In swimming pools, water is continuously flowing through the filter, re-circulating through the plumbing lines that dump into the pool. These pipes are in contact with a lot of insects, like mosquitoes and gnats. They fly inside the pipe and sometimes end up in the pool surviving at the expense of you and your friends having fun.
A swimming pool is a fun luxury to have but it comes with a huge price of maintenance. Aside from regularly cleaning the pool so it doesn’t develop algae and accumulate filth, some of the biggest problems that homeowners frequently encounter by having a swimming pool are Waterbugs.
While the American Cockroach is nicknamed the “waterbug”, the ones we will talk about in this guide are Waterbugs that frequently infest pools such as the Water Boatman and the Backswimmer.
Under the right conditions, these water-loving pests can create a sizable invasion that will make you not want to swim for a while.
If you have been encountering Waterbugs in your pool, this guide can help. Read on to find out more about Waterbugs and how you can treat this class of pest and prevent them from taking over your pool.
There are two main types of Waterbugs that you can get in your pool: Water Boatmen and Backswimmers. They look a lot alike because they are both from the Hemiptera classification of insects.
- Water boatmen are oval-shaped bugs that are half an inch long and are usually brown or brownish with a tinge of green.
- They have four legs with their back legs being much longer than their front legs. The back legs have fringed hairs that make it easy for them to float and paddle around on the water’s surface.
- Water boatmen also have wings which they use to fly around. They don’t bite and like to eat mosquitoes and algae.
- Backswimmers have a similar body type to Water boatmen but are lighter in color, have longer legs, and swim upside down on their backs.
- Unlike Water Boatman, the Backswimmer will bite if you get too close. The pain level is on par with a mosquito bite or bee sting.
- Backswimmers often are a by-product of having Water Boatman because they are predators of Water Boatman bugs.
Use the images and description above to help you properly identify the specific Waterbug problem you are dealing with. If you are not totally sure, contact us and we will assist you with proper identification.
The inspection process should be quite easy as waterbugs will almost exclusively be present because of the attraction to your pool. In this phase, you should observe where they are concentrated and how severe of a problem you have.
Where To Inspect
Walk around and closely examine your pool. Likely there are algae present even if your pool isn’t visibly green yet as Waterbugs like the Water Boatman wouldn’t be around if there were no algae. It is their main source of food and they like to lay eggs on algae.
What To Look For
You’re looking for Waterbugs themselves. They should be quite easy to find as they will be floating on the surface of the pool.
Getting rid of Waterbugs is quite a simple process because you mainly have to eliminate the algae that are accumulating in your pool. When algae are not around, waterbugs will just fly away. Use an algaecide meant for pools and then keep up with regular cleaning of your pool. For an extra measure to keep waterbugs from seeking your pool, apply Supreme IT Insecticide around your yard, being careful not to apply the product directly to the pool.
Remember that you must read all the product labels and follow the application instructions on these labels, and stay safe by wearing personal protective equipment (PPE).
Step 1 – Skim and Vacuum Visible Bugs Out Of Your Pool
Using a pool skimmer, remove visible bugs from the pool. Be careful when doing this though as both Water Boatmans and Backswimmers may start to fly out to escape as soon as they have been scooped out of the pool.
After the waterbugs have been removed, manually use a vacuum to remove sediment and debris from the pool and possibly any eggs the waterbugs have laid.
Step 2 – Use an Algaecide
As you would weekly to clean the pool, apply calcium hypochlorite to kill any algae left in the pool that would attract waterbugs. Use the manufacturer label of the pool chemical for specifics on how much you will need to apply to your pool. You may need to up the dosage more than normal if you were seeing a lot of waterbugs or if your water has turned visibly green.
24 hours after shocking your pool with chlorine, use a pool test kit to make sure your pool has the proper balance of chlorine and alkaline to make it safe for swimming.
Step 3 – Spray Supreme IT
Supreme IT is a broad-spectrum insecticide that is labeled for treating over 70 different pests including Waterbugs. It also has a long residual effect that continues to kill for up to 90 days after application. Waterbugs that may be hovering around your pool won’t anymore after applying this pesticide in your yard.
To apply Supreme IT, simply mix water in a hand pump or hose-end sprayer then add Supreme IT at a rate of 1 oz per gallon to cover 1,000 sq. ft. Measure the square footage of your lawn to determine how much Supreme IT you need to cover the entire area. Shake well and pump your sprayer.
Focus your Supreme IT treatment on the landscaping and rocks, making sure to keep applications at least 5 feet away from the pool perimeter. This is to ensure that the chemical doesn’t get into the filters, drains, or skimmers. Use a fan spray setting to get nice uniform coverage.
After the Waterbugs have been removed from your yard, you will need to make the pest stays away and doesn’t return. Here are some preventative measures you can apply to protect your pool:
Maintain the proper chemistry levels for your pool so algae doesn’t develop. Use chlorination at least twice a week especially if the pool is used more frequently. A shock treatment includes adding larger volumes of chlorine to the pool and stirring it to dissolve completely. This potentially is more effective than just adding small amounts and letting it dissolve naturally. The best time to add chlorine to the pool is in the evening and leave it to dissolve overnight.
