How To Chemically Clean a Pool Cartridge Filter

WRITTEN BY:  Inyo Pools

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Chemicals like calcium and oils from bathers can become embedded in the pleats of your pool cartridge filter. These contaminates are difficult to remove with a standard hose cleaning and may have to be removed chemically. If you are having to clean your cartridge filter every 3-4 days to keep the pool pressure down, it may be time to clean your cartridge chemically with a solution like TSP. This guide shows you how to chemically clean your pool's cartridge filter. Although this description is specific to a Hayward cartridge filter, many of the steps can apply to other models of cartridge filters.






Step by Step

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Step 1

OBSERVE HIGH PRESSURE - A high presuure gage reading is a good indication that you need to clean your cartridge filter. If you just cleaned the cartridge within the last week, you need to chemically clean or replace it.

Step 2

TURN OFF POWER - The first step is to turn off the pool pump to stop the flow of water through the pool filter.

Step 3

RELIEVE PRESSURE -  Next you will have to relieve the pressure that has built up in the pool filter. To relieve pressure turn the air relief valve on top of the filter counter clockwise. Water will spray out initially as you see the pressure on the pressure gauge go to 0 psi.

Step 4

TURN LOCKING KNOB - To access the pool filter cartridge you will have to take the pool filter head off the top of the filter. Turn the locking knob counter clockwise until you feel the pool filter head is loose.

Step 5

LIFT FILTER HEAD - Next lift the pool filter head off the top of the filter. It may be a little hard to lift initially as you break the O-ring seal between the two pool filter parts.

Step 6

VIEW CARTRIDGE - With the pool filter head off, you will see the top of the pool filter cartridge.

Step 7

LIFT OUT CARTRIDGE - Lift the pool filter cartridge straight up to remove it from the pool filter body.

Step 8

CLEAN CARTRIDGE - Set the filter cartridge on the lawn and begin cleaning it with a garden hose. Use a full stray nozzle. A pressure nozzle may be too strong and will cause unnecessary wear on the pleated folds. When spraying, start at the top of the cartridge. Work your way straight down the cartridge to work the debris down and out the bottom of the pool filter cartridge

Step 9

PLACE CARTRIDGE IN CONTAINER - Place the cartridge in a tall narrow container. You will want to fill the container with cleaning solution so get one that is as close to the size of the cartridge as possible. The one we have selected isn't quite tall enough to submerge the whole filter, but it will be suffice as long as we can clean the majority of the cartridge. Place the dirtiest end (bottom) at the bottom of the container.

Step 10

MIX TSP CLEANER - Using a 5 gallon bucket mix up enough buckets of TSP solution to fill your container. Stir in 1 cup of TSP powder per 4 gallons of water  Some people may be sensitive to this cleaner so, as a precausion, wear rubber gloves and safety glasses. Do not get this solution in your eyes or on your clothes. Read the safety instructions on the TSP box.

Step 11

FILL CONTAINER - Fill the container to the top of the container to cover as much of the cartridge as possible.

Step 12

SOAK CARTRIDGE OVERNIGHT - Leave the cartridge in the container to soak 12 hrs.

Step 13

REMOVE CARTRIDGE - Using rubber gloves and safety glasses, remove the cartridge from the container.

Step 14

RINSE CARTRIDGE - Rinse the TSP solution off of the cartridge in the grass. As before, wear rubber gloves and safety glasses as a precaution and avoid back splashes to your clothes.

Step 15

REPLACE CARTRIDGE - When you've finished cleaning the pool filter cartridge, replace the cartridge by placing it straight down into the filter.

Step 16

CHECK AND LUBRICATE O-RING - It's always a good practice to lubricate the pool filter head O-ring before replacing the filter head. Lubrication will insure a better fit and extend the life of the O-ring. Rub a thin coat of lubrication on the outside of the O-ring.

Step 17

REPLACE FILTER HEAD - Replace the pool filter head on top of the pool filter. Position the top so that you can read the pressure gauge.

Step 18

CHECK O-RING - When replacing the filter top, watch that the O-ring doesn't bulge out of its grove. This becomes more of a problem as the O-ring becomes older and stretches. If the O-ring is not set properly the top will not close correctly and water will spray out when the pump is restarted. The O-ring should be replaced if this is a recurring problem.

Step 19

TIGHTEN LOCKING KNOB - Hand tighten the locking knob clockwise.

Step 20

TURN POWER ON - Turn on power to the pool pump to repressurize the pool filter.

Step 21

CLOSE AIR RELIEF VALVE - The air relief valve should still be open. As the pressure builds, air will be released through the relief valve. When water starts to spray out of the valve, turn the valve clockwise to close it.

Step 22

CHECK PRESSURE GAUGE - Check the pressure gauge. It typically reads between 10 - 15 psi but this will vary according to the make of pool cartridge filter or its age.

Step 23

OBSERVE WATER FLOW - A cleaner filter will increase water flow. Your fountain water will be higher and the pool cleaner will move faster and will start climbing the wall again

Step 24

DUMP CLEANING SOLUTION -  Most codes will allow you to pour this solution down the driveway. Leave a hose on to dilute it more just to be sure.

Comments

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(1 to 6 of 6)

Inyopools  Posted: 04/04/2017 13:43 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

James - You need a container large enough to immerse the whole cartridge. You could have a container half the height of the cartridge and soak the cartridge half at a time but it would take twice as long.


James  Posted: 04/02/2017 15:54 PM 

Why wouldn't you just put the filter in the bucket mixed with TSP instead of pouring in a separate (Garbage pale) container?


Inyopools  Posted: 09/11/2016 14:28 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

chemically clean cartridge - Maybe use a chemical cleaner once or twice a season depending on use.


Anonymous  Posted: 09/10/2016 12:20 PM 

How often should you do this?


Anonymous  Posted: 07/03/2016 9:16 AM 

Thanks you so much. Very helpful


Anonymous  Posted: 06/22/2016 9:39 AM 

Thank you