Jumping into the pool on a hot summer day is the most revitalizing thing you can do. The water is clear and cool. Now picture yourself diving into a dirty, debris-filled pool with cloudy water. Not quite the same, is the experience? Fortunately, thanks to pool filters, the former, idyllic pool is the norm! Pool filters are essential to keeping a swimming pool filtration because they remove dirt and debris. You can read more about pool filters, their various types, and how to choose the right one for your swimming pool below.
A pool filter is what?
A pool filter is a part of a pool’s filtration system that clears water of dirt and other debris. Water is drawn into the filter by a pump, cleaned in the filter of any debris, and then returned to the pool by return jets on the pool walls. Pool filters not only maintain crystal-clear water but also boost chlorine’s capacity to kill bacteria, creating a safe swimming environment.
Pool filter types
Diatomaceous earth, cartridge filters, and sand filters are the three main types of pool filters.
Sand filters Sand filters work by trapping impurities as water percolates through a tank of sand. While sand appears smooth to the unaided eye, a microscope shows that each grain has sharp, uneven edges that cling to contaminants. While clean water drains to the tank’s bottom and returns to the pool, dirt and debris are kept in the sand.
20 to 40 micron-sized contaminants are captured by sand filters. One millionth of a metre is a micron. A human hair strand is approximately 70 microns wide, so that gives you an idea of how tiny they are! Although debris between 20 and 40 microns in size is small, DE and cartridge filters can capture even smaller particles, making sand filters the least effective pool filter by comparison.
The filter becomes less efficient as time goes on due to the accumulation of particles trapped in the sand. The accumulation increases tank pressure and obstructs proper water flow. A pressure gauge on the filter’s side notifies you of pressure changes and lets you know when maintenance needs to be done. Sand filters have the benefit of easy maintenance. Simply backwash the filter, which entails turning the water on its side to flush out debris, will do the trick. You should replace the sand only when more frequent backwashing is required, which happens once every 5-7 years. Remember that backwashing your filter frequently can mess with the chemistry and water balance of your pool. You might need to refill your pool and rebalance the chemicals.
Benefits of sand filters:
- Simple to maintain
- Easy to understand operation
- Available for all sizes of pools
Drawbacks to sand filters:
- Lowest performing filtration
- Backwashing might be a water waster.
- Backwashing may change the chemical balance of the pool.
- Filters in cartridges
Pleated cartridges make up cartridge filters, which catch debris as swimming pool water passes through a tank. The filtration system returns clean, filtered water to the pool while the pleats capture impurities as small as 10 microns. The majority of cartridge filters have a higher filter efficiency than sand filters, trapping particles in the 10-15 micron range. They require a different, yet straightforward maintenance procedure, and they are more expensive than sand filters.
Similar to sand filters, dirty cartridges will cause the tank’s pressure to rise. It’s time for maintenance when the tank’s pressure gauge shows a high reading. Take the cartridge filter out of the tank and use a hose to spray dirt and debris off of it to clean it. You might need to gently brush the cartridges if they are particularly grimy in order to remove the debris. However, brushing erodes the filter media, necessitating more frequent cartridge replacements as you brush more frequently.
Advantages of cartridge filters
- effective filtering abilities
- No backwashing means less water waste.
- Simple to replace and clean filters
Grids in Diatomaceous Earth (DE) filters are coated in a crumbly white powder that traps undesirable contaminants while letting water pass through. Diatoms, a type of single-celled algae, are used to make the powder. High concentrations of silica found in diatoms give DE the majority of its filtration power. Sand also contains a significant amount of silica.
The most effective DE filters are able to filter out particles as small as 5 microns. Although DE filters are the priciest and most labor-intensive pool filters on the market, they offer the best water quality for your pool at a price.
When the pressure gauge on the tank reads high pressure, maintenance is necessary. DE filters are backwashed like sand filters, but you then need to refill the filter with DE powder. The tricky part comes at this point. When handling DE powder, it is advised to always wear a mask because DE powder used in pools can be toxic if inhaled in large quantities and can irritate the lungs. Additionally, your city might have rules regarding the disposal of DE, like not backwashing into streams or sewage systems. We advise getting in touch with your municipality to learn more about regional DE disposal laws. The filter should also be disassembled and the grids cleaned thoroughly with a hose at least once a year.
Benefits of DE filters
Backwashing is only required occasionally.
Filter grids can last for several years with proper maintenance.
Drawbacks of DE filters
High level of upkeep
DE powder should not be inhaled because it is toxic.
Potential limitations on disposal
What kind of pool filter is best?
The pool filter that best suits your needs, as well as those of your pool, is the best pool filter. Consider filtration capacity, initial cost, ease of use, routine maintenance requirements, and maintenance costs when selecting a filter. Making the best decision for you and your pool will be made easier if you are knowledgeable about the various filter types. However, whichever filter type you decide on, pick the biggest size that’s suitable for your pool. Large filters clean contaminated water much more quickly than smaller filters and require less maintenance.
Additionally, Filbur is a well-respected brand of pool filters that can offer reliable, safe protection for your pool. A reinforced centre core, premium filter media, and antimicrobial end caps are all components of Filbur pool filters, which together offer advanced protection and guarantee clear, contaminant-free pool water. Maintenance and filter replacements are simple because Filbur replacement cartridges are made to precisely match the original manufacturer’s specifications.
What are the prices of pool filters?
Depending on the type, size, and complexity of the filter, pool filters can range in price from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. Sand filters typically cost the least, while DE filters are the most expensive.
Filters for above-ground versus in-ground pools
A pool’s filters, both in-ground and above-ground, keep it free of dirt and other debris. Water is pumped to the filter, where it is filtered using DE media, cartridge filters, or sand filters before being returned to the pool clean. Size and location are the main distinctions between above-ground and in-ground pool filters.
The average size of an in-ground pool is greater than an above-ground pool, and the filters are built to handle more water flowing through them at a faster rate. In-ground pool filters are typically scaled down versions of their above-ground counterparts.
Additionally, in-ground pool filters are placed close to your house or as near the electrical panel as possible, whereas above-ground pool filters are positioned next to the pool below water level. In-ground pool filters have to work a little harder and may need more skimmers, jets, and suction lines than above-ground systems because they have to deal with more feet of plumbing and gravity.
What about a pool filter?
Yes, a pool filter is necessary. Filters eliminate dust, debris, and insects while improving chlorine distribution for bacterial eradication. A pool filter is necessary for a healthy pool atmosphere.
The exception is some small volume pools, which even though they don’t need filters, still need regular water treatment. Both chlorine and a flocculant are necessary for pool maintenance without a filter. A flocculant is a substance that groups impurities in the water that float, making it simple to remove them with a net or other cleaning tool.