Rust In The Pool That Looks Like Algae

by Tommy

Pool water is clear but the walls, steps, and floor looks like rust. I think it is algae. It will not rub off. I put in Yellow Out, shock, algaecide 60, 6 gallons of bleach and nothing seems to work. Also cleaned the filter.

Now I am lost all of this was over 2 week period. Thank you for any info.

Thanks for the question Tommy

First, I'd like to have your complete chemical readings, the actual numbers:

Chlorine, CYA (cyanuric acid/stabilizer), pH, Alkalinity, Calcium Hardness, and Metals (iron and copper) and names of any algaecides you may have used along with clarifiers, phosphate removers, and/or flocs. It makes troubleshooting much easier and the process of clearing up your pool will go much faster.

You can get your chemical readings at your local pool store. And get a good pool test kit. A Taylor FAS-DPD K-2006 is one of the best.

Pool Water Testing

Water Testing Kit

Without these numbers I'm just guessing at what the problem is. You probably know that bleach is watered down chlorine, about 1/2 the strength. Are you sure you put in enough bleach to reach 12ppm? Do you have an inground or above ground pool? Does it have steel walls? It could be rust from the steel, or the early stages of an algae bloom.

First, you need to determine if the spots are organic or mineral. So here's what you can do. Get some ascorbic acid, which is nothing more than Vitamin C. Check your local pool store for this. Put the acid in a sock and place it on the spot for about 1/2 hour. If the stain lifts or fades, it's mineral, or high iron and/or copper.

If not, get a sock, put a chlorine tab in it, and put that on the spot. If it fades, it's organic (algae), and then you'll need to shock.
For an ascorbic acid treatment, you can go to this page that outlines everything you need to do:

Brown Algae Won't Come Off Of A Vinyl Liner

For a pool shock, you can go here:

Swimming Pool Chlorine

Pool Shock

Pool Chlorine

If you can get back to me with a little more detail and answers to the questions above, I'm sure I can help. Hope to hear from you soon.


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Rust in the Bottom of our Pool!

We put up an above ground 15 feet 42 inch plastic ring pool. When the fire department came to help us fill it up a bit, they pointed the hose straight into the pool, and rust from the truck got into our water and keep settling on the bottom.

Our water is crystal clear, and all of our levels are good, except pH is a bit high. We have tried to vacuum it out, but our vacuum is a mesh bag that just puts the rust back in the water.

We have tried a couple of other vacuums that go through your filter, but none fit OUR filter. We don't know anyone with a vacuum that is used outside of the filter system. HELP! What can we do! We haven't even gotten in it yet!

Thanks for your question

If you can't get fresh tap water or if you're on well water, I would recommend next time to go with a pool water delivery service. They can deliver fresh water that is already balanced so you won't have this problem again.

Swimming Pool Water Delivery

You can add a sequestering or chelating agent which binds to the metals and rust and prevents it from being oxidized with the chlorine. Many pool professionals discourage shocking or chlorinating pools with high levels of metals until the rust and red color is gone, so time is of the essence.

You can get a good metal sequestrant from your local pool store. I'm not sure what the question means that the vacuum won't fit your filter, but I'll take a stab at this. You can get a vacuum hose, pole, and vacuum head. The hose should fit the suction port in the skimmer. If it doesn't, you can get an adapter.

If the rust has settled on the bottom of the pool, you might be able to vacuum it up. If you can, vacuum to "WASTE" if the filter has a Multi-Port valve. Remember that if you do vacuum on the WASTE position, you're going to lose water so be prepared to refill the swimming pool with fresh water. The dirty and rusty pool water bypasses the filter and goes straight into the sewage system.

Hope this helps and have a great Summer


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swimming pool care, basic pool care, above ground pool maintenance, inground, salt water

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