How To Upgrade an Intex Pool Pump and Filter System

Written by:  Danny Rhodehamel

You bought an Intex Pool last year and your water flow is way down, water is not clear and the Intex salt chlorine generator won't work because the water flow is below the working threshold. You tried everything including replacing a less than year old pump and filter system. Maybe it's time to look at replacing the Intex pump and filter with a better quality but affordable pump and filter set. For Intex pools less than 15,000 gallons, we are recommending Game Sand Pro 50 Filter System. It is more durable that the Intex filter-pump system and very reasonably priced.

Tips & Warnings

Step by Step

Step 1

Buy Game Sand Pro 50 Filter System •For pools up to 15,000 US gallons •Ultra quiet and easy to use •Self priming pump •INTEX® 2 ¼ " hose adapters included •Conventional 32mm, 1 ¼ " and 1 ½ " hose fittings included •7 position multi-port valve •Accurate and easy-to-read pressure gauge •Hair and lint strainer basket •Integrated base plate •Requires 38 lbs of #20 silica sand (not included) •Compatible with alternative sand products •Operates on 110v/60Hz •1 year limited warranty

Step 2

Buy Sand - No. 20 Silica Sand: 4510 – You will need 38 pounds. Sand is generally sold in 50 pound bags.

Step 3

Gather tools and other required equipment: • #2 Phillips Screwdriver. • Rubber Mallet. • A tube of silicone based lubricant. • One 1½ inch backwash hose long enough to drain away from pump. • A GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) Plug. If not currently installed.

Step 4

When you receive your Game Sand Pro 50 Filter System, check that you have all the parts listed in the owner's manual. Note This Game Sand Pro 50 Filter System is designed to connect to pools with standard 1¼” or 1½” diameter hose connectors and has 2¼” hose adapters for Intex pools.

Step 5

Unplug the existing Intex pump. Note: the Intex pump has a GFCI built into its plug. If your power box does not have a GFCI, install one before you plug in the new pump. If you are unfamiliar with GFCI circuits, have a qualified electrician install the GFCI.

Step 6

Shut off water hoses from the skimmer and to the return port using the Intex shut off valves. This is the shut off valve for the hose to the pump. You will also have to shut off the valve at the hose returning to the pool.

Step 7

Disconnect the two hoses coming into and out of the Intex pump at the pump ports.

Step 8

Remove the Intex pump and filter

Step 9

If the Intex pump and filter set was not placed on a level hard surface, construct that surface now. We used to large patio pavers.

Step 10

Start assembling your new Game Sand Pro 50 Filter System by securing the water pump to the base plate. Use mounting hardware provided. The flat washer and lock washer go under the wingnut with the lock washer between the flat washer and the wingnut.

Step 11

On the output port of the pump (middle top) place the 2 1/4" O-ring in the groove and lubricate it lightly with a silicon based lubricant like Magic Lube.

Step 12

Screw the base of the filter-pump hose into the output port.

Step 13

On the input port of the pump (outside top) remove the threaded ring (collar) off the port. Check to see that the strainer basket is inside the port.

Step 14

Place the 3" O-ring in the groove around top of the hair and lint strainer basket. Lubricate the O-ring lightly.

Step 15

Place the transparent hair & lint strainer cover in place and then screw the threaded ring (collar) back on securely over the cover

Step 16

Insert O-ring inside the outward facing opening of the transparent hair & lint strainer cover. Lubricate lightly.

Step 17

Pull the bottom strainer out of the tank. Remove any debris of spare parts and replace the strainer making sure it is set in properly.

Step 18

Insert the tank separator plate inside the main tank in the guides provided. The plate divides the tank into two compartments, the Filtered Water Chamber and the Sand Filter Chamber. Ensure it is place all the way down into the bottom groove.

Step 19

Place the base plate and pump on the level hard surface next to your pool.

Step 20

Place the filter tank on the base plate with the feet inserted into the base plate.

Step 21

Fill the sand chamber half full of water. Once the take is filled, it should not be moved. Make sure this is where you what to place the filter-pump.

Step 22

Fill the sand filter chamber with sand. Be careful not to get any sand in the filtered water chamber.

Step 23

Only fill the sand chamber to the "FILL" line marked on the partition.

