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How Often Should You Change Your Swimming Pool Filter?

How Often Should You Change Your Swimming Pool Filter?

Issue Time:2022/11/10
when to change pool filter
Your pool filter is like the kidneys of your pool: it filters out the debris and unwanted dirt to provide you with fresh, clean water.

It's important to make sure your filters are working effectively, whether you're using an indoor pool or a small aboveground pool during the summer. In this guide, we'll find out when you should replace your filter system and how to keep your water purifier running longer.

How Do Pool Filters Work?

Pool filters are very simple. The pump pushes the water through a narrow space that allows only clean water to pass through, collecting any small dirt particles and removing them from the water.

Types of Pool Filters

There are various types of filters for swimming pools, and what is right for you usually depends on the type and size of the swimming pool you have.
Generally speaking, swimming pool filters fall into three categories:

Cartridge filter

Sand filter

 Glass filters

Small pools, such as makeshift above-ground pools or hot tubs, often use filters. This filter isn't as effective as sand or glass, but it's the easiest and cheapest option and is ideal for smaller pools.

The filter element is usually round, like a barrel, made of polyester cloth or corrugated paper. A swimming pool with this type of filter will push water through the filter element, trapping any dirt.

However, most swimming pools opt for filter pumps that use sand or glass media. Here, the filter is part of the pump system itself, filtering any dirt that passes through and returning clean water to the pool.

Sand filter media works by allowing water to pass through a tank containing sand (usually silica or pool grade, not just from the beach!). Smaller water particles will pass, but larger particles will get stuck, providing clean water.

Glass filter media works in much the same way. However, glass filter media tend to be more effective, capturing particles about 1/4 the size of a sand filter. Therefore, they tend to be more effective.

How Long Do Pool Filters Last?

Your swimming pool pump system is expected to pump 60-70,000 gallons of water every 8 hours. That's a lot of work!

Like all things, pool filters become less effective with age! When a filter exceeds its heyday, it becomes clogged, dirty, and ineffective.

The lifespan of a pool filter ultimately depends on how much dirt it needs to clean. Assuming you maintain your pool properly, you should expect the following schedule on average:

Filter element - about 2,000 operating hours, usually about 2-4 years.

Sand filter media - about 3-7 years

 Glass filters media - about 7-15 years

When to Clean Pool Filters?

If your pool filter has deteriorated, it doesn't necessarily need to be replaced. All filters need to be cleaned regularly to ensure they are functioning fully.

If you are using a cartridge filter, remove it and rinse thoroughly with a stiff brush and hose, and use a professional cleaner if available. The goal is to do it once a week for optimal filter life.

To maintain a sand-based pump filtration system, you will need to perform a procedure called backwashing. Most pump systems come with a backflush option that allows water to flow through in the opposite way as before, removing clogged dirt from the filter.

You should consider backwashing your pool filter whenever pressure rises about 8 to 10 psi from normal levels. During periods of heavy use, this happens every week, sometimes more often than that.

How to Know When Your Filter Needs to Be Replaced?

As mentioned above, some symptoms of a poorly working filter can be due to poor cleaning. However, there are often problems with cleaning filters that are not enough and need to be replaced.

Here are some signs to look out for when considering a filter replacement:

Underperforming Fast

If your filter clogs or stops cleaning more often than expected, it can lose its quality even with frequent backwashing.

Use Date

Due to their design, filter elements usually have an expiration date. However, all filters have an estimated useful life. If it passes, then it's best to replace the filter.

Damaged Filter

This applies to filter elements, which tend to tear over time. If this happens, you need to replace the filter.

How Often Should You Change Your Pool Filter?

You should replace your pool filter whenever it degrades, exceeds its expected lifespan, or shows signs of damage. Typically, symptoms begin every five years, but the time frame can range from every year to every 15 years.

When to Replace the Sand Filter?

Sand filters typically last about three to seven years, depending on usage.

If you clean and backwash the filter frequently and only use the pool seasonally, you can expect to replace it after at least five years. While sand filters can last a few more years, we recommend replacing your media at this point to maintain a healthy pool system in the long run.

When to Replace Glass Media Filters?

Glass filter media is known for its longevity - if properly cared for, it may not need to be replaced for over a decade!

The service life of glass filter media can exceed the time span of sand media. However, we also recommend replacing it every five years to keep your pool system running efficiently.

When to Change the Filter?

You can usually visually determine if your filter is working properly, but it is always recommended that you replace it after its expiration date. This date is usually a year or two later, depending on the brand. If you see a tear in the filter, it needs to be replaced.

Pool Filter Clogged Too Fast? Longevity Secrets

Ultimately, the lifespan of a filter depends on how much dirty water it needs to clean. If you want to extend the life of your filters, make sure you maintain your pool regularly and follow cleaning rules.

Manage Pool Water Quality

The most important thing is to maintain the correct chemical balance every day. Having the right chemicals will stop algae from forming and help deal with other dirt and debris, reducing stress on your pool filter.

Be aware that while clarifiers and similar products can make your pool look clean, they can cause your filters to become more clogged. In the end, there is no substitute for frequent chemical management.

Clean Swimmer

The more the pool is used, the dirtier it can become.

Pool users can bring contaminants into the pool and eventually into the filter. These can include body oils, shampoos, beverages, and more.

If you want to take care of your pool, you can take steps to minimize the impact on people.

Shower first - taking a shower before entering the pool will remove some of the contaminants that end up in the filter.

No food or drink - people are encouraged to enjoy any food or drink before or after the pool, not during the swim!

Caring for Your Pool Filter when Not in Use

Another thing to consider is what happens to the filter when the pool is not in use. If you use your lap pool seasonally, make sure your cartridge filters are properly stored during the off-season. Also, check them out before the next season, as they can sometimes lose quality over time even if you don't use them.

The pump filtration system should still be run at intervals during the off-season to keep the chemicals ticking in the water. Therefore, you need to monitor your filters during the low season. As with your entire pool, investing in a cover and closing your pool properly will also help keep your filters working effectively.

The above introduces the working principle and service life of swimming pool filters. If you want to buy swimming pool filters, please contact us.

MAYGO is a professional custom pool filters and accessories supplier. Our product range includes pool pumps, sand filters, cartridge filters, filtration systems and pool accessories. The product is constantly updated and iterative, with more functions and more choices. MAYGO has obtained a number of patents, as well as CE, SAA, ETL, CCC, CANS certification.