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Thread: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

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    First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    I have successfully cleared my pool, I Don't have my numbers with me at the moment from test kit as im at work, but i know everything is slightly high, except for the pH it's perfect. When I say slightly high, I mean just barely over recomended levels. Here is a pic of my pool, can anyone tell me what the stains are? This is the only good pic I have currently of the stains, I can zoom in tonight and submit more if requested. I am trying to scrub them with no success. I think the black stains are algae, they are slimy I scrub them and they become dry feeling. The pool was a swamp for 6 months to a year before i started working on it. Thanks.

    Also, I have a yellow looking stain on the steps, pool walls and bottom. I think its yellow algae? I scrub and scrub and it wont come up. Any ideas/suggestion would be greatly appreciated.

    16x32 27k gal oval gunite pool, 24-inch Hayward sand filter, 1HP pump

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    Slimy stuff means algae of some variety.

    Hard to tell from the picture, but does the stiff that you can't scrub off look anything like this?


    That's scaling. It's most visible before the sun hits it, almost disappears in full sun. It's caused by high CH and letting pH get too high for too long. I've been working for almost two years to be rid of mine. At current rate, I expect it to be gone in another two years..

    Deal with the algae first - that means shock process and a lot of brushing with a steel brush.
    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: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    Okay thanks for the pics! I don't know if that's what mine looks like. Mine isn't blotchy, its just a solid yellowish area. I will zoom in after work and try to get a good shot. I didn't know I could use a steel brush on gunite, so I am definitely investing in one tonight to clean out some of the pitted pockets. Any type of cleaner or chemical work good for cleaning dark stains where the green water sat? I think that's alot of my problem.
    16x32 27k gal oval gunite pool, 24-inch Hayward sand filter, 1HP pump

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    Quote Originally Posted by lelandapple
    Okay thanks for the pics! I don't know if that's what mine looks like. Mine isn't blotchy, its just a solid yellowish area. I will zoom in after work and try to get a good shot. I didn't know I could use a steel brush on gunite, so I am definitely investing in one tonight to clean out some of the pitted pockets. Any type of cleaner or chemical work good for cleaning dark stains where the green water sat? I think that's alot of my problem.
    If the stains are where the swamp was, it's probably organic staining. A few weeks with good FC numbers should bleach them out.

    If you can get ahold of a trichlor puck, set that on the stain for 5 minutes. If it leaves a white circle, it's organic.
    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: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320
    Quote Originally Posted by lelandapple
    Okay thanks for the pics! I don't know if that's what mine looks like. Mine isn't blotchy, its just a solid yellowish area. I will zoom in after work and try to get a good shot. I didn't know I could use a steel brush on gunite, so I am definitely investing in one tonight to clean out some of the pitted pockets. Any type of cleaner or chemical work good for cleaning dark stains where the green water sat? I think that's alot of my problem.
    If the stains are where the swamp was, it's probably organic staining. A few weeks with good FC numbers should bleach them out.

    If you can get ahold of a trichlor puck, set that on the stain for 5 minutes. If it leaves a white circle, it's organic.
    Awesome! I do have pucks i'll try it tonight. Thanks for the great info!
    16x32 27k gal oval gunite pool, 24-inch Hayward sand filter, 1HP pump

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    Re: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    So I finally received my TF 50 test kit in the mail, and I was very excited to use it! I am a new pool owner, but am picking up pool chemistry like a hobby. I truly am enjoying owning a pool, and hope I can start to grasp everything in the coming years and make my pool beautiful. I truly thank the people running this site, I have learned so much here!

    Proud to list all of my accurate pool test numbers. here goes

    TC 5.5
    CC 0.5
    FC 5
    TA 110
    CH 240
    pH 7.4
    CYA --- ok did the test twice. First time a bit confused but read a CYA of 30, and on the 2nd test it clicked, went perfect and I got a CYA of 20. So I believe i am a 20 or 30 (leaning towards 30), pool store said I was at 60. Sooo yeah. I have trichlor pucks left over, which I plan to quit using once I am out. Would these raise my CYA up to 40ish?? Is it okay where it's at? I assume 30.

