Top things I must do to avoid algae?

aquamarine

Well-known member
Mar 9, 2009
101
Midwest
Well, I let the pool turn green again :( So I am getting good at fixing it from the green algae state because of having to do it many times. For various reasons I need to pare it down the major concepts...

What would be the main key things I need to do to avoid it going green on me?

My list would be:
- Never let FC drop below 1... especially not for more than a half day... to be safe, I should aim to never let it go below 2?
- Never let pH get above 7.4... so to be safe, I think I should aim to always be between 7.2-7.3 when I test it... I believe this is my biggest problem, when it rains a bunch, and about once a week, I think I've gotta add muriatic acid? For me it would be around 20 oz I add.
- Keep CYA above 30.
- Never go for more than 36 hrs without running the filter. Is that too lenient?

Is there more? I'm looking for only the stuff absolutely necessary to keep it from getting in a state that's harder to fix. Where you can't just add a few things over one evening and it's fixed.
 

aquamarine

Well-known member
Mar 9, 2009
101
Midwest
Hm, I guess I'm supposed to get my CYA to 40-50+ and then FC needs to be like 3-5...?!

I'm really tired of lugging the 1.75 gallon bleach jugs from Walmart. Isn't there an easier way than the bleach jugs doesn't cost a fortune?
 

zea3

Mod Squad
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Jul 10, 2009
11,555
Houston, Texas
aquamarine said:
Well, I let the pool turn green again :( So I am getting good at fixing it from the green algae state because of having to do it many times. For various reasons I need to pare it down the major concepts...

What would be the main key things I need to do to avoid it going green on me?

My list would be:
- Never let FC drop below 1... especially not for more than a half day... to be safe, I should aim to never let it go below 2?
Never let the FC drop out of your recommended range. That could be 1ppm or 5ppm, depending on the results from the pool calculator or the recommended levels chart in pool school. If you need help determining your recommended range, post a set of recent test results and we will help you.


- Never let pH get above 7.4... so to be safe, I think I should aim to always be between 7.2-7.3 when I test it... I believe this is my biggest problem, when it rains a bunch, and about once a week, I think I've gotta add muriatic acid? For me it would be around 20 oz I add.
pH rise could be rain, could be due to TA level. Test every couple of days and adjust as needed.


- Keep CYA above 30.
Unless you have a lot of splashout or drain frequently your CYA should be pretty stable. Try and keep it between 30 and 50.


- Never go for more than 36 hrs without running the filter. Is that too lenient?
Way to long to go without running the filter. You should run the filter every day. You want to filter the volume of your pool at least once a day. We would need to know the pump size and volume of your pool to calculate run time for your pump. Most people run their pump 4 to 8 hours a day. You can set a timer to program on and off times for the pump.


Is there more? I'm looking for only the stuff absolutely necessary to keep it from getting in a state that's harder to fix. Where you can't just add a few things over one evening and it's fixed.
The main things are to keep the FC within range by testing and adding chlorine every day or every other day, and to run the pump daily.

aquamarine said:
Hm, I guess I'm supposed to get my CYA to 40-50+ and then FC needs to be like 3-5...?!

I'm really tired of lugging the 1.75 gallon bleach jugs from Walmart. Isn't there an easier way than the bleach jugs doesn't cost a fortune?
You may want to invest in an Intex SWG. They are much less expensive than the pool store brands and would be a good starter SWG to see if that system works for you. You would want to disable the cooper ion feature if you get one of the newer models.
 

kenmar

LifeTime Supporter
Apr 13, 2009
288
Schnecksville, PA
I would think that not running your filter for 36 hours is too long.
When the water is not moving, chlorine can be completely consumed in localized areas of your pool. those areas could giver algae a foothold.
I run my filter 24/7 so this is not a problem for me. I know that I read somewhere on TFP that you should turn your water over (x) times an hour.
 

Bama Rambler

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Jun 22, 2009
23,371
SouthWest Alabama
aquamarine said:
My list would be:
- Never let FC drop below 1...
- Never let pH get above 7.4...
- Keep CYA above 30.
- Never go for more than 36 hrs without running the filter. Is that too lenient?
Please don't take this too hard but you really need to read the pool school articles about recommended levels. Also hone up on using the Pool Calc. Now let me see if I can give you some direct advice.
  1. Never let your FC drop below the minimum for your CYA level as shown in both Pool Calc & Chlorine/CYA chart.[/*:m:19rl6fh4]
  2. pH doesn't directly affect algae growth. Keep it between 7.2 and 7.8 all the time.[/*:m:19rl6fh4]
  3. A cya of 30 is a good number if it works for you. The biggest issue is not to let it get too high (>50 or 60).[/*:m:19rl6fh4]
  4. You need to run your pump long enough every day to turn the water over at least one complete exchange[/*:m:19rl6fh4]
 

duraleigh

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Apr 1, 2007
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1. Follow all the advice above....educate yourself on the necessary levels.

2. adequate chlorine

3. adequate chlorine

4. adequate chlorine

5. adequate chlorine
 

bk406

Well-known member
Dec 3, 2009
2,690
Central Massachusetts
HarryH3 said:
Also read up in Pool School: pool-school/ on adding borates to your pool. It makes it much more difficult for algae to survive in your water.
Actually, I'm going to go against the above advice. Aquamarine is just starting out and has a lot to digest to keep the chemistry basics straight. He needs Fc in the pool relative to CYA to keep the algea in check. While borates can help, it's totally optional. For a new person, this is too much to deal with at this point. Gotta learn to walk before you run :wink:
 

duraleigh

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bk406 makes a good point. When a new person is learning the basic concepts (function of chlorine, pH, importance of CYA) I think it is good that we keep our advice on that same plane until he begins to get a grasp and demonstrates an understanding of the process involved to get a crystal clear pool.


At that point, the pool owner is ready to discuss options like borates (and it is completely optional) and perhaps learn about the subleties of varying TA values or using the CSI in his quest for perfect pool water.