Pool Cleaning | 04/16/14

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Whether you’ve left your pool untouched and unmaintained for a few weeks or you just threw an epic pool party, your pool may be looking a bit less than it’s typical pristine self these days.  If you’re noticing a bit of a greenish tinge to your otherwise clear waters, don’t fret.  We have all the steps you need for how to clear up a green pool.

Step 1: Brush the Pool

Though some pool owners skip this step, if you really want to know how to get rid of pool algae for good, you need to brush the pool prior to any chemical treatments.  Brushing the pool gets the algae off the sides (unless you have black algae on the finish) and the floor of the pool, which helps the chemicals do their job better and faster.

Step 2: Use an Algaecide

If your pool water is green, algaecide is the way to go.  Always use this treatment prior to chlorine, as the chlorine can actually stop the beneficial effects of the algaecide.  The end result: you’d still be left with a green pool.

There are two types of algaecide:

  • Metallic (silver and copper)
  • Quaternary ammonia

There are pros and cons to both.  Ammonia is less expensive and not as likely to leave stains in the pool, but it does suds up while the metallic option does not.

It’s also important to note that if you have black algae or mustard algae in the pool, you’ll need to opt for an algaecide that’s specifically formulated to kill it.

Give the algaecide a day to work it’s magic prior to moving on to step 3.

Step 3: Shock your Pool

Once the algaecide has been left for 24 hours or more, a chlorine shock treatment that raises your pool’s chlorine levels to 5ppm will kill off any remaining algae or bacteria that could still be in your water.  You’ll want to find a granular form of concentrated chlorine that’s referred to as “chlorine shock”, and add the amounts specified on the package.

While you’re “shocking” your water, keep the filter running and clean out any dead algae.

Step 4: Vacuum your Pool

And now for the final step for how to clear up a green pool:  vacuuming.  Some dead algae will float to the bottom of the pool rather than end up in your filter.  After cleaning the filters, vacuum up any dead algae and finish off the job by testing the chemical levels and ensuring they’re properly balanced.


Shasta Pools is a Phoenix pool builder who provides a variety of services including swimming pool remodeling, commercial pool building, and pool service and repair. Since its establishment in 1967, Shasta has helped over 80,000 families realize their dream of pool ownership. By providing exceptional value, quality craftsmanship and superior customer service, the Shasta team continues to fulfill the corporate mission of astonishing and delighting their customers and exceeding expectations. You can learn more about Shasta Pools & Spas by visiting them online, or by connecting with them on Facebook or Twitter.