Possible switch from DE to Cartridge, thoughts?

cesmode

Well-known member
Jun 9, 2017
53
Hackettstown
Hi,
Please refer to DE getting into pool for my reasoning behind contemplating the switch to cartridge. Not having dropped $90/hr on a pool guy to spend a few hours simply diagnosing my problem...Ive replaced EVERY element in the filter with the exception of the stand pipe. Im still getting DE in my pool through the returns while the pump is running. We are beyond a blown grid or cracked manifold...all replaced.

My wife is beside herself, shes upset that we lost nearly the second half of the summer (as well as $300+ in replacement parts). She wants this nightmare to be over. I suggested a "downgrade" switch to cartridge in the spring.

I understand that DE offers the smallest micron filtration. Cartridge filtration is next in line with Sand being at the bottom. I don't mind taking out the cartridges every other week for a hose down or even less than that if I spring for the multi-element (4 cartridge 325 sq ft filter). It seems straight forward, plug and play.

What are your thoughts on this move both in cost, water quality and clarity, and ease of maintenance? Will I notice a huge (negative) difference in water clarity switching to cartridge from DE? Cartridges seem pretty easy to maintain, correct?

Or should I let a pool guy take his time to diagnose my problem and then attempt to fix it (potentially dropping several hundred in the process without a guarantee of fixing my problem). Im thinking that in the end, the costs might cancel out, but I'll save myself the headache by making the switch.

Im closing up the pool soon because why not...im defeated. Kick the can down the road into the spring and rid myself of the headache?


In ground 16x34 vinyl liner pool. 3 yrs old.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
14,178
Bedford, TX
C,

I started with DE filters and when I built my current pool I was told my City requires the back wash be plumbed to the sewer.. The sewer is on the other side of the house and was going to cost a small fortune.. I reluctantly installed a large Cartridge filter... It was the best decision I could have made....

I can't tell any difference in the water and I don't need to screw with the DE... I have a VS pump running on low, so I only clean my filter twice a year, but could go an entire year if I wanted.

In your location, I would assume you could use it all year and clean it when you close.

The bigger the filter the better.

My original two pools, which are now rent houses, still have their old DE filters, but when they go South, I'll replace them with large cartridge filters..

Thanks,

Jim R.
 
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cesmode

Well-known member
Jun 9, 2017
53
Hackettstown
Jim, that puts my mind at ease a bit. I just didnt want to have a noticeable difference in water clarity. People always marvel about how crystal clear my water is, even other pool owners (one of them has a cartridge). I have pool experts in my area stumped as to what the problem is. Ive brought the filter to three pool stores, spoke to many people on the phone. Anything they suggest replacing has been done. Anything they suggest doing has been done. I know there can only be a certain amount of reasons why Im getting DE in the pool but we havent found it yet.

Just to get a rough idea, I saw hayward c3030 (I think), 4 element cartridge system 325sqft. Figure thats good for my 16x34 (3ft shallow, 8 ft deep) on amazon for something like $850.

I figure the maintenance on the cartridges will be as much as I put in with filter grids, without the DE. Im meticulous about water chemistry so the "lesser" filtration shouldnt be much of an issue as long as I do what I do.
DE getting into the pool without a solution/rhyme or reason....take the DE filter out and put a cartridge filter in. Problem solved.

VS

Pay a pool expert 90-100/hr to figure out whats wrong. Then any parts and labor to fix the problem. I might be at the cost of a cartridge filter.

Now im wondering...will my existing plumbing/union set up fit into the hayward filter I am looking at in terms of height off of the ground? I am not good at piping so I would need to probably pay someone to do that if piping/cutting is required.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
14,178
Bedford, TX
C,

It is unlikely that anything will line up, and you will have to remove the multiport valve anyway... In my mind, just one less thing to go bad or screw with..

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

cesmode

Well-known member
Jun 9, 2017
53
Hackettstown
I have a diverter valve before my pool pump that, I guess, controls flow for returns and skimmers.

If you are saying I can get rid of the MPV, do I need any other sort of valve for a cartridge to set things to closed/winterize, recirculate, or waste? I do want a waste valve so I can vac to waste or drain to waste when the water level gets too high because of rain (this does happen often during the summer).
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
968
NY
The valve before the pump should be split to the skimmers and/or skimmers and main drain(s). A 3 way valve before the filter can then be used to either filter or waste the flow from the pump. Like you said, that one comes in handy for draining and also if i have alot of stuff to vaccuum, ill sweep it to a general area and then send it right to waste.
 

cesmode

Well-known member
Jun 9, 2017
53
Hackettstown
The valve that I have before the pump is one of those pentair ones where you unscrew a screw move the handle in the new position that you want, and screw it back in (hand screw).
It then goes to pump and then to the Multiport valve that I have that has options for filter/backwash/rinse/close/recirc, etc.

The diverter valve Im speaking of receives plumbing directly from ground and doesnt have any option to go to waste.

I dont have a main drain.
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
968
NY
Multiports confuse me as I don’t have one. Mine is just a simple 3 way (Pentair) which comes from the pump and then selects either filter to returns or waste pipe to backyard bypassing the filter.
 

TBSNPS

Silver Supporter
Jun 2, 2019
64
Sacramento,Ca.
How nice would it be if there was a retrofit kit available that allowed you to "pitch" the DE grids and just slip in cartridges. Keeping the old housing and plumbing in place.
 

cesmode

Well-known member
Jun 9, 2017
53
Hackettstown
Newdude, thats exactly what I want.

