A clean pool is a happy pool, which makes for a happy pool owner. Properly maintaining your sand filter can help you keep that water sparkling. Poolman recommends replacing the sand every 3-5 years as it loses its grain and becomes smooth and ineffective. In the meantime, there are steps the pool owner can take to keep the filter functioning properly.
Wash and rinse
Before beginning, it's important that you shut off the filter's pump motor. Your sand filter is connected to a multi-port valve that you should familiarize yourself with. The regular setting for filters is "filter" according to Clean Pool and Spa. When it's time for a cleaning, turn the setting to backwash. The water will enter the filter to remove dirt and various junk from the filter, then the dirty water will be released.
The next step is to turn the setting to "rinse," which will clean whatever remains in the filter, then release the water as waste rather than sending it back into the pool. You'll then want to set the valve to "recirculate" which will circulate the water throughout the pool without putting it through the sand filter.
Keep it clean in between
According to Aqua Magazine, filters are often the scapegoat for dirty pool water, when it's usually the pool owner's lack of vigilance that's causing the filter to under-perform. Additionally, filters are sometimes overwhelmed by the amount of unwanted materials in the pool such as hair, dirt or sunblock/suntan lotion.
One of the tips offered is to add a coagulating agent to the water. This will cause the debris in the water to latch onto one another forming blobs that sink to the bottom for easy clean up. Some of the steps to a clean pool are obvious, such as making sure people shower before entering the pool and keeping the pool covered when it's not in use.
Follow these simple step to a clean pool and remember to call a Poolman representative when it's time to change the sand.