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Fiberglass Swimming Pools

Solving and avoiding common fiberglass pool problems.
The Pool and Spa Informational Website or

Solving Problems and Making Choices.


Scroll down to browse through some archived SWIMMING POOL questions and answers.  Please click the Pool Problems Link, on top of every page, to access a complete listing of Pool Problem subjects, an alphabetized Website Table of Contents, Pool Equipment Information, About Alan Biographic Material and a Pool Glossary. Use the other links to access additional subject information. More information about some new and unique products, for pools and spas, can be found by visiting The Website Store. You'll never know what you'll find and that's always fun. Be better prepared and avoid costly problems!


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Caring for fiberglass inground pools.
A pool requires proper care, in order to preserve its appearance and extend its life.  Water testing helps avoid conditions that might damage the pool equipment or make sanitizing less effective.  A ColorQ 2X is a 2nd generation, Bluetooth, Waterproof, all-digital tester, that can measure all the common test factors. There is a model, for every sanitizing need.  The MegaChlor Salt Chlorine Generators are ideal for many pools and require no installation.  Plug-n-Play ready.  Salt chlorine generators are a better way to do chlorine, providing more control and helping to avoid algae and sanitation problems.
ColorQ All-Digital Water Testers Swim-Spa and Pool Salt Chlorinator Salt Chlorine Generators
ColorQ 2X Testers are Bluetooth and can be used with the FREE WaterLink Solutions HOME App. MegaChlor Salt Chlorine Generators, for Pools, Swim-Spa and Hot Tubs. Reliant Salt Chlorine Generators, for all types of pools, up to 40,000 gallons.
Product and Ordering Information Product and Ordering Information Product and Ordering Information

If you have a pool or spa water testing need, we should have the product.
Scroll down to read through some Question & Answer information.
Stains can be removed with a MetalTrap Stain Reversal Kit and heavy metals can be eliminated, at the source, with a MetalTrap Filter.  Add a drop-in, Premium Pool Graphic Mosaic Mat your pool will take on a great new look. Get better circulation, by replacing standard return jet fittings, with The Circulator.  Better circulation helps everything work better.
Stain Reversal Kit, for Pools and Spas Premium Graphic Mosaic Pool Mats Circulation Boosting Return Jet Fittings
MetalTrap Stain Reversal Kit, for pools and spas Drop in graphic, mosaic mats, for pools. The Ciruclater replacement return jet fitting improves pool water circulation.
Product and Ordering Information Product and Ordering Information Product and Ordering Information

If you have a pool or spa water testing need, we should have the product.
Scroll down to read through some Question & Answer information.
Magnetic Water Conditioners help solve scaling problems, due to high levels of calcium hardness and are available in 4 models. An Automatic Filter Cartridge Cleaner makes cleaning easier.  Choose from a variety of pool and spa models.  MetalTrap Filters are an effective and easy way to deal with source water, that contains heavy metals, and avoid creating a problem, every time new water is added.
Magnetic Water Conditioners Automatic Filter Cartridge Cleaners Metals Removing Filters - 3 Sizes
Magnetic Water Conditioner, for calcium hardness and scale issue.s Automatic Filter Cartridge Cleaners, for pools and spas. MetalTrap Fiters
Product and Ordering Information Product and Ordering Information Product and Ordering Information

If you have a pool or spa water testing need, we should have the product.
Scroll down to read through some Question & Answer information.

How to maintain a Fiberglass Pool and avoid common problems?

Fiberglass pools are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, depths and configurations and can be accessorized with a full range of convenience features. Different geographic locations and water source qualities can produce varying maintenance requirements. Generally speaking fiberglass pools are more chemically inert and have less interaction with the water chemistry than gunite pools.  For your sanitizing needs, for can consider a salt chlorine generator, an Ultraviolet Sterilizer or a combination of methods, for even better results.  The periodic addition of a metal treatment can help protect the appearance of the fiberglass. If problems arise, refer to the Pool Problems Page, as a source of problem-solving information, broken down into various categories.  Scroll down the page and click on the linked keywords, catch phrases or images, in the archived answers below, to access additional information, on that topic or product.

