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Thread: Algae won't stop

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    Algae won't stop

    Hello all, new to the forum and looking for help. Have been fighting a small algae issue since the end of last season. Crystal clear water but greenish patches appear on the bottom and walls. Not slimy, more dustlike and forms greenish tinted clouds when brushed. At first we thought it was green algae, but now I am thinking mustard algae because it keeps coming back after we shock. We have been using pucks for chlorine and chlorbrite from leslie for shock, but are now about to switch to BBB to give it a shot. Floater has been removed and waiting for levels to drop to start bleach.

    This past Friday I shocked and brushed the entire pool, and then on Saturday vacuumed every inch including the walls and ladder and broke down the filter and cleaned it completely. No algae Sunday, and most of Monday, but just now at 7pm I noticed a few small patches on the walls behind the ladder that definitely were not there earlier today because we were in the water all day.

    TF100 just arrived today, here are the results:

    FC 30
    CC 0
    TC 30
    PH 6.8
    TA 60
    CH 70
    CYA 70

    Added 31oz of soda ash using poolcalculator recommendations and tested again:

    FC 31
    CC 0
    TC 31
    PH 7.4
    TA 90
    CH 70
    CYA 70

    According to the chart, for a CYA level of 70 shock level is 28 and we are still over that, how is this algae coming back with chlorine that high? Please help...
    10.5K gallon, AG vinyl, Hayward EC40 DE filter

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Welcome to tfp, elmorage

    Your thread title sounds like a horror movie

    First, it is best not to adjust ph when you FC is that high, since the ph test is not accurate above 10 ppm. Next time you FC is below 10 ppm, then check and adjust ph.

    Continue to hold your FC level at the 28 ppm until you pass all three criteria simultaneously in the shocking process pool school article. It is a process and not a one time event.

    Are the green spots typically in shaded areas of the pool?
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Every time you get a hint of mustard algae, brush it up into the water....the additional exposure to the chlorinated water helps get rid of it. It likes hugging low to your floor and walls so brush it up.

    Keep following the shock process.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Thanks. Is the FC level of 30 enough or do I need to go higher. I saw some post that said mustard algae needs shock level of 42 with a CYA of 70.
    10.5K gallon, AG vinyl, Hayward EC40 DE filter

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Algae won't stop

    First complete the normal shocking process and pass all three criteria simultaneously. This may take a few days. Then go up to Mustard algae levels for 24 hours. See: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-.../mustard_algae
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Thanks again. Seems like I have 2 of 3 conditions met already.

    CC is at zero through three tests today.
    Water is crystal clear although there are some green patches on the walls, does this still count as clear?
    First OCLT reading tonight was 26 at 930, will measure again at 530.
    10.5K gallon, AG vinyl, Hayward EC40 DE filter

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    You are very close. Our fingers are crossed.

    If you pass the OCLT at 5:30 tomorrow morning, please DO NOT call!!
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Passed the oclt, water still clear and CC at zero again. So today is brush, bring FC to 42, and sink the tools and hoses in the shock water for an hour.
    10.5K gallon, AG vinyl, Hayward EC40 DE filter

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Quote Originally Posted by elmorage
    Passed the oclt, water still clear and CC at zero again. So today is brush, bring FC to 42, and sink the tools and hoses in the shock water for an hour.
    And toys Don't forget to wash all swimsuits/swimwear. Tell the guests to wash theirs, too.
    TFP Moderator TF100 Test Kit TF100 TestKit YouTube Channel PoolMath
    You're done SLAMing when:
    1)You lose 1ppm or less FC overnight, & 2)You have .5ppm CC's or less, & 3)your water is clear.

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    OK, new plan. Going to hold off one more day on the mustard shock level and keep it at regular shock so we can swim today.

