Swimart’s Q&A series looks at common pool and spa problems and how to fix them.
Here are some commonly asked questions about phosphate and the best way to prevent and treat it.
Q. What problems does phosphate cause in my pool?
A. Phosphate is a major food source for algae – if you have phosphate in the water algae is guaranteed to follow. Phosphate also prevents other chemicals including algaecides, chlorine and salt chlorination from working at full capacity.
Q. How do I prevent phosphate from getting in my pool in the first place?
A. There are three ways you can minimise phosphates from overtaking you pool:
- Prevent runoff from lawns, landscaping or decks from entering the pool
- Regularly remove leaves, dog hair and other debris from the pool
- Arrange for a Swimart pool professional to regularly test phosphate levels
Q. My pool has tested negatively to phosphate, but I can see algae in my pool – is this common?
A. Yes. If you have algae in your pool, you can be sure that phosphates are present. What's happening is that the phosphate in your pool water has been consumed, and masked, by the algae and that is why the water sample is testing negative.
Q. If I have algae, why don't I just use algaecide?
A. While you can treat algae efficiently with the correct algaecide, decaying algae does increase phosphate levels in the water. New algae, therefore, will flourish even quicker and become increasingly difficult to combat. Regularly adding Starver®X and Starver®M to your pool water will help keep phosphate levels to a minimum.
Q. What is the difference between Starver®X and Starver®M?
A. Starver®X is a curative product, which means you only use it for high phosphate levels (2ppm or above).
Starver®M is a preventative solution that works as an ongoing maintenance product to keep the phosphate level as close to zero as possible. We recommend you use it weekly once the level is below 2ppm.
Q. Do I add Starver®X and Starver®M directly to the pool water?
A. It is best to add these products in small quantities via the pool skimmer direct to the filter as tests have shown that phosphates tend to collect in the filter.
If you're unsure how to properly measure phosphate levels in your pool, call Swimart’s pool care experts on 1300 991 104.