Do you know what's in your water?  Optimizing the water chemistry helps maintain proper swimming conditions and allows sanitizers, to work more effectively,  If you would like to avoid problems, with stains and discoloration, due to the presence of metals, you should be testing for iron, copper and, possibly, manganese. Understanding, if the potential for a problem exists, allows for appropriate, preventative treatment to be taken.  This helps select the best treatment option, to avoid stains and discoloration.  For information about our full selection of testing options, visit our Test Equipment Store.  For information about discoloration and stain treatment options, visit our Stain Treatments StoreUnderstanding the nature of the problem, should be step one.

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▼     Helpful, Problem-Solving Information, in a question and answer format.     ▼

Something More Than Algae Stains?

I just found your website yesterday and was quite impressed.  Here is my problem. I have a fiberglass in ground pool, which I love. This year the walls and side feel slimy and have a yellow/brown film on them. I took my water to be tested at 2 local pool supply stores and they both said everything looked good. They suggested an algae treatment and 3 bags of shock. I have done this twice now and brush daily and cleaned the filter.  Help it won’t go away. I used a bath towel where I could reach and rubbed and it seemed to help a little.  Please any suggestions would be helpful.  Thanks.

Lynn, 9/9/2018

You may have had algae or a bacterial slime, which made the walls slippery, but the algae treatment probably took care of that.  Now you may have a metal stain.  Place a dozen 500-mg Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) tablets on a stained area.  If it removes or changes the film (stain), the directions below will treat the whole pool.  Heavy metal stains, such as iron, copper and manganese can come from natural sources or corrosion of pool heaters and equipment.  In the vast majority of cases, merely adding a metal treatment will not remove the stains., especially when covering large areas.  A reducing agent, such as METALTRAP Stain Remover must first be applied, at the dosage rate of 1 pound per 10,000 gallons.  Before applying, the free chlorine, must be allowed to drop to 0 PPM. otherwise, the chlorine will destroy the stain remover.  Chlorine neutralizer can be used to quickly drop the level

Allow the water, containing the METALTRAP Stain Remover to circulate 24/7.  Brush the surface to help speed the process.   AfMETALTRAP Filters remove iron, copper and manganese.ter the stains are gone., do one of the following.  Either add 1 quart of Liquid METALTRAP, per 10,000 gallons of water, for each 1 PPM of metals present or use POOL REFRESH, to help you permanently remove the metals, by vacuuming and filtering them out.  A MetalTrap Stain Reversal Kit contains everything needed.   Wait 24 hours before adding chlorine or raising the pH.  A lot of chlorine will have to be added, because it will react with the stain remover.  Test your source water for iron, copper and manganese.   A METALTRAP Filter uses garden hose connections and can remove up to 1 PPM of metals, based on its rated capacity.  If you use the METALTRAP Filter, when adding all new water, you can keep more metals out of the pool. Because the process can get lengthy, it is a good idea to add a dose of a polymer algaecide, to help maintain water quality, in the interim period.  If this website was helpful, in solving your problem, please consider joining our E-Letter Mailing List.  You'll receive E-Letters, with helpful information, new product updates, suggestions and sale announcements. I hope that I have provided the solution.

Sincerely.   Alan Schuster, 9/10/2018

Fiberglass Or Gunite Pool?

Hi Alan, my wife and I bought a home outside of Tampa, Florida this summer and we've been trying to research which type of pool would be best. According to the fiberglass Salesman, his pool will require less chemicals and electricity (because the pump wouldn't run as much). In addition he said that the shell would not break down over time. He also stressed that a gunite pool would require periodic acid washing (5-7 years) and other costly but routine repairs. When we asked the gunite Salesman about fiberglass pools all he did was laugh. Note: Even if we end up buying a gunite pool, it will not be from THAT salesman/company. Thank you for your assistance.

Lewis G., Tampa, FL, 1/2/2021

Great salesman! It is true that gunite pools will require periodic refinishing or acid washing. In addition, there is mor
e interaction between the water and the gunite pool surface, especially initially until an chemical equilibrium is reached. Maintaining the chemistry in a fiberglass pool should be easier. The smooth surface should make algae control and pool vacuuming easier. Gunite pools can stain or crack, but these can be corrected or repaired. Refinishing can give the gunite pool a whole new look, but it costs. A gunite pool allows the benefit of infinite variation of size shape and color. I wouldn't give much weight to the filtration savings. Some of the newer alternative sanitizing systems will require that the filter be operated for adequate or minimum periods of time. This is a big decision. Over the life of the pool, the cost of maintenance should be factored in, as well. I suggest that you consider cost and aesthetics, but go with the product that strikes your fancy. Good luck and I hope that I have been helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 1/2/2021

How To Calculate Pool Gallons?

