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Thread: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

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    How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    I just switched to fiber from DE and I'm dying of curiosity to find out what it looks like on the grids. I assume if I open the filter, the media will stay on the grids, right? So my question is what should it look like? i.e. How thick should it be for effective filtration?
    20K gal IG plaster pool, Manually chlorinated with 6% bleach, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite Dura-Glas II pump, Pentair FNS Plus 48 DE filter, Polaris 280

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    harleysilo's Avatar
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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    take pictures when you do, i want to know what mine will look like too.
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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    I certainly will, but it won't be before this weekend. Hopefully before then someone will chime in and warn me if I'm making a mistake!
    20K gal IG plaster pool, Manually chlorinated with 6% bleach, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite Dura-Glas II pump, Pentair FNS Plus 48 DE filter, Polaris 280

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    Samantha_in_AL's Avatar
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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    Beez, are you talking about Purifiber? I use it, and it will stay put. It's good stuff.
    AG 18' X 52" Round Pacifica Pool w/ Metal Diamond Unibead Liner. Installed in March 2007.
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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Samantha_in_AL
    Beez, are you talking about Purifiber? I use it, and it will stay put. It's good stuff.
    Thanks for the response, Samantha. The brand I used is Zeofiber, but I'm betting the 2 brands are similar enough to be almost the same.

    Have you ever opened your filter to observe how thick the media is on the grids? Besides curiosity, I wonder because the filter pressure was lower than usual after switching from DE.
    20K gal IG plaster pool, Manually chlorinated with 6% bleach, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite Dura-Glas II pump, Pentair FNS Plus 48 DE filter, Polaris 280

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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    What is fiber and why did you switch to it from DE? Is it cheaper, does it filter better, or is there some other reason.
    20x40 IG vinyl, heatpump and solar and 3 siberian huskies, 10kw PV solar electric system. Nikon Photographer D800e dSLR.

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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    Quote Originally Posted by kirbinster
    What is fiber and why did you switch to it from DE? Is it cheaper, does it filter better, or is there some other reason.
    Cellulose fiber is an alternate filter media for DE filters. It is more eco-friendly, and easier to handle. It costs around the same as DE. Marketers claim it filters better than DE, but I doubt it. I will be happy if it filters as well as DE, and will put up with it if it even comes close, because...I hate DE! And that in a nutshell is about the only reason I can think of to switch really. If you are happy with DE, there really isn't a compelling reason to change.
    20K gal IG plaster pool, Manually chlorinated with 6% bleach, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite Dura-Glas II pump, Pentair FNS Plus 48 DE filter, Polaris 280

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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    Can you elaborate a little more on why you "hate" DE? I am just getting ready to change from a sand filter to a new DE filter. I was just getting ready to start a new post to ask what to do with the "used" DE when I backwash. We live in the country, but if its going to be a contaminate or hurt my yard, I don't want to be running it off there. Its way too far to run a backwas hose to the road or pasture. I have heard of some sort of inline seperator, I think, that collects the used DE, but havent been able to find anything on one. Responses from anyone with knowledge on the matter are GREATLY appreciated!! We live in an area where it is pretty much pure blow sand and get ALOT in the pool. I have a feeling I will be backwashing more than most.
    25,000 gallon Vinyl Lined Inground. One skimmer, 2 returns. Pentair WhisperFlo WFDS-4, Hayward Pro Grid DE 3620 with VariFlow valve, LaarsLite 2 propane heater

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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    Quote Originally Posted by westc
    Can you elaborate a little more on why you "hate" DE? I am just getting ready to change from a sand filter to a new DE filter. I was just getting ready to start a new post to ask what to do with the "used" DE when I backwash. We live in the country, but if its going to be a contaminate or hurt my yard, I don't want to be running it off there. Its way too far to run a backwas hose to the road or pasture. I have heard of some sort of inline seperator, I think, that collects the used DE, but havent been able to find anything on one. Responses from anyone with knowledge on the matter are GREATLY appreciated!! We live in an area where it is pretty much pure blow sand and get ALOT in the pool. I have a feeling I will be backwashing more than most.
    I will elaborate, but fair warning, I am obviously biased.

    I consider DE to be an environmental pollutant. In my case, I backwash down the sewer line, so what do I care? Well I just don't really like shoving a problem down the line for someone else to clean up. In your case, you will be backwashing right to the ground. If you agree that DE is in fact a pollutant, do you really want to dump it over and over onto your property? I don't know anything about the separation tanks so I can't comment on that. I could go on, but in the end it is the disposal that I see as the biggest problem. Luckily, there is an alternative in cellulose. It may cause a mess too, but at least it is biodegradable.

    BTW, you'll get better results if you start a new thread asking opinions on filters given your particular environmental circumstances.
    20K gal IG plaster pool, Manually chlorinated with 6% bleach, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite Dura-Glas II pump, Pentair FNS Plus 48 DE filter, Polaris 280

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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    DE is a respiratory carcinogen, which is to say that if you breathe enough of it in, you might eventually get sick. As used around swimming pools it is reasonably safe, but if a cloud of DE becomes airborne you should stay far away from it.

    Celulose alternatives used to be far more expensive, but in the last two years the price has come down dramatically to the point where it is very competitive. The feedback I have heard is that all of the brands of cellulose filter media work quite. A few people notice small improvements in backwashing, others notice small additional trouble backwashing. Everyone so fas has said that it either filters about the same or perhaps a little better.
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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Beez
    I just switched to fiber from DE and I'm dying of curiosity to find out what it looks like on the grids. I assume if I open the filter, the media will stay on the grids, right? So my question is what should it look like? i.e. How thick should it be for effective filtration?
    The Pentair FNS Plus 48 DE filter has 48 square feet of surface area, and requires 4.8 pounds of DE.

    DE has a bulk density of about 20 pounds per cubic foot. 4.8 pounds of DE will have a volume of about 0.24 cubic feet (230 fluid ounces, 7.18 quarts or 1.8 gallons). That works out to about 1/16" coating, which is about what you should see on a fresh fill. The coating will usually be thicker after a season of backwashing and recharging because a backwash rarely gets off all of the old DE, which leads to a gradual buildup of excess DE.

    http://www.pentairpool.com/pool-pro/pro ... ers-61.htm

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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    Quote Originally Posted by westc
    I have heard of some sort of inline seperator, I think, that collects the used DE, but havent been able to find anything on one. Responses from anyone with knowledge on the matter are GREATLY appreciated!! We live in an area where it is pretty much pure blow sand and get ALOT in the pool. I have a feeling I will be backwashing more than most.
    http://www.pentairpool.com/pdfs/SeparationTankIG.pdf

    http://www.pentairpool.com/pdfs/DESepar ... OM.pdf.pdf

    http://www.hayward-pool.com/prd/Pro-Gri ... _-1___.htm

    http://www.hayward-pool.com/pdf/manuals/manual52.pdf

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    Re: How "thick" should filter media be in DE filter?

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesW
    DE has a bulk density of about 20 pounds per cubic foot. 4.8 pounds of DE will have a volume of about 0.24 cubic feet (230 fluid ounces, 7.18 quarts or 1.8 gallons). That works out to about 1/16" coating, which is about what you should see on a fresh fill.
    That's the information I was looking for! Thanks, James!

    So the answer to my "thickness" question is: A very thin coating.

    Now, just to be sure, my last question: Will I cause any problems by opening up the filter? Meaning will I have to redo/refill with fiber media if I open it at this point?
    20K gal IG plaster pool, Manually chlorinated with 6% bleach, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite Dura-Glas II pump, Pentair FNS Plus 48 DE filter, Polaris 280

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