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Thread: Mustard algae

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    Mustard algae

    Hello all. I'm new to TFP and fairly new to pool ownership. We actually installed our 18x36 Vinyl salt water pool last July.

    Currently, my pool water is Crystal clear but I have this brown looking sediment in the creases and along the seam lines. Not really knowing any better I took a water sample to my local pool supply store and they advised me to pour 5 lbs of shock in the deep end of the pool and brush. I did this and ran my robotic cleaner daily for a full week. The brown sediment will cloud up and disappiate when brushed but seems to settle back close to the same areas.

    I researched the TFP site today and just ordered the recommended Taylor test kit. I'm not sure that I understand the slam process yet but plan to make a go of it once I receive my test kit. I will probably rely heavily on you guys recommendations and guidance to hopefully get rid of this. I'm really stressing about it right now because I really don't know much about proper pool maintenance but want my pool to look nice and clean. If anyone can offer any advice, I sure would appreciate it.

    My pool is a vinyl 18x36 SWG, approx 24,500 gallons. I tried to list all my information in the signature but it wouldn't allow me to do it on my phone.

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    needsajet's Avatar
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    Re: Mustard algae

    Welcome to TFP! Good to have you here Ordering the test kit is great first step. You'll also need a way to test your salt when you get the chance. Salt can be adequately tested with test strips, but many people prefer a Taylor K-1766 for more reliable results.

    Be sure to read and follow the written instructions for a SLAM when you get your kit. The video is there as an illustration, but the written instructions can be printed out to be handy to refer to. When I SLAM, I adjust pH to 7.2 as the first step for the SLAM.

    There may be a "show my signature" checkbox

    There's a link in my signature "TFPC for Beginners". I found the first two posts very helpful when I started out.

    Thanks for joining TFP
    12k IG salt; glass beads in plaster; K-2006C, K-1766, K-1106 and CCL test kits; Pentair Eco800 1.2HP VS; Zodiac SWCG 1.3 lb/day (25 g/hr); 25" filter recycled glass; OKU solar panels; 1/2 HP solar pump; Rebel (Warrior) pool cleaner; FlowViz; Other family pools 10K SWCG and 15K on liquid; PoolMath app subscriber; | Read Before Posting to get the best possible advice | ... and this helped me a lot!: TFPC for Beginners

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Quote Originally Posted by dparker4201 View Post
    Hello all. I'm new to TFP and fairly new to pool ownership. We actually installed our 18x36 Vinyl salt water pool last July.

    Currently, my pool water is Crystal clear but I have this brown looking sediment in the creases and along the seam lines. Not really knowing any better I took a water sample to my local pool supply store and they advised me to pour 5 lbs of shock in the deep end of the pool and brush. I did this and ran my robotic cleaner daily for a full week. The brown sediment will cloud up and disappiate when brushed but seems to settle back close to the same areas.

    I researched the TFP site today and just ordered the recommended Taylor test kit. I'm not sure that I understand the slam process yet but plan to make a go of it once I receive my test kit. I will probably rely heavily on you guys recommendations and guidance to hopefully get rid of this. I'm really stressing about it right now because I really don't know much about proper pool maintenance but want my pool to look nice and clean. If anyone can offer any advice, I sure would appreciate it.

    My pool is a vinyl 18x36 SWG, approx 24,500 gallons. I tried to list all my information in the signature but it wouldn't allow me to do it on my phone.
    Welcome to the forum!

    Your descriptions are textbook for the beginnings of an algae bloom, and the reason that you are having this problem is because there is not enough sanitizer (chlorine) in your pool.

    Chlorine oxidizes (attacks) organics like algae & bacteria and in that process is quickly depleted from your pool water. Your SWG will struggle to replenish the chlorine lost to fighting algae, and will eventually lose the fight as the algae reproduces faster than it is being killed.

    We kill algae by performing the SLAM Procedure

    Moving forward, stop using solid forms of chlorine as the additional chemicals they add to the pool (calcium or CYA aka stabilizer) can just complicate things. Over-stabilized pool are hard to manage and require higher levels of chlorine to remain sanitized.