We just closed on a house with an inground fiberglass pool.  What do I need to measure and how do I calculate the number of gallons of pool water?  I want to do the pool maintenance myself and need to be sure of its size.  Thanks for any help, you can offer.

Hank G., Alpharetta, GA, 5/23/2017

Basically, you need to know the length, with and average depth.  A cubic foot of water equals 7.5 gallons.  Go this this website page:  Calculating Pool Volume.  It will provide all the information, for pools of all sizes and shapes.   A ColorQ, all-digital pool water analyzer will help you et off on the right track.  Good luck with the house and the pool.

Sincerely.  Alan Schuster, 5/23/2017

Vinyl Or Fiberglass Pool?

We are trying to decide on a vinyl or a fiberglass pool. Size is no issue, as we are looking for something relatively simple: about 14' X 28'. What concerns us most is the appearance and the maintenance. We have ruled out gunite - been there and done that! Thanks for the opportunity to ask a question.

Bethany K., NJ, 3/20/2007

Both fiberglass pools and vinyl inground pools can look great and provide many years of service. Both are relatively inert to
Liquid MetalTrap chemicals and have no effect upon the pH, total alkalinity or calcium hardness level. Care must be taken avoid having chlorine products contact vinyl liners. Fiberglass is less prone to fading over time. To help preserve the appearance of fiberglass, it is suggested that a metal treatment, such as phosphate-free Liquid METALTRAP, be periodically added to complex any metals present in the water. In areas where minerals are a potential problem, this is good advice for pools of all types. In the final analysis, the choice is yours to make. You should go with the product that suits your tastes and is within your budget.  Expect to pay more for a fiberglass pool. It is always a good idea to check the dealer's track record and to see some completed pools. Good luck with the pool.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 3/21/2007

Exposed Aggregate or Fiberglass?

Dear Alan, could you give a little insight and comparison between a fiberglass pool surface and an exposed aggregate.  So far, it seems like the most reliable and smooth finish is the fiberglass. However I am concerned about the fiberglass dust that will be generated during the installation.  How much of a problem is it and can it be effectively eliminated after installation? Once the fiberglass surface is installed, can erosion and cracking occur causing particulates to be released?  Also, do you know what the best quality resins would be for the fiberglass?  The quartz/plaster composite seems also to be durable but will porosity be a problem so that algae build up will occur?  Thank you for your time. I would greatly appreciate any information you can provide. Sincerely.

Billie A., 4/22/2009

Fiberglass pools are very attractive and the surface is smooth. That can make control of algae easier and vacuuming less
of a chore. On the other hand, exposed aggregate is somewhat rough and can harbor algae. However, I am not sure that the algae consideration is important, if the pool is properly maintained. Do you want a smooth finish or a textured look? There are pros and cons on both sides. Your concern about fiberglass fibers is understandable, but the fiberglass products, used today, have coatings that are quite long lasting. There are some types of aggregate finish that are smoother, less prone to chemical problems and capable of being used to produce unique looking finishes. I suggest that you discuss this with local contractors, as they have the practical experience. Ask for the names of people with recent installations. Do the same with exposed aggregate.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 4/23/2009

Never Should Be Acid Washed?

I have a 12x24 fiberglass pool that I just had acid washed and now it has spots. It looks kind of like the finish is pitted. Could the acid wash have done anything to the finish of the pool? if so is there any thing I can do? the spots are a grey/green color and have moved with the force of the jet and seem to be getting worse. any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Denise, 8/6/2009

One of the benefits of owning a fiberglass pool is that it does not required acid washing. In fact, acid washing should not be done, as it can damage the finish. This question never was raised before, in my website, so I did verify the facts. Your pool probably will have to be refinished or painted.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 8/6/2009

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How Much Calcium Hardness?

It seems like your are only one who can answer my questions. I need to add calcium chloride to my pool. My pool place says to mix it with water but on the package it says not to mix with water just to broadcast it over the pool, what do you recommend? Everyone says something different. The man from the fiberglass pool company said my hardness should be 350. I think this is high. don't you?

