Solved! How do I fix my clear brown pool water?

How do I fix my brown pool water? If you are on this page chances are you have an unsightly brown pool that you want to fix ASAP. Well, you are in the right place. We have an all-in-one solution for you, complete with easy-to-use, step-by-step directions directly from Dr. Joe! This is the DIY way to get rid of your brown swimming pool water!

If you CAN see the main drain in your swimming pool, you are on the right page.  Follow the directions below.  

If you CANNOT see the main drain then click here for help with Cloudy Brown Pool water.

Clear Brown Pool Water
Clear Brown Pool Water
Brown Pool Water in Hot Tub

What is the cause of clear brown pool water?

There are generally two causes of brown pool water; organics (leaves, tannins, algae, debris and dirt) and inorganic metals (like rust, iron, copper and manganese).  This DIY method treats both organics and inorganic metals.

Use our step-by-step guide for fixing clear brown pool water below.

Items needed to fix your clear brown pool water:

Metal Stain Eliminator Kit Includes:

Mega Maintain Metal, Stain & Scale Control is a sequestering/chelating agent that holds stain-causing metals, like iron, copper, and manganese in suspension.

Rust and Iron Stain Remover reduces the suspended oxidized iron (rust) into its clear ionic form.

Copper Stain Remover reduces the suspended oxidized copper into its clear ionic form.

CuLator Ultra 4.0 removes and eliminates dissolved iron and other stain-causing metals from the swimming pool.

Purchase our Metal Stain Eliminator Kit and use the step-by-step instructions below to solve your brown pool water problems!

Follow these directions step-by-step

Print off the Step-By-Step Guide Here.

Prior to starting this procedure, read all directions.  The pool or spa water should be properly balanced, and the free chlorine level should be below 0.5 ppm. IMPORTANT: The pool should not be used until the procedure is completed and the pH is 7.2-7.8 and the free chlorine level is between 1.0 ppm and 4.0 ppm.

Quick Balanced Pool Water Guide: Free Chlorine: 1-4 ppm, Total Chlorine 1-4 ppm, Combined Chlorine 0, pH: 7.2-7.8, Calcium Hardness: 200-400 ppm, Alkalinity: 80-120 ppm, Cyanuric Acid (CYA) 30-50, Iron: 0 ppm, and Copper: 0 ppm. 

Step 1.

After balancing the pool water, wait for the chlorine level to go below 0.5 ppm. This may take a few days.

Step 2.

Mega Maintain Metal, Stain & Scale Control: Walking around the edge of the swimming pool add 1 quart of Mega Maintain, Metal, Stain & Scale Control.

Step 3 .

Walking around the edge of the swimming pool add 1 bag of Rust and Iron Stain Remover and 1 bag of Copper Stain Remover. These two combined will both reduce the chlorine level to 0 ppm and help to remove the brown or other color of the swimming pool water.

Step 4.

CuLator Ultra 4.0: Place the CuLator Ultra 4.0 into your pump basket. Run the circulation pump for 2 hours.

Step 5.

Balance the pool water: If the water is clear and colorless, start to slowly add chlorine (1/8 of a lb. of powdered chlorine or 1/4 gal. of liquid chlorine per hour, per 20,000 gal.) until the level reaches 1-4 ppm.  The pool water may go cloudy*, which is normal, and may last a few days to several days. It may take a large amount of chlorine before the chlorine holds. Finish balancing the pool water and maintain a chlorine level between 1-4 ppm.

Important: After 12 hours, even if the water still has color, you MUST start to add chlorine until it holds at 1-4 ppm to avoid an algae bloom. Slowly add chlorine (liquid chlorine is preferred) to the pool. If you are using “pool shock” to add chlorine to the water, add no more than 1/8 of a 1 lb. per hour. If you over-chlorinate the pool, you risk staining your pool surface.  Follow all steps for best results.

Keep the chlorine level between 1-2 ppm for 3-4 weeks. DO NOT OVER-CHLORINATE WITH LIQUID OR POWDERED CHLORINE OR SHOCK DURING THIS TIME. (If you allow the chlorine level to exceed 4 ppm the brown water may return and surface staining may appear). Keep the filtration system running for a minimum of 12 hours per day until the water is clear. 

*Note: The pool water may temporarily turn cloudy due to the chlorine removing excess Rust and Iron Stain Remover. Once the excess Rust and Iron Stain Remover is gone, the cloudiness will disappear, and you will be able to measure chlorine in the pool water.  This may take several days. 

Purchase The Metal Stain Eliminator Kit!

The solution for clear brown pool water!

Clear Brown Pool Water Before Treatment
Before Treatment
Clear Brown Pool Water After Treatment
After Treatment

A used CuLator with iron removed from pool water!

Used CuLator with Iron Trapped Inside
Used CuLator 1.0 with Iron Removed from Pool
Used CuLator Ultra 4.0 with iron removed from pool water trapped inside.
Used CuLator Ultra 4.0 with Iron Removed from Pool Water
Periodic Products' Metal Stain Eliminator Kit for Pools and Spas

Does Your Pool Have Surface Stains?

Remove pool stains with a Metal Stain Eliminator Kit!

How can I prevent brown pool water in the future?

It’s easy to prevent brown water in the future. Simply keep your water balanced and chlorinated and use our Trifecta System. 

  1. Pre-Filter source water with FillFast.
  2. Sequester any addition metals with Super Start-Up or Mega Maintain.
  3. Place a CuLator Ultra 4.0 in your pump basket.