    Your new best friend is liquid chlorine, aka bleach. While bleach can be purchased at the pool store in 10 or 12.5% strength, it can also be found as regular good ol' laundry bleach, which is 8.25% strength. Using bleach will only add chlorine and a trace amount of salt to your pool. in your 24,500 gallon pool, 36oz of 8.25% laundry bleach will raise your Free Chlorine level by 1ppm.

    To properly maintain these chlorine levels, a FAS/DPD chlorine test kit is recommended. The FAS/DPD test is the industry standard in accuracy and reliability, and will help you keep your pool clean & clear, saving you money as you avoid un-necessary chemicals that the pool $tore will push on you. We recommend two test kits that provide the tests needed to properly maintain your pool, the TF-100 from TF Testkits, or the Taylor K2006. The TF-100 really is the best value as it contains more of the testing supplies that regularly use. I recommend that you take the first step in properly managing your pool yourself and order one of those kits.

    http://tftestkits.net/TF-100-Test-Kit-p4.html

    Please be sure to read through the info in the link mentioned by needsajet, and ask any questions you may have.

    If you decide to follow TFP guidelines you will be rewarded with sparkling clear water and a pool that is very easy to manage, especially with a SWG. The pool will truly be Trouble Free.

    It's nice to have you with us.
    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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    Re: Mustard algae

    Thanks guys! I have ordered the Taylor FAS/DPD K2006 kit and it should be here Friday. I will post numbers once I receive the kit and feel like I'm getting accurate numbers. I'm really worried about this mustard algae, as it seems a lot of folks on here have to battle this stuff for awhile. I have read so much information about it that my head is actually spinning right now. I have formatted a plan to hopefully attack it once I know what my readings are in the pool.

    1. Check Pool readings and adjust as necessary.
    2. Start the SLAM process. Running pump 24/7.
    3. I'm going to put all pool equipment, (ie; brush, net, robot cleaner, etc), in the shallow end of the pool during slamming to sanitize them.
    4. Maintain shock level until CC is 0.5 ppm or less.
    5. Brush pool at least twice a day.
    5. Check to see if I pass an Over night chlorine test.
    6. Raise FC to MA shock level and hold for 24 hours.
    7. Let FC drift back down on its on and maintain a FC 5 to 7.

    If anyone thinks I need to change anything about my plan, please let me know. Like I said I'm a newbie and can only hope that I'm doing this correctly.

    Also, from my calculations this is going to take a lot of 8.25% bleach. I'm not sure that I calculated right on the pool calculator.

    Thanks again!

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Quote Originally Posted by dparker4201 View Post
    Thanks guys! I have ordered the Taylor FAS/DPD K2006 kit and it should be here Friday. I will post numbers once I receive the kit and feel like I'm getting accurate numbers. I'm really worried about this mustard algae, as it seems a lot of folks on here have to battle this stuff for awhile. I have read so much information about it that my head is actually spinning right now. I have formatted a plan to hopefully attack it once I know what my readings are in the pool.

    1. Check Pool readings and adjust as necessary.
    2. Start the SLAM process. Running pump 24/7.
    3. I'm going to put all pool equipment, (ie; brush, net, robot cleaner, etc), in the shallow end of the pool during slamming to sanitize them.
    4. Maintain shock level until CC is 0.5 ppm or less. And the water is clear and free of any algae, dead or alive.
    5. Brush pool at least twice a day.
    5. Check to see if I pass an Over night chlorine test.
    6. Raise FC to MA shock level and hold for 24 hours.
    7. Let FC drift back down on its on and maintain a FC 5 to 7.

    If anyone thinks I need to change anything about my plan, please let me know. Like I said I'm a newbie and can only hope that I'm doing this correctly.

    Also, from my calculations this is going to take a lot of 8.25% bleach. I'm not sure that I calculated right on the pool calculator.

