Salt water pools are a great alternative to traditional chlorine pools, but they still require some maintenance to keep the water clean and clear. If you’re new to owning a salt water pool, or are considering purchasing one, this helpful guide will help you answer questions such as:
- Why is my salt water pool cloudy?
- Once I identify the cause of my cloudy pool, how do I fix it?
- What regular maintenance can I perform to avoid a salt water pool that is cloudy?
Common causes of cloudy salt water pools
First, let’s take a look at some of the issues that commonly cause cloudy water in salt water pools.
- Incorrect pH levels: The pH level of your pool water should be between 7.2 and 7.6. If it’s outside of this range, it can cause the water to become cloudy. To fix this, you’ll need to adjust the pH levels using a pH test kit and chemicals.
- Poor filtration: A dirty or clogged filter can also cause cloudy water. Be sure to clean or replace your filter regularly to avoid this issue.
- Excess calcium: Too much calcium in your pool water can also cause it to become cloudy. You can remove excess calcium by using a calcium reducer or by draining and refilling your pool.
- Algae: Algae can quickly lead to cloudy water if left unchecked. Be sure to brush and vacuum your pool regularly to remove algae growth. You may also need to use an algaecide to get rid of stubborn algae blooms.
- Weather: Sometimes, cloudy water is simply due to weather conditions like pollen or dust in the air. If this is the case, you’ll just need to wait for the weather to clear before the water will look clear again.
- Low chlorine levels: Saltwater pools rely on chlorine to keep the water clean, so it’s important to maintain proper chlorine levels at all times. If your pool is low on chlorine, you can add more using chlorine tablets or shock. Low free chlorine levels can often be due to a clog in the saltwater chlorinator cell. Over time calcium deposits can build up on the chlorinator cell. As the buildup gets worse, the cell will produce less and less chlorine, which leads to a buildup of contaminants and a cloudy pool. You can clean off the chlorinator cell with an over-the-counter cleaner, or use something acidic like muriatic acid or vinegar.
- Not enough time running the salt water generator: You can run into similar issues as point six above with a lack of chlorine if you don’t run your salt water generator for enough time, or on too low of a level. You can experiment with increasing the power level of the salt cell by 5 or 10% (try to keep it below 80% or it will burn out the cell more quickly). Alternately, you can test running your salt cell for an extra hour at a time until your water begins to clear up.
Some other solutions for clearing up cloudy pool water
If you do a little research you’ll often find people talking about pool clarifiers and pool flocculants. Unless you’re a long-time pool owner, you may not know what these are or how they work.
How does pool clarifier work?
Pool clarifier is a product that is used to help clear cloudy water in swimming pools. It works by binding to tiny particles in the water and causing them to clump together, making them easier to remove. This can help clear up cloudy water fairly quickly, especially if it’s caused by algae or other debris.
How does pool flocculant work?
Pool flocculant is a product that is used to clear cloudy water in swimming pools. It works by binding to tiny particles in the water and causing them to clump together and sink to the bottom of the pool, making them easier to remove with a vacuum. This can help clear up cloudy water fairly quickly, especially if it’s caused by algae or other debris.
Avoid cloudy water with regular maintenance
One of the best things you can do to avoid a cloudy salt water pool is through regular maintenance and cleaning. Here are some steps you can take to help you keep your water clear all season long.
- Purchase test strips and check the pH levels regularly – then adjust as necessary.
- Clean or replace the filter.
- Remove excess calcium using a calcium reducer.
- Brush and vacuum the pool regularly to remove algae growth.
- Maintain a chlorine level between 3-5ppm and shock to increase the chlorine levels when necessary.
- Use a pool clarifier or flocculant as specified by the manufacturer.
By following these tips, you can keep your salt water pool looking its best all season long!
We also know that it can be hard to find the right accessories for a salt water pool, but fortunately, you’re in the right place. Global Pool Products makes a collection of for pool handrails, ladders, and pool slides that are all built for use in salt water pools. Contact us today to learn more.