    So that's where I'm at.

    Still have some ugly stains on my walls, and a slight yellow tinge on the floor and steps which appears to be slowly dissipating somewhat. Other than that, it appears to be going really good, my water is sparkling. Any feedback is appreciated. Thanks.
    16x32 27k gal oval gunite pool, 24-inch Hayward sand filter, 1HP pump

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    Re: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    I have trichlor pucks left over, which I plan to quit using once I am out. Would these raise my CYA up to 40ish??
    Impossible to know until you tell us how many you intend to use. Pucks will raise your CYA. The poolcalculator can tell you by how much.

    Cya of 20-30 is a little too low and I would buy the CYA seperately calculate a dose to raise CYA by 20ppm and save the pucks for another day. You will use them sooner or later and they don't go bad.

    It sounds as if your stains are organic. By far, the best way to reduce/eliminate them is elevated chlorine. Get your CYA up to 40-50 and then run your FC around 7-8ppm and, over time, I think the stains will go away.

    Brushing them is VERY helpful.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    Lee land, I had organic tannin stains from where piles of leaves sat on my foreclosure swamp before I pool-schooled it. The shocking process cleaned most of those up and the sun/chlorine/time combo got the rest, with the exception of iron precipitate.
    So if everything mostly cleans up but then you find yellowing that won't go away, that *could* be what's going on on the stairs if you're on well water or your municipality has iron in your fill water at levels above .4 ppm

    So if a puck doesn't remove it, you can also try a couple of crushed up vitamin c tablet in a sock on the steps. If the vitamin c removes the yellow, post back and let us know. Iron is a pita but there are a few things you can do to ameliorate same (an ascorbic acid treatment, aggressive sequestering, pre filtering your fill water, keeping ph on lower end of scale, etc.)

    I only share this because originally I THOUGHT all my stains were organic...so I didn't maintain sequestrate initially, and then the iron ones got worse
    In ground extended Grecian, 22,000 gal, Hayward 220t sand filter, vinyl liner, dolphin m4 supreme.
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    Helpful Links:
    GET A TEST KIT Chlorine/CYA Chart How to SLAM About Metals & Stains

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    Re: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    Ok, I will try the trichlor pucks on them tonight. I will get some Vitamin C and also try that out.

    I will be raising my CYA tomorrow and crank up my FC. I believe I only have 1 CYA test yet (I think TF-50 kit only has approx 3 tests for CYA). I scrub it and I see some green come off, so I believe it's organic staining. I too had a foreclosure swamp for nearly a year, full of froggies, lol.

    Another thing, if I raise my FC to 7-8ppm is that safe to swim in? Thanks alot for the info everyone.

    Edit: I'm on city water not well water BTW
    16x32 27k gal oval gunite pool, 24-inch Hayward sand filter, 1HP pump

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    Swampwoman's Avatar
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    Re: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    ^Values less than full shock but above min. chlorine for the amount of cya are safe to swim in -- you should have no trouble at 7-8 ppm if all else is clear, which it appears to be.

    If you're on city water, it's likely ALL just organic - just file away the info in case time/sun/bleach does not remove And enjoy your rehabbed swamp!
    In ground extended Grecian, 22,000 gal, Hayward 220t sand filter, vinyl liner, dolphin m4 supreme.
    If TFP has helped you, please click to SUPPORT TFP!
    Helpful Links:
    GET A TEST KIT Chlorine/CYA Chart How to SLAM About Metals & Stains

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    Re: First time pool owner trying to clean stains

    Quote Originally Posted by Swampwoman
    ^Values less than full shock but above min. chlorine for the amount of cya are safe to swim in -- you should have no trouble at 7-8 ppm if all else is clear, which it appears to be.

    If you're on city water, it's likely ALL just organic - just file away the info in case time/sun/bleach does not remove And enjoy your rehabbed swamp!

    Thanks! Ready to get off of work so I can get to work on my pool
    16x32 27k gal oval gunite pool, 24-inch Hayward sand filter, 1HP pump

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