For several reasons I had come to believe that back-washing then recharging my DE filter was a bad idea. After some thinking on the matter I decided to try an experiment. A few months before the summer I THOROUGHLY cleaned my filter and meticulously added the proper amount (ok maybe a little more than suggested) of DE to the filter. I left it alone for the entire summer. Now, we didn't have much rain here in DFW but I get a lot of wind and dust at my place. I watched the pressure gauge and to my amazement I made it about 4-5 months before the pressure got up to the point where something had to be done... Now, this is normally when I would backwash, then put in more DE... well, not this time.
I Did backwash but then immediately removed the filter and hosed it off... The first thing I noticed is that it came out much cleaner than when I pulled it after 3 or so backwash/recharges. The Next thing I noticed is that it was WAY easier to hose off this time around. The last thing I noticed is that there was not nearly as much gunk in the bottom of the empty filter housing as there was the last time.
So, I am done with the backwash/recharge. From now on, when the pressure hits the limit, its a full clean. 1 hr of my time, 12 bucks of DE and I am good to go for 4-5 more months (barring heavy rains).
I think that when you backwash, you knock off the DE layer from the filter mesh. The buildup goes to the bottom of the filter housing and sits there. Then the bit of DE you put back in end up unevenly distributed and also layers on top of the crud that didnt fall... this creates a really nasty layering of much and de that is hard to wash off and is frankly disgusting.
My Pool was super low maintenance this summer... literally all I did was put in my half gal a day in bleach and add MA as needed for PH and empty the baskets every few days.... no backwashing and my water got a lot of use... The water is too clear and I can see all the imperfections on my (in bad need of re plaster) quartz plaster.