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Thread: Algae - Pool Cleaner - SLAM

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    Algae - Pool Cleaner - SLAM

    I have cloudy water and lots of yellow dust settled on the walls/floor of my vinyl pool. No trouble holding FC - the water just doesn't look clear and sparkly. I'm assuming this is pollen because we have a stand of pine trees in the lot next-door. My polaris just fluffs it around, since the particles are too fine for the filter bag to catch. I was recently gifted a Dolphin 4 pool cleaner, and it seems to clean the yellow from vinyl liner fairly well (better than the polaris), but the next day the yellow dust comes back.

    I'm running the pump for 9 hours/day. I'm brushing the walls and/or running the pool cleaner daily too. I have a sand filter.

    Any ideas to help the water sparkle again? Thanks!!

    FC 5
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    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
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    wjr75's Avatar
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    Re: Cloudy water...pollen problems?

    You can get a finer silt bag for your Polaris. I use one it works much better than the original bag. May help but may still be to fine.
    Inground 22k gallon gunite 15x31 main pool, 15x7 wading pool/sunning deck, hot tub/with overflow (9' octagon with limestone top) & slide NSWG, Aqua Blue Pebble Sheen
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    Re: Cloudy water...pollen problems?

    Bump your filter time to 24/7. Stir the surface mechanically to get things moving into the skimmer. Are you getting good draw into the skimmer? (Is the water level about half-way?)
    Dave S.
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    Re: Cloudy water...pollen problems?

    I left the filter running all night last night. This morning, the yellow sediment was again settled on the bottom and on the slanted walls of the deep end. The water is fairly clear - I can easily see the bottom of the deep end - but the whole pool has a bit of a yellow/green tinge. When the yellow sediment is brushed or stirred around, the water gets cloudy.

    I have the pool cleaner running now to stir it back up and hopefully filter it out. You can literally see a blue stripe through the yellow where the pool cleaner has been - like it's wiping the yellow off the vinyl. But the next day, it's all yellow again.

    I added skimmer socks to both skimmer baskets, but almost nothing has collected there.

    I plan on turning off the SWG tonight and running the OCLT. This should tell me if there's an algae problem (rather than just a pollen problem), right?

    Does it sound like my sand filter isn't doing a good enough job? Or do I need to slam in case it's an algae problem?
    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
    25,000 gallon vinyl pool (20x40 rectangular)
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Cloudy water...pollen problems?

    OCLT is a good idea. It is likely algae or chemistry problem. Your sand filter is probably fine.
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    Re: Cloudy water...pollen problems?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    Bump your filter time to 24/7. Stir the surface mechanically to get things moving into the skimmer. Are you getting good draw into the skimmer? (Is the water level about half-way?)
    Draw into the skimmer seems to be fine, and water level is half-way. The pollen doesn't seem to be collecting on the surface of the water - more like dust settled on the bottom of the pool. I ran the filter 24 hours last night, and it was still settled at the bottom. I'll keep it going 24/7 and see if that helps. I'm hoping it's just a pollen problem and not an algae problem
    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
    25,000 gallon vinyl pool (20x40 rectangular)
    Polaris 280
    TF-100 test kit

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    Re: Cloudy water...pollen problems?

    Honestly, what you are describing sounds more like algae. We live on 26 acres mostly pine and our seasonal pollen drop was done over a month ago. During that pollen drop it not only coats bottom of pool eventually but also accumulates along the water line at the walls. You'd also probably have significant pollen on outdoor flat surfaces.

    OCLT will tell you for sure. Do you have a pic?
    18*36*23 true "L" vinyl IG 29,000 gallons. SWG. TF-100 test kit.
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    Re: Cloudy water...pollen problems?

    Quote Originally Posted by AimeeH View Post
    OCLT will tell you for sure. Do you have a pic?
    I will post a picture tomorrow along with results of OCLT. The surfaces have all been brushed this morning, so you couldn't see anything on a photo right now.

