How To Prevent And Treat Algae in Above Ground Pools

by Pool Builders on 07-18-2011 in Articles

It is important to remember that algae itself is not dangerous. The problem lies in the fact that algae releases waste that can attract unwanted and potentially harmful bacteria. There are thousands of species of algae but only a few enter swimming pool water. There are 3 main types of algae that are usually found in pool and spa water. The three most common forms of algae are green algae, yellow algae and black algae. Green algae floats in the water and also forms on the sides of the pools. Yellow algae (also called Mustard Algae) usually appear on the pool walls and have a powdery appearance. Black algae is one of the most difficult varieties to eliminate and has a tar-like appearance. Pink and gray slime may be present in a pool but this is due to a fungus called Paecilomyces lilacinus, not algae. It is important to maintain proper water balance and sanitizer levels, as this will ensure that algae spores cannot take hold. Once algae does appear normal levels or chlorine will not control it.

The Most Common Steps To Rid Your Pool Of Algae:

1. Adjust the pH to 7.2-7.4.
2. Brush the sides of the pool and the vacuum vigorously.
3. Shock treat the pool. POOLIFE TurboShock or POOLIFE Rapid Shock are the most effective.
4. Add your POOLIFE AlgaeBomb 30, POOLIFE Super AlgaeBomb 60, or POOLIFE Algae Ban according
to label directions. Your authorized POOLIFE Dealer can recommend which product is best for your pool.
5. Run the filter 24 - 48 hours, brushing and vacuuming frequently
6. Brush and vacuuming pool daily if possible. Backwash your filter regularly.

Algae may still be present despite a high chlorine reading. This usually means that the pool water contains too much stabilizer (cyanuric acid), which interferes with the efficiency of the chlorine. Ensure that you are following proper pool care by shock treating with POOLIFE calcium hypochlorite based shock product. If the problem persists, contact your authorized POOLIFE Dealer for further directions.


It is highly recommended that you shock treat your pool weekly during the pool season to kill bacteria and other potentially harmful pool contaminants. The best time to shock treat your pool is at sundown as this allows the chlorine to work without the sun's ultraviolet rays interfering. It is highly recommended to shock at the same time on the same day each week.

An additional shock treatment should be given when any of the following situations occur:

- After heavy swimmer loads
- After strong rains and wind
- During periods of extreme sun
- When swimmers complain of burning eyes
- When unpleasant odors occur
- When water appears, dull, hazy or cloudy

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