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Thread: Does sand becomes less effective over time

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    Does sand becomes less effective over time

    Moved to a new topic. If the thought occurs to you that you might even maybe be hijacking, just start a new topic. JasonLion

    Good question, Terry, as we were discussing this last night with the neighbor. Sorry to hijack your post, we have the same exact filter as Terry, and this is the third season of using it. We have been backwashing since Saturday and have noticed some sand loss. Wewere wondering if the sand becomes less effective over time (years) of filtering.
    Vinyl IG 30,000 Gal
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    Re: How do you clean a pool filter?

    Backwashing since Saturday? You've had your valve on backwash and been runnning the pump since Saturday???

    I replaced my sand recently because I needed a new filter. It was installed in 1989 and the sand was still filtering. I don't think a few years is going to hurt it.
    Built in 1957 44,000 gallon in-ground, Wet Edge Primera Stone in Sky Blue, Intelliflo VF Pump, 600 lb. Pentair Triton II TR-100 Sand Filter, CircuPool RG 60 Plus SWG, TF-100 test kit
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    Re: How do you clean a pool filter?

    Quote Originally Posted by RobbieH
    Backwashing since Saturday? You've had your valve on backwash and been runnning the pump since Saturday?
    You couldn't read my mind?!?!? :P Been backwashing when the pressure gets to 16. It operates at 10. We typically run the filter 24/7.

    I thought it might be premature to change the sand yet, but it is worth asking about. The previous filter on was a DE filter that was a total PITA. We have been please so far with the sand filter.
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    Re: Does sand becomes less effective over time

    I'm very happy with the operation of my sand filter.

    16 is a good point to backwash. How quickly do you get there? It takes a pretty long time for mine to need backwashing.
    Built in 1957 44,000 gallon in-ground, Wet Edge Primera Stone in Sky Blue, Intelliflo VF Pump, 600 lb. Pentair Triton II TR-100 Sand Filter, CircuPool RG 60 Plus SWG, TF-100 test kit
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Does sand becomes less effective over time

    Most of us here believe that sand lasts more or less forever, unless it gets heavy calcium scale. There are others who think sand should be replaced every five to seven years.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Does sand becomes less effective over time

    Robbie--Right now once every 24/36 hours. We have yet to see the bottom of the pool b/c the pool is so cloudy.

    Jason--Thanks for making the new post--guess I need to go read the rules again.
    Unfortunately, the pool was not closed properly last fall, so we had a lot of algae, leaf litter, and scale. I am going to avoid changing the sand for now.
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    Ohm_Boy's Avatar
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    Re: Does sand becomes less effective over time

    Has anyone ever determined a definitive answer to this age-old question?
    I've heard that some of the sharp corners and "craggies" of the grains of sand can wear smoother over time, and that due to this, the sand becomes less capable of filtering smaller particles.
    Personally, I feel like there is SO much surface area involved with a filter full of sand that it would be really tough to make a difference in filtering ability with normal aging of sand.
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    Re: Does sand becomes less effective over time

    Quote Originally Posted by Ohm_Boy
    Has anyone ever determined a definitive answer to this age-old question?
    I've heard that some of the sharp corners and "craggies" of the grains of sand can wear smoother over time, and that due to this, the sand becomes less capable of filtering smaller particles.
    Personally, I feel like there is SO much surface area involved with a filter full of sand that it would be really tough to make a difference in filtering ability with normal aging of sand.
    Silica sand is quite resistant and should last about 10 years easily ( no matter what your pool supply store tells you)
    Attention should be paid that there is not too much sand in the filters in order to allow a proper lifting of the sand in the filter
    when performing a back wash.
    13,500 gal IG 3'-5', BBB (less Borates), Hayward DE filter, 400k BTU Hayward heater, 2HP A.O. Smith pump, 2 skimmers, Sunstone Pearl "Aqua Blue" surface, Colorsplash 3G light, Blue Diamond cleaner, A.O. Smith 6' slide, K-2006 test kit

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    Re: Does sand becomes less effective over time

    I think that eventually the sand particles do smooth out and become more spherical. I think that this probably does reduce the filter efficiency somewhat. I think that changing the sand can be helpful after 10 to 20 years.

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    Re: Does sand becomes less effective over time

    Just replaced my sand filter and sand after twenty-five years, due to broken parts that could no longer be located. I will say that the clarity has improved slightly, but not a huge amount. It's also a larger filter. though, so should offer improved clarity, anyway. This would suggest to me that you should replace the sand every couple of decades, but the five years that pool stores recommend is overkill.
    18X36' 25000 gal Jacuzzi vinyl Inground Pool (1985) with resin sidewalls, newer Jacuzzi 1 hp two-speed pump and sand filter. Raypak propane heater, Rainbow 320 chlorinator (mostly use bleach).
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