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Thread: Sand Filter

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    reindeerboy's Avatar
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    Sand Filter

    Chad,

    I don't want to get the thread off-topic but a properly operating filter of sand, DE or a cartridge will all capture enough of the dirt, etc. to keep a pool absolutely crystal clear.

    If a filter is blowing back visible "junk" into the pool, there is something wrong with the filter.

    We really ought to start another thread in "pool equipment" if there's more discussion on filters but I wanted to bring up this very common subject.

    End of hi-jack



    _________________
    Dave S.







    OK, Dave. I started a new thread.

    I have come to the conclusion that you are exactly correct. My pool is crystal clear, but I feel that I may have a cracked lateral as once in a while, I get sand/dirt back into the pool.

    I do plan to replace the sand and laterals next spring and finish out this year with what I have. It works great for the time being and only does this when I backwash the pool.

    Plus I think the sand is starting to deteriate as some sand is blowing back into the pool.

    I plan to go to Zeobrite with new laterals next year. Any comment on using Zeobrite? I have heard all kinds of things, but it says it should last 5-8 years easily without having to change anything?

    What are your thoughts on that one?

    Thanks again!
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

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    searayboater's Avatar
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    Re: Sand Filter

    I've heard the zeobrite is messy when first using it and it sometimes clouds the water if it isn't initially backwashed enough.
    18' AG Pool, 6900 gallons, 55 sq. ft. Hayward Easy Clear Cartridge Filter, 1hp Power Flow LX Pump, North Texas

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Interesting. I have sand now and really do like just using plain sand as it did take a bit longer to filter out the media in the spring, but where we live, you cannot swim for 3 weeks after you start it up anyway, so maybe I will change my mind on that and just use regular sand filter media and new laterals?

    Any other opinions from the "moderators"?
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

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    Re: Sand Filter

    I have had such good luck with sand that I would be hard pressed to consider changing. It's the inital sand that was put in 7 years ago and has been bulletproof. I have never seen any blowback and have never added any sand to the filter.

    Some of my good luck might well have to do with the size of my filter. It's a big dude holding 925 lbs of sand so there is seldom any "strain" on it. It backwashes nicely and, while a little slow to rinse clean (about 90 seconds) I simply can't complain.

    Zeobrite hasn't really proven to be demonstrably superior by the end user I don't think. Very few foloks report any remarkable improvement in their filtering when using zeobrite.

    If you're getting sand in the pool, the most common cause, again, is a broken or torn lateral. Overfilling the filter might result in the same thing....I'm not sure. Generally, about 2/3 full is where most sand filters should be. Rarely, folks report a broken center pipe or incorrect reassemble of the center pipe and that will definitely cause blowback.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Appreciate the information Dave.

    I agree. I have a 500 pound Sand filter and about the only thing that I can see wrong is a small crack in the lateral I think. Sand fill looks fine when I peaked in there so any blowback is very very minor in my case.

    The reason I mention Zeo is of course the pool place suggested it. Now from what I have read, that would make sense if they are trying to sell it to me.

    That is why I use you guys. Much more consistant information with less cost and pain involved.

    I think I will just keep it simple and replace the laterals and put new sand in there next spring. For this year, we only have about a month to 5 weeks left in the season, and thus far the pool has been fine. Water clarity is awesome, thanks to BBB and your test kit!

    Again, thanks so much for the great advice and factual information so that we as consumers can make the correct informed decisions.
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Chad, I think you've got the right idea on pool ownership

    I would d suggest you think about replacing the first 100 lbs of sand you pour into the filter with pea gravel. You've got all winter to decide if you want to do that and can research why I recommend it
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Ted,

    That is very interesting. I did read many different opinions including the PB opionion, and various ones from PB repairman. I dont think there is a direct white/black answer to this as it is more what each pool owner is comfortable in doing.

    I will take some more time to research more about this and decide what I plan to do this winter.

    I do like the idea of adding enough pea gravel to cover the laters for added protection as I do agree that it does help keep the sand away from the laters and thus the majority of the cleaning should occur in the upper part of my Hayward S310S 500 lb sand filter? Does that seem to make sense? Common sense to me is trying to shine through here, but again, I am no engineer on how sand/pea gravel work in a filter?

    I have had this pool a year now and have learned so much from everything I have read. This is all very interesting and I will continue to learn more and more.

    Thank goodness the previous 2 owners took good care of the pool as everything works really well. I did find a small tear in a seal from the pump to the pipe going up to the multiport that is leaking a bit of water, thus causing a bit of air to rush in and a few bubbles to occur. I plan to unthread it and put a bead of silicone caulking around the threads next spring to help seal that up as well.

