Salt Water Swimming Pool & Water Bugs..Earwig Problem

by Annie

I have a salt water inground pool with a vinyl lining. I also have an earwig problem.

I am wondering if there is any risk to spraying the rim of the pool with diluted biodegradable environmentally friendly dish soap to get rid of the earwigs hiding in the dead-space just above the water line.

Please help,earwigs freak me out :-(

P.S. Diluted dish soap kills earwigs within 30 sec

Thanks for your question Annie

I have heard of people using dish soap (in a bottle with water) to kill all kinds of bugs. We use it to freeze flies when they get into the house as the soap adheres to their wings so they can't fly away. It make it much easier to kill them.

From what I know, many pool owners have poured about 1/4 cup of soap directly into their pool at night, then turn the pool light on. The water bugs and earwigs are then drawn to the light and drown. You go out the next morning and scoop them out.

If you use too much soap (and too much is debatable) you run the risk of the swimming pool bubbling up with the soap residue. But for having any long-term problems or issues, when the soap used is controlled and used sparingly, I'm not aware of any.

Have you thought about spraying around the deck as well? I do know that DE (Diatomaceous Earth) is excellent for keeping ants away. It might help with your earwig problem.

Thanks for the question and I hope this helps


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Our Below Ground Liner Pool Is Plagued With Wood Lice

by Peter
(County Down Northern Ireland)

No matter how spotlessly clean the pool is left there are hundreds of wood lice lying (mostly dead) at the bottom of the pool the next morning. The pool is below ground with an openable glass enclosure over both deck & pool in a garden situated aproximately 40 metres from the shore of a sea water lough in Northern Ireland.

The garden is laid out with several bushes & plants and a small lawn. The pool temperature is normaly around 27 / 28 degrees centigrade (80 degrees F). I am at a loss if they could ever be controlled, though on an internet search a few years ago I found a couple of recipes, however, I am reluctant to try!

Over the years I have come to accept spending 20 minutes carefully netting and disposing the damn things.

Any suggestion would be gratefully received.

Thanks for the question Peter

I recently answered a similar question about bugs in this post:

Salt Water Swimming Pool & Water Bugs..Earwig Problem

I actually had to look "Wood Lice". In Virginia we call them Potato Bugs or Pill Bugs. Here in Oregon they're sometimes called that or Roley Poley Bugs, but they're the same thing and can be irritating. I've scooped out so many things from pools I lost count years ago, so I know what you're talking about.

There are pesticides that you can use, but it sounds like you may not want to go that route, so here are a couple of natural things you can do. First is to get a food grade, not pool grade, diatomaceous earth. Spread this around the perimeter of your garden, and maybe the pool as well. This will cut open the exoskeleton of the bugs and they will slowly dehydrate.

We had a flea problem inside the house. We didn't want to use any chemicals. It works, although it did take some time. These kinds of bugs like warm, damp areas with lots of food. Get a newspaper wet and place one section on the ground. Put food scraps on top of the paper, then place another wet paper on top of it. Kind of like a sandwich for bugs.

They should be attracted to this and not your pool. Simply pick it up and throw it away. Or if you have a local farmer with chickens, give it to him. Chickens love those things. Another way that I've heard of, but never tried, is to use a product called Spinosad. This is a natural insecticide.

It's received some pretty good reviews, but again, I've never personally tried it. Hope this helps and let me know how it turns out for you.


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Worms Stains In Pool

by Monty

Because the winter cover was put on with a gap underneath the border a lot of worms have got into the pool.

In the deep end There are now circular stains on the bottom and in one place a very large black mark. The rest of the pool is clean but I cannot get rid of the worms marks.

Last. Night we put the maximum amount of chlor choc that it said on the tub and the large black mark has faded but the individual worm marks are still there.

Your advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for the question Monty

There are several ways to can go to remove organic stains.

I don't have any information as to the kind of pool you have, plaster, vinyl, fiberglass, etc.. so I can only give you more general cures.

First is to get a sock and fill it half way with calcium hypochlorite/granular chlorine and place it on an affected area for a couple of minutes, then scrub well with a nylon brush. For plaster pools you can use a stiff wire pool brush. You can do the same process with a chlorine tablet. If you have a vinyl pool you need to be quick because you run the risk of bleaching the liner.

2nd is to use pool Stain Eraser. It's a polymer with an abrasive surface that won't gouge or damage your pool surface. You attach it to the telescopic pole.

Next is the Jandy Stain Master. It's a plaster pool spot removal that has a long hose and uses muriatic acid.

Organic stains are the easiest to get rid of. Yes it does take some effort but normally not nearly as much as metal stains.

I hope this has answered your question to your satisfaction.

To post a reply, or if you have a similar question, you can see your post on the Q&A page in the "Bugs & Critters" category.

Check back to this post for updates or answers.

If you feel your situation is more complex and want immediate assistance (within 24 hrs) you can make a donation of your choice and I'll answer your questions by phone.

Have I helped you find a solution to your pool problems? Did this information help you? Please consider making a donation to help keep this site going. Thank you.

Have a great Summer.


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