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Thread: Algae Question

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    rdshackleford's Avatar
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    Algae Question

    Moderator note - Moved from here: SLAM complete! How much do I owe y'all? (Pics))


    Quote Originally Posted by nyvram View Post
    The real breakthrough came after reading about algae hiding under the stairs...
    Can you tell me more about this? Or give thread links? Thanks.

    -R
    29,085.1 gal inground grecian vinyl, Hayward Super Pump VS, Hayward S-240 sand filter, Dolphin Nautilus Plus (aka Agador Spartacus), Taylor K-2006 kit, nice pool brush, crappy leaf net, frogs

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    Re: SLAM complete! How much do I owe y'all? (Pics)

    Quote Originally Posted by rdshackleford View Post
    Can you tell me more about this? Or give thread links? Thanks.

    -R
    I've read several threads where people pulled the ladders completely up during SLAM in case of algae hiding under the rungs in those hard-to-get-to compartment 'dividers' the plastic rungs are composed from to give them added strength.

    Those are notorious for harboring algae.

    So during my SLAM (CYA dropped from 60 to 50 so I brought FC down to 20) I jumped in the bleach bath and stood next to the rungs and 'felt around' underneath them and rubbed and brushed them (couldn't see what it looked like obviously) until they stopped feeling 'slimy' and felt like plastic again.

    Not sure what effect this would have had on a properly dosed pool but I was trying to ensure I removed any active algae I could find even if the OCLT was positive.

    Basically, anything touching your water is a potential algae conductor.

    - - - Updated - - -



    ok ok i'll take the light out. good catch.

    thanks for your kind comments. i really wasn't fishing for compliments..i've been blown away at some of the pools y'all have on here.
    33x15' INGROUND pool roughly 14,800 gallons. liner, hayward multiport, sand filter (S-210S), pentair century 3/4hp pump (1081) & 320 automatic chlorinator. skimmer at one end of pool, 2 returns at the other.

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    Re: SLAM complete! How much do I owe y'all? (Pics)

    Quote Originally Posted by nyvram View Post
    Basically, anything touching your water is a potential algae conductor.
    Interesting. What are the concerns with having just a little algae? Does it spread and potentially get out of control? Is it a big FC consumer even if only in a few spots? Before I go get medieval on any algae hiding out in my pool, I'd like to know the theory behind all the effort.

    Thanks again.
    -R
    29,085.1 gal inground grecian vinyl, Hayward Super Pump VS, Hayward S-240 sand filter, Dolphin Nautilus Plus (aka Agador Spartacus), Taylor K-2006 kit, nice pool brush, crappy leaf net, frogs

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    Re: SLAM complete! How much do I owe y'all? (Pics)

    Quote Originally Posted by rdshackleford View Post
    Interesting. What are the concerns with having just a little algae? Does it spread and potentially get out of control? Is it a big FC consumer even if only in a few spots? Before I go get medieval on any algae hiding out in my pool, I'd like to know the theory behind all the effort.

    Thanks again.
    -R
    if it was able to grow in the first place, what would keep it from multiplying?
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    Re: SLAM complete! How much do I owe y'all? (Pics)

    Quote Originally Posted by rdshackleford View Post
    Interesting. What are the concerns with having just a little algae? Does it spread and potentially get out of control? Is it a big FC consumer even if only in a few spots? Before I go get medieval on any algae hiding out in my pool, I'd like to know the theory behind all the effort.

    Thanks again.
    -R
    algae is a sign that your FC hasn't been staying high enough. the whole premise of the TFP method is the make sure your pool is algae free (i.e. the OCLT), and once it is, then maintain your FC levels above the minimum for your CYA level the algae will never get started and your pool will stay crystal clear. algae grows exponentially (i.e. 1 becomes 2, 2 become 4, etc) so having visible algae is a bad sign. it needs to be killed and never allowed to return.
    Dan
    9,000 gallon in-ground Saltwater pool, plaster, cartridge filer, 1.0 hp pump, Hayward T-15 SWCG, TF-100
    Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart; Pool School - Test Kits Compared;

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    Re: SLAM complete! How much do I owe y'all? (Pics)

    Quote Originally Posted by DaninFLA View Post
    algae is a sign that your FC hasn't been staying high enough. the whole premise of the TFP method is the make sure your pool is algae free (i.e. the OCLT), and once it is, then maintain your FC levels above the minimum for your CYA level the algae will never get started and your pool will stay crystal clear. algae grows exponentially (i.e. 1 becomes 2, 2 become 4, etc) so having visible algae is a bad sign. it needs to be killed and never allowed to return.
    Excellent. Let me explain where I am coming from and ask a more specific question. I had recurrent algae issues mainly due to a misunderstanding of my required FC level and an ignorance of how CYA levels affect that. As I learn the TFP method, and switched over to bleach and raised my FC level, I removed the algae chemically, manually, and automatically, except perhaps in small spots where it may hide and persist. My OCLT was 0.2ppm. Then I found a couple of small spots of green algae on the walls, measured in square inches not feet, and brushed the walls.

