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Thread: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

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    Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    I was shopping at our local Lowes store and saw that instead of DE, they had a product called Pearlite. On the package it said it replaced DE scoop for scoop. One selling point was it said that it cleaned off of the grids easier than DE. At roughly $1 per pound, I wondered if this was an economical alternative. Has anyone tried this product?
    Scott
    1) 24000 gal
    2) DE filter
    3) IG
    4) plaster
    5) 1 hp

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    Don't know much about it apart from the fact it's Perlite not Pearlite which is totally different, but is it hard enough to withstand the mechanical stresses of a pool filter? Being promoted as a replacement for DE indicates very regular changing, good for the manufacturers.

    My concern is the amount of free silica you could intoduce into the pool as the micro structure shown here look pretty fragile.
    http://www.perlite.org/perlite_info/...lite_Works.pdf

    Even the trade association aren't say that much and they dont usually miss a trick. Like some zeolites sold round the world that also are not hard enough and turn to mush in pressure filters.

    Probably good as kitty litter though.

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    That was my thought. I was just needing some confirmation. Thanks!
    Scott
    1) 24000 gal
    2) DE filter
    3) IG
    4) plaster
    5) 1 hp

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    Aquaperl claims to be 100% crystalline silica free. 12 lbs Aquaperl=25 lbs

    http://www.doheny.com/catalog/produc..._store=default

    From another site that sells it:

    Aqua Perl is a unique alternative to D.E. or cellulose (paper pulp) media, that’s 100% crystalline silica free and is volcanic in origin. It takes half the Aqua Perl to do what D.E. does (a ½ lb of Aqua Perl equals 1 lb of D.E.). And there’s no complicated converting –the specially designed Aqua Perl scoop lets you match the amount of D.E. you used to use - “scoop-for-scoop”.

    Won’t attract oil by-products, for longer filter cycles
    Cost-Effective
    Easy to Use!


    http://www.poolproducts.com/SPP/prod...family_id=2429

    After I use up the cellulose I have I'm going to give Aquaperl a try in my Quad 80. I'm having issues with the cellulose releasing from the Quad cartridges when backwashing. Quads use cartridges rather than grids. I think I found the reason, though, other than the immense amounts of clay and chalk powder. I read somewhere this morning that all "extra" pool chems, other than the basic, can cause the cellulose to hold more firmly to the cartridge fabric. The first few weeks I was filtering out suspended calcium (it took two weeks) along with the clay/chalk powder that blows into my pool daily. In addition I put in a start up dose of HTH sequestrate, even though there should have been some in there. The article I was reading said that sequestrates can clog up the filter faster making it harder to get the stuff off with just a backwash instead of a hose cleaning and soaking. Cartridges have been soaking in auto dishwasher solution all night. I'm going out now to rinse and reinstall.

    I have always had to backwash a lot due to our powder but having to backwash more since I started using the sequestrate after AA treatment last fall. That was with my DE 36 sq ft and my new Quad 80 sq ft. The cellulose does filter out finer particles so I'll have that experience to compare with the pool water appearance, at night, with light on.

    I switched from DE because I was concerned with the amount of DE that was being backwashed into our already dusty environment; the amounts of silica.

    So I'll keep all updated on the Perlite once I start using it in next week or two.

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    Although it maybe silica free (doubtful as its volcanic) it is obsidan glass and very fragile looking structure so could still be dangerous if the structure breaks up with the force of the water. It's still mined so what happens to it when it's finished with?
    Have you thought of using recycled glass, I can't vouch for the quality of the US product compared to AFM from Dryden Aqua, but when that's finished with whenever that is, it goes straight into the recycled glass bin and is turned into something else.

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    I have been using AquaPerl instead of DE for two years (starting third). It lasts me the whole season (as did D.E) so I am still on original bag. It seems to work just as well and actually seems to leave the grids more completely when I backwash at closing time than did D.E. (I clean my filter myself). If there is a downside, I haven't figured it out yet. Pool is crystal clear with a minimum of particulate in the light beam at night. And I only run 4 hrs/day (1 turnover) due to oversized pump/plumbing and really bare bones layout with short runs and low bather load.
    Current: 28,000G 18'x36' I/G AnthonySylvan Plaster; Waterway 60 sq.ft. DE Filter; 1.0hp x 1.65 SF Two-Speed (B2982) WhisperFlo; 2004-Present
    Previous: 40,000G 20'x40' I/G Koven unlined WWII salvage 5/8" marine steel; Lomart Stainless Sand Filter; 3/4hp Hayward SuperPump; 1946-2003 (managed by me from about 1964)
    Ancient Taylor K-2000, upgraded with Taylor CH, TA, and FAS-DPD, and TFT CYA tests.

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    I've just ordered some Aqua Pearl. Backwashing is just not doing it with my Quad 80, cellulose, and our "cementous" dust. Every 10 days, if I want to get to clean filter psi, I have to take the lid off filter and hose with brass concentrator on end of hose. Day before yesterday I did a series of backwashes, rinses, opening filter drain to let water escape out bottom fast, repeated several times. Use a lot of pool water. Filter psi is almost as low as, open and clean, but VF pump is running at higher rpms for same flow rate, so it obviously didn't get all the cellulose released.

    So I'm going to try the Aqua Pearl to see if it will maybe release from the cartridges better. Will report back.

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    Hi gg=alice,
    Can you please give us an update on how you like the Aqua Pearl as compared to the cellulose?
    Thanks, Tom
    IG 11,000 gallon 14'x30' Freeform Gunite Pool w/ 8' Spillover Spa, Pebble Fina Bella Blue Plaster, Pentair IntelliFlo VS Pump, Quad 80 w/ Fiber Clear Filter, Mastertemp 400HD Heater, IntelliTouch i5+3 w/ ScreenLogic App Controller, IntelliChlor IC40 Salt Cell, IntelliChem PH & ORP Controller w/ Acid Dispenser, IntelliBrite 5g Color Lights, Infusion Venturi Returns

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    bump

    Alice, any update?
    15,600 Gallon, 16' x 32' In-Ground Vinyl Pool
    Pentair VS 3050 pump, Quad DE 60 filter and SunTouch controller
    8 gallon Liquidator, Aquatherm EcoSun Solar Panels, 2 wheel ThePoolCleaner

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    Pearlite is good economically but it does not have the same coverage on filter grids that the D.E. does. I saw a demonstration at a swimming pool convention that showed the coverage on the grids of each one and the D.E. coated the grids much better, thereby giving the pool a greater surface to filter the water through.

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    Re: Using Pearlite instead of D.E.?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pacifica
    Pearlite is good economically but it does not have the same coverage on filter grids that the D.E. does. I saw a demonstration at a swimming pool convention that showed the coverage on the grids of each one and the D.E. coated the grids much better, thereby giving the pool a greater surface to filter the water through.
    I always add two extra scoops of AquaPerl to any size filter.

    I have yet to ever have a customer complain about any residue that comes back after cleaning a filter as with D.E.

    Perlite filters down to 4 microns as D.E. so there's no CONS as far as I have seen in the past 6 years using it. Also it's much lighter when removing a dirty 60" for sure.
    Swimming Pool & Spa Maintenance, Service and Installation Technician
    "If It Ain't Broke, Keep Fixing It Until It Is!"

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