Cloudy Water

You Must Read All Of The Liability Agreement Before Taking Any Action, Especially All Safety And Liability Warnings.

Pool Size: ______________________________ Gallons

Sanitizer System:  Chlorine    Bromine  Baquacil/PHMB

Is reading all of this too much work?  Want to just buy something and throw it in?   Here are some things to try:

 Moderately Cloudy Water – Can see the bottom of the shallow end:

1.   Make sure the pH is OK. Even better, do a computerized balance:                                                

2.   Shock it: _________________(Baquacil Oxidizer at 1 gallon/10k, Target Super Shock at 1 gallon/15k, BioGuard  Smart Shock at 1 pound/12k) then wait 24 hours before going to the next step. A doubled dose could work better than a single dose.

3.   Add initial dose of clarifier: ________________ounces (Target Bee Kleer at 2 oz/10k, BioGuard Polysheen Blue at 2 oz/10k, Bioguard Natural Clarifier at 2 oz/10K).

4.   Add initial dose of filter aid to a sand filter: _____________________________ (Target Filter Aide at 1-1 ½ cups).  DE filters are normally so good that you do not need this.  A cartridge filter could be helped with this, but it can be really difficult to remove the cartridge later without getting the Filter Aid into the pool.

5.   Filter 24 hours a day, on high speed.  After 48 hours, try the clarifier or backwash and try the filter aid again.  Or, try   floccing any filter with Baquacil Flocculant (1-12 ounces, depending on the filter), or using a cellulose-based additive like Bioguard Sparkle-Up or Fiber Clear.  Read the directions carefully – every filter type and size uses a different prescription.

6.   After 48 more hours, change the sand, or chemically clean the filter elements.  You will need a bottle of Baquacil Filter Cleaner, Target Filter Cleaner, BioGuard Strip Kwik or BioGuard Kleen It.

7.   After 48 more hours, give up and read the directions on the next six pages, drain the pool, or rent our NS48 service filter. It’s not cheap, but if you meet our requirements, you only pay if it works.  We can clear most pools in two days, and if it works, it proves that the problem was your filter.  Draining the pool can be bad for the liner and structure, so make sure you know what you’re doing.

8.   If nothing works, it might be bioslime.  See question 9 inside, and our Pool TipsTM on Bioslime.

      Very Cloudy Water – Cannot see the bottom of the shallow end:

1.   Raise the water level to three inches higher than normal.  You are going to be losing three inches in a few days.

2.   Raise the pH to 8.0, and Total Alkalinity above 130 ppm by adding pH increaser, at one pound per 10,000 gallons.  Circulate 6 hours.  Check the pH, then add more at the same rate.  Circulate and check again.  Keep on trying until you get to 8.0.

3.   Floc the pool: ___________________________________________(Baquacil Flocculant at 1 bottle/10k, Target Floc   Alot at 1 bottle/15k, BioGuard Power Floc at 1 bottle/20k).  Mix it into several buckets of pool water and spread it out over the entire surface of the pool while the filter is running.

4.   Run the filter (on Recirculate if you have that position) an hour after you add the floc, then shut off the filter, and wait 24-72 hours.  Do not use the pool.  Give everything time to settle.  Test pH every day, and raise it if it drops below 7.5.  You’ll know when you’re done.  The water should be more clear, with white stuff on the bottom.

5.   Vacuum on waste (not on backwash) and not through the tank.  You’ll lose two or three inches of water.  If you are not sure how, ask us.  When you are done, go back to regular filtration.

6.   Check the pH and readjust to normal (7.2 – 7.6).

7.   If water is cloudy but better, try the section above for moderately cloudy water.  If it did not get much better, and you did watch the pH (see section 4), give up and read the directions on the next six pages, drain the pool, or rent our NS48   service filter.  It’s not cheap, but if you meet our requirements, you only pay if it works.  We can clear most pools in two days, and if it works, it proves that the problem was your filter.  Draining the pool can be bad for the liner and    structure, so make sure you know what you’re doing.

