Swimming Pool Supplies and Products

How to Clean a Green Pool

Did you take off your pool's winter cover to find a giant green mess underneath it? Don't worry, the proper dose of chemicals will help clean a green pool.

The most economical method of cleaning a green pool is to use a high quality shock along with algaecide. You will need more shock than the normal, maintenance dose in order to clean algae out of your pool. Depending on how bad the algae has become, you will need to add 3-6 times more shock than the back of the bag suggests for general maintenance.

Pro Tip - To determine how much to add, use the following rule:  Look at your pool ladder.
  • If you cannot see any of the rungs on the ladder, add 6 times more shock than the back of the bag instructs.
  • If you can see half of the rungs, add 4 times the amount of shock.
  • If you can see the rungs on the ladder but the water color is the same coloring as Mountain Dew soda, add 3 times the amount of shock suggested for maintenance purposes.


Once you have added the appropriate amount of shock , you can also add a high-end algaecide to speed up the process. Once algae starts growing in your pool, using either shock or algaecide alone is not enough to rid yourself of the problem.Also, be sure to clean behind your ladder and/or steps, and thoroughly back wash or clean your filter (depending on the kind of filter you own). Continue to shock your pool for 7-10 days with the dosage instructions on the back of the bag of shock and continue with a maintenance dose of a high-end algaecide. You want to use a high-end algaecide because it does not contain copper, which can turn your hair green when you swim.

Run your filter continually (even overnight) until the water clears.  Backwash or clean your filter frequently (as necessary) making sure to follow manufacturer instructions.

How To Clean a Green Pool Video Part 1

How To Clean a Green Pool Video Part 2

4 thoughts on “How to Clean a Green Pool”

    CINDY PERROTTA May 12, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    How do you clean a pool that has green water when opening? It is above ground and it measures 15x30x52 and has a vinyl liner?

  • Linda

    Pool was green when I opened it up. Got a hole in the cover and lots of debris got in! I've cleaned out the debris and added chlorine, algaecide, shock, ph plus,minus, clarifier!! It's been a week, has improved but still green (lighter shade then it was) I can at least see down approximately 18 -20 inches.

    • Peter Murray

      Awesome, your getting there! Make sure to clean our your filter and add more shock (green water eats up shock). You will also need a water test once your a little further along to be sure that your levels are properly balanced!

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