A pool filter is a mechanical filtration device used to remove suspended particles from water.
Pool filters are used in many swimming pools to keep water clear and clean. Water typically flows to the filter through the main drain, is cleaned as it flows through the filter and is then returned to the pool through the return inlets.
Once the water has been filtered, the remaining dirt or debris adheres to the filter media and is periodically backwashed with clean water which is discharged down the waste line of the filter system.
Three main types of filter media are commonly used to filter pool water; sand, diatomaceous earth and cartridge.
Sand filters employ a thick bed of special grade sand to filter water. Sand filters are commonly the least expensive filter system to purchase and install, and are usually the easiest to maintain.
Diatomaceous Earth filters also employ a deep bed of filter media to strain water. Diatomaceous earth is a naturally occurring silica based mineral that is ground into a fine powder. This powder is micronized to a size similar to that of a grain of sand and is used as the filter media in these filters. Diatomaceous earth filters are more expensive than their sand filter counterparts, but they offer a significant advantage in the area of filtration. Diatomaceous earth filters are capable of removing particles that are smaller in size then the sand grains of a comparable sand filter.
Cartridge filters are a relatively new type of filter that are rapidly gaining popularity. A cartridge filter consists of a large diameter central element which is made of a fine mesh pleated material. Water is drawn through the central element via water pressure. Cartridge filters offer the benefit of being able to filter very fine particles with minimal maintenance. In a typical cartridge filter system, the cartridge element is removed from the filter housing and thoroughly rinsed clean with a garden hose. Operation Whether the pool filter employs sand, diatomaceous earth or cartridge media, the basic operational procedure is the same. Water flows through the filter media, trapping particulates and removing them from the water. Once dirt and debris have accumulated on the filter media to a certain point, the filter must be cleaned through a process called backwashing. During backwashing, water is forced through the media bed in the opposite direction and removes particulate from the media bed. The result of backwashing is a clean filter media bed that is ready to resume normal filtration.
What Exactly Are Pool Filter Pressure Gauges: Explained
For example, if you have a 10-foot x 12-foot pool and your pool filter has an 8-inch diameter, you would multiply these two numbers to find out how many gallons of water are being filtered every hour.
The result will tell you how much pressure is being applied to your pool filter (see also ‘How To Backwash Your Swimming Pool Filter‘).
If you want to know how much pressure is actually being applied to your pool’s filter, you must divide the total amount of pressure by 60 seconds.
For example, if the total amount of pressure is 1,000 PSI and the period is 60 seconds, then the actual pressure applied to your pool’s filters is 1,000/60 16.7 PSI.
The higher the PSI value, the better the quality of your pool water.
However, too high of a PSI can damage your pool’s pump and other pool equipment parts.
What Should The Reading Of Your Pool Filter Pressure Gauge Be?
Your pool filter pressure gauge should always be between 30 and 50 PSI.
If you see any readings above 50 PSI, there could be several reasons why.
One reason may be that your pool filter needs to be replaced. Another reason could be that your pool’s skimmer (see also ‘What Is A Pool Skimmer Weir?’)basket is clogged with debris.
If you notice that your pool filter pressure gauge is consistently over 50 PSI, it may be time for you to replace your pool filter.
What Factors Affect Your Pool Filter Pressure Gauge Reading?
There are a few factors that affect your pool filter (see also ‘How Much DE To Add To Your Pool Filter?’) pressure gauge reading. These include but are not limited to:
• The age of your pool filter. Older pools require more frequent cleaning than newer models. As a result, they tend to produce less water flow.
• The type of filter used in your pool. Some types of filters are designed to clean water faster than others.
• How often you use your pool. If you only use your pool once or twice a week, then you won’t need as large of a filter as someone who uses their pool multiple times each day.
• The amount of water flowing through your pool. A larger volume of water will increase the amount of pressure being applied to your pool filters.
When Should You Replace Your Pool Filter Pressure Gauge?
You should replace your pool filter pressure gauge at least once a year, but it’s recommended that you replace your pool filter pressure gauges every three months.
It’s also recommended that you replace your filter after each season so that you don’t risk damaging your pool pump.
However, if you notice that your pool’s filter is not performing as well as it used to, you may want to consider replacing your pool filter sooner than that.
This way, you won’t have to worry about your pool pump failing because of excessive pressure.
