Diagnosing Water Quality Issues

How to Diagnose a Water Quality Issue

clear water diagnosis

The goal is clear water, right? I mean you don't add a pond to your backyard to see your fish only when they come to the surface. You want crystal clear water all the time! So if you're having water clarity issues let's figure out what's happening.

If your water isn't clear, it can be one of two issues:

  • Living, single-celled algae. Caused by too many nutrients in your pond and too little filtration/plants/beneficial bacteria.
  • Suspended debris. This can be dead algae that was growing on the rocks, liner, dead plant growth, or run-off or dirt washing in.
These two conditions can look very similar to the untrained eye, so the best way to determine what sort of clarity issue you have, get a glass and fill it with pond water. 

green pond water
This lovely green water is caused by single-celled algae.

murky cloudy pond water with debris
Yuck! That's a lot of suspended debris in this water.

Each of these issues must be treated differently to be corrected. There's no one product that's going to take care of both conditions.  So, diagnosis is the key so you can begin to correct the problem. 

Again, treatment for each problem is entirely different, but once it's diagnosed, you have something to work with.

For green water, you want to follow these steps.

For suspended debris, you should try this.

Good luck with your diagnosis!

Thanks for readying,
Staci Wicker
Cool Ponds Co-Owner


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