You should allow 5-10 days for this process.
There are 3 things to rely on when expecting your pool to clear:
1) Your pool’s filter
2) Your pool’s water chemistry
3) And You!
Without a good filter system you are going to struggle longer and harder to clear up your pool. If you have a sand or glass media filter, make sure the media has been changed according to the time frame that it is good for. If you have a cartridge filter, make sure your filter is clean or replaced. Before you turn your filter on, it is important to make sure you have plenty of water in your pool (waterline above skimmer is best) to manually vacuum to waste. If you cannot see the bottom of the pool and you believe there are leaves and debris on the floor, use a leaf net to scoop as much debris out as you can. Be cautious when vacuuming if you cannot see the bottom . Using the leaf net will most likely stir up dirt and algae, making it even harder to see the bottom, but dip out as much as you can then allow your pool to sit still for a couple of hours and then proceed to vacuum.
When you are ready to vacuum your pool, put your hose with a telepole and vacuum head attached in the deepest part of the pool, then turn your filter on to ‘Waste,’ and be prepared to do this as quickly as possible to get as much debris and algae out of the pool before your waterline drains too low. Once you are finished vacuuming, put your filter on the “Filter” setting and let it run 24 hours a day if you can. For the quickest results, backwash a few times a day while it is green and 1-2 times a week when it is clear.
The more time you allow your filter to run and times you backwash, the faster your pool will clear.
Your pool’s water clarity depends not only on a good filtration system but also the balance of the water.
For a standard Chlorine pool, your levels should be:
Free Chlorine: 1 – 4 ppm
Total Chlorine: 1 – 4 ppm
Alkalinity: 100 – 150 ppm
pH: 7.4 – 7.6
Cyanuric Acid: 60 – 120 ppm
Calcium Hardness: 175 – 275 ppm
Feel free to bring us a water sample. We (or your local pool dealer) can give you an accurate read and print out on all of your pool water levels and direct you to the proper chemicals to add.
Soon after you have your filter up and running it is vital to chlorinate (or use an alternative sanitizer) and shock your pool. Using a chlorine floater with 3” chlorine tablets is ideal as well as “shocking” your pool every day for a few days with a super chlorinating shock or liquid chlorine. This will help to quickly eliminate bacteria and algae. At this point, don’t be afraid of over shocking your pool.
Using a high-quality Algaecide before you shock will greatly affect how quickly the algae dies and gets extracted from the pool.
Manually Cleaning the Pool
The third step in the process of clearing a green pool, is elbow grease! Vacuuming algae and debris on the waste setting in the beginning can really help your filter system and get you and your family swimming and relaxing sooner. It may however, take a couple times of vacuuming (and after the first time, it may not be necessary to vacuum to waste) and a lot of brushing, depending on your algae growth and surface of your pool. It is important to brush the sides and bottom of your pool everyday to help stir up the dirt and algae so your filter can catch it. Net out any large debris or leaves once you can see the bottom.
If you still have algae growth after vacuuming, brushing, using algaecide, and shock, your filter may not be working properly or you may need to contact a professional to be sure you are using the right chemicals and dosage.
Phosphates can also be the culprit of cloudy or green water. Phosphates are nonmetallic compounds that are broken down into orthophosphates from oxidation (shocking), enzyme digestion, or hydrolysis. Orthophosphates are the primary form of food for plants, including algae. Phosphates can show up in your pool from a variety of things, including: lawn fertilizer, cosmetics, leaves, pollen etc. If your phosphate level exceeds 200 ppb, the algae becomes less and less resistant to sanitizers and your pool will stay green or cloudy. You will need to treat your pool with a specific phosphate removal product, especially if they exceed 1000 ppb.
If your pool is not green anymore but is still cloudy and you do not see an improvement within a day or two of constant filtration and you have tested for phosphates, your filter may not be able to filter microbial particles. Using a flocculent to help these particles attach to each other can help your filter catch them or you can vacuum to waste once it settles on the bottom of the pool. (Follow professional’s instructions or directions on bottle).
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you need help with this process!