Cloudy, Green, Foamy: What the Water in Your Pool is Telling You & How to Fix It

Green, Foamy, dirty swimming pool water

Cloudy, Green, Foamy: What the Water in Your Pool is Telling You & How to Fix It

Foam and bubbles in your pool are normal, especially when your jets are running. The issue is when your water turns green or those bubbles reach the surface and, instead of popping, they group together and form a foam layer. At that point, you need to figure out what the water in your pool is telling you and how to fix it. 

If you’re noticing foam building up on the surface of your pool or the water is getting cloudy, read on to see why this is happening and how to keep it from returning in the future.

Why Is My Pool Water Foamy and Green?

At Opulent Pools, we have seen our fair share of foamy green pool water. There are several reasons why foam could be building up on the surface of your pool. Here are two of the most common reasons.

Personal Care Products

The most common reason that foam starts to build up and your pool water gets cloudy is because of personal care products washing off of your skin and hair. Below are the top products that cause foam buildup:

  • Hair Gel
  • Hairspray
  • Deodorant
  • Lotion
  • Makeup
  • Perfume and Cologne
  • Shampoo
  • Laundry Detergent


It’s recommended that you bathe before jumping into your pool so that you can wash off all of these different products. Doing so will keep your water cleaner and lower the risk of developing foam buildup.

High Bather Load

Anytime you have guests over for a swim you all shower before jumping in, right? Probably not. Since everyone uses some kind of personal care products, when there are big numbers of people in your pool, all of those different products get into your water.

On top of that, skin oils, sweat, (and urine) also build up with lots of pool guests. This is a good recipe for foam buildup, especially if you don’t test and treat your water soon after your party leaves. Untreated water after a high bather load often results in foam and cloudy water.

How To Clean Your Pool Water

It is best to start cleaning your water before it turns green and the foam buildup gets too out of control. The earlier the better. 

To clear the foam, start by balancing your pool water levels. First, make sure to test your water using a test kit or a test strip. This will give you a good starting place. 

When balancing your pool water levels, use the following guide to help you.

Alkalinity – 100-150 PPM

pH Levels – 7.4-7.6

Calcium Hardness

  • Vinyl & Fiberglass Pools – 175-225 PPM
  • Concrete & Plaster – 200-275 PPM

On top of that, make sure your sanitizer levels are balanced. Whether you are using chlorine or salt, make sure it is dispersed evenly throughout the whole pool. You should see your water start to clear up.

If balancing your pool water levels doesn’t do the trick, then you’ll need to shock your pool. 

Get Help From the Professionals

If you are feeling overwhelmed with caring for your pool, then take a deep breath because we have a solution. 

Opulent Pools is Georgia’s top pool treatment and cleaning company. That means that, no matter the pool water challenge you are facing, you have someone to back you up. Simply give us a call today at (404) 462-0777, and schedule a time when we can come out to help you get your pool water back on track.