8.   If nothing works, it might be bioslime.  See question 9 inside, and our Pool TipsTM on Bioslime.

For more information on the best way to diagnose and clear cloudy water, please read the next six pages.

Technician: _______________________

Our suggestions assume that you have given us a proper description of your pool’s size, history and problem. Read all labels carefully, and only use chemicals exactly as described on the label. Never mix chemicals together outside of the pool. Some of them can cause a fire or explosion.

 Diagnosing and Clearing Up Cloudy Water

We wish that we had a magic pill to clear up cloudy water, but we don’t. We don’t even have a magic test that tells us why your water is cloudy. Often we need to spend twenty to thirty minutes asking you questions just to get close to an answer.

Start with this knowledge: cloudy water is curable, and we know that we can cure it. The fastest and best way is to either drain the pool or rent a better filter. If you are on town water, replacing your water is probably $45 to $60 per 10,000 gallons. Trucking in water is closer to $250 per 9,000 gallons. However, draining can ruin the liner or the pool if you do it wrong, so check the pool’s directions or talk to a professional first. Renting a better filter is around $200. You may not wish to spend that. In the rest of this brochure, we’re going to try to help you find a cure for free, or at least a very small expense. We’re also going to try to help you keep it from coming back. You’re going to have to help us by reading, thinking, and trying a few experiments at home.

Why Do You Have Cloudy Water?

There are many reasons for cloudy water, and you could easily have several. In the end, it’s generally poor filtration and circulation. It’s hardly ever related to your brand of chlorine, bromine, or biguanide (Baquacil). Remember, the reason you use a pool sanitizer is to keep people from getting sick. The reason you use a filter is to keep the water clear. If your water isn’t clear, it’s probably not your sanitizer’s fault. It’s your filter’s fault.

We’re one of the oldest and largest pool stores in New England, with at least 15,000 active, regular pool customers. The majority of our customers have Diatomaceous Earth filters, and they maintain their pools on a 3-step system, often (45% of the time) on Baquacil. The majority of our customers who complain of cloudy water have sand filters, don’t think they need to follow a 3-step system, and usually use chlorine.  Chemical company researchers who are sometimes sent out to analyze the worst pool problems tell us the most common denominator they see is a broken pressure gauge.  Because a broken pressure gauge messes up a pool?  No.  Because a pool owner who doesn’t care if they can read the filter pressure probably doesn’t care about something else.

While anyone can have cloudy water, we usually have you pegged before we start talking. We even know when it’s going to get cloudy:

1.    Pollen season – There’s just as much going into your pool as on to your car. However, most of the pollen on your car blows off, and all of the pollen on your pool stays in. Of course, whatever we recommend to you the week that the pollen goes away will make us look like geniuses!

2.    Mid-July to mid-August – The pool’s in constant use, the kids never go inside to use the bathroom. Most of the day, there’s no chlorine or bromine in the pool. When it rains, it’s a short but drenching thunderstorm.

3.    A week after 2-4 days of rain or a vacation – why run the filter or put in chlorine if you’re not using the pool?  Oh, that’s right – to keep the water from turning cloudy!

Questions and Answers

In order to help you, or for you to help yourself, someone’s going to need to know the answers to the following questions:

1.    How cloudy is it?

       A.    Clear, or clear with tint of color.

       B.    Slight haze – can barely see a vacuum head in the deep end.

       C.    Moderate haze – can barely see a vacuum head in the shallow end.

       D.    Really horrible haze – can barely see the second or third ladder step.

       E.    Time to drain it – can barely see the top ladder step.

Clear, colored or tinted water is usually caused by a chemical or molecular problem that cannot normally be filtered out. Minerals, incompatible chemicals, and chlorophyll leaching out of leaves are common causes. Mineral chelators like Target™ Super Stain Away, metal sequesterers, and cellulose-based filter aids like Fiber Clear and Bioguard Sparkle-Up are likely cures. A water lab test for metals, including manganese, is a good place to start.