Skim your pool every day. Use your skimmer to remove dead bugs and algae spores that may have come into your pool so they don’t bloom.
Cover your pool when it is not in use. This will keep everything out and not allow algae or the bugs that love them to sneak into your pool.
Turn off Poolside Lighting. Most Waterbugs and bugs, in general, are attracted to lighting. Lights should not be directed at the pool directly to avoid attracting more bugs. Also, you can get ultraviolet bug zappers to attract and kill bugs without making a big mess.
Mow your yard short. Keep vegetation around the pool to a minimum, as these provide potential breeding spots for bugs to lay their eggs. Trim the leaves and grass around the pool.
Insecticide For Swimming Pools
Swimming pools are a great way to cool off during the summer months, but they can also be a haven for insects. If you have bugs in your pool and don’t know how to get rid of them, you’re not alone: the most common types of pests that invade swimming pools are mosquitoes and other blood-sucking bugs like ticks, chiggers, and fleas.
The best way to eliminate these pests is with an insecticide for swimming pools. This kind of product contains chemicals that kill insects on contact and keep them from returning. The most effective insecticides for swimming pools usually contain some form of permethrin, a synthetic pyrethroid pesticide that kills mosquitoes within seconds of coming into contact with it.
List Of Insecticide For Swimming Pools
A swimming pool is not a place for insects to thrive in. However, these pesky critters are often attracted to the water in your swimming pool. If left unchecked, they can cause damage to your pool equipment and increase the risk of contracting an illness.
Insecticides are chemicals that kill bugs such as mosquitoes and gnats. They can be applied directly to the water in your pool or sprayed on the walls of your home. The best insecticides for swimming pools include:
Pool RX 331066 Black Unit Swimming Pool Algaecide, Single
- New formula with 3 active Ingredients
- Eliminates all types of Pool Algae
- Reduces chemical demand
- Effective for up to 6 Months
- NSF/ANSI 50 Certified
- Ideal for Chlorine, Salt, UV, or Ozone Pools
Additional Info :
HTH 52026 Super Shock Treatment Swimming Pool Chlorine Cleaner, 1 lb (Pack of 12)
- BENEFITS: Increases the chlorine level in swimming pools to kill bacteria and algae to keep your pool water clear and ready for fun all season long
- USE: Apply directly to pool water as needed; Test pool water and shock weekly to keep free available chlorine levels between 1 and 4ppm
- COMPATIBILITY: Effective for all swimming pool types including pools with liners and Gunite pools, and saltwater pool systems
- FEATURES: Increases chlorine levels; Kills and prevents bacteria and algae; Keeps water clear; See results in 24 hours; 1 bag treats 13, 500 gallons; Won’t fade vinyl pool liners
- INCLUDES: Twelve 1-lb bags of shock treatment for your swimming pool
Additional Info :
Mighty Mint – 16oz Insect and Pest Control Peppermint Oil – Natural Spray for Spiders, Ants, and More – Non Toxic
- Extra Concentrated for Long-Lasting Protection
- Natural Ingredients Proven Effective in the Real World
- Large 16oz Bottle
- Powerful Essential Oil
Additional Info :
Ortho Home Defense Insect Killer for Indoor & Perimeter2: With Comfort Wand, Kills Ants, Cockroaches, Spiders, Fleas & Ticks, Odor Free, 1.1 gals.
Price: $14.49 ($0.10 / Fl Oz)
- Ortho Home Defense Insect Killer for Indoor & Perimeter2 with Comfort Wand kills ants, cockroaches, spiders, fleas, ticks, and other listed bugs; the formula is odor free, won’t stain, and keeps listed bugs out
- KILLS BUGS INSIDE: Kills those annoying home-invading insects, including ants, cockroaches, spiders, fleas, ticks, scorpions, beetles, silverfish, centipedes, and millipedes
- KEEPS BUGS OUTSIDE: Creates a bug barrier that will kill bugs you have and prevents new bugs for up to 12 months (applies to ants, roaches, and spiders indoors on non-porous surfaces)
- NO STAINING OR STINK: This spray can be used indoors and out, leaves no residue, and has no odor; people and pets may re-enter treated areas after the spray has dried
- WAND MAKES APPLICATION EASY: The Comfort Wand eliminates hand fatigue, and there’s no pumping required, making it easy to spray along your home’s perimeter–indoors and outside
Additional Info :
Pools are a great place to cool off on hot summer days, but they can also be filled with bugs. Insects can get into your pool and breed, which can lead to dangerous consequences for swimmers.
Fortunately, there are several types of insecticides that you can use in your swimming pool to keep bugs away. Some of these products are designed specifically for swimming pools, while others are designed for other uses but can also be used in your pool.
These products kill insects by either suffocation or ingestion. They work by killing the insects before they have a chance to breed or lay eggs. The best way to protect your pool is by using one of these insecticides every few weeks during peak bug season (the time when bugs usually start coming out).