DE vs cartridge filter?

heckofagator

Well-known member
Oct 6, 2021
109
Tampa, FL
Pool Size
14000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
I've read a handful of threads here......so I'm not entirely sure what I'm hoping to achieve here other than perhaps some further clarity....

we're redoing all of our plumbing and equipment. I think I could coin flip between DE and cartridge and from what I read, it comes down to personal preference. I've had neither (this is a new house, I guess we had DE for a couple months). I have read that DE can filter a little finer and I don't particularly care about the extra maintenance of the DE, but I also guess if I don't have to mess with DE, that's fine too.

I have also read that you can get clear, good looking water with either, which leads me to perhaps just going with the cheaper Pentair CC200 cart filter is the best bet since I'm not sure I care either way? I will say the one time I drained our current DE filter, I ended up with DE media everywhere on the pad, but this drain was pretty quick after a fresh DE recharge. Maybe if I go longer between draining, this isn't an issue.
 

Newdude

Mod Squad
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Jun 16, 2019
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Hey gator !!!! Feel free to have a preference of which filter you would rather maintain. That part is real. Other than that, if you can't see the 1/25400th of an inch (microns) being filtered........ even 20 of them in a clump.... then who cares ?

Go check the 'TFP clear' thread. There are plenty of sand filters posting pics there with stunning results. As the 'lesser' filtering of the 3, you can't lose with any of them. :)
 
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heckofagator

Well-known member
Oct 6, 2021
109
Tampa, FL
Pool Size
14000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
thanks guys. Yeah, this being our first pool, no preference yet but hopefully we'll have a working pool soon!

Cartridge does seem a little simpler from what I know, which is a good thing. But like I said, I don't mind working with the DE if it made sense. I know we're talking microns difference here but wasn't 'sure if that would show up in sunlight or something.

CC200 from Pentair is as good as any ?
 
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Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
26,481
Bedford, TX
Heck,

I've told this story before, but I'll do it again. I started by pool life when I bought two rent houses with pools. Both of them had DE filters. I then had a pool built at my house and really, really wanted another DE filter. At the time, I was very disappointed because City rules about plumbing the DE wastewater to the sewer made this impossible. I had to "settle" for a large cartridge filter. Now, almost 8 years later, I can hardly wait for my DE filters to die so I can replace them with large cartridge filters.

I like cartridge filters much better... No messing with DE. Dirt simple plumbing. No Multiport valve to go bad or leak. I could go a whole year between cleanings, but I like to clean my filter twice a year. Once in the Spring and once in the Fall. The larger the filter the better. The larger the filter the less back pressure and the slower you can run your VS pump. My filter pressure is only about 1 or 2 lbs. and that is plenty of water flow to turn on my SWCG and keep the pool skimmed.

I will never, ever buy another DE filter.

If your pool is inside a screen-room, then 200sq. ft. is fine, but if outside I'd recommend a 420 or 520 as you can never go too big with a cartridge filter.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

PoolGate

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Jun 7, 2017
7,391
Damascus, MD
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IMO DE is an obsolete holdover from when people thought the filter was what made the water clear. Water is clear because it is clean and properly balanced.

I would use nothing but cartridge and think DE should be allowed to die. I think DE is still around primarily because of the disconnect between equipment makers and consumers, that being pool builders.

I have used both and greatly prefer cartridge.
 
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HeyEng

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Nov 7, 2018
985
Oklahoma City, OK
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We have a large cartridge filter for our fairly small pool. As you can see from my pics, there are a lot of trees and there is a lot of debris I deal with. Nonetheless, I don't clean my filters but once a year. Last time I did it, they weren't very dirty and the resultant pressure decrease (indicating cleaner filters) was less than 1 PSI. So, I am all about cartridge.

If we moved to another house with a pool and it didn't have a cartridge filter, that would be very high on the priority list for converting to cartridge.
 
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Newdude

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Whist I respect the other 2, I moved heaven and earth to secure my beloved Carts for my 2nd build, when that ship went sideways last year.

So, count me for another Cartridge vote.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
26,481
Bedford, TX
Will ask about upsizing the cartridge.

heck,

Keep in mind that Florida is the "Land of the Dinky Filters"... :poke:

Just go over to our construction forum, and you can look at the equipment pad pics. You can tell who is in Florida and who is not. :mrgreen:

I say this because I am sure you will get some pushback from your pool builder. Just keep in mind that other than the initial cost, there is just no downside for going bigger. And don't worry about cost of replacement cartridges. You should not have to replace them for 7 to 10 years, if then.. My pools about 8 years old and I'm still using the same ones. I've seen posts where the "pool guy" says they need to be replaced every year or so. Total Bull Feathers.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 
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Newdude

Mod Squad
Gold Supporter
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Jun 16, 2019
16,490
NY
Even if it is a $500 upcharge, and it will likely be half of that, it is the backbone of the operation. Shave the cost from somewhere else, like 1/2 inch less pato all around if you absolutely have to.
 

heckofagator

Well-known member
Oct 6, 2021
109
Tampa, FL
Pool Size
14000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Looking at the Pentair stuff......Looks like there's a Clean and Clear series, which maxes out at 200 sq feet, which is what was initially quoted and then there's a Clean and Clear Plus series which can get you up to 320 sq feet for another $400 or so.

Trying to do some quick reading on the differences - just curious if they are better in any other way besides more filter sq foot?
 

heckofagator

Well-known member
Oct 6, 2021
109
Tampa, FL
Pool Size
14000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Just for further clarification, pool is existing we're just replacing plumbing and equipment. We're at about $11k for Pentair VS main pump, 1.5HP Spa pump, cart filter, Intellicenter with IC40 and all plumbing re-done and put up on a pad(s). But yeah, another couple hundred won't break the bank for the bigger filter.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
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May 3, 2014
50,012
Laughlin, NV
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The Clean and Clear Plus are multi cartridge filters. The one you quote is a single cartridge.

I have the CC Plus 240 SF. Works great for our small pool. Yours I would suggest at least the 320 SF.
 
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proavia

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Feb 6, 2015
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Chandler AZ
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Cartridge over DE all day long. No messing with DE and having to dispose of the used DE either.

No telling why Florida pool builders install such dinky filters.
Suggest a Pentair CCP 320 or 420. Buy the biggest filter you can afford - bigger filter, less times you have to clean it.
 

Jerz

Gold Supporter
Apr 13, 2021
52
Atlanta
Pool Size
32000
Surface
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Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
My previous pool was DE and at the time loved it because of the sparkling water but now have DE and have the same sparking water and no backwashing... I'd do cartridge.
 

1poolman1

In The Industry
Jul 14, 2014
2,181
Sacramento
DE is not usually recommended with VSPs as there is evidence that you don't get complete coverage of the grids/DE cartridge with DE when the water is moving slow. Large cartridge or sand is the way to go. Nothing less than 300sq. ft. for cartridge.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
26,481
Bedford, TX
there is evidence that you don't get complete coverage of the grids

I can only go by the two rent house pools I have with DE filters.. Those pools have 3 HP IntelliFlo VS pumps that run at 1200 RPM most of the time.. One pool has a 48 sq. ft. filter, and the other a 60 sq. ft. filter. I can tell you when I open and clean the filters, both them are fully coated with DE.

I run at 1200 RPM because I have a SWCG. Maybe your samples were taken from pools that were being run at 600 RPM. :scratch:

In general, I would never recommend running below 1000 RPM, as I just don't see the point.

Thanks.

Jim R.
 

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