ABC Blog

Cloudy Pool Water Woes

It’s finally summer, so you, your family, and all the kids in the neighborhood want to use your pool. But if you’ve been neglecting it all winter, it might need a little bit of a tune-up before anyone will want to jump in. But if you’ve already spent hours with the skimmer and the water’s still cloudy, we’ve got you covered.

Cloudy water is generally caused by three things: chemical imbalances, algae or particles. The good news is that it’s pretty easy to figure out what the problem is. The bad news is that you might have to spend a few days mucking around with pool chemicals and cleaning. But first let’s talk about how to diagnose your problem.

You do have a water testing kit, right? Go ahead and dust it off. If you’ve never looked at it before, figure out what it tests for. Even the most basic tests should tell you your water’s pH, alkalinity, free chlorine and total chlorine levels. You want your pH number to fall between 7.2 and 7.6 and your alkalinity to fall between 80 to 120 ppm. If your kit also tests for calcium (a hard water indicator), that number should be between 200 and 400 ppm. If any of these numbers are way out of range, follow the directions for your pool chemicals to balance them out. Wait a couple days and test your water again.

If the water’s balanced but cloudy, you might have an algae problem. This one’s easy: is the water cloudy and green? Algae. It is blue or grey? Dead algae. Kill any algae by making sure your chlorine levels – both free and total – fall between one and three ppm.

OK, but what if all your chemical levels are fine? Then you’ve got some sediment, and it’s time to call the pros or get dirty. If you can, you’ll want to remove your pool filter and hose it off. Some pool filters require replacement, backwashing or treatment instead. If you’re not sure which treatment your filter needs, it’s time to call for backup.

Your last resort, if all your chemicals are fine and you’ve just cleaned your filtration system, is to use a clarifier. These chemicals bind tiny particles together so that your filter can grab them. However, using these treatments too much can actually clog your filter and make it less effective, so use these as a last resort.

No matter how deep you are, if you’re in the Houston area, we’re available to answer your questions and help you with all your pool maintenance needs. Cleaning up your pool water can take days, and it can get pretty gross. But we all know that in the hot summer months, nothing beats a crystal-clear pool! Contact us at ABC Home & Commercial services today.

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