Edith B., 4/24/2008

I have never heard of anyone recommending that it be dissolved. Usually there are large amounts involved. It is quite
soluble and will not cause damage, if it should contact the bottom. A gunite pool needs a hardness of 150-200 PPM and vinyl or fiberglass pools only need 80 PPM as a minimum and 150 PPM max. I suggest that you not add more that this. At 350 PPM, you are close to scale forming conditions. If your pH should rise above 7.8 or the TA above 150, scale formation could occur. I checked with a leading manufacturer of fiberglass pools and their suggested range is 120-150 PPM. I always felt the range for a vinyl lined pool should be 80-200 PPM and there is no need to raise something from the 80's anything higher.  A fiberglass pool, like a vinyl-lined pool, does not contain masonry materials in the walls. Up to 400 PPM, usually does not cause clarity or scaling, so long as the pH and TA are optimum. Metals such as copper, which is used as an algaecide, added by some mineral sanitizers and ionizers or results from heater corrosion or natural sources, can form dark stains in any type of pool, with high calcium hardness. That's another reason to avoid calcium hardness levels, as high as 350 PPM. You might want to check, with the pool manufacturer, as their recommendations might be specific to their brand of pools.  I hope that this clears things up and keeps it that way.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 4/24/2008

New Coping?

We have a fiberglass pool which is in great shape, but what is outside is falling apart. We have a wooden deck right up top the pool. There is only a frame of wood around the pool. No coping!!! All the decking is coming out and a new surface put down. Do you think it will be a problem, if stone coping is used, in place of the wood?

Walter H., Toms River, NJ, 3/23/2009

This should not be a problem, as fiberglass pools are commonly finished with a stone coping, that can provide a higher degree of safety. I hope that this information will prove helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 3/23/2009

A Great Decorative Option

Pool Art for all types of pools.

Use a Premium Pool Art Graphics Mat to decorate your pool floor. The image appears to be tiled on your pool floor, but that's just an illusion. Actually, you simply set one of these colorful graphics on the water and push it to the bottom, with a pool brush. Its weight keeps it there. Choose from 9 attractive designs, plus a custom monogram model.  Most are available in 3 sizes:  47" diameter, 23" diameter or 10.5" diameter.  No adhesives needed and installation is just that simple. To remove or place elsewhere, just lift it off.

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Painting Or Refinishing The Pool?

Our fiberglass pool is showing its age. The surface has become stained and is very dull. We are either going to have it refinished or painted. Will painting hold up? Will I still have stains to deal with, as we do have well water? I want to make it easier for myself. Thanks for the help.
Ultra Poly One Coat is a Hybrid-Epoxy Coating for refinishing plastered or fiberglass pool, spas or fountains.
George, Sanford, NC, 1/30/2006

Painting the fiberglass pool, with the right product and in the proper manner, can make things easier down the road. There
should be less staining and the water chemistry should be easier to maintain. Ultra Poly One Coat is a long lasting, durable epoxy hybrid coating that is available in several colors. It is something worth considering.  I hope that information will help your with the decision making.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 1/31/2006

Cleaned Up Nicely?

We just bought a house with a fiberglass in ground pool and are having a few problems that I can't seem to get a straight answer for. When we bought the house the previous owner told us it was easy maintenance, just one chlorine tablet a week. We did that for about 3 months, the pool looked beautiful we didn't worry about it. My husband had some questions about the filter system so we called out a pool service guy, and he tested the water also. He said our chlorine was zero, as was the pH. But, the pool still looked beautiful. He suggested sodium bicarbonate to raise the pH and a shock treatment for the chlorine. It is a small pool, about 10000 gallons or less, so he said to add 10 lbs of the sodium bicarbonate, which I did. It turned the pool water green, so I did the shock treatment, which seemed to bring the color better, but then I got a brown stain around the water line and the whole rest of the pool. I tested the alkalinity which was very high so I used muriatic acid to bring that down. Now all the chemicals are stabilized, the chlorine is still a little high from the shock treatment over a week ago. The pH and alkalinity are fine and the stains seem to be gone. Does this make sense? No pool store here in Hawaii sells the ascorbic acid. What do you suggest? Thanks for your help.

