So I had to SLAM again. Was this a symptom or the cause?

Brett S

Well-known member
Mar 15, 2019
So my pool has been doing really well for a number of weeks now. Crystal clear water and no signs of algae. My CYA is at 80 and I’ve been maintaining a FC level around 5 to 8. I try to brush my steps every few days, or at least every week because they have been a problem spot for algae for me in the past. However, life got busy and I hadn’t brushed them for a few weeks. The other day I noticed that visible algae was starting to appear on the steps. The water was still crystal clear at that time, so I went ahead and brushed the steps to remove the algae, hoping that would be the end of it. But by the next day I noticed that the water was a bit cloudy, so I went ahead and started a SLAM.

So after all that, my question is this... was not brushing the steps the cause of the algae outbreak? In other words, is it necessary to brush the pool (or at least the places that the automatic cleaner can’t reach) because algae will be able to grow there even if proper chlorine levels are maintained?

Or was that visible algae on the steps just a symptom of the problem? As long as proper chlorine levels are maintained then algae shouldn’t be able to start growing even without regular brushing? If that is the case, then something happened that allowed algae to grow and the steps were just the first place that I happened to notice it.


Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Brushing is an integral part of pool care. Robots can do the floors and walls, sort of. The steps, ledges, etc need to be done.


Gold Supporter
Bronze Supporter
Jun 29, 2016
Tampa, FL
Pool Size
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Intex Krystal Clear
Hi, Brett. I keep a dish brush handy and have a go at my stairs every time I am in the pool. My big wall and floor brush doesn‘t hit all the crevices. If I don’t do this, then even with perfect chemistry, I am asking for trouble. I’m assuming it is because of restricted water flow around the stairs.

If you get in the habit of brushing regularly, it takes just a few minutes and you will prevent any kind of build-up. It takes me longer to get in my suit and lather up with sunscreen than it does to brush my stairs!
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