by the Pool Service & Repair Experts at GL Pools
Every swimming pool depends on proper pool filtration to keep out dirt and debris, reduce algae growth, and prevent waterborne illness. And when your goal is a luxurious backyard oasis, dirty water can really pull the plug on your ability to enjoy your pool. In this blog, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about optimal pool filtration including what makes up a pool filter system, how it works, and the different types of filter systems available.
How Does Pool Filtration Work?
A pool filtration system is made up of several components including everything from pipes and valves to skimmer baskets, but we’ll focus on the two main parts: the pump and the filter. Pool filtration works by using the pump to pull water from the pool, filtering out contaminants, and then returning clean water back into the pool. The water travels through the pump and then into the filter, where dirt, debris, and bacteria are removed. Once the water is successfully filtered, it travels through the plumbing until it returns to the pool.
To ensure optimal performance, pool filter maintenance should be factored into your regularly scheduled swimming pool maintenance. Otherwise, you may find yourself unable to safely use your pool due to poor water quality. However, with professional pool filter service from GL Pools, you won’t have to worry about things like excessive bacteria growth, cloudy water, or unexpected equipment failures due to clogs.
Popular Types of Filters
There are several different types of pool filters to choose from. Below are the three main types in order of least to most effective.
Sand filters are typically the least effective type of pool filtration. They function by transferring the water from the top of the tank, through the sand, and down to the bottom of the tank using high levels of pressure. As the water travels down, the edges of the sand trap dirt, debris, and waste, preventing it from re-entering the pool. These require the least frequent pool filter cleaning.
Coming in second in terms of function and efficiency, cartridge filters prevent particles from polluting your pool’s water by employing tall cylinders comprised of dirt-trapping fibers. They are enclosed within a pressurized tank and stabilized via a closure plate. By forcing the water through polyester filters, dirt and debris are trapped, allowing for the return of clean water. We typically recommend having your pool filter cleaning and inspection every 3-6 months, depending on use.
3. Diatomaceous Earth (DE)
Diatomaceous earth (DE) filters are by far the best in terms of their filtration capabilities. Compared to sand and cartridge filters, DE filters are extremely compact and they are capable of filtering out even the tiniest of particles. Much like sand filters, DE filters are backwashed, which means it is cleaned by reversing the flow of water through your pool filtration system. However, it regularly needs fresh DE powder to maintain optimal performance.
No matter which pool filter you prefer, if you want to keep it functioning as efficiently as possible, the following are some useful tips to keep your pool filtration system running smoothly:
- Increase water flow to the skimmer
- Balance the valve placement
- Ensure there is a good amount of water movement
- Consider backwashing the filter to increase water flow in between quarterly filter cleans
Supporting Optimal Pool Filtration
Regular checkups and maintenance go a long way to preserve a healthy pool environment and avoid year-round pool algae treatment. And while the pool filtration process is automatic, several circumstances can arise and challenge its effectiveness. For starters, you don’t want your cleaner to have too much power while pulling in the air as it can cause it to climb out of the pool. If this happens, it can make the filter dirtier and decrease its effectiveness. It’s also important to ensure that your pump is getting enough water. If it doesn’t, this can cause cavitation which can damage internal components and require a pool pump repair, often with the impeller. Also worth noting is the impact of using a solar rooftop pool heater. Because the water has to travel further, it may reduce the flow and cause your pool filter to be less efficient.
When maintaining an average-sized pool, the pump should be allowed to run for 8-10 hours during the summer and 6-8 hours in the winter. For three-fourths of that time, it should be set to 1500-2000 RPMs on variable speed and 2500-3200 for at least an hour to ensure the pool is turning over enough and that the cleaner is moving. Ideally, your pool should turn over 3-4 times daily, converting RPMs to gallons per minute to ensure this is the case.
Contact GL Pools Today for Your Pool Filter Maintenance Needs
As part of your regular pool cleaning service schedule, our pool filter service will ensure optimal run times and pool filtration so that your pool is crystal clear and swim-ready, year-round. For more information, contact us today. Our team of talented professionals is happy to answer any questions you may have as well as get you scheduled for your next pool filter service as soon as possible.