    I wondered about adding DE to the sand media on the top, but question that one. I have never done it nor needed to do it as the filter seems to run & clean the water very well. Maybe as the sand media gets a bit older, then I would consider adding DE to the filter media.

    Many great discussions.

    Thanks to everyone who has offered their opinions. I do value each and every one of them.
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

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    Re: Sand Filter

    I plan to unthread it and put a bead of silicone caulking around the threads next spring to help seal that up as well.
    Hi, Chad,

    Use pipe thread sealant...not silicone caulk. The caulk will make it very tough to unscrew it.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Gotcha Dave. I have some of that as well so great. I will use that as I am winterizing her up late September.

    Thanks a bunch!
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

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    Re: Sand Filter

    I use this
    18' AG Pool, 6900 gallons, 55 sq. ft. Hayward Easy Clear Cartridge Filter, 1hp Power Flow LX Pump, North Texas

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Thanks. I probably will order some of that stuff. I read up on it a bit and I did seem to like the product. Does it work well? I would assume it would.
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

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    Re: Sand Filter

    The pipe sealant can be purchased from any plumbing supply, Lowes, Home Depot.
    IG 18x36 oval vinyl, Spill over spa, Northstar 2hp-2spd, 2.5" piping, S310T 500lb Sand filter, 400k gas heater, AutoPilot SWCG
    http://www.tftestkits.net/

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Gotcha. Thanks
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Just wanted to comment regarding using DE with a sand filter.

    Somewhere on this site, someone said to add about a cup of DE after each backwash. This extra effort was to "supposed" to make the pool water crystal clear.

    Well, once again, the wisdom of people posting on this site is outstanding. By the second week, my pool water was "shimmery" clear (looking into) and underwater. I have been using this process for about five weeks and will continue to do so. One observation is that back washing takes much less time (and water).

    SWG = Pool Pilot

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Reindeerboy,

    One thing I regret is that my sand filters seems to be average size.
    If i knew any better I would have bigger ones. Well, I never care back then what the PB put in and sadly never knew Trouble Free Pool Academny.. until after a year I had the pool.

    Anyhow I use Zelbrite which is zeolite. There are so many kinds of zeolites that do different things...by the 100s, including man made ones. As far as I did my homework, my type of zeolite is natural and the type that does the ammonia exchange. This is what a pool need, because its like having ammonia remover. If my understanding of the science is correct, for every ammonia caught by the zelbrite, salt/sodium is given out, hence the name ion-exchange. So regeneration is required to dump that ammonia by soaking with 10% salt mix for 24 hours and tripple backwash/rinse. The same drill if one house with well water uses water softener that uses ion exchange resin. So the calcium get exchanged with salt, sort of. I am no expert but that's what the technical literature from the manufacturer of the resin wrote.

    Quality of natural zeolite varies from place to place, same like coal. I don't know if my Aussie mined zeolite is any better or worse than say from a US mined source.

    Since my zelbrite/zeolite is like a sponge it is said to have 3 micron filtration capability, unlike sand which is not porous. However since the way zeolite and sand is stack up like that, we do get the typical method how sand does its filtration.
    So in the end the actual filter retaining efficiency using zelbrite is still 80%, meaning only 80% of whatever rated size dirt will be caught but 20% will go thru in a single pass. A sand is said to have no better than 50 microns filtration, what its retaining efficiency %, I don't know but I suppose its not very far from 80% too since sand are stacked like zeolite.
    If the waterflow is slower or the sand filter is huge, I am sure its going to be good for the user, the same advantage should apply to zeolite.

    I wash the zelbrite properly before I use them in the sand filter. During processing they do contain lots of fine dust within the packaging.

    Now if you ask me is Zelbrite ( or Zeobrite if spec is the same ) worth the money ?
    I would say yes...a 100% yes, as long as you know how to maintain it and don't expect magic out of it. The ammonia removal and the 3 micron capability even at only 80% retaining efficiency is already worth the money. In my country it cost US$ 1.6 or so per 2.2 pounds before discount, bigger amount less $$ for sure. By how much I don't know. I imported my Zelbrite direct from Australia thru a local pool shop before anyone represent that brand in my country. Cost me much more than that, like 70% more money because the pool store that I asked to import, I gave him 25% profit for his work and it was only a small order, so I guess no bulk discount.