A slight haze should be curable by balancing the water, shocking, and improving filtration and circulation – without spending money on extra chemicals.  A moderate haze will probably require a clarifier, filteraid, cellulose, or floc through the filter. In bad cases (you can’t see the bottom), floc the pool (Baquacil Flocculant, Floc Alot, or LiquiFloc). A really horrible haze will probably require our rental filter (or borrow a really big Diatomaceous Earth filter from a neighbor). Time-to-drain it: need we say more? Remember, if you use town water, your water replacement cost is probably cheaper than a major chemical treatment. Also, draining can be dangerous for your pool, so do not do it without advice from the builder or manufacturer.

2.    What color is it? 

A.    White;   B. Gray;   C. Green;   D. Brown;   E. Black;   F. Blue

White or gray water usually indicates the presence of dust, bacteria, incompatible chemicals, high TDS (total dissolved solids), or dirt. Murky green would probably be algae, while clear green might be chlorophyll, iron or copper.  Brown water might indicate very high iron or dirt.  Black may be manganese or incredibly bad dirt. Blue is often copper, or the blue of the pool liner reflecting off white particles.

Look carefully at your backwash water. Your filter should be concentrating the particles in your water.  You should expect to see a more concentrated form of the color in the pool. If not, we have to wonder why.  Algae in backwash water, for instance, will be deep green. Iron (which looked greenish in the pool), will look rusty in the backwash.

3.    What started it?

       A.    When did it start?

       B.    What went into the pool the 4 days before it got cloudy?

       C.    What was the weather then?

       D.    Was anything different about filtration, circulation, use?

       E.    Are there any animals using the pool?

If something unusual happened right before the pool went cloudy, it’s an obvious thing to blame.  A pool party that put lots of food, body oils, suntan lotion, dirt and grass into the pool can give you a cloud.  Urine and the oils in animal fur can tie up chlorine, and use up any sanitizer.  A major rainstorm can put a mile of air pollution, pollen, and airborne algae into the pool.

If there is half a pound of dust and pollen falling into your pool each day, and your filter is only capable of removing a quarter of a pound of dirt each day, your filter will not keep up until the amount of dirt falling in the pool drops below that quarter pound.  Even then, if there are six extra pounds of dirt in the pool then, you’re still looking at at least 24 more days to catch up!

Most importantly, anything that changes how the filter works, and how completely the pool water gets into the filter, changes how much dirt your filter takes out of the pool.

One German shepherd swimming in a pool for an hour puts a chemical strain on the pool equivalent to twenty people.  Animals have fur full of oil and dirt.  We don’t.

4.    Has anything helped or made it worse? 

       A.    Adding chemicals? Which ones?

       B.    Running filter longer?

While adding balancing chemicals incorrectly (pH balancers, Total Alkalinity Control, Calcium Hardness, Chlorine Stabilizer) can give you a slight cloud, that cloud usually clears up in a couple of days.  Balancing water properly probably won’t totally clear up a cloud, but it should help a little.  Most importantly, anything that seems to help may indicate if we’re dealing with a chemical, dirt, or organic problem.  If shocking helps, the problem is probably organic (carbon-based) in origin – probably a growth or the dead results of a previous growth. If you double your filtration time and the problem starts to get better, there’s not much reason to try to find chemical problems.

5.    How’s the filter acting? 

       A.    How long does the filter run? How long did it run the week before the pool got cloudy?

       B.    How often do you backwash or bump?

       C.    How often does the filter require backwashing or bumping?

       D.    What color is the backwash water?

       E.    When was the last time the sand was changed?

       F.    If you have a D.E. filter, are you using the right amount? What makes you think so?

       G.    When was the last time the filter was chemically cleaned?

       H.    Does the pressure gauge work? How does its reading compare to the flow you see from the pool’s returns?

       I.     Honestly, is the filter reasonably sized for the pool?                         

Any Filter:  The purpose of your filter is to keep clean water clean.  It was probably not designed to clean up a swamp.  Filters are designed to be run 24 hours a day, and you should do so until your pool is crystal clear.  At that point only, if you’re not looking to pay for Seabrook all by yourself, you may wish to cut back to 8 hours a day.

