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Thread: pool filter throwing back dirt from cartridge filter

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    Join Date
    Jun 2016

    pool filter throwing back dirt from cartridge filter

    I was hoping someone could help me, my cartridge filter keeps allowing dirt to be throw back into pool. I bought a new filter and it work for 2 weeks last year then I closed the pool. Since I have opened the pool AS I am vacuuming it is throwing the dirt right back in. I would appreciate any help. At first I thought it might be algae building up but my husband said he could see it being throw back in as he was vacuuming the pool

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    mikemass's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Northern Howell, NJ

    Re: pool filter throwing back dirt from cartridge filter

    Most likely a hole in your filter media. Remove cartridges and inspect them. Look in between every pleat for a tear.
    25 + year pool owner. Current pool (going on 11th year) - 38K gallon in ground Gunite/White Plaster, Spillover Spa, Hayward Cartridge Filter, Hayward 450k BTU NG Heater, Hayward Goldline Aqua Logic control with T-Cell-15 Salt Water Cell, Dolphin Explorer.
    You Need: Bleach, a A Test Kit & a Bookmark to "Pool School". Now what's your question?

  3. Back To Top    #3
    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Tallahassee, FL

    Re: pool filter throwing back dirt from cartridge filter

    Once you do what Mike says also put a sock over the return to catch some of it. Set it out and let it dry. Take a pic and share.

    Make sure your cart. is seated just right. I had to give mine a wiggle to seat it when I had a cart. filter.

    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit, Become a TFP supporter!

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    Mod Squad Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio

    Re: pool filter throwing back dirt from cartridge filter

    At first I thought it might be algae building up but my husband said he could see it being throw back in as he was vacuuming the pool.
    Before TFP, that very thing was happening to me as well and it was indeed algae. My single stack cartridge filter was overwhelmed, so it blew debris right-on by and out to my return jets. Just made a cloudy mess.

    Definitely look at Mike and Kim's suggestions first. If those don't resolve your issue, update your signature with the type of equipment you have installed and also post a full set of test results from your TF-100 or Taylor K-2006 test kit. That info may also prove valuable. Good luck!
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Chicago, IL

    Re: pool filter throwing back dirt from cartridge filter

    The above is great advice to get you started and those are definitely the right first steps, but I want to mention something that happened to me and, surprisingly, I cannot recall seeing any other instances of this on the forum.

    Beginngin of last season, I had a small algae problem, SLAMed, defeated it, all good.
    Then, after a few days of no pool use and the cover on, dead algae would appear back on the floor. So, I thought I must still have a low level algae problem that I just didn't finish off. Removed ladders, checked the usual nooks and crannies, etc, passed OCLT, vacuumed it up. Then a few days would pass, same thing, dead algae on the floor (all the while chlorine consumption suggested nothing was living in my pool) After chasing algae ghosts for a few weeks, I finally recalled that I purchased a new cartridge media at the end of the prior season, saved $30 on Amazon vs. the Pool Store, great deal right? Checked for holes, proper seating, all of that stuff.

    So, at my wits end, I ran to the pool store, purchased a new cartridge, dropped it in and boom, everything cleared right up. As another test, I opened this season with my discount filter (no algae needing to be cleared) and I just didn't have the sparkly water that I am used to as a dedicated TFPer. Switched back to my more expensive filter and sparkly TFP water restored.

    Keep that in mind. Unfortunately, I do not see any obvious difference between the two cartridges and neither is there a description on Amazon about filtering ability (down to certain microns or whatever) that would allow me to distinguish, other than the media on one is white and on the other is more blue. No idea if that is at all meaningful or telling though.
    Dedicated TFPer since 2012 with recommended test kit
    Above ground, 30 foot round pool, 21,000 gallons
    Hayward 150 sq foot cartridge filter, 1HP Waterway pump
    Raypak 400K BTU NG Heater!
    Installed in 2006? (just a guess, pool came with house I purchased in June 2012)

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    Cap'n Hook's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    South Central Texas

    Re: pool filter throwing back dirt from cartridge filter

    One thing to make sure, if your not installing the cartridge filter into the housing CORRECTLY, the water may bypass the filter entirely, if the filter cartridge isn't seated on the pump inlet and outlets. If you're using cheap type A or C filters, the center large holes sometimes don't "slip" into the correct positions because sometimes these holes in the cartridge filters are formed too small at the factory. When you reinstall the filter cartridge into the housing, it should slide EASILY onto the lower housing mount. Make sure the rubber gasket is correctly fitted on your pump housing lid, and it should also EASYLY slide into the top of the filter cartridge. If you're forcing the pump cover onto the filter cartridge it most likely isn't seating properly into the top of the filter cartridge and is bypassing your filter cartridge.

    I had this problem with a few Walmart filters. I purchased a quality filter off Amazon, it fit perfect, can be washed and reused, and seems to filter the water better as well.
    18'x48" Intex AGP ~6300 gallons
    Intex Krystal Clear 635T 1500gph filter pump running 8hrs/day
    Water temp 81
    I transformed my pool from a swamp into a crystal clear beautiful pool, thanks to TFP!

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Re: pool filter throwing back dirt from cartridge filter

    I have a hayward 4000gph cartridge filter that spits ultra fine dirt/silt back into pool every time I vacuum. I now have a polishing bag (Duda Diesel Filter Bag) I put on when I'm vacuuming and it catches all the ultra fine dirt, as well as algae if I lose control of my levels while on a business trip.
    Intex 18ft dia. Ultraframe, 6500 gal. above ground Intex pool with Hayward C550 cartridge type filter and Intex Krystal Clear Ozone and saltwater system model ZS8110, Taylor K-2006 test Kit, Pool filter supplemented with Duda Diesel 1 micron filter bag
    Located in Cypress, Tx.

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