    Thanks again!
    Why do you think you have mustard algae? From your descriptions I think you just have regular old green algae.
    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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    Re: Mustard algae

    I believe I have mustard algae because of the information I have obtained from research on the internet. The spots look like sand on the pool floor but will cloud up and vanish when hit by the brush. It will eventually re-settle along the seams and creases of the liner. I have took a picture yesterday of the sediment on the pool floor but I have no idea how to upload it to this forum.


    The pool water is not cloudy or green at all. The pool water actually looks really good but this sandy looking sediment will not go away on the pool floor. I'm only assuming its mustard algae based on the information I have read. Like I said in my earlier post, I'm really a newbie at this and may be way off track.

    I don't have a manual vacuum for my pool, so will the robot cleaner suffice in picking dead algae off the pool floor? I assume most of the dead algae will go through the filter but I'm sure some will settle on the bottom.
    IG vinyl 18x36 SWG, 24,200 gallons, Sand Filter, Maytronics Dolphin robot cleaner, Taylor FAS-DPD K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Mustard algae

    TFP Supporters get the ability to upload and store pictures on the TFP servers. If you are not a supporter, then you need to use a photo hosting and sharing service like Google Photos and then use the "Insert Image" button to add photos via a URL link.

    As to your mustard algae problem, it's hard to diagnose without a good picture. One way to see it would be to use a turkey baster or similar suction bulb device to try to suck up some of the algae and then squirt it onto a white paper towel. Mustard algae will look brownish/yellow-green while regular algae will look more of a blue-green color. Sand and pollen look more brown colored.

    Your robot will be unlikely to vacuum it up as it will disturb the algae before it gets to it. You can certainly SLAM your pool if you are failing OCLT and then use the M/A shock level at the end of the process. We're just trying to save you the time and money of doing that if it's unnecessary.
    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Mustard algae

    I appreciate all the help I can get! I will try to upload the picture soon and maybe you guys can tell if its green algae or mustard algae. I have just compared it to some of the pictures I found on other websites and thought it was probably mustard algae. I wish someone would just tell me its pollen!

    Okay, so I guess I need to purchase a manual vacuum? The pool builder told me the robot would be the only vacuum I would ever need... Any suggestions on the best value manual vacuum? I'm already a $150 in this spring from buying unnecessary chemicals from pool store and buying the Taylor test kit.

    Thanks again guys for all of your help! I'm sure I'm going to have lots more questions before this is over.
    IG vinyl 18x36 SWG, 24,200 gallons, Sand Filter, Maytronics Dolphin robot cleaner, Taylor FAS-DPD K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Mustard algae

    IMG_20170403_183644808.jpg

    Here is the picture of the brownish looking sediment on the pool floor. Any ideas?
    IG vinyl 18x36 SWG, 24,200 gallons, Sand Filter, Maytronics Dolphin robot cleaner, Taylor FAS-DPD K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Is that along a seem?


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Mustard algae

    I don't believe that particular shot is at the seam, but I do have more that tends to run along the seam or in creases. Some of it is just laying on the pool floor in random spots.
    IG vinyl 18x36 SWG, 24,200 gallons, Sand Filter, Maytronics Dolphin robot cleaner, Taylor FAS-DPD K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Quote Originally Posted by dparker4201 View Post
    1. Check Pool readings and adjust as necessary.
    2. Start the SLAM process. Running pump 24/7.
    3. I'm going to put all pool equipment, (ie; brush, net, robot cleaner, etc), in the shallow end of the pool during slamming to sanitize them.
    4. Maintain shock level until CC is 0.5 ppm or less.
    5. Brush pool at least twice a day.
    5. Check to see if I pass an Over night chlorine test.
    6. Raise FC to MA shock level and hold for 24 hours.
    7. Let FC drift back down on its on and maintain a FC 5 to 7.

    Also, from my calculations this is going to take a lot of 8.25% bleach. I'm not sure that I calculated right on the pool calculator.
    Good plan, you've definitely been doing the reading . I'll just add that there are advantages to adjusting pH to 7.2 before starting.

