As summer approaches and warmer temperatures are just around the corner, now is the best time to start thinking about ways to prep your swimming pool for the upcoming season. With that being said, is your filter ready to handle the increased filtration, suntan oils, body oils, and so much more? When is the last time you actually cleaned your filter? When it comes to cartridge filters they should be done at least twice and year and don’t always rely on the gauges because they aren’t the most accurate.
Cleaning a Cartridge Filter
At Clark County Pool & Lawn we know cartridge filters are popular but it’s important to know that when the gauge reaches “dirty” that you properly clean them! But, please keep in mind if it has been 6 months since your last cleaning, it’s time!
How To Clean A Cartridge Filter
One of the biggest reasons why homeowners choose cartridge filters is the lack of continuous maintenance it requires. Unlike sand or DE filter that needs to be backwashed regularly, a cartridge filter only needs to be cleaned twice a year. It might be more than twice if you have heavy use. When a cartridge filter needs to be cleaned, it can, however, be a tedious process but we want to support you with that. So, if your pressure gauge is 10 – 12PSI above the starting pressure or it reads “Dirty” or if it has been 6 months, it’s now time to begin the process. At Clark County Pool & Lawn, we not only offer weekly service but this service also and wanted to give you the step by step process for those that want to do it at home. Please keep in mind, cartridge filters are great for those that are water conscious but to keep it functioning properly you must keep it clean!
The following is a step by step process on how to clean a cartridge filter:
- Completely turn off all your filtration equipment and make sure the pool timer is not set to automatically turn on during your cleaning process. If you have access to the breaker box turning it off is also a good idea.
- Slowly bleed the air from the filter by opening up the air relief valve. You can typically find this valve on the top of your filter.
- Open up the drain plug to let all the water out of the filter.
- Remove the tension clamp that holds the filter together. Each brand may have its own release mechanism, so make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and have the proper tools to do it.
- Please remove the piece that is holding the cartridges in place.
- Carefully and slowly remove all the cartridge filters and set them aside. It is important to inspect each cartridge for cracks, tears or other any other visual damage. If damage has occurred you will need to replace it as soon as possible. If your filters are old and one is showing this type of wear the rest might need to be replaced as well.
- Use a garden hose to rinse debris from between the pleats. Do this from top to bottom and then flip the filter over to again clean it from top to bottom. Make sure to run the water and clean the inside of the filter, as well.
- After they have been rinsed off and no damage is present you will need a large bucket or trash can for the next step. This step will help to remove lotions, oils, and sunscreen. You will need to soak them in a filter cleaner, detergent, or chlorine. This process should take about 8 -10 hours and can be left overnight if you choose. If you use a detergent only use 1 cup for every 5 gallons of water. Do not use more than what is recommended. This is one of those instances where more isn’t better because it can be difficult to remove the soap!
- After the soak has been completed make sure to hose them off again extremely well to remove the cleaning agent. Hose them off similar to how you did in step #7.
- Place cartridges back in the filter, replace the piece that holds them together and replace the lid and clamp. Fill the filter with water and make sure clamp is tight and on well before you move on to step #11.
- Turn on the system and open up air relief valve to remove all excess air.
- Take note of new filter pressure and set clean and dirty numbers to help remind you when it’s time to do this process again. This can be done on filters with newer gauges. If you don’t have a dirty setting take note of initial pressure.
As a weekly service and maintenance company in the Las Vegas area this is a service that we proudly offer but wanted to provide you with all the steps necessary if you care to do it yourself. If you should have any questions about your filter, please contact us today!