    Should I turn the pump off tonight for the OCLT or does it matter? I usually only run the pump during the day, but I left it on all night to see if it helped clear the water.
    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
    25,000 gallon vinyl pool (20x40 rectangular)
    Polaris 280
    TF-100 test kit

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    Re: Cloudy water...pollen problems?

    I would leave my pump on but you'll have to turn off SWG TO DO OCLT.
    18*36*23 true "L" vinyl IG 29,000 gallons. SWG. TF-100 test kit.
    http://tftestkits.net/splash-page.html

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    Re: Cloudy water...pollen problems?

    Current pic of the deep end...you can see the yellowish/green tint of the water. The yellow sediment has all been brushed around, so you can't see any clumps or deposits.

    I raised the FC from 6.5 to 10 so I can hopefully get a more accurate OCLT tonight. If I pass the test, can I safely assume I just have some cloudy pollen/dust and there's no need to SLAM?
    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
    25,000 gallon vinyl pool (20x40 rectangular)
    Polaris 280
    TF-100 test kit

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    How long can algae survive in a pool cleaner?

    A neighbor gave me a Dolphin 4 automatic pool cleaner. I cleaned it up, washed out the filter bag, and put it in the pool. It works great and seems to do a super job.

    Now, a couple days later, I have noticeably cloudier water and yellow sediment settling in the bottom of the pool (I have another thread on this forum going about that). My question here is this: could the hand-me-down pool cleaner have introduced algae to my previously sparkling pool? It had not been used by my neighbor in over a year and the debris leftover in the bag was completely dry when they gave it to me. Could algae live that long with no moisture?

    I'm hoping it's just some pollen or dust that will eventually get filtered out. I will be performing the OCLT tonight to see what's going on.
    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
    25,000 gallon vinyl pool (20x40 rectangular)
    Polaris 280
    TF-100 test kit

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    Re: How long can algae survive in a pool cleaner?

    It could bring algae in. Was your FC low? Could it have just stirred up dust from the bottom you didn't notice?
    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: How long can algae survive in a pool cleaner?

    Thanks for your reply Tim. Fortunately, FC hasn't been below 5 to my knowledge (CYA is 60). I'm hoping that it's just dust, etc. But the greenish/yellow tint to the water is making me nervous.

    I raised FC to 10 so I can perform the OCLT tonight. Seems I read somewhere that it's more accurate if FC is a bit higher. If I pass the OCLT tonight, is it safe to assume that it's just a pollen/dust issue, and not an algae problem, even if the water remains cloudy and yellowish?
    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
    25,000 gallon vinyl pool (20x40 rectangular)
    Polaris 280
    TF-100 test kit

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: How long can algae survive in a pool cleaner?

    Yea, the mods/experts have been hashing out if it's actually necessary to bring the FC ip,for the OCLT, but in your case it can't hurt.

    Keep us posted.
    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: How long can algae survive in a pool cleaner?

    Hi

    You have two threads going which may confuse those trying to help you. I posted in your earlier thread that I'm thinking you have algae. I looked at your pic and am still convinced that is the case. Pollen would accumulate mostly like dust piles in the creases not on the sloped walls. I know this because I have issues with both......every year.

    Chlorine never dropped below 5 that you know of is another sign. You have 60 CYA and you're slightly further south than I am. I'm guessing that depending at what point you tested 5, it could have been less at some point on a sunny day.

    With that being said, please don't FEAR algae. You can fix that too. You are already on the right path with having a test kit and understanding OCLT.

    I sounded just like you the first time I "thought" I might have pollen or algae. I feared the worst. It was algae as much as I wanted to hope someone here could tell me it was pollen. So I'm speaking from experience........and empathy here. We can walk you through whatever your problem is. In my five years of pool ownership, thanks to this forum, I've gone from complete ignorance of pool chemistry and mechanics to maintaining crystal clear water, re-wiring pump to bypass timer and even last weekend replaced the motor.