If you weren’t running the filter enough, that could be the cause. If you’re running 8 hours a day now, you could probably triple the speed with which your pool clears, if you switch to 24 hours a day.

DE Filter:  If you have a Diatomaceous Earth (D.E.) filter, you really shouldn’t have cloudy water. Make absolutely sure that you are using the correct amount of D.E., and you replace it with the right amount when you clean it out. Most of the people that we talk to are not using the right amount. Three pounds of D.E. fit into six one-pound coffee cans (and if you remember one-pound coffee cans, you’re older than me!). To do it right, weigh it, or buy a D.E. scoop.

Check for holes in your grids.  Maybe you have been losing DE into the pool.  That won’t make the water cloudy itself.  The DE is heavy and settles onto the floor.  But, it could make the filter low on DE. If you have run more than an hour or so with too little DE in your filter, the elements may be clogged. Only a chemical cleaning will fix it.

Sand Filter:  If you have a sand filter, you should not be backwashing too often. Your filter takes out the smallest particles when it’s the most dirty. Dirt fills the spaces in the sand, to make the spaces smaller. Then, smaller particles can be caught.  Obviously, if you wait too long, you’re not getting much water through and you may overheat the motor. However, if you backwash too often, you’ll never get the smallest particles out of the water.

Filter sand should be changed every year. People with large or difficult filters often try to skip years. If you do not change the sand every year, you should chemically clean the sand (Baquacil Filter Cleaner, Target Filter Cleaner, BioGuard Strip Kwik or Kleen-It) twice a year. Your sand could be channeling (forming internal ravines that the water can go through without actually touching the sand). It only takes a few channels to allow half of your water to miss the sand. That’s like having half a filter (but all of the electricity). Even with proper cleaning, you should change the sand every year, and use the right type (there’s more than one type of sand). 

Element or Cartridge Filter:  Clean the cartridge more often.  Make sure that the top and bottom cannot compress while the filter is running – that lets most of the water go past the cartridge rather than through it.  If you have one of those large Elements, or clean-once-a-year cartridges, (an Element filter is just an expensive cartridge filter with a different name) and if you think you can just clean it once a year, think again.  Your pool water is running through the remains of dead bugs, algae, bacteria, skin cells, bird droppings, etc. that have been fermenting in your filter for three months!

Any Filter:  When your pool is clean, you should expect that your filter requires bumping or backwashing every 7-10 days. Your filter requires this only when two things happen:  The pressure gauge reads ten pounds above where it did when it was clean, and the stream of water coming out of the return is obviously weaker than before.  If you are not sure, you are not there yet.  Don’t backwash until you actually need it.  Backwashing too often is wasteful, bad for the filter, and actually makes a sand filter miss the smaller particles.  Plus, you should be interested in how often your filter needs to be backwashed – which you won’t know if you do it too early.

When the water is cloudy or dirty, you should expect your cycle to shorten to 24-48 hours. If you can filter a dirty pool longer than this, you should ask yourself why the filter isn’t clogging up. You want the filter to clog up quickly – it’s taking stuff out of the water.

Look carefully at the backwash water or the dirty DE when you change the earth. The filter should be concentrating the dirt in the water. It should be a much deeper, darker version of what’s in the pool. If not, your filter is not catching most of the particles.

A reasonable solution would be to change the sand, chemically clean the filter, or improve filter efficiency with Baquacil Flocculant (through the filter), Target Filter Aid, or BioGuard Sparkle Up.

Have a look at the filters that we recommend when people buy a pool from us. If your filter is not as large or as powerful, then it may be undersized for problem-solving. A reasonable solution: borrow a larger filter from a friend – especially if it’s a Diatomaceous Earth filter. We have a very large, powerful filter that you can rent, and if you have already fixed a group of smaller problems, you only pay if the water clears up!