    My specific question is how far do I have to take this? Is there some point at which it if is clean enough, it WILL NOT grow back as long as I maintain at least the minimum FC@CYA level? Or is it everpresent, entering from the air, and going to invade at the first drop of FC on a warm sunny day? Is the attempt to erradicate algae simply OCD or prudent vigilance?

    Cheers,
    -R
    29,085.1 gal inground grecian vinyl, Hayward Super Pump VS, Hayward S-240 sand filter, Dolphin Nautilus Plus (aka Agador Spartacus), Taylor K-2006 kit, nice pool brush, crappy leaf net, frogs

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    Re: SLAM complete! How much do I owe y'all? (Pics)

    P
    Quote Originally Posted by rdshackleford View Post
    Excellent. Let me explain where I am coming from and ask a more specific question. I had recurrent algae issues mainly due to a misunderstanding of my required FC level and an ignorance of how CYA levels affect that. As I learn the TFP method, and switched over to bleach and raised my FC level, I removed the algae chemically, manually, and automatically, except perhaps in small spots where it may hide and persist. My OCLT was 0.2ppm. Then I found a couple of small spots of green algae on the walls, measured in square inches not feet, and brushed the walls.

    My specific question is how far do I have to take this? Is there some point at which it if is clean enough, it WILL NOT grow back as long as I maintain at least the minimum FC@CYA level? Or is it everpresent, entering from the air, and going to invade at the first drop of FC on a warm sunny day? Is the attempt to erradicate algae simply OCD or prudent vigilance?

    Cheers,
    -R
    once you eradicate it and maintain the proper FC level in the pool it should not return. As you see visible algae, our recommendation would be to SLAM the pool.

    Some types of algae are able to protect themselves with a biofilm, reducing chlorines ability to kill it. That is why one of the requirements of the SLAM is to brush the entire pool once a day during the process. This brushing breaks up,the biofilm and allows the chlorine access to,the algae to kill it.

    I would recommend (if you haven't done so already) reading the SLAM page and following the instructions completely until

    You pass OCLT

    CC is .5 or less

    You have a clear pool, which includes not seeing any live/dead algae.

    It is the third thing that is,confusing at times as many people only look at the water clarity and disregard small areas of visible algae.

    Pool School - SLAM - Shock Level And Maintain
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: SLAM complete! How much do I owe y'all? (Pics)

    Quote Originally Posted by rdshackleford View Post
    Then I found a couple of small spots of green algae on the walls, measured in square inches not feet, and brushed the walls.

    My specific question is how far do I have to take this?
    you've answered your own question

    if you are still brushing algae, your OCLT is not complete even if the number is < .05

    dont quit when you have the end game in reach!

    - - - Updated - - -

    to tim -- you said it way better than me
    33x15' INGROUND pool roughly 14,800 gallons. liner, hayward multiport, sand filter (S-210S), pentair century 3/4hp pump (1081) & 320 automatic chlorinator. skimmer at one end of pool, 2 returns at the other.

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    Re: Algae Question

    if its still visible, then you need to go thru the SLAM process as outlined in pool school. you continue to SLAM (not a one time shock) until you meet the three criteria. you obviously don't meet the clear water criteria since you have visible algae.

    once you go thru the SLAM, then you maintain your FC levels above the minimum at ALL times and it wont come back...but its critical that you SLAM first. if you have algae, keeping your FC levels above the minimum is not enough to kill off present algae since it multiplies faster than you can kill it. that's why the SLAM is needed and the reason for the SLAM levels in FC. That's the level of FC that can overcome algae multiplication and kill it all. its also why its so important to maintain the levels until you are done. if you don't, any remaining algae will continue to multiply, even with good FC levels.


    there is no "clean enough" level as you call it. its 100% kill or nothing. that's why the SLAM process is going to take a few days to complete
    Dan
    9,000 gallon in-ground Saltwater pool, plaster, cartridge filer, 1.0 hp pump, Hayward T-15 SWCG, TF-100
    Pool School - Chlorine / CYA Chart; Pool School - Test Kits Compared;

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    Re: Algae Question

    I can tell you that I do NOT have ANY algae in my pool at this moment. I do everything in my power to keep it from having any.