    In the meantime I did another CYA test, and got a second opinion from my wife, and it looks like it is now closer to 80-90 than the 70 I saw yesterday. I am going to start the partial drain/refill process today to get that number to something more manageable like 40-50. It is going to take forever draining with a garden hose and refilling to keep the water above skimmer level, but I guess every little bit helps.
    10.5K gallon, AG vinyl, Hayward EC40 DE filter

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    copotay's Avatar
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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Ditto what Butterfly said, I just cleared some mustard algae from mine. Wash everything, me and the wife took a diluted mixture of clorox and water and scrubbed the pool tools too, I ran clorox through the hose after vacumming to waste!!! I found that I had to brush three or four times a day to make the bad stuff get up into the water for the clorox to kill it. I see you have a DE filter, I had a sand filter and had to add DE to it to get it to start clearing the water. Now I also would backwash regularly to get the algae it was collecting out of the pump for it to collect more. Also looks like my pool is the same size as yours. I dont know if you have a ladder like mine that had tiny weep holes in the plastic steps to allow the water to enter to weight down the ladder, but last year I found a ton of green in mine, with the water clear, that kept poisioing the pool. So I drilled some larger holes in each step for the water to get into it better along with using a syringe with straight clorox each week and pump it into each step. I thought I had killed everything at the end of last year, but obviously not because it spanked me again once it got hot. I took the ladder out flushed it and everything was fine. The one thing I did not check last year was my 50 watt hang over the side light, (see attached picture). We had been scrubbing it with a tooth brush all around it finding nothing. I beleived that due to it being a one piece unit, which is sealed with a large rubber gasket to keep the water from going into the light and burning the bulb, that there would be no way stuff could cling to it. WRONG, I took it apart and found greenish stringy slime had accumulated around the gasket and although no water was going in the light, you could not see it until you pulled the light apart which is why we could not get to it even with a tooth brush.

    We also had not checked the styrofoam insert of the skimmer basket that helps the door float, loaded with yellow/green, I now have it removed.

    I cannot say these things caused my pool to get sick again, but it sure did not help, I think once I would clear the water with regular shock, these things would poison it again. But keep at it and I included the link to my play by play each day of what I did.

    One note I had the same thing you described the brownish green patches that "puff" when you brush and would reappear on a daily or two day basis, it is not dust or dirt or sand, it is bad, now that my pool got clean, the normal dirt, sand, etc, that goes in the pool does not look like that under water. If those patches keep appearing, you have not killed it. You should notice alot more of the green patches appearing where you have wrinkles in the liner because the water flow pushes most of it against the wrinkles were it sits and starts to grow again.

    I also bought some Polyquat 60, (algaecide, different name brands, I bought the Bioguard Algae All), suggested by the experts here, after I got it clean and it seems to have helped out alot so far. I am in south Louisiana and our humidity and weather is breeding ground for algae, so we have many more problems than others around the country. Btw, the Polyquat 60 is the chemical thats in whatever name brand you buy just make sure it says this which is the chemical name, tks to chemgeek, Poly{oxyethylene(dimethyliminio)Ethylene (dimethyliminio)ethylene dichloride} at 60% concentration

    Oh and if you have no bottom drain like me, brush, brush, brush, three or four times a day to get it up into the chlorinated water while shocking, and vacuum to waste the left overs and even some that it is having a hard time killing.

    eventually-i-will-get-the-hang-of-this-algae-t61589.html

    [attachment=0:3rxe7flp]NA410-AG-Pool-Light.jpg[/attachment:3rxe7flp]
    Attached Images Attached Images
    21 X 52 Sharkline Venture, 10,400 Gallons,
    Hayward Pro Series 18 Sand Filter, BBB Method, Leslies DPD Complete Chlorine Kit, Taylor K-1515-A - Drop Test, FAS-DPD Chlorine

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    That's a crazy story, I read through your thread and feel your pain. You were much more diligent than I have been, but I am trying.

    I had the same thought about drilling into the ladder, not only the steps but the main side rails also. I was afraid it would somehow affect the stability of the ladder and cause it to start floating up. If the water runs through it, and does not stay trapped, would it still weigh the ladder enough to keep it in place?
    10.5K gallon, AG vinyl, Hayward EC40 DE filter

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    copotay's Avatar
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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Yeah it was rough but I am reaping the benefits of the work now, its one of those things where I followed everything to the letter keeping everything in range, but it still bit me. It aint supposed to be that hard to have a pool I was beginning to think I was cursed, but all good now and going strong, "so far" I think I nipped it. I built it myself and fighting it was harder than building it.

    Btw, in my post you see the microscope I bought to see what I was fighting and learned from a test at the pool store and expert chemgeek that it sure was mustard. If you see the membrane, the round thick circle, surrounding the growth, thats what you are trying to penetrate with the chorine, thats why when it forms on the ground it has a protective layer that if you dont sweep, sweep, sweep, it will not destroy it by letting the chlorine attack it. I will tell you that in my opinion, when I went up to Mustard shock, the pool got hot, like the clorox was going to work at eating it up. Also, like I said in my post, even though you are clear you probably can see a greenish tint to the water along the edges and in the corners, that is what I think was the fine algae particles suspended in the water giving the tint even though you could see the bottom and it was pretty clear. I can tell you what you think is clear right now aint nothing like when you kill this stuff and the pool really clears. We have diving masks and when u go under it looks neon blue!!!

