why oh why is my pool water black

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mound

why oh why is my pool water black

Postby mound » Thu 04 Jan, 2007 14:01

Quick overview - I bought a home a year ago November. In ground vinyl lined pool was closed through the winter. Spring came and I pulled the cover off, which the previous owner poorly installed, and the water was like a muddy pond. Took several hundred dollars of chemicals and lots and lots of vacuuming to clean it up. This fall, I bought a new winter cover. It extends probably 6' past each edge of the pool, and I made sure to use lots of those water tubes to make sure it was held down securely. There is now water collected on the cover, but from what I can see, there is no exposed area where winter junk could get in.

This week has been beautiful weather. I was outside cleaning up the yard a bit, and just decided to take a little peak under the cover to see how the water looks. I have friends with pools and they tell me their water is generally blue and requires little shocking to open in the spring. As far as I could tell from my little peak, the water is quite dark. I shined a flashlight under the cover and the light doesn't even go 2' through the water.

Why would this be?? I am not looking forward to having to spend several hundred dollars on chemicals to open the thing again in the spring, and am a bit disheartened that the water isn't still nice and blue under the cover. There's no way leaves could have gotten in there.

I followed the directions from my local pool store, put everything in the water they told me to (the chlorine and algae preventer) and well as far as I can tell did everything right.

what's going on here?? anybody have any idea?


Pool Owner
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Location: Orange County, CA, USA

Postby Pool Owner » Fri 05 Jan, 2007 15:47

mound, start by getting a sample of the water and taking it in for complete testing and/or test it yourself and post the results on the bulletin board (maybe change to one of the swimming pool water problems sections). Also, include your pool water temperature. Once your test results are available, hopefully the problem will become apparent. If not, it should be possible to identify the next step in determining your problem. You may also want to include your general geographic location. I assume your circulating system is not running when the pool is closed.
Pool Owner
Orange County, CA, USA
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dynamictiger
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Location: Perth, Western Australia

Postby dynamictiger » Fri 05 Jan, 2007 17:05

It is possible your water is not black. It may just be that the cover is preventing any light getting in so you are looking at a black hole as such.

HTH
mound

Postby mound » Mon 08 Jan, 2007 09:39

thanks for the responses. we've figured out what the issue is, and it relates to a section of pool deck that is in need of repair. The deck is made out of bricks and pavers, and some sections of mortor are in need of repair, as well, portions of the deck aren't graded away properly anymore (it's an older pool).. basically rain water and melted snow is turning into muddy water and being "wicked" into the pool through the dirty "channels" where there used to be mortor between bricks. I figured the large plastic cover over the whole deck area would prevent debris from getting in, and in large part I believe that is working, but dirty water is still able to channel itself over the lip of the pool.

I guess I have a big springtime project ahead of me. (building a new pool patio)
Pool Owner
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Joined: Wed 06 Dec, 2006 19:34
Location: Orange County, CA, USA

Postby Pool Owner » Mon 08 Jan, 2007 12:26

mound, I’m glad you found the problem. Since there is likely to be organic debris washing into the pool with the dirt, I recommend that you check the pool chemicals about once a month (especially as you get to spring) and/or open your pool as early as possible to prevent algae (or other bad stuff) growth. If needed, you can dilute chlorine or acid in a 5-gallon bucket before adding it to the pool then mixing with a pool brush. Warning: Do not mix chemicals in the same 5-gallon bucket (especially at the same time) because of possible chemical reaction.

I’m on my soap box here… For the future, you may want to invest about $30 into getting a good reference pool book. If you have not yet done so, check your local library for books on the subject of pool maintenance/construction to see if there is one you like. I have a short review of a few books on my blog (noted below). While it is very large, I think you will find “The Ultimate Pool Maintenance Manual” a good choice. Since it is almost 700 pages, you need to use it like these pool bulletin boards, search for the information you need and only read the part that covers your problem.
Pool Owner

Orange County, CA, USA

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mound

Postby mound » Tue 09 Jan, 2007 10:43

Thanks, I'll definitely look for a good book.

Since there is likely to be organic debris washing into the pool with the dirt, I recommend that you check the pool chemicals about once a month


How does checking the chemicals once a month through the winter help anything? The pool is completely shutdown, it's not like I can add chemicals and circulate them to bring it back into any kind of balance. ??

Somebody mentioned to me dumping a gallon or so of normal household bleach in the water every month or so until I open it. I thought that sounded a bit ubsurd, but I don't know. Perhaps add more of the algae-preventer I added when I closed it? That stuff is supposed to last 6 months.
hate my pool

Why oh why is my pool water black

Postby hate my pool » Fri 15 May, 2009 19:57

We have had our pool for years and evey year I hate it more and more. Every year it is a new issue. It is a Fox Kidney - the largest they make of course!! We used Baquacil which was recommended by the pool company the first few years. Then I decided that we had too much vegetation around our yard and needed some good old affordable chlorine, so the last few years that is what we have used. When we close we put a lot of chlorine in.

Last year we invested (you are always investing when you have a pool - did I mention I hate my pool?) in a new mesh cover, so that the leaves did not weigh down the cover like on the old vinyl cover. It was nice and easy to use a broom to brush the leaves off every so often.

They opened our pool this year, this week, and OMG I never saw our pool so bad. I just wanted to cover it up, no I want to get a backhoe and fill it in and forget we ever had a pool. It looks like mud sludge. I do not even know where to begin.

HELP!! Please, someone, anyone.
thumbslinger

Why oh why is my pool water black

Postby thumbslinger » Sun 17 May, 2009 17:15

We have a chorline-free pool... we're using the Zeta-Core filter. Only add Hydrogen Peroxide, technical grade and it works great.

However, last year the pool got ahead of us. We're in south Austin on a hill with trees and vegetation etc.

Instead of chemically treating the water, we emptied and started fresh. It only makes sense this is something that has to be done at some point. Chemicals constantly added are not safe in the long run so start with fresh water if it's been more than 2 years. Use the water for plants, lawn etc or nearby creeks (we have one behind our house)...
hate my pool

Why oh why is my pool water black

Postby hate my pool » Fri 05 Jun, 2009 18:24

Well, we dumped a bunch of shock in the pool, and vacuumed for days. I have surmised that the reason we have so much gunk is we purchased a very expensive "mesh" cover, thinking we will be able to control all of the leaves that fall and remove them easily. This was a $5000.00 purchase. W have a huge retaining wall which has concrete block, tie bar, and faced with natural rock. there are several pipes (similar to dikes) which drain the wall of water, so it doesn't cave in. Dirt must come out of the pipes and spill out onto the walk and eventually into the pool cover. In years past we didn't have a problem with the pool getting really dirty as it was a solid cover. Looks like we have more work to do with the pipes and constructing something to avoid having the dirt and debri going into the pool over. We did have the sand bags on that side of the pool last winter, but it must not have been enough.

Anyone ever hear of Caribbean Blue? Their system is used in large hotel chains and consists of a gold and (I think) silver element, which only get changed every few years. Natural sources are used to balance the water such as baking soda and salt (I think). We are considering, however since our pool is in such a harsh environment we are concerned that it will not do the trick. We used Bacqucil the first few years we had our pool, which was recommended by the pool dealer, it was a nightmare.

Thanks for all the tips.

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