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Thread: Best filter for use with hard water?

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    Best filter for use with hard water?

    I am building a 40K gallon IG plaster pool and wrestling with the filter choice. I am in the Austin, Texas region with fairly hard water. I was leaning toward DE but a neighbor is telling me that he cleans his DE filter once a week because if he doesn't the calcium build-up is ridiculous. I searched the posts but could not find any connection between filter selection and hard water. It has been such a problem that he has been adding softened water to the pool!!!!

    Has anyone found a particular type of filter to be better at handling hard water?

    Thanks,
    Light grey plaster, stone coping, 38K gallon Roman shaped pool with a shallow end beach, table and bar stools, deep end bench and waterfall (Intelliflo 4X160). Taylor K-2006, Pentair 320 chlorinator, Intelliflow VF, Quad DE 100. 4 ColorLogics, 3 skimmers, 14 wall returns, 13 floor returns, TurboTwister slide, autofill and miles of pvc.

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Nope,

    Water hardness cannot be filtered out. It only shows itself in a pool when your water balance is off, usually in more than just calcium.

    The type of filter is irrelevant.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  3. Back To Top    #3

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    I'm just north of Austin and have a DE filter. During the summer I usually backwash the filter and dump in fresh DE every 7 to 10 days. It's MUCH easier than pulling out cartridges, washing them and then putting them back into their housing. DE does a good job of removing dead algae and also catches the pollen, dust, mold, and other stuff that's in the air around here. As stated above, calcium doesn't clog the filter, but the other stuff does. I could go longer between changes, but I like to really keep the water flowing well through my pool. This past winter I went several months without needing to backwash the filter at all. The pressure remained steady, much to my surprise, so I just left it alone.

    "Cleaning" a DE filter involves turning the pump off and on a few times, while moving the lever on the backwash valve between pump runs. I then dump a few pounds of DE into a 5 gallon bucket of pool water and pour it slowly into the skimmer. I just cleaned it this evening, just before supper and it took about 15 minutes. 8)
    26,000 Gallon Gunnite IGP
    2 HP Challenger High Head Pump
    60sf Nautilus DE filter
    Polaris 280

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Calcium buildup in the filter is caused by bad chemistry, not a problem (or advantage) of the filter.
    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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    mas985's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarryH3
    It's MUCH easier than pulling out cartridges, washing them and then putting them back into their housing.
    I never found it to be much of a problem. I only clean my filter twice a year and and on a bad day that takes me about an hour for all four filters. So, I spend about 2 hours per year cleaning my cartridge filters. It sounds as though you may be spending a lot more time then that on cleaning your DE filter.

    An oversized filter makes all of the difference. An oversized DE filter would probably need less cleaning as well.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump and Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, 1/2 HP 2sp pump, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater, ThePoolCleaner

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    You must have some pretty clean air around there. My sister has filter cartridges on her pool (about a mile from me) and it seems like they're cleaning them way more than twice per year. My BIL spends a lot of time in the backyard with the garden hose. We get more pollen here than anywhere else that I've ever lived. Oak, Cedar, Elm, etc. It seems like there is something spewing **** into the air nearly year round.
    26,000 Gallon Gunnite IGP
    2 HP Challenger High Head Pump
    60sf Nautilus DE filter
    Polaris 280

  7. Back To Top    #7
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Skimmer socks cut down on filter cleaning significantly, though they do allow you to get really familiar with skimmer sock cleaning (which is much simpler but also much more frequent).
    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

  8. Back To Top    #8
    mas985's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarryH3
    You must have some pretty clean air around there. My sister has filter cartridges on her pool (about a mile from me) and it seems like they're cleaning them way more than twice per year. My BIL spends a lot of time in the backyard with the garden hose. We get more pollen here than anywhere else that I've ever lived. Oak, Cedar, Elm, etc. It seems like there is something spewing **** into the air nearly year round.
    Again, it depends on the size of filter you get. I oversized mine specifically so I wouldn't need to clean it very often. And no, the air is not very clean. I have several large trees that dump a ton of pollen into the pool. If you size the cartridge filter correctly, it should not need cleaning more than a couple of times a year.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump and Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, 1/2 HP 2sp pump, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater, ThePoolCleaner

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    I live in RR and use a sand filter. I find it works quite well and only backwash once a month during the swim season. Personally I'd never own a cartridge filter, but that's just my preference, I hate cleaning them.
    15,500 gal, inground gunite pool with 7 ft spa, 2 speed pump 2hp/.33hp, 3/4 hp booster pump, Intermatic P1353 timer, AutoPilot SC-48, Sand filter with ZeoBest, Heater, that I never use . . .

