Does this sound like black algae?

Aug 11, 2020
6
Wilmington NC
Hi all! I’m looking for some help. We had a pool installed this past May, so it’s only 3 months old. It’s a 21’ above ground salt water pool. Everything has been going great until one day I was vacuuming the pool. I hadn’t vacuumed in like a week because it was a busy week. While vacuuming, I noticed that some of it wasn’t coming up so I kind of rubbed it with my foot. This worked mostly it maybe felt a tiny bit slimy? I didn’t think much of it and I didn’t think to backwash because I had a friend come over and I just forgot. After we were done using the pool, I set it to super chlorinate and scrubbed the pool some. They cleaned it all up and all was well. Since then, for the past 2 weeks, I learned about black algae. (I had never heard of it before) so I determined this is what I have. I’ve shocked and shocked and scrubbed and backwashed like a bajillion times. I vacuumed several times to waste. The substance itself just moves right off the liner. It doesn’t stick at all if I lightly brush it. There is some build up in the vinyl seam, but I scrub it and it goes away. I’ve treated it with Leslie’s black algae treatment and shocked some more. The stuff keeps reappearing. My husband is convinced that it’s just dirt particles since it moves easily but it’s always in the same spots. My main question is: does black algae stick to the liner? Or would I be able to just lightly brush it and it just kind of dissipate? Also, I feel like my pool is just a giant pool of chemicals at this point. We got salt water because we didn’t want to deal with chemicals. When is it safe to actually swim again? (I have added salt, bleach, calcium hypochlorite, Murciatic acid, baking soda, Clorox algaecide, Leslie’s black algae killer, pho’s free, and clarifier all in the past 2/3 weeks) I’ve also been vacuuming to waste and tipping off several times.
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
14,579
Evans, Georgia
Jilliebean, welcome to TroubleFreePools......we can save you a LOT of money by saying just this: STOP BUYING ALL POOL STORE CHEMICALS!!
:laughblue: <whew!> You've got a chemical soup going on there, I'm sorry to say. Got that outta the way, thanks.

Black algae, I believe would have a hard time setting up house in a new smooth vinyl pool. It tends to liike the nooks and crevices of plaster better. Now you very well may have algae.... can't know without proper testing.

Save yourself a headache of searching online and just order up this test kit - TF-100, sold by a mom and pop business out of NC that put together this kit to match our method of pool care. Yeah, its $70, but will last up to 2 years and has EXACTLY the tests you need.
www.tftestkits.net
Alternatively you can hunt online for a Taylor K-2006C, but it *must* be the 2006 version, not a 2005. And those do cost more than the TF-100.

Then we need to know:
FC
CC
pH
TA
CH
CYA
Salt if applicable

Do not put anything else into that pool except 1 gallon of PLAIN LIQUID CHLORINE per day, and brush it all around and on the walls too. You can find Liquid CHlorine at Walmart in the pool section, or at Lowes/HD, or labeled "Liquid Shock" from the pool store <cough-cough>. NO Clorox products please. Plain, unscented, non-thickened, non-Cloromax technology bleach can be used also.

Yeah, algae will die and land on the floor *which poofs away* so vacuum it out s-l-o-w-l-y. It does like to get caught in the wrinkles.

You've put things in that pool we NEVER recommend as they contain copper and other gooey things that can mess with your filter.

Please fill out a signature line, order up one of those test kits and get back to use with your results.

I'll be watching for them.

Maddie
 
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Reactions: Jilliebean3590
Aug 11, 2020
6
Wilmington NC
Jilliebean, welcome to TroubleFreePools......we can save you a LOT of money by saying just this: STOP BUYING ALL POOL STORE CHEMICALS!!
:laughblue: <whew!> You've got a chemical soup going on there, I'm sorry to say. Got that outta the way, thanks.

Black algae, I believe would have a hard time setting up house in a new smooth vinyl pool. It tends to liike the nooks and crevices of plaster better. Now you very well may have algae.... can't know without proper testing.

Save yourself a headache of searching online and just order up this test kit - TF-100, sold by a mom and pop business out of NC that put together this kit to match our method of pool care. Yeah, its $70, but will last up to 2 years and has EXACTLY the tests you need.
www.tftestkits.net
Alternatively you can hunt online for a Taylor K-2006C, but it *must* be the 2006 version, not a 2005. And those do cost more than the TF-100.

