Filters & Filtration Media
There are multiple types of pool filters to choose from for your pool. The two most commonly used are cartridge and media filters. Cartridge filters use a surface filtering method, while media filters use a depth filtering process. Although different filtration systems, both can adequately filter microscopic contaminants from your pool to keep it clean.
Regardless of the type of filter you have, it's vital to maintain it to ensure it works consistently to its fullest potential and to extend the life of the product.
Generally, a cartridge filter is a cylindrical tank that houses a removable pleated filter element, which is where the water is filtered. To decide whether a cartridge filter is right for your situation, check out the pros and cons below.
- No backwashing - simply lift cartridges out and hose them down. This saves water.
- Performs well at lower speeds (perfect for energy-efficient variable speed pumps).
- Filters particles as small as 10 microns.
- Smaller footprint than media filters.
- Need to replace worn filter cartridges roughly every three years.
- Need to deep clean cartridges 1-2 times a year.
Media filters are circular tanks that can accommodate different types of filtering media. Water from the pool is pumped into the media filter, which traps microscopic particles while allowing the water to pass through and return to the pool. As your media filter cleans your pool, collected debris particles begin to build up and block water from moving freely. For this reason, it’s important to regularly backwash or reverse water flow to release debris particles out through a waste line.
- Easy maintenance.
- Can filter a range of microns depending on the media used.
- Media can last a long time before it needs to be replaced.
If choosing a media filter for your pool, you’ll also be faced with choosing a media type. The four most common media types include sand, glass, diatomaceous earth and zeolite.
Sand: Sand media is very common as it is affordable, readily available and easy to use. Sand filters remove particles as small as 25 microns.
Glass: Glass media has environmental and sanitary benefits over sand media, and clogs less than sand, too. It typically comes in two grades, course and fine, and requires both to work effectively.
Diatomaceous Earth (DE): DE filters use a powdered form of fossilised shells to remove particles as small as 5 microns. DE performs better than sand media, but is significantly more expensive and requires more maintenance.
Zeolite: Zeolites are mineral with a porous structure and can filter down to as small as 1 micron. Zeolites can also remove ammonia and other nitrogenous compounds from the water. Zeolite requires “recharging” every 5 years with salt to rejuvenate and prolong the life of the media.