    Yes you might harm the integrity of the ladder with holes in the legs. What I did was take a 1/4 drill bit and enlarge the small weep holes of each step, there were two on each side of each step. My ladder does not have water in the legs, the steps fill with water to hold it down. I guess you could still drill holes in the legs, but I dont know how the water would come out of it unless there were holes all the way at the bottom, mine never had weep holes in the legs. Right now the flow of the water passes in and out of those big holes in the steps but again I am not taking a change and shoot some clorox into the holes once a week. I also made the holes big enough that I am able to take a garden hose pressure nozzle and stick it in the hole, blasting out anything in it, now nothing has come out since I made the holes larger. This is my ladder

    http://www.poolsupplyworld.com/Confer-P ... -6000B.htm

    The reason I say check the ladder is because of this small video I made as it was emptying out the water last year, and remember the pool was clear at the time but kept getting sick

    http://s39.photobucket.com/albums/e165/ ... nslime.mp4
    21 X 52 Sharkline Venture, 10,400 Gallons,
    Hayward Pro Series 18 Sand Filter, BBB Method, Leslies DPD Complete Chlorine Kit, Taylor K-1515-A - Drop Test, FAS-DPD Chlorine

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    That is the exact same ladder we have. Water in the steps and also in the legs, filled up with the hose from those bigger plugged holes near the top platform. I am going to take it out today and blast some bleach inside the steps and legs and see if that helps.

    Been draining and filling since 9am, and I can't tell any difference from that CYA test. If anything it seems like it would be getting worse, which I know is impossible because we removed the chlorinator last night so nothing would be adding stabilizer.
    10.5K gallon, AG vinyl, Hayward EC40 DE filter

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    Re: Algae won't stop

    For sure if you take it out and you drill your holes, blast some water in the holes and or the legs with this type nozzle
    [attachment=0:1gy0foz0]759a20db-edfc-4816-a8c5-6530c5b55cf3_300.jpg[/attachment:1gy0foz0]

    if you do have green in your ladder you cant watch it spurt out and that will be one of your contributing factors then I would put the straight clorox in it and let it sit for a couple of hours then blow it out with the nozzle. It is a shame us AGP people have to deal ladders like this that need water in them to stay down all in the mean time collecting algae to infect our pools. If I could find a solid metal one that had weight on the bottom to keep it down and not damage the vinyl liner, I would buy one.

    Believe it or not with my process of vacumming to waste and backwashing, I lost about a foot of water, and my CYA barely moved as I would keep checking it to get it back to normal. So it might take a quite a bit of water removal to get it done. Thats why most of the experts in here maintain that you add CYA with a sock over the return and advocate bleach for chlorine so you can control whats in your pool. Thats why the higher the CYA the more clorox u need to use to have normal levels, shock, or mustard shock. They refer to it as the CYA/Chlorine relationship. Btw, I had a hard time figuring out the CYA with the little dot too until I got used to it. Also if no one mentioned it always read your test with natural light, (sunlight), from what I read in here, it gives you more accurate readings. I always stick my hand in the water about two feet down, move the water around and then get my sample, just from the surface might give you false readings because of circulation problems.

    Another note worth mentioning is circulation, us with above ground pools, one return and one skimmer, have for the most part terrible circulation. I had to move my return around until I found an adequate area that really moved all the water, I found down at the floor and to the right help tremensously. Alot of people like to have their jet pointed to the right and a little at the surface that shows the ripples in the water, but that does not help move that water at the bottom to get it up to the skimmer. I even replaced by normal return with a 45 degree pvc 3/4 elbow that I can move and aim where I want, kinda sticks out, but I can push the water where I want.

    Also be aware of dead spots, thats where the water may not move well and you might have a concentration of chemical, whichever chemical, CYA, chlorine, etc, example is I tested one time 1 foot down without moving the water just filling the tube, gave me a TC of 4, went on the other side of the pool, went two feet down, shook the water and got another sample, TC of 7. That is poor circulation.

