Pollen Problems: Remove Pollen from Pools

Spring time is a time of renewal and growth, and also a time for love - tree love that is. Tree pollen allows trees to produce seeds, from which they can produce offspring, or baby trees.

So we put up with it - a week or two of yellow dust covering our cars, and allergy sufferers retreating indoors with tissues and a box of Claritin. Let the trees have their fun.

But when pollen starts to make a mess of swimming pools - that's when we step forward, and provide pool owners with good information about removing pollen from pools.


Is Pollen in Your Pool?

It may be a smart deduction that during spring, a yellow layer on the surface, or all-over yellowish color to the pool water, may be pollen. But sometimes, it could be a form of yellow algae.

Pollen can be identified as such:

  1. Pollen tends to stick to the pool tile at the waterline
  2. Pollen will also stick to the inside of your skimmer
  3. Pollen on the surface is easily wind blown into a corner

  • However, pollen will eventually dissolve and pollen will sink to the floor, or can discolor the pool water, making it appear to be yellow algae.
  • Algae will not (usually) float or stick to the tile, but will stick to underwater surfaces, often on the shady side of the pool.
  • And if on the floor, algae will not 'dust-up' when hit with a brush, like pollen will, but requires firm brushing to remove.

What's Wrong With Pollen? 

Besides the allergy issues, pollen in the pool can upset your pool water chemistry and clog up filtration systems.

  • Accumulates inside of skimmer walls and along tile line
  • Oily pollen particles clog tiny pores in pool filter media
  • Can mix with dirt to form ugly water line scum and stains
  • Pollen contains phosphates, bacteria and other organics

Removing Pollen from Your Pool

Eventually the pollen will filter out on its own, but if you want to speed the process along, there are ways to remove pollen from a pool very quickly.

7-ways to Remove Pollen from Pools

  1. Natural Chemistry First Aid; a blend of clarifiers and enzymes
  2. The Slime Bag; heavy fabric filter bag attaches to pool wall return
  3. The Skim Bag; heavy fabric filter bag drops into skimmer basket
  4. Filter Savers; fine mesh socks stretch over skimmer or pump baskets
  5. Jack's Magic Fiber Filter Stuff as a filter aid to improve performance

  • pollen grain closeupAnother way to combat pool pollen is to shock the pool with a granular oxidizer, either with a basic Pool Shock, or you can also use our Non-chlorine Shock.
  • Running your pool pump a little overtime during pollen season, and keeping your pool and pool filter a little extra clean, also helps to remove the pollen from a pool faster.


To summarize, remove most of the pollen regularly with a fine mesh net or skimmer sock, and keep your tiles and skimmer inside walls clean, while running the filter a little overtime. If you need or want more rapid removal of pollen from the pool, use a Clarifier, Enzyme or Filter Aid to assist in cleaning the water faster. Shocking the pool can also remove large amounts of pollen from the pool, although it can result in cloudy water in some situations.

Thanks for reading this short post about pollen problems in pools - the good news is that it's usually temporary! In a few weeks, the pollen will be gone.


In The Swim makes every effort to provide accurate recommendations based upon current ANSI/APSP/ICC-5 2011 (R2022) standards, but codes and regulations change, and In The Swim assumes no liability for any omissions or errors in this article or the outcome of any project. You must always exercise reasonable caution, carefully read the label on all products, follow all product directions, follow any current codes and regulations that may apply, and consult with a licensed professional if in doubt about any procedures. In The Swim assumes no legal responsibility for your reliance or interpretation of the data contained herein, and makes no representations or warranties of any kind concerning the quality, safety, or suitability of the information, whether express or implied, including, without limitation, any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.