Plumbing, Heating and Pool Repair Guides

How To Clean Above Ground Pool Steps


If you own a set of above ground swimming pool steps and they need to be cleaned because they are covered with green algae or possibly even dirt, then you will need to grab the garden hose and get ready for about an hours worth of work, but at the end you will have some clean pool steps.

Removing The Drop-in Steps From The Pool

Green Above Ground Pool Steps
Depending on what brand of drop in steps you have in your pool will determine how you remove the steps but most steps can be removed in a similar way. The first thing you will want to do is to disconnect the handrail from the pool decking. Once the handrail is removed, you then will need to check to see if you have sand bags holding down the pool steps. If you do have sand bags under the drop in steps to hold them into place, you will have to get into the pool or ask someone to go into your pool and slide the sandbags out from under the steps. If the pool water is green you may want to wait till it clears up before entering the pool to remove the sandbags.

Washing & Cleaning The Algae Off The Pool Steps

Clean Above Ground Pool Steps
Once you have removed the steps from the pool you will need some water and some type of cleaning product. Before you use any cleaning products on the pool steps you will first want to wash all of the excess algae off with a garden hose with a sprayer nozzle. Most of the time 90% of the algae will be able to be washed off with just water. Although there is going to be spots of algae that will not wash off so easily so you will need to use a mild cleaner. Softscrub works well to wash stubborn algae stains from the pool steps. Make sure you use a rag and make sure to remove all of the algae from the pool steps so when its time to drop the steps back into the pool you can rest assured that all of the green algae has been washed off completely.

Re-installing The Steps Into The Pool

Once you have fully cleaned all the green algae from the pool steps with water and some cleaner you will want to make sure that you washed all of the spots. Do a once over and make sure you got the bottom of the steps and all the little tough spots. Making sure you got all of the spots will help the pool stay blue. There is nothing like adding green algae back into the pool.

You now can reinstall the above ground drop in steps the same way you removed them. If the pool steps were out of the pool when you started cleaning them, you will need to most likely weight them down with sand bags and then tighten the railing bolts to the deck surface so the steps do not move when in use.


  1. I have these steps and they are a piece of crap! any step treads with holes in them to let water in them for weight causes algae in them and causes algae in the pool. a poor design! It’s impossible to get the algae out. the steps we had before were good but are not made anymore.I want pool steps with no holes in them.these steps shown with algae all over them are the ones we have and cause a algae problem in the says to put sand in them to weight them down but to heavy to get out of pool. treads with holes are big problems!!!have any suggestions for nice steps for a 52 in. above ground with no holes in step treads.

    • Byron,I have these same steps and they stink. Every year I have such an algae problem around them.I’m getting ready to open my pool and will be putting them back in as I can’t afford new steps this year. I’m thinking that I may take some algaecide and put it in the bigger holes and plug them with rubber stoppers after the stairs fill with water. I’m at my wits end trying to keep them clean and am ready to try anything at this point. If any body else has any more ideas,please help.

      • I have very similar steps, it is nice to have the gradual entrance into the pool and as far as I have searched, I have not found another design that provides for the removability without the compromise of uncirculated water in the tubing of the steps.. here’s what I done for the last 4-5y.
        1. i scrubbed the heck out of the parts outside
        2. I drilled bigger holes to clean the inside with soap and algaecide, using a little hose nozzle to get inside
        3. I keep them outside the pool, hanging in my garage for fall and winter, fully drained which means turning them all sorts of directions to empty the water out
        4. when it’s time to put them back in the pool I take a few tablespoons of granular bleach and drop it in the holes as the stairs are filling water. Having the bleach inside the railings and steps reduces the amount of algae that builds up in them..but
        5. I also get water bugs occasionally and if I’m worried they’re in the steps, I take a funnel and dish soap and add it into the holes and it seems to do the trick.

        I end up with a little smell of soap and chlorine for a day or so right by the steps but it is worth not having to wrestle with algae.

        I have a salt water pool too which helps a great deal!

  2. Hello just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let
    you know a few of the pictures aren’t loading correctly.
    I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two
    different internet browsers and both show the same outcome.

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