Step 24

In preparation for assembling the filter tank, inspect the tank O-ring and ensure that it has no cracks or flat spots.

Step 25

Wipe any sand or debris out of the groove on top of the tank.

Step 26

Place the tank O-ring securely into the groove. Note: this may take two people to do. Lightly lubricate the top of the O-ring.

Step 27

Locate the upper distributor and press it into the center hole located under the tank cover.

Step 28

Carefully place the tank cover onto the filter tank. The tank cover should be oriented as shown so that the notch on the cover is aligned with the matching tab on the filter tank – this ensures proper alignment.

Step 29

Use the tank cover lock ring to secure the tank cover and filter tank. Make certain that the head of the hinge pin is facing up on the ring assembly. The insert shows a picture of the head of the hinge pin.

Step 30

Align the bolt with the receiving hole and squeeze the gap closed as far as you can. Hand tighten knob.

Step 31

Use a rubber mallet to tap around the ring for a better fit. Hand tighten the ring again. You may have to do this a couple of times to get the ring completely on. Have someone push on the opposite side of the tank as you are hammering.

Step 32

Connect the free end of the filter-pump hose to the filter tank by first lightly lubricating the tank intake port on the tank cover then attaching the hose to the port. Secure the hose with a hose clamp.

Step 33

The next step is to attach the filter-pump to the pool skimmer hose. Make sure the O-ring is still inserted into the transparent strainer and screw the short Intex adapter into the strainer.

Step 34

Now attach the pool skimmer hose to the short adapter with a flat gasket placed between the hose nut and the strainer adapter.

Step 35

To attach the pool return hose to the filter discharge port, first lightly lubricate the small O-ring and place it inside the long Index adapter. Then screw the adapter onto the pool return port on the filter. Note: If you find that this fitting leaks, you have to wind 4-5 layers of plumber's tape around the threads of the filter return port.

Step 36

With a flat gasket inserted between the adapter and the face of the hose, screw the pool return hose onto the adapter. Note: as above, if this joining leaks, you have to wind plumber's tape on the threads of the long adapter.

Step 37

Note that his pool system includes an Intex Salt Chlorine Generator between the filter-pump and the pool. The connection from the filter is the same. You will just be connecting to the Intex hose from the SCG instead of the pool. The connection fittings are the same.

Step 38

Attach a length of pipe onto the waste port which is opposite the filters return post just connected. This hose is just force fit onto the waste port.

Step 39

Open shut off valves

Step 40

Rotate the valve to position "4", Backwash. Plug in power to pump

Step 41

Check for leaks

Step 42

Turn off power to the pump.

Step 43

This is a picture of the fully assembled and installed Game Sand Pro 50 Filter System with a Intex Salt Chlorine Generator in the background.

Step 44

The new sand should be cleaned of dust and very small sand particles that will get past the bottom strainer. For instruction on cleaning the sand, see our guide and How To Operate the Game Sand Pro 50 Filter System.

Comments (1 to 4 of 4)

Add Comment

User: Inyopools

Peter - Reducing the pump's input or output from 1 1/2" to 1 1/4" will not damage the pump. And the input and output ports on the filter are 1 1/2".

User: Peter

Thank you for your prompt reply!
What if the pump outlet is 1 1/2" and the Intex swimming pool is 1 1/4"; I assume this will reduce the effective use of the pump/filter, but is there a risk of damaging the pump as it will be forcing the water through a much small connection, no?
What is the outlet size of the S180T92? 1 1/2"?
Thank you again

User: Inyopools

Peter - The Hayward S180T92S pump/filter system will work on your 12' x 30" pool and will accommodate upgraded pools to 21'.

User: Peter

Hi, we have a small 12'x30" Intex which we might upgrade later. Will a Hayward S180T92S work? Is there a risk that the pump/filter is too big? Thanks in advance!

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Tips & Warnings

If you have an Intex pool larger than 15,000 gallons, consider the larger Game Sand Pro 75 Filter System, which has a 3/4 HP motor, a larger sand filter and can handle pools up to 20,000 gallons.

Please Note:

Inyo Pool Products is not responsible for any injury or damaged equipment
while using our guides. Using our guides is doing so at your own risk.
These guides are suggested use of your pool or spa equipment and may vary
depending on which product you are using.