Frustrated with Iron Stains

dmccoyTFP

Member
Jun 23, 2016
23
Gonzales, LA
I've about resigned myself to the fact that we will always have a yellow stained pool due to the iron content in our well water. After being a new pool owner for the past 3 years and knowing nothing about them going in, I believe I've mastered just about everything but this. I have tried all sorts of sequestering agents and products including CuLator but all to no avail. It always seems that no matter what I do, the minute I start to raise the chlorine level, the stains are back. Any suggestions? Has anyone else had any luck with treating iron stains and keeping them off the pool surface?
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
There are tons of threads here on the forum about iron control, staining, filtering, and removal. In the end though, it boils-down to a few basic concepts:
- The higher the iron content the more susceptible the pool is to discoloration and staining
- FC cannot be much higher than necessary to maintain algae control; see FC/CYA Chart
- PH should be controlled carefully, in some cases maintained on the lower-mid 7s based on pool equipment and potential for corrosion
- If refilling from a well, try to pre-filter new water to remove iron particles. Once in the pool, filtering is generally more productive when the iron is precipitating-out; some find filtering with polyfill, towels, or other material in the skimmer useful.
- Use a good sequestrant. ProTeam's Metal Magic and Jack's Magic the Pink Stuff (regular), the Blue Stuff (fresh plaster), and the Purple Stuff (SWG) are some of the top sequestrants. You can also find other brands with similar products, some of which are noticeably less expensive. Sequestrants based on HEDP, phosphonic acid, or phosphonic acid derivatives are the most effective.
- Most ideal scenario .... get fresh water trucked-in :)

As for existing stains, local spot treatments can be done with Vitamin C tablets. Larger pool staining could require an Ascorbic Acid treatment.
 
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dmccoyTFP

Member
Jun 23, 2016
23
Gonzales, LA
There are tons of threads here on the forum about iron control, staining, filtering, and removal. In the end though, it boils-down to a few basic concepts:
- The higher the iron content the more susceptible the pool is to discoloration and staining
- FC cannot be much higher than necessary to maintain algae control; see FC/CYA Chart
- PH should be controlled carefully, in some cases maintained on the lower-mid 7s based on pool equipment and potential for corrosion
- If refilling from a well, try to pre-filter new water to remove iron particles. Once in the pool, filtering is generally more productive when the iron is precipitating-out; some find filtering with polyfill, towels, or other material in the skimmer useful.
- Use a good sequestrant. ProTeam's Metal Magic and Jack's Magic the Pink Stuff (regular), the Blue Stuff (fresh plaster), and the Purple Stuff (SWG) are some of the top sequestrants. You can also find other brands with similar products, some of which are noticeably less expensive. Sequestrants based on HEDP, phosphonic acid, or phosphonic acid derivatives are the most effective.
- Most ideal scenario .... get fresh water trucked-in :)

As for existing stains, local spot treatments can be done with Vitamin C tablets. Larger pool staining could require an Ascorbic Acid treatment.
This is the problem I always run into: most of the treatment products tell you that the chlorine needs to be at or close to zero. Then I get caught in a loop of seeing algae, having to raise the chlorine, and then having stains back which puts me right back where I started. This last time, I couldn't get it to hold chlorine so I'm having to do a slam. Pool started out nice and white with blue water but now I'm back to yellow, stained surface again. ☹
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
I suppose you've already see this:
 
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dmccoyTFP

Member
Jun 23, 2016
23
Gonzales, LA
I suppose you've already see this:
I have but I'll review it again. Maybe I missed something before. Thank you.
 

zea3

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2009
11,724
Houston, Texas
When a good long rain is forecast drop the water level in the pool a couple of inches. Some folks have diverted their downspouts to funnel rainwater into the pool. Some folks have reported good results using a whole house filter on their fill line for the pool.