A swimming pool is one of the most enjoyable luxuries you can have. But it comes with its share of not so fun responsibilities, among which is cleaning the tile at the waterline. The waterline is the area where the water in your pool or spa meets the tile. Even if you prefer to hire a professional pool service to bead-blast your pool clean, you have to learn about tile cleaning as the knowledge might come in handy.

swimming pool

What’s that substance on the waterline?

The dirty substance that discolors the water line in your pool or spa is either stain or scale. If there are hard-water stains and deposits in the tubs and sinks in your home, they probably in the pool too. When water evaporates, calcium deposits stick to the pool sides due to scaling.  The result is hard-to-remove gray or white “scum”.

There are two types of scaling commonly found in pools.

  • Calcium silicate – Of the two, this is the hardest to remove as it has clung on the surface of the pool longer than calcium bicarbonate. If it fails to react with an application of muriatic acid, then it’s probably silicate. A pumice stone is effective in cleaning calcium silicate.
  • Calcium carbonate – You can also clean this effectively using a pumice stone. It’s recognized by its reaction with muriatic acid.

Pool staining can occur in many colors. It happens when there’s a chemical imbalance causing the water to reach with the surfaces. During the construction of your pool, professional pool builders will advise you on the best way to maintain your pool.

Dealing with staining and scaling

Start with small increments, such as every time you’re outside watching the kids as they play in the pool. That’s far better than letting the algae and other substances accumulate. If you prefer using the chemical-free option for cleaning, there are a few DIY options you can attempt that are affordable.

If there’s little grime and dirt, you can use a toothbrush to scrap off the scum. Options for DIY cleaning agent include borax, baking soda, toothpaste, vinegar, and dish soap.

However, there will likely be times when too much dirt has accumulated on the waterline for the gentle natural cleaners to be effective. In this case, you need to get some gloves and a pumice stone. These materials are available at hardware stores or pool supply stores. At this point, you will have to use powerful cleaning agents to remove all the pool scum and algae.

When to hire professional pool cleaning services

There are many cases where pool and spa owners lack the skills and equipment needed to effectively clean their pools’ waterline. If this is the case for you, consider hiring a professional pool maintenance company to clean the pool for you.

It’s not just a matter of convenience. Failure to clean the pool waterline effectively exposes you and your family to potentially dangerous illnesses resulting from an unhygienic pool. Furthermore, dirt and debris may accumulate in the drainage pipes over time and cause problems with circulation of your pool water.