    You can shop around for a higher concentration of chlorinating liquid, which will save you some carrying (of water). You should be able to find 10% or 12.5% sodium hypochlorite. These threads have some ideas for local sources:
    2017 Bleach Prices
    2016 bleach prices

    Good luck with the SLAM.
    12k IG salt; glass beads in plaster; K-2006C, K-1766, K-1106 and CCL test kits; Pentair Eco800 1.2HP VS; Zodiac SWCG 1.3 lb/day (25 g/hr); 25" filter recycled glass; OKU solar panels; 1/2 HP solar pump; Rebel (Warrior) pool cleaner; FlowViz; Other family pools 10K SWCG and 15K on liquid; PoolMath app subscriber; | Read Before Posting to get the best possible advice | ... and this helped me a lot!: TFPC for Beginners

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Thanks needsajet for the link to 2017 bleach prices. I will certainly adjust PH to 7.2 before I start the SLAM.
    IG vinyl 18x36 SWG, 24,200 gallons, Sand Filter, Maytronics Dolphin robot cleaner, Taylor FAS-DPD K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Mustard algae

    This is great bang for the buck:

    1. Become a TroubleFreePool.com supporter
    - modest, one-time tax-deductible donation, which also gives you a discount coupon at TFTestKits as one of the perks

    2. Order the TF-100 test kit and Speed Stirrer (puts you just over $100 which gets you free shipping). This will give you FAS-DPD FC testing, which you need for the SLAM.

    Or... you can also just order the FAS-DPD dedicated test kit for less money, which enables a SLAM to be done.

    I hope you join up, and enjoy the savings when your test kit pays for itself by June.
    12k IG salt; glass beads in plaster; K-2006C, K-1766, K-1106 and CCL test kits; Pentair Eco800 1.2HP VS; Zodiac SWCG 1.3 lb/day (25 g/hr); 25" filter recycled glass; OKU solar panels; 1/2 HP solar pump; Rebel (Warrior) pool cleaner; FlowViz; Other family pools 10K SWCG and 15K on liquid; PoolMath app subscriber; | Read Before Posting to get the best possible advice | ... and this helped me a lot!: TFPC for Beginners

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Okay guys, I received my Taylor K-2006 test kit today. I performed my first test after reading instructions and watching YouTube videos. I feel very confident in the readings.
    FC - 5.5
    CC - 0.5
    PH - 7.8
    TA -70
    CH - 160 does this really matter with a vinyl pool?
    CYA - 40 - This is a little low. I just added 4 lbs a week ago.
    Pool Temp - 64 degrees

    The brown sediment that I posted in the picture above has seemed to gone away. I have been running my filter 8 hours a day and using the robot cleaner daily. I'm really hoping that maybe it was just dirt or pollen that had settled. I will watch it over the next several days, hoping it doesn't show back up.

    My next question is do you think I should still perform the slam even though my pool is Crystal clear and the test readings look good?

    I would also like to say I have learned a lot since finding TFP. I plan to follow the BBB method from this point forward. Thanks to all for offering great advice and being helpful. I'm sure I will have plenty of questions in the future.

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    Re: Mustard algae

    CH is fine. The only reason I'd raise it if you have a SWG.

    Don't SLAM if you don't believe you have to. You can do an OCLT to be sure. Don't waste the effort or chlorinating liquid. Trouble is, you knew you had algae, and that's plenty of reason to SLAM. I'd do it. If there's no algae there, it will over in two days.

