Milky Pool Water After Shock Treatment? Easy to Fix!

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Are you alarmed? Milky pool water after shock treatment is, in fact, a common occurrence in pool maintenance. This cloudiness is proof of the shock treatment’s success in neutralizing bacteria and algae.

Although unsettling, this temporary haziness is generally harmless, indicative of the treatment’s efficacy. To hasten the return to clear waters, understand the appropriate steps for clearing a mildly hazy pool vs heavy cloudiness.

Milky Pool Water After Shock Treatment?

Is Milky Pool Water After Shock Treatment Normal?

After administering shock treatment to your pool, you might notice the water turning milky. Disconcerting as it is, this occurrence is not uncommon.

The objective of the shock treatment is to overwhelm and eradicate bacteria and algae by super chlorination. So, immediately after shock treatment your pool has an unusually high level of dead organic matter.

As a result, the water can temporarily appear cloudy or milky. The milky water indicates the presence of dead algae or other contaminants suspended in the water. The spike in chlorine levels can also cause particles to clump together, leading to cloudiness.

While mild cloudiness is generally harmless, persistent or severe cloudiness may signal underlying issues with water chemistry or filtration.

Actually, milky pool water after shock treatment is a confirmation that the shock treatment has been successful. Now your pool circulation and filtration system has to trap the neutralized contaminants and eliminate them from the pool.

Is it Safe to Swim in a Cloudy Pool?

You might be wondering if it’s safe to take a dip in your pool when the water appears milky after shock treatment. The good news is that in most cases, it’s safe to swim. The milky appearance is usually just a temporary reaction to the shock treatment process.

However, it’s essential to exercise caution and take some safety precautions.

Avoid swimming if the water is extremely cloudy and you can’t see the bottom of the pool. More than a health risk this is a serious safety hazard. Swimming in waters with low visibility can result in accidents and even drowning.

If you have sensitive skin or respiratory issues, you may want to wait until the water returns to its usual clarity before swimming to avoid any potential irritation.

Always prioritize safety when it comes to enjoying your pool.

How Long Will the Milkiness Last?

Generally speaking, your pool should clear up within a few hours after the shock treatment.

The duration for the water to return to its normal clarity depends on factors such as the severity of the initial contamination, the effectiveness of the shock treatment, and the efficiency of your pool filtration system.

Environmental factors like temperature and sunlight exposure can also play a role in how quickly the water clears up.

How can I Speed up the Process?

Milky pool water after shock treatment is a common occurrence and typically resolves on its own. Of course, you want your pool to return to its crystal-clear state as soon as possible and dive in.

The pool could be mildly cloudy (which means that you can see the pool bottom) or heavily cloudy (which means that you can not see the pool bottom). The process and the pool chemicals required to clear up the pool will be different.

Process to Clear a Mildly Cloudy Pool

Here is what you can do to speed up the process.

Run the Pool Pump & Filter

Begin by running your pool filtration system continuously to help circulate the water and filter out the suspended particles. Chances are your pool should be clear in 2-3 hours.

If that does not happen then chances are that the suspended particles are too small to get trapped by the pool filter. Its time to use a pool clarifier.

Use a Pool Clarifier

Your pool has a cloudy appearance because of a lot of microscopic solid particles floating around. They are so small that the pool filter is unable to trap them. 

Pool clarifier works by coagulating the microscopic solid particles into larger solid particles that the pool filter can trap.

Best Pool Clarifier

HTH 67023 Super Clarifier helps you maintain a crystal clear pool all summer! It works by combining small contaminants in your pool into larger ones so your filter can trap & take them out. Use this clarifier once a week, 1 ounce per 5,000 gallons of pool water. You can order it from Amazon by clicking the link below:

HTH 67023 Super Clarifier

Does not affect pool’s pH levels; Improves filter efficiency to remove dead algae and organic debris; Fast-acting, concentrated formula.

Continue running the pool filtration system. Keep an eye on the pressure gauge. The contaminants start blocking the sand pores. As the pores get smaller the effectiveness of the filter increases, initially. 

But beyond a point the pores become too small. The filter starts clogging up. It becomes more and more difficult for the pump to push the pool water through the sand media. The reading on the pressure gauge keeps rising. 

It is time to backwash, when the pressure reading reaches 10 psi above normal.

You may or may not need to backwash, but if you need to, do it and continue the filtration. Ultimately you would have cleared the pool!

Process to Clear a Heavily Cloudy Pool

Here is what you can do to speed up the process.

DO NOT Run the Pool Pump & Filter

Please do not run the pool filtration system. Why? The larger suspended particles will clog the filter in no time. Instead you must use a flocculant.

Use a Pool Flocculant

The pool flocculant will coalesce the microscopic solid particles and make them sink to the pool floor. You can then use a pool vacuum to suck up the muck at the pool bottom and discharge it into the yard or a drain.

Best Pool Flocculant

HTH 67080 Pool Care Drop Out Flocculant will help you remove dead algae, non-living organic contaminants, and is safe for all pools and filters. The flocculant is a clear odorless liquid and does not affect pH or sanitizer levels. You can order it from Amazon by clicking the link below:

HTH 67080 Pool Care Drop Out Flocculant

Clears cloudy pool water; Improves filtration; Does not affect pH levels or damage filter equipment.

After vacuuming you can run the pump for a couple of hours. The pool filter will catch those contaminants that the flocculant did not sink to the pool floor and your pool will be sparkling clear once again.

Bottom Line

Milky pool water after shock treatment is quite a common occurrence. I would even say it is a natural outcome and signals the success of the shock treatment. While it may be alarming, to a new pool owner, there is no reason to worry. It is temporary and can be resolved quite easily.

When dealing with mildly cloudy pool water after shock treatment, start by running the pool pump and filter continuously to circulate the water and filter out suspended particles. If the pool remains cloudy, consider using a pool clarifier, which coagulates microscopic particles into larger ones for easier filtration. Keep an eye on the pressure gauge and backwash the filter if needed to maintain effectiveness.

For heavily cloudy pools, avoid running the pump and filter to prevent clogging with larger particles. Instead, use a pool flocculant to make particles sink to the pool floor. Vacuum the sediment, then run the pump briefly to clear any remaining contaminants. With these methods, your pool will soon return to its sparkling, clear state.

Thank you very much for reading the post. I do hope you found it informative and helpful.

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