How to clean your own swimming pool filters, and keep them clean

How to clean your own swimming pool filters, and keep them clean

How to Keep Your Pool Filter Clean

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Filtration is part of the two-part process of keeping your pool clean, with water treatment with pool chemicals the other part of this function. Pool filters accomplish the physical process of removing dirt, debris, and algae that are suspended in your pool water.

First, here’s how to tell when your pool filter needs to be cleaned. Take note of the pressure gauge on the filter. When it goes up to 10 pounds per square inch (PSI) above its normal operating level, it’s usually a good time to clean your pool filter.

Cleaning Sand Filters

To clean a pool filter that uses sand as the filter medium, reverse the flow of water by turning your regulator valve at the top of the tank to backwash. The backwash cycle should last until water passing through the sight glass looks clean. Then turn the valve to the rinse position and run this cycle for at least 30 seconds. When the filter is very dirty, you may need to repeat this process two or three times. Never turn the valve while the pump is running.

Cleaning DE Filters

Clean your DE pool filter as you would a sand filter, but be sure to add new Diatomaceous Earth powder after each backwashing. To do this, mix DE powder in a bucket of water until it has a milky consistency, then slowly pour it through the skimmer while the pump is running. At the beginning of each season, disassemble the filter completely and clean the grids with filter cleaner.

Cartridge Filters

Unlike sand or DE filters, cartridge pool filters cannot be backwashed, and cartridges must be removed for cleaning. But the good news is that cartridge filters are a breeze to clean. Simply remove the cartridge from the tank (with the pump off), take it out, hose it off, and soak it in filter cleaner for eight hours (or overnight). After soaking, spray and rinse the cartridge for about five to six minutes, then put it back into the tank. Since the soaking time for cartridges can interfere with pool use, you may want to keep two cartridges on hand so you always have a clean one to use while the other is soaking.