Shelley F., Hawaii, 2/23/2014

If the stains are gone, you don't need any stain treatment. What you should add is a double dose of phosphate-free, Liquid METALTRAP, in order to complex any remaining dissolved metals. You probably had a low level of iron. Add a maintenance dose monthly
METALTRAP Filters remove iron, copper and manganese. and prior to adding new water and it will help keep the fiberglass free of stains. The use of the METALTRAP Filter can remove metals from the pool water and lessen the likelihood of metal stains. If you have a heater, you may have exposed the copper components to corrosion and that could have caused the staining and discoloration. The previous pool owner probably over simplified the pool maintenance. He neglected to tell you that the chlorine tablets are acidic and will require the occasional addition of chemicals to maintain the pH and total alkalinity. He also failed to tell you that shock treatment may be required, in order to maintain a free chlorine level of 1-3 PPM. The fact that the water was clear was due to the low pH: it makes dissolved minerals more soluble, but creates corrosive and irritating conditions. The fact that you have a fiberglass pool helped avoid corrosion and surface etching, that might have added to the problem. Now that you are on the right track, keep the free chlorine at 1-3 PPM, the pH at 7.2-7.6 and the TA at about 100 PPM. Want to make chlorine maintenance easier? Check out salt chlorinating systems. I hope that you have found this information helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 2/24/2014

Pool Sanitizer Choice?

We are planning to have a fiberglass pool installed in late spring. There seems to be many ways to sanitize the pool. Is there a "best" way for a fiberglass pool or some that are not as good? Thanks for the opportunity to ask a question.

Greg M. Mobile, AL, 4/2/2010

You're right there are a lot of choices! Because fiberglass pools are so non-porous metal stains ca
n show up, especially if well water or waterRelaiant salt chlorine generators, 3-models, for all types of pools, up to 40,000 gallons. containing heavy metal is used. To help avoid this possibility, it is always a good idea to add a metal treatment, such as phosphate-free Liquid MetalTrap, as the pool is being filled. This advice applies to all types of pools, if metals are known to be present. A maintenance dose of metal treatment should be added monthly and prior to the addition of new water. The addition of the metal treatment can interfere with the performance of certain types of sanitizers such as, ionizers, copper-oxidation, and copper algaecide. Fortunately, there are lots of other good choices. You can use chlorine, bromine, a salt chlorine generator, an ozonator or an ultraviolet sterilizer. Sometimes using a combination produces even better results with less effort. I hope that this information will help get you off to a good start. Enjoy the pool!

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 4/2/2010

Stubborn Stains?

I have a fiberglass pool, that is about 10 years old. It still looks great, except for a few spots in the shallow end. It have tried to use metal removers, vitamin C and chorine shocking, but nothing helps much, if at all. The dealer says it is "cobalt". whatever that is. Do you have a solution?

John. L, Boca Grande, FL, 1/23/2010

Graphic Pool Mats.
Cobalt is something that usually only affects some older fiberglass pool. A tiny hairline crack, in the gel coat, was allowed
water to reach the underlying fiberglass.  While you might not be able to chemically remove the problem, you might be able to cover it over with a Premium Graphic Design Pool Mat. They are available in various sizes and designs.  Draining the pool is not necessary, because the Graphic Mats are simply dropped into place and positioned.  I hope that this information will be helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 3/27/2010

Hiding The Damage?

Alan, I have a bleached out spot, right in the middle of the deep end. It is a fiberglass pool and a 3" chlorine tablet must have been accidentally dropped into the pool. Is there a simple solution? Do I have to drain the pool? Thanks.

Harry L., Stuart, Florida, 1/16/2011
Pool Art Graphic Mosaic Mats, for all types of pools.

Actually, this is a simple no-drain solution. All you have to do is add a Premium Pool Graphic Mosaic Mat. It creates the illusion of a mosaic
tile decoration, but is really only a mat. Its weight keeps it in place. All you have to do is position it in place, using a pool brush and pole. It comes in a variety of sizes and styles. No adhesive or installation is required.  It will give the pool a new look and hide the damage. Even it there was no damage, it would be a welcome addition, to the pool.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 1/12/2011

What To Anticipate?

Alan, I am relocating to Florida and I am planning on having a house built with a pool. I have never owned a pool before and don't know what to look for to avoid future problems. Any suggestions? I would also like to know what to expect as far as time and cost to maintain a pool. Thanks.

