How to Clean a Pool Filter

In Arizona, there is dust constantly swirling through the desert air, which eventually settles back on land. Not only does dirt and debris collect in our yards, roads, and rooftops, but also our pools. If you want to know how to clean a pool filter, you will need some help. Pool water in any location is always susceptible to bugs, debris, slime, and bacteria, however, this gunk tends to be more common in the Phoenix area. Here, our dusty, mountainous climate makes it especially easy for rocks and wind to kick up whatever is lying on the ground, only to carry it right into our backyards.

We’ve all experienced cloudy, greenish looking pool water at least once as a pool owner. This sight can be alarming as it is often difficult to know just where the root of the problem lies. There are so many components to a pool’s operation, understanding which part may be malfunctioning is no easy feat.

Most likely, if you notice you pool water is not looking as sparkling and clear as it usually does, something is not working properly in the pump, motor or filter of the pool. Knowing which is the challenge, though, and having to dismantle and clean each part to check is a daunting task that Admiral Pools is happy to take on.

The most common cause for an unclean pool is the filter. The filter of a pool ensures that the pool water is rid of the gunk that collects in everyone’s pools. This debris is unavoidable, but can be prevented by having a filter system in place that is running properly. Before you begin, you should be sure that you are confident that you know how to clean a pool filter.

Because filters typically run about three times every day, they are easily worn down and damaged. This damage may come in the form of a filter that has large gaps, decreasing the amount of debris that is actually blocked from entering the pool. A filter may also become blocked from the dirt and grime that it has been catching for months. In this scenario, the filter is no longer able to do its job because debris big or small will not pass through. Filters are also a prime area for algae to thrive. Algae can build on top of the existing bacteria and can cause the filter to be blocked from doing its job correctly. Not to mention how easily the algae can spread from that area to the rest of the pool.

There are three different filter types that are used in most residential and commercial pools. Diatomaceous Earth (DE) filters, sand filters, and cartridge filters all have pros and cons, and will ultimately help keep your pool clean.

DE Filter Systems

If your pool keeps clean via a DE filter, debris is removed quickly and efficiently. This kind of filter removes extremely small particles, much smaller than a sand or cartridge filter ever could. The filtering is done by D.E. powder that is placed in the skimmer to trap the grime as it flows through. These filtering systems need backwashing to keep the filter clean, as well as new powder at least annually. Backwashing allows water to pass through the filter in the opposite direction to remove any particulate build up. In order to properly clean a D.E. filter, the filter needs to be drained, pump stopped, and grid removed. Having the cleanest D.E. filter possible is a necessity so that your pool water is safe to enjoy.

Sand Filter Systems

The way that a sand filter works is in the name. Sand that is graded for the purpose of trapping dust and debri is added to the filter for pool water to pass through. The sand does an excellent job at catching small pieces of dust, though it cannot catch debris as small as a D.E. filter. Like a D.E. filter, sand filters must be backwashed periodically so that the debris can be removed from the filter. Sand filters require less maintenance than other filters, too. The sand needs to be replaced every five to seven years, although it can often be difficult to determine when the filter begins failing its job. These sand filter changes cannot go undone without the pool suffering serious consequences.

Cartridge Filter Systems

Cartridge pool filters are inexpensive filters that remove debris a little larger than particles trapped by sand and D.E. filters. Cartridge filters only need to be replaced every three years or so, unless they are in use for a majority of the year. Here in Arizona, cartridge filters are used a great deal, so they require more cleaning and replacement than in other places. A cartridge filter is not cleaned by backwashing like other filters. Instead, they must be taken out, hosed down, and then put back in the filter. If cartridges are not cleaned regularly, they will not be able to catch all of the dirt that is necessary.

Admiral Pools can’t wait to get your pool’s filter up and running to keep your water clean. If you are unsure how or when to clean your pool’s filter, give us a call and let one of our experts take a look at no cost. Our technicians will walk you through the process and explain exactly what needs to be done in order to keep your pool water healthy.

Sand filter changes must be made every five years or so, and can be a hassle when the time comes. Admiral Pools can replace the sand in your filter with the correct tools and sand, in no time. Cartridge filter cleans are needed more regularly because they require a complete rinse off, and sometimes chemical help, to get rid of all of the debris, bacteria, dirt, and slime that has likely collected on the filter. Our technicians are happy to do the dirty work for you, so that you don’t have to worry about keeping up with your cartridge. Finally, Admiral Pool’s experts are ready to get your D.E. filter back to its cleanest state. Whether you need backwashing, or a total replacement of D.E. powder, we are happy to get the job done.

Admiral Pools has been cleaning the many different pool filtering systems on the market for decades. We can tackle the toughest pool water problems, many of which can be fixed by regular maintenance of the pool’s filter. No matter what kind of filter you decide is right for your pool, make sure to give Admiral Pools a call for any questions about how to clean a pool filter.

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