    Do your OCLT but not with prejudice expecting a pollen problem.
    18*36*23 true "L" vinyl IG 29,000 gallons. SWG. TF-100 test kit.
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    Re: How long can algae survive in a pool cleaner?

    Moderator Note. Both threads have been merged here

    Thank you Aimee! I really appreciate your insight. I will post my follow-up on the other thread in the "just getting started" forum to avoid confusion with multiple threads.

    I think the main reason I fear algae (and I admit I really do!) is that I'll have to tell my kids that they can't swim for a few days while we're at shock level...

    What is your opinion about the OCLT - should I perform tonight with a starting FC of 10 (what I have now)? Or should I go ahead and raise to shock level now just in case, to get a jump-start on the SLAM process and hopefully have the pool swimmable sooner? Then if it turns out to pass the OCLT tonight, I can just let FC levels drop back to normal.
    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
    25,000 gallon vinyl pool (20x40 rectangular)
    Polaris 280
    TF-100 test kit

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    Re: How long can algae survive in a pool cleaner?

    Start with what your test shows you AFTER SUNSET, that should be fine. Make sure your SWG is off, because what's the use of the test if it's producing chlorine all night right? And check in the AM before sunrise.

    It is safe to swim at SLAM levels too. So let 'em swim. Might want to use older swimsuits though as chlorine does ultimately degrade them.
    18*36*23 true "L" vinyl IG 29,000 gallons. SWG. TF-100 test kit.
    http://tftestkits.net/splash-page.html

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    My first SLAM

    For the past two days, I thought I had a pollen problem. There was yellowish sediment on the bottom and slanted walls of the pool, and it puffed around when brushed. The pool took on a greenish-yellow tint this morning. As the day went on, the water became more and more green. I would brush the sediment around and it settled back within a couple of hours (the water is still fairly clear - I can easily see the bottom of the deep end).

    This is my first SLAM...so I may need some hand-holding. We bought the house last year and I never had to SLAM once last season. My SWG kept everything sparkly.

    I raised the FC to 24 (per the chart..CYA is 60). I'll check it again before bed, and then do the OCLT tonight and post results here.

    Does my description sound like mustard algae, requiring an even higher shock level? If so, when/how will I know?

    So, while I wait for the test results I keep thinking about what caused this. As far as I know, FC never dropped below 5. It's been over 5 for the past two days while I've been suspicious of something in the water. I was recently given a Dolphin 4 pool cleaner from a neighbor who used to have a pool, and I used it a few days ago. It had been sitting unused and dry in their garage for over a year. Could this have introduced algae (mustard or other) to my pool?

    Thanks for the help and hand-holding! I'll post results in the morning.
    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
    25,000 gallon vinyl pool (20x40 rectangular)
    Polaris 280
    TF-100 test kit

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    Re: My first SLAM

    I would recommend maintaining the SLAM FC until you are sure there are no visible algae plumes in the water and CCs are less than 0.5 ppm. Save the OCLT for the very last step. Not so sure you have a mustard algae problem, but you can read the Pool School - Mustard Algae page for more info. Even if you have MA, the treatment is a regular SLAM first, pass all 3 SLAM criteria, THEN increase FC to MA level only for 24 hours. So I would just follow the regular SLAM page for now (link below).
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
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    Re: My first SLAM

    Quote Originally Posted by Texas Splash View Post
    I would recommend maintaining the SLAM FC until you are sure there are no visible algae plumes in the water and CCs are less than 0.5 ppm. Save the OCLT for the very last step.
    I may need help identifying visible algae plumes. I'm still not sure if I'm seeing pollen, dirt, or algae. This is the bottom of my shallow end right now. This sediment has settled in an hour since I last brushed the pool. FC is at shock level, and filter is running. SWG is off.

    Attachment 48997
    saltwater generator - Hayward turbo cell
    Whisperflo multiport valve sand filter
    25,000 gallon vinyl pool (20x40 rectangular)
    Polaris 280
    TF-100 test kit

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