Swimming Pool Blog
by Mark Garcia, March 12, 2019
Dealing with heavy pollen every spring is an annual battle for me, when large orchards nearby begin to blossom. For northern pools that are winterized until after the pollen season arrives, you may deal with less pollen. Most pools in the U.S. however, do not winterize and like my pool in central California, can load up with a blanket of pollen and petals. Pretty to look at, but problematic; here's why...
What's Wrong With Pollen?
Besides the allergy issues, pollen in the pool can upset your pool water chemistry and clog up filtration systems.
- Accumulates inside of skimmer walls and along tile line
- Oily pollen particles clog tiny pores in pool filter media
- Can mix with dirt to form ugly water line scum and stains
- Pollen contains phosphates, bacteria and other organics
Is It Pollen? Or is it Yellow Algae?
Now before we go further, do you really have a pool pollen problem? Or is it a yellow algae growing on underwater surfaces? Pollen will usually float on the water surface, although it can and will sink eventually. It tends to gather in low circulation areas, and will 'poof' like dust when brushed. Yellow Algae however, will always be underwater, growing in spots or sheets, usually in shady or protected areas, and will not dust-up, but needs to be brushed off the surfaces.
Shocking the pool - very heavily, is the treatment for yellow algae, aka mustard algae. A triple dose shock of 3 lbs of Super Shock per 10,000 gallons is indicated, with a suitably low pH level to make the shock extra potent. Brush the pool very aggressively, with a stainless steel bristle algae brush, and then run the filter all night. The following day replace the filter media, (sand, DE grids or filter cartridge), which can harbor remnants that can regenerate at a later date.
How to Remove Pollen from the Pool?
Skimming pollen from the surface is impossible with a basic skimmer net, because the pollen just goes right through. Aside from running your filter, there are a few methods that work. Here are five ways to remove pollen from your pool.
- Use your Leaf Master, or what we call the Big Sucker. The fine-mesh bag will trap the pollen, when used as a skimmer net.
- Use Natural Chemistry First Aid, a natural blend of clarifiers and enzymes that will coagulate and consume pool pollen.
- Add Jack's Magic Filter Fiber Stuff to the filter, as a filter aid, to trap tiny pollen particles, less than 10 microns in size.
- Clean your Skimmer, pool tiles or waterline vinyl with Tile & Vinyl Cleaner, to both remove and reduce build-up of pollen.
- Use our skimmer socks, aka Filter Savers on skimmer baskets and pump baskets, to trap pollen before it reaches the filter.
- Use Jack's Magic Surface Magic to clear the surface of the water instantly.
Shocking the pool is also indicated as a treatment for pollen in the pool. A regular dose of 1 lb per 10,000 gallons will suffice to break apart the tiny particles and clear cloudy water.
To summarize, remove most of the pollen regularly with a fine mesh net or skimmer sock, and keep your tiles and skimmer inside walls clean, while running the filter a little overtime. If you need or want more rapid removal of pollen from the pool, use a Clarifier, Enzyme or Filter Aid to assist in cleaning the water faster. Shocking the pool can also remove large amounts of pollen from the pool, although it can result in cloudy water in some situations.
The best part is - it's usually temporary! In a couple of weeks, the pollen will be gone. :-)
Thanks for Reading;