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Thread: Back Flushing Cartridge Filter Possible?

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    Back Flushing Cartridge Filter Possible?

    I was wondering if anyone's ever tried back flushing a cartridge filter.

    I have a Hayward cartridge filter system and have been hosing the filter down once a day at pool opening to clean out the pond. The Hayward filter enclosure wasn't specifically designed for back flushing, I'm sure, but if I rigged up the pump to pump pool water in through the filter's output port and out the filter's input port then out to drain, shouldn't this work to back flush the cartridge filter in the enclosure?

    There's been no mention of this method of cartridge filter cleaning, but isn't this like blowing air in the reverse direction of your car air filter to clean out the filter?

    Thanks,
    Khoa
    29k gallon IG, Hayward Super II pump with 2 speed motor, Cartridge filter, San Jose, CA

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    May 2007
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    Re: Back Flushing Cartridge Filter Possible?

    Usually backwashing a cartridge filter will tear the cartridge fabric and destroy the cartridge. The water pressure inside a filter is rather high. The cartridge is only designed to be able to handle that pressure with the water moving in the normal direction.
    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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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    May 2007
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    Re: Back Flushing Cartridge Filter Possible?

    That would take some rigging/plumbing, for sure. I don't know how well it would work, either. The surface of the filter element is pretty rough, so the algae that gets lodged in it might not come loose all that well if the water was reversed. Heck, I have a hard time getting some stuff to turn loose when hitting it with a hard stream of water!

    Personally, before I went to all that work/effort, I'd just buy a sand filter so I could backflush at my every whim and desire.

    edit: Yeah, what Jason said, too...
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    Re: Back Flushing Cartridge Filter Possible?

    So to summarize, even if reverse flushing a cartridge filter:
    a) got the filter cartridge as clean as hosing it down (unlikely)
    b) doesn't tear the filter cartridge on repeated use (unlikely)
    c) doesn't adversely affect/bypass internal pressure safety release valves (if any)
    it would cost roughly $200 in parts to implement.

    A sand filter would run for roughly $400 and does exactly the same thing without all the caveats.

    A sand filter is in my future the next time I upgrade the system.

    Thank you, gentlemen. I'm off to hosing down my cartridge filter now.

    Khoa
    29k gallon IG, Hayward Super II pump with 2 speed motor, Cartridge filter, San Jose, CA

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    Guest

    Re: Back Flushing Cartridge Filter Possible?

    realize that a sand filter won't filter as fine a particle as a cart can

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