Pool Troubleshooting

How to Get Rid of Worms in a Swimming Pool

How To Treat Tiny Worms In Your Pool

By Allen Hayward

No one wants to dive into their swimming pool and end up with a bunch of dead worms stuck to their face… yuck. It won’t be easy to prevent worms from getting into your pool water, but it can be done. It just requires some work on your behalf to make it happen.

There are no guarantees that worms will never find their way into your pool, even after you take the necessary precautions. But you can at least reduce the number of worms that find their way into the water. More importantly, you can prevent an infestation of worms if you keep taking the right preventive actions.

Plants Need Worms

Worms may look slimy and scary, but they’re not harmful to people. In fact, the landscaping of your property depends on worms in order to keep the soil fertilized so that plants can continue to grow and prosper. If you simply kill all the worms on your property, then you’ll need to do more landscaping work to make up for the weak fertilization.

Are Worms Ever Bad?

Worms are not really a common problem for pools. That is why you typically find worms in the ground instead of underwater. Worms love to inhabit the soil and stay discrete from the lifeforms on the surface. But when the cooler seasons of autumn and spring come around, worms will come up to the surface because they love cooler temperatures.

They also love moisture, which is why you always seem worms come out after a heavy rainstorm. If you have cooler temperatures and moisture together in the same environment, then worms will want to hang out on the surface for sure. This is something to consider if these conditions exist around your pool area, especially if there is a lot of soil and landscaping there. Worms will just come up from the soil and make their way right over to the nearby pool water.

Stop the Worms

Your soil needs worms, but your pool doesn’t. So, you’ll need to make a compromise by preventing worms from accessing your pool water. Then you won’t need to spend so much time clearing worms out of your water or removing them from your skimmer.

Here are some helpful strategies for at least reducing the number of worms that get into your pool. These strategies may even eliminate the worm problem entirely if you’re lucky.

Pool Cover

No one likes having to go through the trouble of putting a cover on a pool or removing a cover from a pool. But it is worth the effort if you have an infestation of worms around the pool area. Those sneaky little worms won’t be able to get past the pool cover if it’s on securely. Then you won’t have worms in the pool water or filter.

To save yourself the inconvenience of taking the cover on and off, choose a cover which is designed for fast use. Plus, you don’t always have to put on the cover when you’re not using the pool. You can wait until the temperatures get colder or right before heavy rain approaches.

Post-Storm Pool Inspection

You might be too busy to inspect your pool area after every storm. But if you can do so, step onto your pool deck and see if it needs a cleaning. Do this as soon as the heavy rains stop because this is when the worms will come out the most. If you can stop them before they get into your pool water, then you’ll keep the water safe.

Landscape Relocation

Beautiful landscaping surrounding the perimeter of your pool might look nice, but not when it comes to worms. If you have soil, plants, and water in close proximity to each other, then you’re creating a worm haven.

If it is within your power, move the plants, flowers, and other landscaping to at least 20 feet away from the pool area. Put a lot of concrete or pavement down around the pool area too. This will create two obstacles for the worms. Not only will they have to travel a greater distance, but they’ll likely get fried on the solid surface underneath the baking sunlight.

Raise the Pool Deck

Your concrete deck should not be at an even level with your landscaping soil. If they are even, then you should modify the design by raising the pool deck a little higher off the ground. This might only be a few inches, but at least it’ll make it more difficult for the worms to travel over it.

This is not a foolproof strategy, but it’ll reduce the chances of worms making their way to your pool water.

Placing Crushed Limestone

Your pool is surrounded by concrete. Place some small crushed limestone pieces on the concrete and the area where it meets the soil. Crushed limestone increases the pH levels of oil, which worms dislike. It’ll make the worms travel in the opposite direction once they come up from the ground.

The only problem here is that heavy rain or wind could forcibly move the crushed limestone pieces into your pool water. This will create an unbalance in the water chemistry of your pool water and hurt your filter too. For this reason, get in the habit of testing your pool water if using this method.


Insecticides should be your last resort. Please try every other worm removal method before using this one. Insecticides are only better to use if the worms are just completely out of control.

You will spray the insecticide formula onto your landscaped areas near the pool. The existing insects will die while others won’t want to go near them. Worms and other ground insects will die too. This is actually a bad thing for the environment, so don’t do this all the time.

Worms cannot hurt you in the pool. But they’re gross to keep in the water if people are going to be swimming in it. So, you should make it your mission to reduce the number of worms in your pool water or possibly get rid of them all by following the methods outlined above. You may succeed, or you may not. However, trying is better than not trying. Right?



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