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Thread: DE Seperator tank opinions requested

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    DE Seperator tank opinions requested

    So I'm just getting started with pool ownership and doing a lot of learning thanks to this site, but I've not found much on DE Separator tanks. We just recently bought a house that has an IG pool (20k gal), DE filter, Polaris w/booster, and a nameless stainless steel tank that I've just recently learned was a separator tank.

    Are these just not used very often nowadays? A pool repair service tech said he usually takes more of them out than he puts in. I can't find much on the 'net or in this forum on them other than your basic installation and user manuals for the usual manufacturers (Hayward, Pentair, etc). Being on well water I'm pretty interested in learning more, so I don't have to lose water each time I backwash. One thing the manuals I have read from the 'net don't tell you is what to expect when running backwash through them... i.e. what kind of noises are produced, what to watch out for, etc. It definitely looks to operate under pressure... but is that air pressure with just a little water moving through it, or does the whole tank fill with water as it moves through?

    Also the previous owner didn't seem to use it as all the valves and such were set (when I took over maintenance) to bypass it and go straight out the the blue waste hose instead. I'm still too chicken to change that when backwashing. It seems to be in good condition, no rips in the bag on the inside and there's a little bit of DE left from the last time the tank was used... is there something I should be checking out before attempting to use it though?
    30k gallons, Pentair FNS90 DE Filter, IG, plaster, Pentair single speed WhisperFlo pump, Polaris 280 w/ booster pump

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    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Silver Spring, MD

    Re: DE Seperator tank opinions requested

    Seperator tanks are annoying to use, but are basically the only way to prevent escape of the DE into the environment. They are only required in a couple of areas, and if not required no one uses them.
    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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    TFP Guide

    chiefwej's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

    Re: DE Seperator tank opinions requested

    I have one in my system, it catches most but not all of the waste DE or cellulose fiber when back flushing. I do use it when back flushing, but it isn't nearly effective enough to allow saving water by back flushing with water returning to the pool. Way too much of the filter media gets through the separation tank filter bag.
    Tucson, AZ
    16x36 rectangular (19k) Pebble Tec play pool/spa, Pentair Intelliflo VS 011018, Super II 2hp (spa), Aqua Rite T-15 SWG, Pro Grid 60 DE, Hayward H400 & Heliocol Solar heating, A&A infloor system, fill water w/high CH and TA, 50 ppm borates,TF-100 test kit

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