Here at DiscountPoolSuppliesNow we offer the 3 basic types of swimming pool filter systems used in the industry and many of the top brands. You can choose from Hayward pool filters, Pentair, Sta-rite, Jandy and Intex pump and filter systems.
If you are not sure about which filter to choose, we have included a brief description and the filtration process for each. Naturally, there are Pros and Cons for each type so we discuss these briefly. You will be able to weigh out all the options and determine which filter is right for you.
Do you want one that is easy to operate and low maintenance? Or, do you want one that will filter down to the tiniest micron?
You will also be able to see the cost on each one to make sure you stay whithin your budget. We offer both in-ground and above ground pool filters and various sizes to accommodate all applications.
Pros and Cons of Sand Filters
The pros of sand filters are they are the easiest to operate, maintain and customer friendly. This system uses filter sand to clean dirt, dust and debris from the pools water. You cannot use just any type of sand. The sand particles are larger than regular sand. If it is too small, it will work its way into the laterals and right back into your pool. These swimming pool sand filters can be either a top mount or a side mount. This refers to the multi-port valve’s location that is used to change filter functions.
The typical functions are filter, backwash, rinse, waste, recirculate and closed with a winterize function set in between other functions. Top mount filters are less expensive than the side mount filters.
After the pool is up and running, it is usually backwashed (cleaned) once a week. It is a very simple task to perform. First, you must turn off the pump. Now you can change the function on the multi-port valve without causing any problems. Push down on the handle of the valve and spin it around to backwash. turn the system on and let it run for a short period of time. It really depends on how dirty the filter is. You can watch the site glass or look at the water running out the backwash line.
When the water is starting to clear up the filter is clean. Shut the system off and rotate the valve to rinse and start the system. This is to settle the sand to provide for a good filter base. It also flushes out the lines and multi-port head of any debris. Run for about 20-30 seconds. Turn off the pump and return to filter.
The other functions will perform the specific tasks. Waste will remove water from the pool if there is too much from heavy rains. You can also use this function to vacuum a pool that has a lot of debris and you don’t want to run it all through the filter. This is usually at the start of of the season when the pool has been dormant for months.
Recirculate will just move the water from the pool through the pump to the mutil-port valve and back to the pool. Typically you would not use this function. If the system is running, you will want it to be filtering. Recirculate is more for the service tech’s for one reason or another.
Closed is just that. Nothing will move through the head. You will not use this function unless your equipment is below the pools water. This can be used to keep water from flowing back when cleaning the basket or working on the system. Be sure to move the handle back to filter before starting the pump and filter system.
The cons… the pool filter sand will need to be replaced about every 4-5 years. It is not a hard job to perform if you know what you are doing. You are also tied to weekly backwashing but it’s really not bad because you are usually testing and adding chemicals weekly anyway. The other drawback, it is the least efficient of filtering. Sand filters will only filter down to about 20 microns. It is still enough to filter and provide clear water.
How To Backwash A Sand Filter Video
Pros and Cons of Cartridge Filter Systems
Next in line of filtering capabilities are the cartridge filters. Cartridge filters are just that. The filters can have anywhere from 1 to 4 cartridges, depending on the size and brand of filter.
The advantages over a sand filter, they will filter down to 10 – 15 microns. They have more square feet of filter area so they run will run at a lower pressure. This allows for more turnover of the water and less back pressure on the pump.
Instead of backwashing weekly to clean, the cartridges are removed by opening up the filter tank and removing them for easy cleaning by hosing them off. This is performed a few times throughout the season. More if your pool is opened year round.
The drawback can be the replacement cost of the cartridges. If you have a filter that has 4 cartridges it can be a little costly to replace all of them. You should get a few years from each one but the key to longevity is to keep them clean.
Pros and Cons of D.E. Filters
D.E. filters use what is called D.E. powder and is the best at filtering out the tiniest particals. It can trap dirt and contaminants as small as 2 – 5 microns. Inside the filter are grids. These grids are coated with the D.E powder by introducing the powder through the skimmer line.
The proper amount is poured into the skimmer and goes through the pump to attach itself to the grids. The pool water passes through the powder as it collects the dirt and debris. When it is time to clean the filter, it is backwashed similar to sand filters. Now, the filter will need to recharged with new D.E. powder after each backwashing.
The drawback to D.E. filters is the cost of the filter itself and the cost of the D.E. powder. The cost of the replacement grids after 5 – 10 years can be expensive. You will also need to open the filter tank once or twice a season to really clean the grids. Over time just backwashing alone is not enough to remove the old D.E. powder. Be sure to read all instruction and adhere to their recommendations for handling the D.E. powder.
Most homeowners maintain their own pools and we want to equip you with the knowledge and understanding of how each system works. It doesn’t matter which system you choose, a sand, cartridge or D.E. filter they all need to be maintained and serviced periodically. Let us know if you need any help.