What Does Cloudy Pool Water Mean?

Have you ever gone away for the weekend and returned home only to find your pool water cloudy and murky? You were only gone a few days. How did the water turn from clear to cloudy so quickly?

The most typical causes of cloudy pool water include imbalances, inadequate filtration, an abundance of particles, or environmental attributes.

Keeping up with regular, scheduled pool maintenance will be a key factor in how clear and clean your swimming pool will be.

Here, we examine typical causes of cloudy pool water and provide some advice for restoring its clarity and radiance.

Causes of cloudy pool water

cloudy pool with ladder
Cloudy pool
  • Poor filtration: Your pool will be unclean and hazy if your filter’s function is affected since the water will grow stagnant.
  • Improper chlorine or ph levels: inadequate ph or chlorine levels come in second place to a filthy filter. Free chlorine is rendered useless and the amounts fall when the ph levels are out of harmony. Chloramine is created when there is not enough free chlorine, and it is this mixed chlorine that gives your pool its cloudy look.
  • Total alkalinity too high: Pool water that has a high total alkalinity (ta) is frequently cloudy. This is due to the possibility of calcium scaling and ph level imbalance.
  • Calcium hardness is too high: due to the instability of high calcium concentrations in water, an imbalance in ph or ta will also have an impact. The preferred ch range depends on the climate and ranges between 100 and 400 ppm.
  • Excess particles from swimmers: your water may be hazy due to extra particles that amass as you swim.
  • Environmental debris: the water quality of your pool might be impacted by environmental detritus like leaves, twigs, and flowers, especially if your pool’s water circulation isn’t ideal.
  • Rainwater: nitrates, phosphates, and other chemicals may flow off into your pool as a result of rainfall. Additionally, a lot of rain may dilute your chlorine levels and reduce its effectiveness.


cleaning cloudy pool
Man cleaning dirty pool.

How to fix it

Environmental causes: the easiest technique to get rid of your pool’s cloudiness is to thoroughly clean it to get rid of any foreign objects and algae.

Mechanical causes: make sure the filter is thoroughly cleaned and that the pump and all of its components are operating properly. Pool filters should be cleaned and maintained on a regular basis. Call Sun Valley Pool Service today to get your pool filter cleaning scheduled.

Chemical imbalances: you can use a ph increaser (ph plus) to raise your ph levels if they are too low, and a ph reducer (ph minus) to lower them if they are too high. A ph reducer can also be used to decrease high ta levels. If calcium-based chlorine (ch) is the source of your pool’s cloudy water, you may use less of it to keep it clear.

Clarifiers: a pool clarifier will cause tiny particles to come together as bigger particles, that can then be removed from the water. It is recommended to use a clarifier if your pool is only slightly murky.

Shock your pool: shocking your pool simply means adding chlorine and other chemicals to the water in an effort to kill any bacteria or chloramines.

Do not shock your pool and use a clarifier simultaneously, because the shock will break up the clarifier and it will not work.

Is it safe to swim in cloudy pool water?

dirty pool
Murky pool

The short answer is yes, usually. While cloudy water is unappealing to most to swim in, it is safe unless the water is cloudy because of an excess of chemicals.

If too many chemicals is the case, swimmers run the risk of experiencing eye and skin irritation and in serious cases, gastrointestinal issues, and urinary tract infections.

Not to mention, a high chlorine level shows that your pool may be contaminated with filthy substances including dirt, perspiration, blood, sweat, urine, and feces.

Swimming in a foggy pool might have an impact on visibility depending on the level of cloudiness. Which means there is a higher risk of drowning if you can’t see the bottom. It can also impede the vision of those supervising the swimmers, making distressed swimmers more difficult to notice.


How long should it take to clear cloudy pool water?

It can take two to three days for your water to clear, based on how cloudy it is. When using a clarifier, you’ll need to maintain your water’s chemistry in balance, run your filter continuously, and add the right quantity of clarifier every day till the water is clear.


Recommended Pool Chemical Levels 

A “balanced” pool contains the right amounts of pH, total alkalinity, and calcium hardness, cyanuric acid, and chlorine.

These are:

pH: 7.2–7.8

Total Alkalinity: 80–120 ppm

Calcium Hardness: 180–220 ppm

Cyanuric Acid (Stabilizer): 30–50 ppm

Chlorine levels should be kept consistent between 1-3 ppm


Tips for maintaining a clear pool 

The best approach to avoid cloudy pool water is through routine maintenance. This entails regularly cleaning the pool as well as making sure that the total alkalinity levels and chlorine levels are appropriate. Your water will become more resistant to changes in pH thanks to this.

Using high-quality products in your pool is another essential step in avoiding cloudy water.


clean pool texas
Clear, clean pool water.

Wrapping Up

Hiring a professional maintenance crew, like Sun Valley Pool Service will be a wise investment if you’re uncertain of the chemical imbalances in your pool or the kinds of solutions you should be utilizing to keep it clear and gleaming. Check out our pool cleaning service page for more details.




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