On the surface of their pool, pool owners might notice a few odd-colored stains over time. Dark red and rusty brown stains are two of the most common colors they’ll see, but they might not necessarily mean that there’s a serious problem with your pool. But how can you tell when the rust stains in the pool are a problem?
The Most Common Reason for Pool Staining
Pool staining can be caused by a multitude of factors, but the most frequent rust-colored discolorations originate from these sources.
- Organic Materials
Rust-colored stains can be caused by organic decaying debris like leaves, twigs, pine cones, and acorns sitting on the pool’s surface. In most cases, these materials will leave an impression that is similar to the shape of the product that causes the stain, like the outline of a leaf.
- Metal Items
Everything from bobby pins to toy cars to nails can make your pool rust. As soon as these items are discovered, your swimming pool remodeling is a must. This is especially true if your pool water is very acidic; the more acidic your pool is, the more problems of pool plumbing you’ll have.
- Metal in the Water
It is also known as oxidation of water—maybe your pool’s water contains small metal fragments if you frequently observe rusty spots. Iron in the water of your pool is especially bad, and it can quickly cause expensive repairs like commercial pool renovation.
- Rebar Stains
Rebar is the metal shaft beneath your pool’s plaster. Your pool’s shell will eventually crack if the rebar is not treated. Because of this, additional rebar will be exposed, which will result in additional corrosion until your swimming pool is no longer structurally sound.
Insufficient coverage around the reinforcements is frequently the cause of rebar stains. Rebar is more susceptible to damage when it is not set deep enough in the concrete by pool builders, which is common around curved pool walls, benches, steps, and tight corners.
There should be a minimum of three inches between the earth and the rebar for proper drainage, and tie wire has also been known to cause the rebar to rust. This is because the plaster and shotcrete retain a small hole that allows water to enter after the soft wire breaks down. Last but not least, the pool’s stains could simply be the result of improper rebar installation during pool plumbing.
How to Test Rusty Pool Stains
Before embarking on any project, it is essential to be aware of the situation at hand. Using sandpaper to rub the area is the easiest way to test the stain. If the stain fades away, you can rest assured that there is no serious issue. The stain is likely coming from beneath the surface of your pool if it continues to grow in size, severity, or intensity.
You can use other household items to test for stains differently. Take a vitamin C tablet and hold it against the stain for about 30 seconds if you think it has iron in it. If the stain gets lighter or goes away, iron probably stained your pool. Place a tricolor tablet on the stain for 30 seconds to break down organic matter. If the stain gets lighter, it’s probably caused by decaying organic material.
Pool supply shops also sell pool stain identification kits. Owners of pools can use these kits in swimming pool remodeling to figure out what’s causing the rusty stains in their pool by following a straightforward set of instructions.
How to Deal with Different Rust-Colored Pool Stains?
Depending on what is causing the stains in your pool, different approaches will need to be taken for commercial pool renovation.
- For Organic Material
If the area is small, the stains should be removed by vacuuming the pool after being scrubbed. Adding more free chlorine to your pool by shock is another great way used by pool builders to get rid of rusty brown tannin stains.
- For Metal Objects
After the metal object has been identified and removed, the stain can be removed by brushing the area with a steel brush or using a rust-removing liquid.
- For Small Pieces
To collect the small pieces of metal in the water, some people use magnets. Utilizing a metal removal additive, however, which will remove any excess metals, is the most straightforward solution in commercial pool renovation. Increasing the frequency with which your pool is swept and vacuumed will also aid in minimizing the effects of metal in the water.
- For Stains Caused by Rebar
If you think your pool’s rust-colored stains are caused by rebar, now is the time to act. The structural integrity of your pool has already been compromised by these extremely corrosive stains. When the pool is drained or there is water in it, the rebar can be fixed. The more serious the issue, typically, the more likely it is that the pool builder will choose to complete the work dry.
With a chisel and hammer, your swimming pool remodeling will begin by chipping out the damaged plaster. They will then dig deeper into the gunite with a jackhammer to expose the oxidized rebar.
After that, reputable companies that remodel pools will follow the rust by chipping along the rebar’s vertical and horizontal lengths to see how far the damage has spread. Die grinders, cutoff wheels, bolt cutters, and hacksaw blades are used to remove the affected rebar as well as a few inches of unspoiled steel once they reach clean steel on all ends. This practice safeguards against the formation of rust.
Before the pool is patched, the pool rebar may or may not be replaced, depending on the conversation that the owner has with their pool remodeler. After that, the patch fuses with the concrete. A pool owner might want to think about refinishing the pool plumbing if the patch color doesn’t always match the pool.
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