How Do I Know My Filter is Big Enough For My Pool?


Gold Supporter
Sep 1, 2019
Seattle, WA
When i first got my pool, i received a lot of contradictory information from (a) my local spa company vs (b) the manufacturer of the pool itself. Among the "who's telling the truth?" is the following, which I'm hoping you guys can help me settle:

(a) the spa company said my pool filter is of insufficient size.

(b) the pool guys said this:

The filter in your pool has 50 sq ft of pleating, the same amount as physically larger canister filters. As your pool is the standard 7x14, this size filter is more than appropriate for the size of your pool. As a general rule of thumb, you would want 1 sq ft of pleating per 100 gallons of water in your pool. Your pool contains approximately 2750 gallons of water, which would necessitate 27.5 sq ft of pleating in your filter. The filter you have is nearly double that.
my pool is ~2,750 gallons.

the filter is a Pleatco PWW50L Replacement Cartridge for Waterway Teleweir 50-Square-Foot Filter.

who is right?

thanks for any thoughts,

PS: the underlying difference between the two answers is that the (a) guys regard my pool as a spa and the (b) guys regard my pool as a pool ... so that may be a clue.




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

I suspect that they are both right in a way...

For your pool, that size filter should work fine.. But I assume you want to be able to have a lot of water come through the filter to run your spa... The filter maybe too small for your spa operation, depending on how things are plumbed..

Tell us more.. Why does the spa guy say your filter is too small.. What specific problem are you having?

Are you using a standard pool pump to run your spa or something special??


Jim R.


Gold Supporter
Sep 1, 2019
Seattle, WA
The pump is a Gecko Aeware / ink200 .. "single pump system".

Model: IN.XE-5-11-H4.0
Options: 1-2-K-K-D-60K-V2-EP1


in.k200 main keypad LED display, 4 keys

Does that tell you what the pump is? The recirculation pump is definitely controlled by the Gecko and is totally distinct from the pump that creates the swimming current.

The pictures I attached show the filter housing next to the swim current generator.

Here's the problem I think I'm seeing: when I swim at night, and have the two LED underwater lights on, I can see that the water is slightly cloudy. I'm guessing that the particles are dead algae (I got an algae bloom and had to SLAM my pool), and so I'm really like to filter the water better.

While the pump & filter seems to do a decent job, I think the pool geometry causes little areas of circulating water that form such that the water in them is never filtered .. it just continually circulates in the corners of the pool.

So long story short: I'm looking for recommendations on how to filter the water better .. ideally with a filter system i can drop in for 24 hours and run, perhaps every couple of weeks, and then remove when the water is clearer.


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 3, 2007
Pleasanton, CA
Are you sure it is a single pump system? That would be pushing a lot of water through the filter unless there is a bypass around the filter.

A cartridge filter should never exceed 1 GPM/sq-ft and for the longest life possible, it is best to keep it below 0.375 GPM/sq-ft. More than likely, your pump and plumbing combination is exceeding both of these values by a significant amount unless there is a built in bypass. This may mean shorter life for the filters.


Gold Supporter
Sep 1, 2019
Seattle, WA
If i took a picture of the Gecko & associated hardware, would that allow me to clarify what I have in terms of hardware?

I had to do a hard reset of the Gecko - and to do so, I called the pool company and they were the folks who said "single pump system"... but (theoretically anyways), they could have been mistaken, as the initial advice i got on the reset was wrong, and i had to do the reset multiple times until I got it right.

I wrote to my pool company regarding filter lifespan and flow rate. I asked them three specific questions ... here's what they said:

I am answering these questions with the assumption that we are talking solely about the water quality system:

1. do i have a single-pump system? (or something else?)

Yes. This pool-side water quality system uses one circulation pump to move water through the skimmer, filter, heater, and back to the pool.

2. what is the flow rate through my filter when the pool is idle? (meaning, the recirculating pump is quietly humming away and the pool is otherwise not in use).

That pump moves water at around 35 gallons per minute, but it might be less, depending on the total dynamic head and the filter cleanliness.

3. what's the expected lifespan of the pool filter? .. and is there a good way for me to tell when the filter needs to be replaced?

A filter cartridge lasts roughly 6-months before it should be throw away and replaced. In between that time, you can pull it out and rinse it off to keep it functioning well. After 6-months, microscopic particles tend to gum up the pleats and it should be thrown away and replaced.