Encountering some tiny red worms in your pool can be quite a scary experience. If it is your first time seeing them, the chances are you will panic and want to call in an expert to help solve the problem.
However, getting rid of red worms in your pool is relatively easy if you know what to do, and you will not even need to use any unique product or tool.
That said, to deal with this nuisance, you need enough information about the red worms starting with what they are and how they get into the pool water.
How Red Worms Get into Your Pool
When you get red worms in your pool, this is a sign that you have poor quality pool water due to improper sanitation and inadequate water circulation. These worms only live in muddy and dirty water.
The worms come from midges, a type of insect that lays its eggs over the surface of stagnant water. The eggs then hatch into the tiny worms in around one week. These warms turn into a dark red shade as they grow and feed on small organic matter in the pool water.
The red worms will stay in this larvae stage for up to 7 weeks before changing to purple pupae and later emerge as adult midges a few days later.
Although they are a nuisance and gross to have in the pool water, red worms do not pose any significant health risk.
How to Remove Red Worms from Your Pool
Despite being harmless, you do not want red worms all over the pool water as they will continue multiplying as they grow to adult midges and lay more eggs. Luckily, they are simple to remove, and here are some easy ways to do it.
1. Shock Your Pool
It is hard for red worms to live in your pool water when you have an adequate amount of sanitizer. Therefore, having them means your sanitizer is not working correctly, so you need to shock the pool.
A massive dose of chlorine will kill most of the red worms almost instantly. If you keep the pump running to circulate the shock in the pool, the water should be red worm-free in a few hours.
2. Vacuum them Off
Another simple but effective way of dealing with this problem is simply sucking out the worms. Here you will need a powerful manual or automatic pool vacuum, and it is vital to make sure you do not miss any spot with the red worms.
3. Use a Skimmer
If you do not have a lot of red worms in the pool water, you can use a skimmer net to scoop them out. The good news is that a skimmer will also be handy for removing other kinds of pool debris, and so it will still be helpful to have around after eliminating the worms.
4. Check and Clean the Filter
The chances are that some of the worms will end up in your filter. Therefore, it is also crucial to check the filters and clean them as you deal with the problem.
Also, making sure your filters are clean and working well ensures that your filtration system can trap most of the red worms, making them even easier to eradicate.
How to Prevent Red Worms in Your Pool
1. Always cover your pool when not in use. A cover prevents any midges in the area from laying their eggs on the surface.
2. Ensure proper pool sanitation by testing the free chlorine levels in the water and keeping them at the optimum level to ensure the water does not create a suitable habitat for red worms.
3. Remember to keep your water circulating by running the pump for at least 8 hours every day. Midges love stagnant water, and so keeping your water moving for long periods deters them.
4. Keep the pool surrounding clean and free of things that can attract insects like midges. Ensure any landscaping or garden you have in the pool surrounding is far enough from the water.
Red worms are harmless, and they are also not known to cause any diseases for swimmers. However, no one wants to swim in water full of these wiggly creatures.
The good news is that they are pretty easy to remove by vacuuming or scooping them out with a skimmer net and shocking the pool to kill them and any eggs yet to hatch.
If you also make sure your water is properly sanitized and circulates well, you may never have to deal with them again in the future.