Comparison of Sand and Cartridge Filters for Pools

Your backyard swimming pool is a great place to have fun with family and friends, especially with the upcoming spring. It is also a feature that adds value to your home. It is important to keep it clean and well-maintained.

Determining the Best Fit

Your pool filtering system circulates water through the filter, removing debris and contaminates. There is some confusion over which kind of filter is the best for each pool system. Even if you choose to have a professional pool service maintain your pool and equipment, it is still good for you to understand the differences between sand and cartridge filters.

Sand Filters

The most common and least expensive type of filter is the sand filter. The sand filter works by pushing water through a media bed of sand particles where the particles are removed. If there is a build-up of debris, the water flow slows and is not as effective. It is necessary to backwash the system to flush out the debris and clean the sand. If the sand is extremely dirty, it can be replaced inexpensively.

A sand filter system is a large, round fiberglass globe, so you can monitor it for cleanliness. Sand filters are simple to use, and backwashing only takes a few minutes. If you backwash often and work to keep your pool free of debris, a sand media bed can last several years. A dirty sand filter can put too much stress on the filter system because the water can’t flow properly, and if this is not corrected, it can cause damage to the unit. This is the least expensive method for filtering pool water, but not necessarily the most effective.

Cartridge Filters

Cartridge filters are generally more effective than sand filters. The material that makes up this type of filter can filter smaller particles and run at a lower pressure than sand. When the filter becomes dirty, the water flow is decreased just like the sand filter, but cleaning the cartridge is a much more involved process than backwashing a sand filter. The housing assembly is dismantled, and the cartridge can be removed and cleaned out with a brush and a hose. There are two basic types of cartridge filters, and they vary in price. The more expensive filters can last for five years or longer.

Deciding on what type of filtration system is best for your needs is a choice that can have long-term effects. Consider the cost, ease-of-use and quality of the filter that you choose. Consult with a professional pool maintenance company to help make the decision.