Ben G., 12/9/2008

A lot will depend upon the pool and your budget. Your first decision should be what kind of pool: gunite or fiberglass. A pool isSaltron Reliant salt chlorine generator, for pools. a long term
investment, so choose carefully and check out the builder. Assuming that it is an inground pool, it may require a few hours a week to maintain the water chemistry and make the proper adjustments. If it is within your budget you could use a salt chlorinator and an Ultraviolet Sterilizer, as a means of eliminating most of the chemicals. Cleaning the pool, depending upon location can involve work. This too can be simplified with the addition of an automatic pool vacuum. Reading up on water chemistry and proper filter operation will help get you off on the right track. Browsing through the archives will help educate you about pool maintenance. Cost will depend upon pool size, location and usage. A ballpark figure might be $1000-2000 per year, but it is not etched in stone, as it can depend on size, construction, Sun exposure, usage, sanitizer choice, etc. This does not include electrical costs. I hope that I have been helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 12/9/2008

Tan And Brown Stains?

We have a 5000 gal fiberglass pool with heater, that slowly develops stains (brown or tan) on walls, pH 7.4, TA 120. These stains can easily be removed by a stain remover (concentrated ascorbic acid, together with a metal treatment. After treatment, pump is run for 12 hours then filter is backwashed and new DE added. We treat this problem when it becomes unsightly, approx every 6 weeks. Are you aware of any chemical/product that could be added on a continuing basis that would prevent this staining. It would be nice to have pool walls clean all the time. Could corrosion from heater be causing problem? Any other possible cause of problem? Thank you.

Tom K, 3/22/2009

The color, of the pool stains, are not consistent with copper, so I would rule out the heater. However, it is consistent with iron and so is the treatment that you have used. I suggest that you have the pool and source water tested for iron. Any level can be a problem. Iron can be present, even if the test results are negative, due to interference from other chemicals that might have been added or from the fact that it is on the walls and no longer present in the water. It sounds like iron, so I suggest that it be treated like iron. The recurrence could be due to not having added enough of the metal treatment or having added makeup water. Add a dose of the metal treatment now and add an additional dose monthly or whenever new water is added. Fiberglass has a negative electrical charge and can attract positively charged metallic ions, causing the development of a stain. The periodic addition of a phosphate-free metal treatment, such as Liquid METALTRAP, should help negate this effect and help keep pool stain free.  A METALTRAP FILTER can be used to help remove metals, from the pool water, and prevent a recurrence of this type of problem. I hope that the information will prove useful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 3/22/2009

Use Of Muriatic Acid?

I'm new to owning a pool. I've just purchased (two years ago) a house equipped with an in-ground pool, lined with fiberglass. The previous owner advised me that muriatic acid should never be used in the pool. He used granulated chlorine only. During the summer months I was going through chlorine like crazy and having problems with cloudy water and algae. One year ago I had a salt system installed. Since then the water has been crystal clear, but there is now a slightly grayish /tan film accumulating on the pool surface. Particularly in the areas of the returns and the spa. The film is impossible to brush off, but will leave a clean streak if you wipe your finger over it. The pH level has been historically high (off the chart on my tester/ dark pink). Is this the cause? Can I add muriatic acid to the pool? If not, what can I do to correct/ bring down the pH level? Sincerely.

Jerry W., 1/21/2007

There is a huge difference between adding muriatic acid to lower the pH and pouring the full-strength acid on the walls. The
latter should not be done. But, you must get the pH to 7.2-7.8 and you will need to acid to do that. Salt chlorine generators, do tend to causeRelaiant salt chlorine generators, 3-models, for all types of pools, up to 40,000 gallons. the pH to rise. High pH can cause scaling to occur and lead to metal stains. See below. I suggest that you add a few doses of metal treatment, as the pH is being lowered. Give it some time and see if that helps. High pH will make the chlorine less effective and that can lead to other problem, as well.  Three factors contribute to scaling conditions: high calcium hardness (usually over 400 PPM), high pH (usually over 7.8) and total alkalinity (usually over 200 PPM.  All three together make it even worse. You can lower the pH and TA with acid. The calcium hardness might be controlled, but not necessarily lowered, by adding a calcium sequestering agent. I suggest that you test the water for pH, TA and calcium hardness. The Langelier Index will tell you if the water is scale forming and provide insight to help improve the situation. If the stains persist, you might want to treat with a METALTRAP Stain Reversal Kit. I hope that this information will prove helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 1/22/2007

Indoor Fiberglass Pool Sanitation?