    Why I don't like sand or the way the zeolite are stacked up in a sand filter housing is that 20% that will pass thru. However, we pool owners will have trouble if our filtration retaining efficiency is at 99.9% , since clogging will occur fast. Since a pool runs on principle of multiple pass over a period of time, we got what we need. In a car fuel system scenario with diesel common rail high pressure injection, its a single pass filtration requirement that matters because that is what the fine injector tip must receive...super clean fuel.

    And then there is absolute rating and nominal ratings for filters for a given waterflow. This makes a big difference. I believe the pool industry will stick to nominal ratings, since its not that stringent and easier plus cheaper to make. Until today I can't get any literature on my cartidge filter retaining efficiency on the net. I posted the question but no one seems to know.
    One thing I know, Hayward or Pentair, the OEM for the cartridge filter is the same. One thing I would want to remind cartridge filter user, it does not like Sun Block oil. A very reliable source told me that the cartridge filter material will get damaged by that oil. I don't know how but that's what he warned me.

    The reason I use cartridge downstream fo my sand is because of that 20% that will pass thru from the sand/zeolite filter. Without a sand upstream, my cartridge will clog fast. Now without bather load and being an outdoor pool and in the center of the city, my cartdrige needs cleaning ( 5psi increase ) at least every 10-14 days. I stick to 5 psi because above that I loose waterflow to the extend I am not happy about it. The flowmeter showed that.

    The other reason I use cartridge is that double filtration is better if final clarity is what I want to achieve. If I floc my pool, the worth of the cartridge is obvious, it does not allow the fine dirt to come back to the pool. This I can't do with sand/zelbrite alone. If you think you can't see a 50 micron dirt, try to collect enough of it and dump that in your pool, tell me if you can see that or not...you will see it. Calcium clouding is a good example, its so small your filters can't really "catch" it but you can see it right ...to the extend of ******* us off.

    I don't want a DE because they don't sell the DE powder here...ha ha ha, what a joke. I will be enslaved by that requirement. Closest import will be Singapore and I bet the custom will strip search me for bringing what they think could be "Colombian Powder"... everytime I fly in from Singapore.

    Water clarity is a personal thing. If your pool is colored and you do not wear a mask while swimming, I mean a real good glass mask not a plastic Speedo goggles, your demand on clarity may not be the same as what I term as maximum clarity that I am trying to achieve in my pool.

    One can say they can see the bottom of their pool of 6 feet deep and they are happy. If I can't see a strand of hair on my white tiled pool at 13 feet deep, I know something is already wrong. A hair test is what I like best. Always one or two strand of hair will fall off from divers in the pool.

    Cheers :P
    35,000 GL pool. In Ground. Concrete with all white ceramic tiles. Outdoor but shaded.
    Approx 36 ft by 15 feet. 2HP Hayward Super Pump, Hayward Sand Filter with Zelbrite ( Zeolite ), Hayward Cartridge Filter, Aquamatic Silver+Copper Ionizer ( suspended use since Oct 2008 ), Prozone Ozonator, 2 gram/hr, Analog Flowmeter on pipe

    Back Up Pump & Filter on trolley, Pentair 1.5HP + Pentair Cartridge Filter, Slime Bag 1 micron Jumbo Size, downstream of Cartridge

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    Re: Sand Filter

    This is how the Australian Zelbrite brand look like. I think the US Zeobrite one is white color yes ?
    Water clarity improved...yes.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    35,000 GL pool. In Ground. Concrete with all white ceramic tiles. Outdoor but shaded.
    Approx 36 ft by 15 feet. 2HP Hayward Super Pump, Hayward Sand Filter with Zelbrite ( Zeolite ), Hayward Cartridge Filter, Aquamatic Silver+Copper Ionizer ( suspended use since Oct 2008 ), Prozone Ozonator, 2 gram/hr, Analog Flowmeter on pipe

    Back Up Pump & Filter on trolley, Pentair 1.5HP + Pentair Cartridge Filter, Slime Bag 1 micron Jumbo Size, downstream of Cartridge

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    Re: Sand Filter

    This is the hair test that I talk of at 13 feet deep.

    I can see much better using my eyes than what the camera can capture. My lens is a cheapo one.
    Its hard to take photo from surface with the water consistently moving by the wind and because of the inlet nozzles, I can't get very good focus, the refraction is driving me nuts.

