Change to DE Filter from Sand Filter or not?

May 12, 2016
18
Greenville, SC
#1
So this year I've decided to swap out my single speed pump for a Hayward VS Max-flo. Hoping it's going to save me some bucks in the end. Hopes.. I've also bought the Hayward AQR15 SWG system. Going to have all this installed this weekend hopefully.

Couple questions. (and yes I've been reading and reading and watching youtube video after youtube video and I'm tired of researching! :(

My filter is a sand filter and it's 21" I believe Hayward SP210T or something like that (off the top of my head) Anways.. the filter is only 3 years old. And I was curious if I should swap out my filter while I'm at it and get better filtration and move to a DE filter or just keep the sand filter?

I will oversize it either way so I can get more filtration.

My plumbing is 1.5" and I have about 16k gallons. I was leaning towards the Hayward DE4820 Pro-Grid 48 SQ. Ft. Vertical DE Pool Filter.

I just would like something that's going to make my life easier :D

Opinions/Recommendations?
 

JVTrain

TFP Expert
Feb 3, 2014
5,080
Central Minnesota
#2
Sand filters are arguably the easiest filters to operate. No cleaning cartridges, no recharging DE or cleaning grids. If you're looking to make your life easier, I wouldn't switch to a DE. If you think you really need better filtration, then go with a DE. A good compromise is to add some DE to your sand filter to see if that changes things at all for you. See: Pool School - Add DE to a Sand Filter

Welcome to TFP! :wave:
 

JoyfulNoise

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
May 23, 2015
14,693
Tucson, AZ
#3
DE filters are not easier, just better at fine particulate filtration. Mine is very much oversized in comparison to my pool volume and so that means I simply tear it down twice per year (I don't backwash) and it performs flawlessly....but a deep clean/tear down, when done as meticulously as I do (to satisfy my mild OCD), takes me a good 4+ hours. It's by no means easy, just the pain is limited in frequency.

As long as there are no serious plumbing issues or mismatch between the filter size and pump HP, ditching a 3 year old sand filter is definitely a waste of good money. A well-built sand filter can perform quite well for decades making them quite possibly the cheapest piece of equipment you'll ever own.

Let me ask you this - when was the last time you deep cleaned the sand filter? That link will bring you to an excellent post about how to go about doing a deep clean. People are often quite amazed at the amount of "gunk" that comes out of their supposedly backwashed and "clean" sand when the do a deep clean. It's also an effective way to break up sand channeling which can cause huge performance hits to the filter.
 

Nursenini

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Sep 22, 2015
2,122
Bixby, Ok
#4
I have the Hayward ProGrid 72 sq ft, definitely oversized for my pool but have only needed to backwash twice since the build was completed last July. I like it so far, but haven't done a breakdown clean yet... I know Kim really likes her sand filter and adds some DE to it to "polish" the water. That option might make your life easier than having a DE filter, since you have to add DE every time you backwash and do a full breakdown clean 1-2x/yr.
 
OP
OP
C
May 12, 2016
18
Greenville, SC
#5
Sand filters are arguably the easiest filters to operate. No cleaning cartridges, no recharging DE or cleaning grids. If you're looking to make your life easier, I wouldn't switch to a DE. If you think you really need better filtration, then go with a DE. A good compromise is to add some DE to your sand filter to see if that changes things at all for you. See: Pool School - Add DE to a Sand Filter

Welcome to TFP! :wave:
Yes, I have read about adding DE to a sand filter. I think I'll give this a try.

DE filters are not easier, just better at fine particulate filtration. Mine is very much oversized in comparison to my pool volume and so that means I simply tear it down twice per year (I don't backwash) and it performs flawlessly....but a deep clean/tear down, when done as meticulously as I do (to satisfy my mild OCD), takes me a good 4+ hours. It's by no means easy, just the pain is limited in frequency.

As long as there are no serious plumbing issues or mismatch between the filter size and pump HP, ditching a 3 year old sand filter is definitely a waste of good money. A well-built sand filter can perform quite well for decades making them quite possibly the cheapest piece of equipment you'll ever own.

Let me ask you this - when was the last time you deep cleaned the sand filter? That link will bring you to an excellent post about how to go about doing a deep clean. People are often quite amazed at the amount of "gunk" that comes out of their supposedly backwashed and "clean" sand when the do a deep clean. It's also an effective way to break up sand channeling which can cause huge performance hits to the filter.
I have never heard of deep cleaning a sand filter but have watched the video and will give this a shot this weekend :)

I have the Hayward ProGrid 72 sq ft, definitely oversized for my pool but have only needed to backwash twice since the build was completed last July. I like it so far, but haven't done a breakdown clean yet... I know Kim really likes her sand filter and adds some DE to it to "polish" the water. That option might make your life easier than having a DE filter, since you have to add DE every time you backwash and do a full breakdown clean 1-2x/yr.
Helllllooooooooo Nurse! Ha!

Thanks everyone for your input. It's really appreciated. I think I'll just hang tight with my sand filter for this season and see how it goes.

Also, after reading the "Filter Sizing" chart I'm wondering if the installer undersized my filter! :(

Thanks again everyone!
 

JVTrain

TFP Expert
Feb 3, 2014
5,080
Central Minnesota
#6
Filters installed by contractors are usually undersized, unless the pool owner specifies otherwise. Upsizing the filter above the "industry recommended" size makes them more efficient and less work to clean/backwash/etc. Your filter is fine, it just will need backwashing more often than say a 24" or 27" filter with 300 - 400 pounds of sand rather than ~200. DE does help a bit and I add a little bit after every time I backwash. My 20 pounds of DE I ordered should last me until retirement...