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Thread: Mustard algae problem that refuses to go away

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    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    uxbridge, ma.

    Mustard algae problem that refuses to go away


    I'll try to get to the point, but.....there is some history to go over.........

    My above-ground pool needed to be replaced last summer because my other one got crushed in the really bad winter of the previous winter
    The pool store I have used for years put the new pool up......they had been telling me the previous year that I needed to replace my sand, so......when they installed the new pool, I asked that they replace the sand in my Hayward filter. During the initial installation, they "forgot" to replace the sand.......when I pointed that out, they said they would. While I was not home, they say they came back to the house and replaced the sand.

    Then.....for the entire summer of 2015 I had mustard algae that would not go away......following their instructions, I shocked and treated with algae chemistry......spending a small fortune and never getting rid of it. I was told that the town added phosphates to the water, which they seemed to claim might be part of my problem. When coming to this site, I immediately noticed that phosphates are NOT a problem, despite what pool stores tell us, which has now made me even more suspicious.

    I bought new sand to replace whatever is in my filter, but thought the winter may have killed any algae, so decided to give everything a try, once again.
    The problem is now as bad as last year, despite treating the water again. questions are, can algae stay permanently embedded in sand and just keep getting put back in the water?? I can't think of any other reason it would keep coming back. And.....can Diatomaceous Earth be used in a "regular" sand filter?? It seems that it can, but I just want to make sure.

    Thanks in advance for any help anyone can give me..............I certainly need it!!!


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    AimeeH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Columbia SC

    Re: Mustard algae problem that refuses to go away

    Hi and welcome to TFP

    Your sand does not need replacing......remember it was around for millions of years before your filter. You can deep clean your sand filter. Check out this link Deep Cleaning a Sand Filter

    More importantly, you had/have algae due to improper chlorination of your pool. Take a look at pool school (link above at top of page) and read up on ABC's of pool water chemistry. What we preach isn't about any pool store quick fix or potion for fixing an algae problem overnight but rather proper and accurate testing of your water and solving problems (like algae) with common chemicals like bleach.
    18*36*23 true "L" vinyl IG 29,000 gallons. SWG. TF-100 test kit.

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    DFW, TX

    Re: Mustard algae problem that refuses to go away

    It is important to maintain FC above minimum at all times for your CYA, FC/CYA Chart, to keep your pool sanitary and algae free.

    Here is how we kill algae, SLAM
    Here is how we kill mustard algae, Pool School - Mustard Algae

    Yes, you can add DE to a sand filter to polish up the water. But only after you pass the Overnight Chlorine Loss Test
    Pool School - Add DE to a Sand Filter
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    TFP Guide

    domct203's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015

    Re: Mustard algae problem that refuses to go away

    Welcome Paul.

    Please add your pool details into your forum signature to help us help you.

    How do you normally chlorinate, how do you test your water, & how often do you test?

    Dom - TFP Guide
    Intex 18' X 48" Ultra Frame AGP 6700 gallons | Two Intex CS8110 SWG's | Hayward Pro Series 21" Sandfilter | Hayward 1.5HP Power Flo Matrix pump | Hayward Thru-wall Skimmer | Wanda the Whale | 72 sq ft of Sungrabber Solar Panels with Hayward GLC-2P-A | Taylor K2006 Test Kit, Sample Sizer & Speed Stir | Click Here To Become a TFP Supporter!

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