What Is a Good Product to Take the Milky Color out of an 18-Foot Pool?

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What Is a Good Product to Take the Milky Color out of an 18-Foot Pool?
Milky coloured swimming pool water can be made crystal clear again through the use of a number of remedies. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

A vital necessity for any swimming pool owner has to be the clarity of her pool's water. Swimming pools are supposed to feature crystal clear water, so milky coloured water is a definite turn-off. A variety of reasons account for why a swimming pool's water will look cloudy or milky. Causes of milky coloured pool water include fine particulate matter floating suspended in the water. The specific fix for milky coloured swimming pool water depends on its cause, though.

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Four causes are responsible for milky coloured swimming pool water. A common cause of milky water in a pool is high pH or high total alkalinity. As a pool's pH or total alkalinity levels climb, a precipitation of dissolved salts forms in the water, turning it milky white. Other causes of milky coloured water in swimming pools include poor filtration, bather pollution and high levels of chlorine stabiliser.


Two remedies can be used for milky water in your swimming pool if your pool's pH or total alkalinity (or both) levels are high. To lower a swimming pool's pH and total alkalinity levels, you need to add muriatic acid (MA) according to direction. About 340gr. of MA is required per 10,000 gallons of water to lower pool pH. Lowering a pool's total alkalinity takes about 1 qt. of MA per 10,000 gallons of water.

Bather Pollution

If your pool's water is milky coloured but pH and total alkalinity levels are within recommended ranges, you must try other remedies. For example, if you have milky pool water and you suspect bather pollution, backwash (reverse) your pool's filter, and superchlorinate your pool. Afterwards, add a clarifier to the water. Pool water clarifiers cause bather pollutants to clump together for easier pool filtration.

Other Remedies

Blocked or ineffective pool filters and high chlorine stabiliser levels causing milky swimming pool water require different remedies. If your swimming pool's filter is blocked or ineffective, its filtering medium usually needs cleaning or replacement. Chlorine stabiliser's formal name is cyanuric acid (CYA), and it protects pool chlorine from the sun. However, high CYA levels in pools interfere with chlorine, leading to milky water. Partially drain and refill your pool; superchlorinate it to lower CYA levels.


Maintaining your swimming pool's water chemistry is vital to the prevention of milky coloured water. Pool pH levels should be at 7.4 to 7.6 while total alkalinity needs to be between 80 and 100 parts per million (ppm). Additionally, maintain swimming pool chlorine levels at 2 ppm. Pool water clarifiers are also known as pool conditioners. Add a pool clarifier whenever you suspect particulate matter or bather pollution is causing milky pool water.

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