Cleaning your pool filter is a necessary and vital part of maintaining a swimming pool. The good news is your filters can last for years with the proper care.
Much like other maintenance, it’s a good idea to set a regular schedule versus waiting to notice any signs that cleaning is necessary.
While this post won’t detail exactly how to clean your pool filter, use these tips to make the process easier. Then, you’re able to get back to swimming even faster.
1. When to Clean Your Filter
Ideally, check your pool filter once a week. A quick five-minute clean is usually all you need. At least a few times a year, take everything apart for a deep clean. This also helps you to see if the cartridge needs changing. Depending on the type of filter you have, you may need to perform a deep clean more often. However, always check it when doing your regular maintenance to check for any clogs or debris.
2. Know Your Filter Type
When cleaning your pool filter, each type has to be cleaned differently. The main three types include: cartridge, sand and D.E. (diatomaceous earth). Cartridge and sand are the most common as D.E. filters are more expensive.
While each cleans your pool differently, sand and D.E. filters can be backwashed. These two also don’t use cartridges. Sand filters use silica sand and D.E. filters use a white powder made from an aquatic plant. Cartridge filters use cartridges which you can rinse off and replace when needed.
No matter which type you’re using, check your owner’s manual to determine exactly how to clean them and when to replace the filtering system.
3. Turn Off Everything First
The single most important tip for cleaning your pool filter is to turn off everything first. Any power coming through the filter can hurt you and damage the filter if you try to take it apart while it’s running. A great way to ensure there’s no power going to your pool is to turn off your power at the breaker.
4. Open Air Relief Valve First
All pool filters are pressurized. To avoid getting hurt, you have to depressurize the filter by opening the air relief valve first. This is easy to do and only takes a minute. If you’re not sure where the air relief valve is located, check your filter’s owner manual. You can also look up the filter online if you don’t have the manual.
5. Gather Supplies First
Instead of just taking your pool filter apart and then deciding what you need, gather your cleaning supplies first. Each filter type also has a special type of cleaner for breaking up collected gunk. If you’re replacing the filtering component, you’ll also need to have that on hand.
In addition, have the following with you:
Replacement parts (if you have a cartridge filter, have a spare O-ring on hand and lubricant)
Bucket to soak parts if necessary
Backwash hose (for D.E. and sand filters only)
Wrenches to take apart components
Being prepared makes the job go much faster.
6. Inspect For Damage
Typically, if you notice your filter isn’t performing well and you know it’s clean, it may be damaged. Any time you’re cleaning your pool filter, inspect it for damage. It’s a good idea to get familiar with how your filter looks so you can identify damage. Look for cracks or parts that are loose.
This helps save you on costly repairs should the filter suddenly break. It only takes a minute to inspect the filter.
7. Clean All Elements
When you clean the filter, clean all of it. Carefully take apart the components to remove any buildup. Leaving buildup on certain parts causes the filter to get dirty faster and be less effective. Regularly cleaning everything helps the filter last much longer. Plus, the filtering system also lasts longer. Use your owner’s manual for details on assembly and disassembly.
You can space out deep cleanings to every several months as long as your filter is functioning correctly.
8. Replace When Necessary
Even with regular cleanings, you’ll still need to replace the filtering system sometimes. The exact schedule varies based on your usage and filter type. For instance, cartridge filters cartridges can last for up to four years with proper care. However, heavy usage may reduce that by a year or more.
Cleaning your pool filter helps you maintain a clean, clear pool. You can also use a pool cleaner to help with other cleaning chores.
If cleaning takes too long, skip it and let the professionals handle it for you. Contact Koko Head Pools today to set up a schedule and spend less time cleaning.