How to Make Your Pool Filter Last Longer
Swimming pool filters require some basic care to ensure long life and reliable service. Here are some tips to help you keep your filter running strong.
Clean your cartridges on a regular basis. If you have a cartridge filter that only has one large cartridge inside of it, you probably need to clean it at least once a month. If your filter has three or four cartridges inside of it, you can likely go for about two months between cleanings.
When a filter is not cleaned regularly enough, it will restrict the circulation in the pool and cause extra backpressure in the plumbing. Filters should be cleaned with a garden hose only, not a pressure washer. Pressure washers can put holes in pool filter cartridge. Click here for more information on cleaning cartridge filters.
Backwashing a sand filter is a very easy process, and should be done every week or two. The most delicate part of a sand filter is the backwash valve. There are two different styles of backwash valves, Dial valves and Push-Pull valves.
Dial valves have a handle that you push down and turn to different positions. In order to get the most life out of a dial valve be sure to push the handle all the way down before you turn it. Also, it is a good idea to always turn the dial in the same direction. So if you turn the handle clockwise to get from filter mode to backwash mode, you want to continue to turn it clockwise to get it back to filter mode. This will keep the gasket inside the valve from wearing out too quickly.
Push-Pull valves have a piston assembly that you move up and down in order to put the filter into backwash mode. It is a good idea to lubricate the o-rings inside of the backwash valves at least twice a year. Make sure to only use silicone based lubricant for this purpose. Click here for more information on backwashing.
D.E. filters have the same kinds of backwash valves as sand filters, and require the same maintenance described above. Additionally, inside the tank of a D.E. Filter there are large grids that are covered with D.E. powder. Once a year you should open the tank and clean these grids thoroughly with a garden hose. Do not use a pressure washer on filter grids, as they can cause the grids to tear. While you have the filter apart, make sure that the grids are in good condition, and don't have any holes or rips. Click here for more information on cleaning a D.E. Filter.