I Can’t Stand A Green Swimming Pool

by T. Duff on February 15, 2008

Ack…My Pool’s Green – What Do I Do?

I’m sure you can’t stand green pools either. 
They’re no fun.
We can’t swim and have fun in them. But let’s face it from time to time this will happen.  

In this message I’ll be sharing how to clean up and turn around your green pool in the shortest amount of time.

Although it is not easy work, there is a proven method
 of clearing up a green, black or very dirty pool in the shortest time possible. These simple steps will clear things up quickly:

Take a deep breath…you’ll be swimming in just a few short days if you follow this “Cheat Sheet”.

1.  Remove most of the large debris from the pool floo with a large leaf net (not a hand skimmer!). This will stir up the water, and may make your pool look much worse temporarily, but the stirred up debris will settle within a few hours. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO VACUUM THE POOL IF YOU CANNOT SEE THE BOTTOM OF IT OR IF YOU HAVE A LOT OF DEBRIS ON THE BOTTOM. YOU MAY CLOG YOUR SKIMMER,


2.  Adjust the pH and Alkalinity levels of the water using pH Plus, pH Minus and Alkalinity Plus. These levels must be within the proper ranges or the water will never clear.

3.  Shock the pool. This means super chlorinating the water to kill off any bacteria and algae. If your pool is very dirty, it may need MANY gallons of liquid chlorine (shock) over a period of days before the water clears. Start off by adding 3 or 4 gallons, and if you see no results overnight, add 3 or 4 more gallons the next day. Continue this process until you notice the water changing color to either cloudy white, light

green or clear. YOU CANNOT OVER SHOCK A POOL! The more you add, the quicker it will clear ! Note…shock is available in liquid or powdered form, but I recommend using liquid (it works faster). You may also want to add a high quality algaecide to the water at this point.

4.  Run your filter 24 hours a day and backwash 3 or 4 times a day for quickest results. Green or cloudy water will quickly clog a filter, therefore you may have to backwash your filter many times a day until the pool clears. THIS IS NORMAL!  Remember, you cannot over-backwash a pool filter. The more you run your pool, and the more you backwash the filter, the faster the pool will clear up. If you have a D.E. filter, remember to add new D.E. to the skimmer closest to your filter after each backwashing. A D.E. filter is more work than a sand filter, but the D.E. filter will clear a green pool about 30% faster than a sand filter.

If you follow these instructions and your pool does not clear up within 4 or 5 days, your filter may not be functioning properly. If this is the case with your pool, please shoot me an email so I can best assist you. The pool will never clear up if the filter is not working properly!

Once the water does clear up, you will most probably see debris on the pool floor (dead leaves, algae, etc.). If there is only a small amount of debris present, you may want to vacuum it up using your own pool vacuum system. This will save a lot of wear and tear to your filter system, as well as assuring that no debris gets clogged in your pool pipes.  

I hope these tidbits offered some assistance.  If you’re still encountering issues, jus let me know.  I’ll be more than happy to assist you.

Improving pools…one at a time.


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Chrystal May 7, 2008 at 6:08 pm

We are pool dummies, but too cheap to hire pool guy. We have a pretty extensive filtering and heating system that we have very little knowledge about. I keep reading about “back washing” the filter. How do you do that?


Loren Louiseau May 30, 2008 at 10:40 pm

Terry, I love this site. Keep the wisdom flowing. Each year it seems that I am having more trouble opening my pool. Major algae problems. I am trying out your guidelines for opening the pool. I have made just one adjustment to your guide, and would like your opinion if this seems reasonable. I have shocked and brush my pool. But I have kept the filter in “Circulation” mode instead of filter. I have done this for about 1/2 day. Then I switched to filter. I find that my circulation is very poor with lots of algae. My thinking is I can allow the shock to work better when circulation is at the highest. I plan on changing back to circulation at nite. Does this make sense, or should I keep the filter on all the time? Thanks for your expert advise.


Anonymous June 3, 2014 at 2:18 pm

I did the same thing and my pool cleared right up. Once I added the filter back, my water is now green and I’m having a terrible time getting it cleared up.


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