brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Stains on the pool surfaces, pool equipment
or on the swimmers, or off-color swimming pool
water. Discolored but clear pool water.

Pool Stains

Postby cde » Mon 12 May, 2008 13:57

I spoke w/ my local pool supply store re: the same problems.

She had me use "Metal Free" in the pool wait 24 hours and then take a powder stain remover, put it into a sock and rub it over the stains on my pool. It took a little bit of rubbing on the bad spots, but it did work.

Scott S.

Dirt Scale???

Postby Scott S. » Fri 16 May, 2008 14:04

Thanks cde,

I now think I may be dealing with something different than "Dirt Scale"... but, I'm going to keep ph at 6.8 and brush for another week or so.

I think I may have precipitated copper into my plaster when I shocked upon opening the pool... Not positive, but I think I remember adding a Winter Algaecide when I closed, and it 'may' have been a copper type.

Rather than start dumping in a bunch of chemicals until I guess right on the stain cause, I may just do an acid wash, pool is 10 years old and could use a good wash.

Thanks again,


Trying to get rid of the stains

Postby Shel-Shel » Sun 25 May, 2008 16:26

I am trying to get my pool opened but these stains everyone is talking about is what I have on my above ground pool. The pool is currently empty and I am not sure if I should go ahead and fill it up and try to get rid of the stains or leave it empty and keep on scrubbing on it??? They are awful! Any and all help would be appreciated.

Postby Guest » Tue 27 May, 2008 15:44


I am in no way an expert on this, just a frustrated 'stain scrubber'.

I went ahead and drained and acid washed my pool last Friday. It looks like new, no more stains, and it was very easy. Cost me about $150 bucks for a 25,000 gal in-ground pool. I KNOW I would have been sold at least that much in chemicals in an effort to 'lift' the stains without draining the pool.

I was very suprised to find that when I started to do the acid wash, when I compared a section just washed to a yet to be washed area, it was obvious that over the years my pool had experienced some 'metal' staining issues..... light green/teal colored stains covered the entire pool surface.

Of course, the acid wash also removed the 'sand colored' stains, which I believe were a darker copper stain that I precipitated into the plaster by just throwing a bunch of shock into the pool upon opening, without first testing the water for balance. My bad.

Good Luck with whatever you decide to do. IF you decide to treat the stains with chemicals after filling.... AND HAVE SUCCESS, would you mind posting back so we all can learn what worked?

Scott S.

Re: brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby Guest » Thu 25 Sep, 2008 09:23

estler wrote:I woke up yesterday and had a few stains on the bottom of my pool, now today they have multiplied. It almost looks like rust stains. They will not brush out. The pool is clear but has a high PH. Can anyone tell me what it is and how to get rid of it? :(

Postby poolowner91752 » Sat 25 Oct, 2008 20:22

I had a similar issue. it started when I upped my salt machine to increase the chlorine in the pool. Well that ate up my acid faster than I realized. I ended up with a VERY stained pool. I just keep the acid much higher now and the chlorine lower. The stains are starting to come off.

I have pebble tec and this method works!

Brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby polly » Sat 23 May, 2009 15:17

Hello - I have a gunite pool - empty stained brownish, reddish colored. I'm thinking some type of metal issue. I have had it acid washed - no better only in some spots but not uniformly whitened. I really do not want to paint the pool major $. So I am looking for any ideas.

Brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby Guest » Mon 25 May, 2009 08:27

what would the formular be for the acid wash?
tired pool owner

Brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby tired pool owner » Tue 26 May, 2009 19:30

I have been having problems with my pool water for the last couple seasons. Chlorine seems to be high all the time , ph always low 6.5-6.8 cannot keep any higher. experiencing light brown stains on pool drain and skimmer, jets etc. nothing seems to work other then stain remover. liner 10 years old noticing liner fading badly. appreciate any suggestions
Swimming Pool Superstar
Swimming Pool Superstar
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Joined: Thu 26 Feb, 2009 11:11

Brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby Me... » Tue 26 May, 2009 20:41

How is the chlorine added? Is it total chlorine or free chlorine, there is a HUGE difference. If the pH is always low it could be the high chlorine additions or low Alkalinity. You need to be posting the test kit readings, and there should be at least 4 if not 5. Also pool gallonage.

Brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby Guest » Wed 27 May, 2009 10:05

Swimming Pool Pro, Chlorine is added through skimmer(3'Tabs) Total chlorine and Free is 5.0,Alkalinity 100. Calcium 120. PH 7.0. Stabilizer 50, no copper or iron in water. Pool holds between 12000-13000 gals. When I shock used chlorine shock predisolved.
tired pool owner

Brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby tired pool owner » Wed 27 May, 2009 10:10

Pool User wrote:Swimming Pool Pro, Chlorine is added through skimmer(3'Tabs) Total chlorine and Free is 5.0,Alkalinity 100. Calcium 120. PH 7.0. Stabilizer 50, no copper or iron in water. Pool holds between 12000-13000 gals. When I shock used chlorine shock predisolved.

brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby Susan » Mon 17 Aug, 2009 16:44

:( I hate my pool. Wish the heck I would never had spent the money....nothing but trouble. always have a stain here...algae there....lizards fall in....leaves blow in. I want to cover it up with dirt and mow the yard like I used to.

brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby bagman » Sun 11 Jul, 2010 11:09

Brown cicular stains about a quarter to half doller size. Anyone know what the cause is? Gunite pool 18x36 9' deepth. Spots are mostly in shollow end to half way down. Nine in total. PH is 8.1 trying to lower. Pool is only three years old.
Spots on pebble tec

brown stains on bottom (pebble tec)

Postby Spots on pebble tec » Mon 30 Aug, 2010 03:47

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.

For algae which is not suspended, but only clinging to the walls, follow the same advice above, first shock with brushing, then add an algaecide, brush again, vacuum to waste (preferred) or vacuum and then backwash the filter. Use of a steel bristled brush is recommended for algae on plaster pools (use nylon brush on vinyl). Filter, Filter, Filter!

For black algae, the brushing part is very important. You must tear through the protective layers so the chemicals can destroy the plant from the inside out. Pumice stones work well to knock off the heads of black algae. (Don't forget to vacuum them up later, and backwash them out of the filter ASAP). Also effective on the black algae nodules is sprinkling granular trichlor over the spots (of course if they're on the wall this is next to impossible). Rubbing the spots on the walls with a trichlor tablet or stick can also be effective to knock off the heads and get trichlor directly to the roots. Follow up with a dose of copper algaecide, or high strength polymers. Simazine, an herbicide, was a very effective black algae treatment, but is no longer available in America.

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