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    ivyleager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovingHDTV
    I live in RR and use a sand filter. I find it works quite well and only backwash once a month during the swim season. Personally I'd never own a cartridge filter, but that's just my preference, I hate cleaning them.
    Agreed! I hae a sand filter and it's probably the most user friendly one of the bunch. My water sparkles! I also have hard water. Water softener for inside water, but the outside tap is straight from the well. I have no issues with calcium deposits.

    CaryB
    CaryB
    36 x 18 IG vinyl, 25K, 1 HP pump, sand filter
    1 skimmer, 2 returns, no main drain
    Old school: PoolSolutions test kit

  11. Back To Top    #11

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    follow-up to filter question

    thanks everyone,

    Since my region does have a lot of pollen and dust as my fellow Texan pointed out, I think the smart combination may be the largest DE filter I can get (I guess the Pentair Quad Cartridge DE100) and using skimmer socks. That should cut down my filter maintenance to the minimum.

    Based on your replies it sounds like my neighbor's water chemistry is off and this is the cause of what he is reporting as "calcium buildup" in his filter.

    One last note of interest. Although I frequently read about the cleaning power of different filters discussed on the forum I have yet to see a pool in person (DE filter or otherwise) that has the "crystal clear water" I see others talk about on the forum. Does anybody actually have crystal clear water? I am guessing that the pools I see must have poor water chemistry or not enough water turnover; or both.
    Light grey plaster, stone coping, 38K gallon Roman shaped pool with a shallow end beach, table and bar stools, deep end bench and waterfall (Intelliflo 4X160). Taylor K-2006, Pentair 320 chlorinator, Intelliflow VF, Quad DE 100. 4 ColorLogics, 3 skimmers, 14 wall returns, 13 floor returns, TurboTwister slide, autofill and miles of pvc.

  12. Back To Top    #12
    ivyleager's Avatar
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    My pool water looks like this all the time. Well, unless we have pool party, then there are about 20 people in the pool!!

    CaryB
    36 x 18 IG vinyl, 25K, 1 HP pump, sand filter
    1 skimmer, 2 returns, no main drain
    Old school: PoolSolutions test kit

  13. Back To Top    #13
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    We have a sand filter and when we add a little DE to the filter the water goes from very clear to amazingly/crystal clear.
    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

  14. Back To Top    #14

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    I have a Hayward Perflex EC75A for my ~30,000Gal IG. My water is amazingly clear and 'sparkles' to the point that it's almost impossible to vacuum it when the sun is shining on it.

    BTW, you mentioned that you are building an IG Plaster pool. FYI, you NEED hard water with this type of pool to keep the water from dissolving your plaster. As everyone else said, this is irrelevant to filter choice.

    Another thing I might add: DE filters can be a bit of a pain if you are trying to filter a ton of **** out of your pool. I recently turned my pool brown while trying to fill it because my well pump started sucking up dirt. I had to backwash and replace my DE 4 times (in addition to bumping the filter once an hour) to get my water back to sparkling. This should be a rare occurance though.
    ~30000 GAL In-Ground 26'x50' Kidney Shaped Pool
    Hayward EC-75 DE Filter w/1.5HP Hayward SuperPump
    daily user of JasonLion's Poolcalculator
    (12) 2x10 SunGrabber Solar Panels...now if only there was some sun to shine on them!

  15. Back To Top    #15

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    Re: follow-up to filter question

    Quote Originally Posted by carlos31
    Does anybody actually have crystal clear water?
    I do! Mine looks like I filled it with bottled water.

    When we first moved in we could barely keep algae at bay. Then I learned about CYA... Ours was absurdly high so I drained and filled the pool with fresh water last spring. Oddly enough, the city water actually had a somewhat green tint to it. Once the pool had enough water so that I could fire up the filter the water turned crystal clear within 24 hours. It's been crystal clear ever since. It's amazing what keeping the chemistry correct can do for your pool!
    26,000 Gallon Gunnite IGP
    2 HP Challenger High Head Pump
    60sf Nautilus DE filter
    Polaris 280

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    Re: follow-up to filter question

    Quote Originally Posted by carlos31

    One last note of interest. Although I frequently read about the cleaning power of different filters discussed on the forum I have yet to see a pool in person (DE filter or otherwise) that has the "crystal clear water" I see others talk about on the forum. Does anybody actually have crystal clear water? I am guessing that the pools I see must have poor water chemistry or not enough water turnover; or both.
    Here are some pics of my pool (with a cartridge filter). You tell me if anyone really has 'crystal clear water'.

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