6.    How’s the circulation? 

       A.    How many entries (skimmer, deep end suction, main drain) and exits (eyeball-returns) are there?

       B.    If you can control the entries, do you run mostly on skimmer, or mostly on deep end?

       C.    Are the returns pointed towards the surface, or as low as possible?

       D.    Does the pool get much agitation through use? How often is the pool used, by how many people?

       E.    Do you use an automatic pool cleaner?

       F.    Do you leave your vacuum on overnight once a week? 

Most pools in New Hampshire do not have well-designed circulation systems. Above ground pools really do not have circulation systems at all. If most of your suction is at the top (the thru-wall skimmer) and all of the return (the eyeballs), are at the top, you probably have bad circulation. When you swim and agitate the water, you may be stirring things up well enough. When you do not, you could be cleaning your top foot of water six times a day – and the bottom foot only once every six weeks. If it looks like your water is clean at the top and dirty at the bottom:  there you go!

To improve circulation, make sure that your returns are pointed as far down as possible. Try to bounce the water off the bottom. If you have a main drain or deep end suction, run that as much as possible.  If you have only one main drain, do not turn the skimmer down to increase flow from the drain, though.  That can cause a very dangerous threat of entrapment – where someone could get stuck on the main drain and drown.  If you have two main drains connected to each other, and more than five feet apart, you probably have a safer pool and can isolate the main drains.  However, check with your pool’s builder for sure.

If you do not have a main drain, try leaving your vacuum set in the pool overnight – but with the vac head turned upside-down so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom. You’ll be restricting flow a bit, but you’ll be drawing off the bottom instead of the top. Once or twice a week should be enough.  However, that can be really dangerous for someone swimming.  So never do it when someone will be in the pool.

A way better option is to buy an automatic pool cleaner, or by running your existing cleaner more often. All of them improve circulation to one extent or another.  An automatic pool cleaner takes the single biggest job out of pool care.  Plus giving you way better circulation.

7.    How’s your housekeeping? 

       A.    Are there leaves, dirt, or debris on the bottom of the pool?  

       B.    How often do you brush the sides and bottom?

       C.    How often do you clean out the skimmer and hair and lint trap baskets? When you do, how full are they?

       D.    Do you get pine needles in the pool? Do you check to see if they are clogging your impeller?

Dirt and debris, particularly organics (carbon-based, usually things that used to be alive) provide a food source for algae and bacteria. As importantly, they drain the resources of your shock and sanitizer. Whether they are at the bottom, inside the filter, or in the baskets, they are still in constant contact with the water. A 1/2 gallon bottle of leaves and dirt can create as much of an organic load on your chemicals as an entire pool of green algae! It can create such a chlorine demand that you need three or four times as much chlorine to keep up, and three or four times as much shock to clear the water.

The walls and bottom develop a biofilm (not bioslime, that’s different) similar to the film that develops on your teeth overnight.  Your pool chemicals may kill the top 2-3 layers of cells, but not the 98 layers growing underneath. If you brush the cells up into the water (and the water is properly treated) they will die. Until then, the cells will continue to grow and create an organic load on the pool.

Baskets should be checked at least weekly, plus every time you vacuum. Don’t wait until they get 1/3 full or more – by then, they are cutting off your circulation by reducing water flow.

Pine needles can be a hidden killer. They tend to go right through the baskets, and enough of them can clog your impeller – slowing flow and eventually burning out the motor. If this is a problem, take the pump apart periodically and clean it out. You can also use a pollen and pine needle bag over your skimmer basket to protect your pump.

8.    How do you keep up with your chemicals? 

       A.    How often do you shock?  Are you sure that you use the right amount?

       B.    When was the last time that you shocked?  What kind do you use?

       C.    Is the water balanced to -.3 to +.3? (only a large water lab like ours can tell you that).  How often do you have it balanced?