I am 90% sure I want to ditch the DE system (and the leaking MPV) to go with a much simpler cartridge system and valve. Filter, and waste. Thats all I want. It'll sit in filter 90% of the time, and I'll switch to waste when I want to drain water or vac up a pile of leaves.

Thats it. Simple. And thats all I'll need if I go cartridge I assume. I wont need backwash, rinse, recirculate (never really use it anyways). Closed (not even sure what this does because Ive had DE shoot back into the pool on this setting), winterize is good but not sure its needed.
 

cesmode

Well-known member
Jun 9, 2017
53
Hackettstown
for a 16x34, 3ft shallow 8 foot deep (something in the neighborhood of 21k-23k gallons or something??), 1hp pump...what size cartridge filter is recommended? Im thinking the hayward c3030 multielement 325 sqft...bit pricey :( but probably perfect for my pool. Thoughts?
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
968
NY
The experts can properly upsize you to the proper equipment. Someone will chime in shortly I’m sure. You always want the equipment bigger than you need but at some point it is just overkill so not too much bigger.

I can tell you that with my cartridge filter my pool is a sparkly as yours was/is. You can count the small holes on my main drains from outside on the shallow end side. Through roughly 40 foot of water with the diagonal line of sight. Pretty sure the human brain can’t possibly tell the 5 micron difference between the 2 filters. Maybe for a few hours if you dumped a truckload of fine silt into the pool, but within a reasonable amount of time mine would clear enough to not be able to tell again.
 

cesmode

Well-known member
Jun 9, 2017
53
Hackettstown
Ever pool installer/maintenance/service person I speak to is trying to convince me not to go cartridge and that it would be the biggest mistake of my life. I even had one guy tell me that the taylor test kit is trash, that liquid chlorine is a waste of my time and everything that Ive been doing up to this point has been user error.

Needless to say Im not going to be using him for anything.
 

Divin Dave

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Oct 2, 2013
5,626
Longview, Texas
cesmode,
You will love, Love, LOVE a good size Cartridge filter. No DE to replenish or to blow in the pool. No backwashin or MPV spider gaskets to blow out on you and leak. Nothing. Just clean the filters when they need it.

I have a 420 sq ft fiter and I only clean them once a year, and I run my VS pump 24/7. Truth be known, I easily could stretch that another 6 months. As a side note to that, my bather load is small. YMMV slightly, depending on bather load. Get the biggest filter you can afford. No such thing as a filter that is too large

My set up is the same as what you want.
Pump ------ Jandy Valve (filter or waste setting), ------ Filter ----Pool

Its a simple and effective system.

And I will add, even though the literature says DE filters out smaller particles, you will not be able to tell the difference in your water with a Cartridge filter.

EDIT - My cartridges are 6 years old and are in great shape and I expect to get another several years out of them. so dont think you have to replace them every couple of years, because that's just not the case at all.

Oh, and I would recommend when you install the new fillter, go and splurge 15 dollars and replace the cheap pressure gauge with a glycerin filled one. This gauge is the bomb!
 
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Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
968
NY
cesmode,
You will love the Cartridge filter. No DE to replenish or to blow in the pool. No backwashing. Nothing. Just clean the filters when they need it.

I have a 420 sq ft fiter and I only clean them once a year, and I run my VS pump 24/7. Truth be known, I easily could stretch that another 6 months. As a side note to that, my bather load is small. YMMV slightly, depending on bather load. Get the biggest filter you can afford. No such thing as a filter that is too large

My set up is the same as what you want.
Pump ------ Jandy Valve (filter or waste setting), ------ Filter ----Pool

Its a simple and effective system.

And I will add, even though the literature says DE filters out smaller particles, you will not be able to tell the difference in your water with a Cartridge filter.

EDIT - My cartridges are 6 years old and are in great shape and I expect to get another several years out of them. so dont think you have to replace them every couple of years, because that's just not the case at all.
+1. All of it. Easy peasy to maintain and also figure out. My setup has 2 options. Drain to backyard or filter to pool.

Some people sleep better that their DE gets out 5 more microns than mine. I can’t argue it. They are correct. If it makes them feel better than I raise my beer to salute them. Come point those MICRONS out in my pool anytime y’all like. I’ll supply the beer and y’all will be blackout before you find one. Either way it’s gonna be fun.

**edit for the ABG/Intex people**. We are comparing like to like with oversized filters. I have seen some cartridge filters on here that are the size of my hot tub filter. If you have one of those, then yes, you will be cleaning it twice a week.
 
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cesmode

Well-known member
Jun 9, 2017
53
Hackettstown
HI guys, thanks for the info. If and when I switch, it will be to cartridge. But I had someone out to replace the 'replacement' spider gasket that I had put in (and was leaking). Problem seems to be solved. the smallest amount of DE getting in, if you know where to look and are looking for it. And honestly, Ive sene as much in the pool before in previous years (didnt know what it was at the time). Not concerned. So I think the play is to save my $850 and stick with the DE until it fails. But cartridge is in the cards if it does fail again.
 
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Mayorb

In The Industry
Mar 16, 2010
149
Pentair makes the "Quad 4" filter in a few sizes. It's the best of both worlds. You get superior clarity, and very easy cleanings.
The elements look like cartridges but are significantly easier to clean. In/out filter clean 20 mins. Curved panel DE grids shouldn't even be on the market anymore.