causes Algae problems?
pool owner has, at one time or another, done
battle with the occasional algae bloom. Algae
spores constantly enter the pool, brought in
by wind, rain or even contaminated swimsuits
or equipment. When conditions are right, an algae
bloom can occur seemingly overnight. These conditions
include out of balance water, warm temperatures,
sunlight and presence of nitrates and/or carbon
dioxide. Of course, a lack of proper circulation,
filtration and sanitation may be the primary
cause of the algae. The best process is one of
is a living aquatic creature that multiplies
rapidly on warm, sunny days. Containing chlorophyll,
algae utilizes photosynthesis to grow. That is,
they take in carbon dioxide and expend oxygen
as a byproduct.
problems can Algae cause?
first noticeable problem is that no one seems
to want to go swimming. The second problem is
that it requires work and effort and money to
rid the water completely of algae. It is therefore
best to use preventative chemicals and techniques,
described later. Algae can cloud and color the
water, making rescue attempts difficult and reducing
depth perception of a diver. Algae itself is
not harmful to swimmers, but pools with algae
may also be harbor to pathogens like E-coli bacteria.
addition to clogging up sanitation pathways in
the water, algae also clogs up the pores in a
filter, decreasing filter effectiveness and requiring
more backwashing or medium replacement. Algae
creates a chlorine demand in the water for itself,
actually consuming chlorine that should be working
on other contaminants. Algae are kind of like
weeds in your garden. Unsightly, unwanted space
takers that create more work for the gardener,
and sap up nutrients and resources from the flora
we wish to grow.
types of Algae are there?
are over 21,000 known varieties of algae! In
the pool business we avoid all of the complication
by referring to algae by the color they exhibit.
extremely common variety, green algae will
usually rear its ugly head immediately following
a hazy condition in the water from a lack of
proper filtration and/or sanitation. It is
frequently found free floating in the water,
although it also will cling to the walls. It
reduces water clarity and is thereby distinguished
from severe copper precipitation, which will
impart a clear, green color to the water. Varieties
of green algae also appear as "spots" on
surfaces, particularly rough areas, or places
where circulation is low. They also show up
as "sheets", where large wall sections,
or even the entire pool, is coated in green
wall clinging variety, also called mustard
algae, is usually found on the shady side
of the pool. It is sheet forming, and can
be difficult to eradicate completely. Once
begun, a pool owner could spend the entire
season fighting yellow algae; re-infection
is common. This variety is resistant to normal
chlorine levels and must be dealt with firmly.
Hit it hard!
the most aggravating strain of algae, it can be extremely difficult to eradicate completely. This is
not entirely accurate, but the difficulty
in removing it fully is due to the strong roots
and protective layers over top of the black
algae plant. Black algae will appear as dark
black or blue/green spots, usually the size
of a pencil eraser tip. Their roots extend
into the plaster or tile grout, and unless
the roots are destroyed completely, a new
head will grow back in the same place. The
heads also contain protective layers to keep
cell destroying chemicals from entering the
organism. Like yellow algae, black strains
can bloom even in the presence of normal
sanitizing levels and proper filtration.
I was once told that this form of algae commonly
enters a pool inside the swimsuit of a person
who's recently been to the ocean.
really an algae at all, but a form of bacteria.
Appears as spots or streaks in corners and
crevices. It is slow to spread and rare that
it will bloom over an entire pool.
is algae prevented?
chemical balance and sanitizer residuals will
prevent many opportunities for algae to bloom.
high pH and low chlorine (or other sanitizer)
can give algae a great start to genesis. General
cleanliness of the pool is also important. Organic
material and bacteria can contribute to algae
growth. Regular brushing of seemingly clean pools
is not only good exercise for you, but prevents
dirt from harboring in the pores of the plaster,
which is a good start for an algae colony.
use of specialty
chemicals or algaecides is
recommended to provide a back up to normal sanitation
and filtration processes and is completely necessary
for many pools. These chemicals are described
This chemical, when added to the pool water
in proper dosage, prevents algae from converting
carbon dioxide into the fuel it needs for growth.
Manufactured under the trade name Proteam Supreme.
An extraordinary product.
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