       D.    Do you follow a 3-step program? (constant sanitizer, weekly algaecide, regular shocking).

       E.    If you use chlorine as a sanitizer, does it contain calcium hypochlorite, or sodium hypochlorite?

       F.    Have you added any water lately?  Does your source water normally have minerals or metals in it?

       G.    Have any fertilizers, mosquito sprays, or other chemicals been spread anywhere near the pool?

       H.    Do you know that pool stores sell three different pool chemical systems, and some pool chemicals are not compatible with each system? Are you sure that all of the chemicals that have been put in your pool are compatible with your system? Are you in the process of switching systems? Are all of your chemicals from the same brand?

Your chemical levels need to be right all the time, not just when you feel like paying attention. This is really important for chlorine and bromine based pools, which are very difficult to maintain properly.

Baquacil Economy and Softswim pools should be shocked monthly and bromine pools every two weeks, but chlorine and Baquacil CDX pools must be shocked weekly.  Chlorine and bromine shocks come in all different strengths and types. For most of them, nothing happens unless you reach breakpoint.  If you put in 98% of what it takes, you might as well have torn up a five dollar bill and tossed it in. Breakpoint didn’t happen.  Bacquacil pools do not have this problem.  Never under-shock. Breakpoint actually moves upward (requiring even more shock) with a high organic, nitrogen, or phosphate load.  We can test for some of that – which is why we may give you an unusual amount of shock as part of a water balance.

The primary purpose of shock is to burn off small organic impurities (up to 2 microns wide) in the water; though in chlorine pools, shock has an additional chemical purpose. Chlorine and hydrogen peroxide shocks kill things, but monopersulfate shocks do not.  Look at the directions, or ask us.

Water balance has a small effect on cloudiness, but a high saturation index (over 1.5) can make water cloudy – not to mention reducing the ability of other chemicals (particularly chlorine) to work. A high TDS (over 1500) can cause cloudiness that can only be cured by draining.  The salt used by a salt-to-chlorine generator brings your water very close to a 1500 TDS all by itself.

Pool water should be balanced at least three times a year – at opening, mid-Summer (July) and just before closing.

All pools have to follow a 3-step program (sanitizer, shock, algaecide) or you are looking for way more important problems than cloudy water.  Like maybe pneumonia, skin infections, and Legionnaires Disease.  If you just buy chemicals at random, whatever’s on sale, and throw them in when you think of it, that’s where you are headed.

Our advice, pick a brand, and stay with it. Sanitizer (chlorine, bromine, or Baquacil) must always be in the water in the correct amounts.  Algaecide weekly, and shock weekly (chlorine or Baquacil CDX) bi-weekly (bromine) or monthly (Baquacil Economy).  Never over algaecide or under-shock.

Some chlorine themselves make water cloudy: calcium hypochlorite and sodium hypochlorite.  Using them to shock is OK – you don’t use that much – but using them daily will eventually cloud water.

Adding new water can add all sorts of contaminants, particularly minerals and fertilizers.  We can test for some, but not all.  Adding a dose of mineral control is a good idea every time you add well water (including town water that is really well water, like from Merrimack and some areas in Amherst).  Fertilizers are a huge and growing (I’m sorry) problem.  Developments are being built on and down stream from land that was fertilized farm land for 100 years. Then, homeowners manicure their lawns to look like a perfect, green carpet. Your neighbor’s fertilizers are now in your drinking water – and on its way into your pool.  Municipal water companies are now putting as much as 1500 ppb of orthophosphates into their drinking water in order to preserve their underground pipes.  We can treat phosphates, but not nitrates – that may require trucking in water from somewhere else.

Do you know what exactly you are putting in your pool?  Only one person in the family should take care of the pool, or at least the chemicals, so that nothing incompatible goes in. Incompatible chemicals turn water cloudy, often just because they are made by different companies.  Pick a brand and stay with it.  Minimally, change brands or systems deliberately.

