If you have gone to take a morning swim and you want to know “Why is my swimming pool water cloudy?”, then there’s no need to panic. Cloudy water in a swimming pool is not uncommon and this article has the information you need to fix it.
There are several causes of cloudy water in a swimming pool, with the most common being too much chlorine in the water. A chlorine imbalance isn’t the only chemical problem you can have though, as high levels of PH, calcium hardness and alkalinity can be too high.
A faulty sand filter can also be a cause of problems. If it is not working properly, then it will not filter out small particles. This means they stay in the water and cause it to become cloudy. However there are environmental factors too, as dust, leaves, the weather, and birds can all cause the water to become cloudy in some way. A build-up of algae and ammonia in the water are also causes of cloudy water.
Fixing the problem
As too much chlorine is the main cause of cloudy water, you should first measure the chlorine level in the water. When the free chlorine level is low (FC) in the water, it means that you have chloramine (combined chlorine), which is responsible for turning the water cloudy. When in this state, it cannot kill germs and bacteria as well as ammonia and algae.
When measuring levels, you can get the value of combined chlorine by deducting the free chlorine reading from the total chlorine reading. An FC reading of below 3 ppm or a combined chlorine reading that is above 0.5 ppm means that the level of chlorine is too low. If this is the case, then shocking the pool is necessary.
To shock your pool, you will need to follow the guidelines on the container of your chosen shock product. If the water is exceptionally cloudy, then you may have to double the amount of dose. Allow the pool to settle overnight and check levels the following morning. The reading should be at least 5 ppm to stabilise the levels, allowing the chlorine to kill germs and bacteria again. PH levels should be between 7.2 and 7.6 with alkalinity ideally reading between 80 and 120.
If you have filtration problems, then you should first add a flocculant to the water to help remove any small particles present. This clumps the fine particles together making it easier for them to be caught by the filter. The next stage of the process will be to ensure the filter is working properly. If your pool is an above ground type, then remove the filter cartridge and thoroughly clean it, removing all debris. In-ground pools have pumps and should be checked that they are operating properly. The pump’s filter should then be backwashed. It should have two thirds of clean, level sand in it. After making these checks, your water should clear.