Then we need to know:
FC
CC
pH
TA
CH
CYA
Salt if applicable

Do not put anything else into that pool except 1 gallon of PLAIN LIQUID CHLORINE per day, and brush it all around and on the walls too. You can find Liquid CHlorine at Walmart in the pool section, or at Lowes/HD, or labeled "Liquid Shock" from the pool store <cough-cough>. NO Clorox products please. Plain, unscented, non-thickened, non-Cloromax technology bleach can be used also.

Yeah, algae will die and land on the floor *which poofs away* so vacuum it out s-l-o-w-l-y. It does like to get caught in the wrinkles.

You've put things in that pool we NEVER recommend as they contain copper and other gooey things that can mess with your filter.

Please fill out a signature line, order up one of those test kits and get back to use with your results.

I'll be watching for them.

Maddie
Ok, buying the test kit. Right now, I only have the 3way test kit from Walmart. PH looks good now. Chlorine is high. Like above the color chart high. I guess this is a good thing. I usually take it to Leslie’s pool store for testing. They’re the ones that told me it probably was black algae because my phosphates were so high.
How do I get rid of all these chemicals? I also have a metal remover pack in the skimmer that Leslie’s told me I would need after using the algaecide. I’m a hot mess.
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
14,579
Evans, Georgia
Leslies pool store testing isn't worth the money they charge for it. Free. Its usually inaccurate and geared to sell you something.

They're stupid for suggesting black algae on a brand new VINYL pool.

Phosphates *are* algae food.. but in our mind if a pool doesn't have algae, who cares if the food is there?! I haven't ever had algae in 9 years of pool ownership, thanks to TFP. We ONLY put in to our water the simpliest chemicals it needs, in the most basic form. Believe it or not some cities actually add phosphates to city water as a way to protect aging pipes.....

The metal pack (CuLator?) may or may not do anything, but it won't do enough usually. Its like they tell you to put something bad in the water then sell you the cure for the bad potion. Kinda crazy, eh?

Algaecides are rarely advised, usually only when folks way up north close their pools for winter. They're pretty weak and won't kill algae much but *may* help you avoid it.

Dabble in to Pool School and the forums.... soak it in while waiting for your test kit.

Glad you're here!

Maddie
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
14,579
Evans, Georgia
if you're on a computer look under your screenname up at the top right.. or under the Settings on the left side panel.

See under my name in the above post?- it tells us something about your pool, its equipment, how you sanitize and test, etc. SO we don't have to ask again and again when our feeble minds forget ;) Look at others' posts for ideas on how to do it.

M.
 
Aug 11, 2020
6
Wilmington NC
Leslies pool store testing isn't worth the money they charge for it. Free. Its usually inaccurate and geared to sell you something.

They're stupid for suggesting black algae on a brand new VINYL pool.

Phosphates *are* algae food.. but in our mind if a pool doesn't have algae, who cares if the food is there?! I haven't ever had algae in 9 years of pool ownership, thanks to TFP. We ONLY put in to our water the simpliest chemicals it needs, in the most basic form. Believe it or not some cities actually add phosphates to city water as a way to protect aging pipes.....

The metal pack (CuLator?) may or may not do anything, but it won't do enough usually. Its like they tell you to put something bad in the water then sell you the cure for the bad potion. Kinda crazy, eh?

Algaecides are rarely advised, usually only when folks way up north close their pools for winter. They're pretty weak and won't kill algae much but *may* help you avoid it.

Dabble in to Pool School and the forums.... soak it in while waiting for your test kit.

Glad you're here!

Maddie
ok, so Leslie’s is a bad idea. I have heard that they will sell you all of the things. Which seems to be what has happened here. 😕 So, should I drain my whole pool and restart? How do I get this copper algae killer out?
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
14,579
Evans, Georgia
Your pool holds about 10,000 gallons. You could drain via sump pump or siphon hose about 1/2 the water and refill and it would be a good start.

With a vinyl lined pool you never want to go too low with a draining or the liner can shift. Better to drain-refill-mix- drain again rather than risk that liner problem.

Maddie