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    Aboveground Pools and Cloudy Water

    June 1, 2015


    Causes of Cloudy Water in Above Ground Pools

    • Small filters, especially tiny cartridge filters
    • Slow rate of flow for above ground pumps
    • Incomplete circulation with only one return

    Preventing Cloudy Water on Aboveground Pools

    • Use the pool, lots of swimmers helps circulation
    • Hook up the vacuum to act like a main drain
    • Run the pump longer each day
    • Use clarifiers or a flocculant
    • Improve water balance
    • Keep water sanitary
    • Keep pool clean of debris
    • Buy a larger pump and filter
    • Replace filter cartridge or filter sand

    Are Aboveground Pools High Maintenance? People say taking care of an above ground or in ground pool is too expensive or too much work. In all honesty, it really is not hard nor is it much work but you have to be willing to do a few things. I have a 24’ round pool and it takes me about a half hour per week to check my chemicals and clean the pool. There are certain things you want to do to maintain your pool water to keep it from becoming cloudy and dirty.

    Good Filters Help (tremendously): The first thing is to never go cheap when buying a filter system. Intex pools are not bad pools at all, you just need to get a decent filter system for them. You want to have a good filter system – sand is good, cartridge is better and DE is the best. You need to make sure the filter system you are buying is sized correctly to filter all of the water in your pool in an 8 hour period. Going cheap here is asking for trouble. Most people who buy an Intex pool end up calling us back and getting a bigger Intex filter.

    Running the Pump also Helps: The next thing is probably the most common mistake - and that is not running the filter long enough each day. I have so many customers that call and say they cannot get their water clear. Most of them do not run the filter even 8 hours a day. If the system is sized to clean your water in an 8 hour period, then you need to run the filter for 8 hours at least. And if you want to use fewer chemicals and avoid cloudy water and algae, run it 12-18 hours per day. (I promise, it won't explode!)

    When in Doubt - Shock it Out: If you have a lot of parties or a lot of kids swimming in the pool, you may need to shock more frequently and let the filter run longer. High bather load and high temperatures really does require more chlorine and longer filter times. Shock the pool every 2-4 weeks during high season.

    What do I do?: On a weekly basis I run my filter system 12 hours a day. I balance the pool at the beginning of the season, and shock the pool every 7-10 days - depending on the bather load and the weather or temperature outside. I add Phosfree at the beginning of the season to remove all the phosphates from the water and then a capful each week. During pool season, we balance the water twice a week and check the chemicals after a big storm. I turn the vacuum on twice a week unless we have a lot of kids in the pool and then I will run the vacuum more often for grass clippings or leaves.

    By using the right size pump and filter and running it 12 hours per day, balancing the water, shocking on a regular basis, and maintaining your chlorine level at about 3 ppm - you should be free of cloudy water.

    "My Pool is Still Cloudy!" If you still have small particles in the water, you can always add a clarifier or flocculant to the water. A clarifier will pull the small particles together  for the filter to catch, and a flocculant makes particles heavy so they fall to the bottom of the pool for vacuuming (to waste).

    Maintaining an aboveground pool is not hard at all and it really does not cost that much. If you do not maintain the pool, it costs a lot more in chemicals to clear it up, and wastes a lot of time bringing it back to swim-able condition.  

    Debbie Farnan
    SPP Pool Expert  

    Blog Author
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