How to Remove Iron from Pool Water?

The last thing you want is for you to enter your pool for a quick swim only to come out looking like you had a bad tan job! This is only one of many reasons why you need to know how to remove iron from pool water.

To ensure that you eliminate this pesky problem fast and effectively, you need to first confirm that iron is what’s discoloring your water. Once you have, then you should shock the pool and add a pool flocculant. Finally, vacuum your pool and make sure you regulate the pH levels of the water.

And with that, you can say bye-bye to iron problems in this all-important indoor relaxation area!

How to Remove Iron from Pool Water

Before going into the specifics of how you can rid your pool water of this natural element, let’s get a little background on the entire issue first!

Effect of Iron in Pool Water

As the saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!”

Now, even with iron in your pool, you can still swim, right? So, why bother to treat the issue?

Well, even though you can still use your pool with iron in it, it’s often best that you attend to this problem as soon as you notice it.

The first and most important reason for this is that iron can affect your health. Now, whether you like it or not, you ingest the water in your pool. The chances of this are even higher if you’re a very agile and agile swimmer.

Now, while you take the water in minute amounts, it is still possible for you to develop iron overload if you do this for protracted periods.  If this happens, it can cause heart and liver damage. It can even lead to diabetes in some instances.

Another reason you need to see to the cleaning of your pool if it’s contaminated with iron is that it can visibly react with your skin. Constant exposure to iron water like this won’t only discolor your healthy skin cells, but it could also cause wrinkles!

Lastly, iron causes the floor and walls of your pool to turn an ugly color, ruining its beauty. All of these reasons and more make it necessary for you to promptly deal with this issue.

Major Signs of Iron Presence in Swimming Pool Water

Before you can actually clean the iron from your pool, you have to confirm that it’s the element contaminating the water in the first place.

Two major signs you can follow to detect if your pool has been infiltrated by iron bacteria is;

First, if you notice any strange smells in or around the water. In heavy concentrations, iron-stained water can start to smell like sewage or rotten eggs.

Another sign you can look out for is rust stains, slime, and discoloration in certain parts of your pool and plumbing equipment. Since iron erodes most surfaces, this effect never takes long to present itself.

How to Remove Iron From Pool Water

Now, we come to the heart of the matter!

To completely remove iron from your swimming pool water, simply follow this 5-step guide.

Confirm the Presence of Iron

When it comes down to it, several factors can cause your pool walls to get stained or cause skin reactions. So that you know you’re truly dealing with iron, you need to conclusively confirm its presence first.

You can do this by using a test kit. The good thing about this is that the test kit is usually sensitive enough to detect as little as 0.2 parts per million of iron concentration in the water! With this, you’ll be able to know for sure if iron’s the culprit.

Shock the Pool Properly

Once you have established that you are dealing with iron, you need to shock the pool. For this part, it is the concentration of iron in the water that will determine how much shock you’ll need.

After you’re done calculating your mixing ratio, you need to ensure that you wear all the needed personal protective gear like glasses and gloves before you proceed.

Now, make sure that your pool pump is working properly as this is what will help you spread the shock solution. If it is, pour the shock solution into your pool and let your pump stir the water.

You need to wait for six hours (or more) before moving to the next phase.

Introduce Pool Flocculant

Here, you need to get a good flocculent. Before you move forward though, ensure that you’ve read and understood the instructions of the manufacturer.

This is important because some manufacturers make flocculent that needs to be poured straight down the skimmer while others design theirs to be poured around the edges of the pool.

After settling that, pour the right portion of flocculent into the pool. This you can determine based on the exact size of your pool. One ration you can use here is to pour in one-quarter of a gallon of the floc for every 6, 500 gallons of water in your pool.

Next, get your trusty pump again and use this to backwash the pool, further allowing the flocculent to settle in. This substance will directly bind with the iron in the pool, forming a sort of coagulant that’ll then settle at the bottom of the pool.

Vacuum and Backwash Pool

The penultimate step in this process is to manually or automatically vacuum your pool and follow this up with one last backwash.

The purpose of this step is to evacuate the iron sediments now resting at the bottom of your pool.

Regulate pH Levels

All you have to do here is ensure that the pH level of your pool remains firmly within the range of 7.2 to 7.6. This is critical because it ensures that not just iron but most other contaminants don’t stain your lovely pool.

However, unlike most of the other steps on this list, this last process isn’t a strictly one-time affair. Due to how predisposed the pH of a frequently-used pool is to change, you would need to check it (your pool) regularly to ensure it stays within acceptable levels.

Doing this once a week should be all you need.


With this, you know all that there is to know about removing iron from any pool!

Granted, all of it might seem like a bit of work. However, considering just how dangerous exposure to these elements can be, you just have to do it. With this guide, you now have the resources to effectively and proactively deal with these issues. Consequently, you can secure your pleasurable swimming time even better!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.