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Thread: Any idea what this is? How to remove?

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    Any idea what this is? How to remove?

    There is an algae/dust/powder substance at the bottom of my pool (see pics). I've brushed the entire pool several times. The substance dissolves into the water as soon as the brush hits it. The water is clean before I start brushing, but becomes cloudy and green after off all the substance has been brushed from the bottom? Any ideas? It seems to be getting worse.


    I apologize for not having my chemicals listed. I've ordered the TF100 kit and it should arrive Monday. Thanks for any insight.
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Any idea what this is? How to remove?

    Dirt, dust, dead algae. Vacuum...

    Edit: oh, ya, please post a full set of results, but that doesn't look like "live" algae to me.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Any idea what this is? How to remove?

    Welcome!

    Looks like waterborne dust bunnies. That's dead algae clumping.

    You need to vacuum it up and kill its live microscopic cousins with lots of bleach. We're working blind here without any test results, but if you have any kind of tester at all, no matter how feeble, even test strips, take a FC reading and then use poolmath to calculate how much bleach to add to get to 10. If you'll fill out the signature, we can help you figure that out and also how much to add every day to keep things from escalating. If you nail it fast enough, you might not have to SLAM when you do get your test kit.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: Any idea what this is? How to remove?

    I attempted to vacuum the pool yesterday by sticking the vacuum hose into the skimmer, but I wasn't getting any suction at the other end of the hose. I have a pentair super flow 1 hp pump and a pentair 240 sq ft cartidge filter. I do no believe it has the backwash option. Should I still be able to vacuum?

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    Thanks FPM and Richard. Working on my sig now.

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Any idea what this is? How to remove?

    A clogged filter is more evidence that is dead algae. Nothing clogs a filter faster than algae. Cartridge filters cannot be backwashed. You need to clean the cartridges. Here's how, Pool School - Maintenance and Cleaning of Pool Filters
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Any idea what this is? How to remove?

    Quote Originally Posted by WhitBranch1 View Post
    I attempted to vacuum the pool yesterday by sticking the vacuum hose into the skimmer, but I wasn't getting any suction at the other end of the hose. I have a pentair super flow 1 hp pump and a pentair 240 sq ft cartidge filter. I do no believe it has the backwash option. Should I still be able to vacuum?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Thanks FPM and Richard. Working on my sig now.
    Did you prime the hose first? It may be the hose wasn't primed or the filter clogged. Do you feel water coming from the return?
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Any idea what this is? How to remove?

    I suspect that it could be mustard algae.

    Dead algae does not have any color. Since the water gets green, the algae is probably alive.

    This type of mustard algae can have yellow, brown or green hues. However, it’s usually a brown/olive green mix. It usually looks like sand until you brush it and it easily disperses into a cloud. After a period of time, it resettles on the floor again.

    This type of mustard algae is particularly resistant to chlorine and usually needs a thorough Slam followed by an extended period of elevated chlorine levels. After a good Slam, I would maintain a minimum FC of 15 % of the CYA for at least a week.

    With this algae, you might pass an overnight chlorine loss test because the algae is typically less total weight compared to other algae and it is much less reactive to chlorine.

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    Re: Any idea what this is? How to remove?

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom View Post
    Did you prime the hose first? It may be the hose wasn't primed or the filter clogged. Do you feel water coming from the return?
    Plenty of water pressure coming from the return. I'm going to try this again tomorrow.

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    I cleaned the catridges two weeks ago. I'll clean them again this weekend considering how much dirt is in the pool.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesW View Post
    I suspect that it could be mustard algae.

    Dead algae does not have any color. Since the water gets green, the algae is probably alive.

    This type of mustard algae can have yellow, brown or green hues. However, it’s usually a brown/olive green mix. It usually looks like sand until you brush it and it easily disperses into a cloud. After a period of time, it resettles on the floor again.

    This type of mustard algae is particularly resistant to chlorine and usually needs a thorough Slam followed by an extended period of elevated chlorine levels. After a good Slam, I would maintain a minimum FC of 15 % of the CYA for at least a week.

    With this algae, you might pass an overnight chlorine loss test because the algae is typically less total weight compared to other algae and it is much less reactive to chlorine.
    This will be my first slam. My TF100 kit came in today. I'll post the readings Sunday. Thanks for everyone's help.

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: Any idea what this is? How to remove?

    Part of what gives mustard algae its color is beta carotene. The beta carotene acts as an anti-oxidant and protects the algae from chlorine. However, sufficient chlorine will still kill the algae.

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