This is my first post to this forum, although I have been reading y'all for a while now and have read more than once all the good tips from the Pool School section.
I have a 28,000 gallons (approx.) quartzite pool in Fayetteville Georgia (Atlanta suburb) with a 60 sf D.E filter.
Early this morning whilst my pump was running, I heard a very loud whistling noise coming from the pump: the filter tank pressure valve broke and water was "geizering" a good 15 feet through it. Upon further examination (at sun rise), the whole pressure valve blew up (including gauge), but more important, the fiber glass upper tank is cracked.
The pool was built about 5 years ago (previous owner had it done) and this is my 3rd season as an owner. I am actually a little bit surprised that I have already had to replace a pump motor (Paintair) and the D.E. grids. Now the tank fails! (I wounder if used equipement was used.) It is a Purex Nautilus NFS 60, and unfortunately it doesn't seem to be manufactured anymore. A quick internet search for parts returned around $80 for a complete pressure valve assembly and close to a $1000 for the upper tank!
So here are my questions to you:
1. How come the pressure built up so high that it cracked the tank? I backwashed the filter no later than this weekend and the whole filter was cleaned in May. To be honest, I noticed a little leak at the base of the pressure valve assembly that I was going to address at the end of the season.
2. Are the prices I found in the ball park or is there another way to fix this mess for cheaper?
3. Since my filter does not seem to be manufactured anymore, should I take this "opportunity" to replace the whole filter by something newer instead of just replacing parts? If yes, what system do you recommend? Is D.E. worth the aggravation to have to deal with the frequent maintenance or a sand filter, although not as efficient, a better compromise?
4. Since I am not going to have any filtration for a few days (at best) and it is still pretty warm here in the South (pool temp was at 84F this weekend), what can I do to make sure my pool does not turn into a swamp? (I use chlorine.)
Thank you all in advance!