Algae drove me to this site

IL_WS

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2012
125
IL, NW of Chicago
Got my 1st pool this summer. Loved it in the heat! 24' above ground, round, Nature2 mineral system, cartridge filter.

Everything was going well until we were gone for a long weekend over Labor day weekend. Chlorine tabs ran out, and there was a little algae near some leaves (may have been poor circulation area). Liquid chlorine shocked the pool (>10 from the dip sticks) Vacuumed the area, and everything seemed good for about a week. Then it the pool bottom turned green. I vacuumed/brushed everything again (a much bigger area affected this time). The next day, the pool was all green. I added half a quart of polyquat 60 (spelling), and have watched it turn greener over the last week.

All this being said, algae has driven me to this site. I ordered a TF-100 kit today. I previously had a dip stick for FC, and a dropper for TC. I will post numbers once I get them, and follow the directions for a green swamp.

Concerning directions for a swamp:
  • - when I brush, is that just brushing, or brush and vacuum, or brush with the vacuum?
    - looking at my schedule, how many consecutive days should I expect to make sure I can brush at least once a day?
    - I don't have a heater (Chicago), so water is getting cold. Can I do an adequate job from outside< or do I have to bear it from within for a better brush job?
    - do I need to know what type of algae it is (green or mustard), or just assume mustard shock levels?

I am encouraged by the stories of success from this page. I will be one of them shortly!
 

JohnT

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Apr 4, 2007
9,830
SW Indiana
Brushing daily for a few days should be sufficient. It can really speed things along. Vacuuming can help too, but just breaking the algae loose and stirring things up will help.

You won't have to get in.

Mustard algae usually shows up in the shaded part of the pool, so assume it is plain old green algae.

The really important thing is to maintain a constant high chlorine level, with the emphasis on constant.
 

IL_WS

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2012
125
IL, NW of Chicago
Thanks for your quick replies. Hopefully, I will receive the TF-100 by this weekend. I will spend Saturday afternoon, and parts of Sunday monitoring and adjusting FC. Will 2 days of regular checks and adjustments be adequate, or do I have to find a time when I have more days? I will not be nearly as available on Monday due to work and other commitments.
 

fast1971chevelle

Well-known member
Apr 15, 2012
456
SW Ohio
Shocking your pool is going to take several day and maybe weeks to get it back to a sparkly blue pool. I suggest you go read pool school a few times and read the shocking your pool section there as it will explain how to properly shock. Remember your pool did not get this way in a couple of days therefore it can't be cleaned in that time frame either......Mike
 

IL_WS

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2012
125
IL, NW of Chicago
Got my TF100, and made my 1st set of measurements:
FC 2
CC 0.5
TA 110 (blue)
CH 50
CYA 50
PH 7.8

I still have algae on the bottom of the pool. It got much better than a week ago, where now I can actually see the bottom of the pool.

I will remove the trichlor pucks from the system, and adjust chlorine with bleach. From these numbers, I will maintain algae level shock of 29 until the FC drops by less than 1 overnight. I will also remove the ladder to clean it separately, and brush the pool down at least once a day.

The CYA was higher than I thought. Possibly due to half a season of trichlor. I will leave it here since I will be reducing volume in a little bit anyway due to cold weather (Chicago).

Anything else?
 

IL_WS

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2012
125
IL, NW of Chicago
Prior to noticing my replies, I attached my algae Saturday. I added enough bleach that should have raised my FC to 29. I tested an hour later and it was 23. I added more bleach and retested an hour later. My FC was 30.

I spent most of the next hour slowly vacuuming the pool bottom. This is really much easier from inside the pool, but I managed from the ground or ladder for slight elevation.

The pool looked much better after this, but was still grrenish. By sunset, my FC had dropped to 28.5. The next working before sunrise, I again measured FC of 28.5. I was rushed and forgot to test for CC. Later in the day, the water was finally blue again. Although not by any means clear, the blueness was very encouraging.

I have not added any bleach (also removed trichlor tabs) since Saturday. My FC is now down to 14. I will continue to let it drop to 8 (upper range of target normal range), then retest everything. In particular, CYA seemed tricky (I think my brain can "see" the dot when it is in fact not visible), and exact color distinction for PH was hard.

Concerning pH:
  • - Why should I decrease this? I see ranges as either being 7.5-7.8, or 7.2-7.8.
    - The last 2 posters recommended reducing pH prior to attacking algae; have I messed anything up by not completing this step first?
    - I am going to winterize as soon as my pool cover is delivered; I know I will need to lower pH in the spring when I add more water (took 2 gallons of acid with all new water), so can I just wait to attach pH then?
 

IL_WS

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2012
125
IL, NW of Chicago
I just reread the algae article. I don't know when I started forgetting simple steps. I understand that shocking can increase pH. I will wait for FC levels to continue dropping to normal levels (<8) before retesting pH.

During the shock process, I also neglected to vacuum/brush the pool walls. Furthermore, I vacuumed only Saturday, not yesterday. I was elated by the lack of drop in FC overnight, and stopped there. I will brush the entire pool again today, and check FC and CC levels after sunset and before sunrise at whatever FC level I have.
 

IL_WS

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2012
125
IL, NW of Chicago
Tested balance again after brushing everything down yesterday afternoon:
dusk dawn
FC 11.5 12.0
CC 0.5 0.5
pH 8.0

The water is still clear since Sunday (not green, but not crystal clear). I think the dead algae is still being processed by the cartridge filter. Been filtering 24/7 since bringing pool to mustard algae level Saturday.

From the OCLT test, CC being 0.5 or less, and clear water, I have defeated this outbreak of algae. Is this correct, or does the water need to be clearer?

I would like to winterize the pool as soon as my cover gets here (need to learn more there). Do I need to reduce the pH prior to winterizing? I would just as soon not reduce the pH to dump 20% of it in a few days. Will this elevated pH have any adverse affects for winter storage?