lawn to enter the pool

It is important to know that phosphate removers do not kill existing algae. Once bloomed, only superchlorination and/or an algaecide will do the job.

Types of Algae that frequent the swimming pools:

  • Green Algae: Muddy the water, stick to the walls and float around the pool.
  • Yellow Algae: A wall clinging variety, also called mustard algae, is usually found on the shady side of the pool. This variety is resistant to normal chlorine levels and must be dealt with firmly.
  • Black Algae: Perhaps the most aggravating strain of algae, it can be extremely difficult to eradicate completely. This is not entirely accurate, but the difficulty in removing it fully is due to the strong roots and protective layers over top of the black algae plant. Black algae will appear as dark black or blue/green spots, usually the size of a pencil eraser tip, up to the size of a quarter.
  • Pink Algae: Not really algae at all, but a form of bacteria, which appears as spots or streaks in corners and crevices. Also known as pink slime or pink mold, it forms in the same manner as other biofilms, and prefers to attach itself to smooth surfaces, out of the way from your pool cleaner and pool brush, in areas of low flow or circulation.

Preventive Treatment:

It must be done constantly. The algae are persistent and their must be prevented; in every maintenance plan they should be taken into account.

There are many products to prevent its appearance; You can choose, for example, for the use of mutilation products (which usually carry anti-algae, you must ensure this) or add the anti-algae directly and regularly.

The frequency and quantity of the product will vary depending on the size of the pool and the manufacturer’s instructions.

Palliative Treatment

When the preventive plan fails, and the algae make their appearance, whether it is Green, Mustard or Black algae, it is advisable to begin by:

  • Thoroughly brushing all surfaces where they have been deposited and to pass the pool cleaner with the selector valve in empty position so as not to contaminate the filter. This step is not essential but will shorten the treatment time and save chemical products.
  • Then you must measure the pH of the water. After pH regulation it is necessary to make a shock treatment with dichloro (Rapid Chlorine).
  • In addition to the shock treatment with Dichloro, you must do the same with Floculante so that all the dirt goes to the bottom and is easy to remove with the pool cleaner.
  • After this, the filtration equipment must be started for 24 hours (preferably in the recirculation position) and after these have been re-brushed and vacuumed as recommended before starting the chemical treatment (with the valve in the empty position).
  • Finally, make a shock treatment with an algicide.

No matter what kind of issues affect your pool  Urban Pool Services, is able to handle any task you send our way. Our Miami Dade County pool cleaning company will assess the wear and tear on your pool and provide you with reasonably priced options to get the issue fixed in no time.