Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

JoyfulNoise

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
May 23, 2015
14,500
Tucson, AZ
#2
Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

Looks like they're selling you recycled styrofoam packing peanuts....

Spun polyester fiber, so essentially like mini cartridge filter. Only problem I see is you'd never get them truly clean. The "filter ball" will load up with "gunk" and never really get clean. Looks like something that would produce a lot of FC demand just from organics stuck in the material.

Stick with sand or buy a proper cartridge filter. Stay away from the gimmicks.


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YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
9,082
Evans, Georgia
#3
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

Folks around here know I get a wee bit nervous any time I see the word "Blue/Blu" in a product name. Chlorox Blue pool products are an example of this.

Blue implies the product contains copper, something you do NOT want to add to your pool.

Yippee :flower:

Okay... just googled this product and it doesn't appear to claim any anti-algae type action, so ignore my concern about the "Blue".... but it sure seems expensive!
 

FilterThis

In The Industry
Mar 9, 2017
4
Gurnee
#4
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

YippeeSkippy, thank you for doing your homework. the Blu is just a name that pool and spa re-sellers wanted us to use as it reflects the clarity of pool waters. There are no additives or coatings like copper of silver and therefore no anti-fungal or anti-bacterial claims of any kind. Also on point, we do not use any recycled plastic in the construction of FilterBalls, although they are recyclable.

What you will get is tighter particle removal (when compared to sand). 15micron for Blu / 10micron for Blu10 vs 30micron for sand. Consumption of less energy, FilterBalls are less than 1psi differential at start-up where sand can be 7-12 psi differential. The energy to overcome that pressure differential is significant in additional power consumption.
 

FilterThis

In The Industry
Mar 9, 2017
4
Gurnee
#5
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10" instead of sand ?

JoyfulNoise: FilterBalls are not made from any recycled plastic of any type. We use traceable virgin resin for quality control and quality assurance. However, when they do expire (4-5 years) you can place them in the recycle container.

FilterBalls are a fully back washable filter media. The agitation during the back wash cycle does a complete job of shaking loose trapped particulate matter from the ball. What you will not get is sand that locks into your ball valves, destroys pump seals or dumps into your pool.

Let me know when you will give it try.
 

CJadamec

TFP Expert
Apr 29, 2016
2,194
Quaker Hill, CT
#6
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

What flow rates are you comparing for your differential pressures?
Do you have any measured real world pump power consumption data to support the significant power consumption claim?
Is there any power data for 2-speed or variable speed pumps?
Also what is the expected differential mid life of the product after roughly 2 years?

As I've experienced in industrial settings Poly filters tend to lose efficiency over their useful life particularly as you go down in micron size. Sand filters do have a higher differential but that differential tends to stay consistent thru the life of the filter, which should be at least 20 years before the filter housing fails.
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
35,973
Tallahassee, FL
#7
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

YippeeSkippy, thank you for doing your homework. the Blu is just a name that pool and spa re-sellers wanted us to use as it reflects the clarity of pool waters. There are no additives or coatings like copper of silver and therefore no anti-fungal or anti-bacterial claims of any kind. Also on point, we do not use any recycled plastic in the construction of FilterBalls, although they are recyclable.

What you will get is tighter particle removal (when compared to sand). 15micron for Blu / 10micron for Blu10 vs 30micron for sand. Consumption of less energy, FilterBalls are less than 1psi differential at start-up where sand can be 7-12 psi differential. The energy to overcome that pressure differential is significant in additional power consumption.
JoyfulNoise: FilterBalls are not made from any recycled plastic of any type. We use traceable virgin resin for quality control and quality assurance. However, when they do expire (4-5 years) you can place them in the recycle container.

FilterBalls are a fully back washable filter media. The agitation during the back wash cycle does a complete job of shaking loose trapped particulate matter from the ball. What you will not get is sand that locks into your ball valves, destroys pump seals or dumps into your pool.

Let me know when you will give it try.
Mod note: FYI This poster works for the company that sells these balls. That should be kept in mind when reading his replies.
 

pooldv

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Aug 10, 2012
24,993
DFW, TX
#8
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

Why do they need to be replaced after 4-5 years? Our experience is that sand never needs to be replaced in a sand filter. We only recommend sand replacement if the sand becomes too bound up by clarifiers, flocs or other products that we also do not recommend. Otherwise, sand can always be cleaned and reused. Deep Cleaning a Sand Filter
 

domct203

Bronze Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 3, 2015
3,959
CT
#9
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

If there is sand in the pool, valves, or seals, it is not the media's (sand) fault if the proper sand was used to start with. This would point to other issues in the system, like damaged laterals or spider gasket.
 

FilterThis

In The Industry
Mar 9, 2017
4
Gurnee
#10
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu10" instead of sand ?

CJadamec: Using a flux rate of 20gpm/ft2 of media.... and a flow gauge (not vessel rating assumptions)
Yes, I do... by a third party laboratory, If I could figure out how to insert an image.... hope this does it. Triangle is sand, square is FilterBalls.

energy consumption filter sand.jpg
Assuming the system does not have a restriction (some vessel manifolds allow more flow than others) FilterBalls will allow the system to turn over the pool water more frequently in the same amount of pump run time. Pumps with VFD's then can be turned down (reduce the mhz supplied) and therefore will consume less electricity to perform the filtration.
 