Alan, I've almost gone through every aspect of your website & have learned a great deal on what I hope to be a fun filled future as a pool owner. I'm in the process of building a new home with an inground, indoor fiberglass pool. The pool will be in its own walled in environment with a dehumidifying heating system.  I've read somewhere that chlorine shouldn't be used as a sanitizer for an indoor pool because the byproducts can be carcinogenic. Can you verify this for me? My hope was to use a salt chlorine generator but now I'm having second thoughts. Are there any other concerns I should have with an indoor pool (i.e.. is a chlorine stabilizer needed). Thanking you in advance.

Chev H., Ottawa, Canada, 11/15/2004

Read enough and everything seems to cause cancer. That odor of chlorine, that you smell indoors, is not chlorine. It is
chloramines andMegaChlor salt chlorine generator, for spas and swim spas. it is known as a bad actor. It is odorous, irritating and ineffective. High cyanuric acid levels are another potential problem. The good news is that chloramines are completely destroyed, as the water passes through the salt cell and there is no build up of cyanuric acid (chlorine stabilizer).  Your pool is indoors, so you do not need any stabilizer! The fact that the pool is fiberglass will simplify the maintenance of the pool water chemistry because of the inert nature of the fiberglass. Basically all you will have is salt, chlorine and some innocuous pH adjustment chemicals. There is a long safe history of chlorine being used in pools and drinking water. Bad press about chlorine, usually refers to its manufacture and the release of mercury. This has nothing to do with swimming pools. A salt chlorinator will go a long way towards helping to maintain the best appearance of the pool finish, because it helps avoid ultra high chlorine levels and corrosive low pH conditions. I hope that I have been of assistance.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 11/15/2004

Initial Fill Up?

Can a fiberglass pool be installed without filling it with water during the installation? In other words, how is the pool supposed to be filled up?

Nelson S., 4/15/2005

A fiberglass pool is designed to have internal and external pressure. Unless a pool is structurally enhanced, at any given time the pressure outside the pool and the pressure inside the pool should be equal. A leading fiberglass pool manufacturer recommends that there be no more than a 6” difference between the water and the backfill when the pool is being filled.  However, you should check your situation with the pool manufacturer.  A properly trained installer should be proceeding on this basis. I hope that I have been helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 4/15/2005

Pool That Has Settled?

My fiberglass pool, 3 years old, seems to have settled slightly on one end near the steps. How can this be fixed? I appreciate your help.

Kelly, H., 11/2/2007

In most situations, the only true way to fix a pool that has settled is to pull it up out of the ground. On some occasions the steps can be adjusted without removing the entire pool. I suggest that you discuss this with the builder, as to possible causes and remedies. Possible causes include: erosion by ground water or springs, changes in the water table, heavy rainfall or flooding, unstable ground and installation techniques.  I suggest that you discuss both the cause and solution with the builder. Good luck and I hope that this information will prove helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 11/3/2007

Possible Chlorine Damage?

I have a fiberglass pool with a floater to dissolve chlorine. the floater got stuck on the steps and left brownish stains (bad ones). Is there a good way to remove these? Can I scrub the fiberglass surface with anything? Thanks.

Mike M., 3/9/2005

Having a chlorine feeder remain in prolonged contact with any type of pool surface can result in damage. While the color can
MetalTrap Stain Reversal Kit, for pools and spas. be consistent with iron staining, given the circumstances, the harsh effects of direct chlorine contact has to be considered. First I suggest that you try and remove the stains with an acidic tile cleaner. This fails, try a solution of ascorbic acid or a METALTRAP Stain Reversal Kit. If that fails, chlorine damage to the gel coat seems the most likely possibility. You could try using an automotive compound product on the area and follow with an application of automotive wax. This treatment should remove the top surface and help restore the appearance and luster of the gel coat. This method of adding chlorine is not one that I recommend, for exactly this reason. You would be better off with an inline chlorinator. Even better would be a salt chlorine generator. Good luck and I hope that this information proves helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 3/10/2005

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