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Thread: Cannot Get Rid of Cloudy Water

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    ajb8898 is offline Subscriber Thread Analyst ajb8898 0
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    Default Cannot Get Rid of Cloudy Water

    OK I am so tired of my pool I could literally weep right now. We have had this pool for about 5 years but this year seems extremely difficult for some reason.
    First, the pool is above-ground oval 15,000 gallons. We have a Haywood sand filter and use chlorine.
    We opened the pool 3 weeks ago. I say "open" loosely as it was not covered or prepped for the winter in any way.
    It was extremely green. We followed whatever the pool store said. I don't remember as we've been there probably 10 times in 3 weeks. We've shocked, floc'd twice, tried clarifier twice and many other things to get it clear.
    We made a big mistake of not taking out our steps so the algae kept wanting to grow.
    As of yesterday we took out the steps and put in twice the shock as we normally do to kill the algae that escaped from the inside of the steps. I also vacuumed and brushed. We've done it this way before and took out the steps after we could see the bottom and were more comfortable getting in the pool but we got desperate this year.
    As of this morning, the pool is still cloudy but not green. I have yet to see more than 1 foot down since we started trying to clean it. So frustrated that I can't get it clear.
    I have a drops test just for pH and chlorine (and ordered the Taylor kit) and chlorine is of course high since I just put so much in yesterday. The pH seems to be between 6.8-7.0.

    What can I do to get this thing clear??

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    Default Re: Cannot Get Rid of Cloudy Water

    One thing we'll need to know is your CYA reading. Do you have a reputable pool store that will test it for you? But don't let them talk you into buying anything else unless you have no CYA. Then, you'll need to buy some but don't put it in yet.

    Until your kit arrives, add 2 gallons of plain, unscented bleach each evening unless your test kit shows a chlorine reading that is dark yellow. Run your pump 24/7 and backwash whenever the filter pressure rises 8-10 psi over clean filter pressure.

    You also want to add a little 20 Mule Team Borax (laundry aisle at Walmart) to get the pH above 7.2. Add it slowly to the skimmer while the pump is running, breaking up any clumps. I'd start with a half a box. You cannot get an accurate pH reading when your chlorine is above 5ppm, so test it in the evening before you add your bleach.

    What kind of chlorine have you been using?

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    Default Re: Cannot Get Rid of Cloudy Water

    This year has been very difficult for many, so while that may not be a consolation, you can be assured you are not alone.

    Quote Originally Posted by ajb8898 View Post
    What can I do to get this thing clear??
    1. In your situation, if you have clear city water, the fastest way maybe to drain and refill. You may want to look at water costs and see whether you should consider that option.

    2. At this point, you've got chemical hobo soup in your pool, which tends to make us very cautious. We don't know what's in there besides algae, and we don't want to make things worse. For that reason, we can't really give you the sort of aggressive response plan that would apply if you ONLY had algae. In particular, we have to rule out using any flocs and clarifiers, since we don't know how much is left in your water and since an overdose can work in reverse, making fine suspensions that are almost impossible to filter. (In the future, NEVER floc, till ALL the algae is dead!)

    3. You are still killing algae. Until it's all dead, thinking about clearing it up is sort of a waste of time. Kill it; then clear it out.

    4. You've ordered kits, so the most productive thing you can do (besides checking drain / refill costs) is to (a) make sure the chlorine levels stay high, (b) put your filter on "RECIRCULATE", (c) run your pump on low speed, or otherwise throttled back, and if at all possible, (d) check to make sure that your sand filter is FULL of sand, and that the sand is not greasy or in clumps.

    Pushing dead algae through small AG sand filters hooked up to big AG pool pumps is not productive, and may fracture the algae particles making them much harder to filter out.

    In a small pool like yours, I'd personally probably take the chlorine as high as I though I safely could (depends on your stabilizer level), turn the pump off, brush till there were no more 'clouds' of green, and continue to maintain high chlorine using bleach for several days WITH THE PUMP OFF. Dead algae may settle out -- live algae will NOT. Once it was settled, I'd then use a manual vac and pole, to vacuum the algae off the bottom, by SIPHONING the water out, with the vac hose.

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    Default Re: Cannot Get Rid of Cloudy Water

    Ajb, the only additional thing that I can offer is that I am pretty much in your same situation! My water is still cloudy white. I don't see any green anywhere and I brush and vacuum and keep my chlorine high. Best of luck!
    AG 7600 gallons, sand filter, 1.5 HP Hayward pump (1 speed), K-2006 test kit

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    Default Re: Cannot Get Rid of Cloudy Water

    True Blue --- I'm kinda not surprised that you are having trouble filtering out. Your pump is mighty powerful for that small volume pool. (We may have told you that before, and if so, sorry to repeat. We read and respond to SO MANY posts per day that it is hard to remember who we have said what to!)
    Last edited by PoolDoc; 05-21-2012 at 09:42 PM. Reason: type: might => mighty

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