Oil on pool surface, smells like petroleum

loumal

Member
Aug 19, 2019
8
seaford NY
Hi,

I have an above ground pool and had the liner replaced recently. After refilling it I realized some of the hoses were leaking. The pool sat idle for a few days before I replaced the hoses. Then after I started running the filter again, I noticed an oil slick on the surface that smells of petroleum. No one swanm in the pool.

I assume that it's the pump, perhaps the seal overheated and the lubricant/grease is in the pool water? What do I do? Replace the filter I guess? Drain the pool, but what about the grease? do I have to wipe the liner---will enzymes actually work to dissolve the oily residue?

I am so frustrated now.

Thanks
 

loumal

Member
Aug 19, 2019
8
seaford NY
Hi,

Posted in two forum--apolgies if it's against forum etiquette

I have an above ground pool and had the liner replaced recently. After refilling it I realized some of the hoses were leaking. The pool sat idle for a few days before I replaced the hoses. Then after I started running the filter again, I noticed an oil slick on the surface that smells of petroleum. No one swanm in the pool.

I assume that it's the pump, perhaps the seal overheated and the lubricant/grease is in the pool water? What do I do? Replace the filter I guess? Drain the pool, but what about the grease? do I have to wipe the liner---will enzymes actually work to dissolve the oily residue?

I am so frustrated now.

Thanks
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
16,024
I wouldn't worry too much about it. Get the chemistry right and begin filtering. As long as the oil isn't too bad, it should clear.

Is the water from a well or city water?

Any idea about the source of the contamination?

Pool First Aid might help.

 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
21,957
Laughlin, NV
Pool pumps do not have any lubricant that would cause this. I suspect it was either on the liner itself when installed or something got added to the water.

It should degrade and you may have to wipe off the waterline, skimmer, etc.
 

loumal

Member
Aug 19, 2019
8
seaford NY
Pool pumps do not have any lubricant that would cause this. I suspect it was either on the liner itself when installed or something got added to the water.

It should degrade and you may have to wipe off the waterline, skimmer, etc.
Thanks, that is good know . . . I have pool first aid in there now and will be running the filter for the next 48 hours
 

loumal

Member
Aug 19, 2019
8
seaford NY
I wouldn't worry too much about it. Get the chemistry right and begin filtering. As long as the oil isn't too bad, it should clear.

Is the water from a well or city water?

Any idea about the source of the contamination?

Pool First Aid might help.

James,
We are working on getting the chemistry correct, I will be in touch with the company that installed the liner to ask about the petroleum in the water. In the meantime, I added Pool First today and will be running the filter for the next 48 hours and monitoring the water closely.

I have had this pool for 13 years with barely a problem. This summer has been crazy and it is ending with a frustrating situation. You guys are making me feel a bit better. Thanks!

I still really want to know what caused the oil slick. . . .I put my hands in the water and they come out greasy and smelling slightly of motor oil . . . . Crazy!!!!
 

loumal

Member
Aug 19, 2019
8
seaford NY
What is that? Never add anything you do not know what it will do based on your testing.
Pool First Aid was recommended to me at Leslies Pool Supply

Pool First Aid combines our powerful SMARTZyme™ technology with a clarifier to fix pool problems quickly.
  • Cleans pool of dead algae, pollen, oils, spills, anti-freeze residue, paint, vandalism and other forms of non-living organic water contamination
  • Frees clogged filters of oil and other forms of non-living organic buildup
  • Removes dead algae quickly and efficiently, in many cases without the need to backwash
Pool First Aid is a powerful pool problem solver that works very fast - often without scrubbing
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
21,957
Laughlin, NV
Ahhh - a pool store potion.

Be aware many of those plug up your filter. We do not recommend using any pool store potions. Chlorine will do the same thing.
 

cfherrman

TFP Guide
May 10, 2017
2,321
Hays, Kansas
If you have a skimmer run that to waste a bit it will pull the oil off the top then just do some cleaning as needed, and time will take care of it.

Pool store potion typically makes things worse
 

loumal

Member
Aug 19, 2019
8
seaford NY
If you have a skimmer run that to waste a bit it will pull the oil off the top then just do some cleaning as needed, and time will take care of it.

Pool store potion typically makes things worse
I'll do that later tonight when I get back from form work....thanks for that tip
 

loumal

Member
Aug 19, 2019
8
seaford NY
Ahhh - a pool store potion.

Be aware many of those plug up your filter. We do not recommend using any pool store potions. Chlorine will do the same thing.
Who knew? I never had this kind of issue and I panicked! I found another leak this morning from the filter valve--ughh!
I guess this will eventually clear up.
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
704
NY
I’d also put a tennis ball in each skimmer for at least this year and probably next year. Won’t hurt a thing and it will help with piece of mind if there is any residual oils that don’t backwash
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
32,560
Sebring, Florida
Somewhere on this forum, enzyme products (like pool first aid) have been suggested by a reputable member. Enzymes do assist breaking down oils so I am guessing it is a helpful product,

I (also a guess......never done it) would also suggest some cotton rags into the skimmers to perhaps capture some of the floating oil. Obviously not enough to block the skimmer but I bet it would capture a noticeable amount.

Keep your chlorine up......never forget it's importance as you are solving this problem.

I think you will be "fixed" in short order if you stay proactive.
 

Pool_Medic

In The Industry
Apr 1, 2018
935
Bangor Maine
Natural Chemistry’s pool First Aid is designed for just this issue. The enzymes are similar to those used in oil spills. Not all pool store recommendations are wasteful.
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
16,024
Oils are difficult for chlorine to break down. Enzymes can help in cases where a lot of oil has gotten in the pool.

For normal body oils, lotions etc. there's usually no need for enzymes.

The problem in this case is that we don't know what type of oil or how much.

Hopefully, it will clear soon.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
8,746
Northern NJ
You are in Seaford NY under the JFK flight paths. A plane could have had a problem requiring it to return to JFK and needed to dump fuel to not land overweight. Some planes have the capability to do that. Just speculation as we will never know for sure where it came from.