9.    Is anything growing in your pool?  

       A.    Green algae?

       B.    Black algae?

       C.    Mustard algae?

       D.    Pink slime?

       E.    Clear slime?

       F.    Water mold?

       G.    Frogs?

Any sort of growth beats on your filter and chemicals.  And generally, nothing gets better while the growth is growing. We have printed Pool TipsTM to help with algae and bioslime.  For frogs, get the Pool TipsTM on Pool Opening and start at the beginning.

Bioslime (pink slime, water mold, etc.) is a likely problem, because it usually starts in the filter and the lines.  It can make the water cloudy and clog up your filter. How do you diagnose bioslime?  It’s really, really difficult.  Look for this:  1. Nothing else works to cure the cloudy water.  2. You can see white or pink slippery stuff inside your skimmer (usually under the weir door).  3. Chlorine shock levels drop to 0 in 6 hours or Baquacil Oxidizer levels drop to 0 in 48 hours.  4. Double-shocking improves the cloudiness, but only for a few days.  5. DE filters clog constantly, but the pool does not clear up and the DE doesn’t look dirty.

There is a trick that you can do in shock or oxidizer application that may show some oxygen generation in a particular place. It is, however, really, really dangerous, so you should hire professionals to do it.  They will remove any chlorine from your skimmer and disconnect your automatic chlorinator and heater if you have one; as the shock, combining with chlorine, could blow up your skimmer or chlorinator or damage the heat exchanger.  They will pour a half gallon of liquid shock or oxidizer into your through-wall skimmer while a second person watches the clear cover of the hair-and-lint pot.  If air bubbles appear while they are shocking, that indicates that the shock has oxidized organics in the line – most likely a growing bioslime.  This process is tricky – if they generate too much oxygen, it could possibly catch fire.  If they generate so much that they lose your prime, and then open the hair-and-lint pot to see what happens, they could get shock on their hands or eyes – a painful or even dangerous occurrence.  If they believe that you have a bioslime infection, they will probably continue with the shock until your pool has received a double dose.

Curing bioslime is complicated. Double-shocking is normally only a temporary measure, and it will become very expensive if you start doing it every week. The real solution is about two typed pages, and is included in our Pool TipsTM on Bioslime. There are separate ones for chlorine, bromine, and Baquacil. Please ask for a copy.

10.   Is there anything else simultaneously wrong with the pool, especially things that started around when it became cloudy? How about the filter?

Often, whatever happened to the pool the two weeks before it got cloudy is the key to what made it get cloudy. Our most common:  The pool opened full of algae.  You added shock and algaecide, perhaps it changed color, but it didn’t clear up.  Sure, killing algae is really easy.  However, the chemicals can only make the live algae turn into dead algae.  Only your filter can turn it into no algae!  Obvious isn’t it? Particularly filter problems, because ultimately, cloudy water is always the filter’s fault. Solve that problem and the cloudy water goes away.

Revised:  6/12/14

Please let us help you, anytime.


Pool Size: ___________ Gallons Technician: ___________
Date: ________________

We write Pool Tips for the exclusive use of our own local customers. They are meant as a summary of general information, to be discussed in our store, with our staff, to determine which items are best for specific pools. Pool Tips are a trademark of Gull Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Our suggestions assume that you have given us a proper description of your pool’s size, history and symptoms. Sometimes we can figure it out, sometimes we can’t. Your doctor has years more training, far better diagnostic tools, and makes way more money—and sometimes he or she gets it wrong, too.

  1. Read all labels carefully, and only use chemicals exactly as described on the label. Never mix chemicals together outside of the pool. Some of them can cause a fire or explosion.
  2. Do Not follow any advice or suggestions here without coming into the store, customizing them to your specifics, and receiving them in writing.
  3. Do Not print these out or reproduce for any purpose whatever. They are all copyrighted, and we take our copyrights very seriously.
  4. Don’t Blame Us for anything. It’s free advice, and worth the price paid. We’re trying to help, but pools are complex, and chemicals and electricity are dangerous.
  5. Our Best Advice: Go find a local pool dealer who knows what they are doing, become a steady customer, and give them a chance to learn about you and your pool. Pick a brand, pick a store, and stay with them.