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Backwashing a swimming pool’s filter pump

Most of the modern swimming pools which can be built nowadays rely on a specific type of filtering pump – the sand filter pump. This type of pump is easy to install, is low maintenance, is robust, and is reliable. These are all characteristics which make it the top choice for all swimming pool builders and their customers.

But however sturdy it may be, this type of filtering pump can also deteriorate and break down. And while it has a huge life expectancy, the sand inside it needs to be changed every 5 years or so. So how can you prolong the life of this essential feature? How can you make sure that you don’t have to change the actual pump for as long as possible? Well, first you need to identify the most probable problems which can appear.

Since this type of pump filters all the impurities in the water, the most obvious problem which may occur is clogging. However, in order to fix this problem of the sand filter pump you just need to do some backwashing – and that is all about it. As the name of the process suggests, backwashing is all about reversing the flow of water which comes through the pump.

Thus, instead of trapping the impurities, the pump releases them.

The first thing to do is to turn the circulation pump off, as well as the sand filter one. Then you need to turn the handle from filtering to backwashing. Then start the pumps again – in three minutes tops all the impurities will be released. Then repeat the same steps backwards and try the pump. If you notice that it doesn’t filter the impurities in a proper way, repeat the backwashing a couple of times more.

How do you notice that the impurities aren’t filtered, besides the checking out for the obvious? Well, if the water is clear when backwashing but it has a high pressure when the pump is filtering, then the problem didn’t go away. And if backwashing didn’t work the first three times, then another procedure needs to be done.

Changing the sand in the sand filter pump is also an easy task, which can be done without the assistance of a professional. However, now you will need some additional tools (such as a screwdriver, PVC glue, fittings, or even a hacksaw), as well as the correct type of sand – you will find what kind of sand needs to be used on the filter label. Additionally, you will also need gloves and long sleeves, for when scooping the sand out of the pump – this is due to the fibre glass in the pump.

And replacing the sand is as easy as it seems – open the pump (or use the hacksaw on it), scoop the sand, replace it, close the pump (or use PVC glue) and you will be good to go. In this way, by backwashing and changing the sand inside, you won’t need to change the pump itself.

The sand filter pump is an essential feature for a swimming pool. By paying attention to it, the water will always be crystal clear!

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