After 7 years, I've replaced my 4 cartridges in my filter (I could have gone longer, but the straps were starting to break and I figured I had a good run with these cartridges). The replacement cartridges for my Jandy CL340 were from Unicel® and they had instructions with them that I thought were helpful and consistent with what we've been telling people -- note the specific instructions for Baquacil/Biguande as well.
Cartridge Cleaning Instructions for Chlorine Users
When should a cartridge element be cleaned?
For swimming pools, clean the cartridge when filter canister pressure reaches 8 PSI above the initial system or new cartridge starting pressure. For spas, establish a routine cartridge cleaning schedule based on the amount of spa usage. If Baquacil® is used as a sanitizer, the filter element must be cleaned with Baqua Clean® before any cartridge cleaner is used (Step 4). Please refer to "Cartridge Cleaning Supplement for Baquacil® Users."
What is the procedure to clean my cartridge?
- Remove the cartridge from the filter housing following the manufacturer's instructions.
- Use a garden hose with a straight flow nozzle to wash down the filter element. Work from the top down, holding the nozzle at a 45 degree angle, and wash all the pleats with emphasis between pleats.
- Rinse until all dirt and debris are gone.
- For all spa cartridges and elements used in swimming pools where perspiration, suntan lotions, and other oils are present, soak the element for at least on hour (overnight is most effective) in (1) a commercial filter cleaner; or (2) one cup trisodium phosphate (TSP) to five gallons water; or (3) one cup dishwasher detergent to five gallons of water.
- Rinse the cartridge again to remove oils and cleaning solution.
- If the filter has a coating of alage, calcium carbonate (residue from calcium hypochlorite), iron, or other minerals, soak the cartridge in a solution of one part muriatic acid to twenty parts water until all bubbling stops. WARNING: Failure to remove all oils and cleaning solution before acid soaking will result in a permanent restriction of water flow and cause premature cartridge failure.
- Rinse the cartridge clean and reassemble housing.
NOTE: Unicel does not recommend the use of diatomaceous earth (DE) with cartridge filters. DE particles will become trapped in the body of the media and shorten cartridge life. If desired, a cellulose fiber (synthetic DE) can be used in moderation.
Cartridge Cleaning Supplement for Biguanide Users
What should I know about cleaning my cartridge element if I use a biguanide system such as Leisure time FreeTM or Baquacil®?
Unlike chlorine which oxidizes the bacteria in the water, the active ingredient in biguanide systems, polyhexamethylene biguanide (PHMB), destroys the bacterial cells. PHMB locates and binds to the bacterial surfaces, and then attacks the outer bacterial wall. Once this wall has been compromised, the inner cell membrane (the cytoplasmic membrane) is destroyed. This destruction allows the cell contents to disperse into their surroundings where they are further broken down into their elemental parts by a non-chlorine oxidizer such as Leisure Time BoostTM or Baqua Shock®.
In addition, Leisure Time BoostTM and Baqua Shock® are mild coagulants which combine bacterial cells and other small particles in the environment into particles large enough to be trapped by the filter. The resulting deposit is a gray sticky film on the media which can only be removed with Leisure Time Filter CleanTM or Baqua Clean®. If trisodium phosphate (TSP) or any TSP type cleaner is used prior to stripping the film, the cleaner and the gray film will combine to form a gum-like substance. Once this occurs, the substance cannot be removed from the media and the filter cartridge must be replaced.
WARNING: Follow all manufacturer's instructions, warnings and cautions when using Leisure Time FreeTM or Baquacil® products.
Leisure Time® and Leisure Time FreeTM are registered trademarks of Advantis Technologies, Inc.