Your swimming pool filter traps oils and dirt which turns into a gummy, gooey mess that goes by the term ‘gunk’, or, if you have a sand-filter, ‘mud-balls’. As a general rule of thumb, your filter should be cleaned at least once a month during the swimming season.
We’d like to offer these tips for cleaning your swimming pool filter:
A cartridge filter uses a pleated fabric of woven polyester. Minerals, metals, dirt and oils get trapped inside a web made of thousands of fibers. Hosing the cartridge with high pressure water is a decent way to remove debris, but it doesn’t remove oil and mineral scales, or metal stains. Also, high pressure water can damage the cartridge, thereby reducing the cartridges effectiveness.
Remove the cartridge from the tank and give it a good hosing first to remove any visible debris. Fill a small trash can or larger bucket with water and pour in a granular filter cleaner. Stir until it is dissolved, and then drop your cartridge in for an overnight soaking.
Remove the cartridge from the solution and hose it thoroughly – until the suds stop forming. It’s important to allow the filter to dry completely prior to inserting it back into the tank. This will keep any bacteria from growing deep in the pleats. At Hawaiian Pool Builders, we recommend that you have an extra filter on hand, that way your pool days aren’t cut short while you wait for one to dry.
A sand pool filter uses specially graded sand that is about a half millimeter across, known as #20 silica sand. When used with the right sized pump, a sand filter is a very effective way of trapping dirt and oils.
Simply backwashing a sand filter is not an effective way to release trapped dirt and oils. While the smaller particles of debris and dirt are flushed out, the heavier minerals and oils coagulate together in clumps that fill the top few inches of the filter sand. A better method is to use a sand filter cleaner. You simply add it through the skimmer with the filter valve on the backwash position. After the cleaner is sucked into the filter, shut the pump off and allow the chemical to work overnight. Start it up again in the morning on the rinse setting to flush out the oils, minerals and dirt and you are all ready to go.
We are ready to answer any questions that you have about cleaning your filter.