Restoring pool health after this summer’s intense bushfires
A bushfire, especially in windy conditions, can cause embers, ash, burnt leaves and smoke particles to travel kilometres through the air, which often find their way into pools.
If there is a substantial bushfire burning nearby, it’s important to keep your skimmer box(es) clear to ensure your equipment can capture as much debris as possible. It’s also a good idea to keep your pump running as much as possible (except during extremely hot weather as pumps can overheat).
In most cases, a pool cover proves to be a solid shield against bushfire debris. However, a pool cover will not always safeguard your pool against chemical imbalances, which can be caused by excessive phosphate levels.
High Phosphate levels
There have been three sources for phosphates over the past few weeks; a little from smoke/ash/embers, some from soil dust, and significant amounts from the aerial bombardment of fire retardants, which contain high concentrations of phosphates. As a result of such a devastating bushfire season, far more fire retardants were used than usual, which is the cause for such high phosphate levels in pools.
Excess phosphate levels can provide a food source for algae growth. Use Phosphate Remover to capture phosphates out of the water. Treatment may cause cloudiness depending on how much phosphate is in the water.
Not all filters are capable of capturing increased levels of dust and other fine particles, which are currently blowing into pools. This leads to cloudy water that needs to be treated. Clarifier and flocculants can help bind these microparticles into larger ones to be filtered or vacuumed out.
If your pool water is only slightly cloudy and you can still see the bottom, use a liquid clarifier.
If your pool water is very cloudy and you can only see the steps, liquid flocculant or granular flocculant. Using flocculants will require the water to settle followed by vacuuming the particles that have dropped to the pool floor.
Throughout treatment of your pool, endeavour to keep your skimmer box(es) clean to ensure your equipment can capture as much debris as possible. After treatment with these products, remember to backwash your filter to remove built up waste material and improve filter efficiency.
Step 1. Remove all leaves and debris from the pool as well as skimmer baskets.
Step 2. Treat for phosphates with Phosphate Remover
Step 3. For slightly cloudy water, use Liquid Clarifier.
Step 4. For very cloudy water, use Liquid Floc or Floc Granules.
Step 5. Vacuum pool manually if using a Flocculant.
Step 6. Backwash filter.
Step 7. Balance the water to make sure there is sufficient sanitiser and pH levels are correct.
If you followed these steps correctly and your pool still appears to be cloudy or discoloured, we recommend collecting a water sample from your pool and seeing a local pool specialist.