How to Replace D.E. in a D.E. Pool Filter


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Follow our simple guide to backwash your D.E. filter and replace the D.E. powder.

Things You'll Need

Step by Step


Step 1

Always remember to turn off power to the equipment before moving backwash valve.

Step 2

Roll out backwash hose (if applicable) and straighten.

Step 3

Place backwash handle into backwash position. Piston type will have a lock pin or will need to be twisted to unlock, dial type (multiport) valves will have a handle that may need to be pushed down before moving (continue all movement in one direction only, or you may damage the internal spider gasket). Other valves may be located under the filter with a lever to move.

Step 4

Turn the pump back on.

Step 5

Run system in backwash mode until 1-2 minutes after sight glass is clear. You will lose water from the pool. This is actually good because you'll empty stressed out water and replace it with untreated water.

Step 6

Turn off pump again.

Step 7

Return valve (or lever) back to filter position.

Step 8

Turn pump back on. Release air (from the air release valve) until water dispenses and then close air valve.

Step 9

Add the correct amount of D.E. to the skimmer closest to the equipment. Refer to the owners manual for the filter for manufacturer's recommended amount of D.E.


(1 to 15 of 15)

 Posted: 11/14/2019 

Will it damage my St. Augustine grass if I backwash onto it? I don't want to backwash into the street because the neighbors do not like all that white/green residue that is discharged on the pavement.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 11/14/2019 

Hello Rich - In our experience, the D.E. does not damage the grass. However, high chlorine levels will harm St. Augustine grass.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 2/26/2017 

Charlie - The Waterway Crystal Water DE Filter has three models: 36 sq ft, 48 sq ft and 60 sq ft. The lengths of each of the models' grids are different. Model 36 grids are 18" long. Model 48 grids are 24 " long. Model 60 grids are 31" long. Here's a link to the Waterway Crystal Water DE Filter parts.

 Posted: 2/21/2017 

The sun has baked the info label off my filter. The spec sheet was for a different filter. I found a label in the back for a Crystal Water filter by Waterway. I need new screens in the filter, but I don't know what size it is. Is there a way to find out?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/2/2016 

blown filter - My first guess is that your pump is much larger than your filter can handle. If not check the amount of DE required. If you put too much in, it can completely block the grids, and if your filter's breather tube is blocked, it can create back pressure in your tank.

Anonymous  Posted: 6/30/2016 

can any one tell me why i would have blown the sides out of my fillter? I added 8 cups to it as they recomended not sure what to do from here

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 5/9/2016 

JL - Sounds like what you may have to do for a small pool. You may be running the backwash too long?? 1-2 minutes should be enough.

 Posted: 5/7/2016 

should I fill my pool up to the top with water in order to get a good backwash? otherwise it goes down lower than the skimmer.
5000 gallon pool with Pentair 60 filter. Thank you!


InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/15/2015 

Amy - It sounds like the spider gasket in your multiport valve may be damaged and is letting water flow where it shouldn't. See our guide on "How to Replace a Spider Gasket on a Multiport Valve" for more information. Remember to turn the pump off any time you move the MPV handle and to depress the handle all the way down before you move it.

 Posted: 7/13/2015 

I successfully backwashed and replaced the DE, but now I am getting water in my backwash hose even when the multi-port valve is on FILTER mode. I replaced the multi-port valve about 6 months ago, so I don't think that should be the problem. Any suggestions?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/1/2014 

Brian - Check to make sure you don't have any tears in your grids.

 Posted: 6/30/2014 

I have a purex triton fns filter. I always get DE back in the pool when I clean it. I've tried several ways to stop it, but 9 times outta 10 it flows right back into the pool about an hour or so after I'm done cleaning it.

 Posted: 7/9/2013 

Don't you need to rinse following the backwash prior to returning to filter and adding the de?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/9/2013 

release pressure on DE filter - I discussed this with a DE filter manufacturer and he said most DE filters have a release pressure valve. If yours doesn't, it must be self-purging.

Anonymous  Posted: 6/3/2013 

Could you please tell me how to release pressure on a DE filter, that does not have a pressure release valve?

Thank you!