    Saying that I do have a pond on my property and wetlands behind us so I KNOW there are algae spores in my area. I also have the frogs visit every once in a while from both places. As soon as I see them I evict them.

    I do an OCLT about every other week to just to make sure there is nothing trying to grow in my pool.

    It is my husbands job to brush the sides of the pool. Last summer he "forgot" to do it........."I did not see anything so I did not think I needed to brush" When have you EVERY seen any algae in this pool?? WELL I got the brush and ran it along the side and what to my wondering eyes do I see??? BUT a slight cloud of yellow/green coming off the wall!!! He jumped in the pool, fully clothed! and finished brushing the pool! LOL

    So saying that........you have for feed your pool and brush it at least once a week if not more depending on your area.

    If you are still seeing algae on your walls or floor there is a bigger source hiding somewhere.....ladder, steps,lights, skimmer door, skimmer face plate, main drain pipe if it is not open and running (I had that one happen to me too).

    Start at square one and see what you find.

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Re: Algae Question

    Just because the proper FC/CYA levels are being maintained in the bulk pool water that does not mean that these levels are present everywhere in a pool. The circulation right at a pool surface goes to zero which means that chlorine only gets into the nooks and crannies of plaster via diffusion which is very slow. This is one reason why one should regularly brush their pool. Another is that biofilm from bacteria grow on pool surfaces and while most bacteria are killed before they can form biofilm, brushing ensures that none gets established anyway.

    Areas of near zero circulation such as behind pool lights and under removable ladders can harbor large amounts of algae though they are limited in their growth rate due to the lower light conditions. Nevertheless when such areas get disturbed, large clumps of algae may come out and the algae within those clumps can grow and may result in noticeable chlorine demand or visible algae. The purpose of SLAM FC/CYA levels (roughly 40%) is to have chlorine penetrate algae clumps to kill algae within faster than they can grow and to do so with reasonable speed.

    There are algae spores in the air constantly getting introduced into the pool where the proper FC/CYA ratio kills them before they can either reproduce or establish themselves in an area of low circulation. So it is best to remove as much algae as possible from a pool so that only blown-in algae spores need to be dealt with. This is particularly true for yellow/mustard algae that is more resistant to chlorine and would otherwise require a higher FC/CYA level (roughly 15%) to prevent its growth. For such algae, it is critically important to completely eradicate it from the pool if one wants to maintain regular FC/CYA levels (roughly 7.5%) which only prevent green and black algae growth when nutrient conditions are high (e.g. phosphates and nitrates).
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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    Re: Algae Question

    Thanks all for the knowledgeable replies. My pool & water are Cristal. Did not SLAM, but I don't rule it out as an option.

    I would like to clarify a couple of replies above reguarding the OCLT. One reply said 0.5 or less will pass, and one said it can be <0.05 under certain conditions and still fail. The OCLT page says <1.0 fails. So, I'm just a little confused to what results I'm looking for in the OCLT. (and not sure how one measures .05 ppm anything outside of a professional lab)

    -R
    29,085.1 gal inground grecian vinyl, Hayward Super Pump VS, Hayward S-240 sand filter, Dolphin Nautilus Plus (aka Agador Spartacus), Taylor K-2006 kit, nice pool brush, crappy leaf net, frogs

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Algae Question

    OCLT more than 1.0 loss fails

    It's CC that is .5 Any CC above .5 is a fail to end a SLAM

    Your Taylor K2006 can go down to .2 accuracy on the FAS-DPD chlorine test. That is why we strongly encourage the Taylor FAS-DPD test. That coupled with its ability to test above 10 FC allows us the testing we need to follow our system.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: Algae Question

    Quote Originally Posted by kimkats View Post
    ...you have for feed your pool and brush it at least once a week if not more depending on your area.Kim
    I do weekly brushing of the vertical sides, in the corners, and around the steps. My Dolphin Nautilus Plus seems to do a great job on slanted and horizontal areas. Do these auto robots do a good enough job in those areas so as the don't require brushing?

    -R
    29,085.1 gal inground grecian vinyl, Hayward Super Pump VS, Hayward S-240 sand filter, Dolphin Nautilus Plus (aka Agador Spartacus), Taylor K-2006 kit, nice pool brush, crappy leaf net, frogs

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