Understanding Metal Stains
Metal staining can occur on all types of pool surfaces. Stains may show up on the pool’s surface as large as colored splotches or as an overall plating. Staining may occur quite suddenly or slowly over a period of months, even years.
What causes staining?
Metals in the water, such as iron and copper, may “plate out” onto the pool’s surface to form a stain. Most stains occur when any or a combination of the following factors take place:
• High metal content in the water
• Raising the pH or Total Alkalinity
• Shocking with chlorine
Does the type of pool surface make a difference?
Staining does have varying characteristics on the different pool surfaces. Staining occurs far more frequently on fiberglass surfaces, but it can easily occur on any type of pool surface.
Can stains be removed?
In many cases, stains can be removed; however, stain removal often requires patience and an investment in some specially formulated chemicals. Stains on smoother surfaces, such as vinyl lined or fiberglass pools tend to be easier to remove. The longer stains remain on any type of surface, the more difficult it becomes to remove. Remember, some stains cannot be removed by chemical treatments.
Ask for a small sample of ascorbic acid powder (Pool Baron's Stain Wipe) from Memphis Pool or use a Vitamin C tablet to test and see if the stain is removable. Place the tablet or sample powder directly over a small stain area (perhaps a step) with the pump circulation off. If the stain around the test area is removed within a couple of hours, this indicates it will likely respond to our metal stain removal treatment.
Are all stains metal?
No, some stains can be caused by organics from plants and leaves. Such stains require a different treatment. Like metal stains, some organic stains can be embedded and cannot be removed by a chemical treatment.
What if the stains don’t come off?
If you have some, but not complete success, another treatment may be necessary. If little to none of the stain is removed, ask your local pool professional for help. Some stains, such as those on some plastered or painted surfaces may require a “drain and acid wash” treatment.
Can the stains reappear after removal?
Yes, they can. Unfortunately, some pools act like a magnet for stains. Therefore, there is no way to guarantee that a stain will not return after you’ve invested time and money to remove them. The best prevention of stains is maintaining proper water balance (pH, Total Alkalinity, Calcium Hardness); using Pool Baron's White Lightnin' as your shocking agent; and adding a preventative dose of Pool Baron's Metal X on a weekly basis.