    Keep at it, dont give up, it will work although it doesnt seem like it now, they made me a true beleiver in here
    Attached Images Attached Images
    21 X 52 Sharkline Venture, 10,400 Gallons,
    Hayward Pro Series 18 Sand Filter, BBB Method, Leslies DPD Complete Chlorine Kit, Taylor K-1515-A - Drop Test, FAS-DPD Chlorine

  16. Back To Top    #16
    copotay's Avatar
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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Here is a picture I just took of it going on 5 days no problems, (knock on wood)
    [attachment=1:yk142txa]pool2.jpg[/attachment:yk142txa]

    Here is a little 2 x 6 wood platform I built to help go around the pool and get test water, vacuum, remove leaves etc, this helps alot when you dont have the money to build a deck all around it, especially when you cant get in the water in winter to remove debris.
    [attachment=0:yk142txa]photo.JPG[/attachment:yk142txa]
    Attached Images Attached Images
    21 X 52 Sharkline Venture, 10,400 Gallons,
    Hayward Pro Series 18 Sand Filter, BBB Method, Leslies DPD Complete Chlorine Kit, Taylor K-1515-A - Drop Test, FAS-DPD Chlorine

  17. Back To Top    #17
    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Algae won't stop

    That's a great platform copotay I have wondered how people test their 52-54 inch pools (mine is 48 so no problem for me) when they don't have a deck. Your design looks nice and light and easy to pick up with the handle
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    copotay's Avatar
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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Tks, especially for my son and wife who are shorter than me, makes it a whole lot easier than dragging a step ladder around
    21 X 52 Sharkline Venture, 10,400 Gallons,
    Hayward Pro Series 18 Sand Filter, BBB Method, Leslies DPD Complete Chlorine Kit, Taylor K-1515-A - Drop Test, FAS-DPD Chlorine

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Re: Algae won't stop

    OK, I followed your lead and attacked my ladder. After I took it out of the pool and tipped it over some green sludge and some orange particles came out. Not a solid stream of gunk like in your video, but mostly clear water with floaters in it. I tore the entire ladder into pieces, removed every step and snap in connection. I injected every opening with straight 8.25 bleach, let it sit a few mins, then filled each opening with water and sloshed it around. I drilled drainage holes in each of the steps, and rinsed every part one more time before putting it back together. I don't know if that solves my problem completely, but there was definitely stuff in there so a thorough cleaning can't hurt.

    Going to let the pump turn the water over for a few hours since we were draining and filling today, then test cya and chlorine and go up to mustard shock level overnight and through tomorrow. If that doesn't work I guess I need to sell the house.
    10.5K gallon, AG vinyl, Hayward EC40 DE filter

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    copotay's Avatar
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    Re: Algae won't stop

    Don't sell your house, just the pool!!! Just kidding, I know it's frustrating as heck just follow the steps and you have a head start because you have that DE filter whereas I had enhance my sand with DE to eventually get it clean. Just once you mustard shock it make sure you get it all. I did not put the ladder in until I got it clear and clean but that's your choice, it made it easier to brush around where it was at since you have to brush alot. Did I say brush, brush, brush, and don't forget to do your walls. It's very important once you bring it to mustard to overbrush. I would brush it then four hours later it was building up on the bottom again, so I would brush it again. Remember as its killing stuff it's using up your Clorox do I checked it like three times in the first 24 and it dropped like 6 points in 6 hours do I brought it back to 24. Oh and it uses a lot of chemical when your testing that high but somewhere in the forum there are directions to cut it with distilled water so you don't have to use as much chemical. You have the right idea though get the CYA down before you go mustard so it doesn't take as high a level to work and save some bleach and chemical.

    You didn't mention if you had a light but if u do check it and also remember the foam insert in the skimmer door. I took my whole door off and leave it off. If its like mine it's on two little hinges where I found some more too. It just pops off but take care to gently pop it off if you do so u don't break it.

    I don't know how DE filters work or how you backwash them, but my DE mixed with sand would backwash light green then clear as I was clearing the pool. FYI, on one occasion I turned it off to clean the skimmer and without back washing I turned it back on and it shot a green cloud back into the water then blew clear. I should have known better.
    21 X 52 Sharkline Venture, 10,400 Gallons,
    Hayward Pro Series 18 Sand Filter, BBB Method, Leslies DPD Complete Chlorine Kit, Taylor K-1515-A - Drop Test, FAS-DPD Chlorine

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