How to Use Algaecide

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Things You'll Need

  • Algaecide

  • Rubber gloves

  • Eye protection


Algaecide may be required in your pool in winter months. Periodically monitor your swimming pool, especially if it is covered, to check for algae growth; add algaecide when needed.


Possible side effects may occur when using a metal, mineral-based algaecide like copper or silver. Some copper formulas may turn swimmers' hair a different color, while silver may react with the sunlight and stain the pool. An additional ingredient like a sequestering agent may be needed to counteract these adverse reactions.

Algae growth is a common problem in swimming pools, and pool owners generally have to deal with algae at least a few times a year. Algae spores blow into the pool, or are deposited by rain--or even human contact. With the presence of carbon dioxide, warm weather and off-balance pH levels, algae thrive. Swimming pools affected by algae may develop green water or slimy deposits that are yellow, green, pink and black. Knowing how to use algaecide can help you keep your swimming pool clean without excessive use of chlorine.

Step 1

Choose the correct algaecide for your pool based on the type of algae present. Some algaecide products are all-purpose, meaning they treat several kinds of algae. However, if you have a specific type of algae, choose the appropriate algaecide. For example, copper-based algaecide best treats yellow algae, while silver algaecide is effective on green and black algae.

Step 2

Determine the amount of algaecide to add to your swimming pool. Follow manufacturer's directions on the algaecide bottle for proper measurements. Dosage will be based on the gallons of water your pool holds. Before handling the algaecide, put on the rubber gloves and eye protection to avoid skin burn and possible eye damage.

Step 3

Pour the algaecide dose into the water, depositing it in several areas around the pool. Your swimming pool pump should be running at this time to help circulate the algaecide. Wait about 30 minutes before allowing anyone to swim after the algaecide application.

Step 4

Vacuum the swimming pool 24 hours after the first application of algaecide to remove the dead algae debris in the pool. If algae is still visible in the water, repeat the application of algaecide in the pool, following manufacturer's instructions.

Step 5

Scrub the bottom and sides of your pool before the first application of algaecide if algae growth is heavy and pronounced. For this scenario, wait at least 24 hours before swimming in the pool.

Step 6

Follow the manufacturer's instructions on your algaecide for applying maintenance doses once the problem growth has been defeated. Every three to five days is recommended in hot temperatures, or if the pool is being used heavily.

references & resources

Tiana Mortimer

Tiana Mortimer has been Executive Director for a nonprofit boychoir organization since 1999 and a freelance writer since 2004. Her nonprofit work has been published in a variety of regional publications and she has ghostwritten hundred of articles for the internet. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Operations Management and Marketing from the University of Houston.