JoyfulNoise

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
May 23, 2015
14,500
Tucson, AZ
#11
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

FilterThis:

I won't need to use this product because I use a DE filter which has far better performance than a sand filter and, because it is oversized relative to my pool, never needs backwashing. I've gotten my filter maintenance down to two tear downs per year which saves me a lot on water loss and DE.

The only time when sand gets blown out of a filter from backwashing is when the pump that is paired with the filter is oversized. This happens a lot because pool builders often spec a pump that is not properly matched to the filter. However, that's not the fault of sand or the filter medium and is not a normal conditions to be tolerated. So if that condition does exist, the answer isn't to change the medium, it's to change the pump because an oversized pump will eventually damage a filter.

I'm happy to review any of your other claims about this product - so long as the data shared comes from an independent test source (ie, not your company). I know your excited about your product and that's fine but for TFP to endorse it or consider it an approved alternative, you're going to need to provide much more information that is based on real world and independent testing.


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FilterThis

In The Industry
Mar 9, 2017
4
Gurnee
#12
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10" instead of sand ?

I somewhat agree. Have you ever cleaned a sand filter and used a pick to clean the manifold slots of sand particles? Some slip by, the larger ones get stuck, the largest don't pass at all. The grinding you feel when turning the valve handle is sand grit in the crevices of the valve. Remove the sand from the systems equation and you have a cleaner system.
 

CJadamec

TFP Expert
Apr 29, 2016
2,194
Quaker Hill, CT
#13
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

Your graph seems very misleading. The left axis labeled Triibung/FNU as far as I can tell refers to water turbidity and the right axis is pressure in mbar (1mbar = 0.0145 psi). The bottom axis shows a duration of time 0-150 min. Your bracketed green delta p doesn't seem to correlate to anything. You've also edited out the graph legend on the right side of the picture.

You claimed that the high differential (in psi by the way not mbar which are VERY different units) was at start up not after 150 min. At startup it would appear both filters are very equal.

As for the VFD question, I understand that a running a pump at a lower speed by controlling the A/C frequency Hz (not MHz) driving the motor will result in lower over all power consumption. The question was did you compare the power consumption of a traditional sand filter next to a filterball filter using a VFD pump over its full RPM range.

This graph seems to be implying a relationship between increased turbidity over a course of 150 min will lead to a higher pressure. In no way is this graph representative of a real world use of a pool filter.

I've never experienced sand being blown into my pool either as you've claimed nor is my backwash valve on my filter grinding.
 

domct203

Bronze Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 3, 2015
3,959
CT
#14
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

I don't see how the chart you posted has anything to do with your claim of energy efficiency or reduced backpressure, in fact, I'm not sure what it shows. Why is the left axis in German anyways?

IMG_9598.jpg
 

borjis

LifeTime Supporter
Aug 19, 2014
2,643
Pacific NW
#15
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

I've never heard or felt sand grinding when turning my multiport valves. New or old.

If it does happen it's a broken spider gasket or laterals. Repairing it would address that issue entirely.
 

jblizzle

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 19, 2010
41,197
Tucson, AZ
#17
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

So what's the verdict?...is anyone on here using FilterBalls?
I think the verdict is that the shill trying to talk up his product realized we were not going to let it slide and he moved on to easier targets ;)

Stick with regular sand. Cheaper and never wears out.
 

pooldv

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Aug 10, 2012
24,993
DFW, TX
#18
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

And it is what your filter was designed to use.
 

partsman

Well-known member
Apr 28, 2017
140
Westerly RI
#19
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

Stick with regular sand. Cheaper and never wears out.
And it is what your filter was designed to use.
Thank you for the reply sir!

I don't have a problem with using sand at all, but I am having a problem figuring out which one to use. I was reading a thread on here about a guy that got bogus quikrete sand and the pictures he posted of it with the 'good' HTH sand is just not what I was picturing.
This is my first sand filter (still in the box) I'm switching from cartridges. So to be honest, I had no idea what pool filter sand is supposed look like til I saw those pics. When hear (or see) the term 'filter media' and that Intex is specifying a certain size, grade, etc...I'm thinking that it will be all the same size and uniform in shape and not just regular outdoor sand that is screened down to a tolerable level. Maybe I'm thinking too much about it? haha
 

tim5055

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 11, 2014
10,094
Franklin, NC
#20
Re: Anyone ever tried the new "FilterBalls Blu 10 Advanced" instead of sand ?

Thank you for the reply sir!

I don't have a problem with using sand at all, but I am having a problem figuring out which one to use. I was reading a thread on here about a guy that got bogus quikrete sand and the pictures he posted of it with the 'good' HTH sand is just not what I was picturing.
This is my first sand filter (still in the box) I'm switching from cartridges. So to be honest, I had no idea what pool filter sand is supposed look like til I saw those pics. When hear (or see) the term 'filter media' and that Intex is specifying a certain size, grade, etc...I'm thinking that it will be all the same size and uniform in shape and not just regular outdoor sand that is screened down to a tolerable level. Maybe I'm thinking too much about it? haha
Got an Ace Hardware close by? HTH 50lbs Pool Filter Sand (61308) - Pool Maintenance Equipment - Ace Hardware

But, I would not hesitate to use the Quikrete which is available at Lowes or Home Depot.