Algae: Your Pool’s Biggest Enemy  

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When it comes to achieving sparkling clear pool water, keeping algae at bay is key. Algae is insidious and once it gets a foothold you’ll need a variety of specialty pool supplies to get rid of it. Keeping your pool chemistry at the appropriate levels will help combat algae, as will frequent cleaning of the filter and sweep trap. In addition to promptly removing leaves and debris, sweeping down the pool wall, cleaning and replacing the filter regularly, and running the pump appropriately will help eliminate most algae threats. However, no matter how careful you are with your maintenance, water testing and the addition of needed pool supplies, when the weather heats up and a pool is used extensively by numerous people, the pH can get out of whack and an algae infestation can result.

Types of Algae

There are three basic types of algae that are typically found in swimming pools: green, yellow and black. No matter what the color, each type of algae should be a concern to pool owners.

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Green Algae – This is the most common form of pool algae most pool owners experience. It initially appears as a green slime on pool or spa walls, and grows quickly, easily overrunning your pool. While the algae can be visibly removed with a pool brush, in order to keep it from growing back, you’ll need specific pool supplies to sanitize the water.

Yellow Algae – While yellow algae grows at a much slower rate than green algae, it is much more difficult to eliminate once it sets in. The surface layer can be removed with a brush, but in order to completely remove it, you’ll need to expose it to pool supplies like algicides and chlorine and perform a superchlorination.

Black Algae – This is the most dangerous form of algae. It appears at first as black specks that look like dirt accumulating at the bottom of the spa or pool. Once the algae grows larger it appears as a dark blue-green color, and then spreads rapidly. Because it grows into the concrete and plaster, if left unchecked it can cause structural damage. Pool supplies such as algicides and sanitizers can prevent the spread of black algae before it causes damage.

Removing Algae

Once your water is tested, you’ll need to apply specific pool supplies depending on which type of algae you have. The algicide will typically be applied in three treatments. The first is applied evenly around the perimeter and then on problem areas. After each dose of algicide or shock treatment your pool pump will need to run for approximately 12 hours.

Because the different types of algae are the most widespread issue swimming pool owners deal with, it is important that you keep up on routine maintenance and have a professional monitor your swimming pool regularly.

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