What Happens If Your Pool Pressure Is Too High?
If your pool filter pressure gauge reading is too high, there could be several possible causes.
For example, one cause might be that your pool filter cartridge is damaged. Another possibility is that your pool filter is not properly installed.
A high-pressure reading can cause a number of issues, including :
• Damage to your pool pump
• Damage to your plumbing lines
• A loss of power to your pool pump
To avoid these problems, make sure that your pool filter pressure reading is below 50 PSI.
A high-pressure reading is considered anything above this level.
To lower your pool filter pressure gauge level, you may need to replace your pool filter cartridge.
When Should You Change A Pool Filter Cartridge?
The lifespan of a pool filter cartridge depends on how much water flows through your pool.
You’ll need to change your pool filter cartridge when it becomes worn out.
Your pool filter cartridge will show its wear when its performance decreases.
For example, if you notice that the water flow rate has decreased by half, you’ll know that it’s time to replace your pool filter cartridges.
Your pool filter cartridge will also begin to show signs of wear and tear if you leave it in place for an extended period of time, but some are designed to last longer than others.
What Happens If Your Pressure Is Reading Too Low?
A low pool filter pressure reading can be caused by several factors, including :
• Dirty or clogged pool filter cartridges
• Overly large amounts of dirt in the pool
• An improperly sized pool filter
To prevent a low pool filter pressure reading, you need to ensure that your pool filter is working correctly.
A low-pressure reading can cause several issues, including:
- Damage to your pool pump
- Damage to your pool plumbing system
- Loss of power to your pool pumps
A low-pressure reading is considered anything below 50 PSI. If your pressure reading is too low, you’ll need to take action immediately.
To increase your pressure reading, you may need to add additional water to your pool.
Pool Filter Air Pressure Release Valve: Explained
A pool filter air pressure release valve relieves excess pressure from your pool filter.
This helps prevent damage to your pool’s filter and your pool pump (see also ‘ The Best Pool Pumps Of Every Speed ‘).
There are different types of pool filter air pressure release valves available today. Some of them are manual, while others are automatic.
Manual Pool Filter Air Pressure Release Valves: Manual pool filter air pressure release valves are typically made out of plastic. They’re easy to install, and they require no maintenance.
Automatic Pool Filter Air Pressure Release Valve (AFAPRV): Automatic pool filter air pressure release valves are typically made out of metal. They’re more expensive than their manual counterparts, but they last longer and require less maintenance.
When Should You Install A Pool Filter Air Pressure Release Valve?
The best time to install a pool filter air pressure release valve is when you first install your pool filters.
Installing a pool filter air pressure relief valve before installing your pool filters will help protect your pool pumps and other components from being damaged.
You should also check your pool filter air pressure release values once every year to ensure that they’re still functioning correctly.
How To Replace Your Pool Filter Pressure Gauge
Is it time to replace your pool filter pressure gauge? Let’s look at a simple way to get the job done.
Step 1 – Open Up The Back Of Your Pool Filter Pressure Gauges
The first step when replacing your pool filter pressure gauge involves opening up the back of your pool filter pressure gauge.
Open up the back of your filter pressure gauge using one of the following methods :
• Unscrew the bottom screws holding the back panel together
• Pry off the back panel with a screwdriver
• Use a pry bar
Step 2 – Remove Your Old Pool Filter Pressure Gauge
Once you’ve opened up the back of your old pool filter pressure gauge, remove it using one of the following techniques :
• Pull the old pool filter pressure gauge off of its mounting bracket
• Pry off the old pool filter pressure gauges’ mounting bracket
• Use a prying tool
Step 3 – Install New Pool Filter Pressure Gauge On The Mounting Bracket
After removing your old pool filter pressure gauge, place it on top of your new pool filter pressure gauge.
Then, slide the new pool filter pressure gauge into position on the back of your pool’s filter cartridge.
Step 4 – Close Up The Back Of Your New Pool Filter Pressure Gauges
When installing your new pool filter pressure gauges, close up the back of the gauges to ensure water doesn’t leak through.
The Bottom Line
Reading your pool filter’s pressure gauge is an essential maintenance task, but thankfully, it doesn’t have to be a difficult one.
We hope this article has helped you learn how to read your pressure gauge correctly and given you the knowledge to keep your pool running smoothly!