Does a Pool Clarifier Really Work?

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If you own a swimming pool, you know that the appearance of the water is important. No one wants to swim in murky, cloudy water. You'll do what is necessary to bring it back to a clear, clean state, which is what pool clarifier is for. Several pool clarifiers on the market will help make your pool sparkle once more. These chemical treatments really work. While some water problems may require other treatments, clarifiers will definitely help you achieve and maintain clear water in the pool.

Why Pools Are Cloudy

  • You need to determine why your pool water is cloudy prior to treatment. If you are not maintaining proper sanitizer levels or you let pH levels get out of hand, cloudy water can result. It may even turn green with algae, which will require the use of algaecide. But even if you remedy all of the other chemical needs in your pool, you may find that the water still isn't as clear as it should be because of suspended particles in the water that are big enough to cause cloudy or hazy water but are too small for the filter to take out of the water.

What Clarifiers Do

  • When the suspended particles in the water are making the pool unsightly, clarifiers come to the rescue. Adding clarifier causes particle flocculation, or coagulation, which makes the tiny impurities clump together into larger pieces. Since they become bigger, filter media such as sand or cartridges can grab the suspended particles and filter them out of the pool, resulting in clear water.

Follow-up Treatment

  • Sometimes the flocculation in clarifying agents works so well that the clumps of impurities are heavy enough to sink instead of remaining suspended in the water. If the particles sink, they are unable to enter the skimmer or other intake areas and may not get filtered out completely. After the addition of clarifier, stay out of the pool and use a vacuum attached to a pole to suck up all the coagulated debris from the bottom, which will prevent the redistribution of the suspended material.

Prevention

  • While pool clarifiers will work to clear up the water in your pool, you are better off if you never need it. As a prevention method, stay on top of your pool chemistry levels. Keep your chlorine or other sanitizer in the recommended range to prevent algae growth, backwash your filter or change cartridges regularly to avoid improper filtering, maintain your pump to ensure adequate circulation and try to limit the amount of foreign material that enters the pool, such as cosmetics, lotions and bodily fluids. Keep overhanging limbs from trees cut back to avoid collection of leaves, pollen and other plant materials. Also encourage the use of the pool; pool that doesn't get used can be more difficult to maintain.

References

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