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Thread: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

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    Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    I am also a newbie, and in process of selecting PB. I am also wondering if the DE filter is worth the extra money. One PB said the cartridge was a "lot more work." Would like to know what "a lot" is?
    UNDER CONSTRUCTION - 16x28' Freeform Pool with sunshelf, 3.5'-5.5' depth;
    7' Spa raised 18", 6 jets alternating heights, Flagstone on raised beam
    Stonescapes mini pebble finish, Tropical Blue; Stonelock Artistic Pavers; Bronze aluminum screen enclosure
    Sta-Rite Intelliflo 3HP VS Pump and DE Filter, SWG, 400K BTU Gas Heater, Globrite LED Lights
    Easy Touch Automation with Screenlogic smartphone interface[/b]

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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    One big difference between DE and cartridge filters is water consumption. Backwashing will consume water. Washing cartridge filters also consumes water but probably is done far less per year (particularly if you also use skimmer socks).

    After buying a set of new cart filters, I make a point to clean the filters twice a year whether they need it or not, per the pressure. Mainly I try to do it when the weather is good, so that I am not needing to do it once it is too cold to want to get wet. For washing cartridge filters is a messy job, hose spray and all that. I wander all over the yard to wash the carts to save the waste water so I do not let that water run down the street.

    I rinse the skimmer socks every other day or whenever I check the skimmers.

    Personally I have also wondered about the safety of used DE. I know that swimming pool DE is not safe to inhale yet "natural" DE which has not been treated is not harmful. I do not know if the process of using DE in a filter makes the DE less harmful to inhale.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    Several threads here on best type of filter. Newbie reaction is normally to go with DE because it "Filters down to 3 (or something) microns"

    It's not that simple. Each type (sand, filter, DE) has it own advantages and disadvantages. The more debris and dirt and algae that get into your pool, sand filters get higher marks. A cleaner pool (say with a lanai) is a sure bet for a DE or Cartridge, IMO.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    Thanks for the feedback folks. (I am quickly learning that TFP is a great forum!!) I live in the Tampa Bay area, where there are water restrictions, and high cost of water/sewage. Will have screen enclosure, and no landscaping inside the screen area (to keep the area cleaner and lower maint.) So far, it sounds like cartridge is not a problem even though it's cheaper, as I don't mind cleaning it 2x per year.
    UNDER CONSTRUCTION - 16x28' Freeform Pool with sunshelf, 3.5'-5.5' depth;
    7' Spa raised 18", 6 jets alternating heights, Flagstone on raised beam
    Stonescapes mini pebble finish, Tropical Blue; Stonelock Artistic Pavers; Bronze aluminum screen enclosure
    Sta-Rite Intelliflo 3HP VS Pump and DE Filter, SWG, 400K BTU Gas Heater, Globrite LED Lights
    Easy Touch Automation with Screenlogic smartphone interface[/b]

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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    Depends on the DE filter. Pentair has the quad de's with a separation tank that allows you to remove the used de and send clean water back to the pool. Askmalot of questions about filters and you will get an almost never ending response.
    Over 30 years in the pool business
    We build vinyl, fiberglass, stainless steel pools
    Certified in Hydraulics

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    With an Enclosed pool, the cartridge is probably a good choice. If large enough, you may only need to clean it once per year.

    The downside of a cartridge filter is they are a lot more hassle to clear an algae infested pool as they will clog quickly. Keep the water balanced and clear and you will not have that problem.

    Posted from my Droid with Tapatalk ... sorry if my response is short
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
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    MattM's Avatar
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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    Just as a datapoint, we put in a quad de 100 for our 24K gallon pool. The pool is covered which removes most debris from entering it. The DE filter handles the rest and we find the water sparkingly clean and most visitors comment on how clean the pool is compared to others. The filter only needs to be cleaned and DE replaced once a year since it is oversized and I have someone else handle that and some other once/year events. We were convinced to go with the DE based on the fact that our family is sensitive to allergies and we wanted to have cleaner water. We've never had to backwash..the quad models from pentair remove nearly all the need for it and our pool builder claimed that pump efficiency was more important than the slight need we might have to ever backwash. We do run our pump longer at lower speeds except for when solar heating is active.
    24K gallon inground gunite/pebble sheen pool, 34'x16' 4-7.5ft deep, 750sq ft solar, pentair ultratemp, intelliflow vs+, ic60, intellichem w/ acid pump, quad de 100, intellibright 5g, intellitouch i5-3s with Screenlogic2, 3" primary piping - 2.5" at equip pad, auto switched deep heating and main returns, automatic safety cover w/ electronic lock and embedded recessed undertrack, sealed stamped concrete deck, dolphin deluxe 5, started up December 2011.

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    BoDarville's Avatar
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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    thejetsunss:

    My opinion (and I suspect that of most people) is that of the three most popular types of filters (sand, DE, and cartridge) the sand filter is the one with the lowest overall maintenance. The tradeoff is that the specs for sand filters typically do not filter down to as low a micron level as DE or cartridge. However, a sand filter will work absolutely fine in most cases. We just had a big Super Bowl party and I received numerous comments that my pool was the cleanest one they had ever seen and I use a sand filter. Both sand and DE filters do require periodic backwashing which does consume water. IMHO, I view that as a plus since periodically replacing 100-200 gallons or so of pool water with fresh water after a good backwash helps mitigate (albeit to a small degree) any rise in CYA from my occasional use of pucks when the pool is unattended for more than a few days.

    Regardless of what type of filter you choose, I would focus primarily on basic pool maintenance such as maintaining the FC, pH, TA, CH, and CYA within the recommended parameters. This goes a long way towards obtaining crystal clear water. If these basics are not managed properly, problems will result no matter which type of filter you use.

    Another consideration is that DE is hazardous to breathe and several municipalities prohibit or regulate its disposal (including into the sewer system from backwashing). I would check into that as well.
    Gold Supporter, TFP Lifetime Supporter, 26,680 gal Plaster IGP 3.5 - 10' depth / Attached Waterfall Spa, Manually Chlorinated, Triton Sand Filter, 1.5 HP * 1.1 SF = 1.65 SFHP 1-speed Pentair WhisperFlo WF-26 Pump, 400K BTU NG Teledyne Laars Series One Heater, Polaris 360, Test Kit Comparison, Chlorine/CYA Chart, SLAMing Your Pool, OCLT
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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    Sand Filter hands down for ease of use, maintenance, and cost. If you want better filtration, substitute the actual sand for a product called ZEOlite.
    PremierPoolProducts.com
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    We have had quite a few reports of problems about ZeoLite. Even though it works wonderfully when it works, it has too high a chance to cause problems so we do not recommend it.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Is a DE filter worth the extra money?

    Went with DE. Thanks for all the responses. Waiting for permits!
    UNDER CONSTRUCTION - 16x28' Freeform Pool with sunshelf, 3.5'-5.5' depth;
    7' Spa raised 18", 6 jets alternating heights, Flagstone on raised beam
    Stonescapes mini pebble finish, Tropical Blue; Stonelock Artistic Pavers; Bronze aluminum screen enclosure
    Sta-Rite Intelliflo 3HP VS Pump and DE Filter, SWG, 400K BTU Gas Heater, Globrite LED Lights
    Easy Touch Automation with Screenlogic smartphone interface[/b]

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