Cleaning A Pool Filter
Filter Care for Inground Pools
Tips for proper care and maintenance, plus how to clean your swimming pool filters.
At the center of your swimming pool plumbing system & equipment is a very key component, the filter. Without it your pool water would never be clear, and the same if you do not care for it properly and clean regularly. Your can hire a pool filter cleaning service, or you can do it yourself – Are you keeping your pool filter clean?
If you are here to find out how to clean a swimming pool filter, you may want to know how a swimming pool filter works in order to be effective at properly performing a break-down and manual clean-out.
See this diagram as a visual reference to start: (Cartridge Filter Type)
The above diagram shows how water will enter into the pool filter inlet port and is forced through filtration media (Cartridge, DE, Sand) to leave behind any debris when exiting the filter from the returning port. Generally in most swimming pool filter models both of the inlet & outlet ports are close together and are called the bulkhead assembly. The inlet receives dirty water from the pool pump, and the outlet sends clean water back to the pool.
Key parts of a swimming pool filter:
- Pressure Gage
- Tension Band Clamp Assembly
- Air Relief Valve
- Type of Filtration Media
Before attempting to clean your filter, verify the type of swimming pool filter that is installed onto your pool equipment. There are 3 common types of pool filters for residential pools, in order of popularity they are; cartridge, DE, sand. Each of these types of filtration media offer varying degrees of efficiency, options and performance. The type of pool filter selected will depend on the application, usage, and type of swimming pool.
A cartridge swimming pool filter uses porous media pleated cylinders to collect high amounts of debris from the pool water that is circulated from the pump system. This type of pool filter is the easiest to clean, and the more long term cost effective type of swimming pool filter to own.
To clean a cartridge swimming pool filter you will need just 1 hour and a few tools:
- Water Hose
- High Pressure Jet Water hose nozzle
- Socket set
- Shop Towel
- Teflon Based O-Ring Lubricant
- Adjustable Wrench 1.5″
Since we can not cover all existing models of pool filters in this article, in general, these are the steps needed to break down the filter:
Note: ALWAYS TURN POOL EQUIPMENT OFF
- With the pool pump system OFF, release the air relief valve so the water inside of the tank will begin to drain.
- Locate the bottom drain plug on the front or back of the filter and remove.
- Using a standard socket set locate the correct size for the tension band clamp bolt.
- Remove the tension band bolt and clamp assembly, and top of filter.
At this time you should immediately inspect for any damages. Extended periods of high pressure can cause cracks on the internal parts of a pool filter.
Step 6 – Remove each element and clean. (Clean in each pleated opening)
- Never use a pressure washer to clean your filter elements
- Cleaning more frequently will help prolong element lifespan
- Never use harsh chemicals on the cartridge elements
Once you are satisfied with how clean you can get the elements, make sure to rinse out the inside of the bottom filter, and replace each element back onto the lower manifold.
- Use the shop towel the clean the o-ring seat on both halves of the filter casing, also clean the large o-ring.
IMPORTANT: Tighten the tension band clamp all the way!
Now just replace the bottom drain plug, hand tighten, and you’re all set!
We hope you have found some useful information about servicing your swimming pool filter, and we will cover different types of pool filters in future articles. If you still have questions about your filter or a problem that this article did not solve, don’t hesitate to ask! If you are in the Montgomery County TX area we can provide routine swimming pool care, swimming pool repairs, and more to help you keep enjoying that favorite place in your backyard!