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How to Remove Copper & Iron From Pool Water

By Keith Allen

Having your own swimming pool provides fun and recreation right in your own backyard, but having a pool also brings maintenance issues. Depending on the condition of the water in your region, certain metals can be detrimental to maintaining a clean pool environment. Minerals such as calcium, magnesium, copper and iron leave deposits that can be difficult to remove. Copper and iron are the most common issues because most pipes and fittings for your pool contain these elements.

Use stain and scale chemicals, a sequestering agent or chelators for well water filled pools, or pools that have metal fittings. This acts to suspend the minerals and bind them at the molecular level.

Add the proper chemicals to safely raise the alkalinity and pH levels and then start the pump. The suspended copper and iron particles will flow into the filter. Check the filter frequently for blue stains from copper or reddish-brown stains from iron. Replace the filter as necessary.

Shock the pool water with lithium hypochlorite or sodium and keep the pump running for constant filtration. Shocking removes excess minerals such as copper and iron through the filtration system.


Things You Will Need

  • Chelator
  • Stain chemicals
  • Lithium hypochlorite
  • Chelated algaecide


  • Use a chelated algaecide instead of a copper based one. The chelated version of algaecide contains the minerals and prevents them from being released into the pool water.

About the Author


Keith Allen, a 1979 graduate of Valley City State College, has worked at a variety of jobs including computer operator, medical clinic manager, radio talk show host and potato sorter. For over five years he has worked as a newspaper reporter and historic researcher. His works have appeared in regional newspapers in North Dakota and in "North Dakota Horizons" and "Cowboys and Indians" magazines.