    People here don't say BBB much, they use Trouble Free Pool Care (TFPC). Reason being, there may never need one or any of the Bs, bleach, borax or baking soda. Doesn't really matter though. Glad to hear you got the kit
    12k IG salt; glass beads in plaster; K-2006C, K-1766, K-1106 and CCL test kits; Pentair Eco800 1.2HP VS; Zodiac SWCG 1.3 lb/day (25 g/hr); 25" filter recycled glass; OKU solar panels; 1/2 HP solar pump; Rebel (Warrior) pool cleaner; FlowViz; Other family pools 10K SWCG and 15K on liquid; PoolMath app subscriber; | Read Before Posting to get the best possible advice | ... and this helped me a lot!: TFPC for Beginners

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Dparker, I was in your shoes for 23 days up until yesterday when I finally passed OCLT. I'm convinced I had MA as previous algae blooms didn't look like this or last this long (I live on Gulf Coast BTW). First, don't raise your CYA. 40 is as high as you want to be during SLAM. However check it regularly (every few days) during SLAM. Reason being mine was at 55-60 after my initial add but drifted down to 40-45 a couple weeks later. I didn't drain. Had some rain and manually added some water but that's it. So depending on when it changed I was shocking at regular SLAM levels for a couple weeks and then at MA level the last week. I felt like I made zero progress until the last two days (stayed at MA level for about 36 hrs) and then BOOM. Crystal clear Oasis. Passed the OCLT at 22 and then again at 17. Am now allowing my FC to SLOWLY drift back down. Mine looked just like yours - sediment only visible along seams and bumps and a sparse cloud when brushing. I could never get a sample. My water was clear the entire time but not SPARKLING. There's a difference. You want to be able to tell heads or tails on a quarter on the pool bottom and the surface sparkles & shimmers in the sun. I also did not vacuum to waste but I did brush 3-5X a day. Am crossing fingers that it doesn't return. By the way I never had CC but couldn't pass the OCLT. This is the only way I knew it was algae and not pollen (also clear but not SPARKLING water).

    30k gal, IG, vinyl, Pentair Tagelus TA 60D sand

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Oh and one more thing in case this hasn't been mentioned...go ahead and buy a larger quantity R-0871 regent because the one in the kit will get used up FAST. May as well go ahead and buy another thing of the powder while you're at it. This stuff won't go to waste if you test daily throughout the summer. Oh and make sure you clean EVERYWHERE. I was in my pool every other day with my wetsuit and mask/snorkel and a toothbrush. Found nesting places behind the light and inside the ladder legs. That stuff will hide out anywhere it can! Evil, evil algae.
    30k gal, IG, vinyl, Pentair Tagelus TA 60D sand

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Aralph, thanks for the info. The crazy thing is I had this brown sediment on the pool floor but now that I have been running the filter more and running the robot daily, it's gone.

    I'm going to do the OCLT just to make sure but if I can pass that I'll probably not do the SLAM. If I see any signs of the sediment again, I will immediately start the SLAM. Hopefully it wasn't mustard algae!

    I will order some more regent in case I have to do the SLAM. Glad to hear yours has finally come to a close and hopefully you won't have to deal with it anymore. I have heard so many horror stories about not getting it all and having to fight it all summer long. I hope neither of us have to do that because that would be miserable.

    Thanks again!

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    Re: Mustard algae

    Quote Originally Posted by dparker4201 View Post
    Aralph, thanks for the info. The crazy thing is I had this brown sediment on the pool floor but now that I have been running the filter more and running the robot daily, it's gone.

    I'm going to do the OCLT just to make sure but if I can pass that I'll probably not do the SLAM. If I see any signs of the sediment again, I will immediately start the SLAM. Hopefully it wasn't mustard algae!

    I will order some more regent in case I have to do the SLAM. Glad to hear yours has finally come to a close and hopefully you won't have to deal with it anymore. I have heard so many horror stories about not getting it all and having to fight it all summer long. I hope neither of us have to do that because that would be miserable.

    Thanks again!
    I'm with you. I've still got some sediment too but passing OCLT so no longer shocking. I allowed FC to slowly drift back down to normal levels, but FC dropped after I added too much water. Went from 9 to 7.5 after the add and down to 5.5 the following day. Added one bottle of bleach and still passed the OCLT. Not sure what to make of the sediment so I just keep sweeping and watching FC like a hawk.
    30k gal, IG, vinyl, Pentair Tagelus TA 60D sand

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