    I use a small pad lock key to weight down the hair. The hair is a lady fine hair not a thick type.
    See the key rust stain on the pool tile ?
    Attached Images Attached Images
    35,000 GL pool. In Ground. Concrete with all white ceramic tiles. Outdoor but shaded.
    Approx 36 ft by 15 feet. 2HP Hayward Super Pump, Hayward Sand Filter with Zelbrite ( Zeolite ), Hayward Cartridge Filter, Aquamatic Silver+Copper Ionizer ( suspended use since Oct 2008 ), Prozone Ozonator, 2 gram/hr, Analog Flowmeter on pipe

    Back Up Pump & Filter on trolley, Pentair 1.5HP + Pentair Cartridge Filter, Slime Bag 1 micron Jumbo Size, downstream of Cartridge

  18. Back To Top    #18
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    Re: Sand Filter

    HA HA. Oooh thats funny. Very informative SPP.

    Here in North Dakota, either than the springtime when the farmers hit the fields and the winds are pretty high, we do not get too much **** blowing around and the pool does an awesome job with Sand. I love sand because its simple, easy to manage and I just got a promotion at work so my time is going to be limited next year I think.

    My plan is go use what Ted here on the site gave me for a suggestion. I plan to probably use the 100 lbs of pea gravel and the rest in Sand. I plan to put new laterals in as well. Yes, it will take longer in the spring then zeo to clean out your pool, but its so darn cold here in the winters, Im talking 20 below in January, that we cant swim for at lease 3 weeks anyway upon opening our pool. That is plenty time for the filter to clean up whatever is needed in the pool.

    We have a huge filter. Its a 31" 500 pound Hayward S310S sand filter. Its on a 1.5 hp 1 stage pump that moves the water really well. I can get 2 turns on my water every 12 hours. I run it 10-12 hours a day during the hot summer months and it has been crystal clear since June. I rarely have to backwash the filter as since June, the psi has risen only 1psi so I plan to do nothing until we winterize it in late September early October.

    Since using the BBB method, I have awesome water . Pics of my pool are in my sig if you wish to look.

    That is my plan anyway. I plan to have our PB come to do it for me when we open up in the spring to do 2 things at once. That way I dont have to mess with opening it up during tax time here in the states. Too busy to mess with it at where I work. They probably wont like it that I want to use sand as they really tried to push me into the zeo, but I am leaning towards the sand as that is what I am familiar with.

    Again thanks for all the information. I do appreciate it.
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

  19. Back To Top    #19

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    Re: Sand Filter

    Somewhere I read (I can't remember where ) that you should use pea gravel that was for swimming pool filters. I went to two pool places and asked. The looks on their faces was enough to make me laugh. One pool place gave me "No" followed by a you should never put pea gravel in a filter; "It will wreak your filter".

    I went ahead and used the pea gravel from Lowes. When I started the filter, I ran it in rinse for awhile first, then ran it in backwash for awhile than back to rinse for awhile.

    Since I replaced the old filter with a larger one, replaced the pump with a Pentair VF and all 1.5 ince piping in the shed with 2 inch; I have nothing to compare it to.

    The filter works great and I'm happy with it. Clean filter pressure is 7# and I have the pump set up for dirty filter pressure at 25#.

    I also put in a small scoop of DE after each backwash. The local pool store sells BioGuard SparkleUp for $26.99 for a small tub. For DE I use Aqua Perl. I also use Aqua Perl in my DE filter that I run in series with the sand filter after the pool water is clean. Two 12# bags of Aqua Perl cost me $33.98 and will last me two years.

    Like I said; I'm happy with the results.

    Anyhow, just about time to close the pool.
    Hotrod30

    20 X 40 foot vinyl Borates and Salt Pool
    Rolachem Chlorine Feeder
    Hayward 27 inch sand filter with 80 lbs of pea gravel
    Jacuzzi Splash Pak SP55 DE filter in parallel
    Pentair VF3050 pump

  20. Back To Top    #20
    reindeerboy's Avatar
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    Re: Sand Filter

    Interesting. Thanks Hotrod. Gives me some more to think about over the winter when looking at the poolcicle in the back yard.

    I agree with Teds analysis on the peagravel. I think it does add extra protection. Its an idea that is highly talked about, but I see you did it Hotrod and you seem to like it, so maybe I will try it this next spring. May get some weird comments from the PB, but I plan to be there when they do this so I can learn from the "professionals". Maybe next time I can do it myself.
    Chad R.

    POOL SIZE: 16 x 32' Vinyl lined pool. 22,000 gallons. 8' deep. 2009 Hayward 1.5 HP Super Pump. Hayward S310S 30" 500 lb Sand filter. 1 skimmer and 2 returns. Solar Blanket.

    Pics of my pool: http://s307.photobucket.com/albums/nn312/reindeerboy/

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