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Thread: DE Powder Dump Method

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    Join Date
    May 2016
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    DE Powder Dump Method

    Howdy, folks - I'm new to pool ownership and am humbled by the learning curve. I was on this site a lot last year and a bit this year as I open my pool myself for the first time. My pool starts are:


    • In-ground
    • 23000 gallons
    • Hayward DE 4820 filter


    I added enough water to get the skimmer going and I added super shock and algaecide and mistakenly ran the pump for several hours before adding DE powder. When I did add the DE powder, I pretty much dumped six pounds in the skimmer and patted myself preemptively on the back. Less than a minute later, my returns started spitting cloudy water into the pool. I inspected the grids of my filter and they look good and didn't seem to have much algae on them, despite running without DE powder.

    I have to leave for the weekend and was planning on leaving the pump running to filter out all the dead algae, etc.. Is it safe to assume that 1) I added DE way too quickly and 2) all the powder will eventually return to the filter?

    Thanks much!

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: DE Powder Dump Method

    Quote Originally Posted by applebag View Post
    Howdy, folks - I'm new to pool ownership and am humbled by the learning curve. I was on this site a lot last year and a bit this year as I open my pool myself for the first time. My pool starts are:


    • In-ground
    • 23000 gallons
    • Hayward DE 4820 filter


    I added enough water to get the skimmer going and I added super shock and algaecide and mistakenly ran the pump for several hours before adding DE powder. When I did add the DE powder, I pretty much dumped six pounds in the skimmer and patted myself preemptively on the back. Less than a minute later, my returns started spitting cloudy water into the pool. I inspected the grids of my filter and they look good and didn't seem to have much algae on them, despite running without DE powder.

    I have to leave for the weekend and was planning on leaving the pump running to filter out all the dead algae, etc.. Is it safe to assume that 1) I added DE way too quickly and 2) all the powder will eventually return to the filter?

    Thanks much!
    No.

    The speed you added should make no difference at all.

    Inside the filter, the DE coats outsides of the screens. Picture a layer of tiny sponges on top a chicken wire grid. That's about it, just on a microscopic scale. The water flows through the holes in the sponges and out. The sponges themselves should never pass through the mesh support. Since yours did, there has to be something wrong inside the filter. You could have a bad multiport valve, where some of the incoming water gets sent right back to the returns. Usually if that happens, water also leaks out the backwash port all the time, too. More likely is a small hole or a pulled-out stitch or some plastic component is not seated properly.

    As far as it all getting filtered out, it'll never happen. The DE will settle out on the floor so you get to vacuum it up. It won;t stay in suspension for the skimmer to pull it through the filter. And it wouldn't filter out anyway; if it got past the screens once, it'll do it again.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    kcindc's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
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    Re: DE Powder Dump Method

    DE filters should never be run without the DE powder. I've had all 3 types of failures (grids, manifold and spider gasket) for my 1980s DE filter.

    As Richard mentioned, check your multiport valve and the spider gasket and any tears or cracks. I had a microscopic looking hairline crack in my manifold and I was amazed how much DE was shot back into the pool. Another time I had a small tear in my grids that wasn't easy to see until I took the grids off of the holder.

    You really have to take it all apart and inspect carefully.
    Karen
    33K IG w spa plaster, Pentair 1HP Whisperflo, DE Filter, SWG CircuPool RJ-60, Dolphin Triton Plus, Raypak Dig 336K BTU, TF-100.
    Pool Math Chlorine / CYA Chart SLAM - Shock Level And Maintain
    2017 replaster/retile

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Burlington, Vermont
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    Re: DE Powder Dump Method

    Thanks a million for the assistance! I removed the grid assembly and inspected them all - no rips or missed stitches. The manifold held water perfectly, no cracks, etc.. (Putting the grid back in the manifold was a lesson in patience.) In the end, I think the issue was that the manifold wasn't securely on the manifold pipe or the O-ring on the pipe needed some lubricant. I started vacuuming and it no powder exited the returns. I'm assuming that with all the algae my pool had to begin with, I should probably backwash and add new powder now?

    Thanks again - you guys are an invaluable resource.

  5. Back To Top    #5

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    Oct 2015
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    Re: DE Powder Dump Method

    After you backwash you only need to add 60% of the DE charge. Not all gets removed when you do a backwash. I run my pump on high d pour a scoop of DE into the skimmer. Once it's gone, I add another.
    Watch your pressure gauge. When the gauge reads 25% above your clean filter initial reading, then it's time to backwash.
    In ground, 14,000 gallon, white plaster, unheated, stone waterfall, DE Filter, Rainbow 320 Cl, Polaris 3900, FloVis flow meter, F100 test kit, Circupool RJ30+ SWG, Circupool VJ1/Speck Badu EcoM3V variable speed pump.

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    kcindc's Avatar
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    Re: DE Powder Dump Method

    Good news! Happy to hear that you didn't have to replace anything.
    Karen
    33K IG w spa plaster, Pentair 1HP Whisperflo, DE Filter, SWG CircuPool RJ-60, Dolphin Triton Plus, Raypak Dig 336K BTU, TF-100.
    Pool Math Chlorine / CYA Chart SLAM - Shock Level And Maintain
    2017 replaster/retile

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