A swimming pool is a place for fun, joy, and relaxation. When the temperature rises, there’s nothing as satisfying as wading into the cool waters of your pool. The thought of jumping into a pool with clear, blue, sparkling water on a hot day is enough to excite both kids and adults alike.
No one wants to have a bad experience at the pool, be it dirty water or an unpleasant smell, or even worse a skin rash or eye infection. This is the very reason why pool filters are a must for all pools, regardless if it is a commercial or residential one.
All pool owners are aware of pool filtration systems, but many may not know of the crucial role in keeping the pool clean and thereby safeguarding the health of swimmers. In today’s article, you will find all that you need to know about pre-filters and the other components of your pool filtration system.
So, without further delay, let’s dive in!
What are Pool Filters?
Pool Filters (also known as / called pool filtration systems) are special equipment and are part of your pool’s plumbing system. They remove impurities from the water using a physical barrier--usually fabric, sand, or diatomaceous earth. They help eliminate both dissolved contaminants and microorganisms from your pool water.
Types of Pool Filters
There are three types of pool filters. They are cartridge filter systems, sand filter systems, and DE filter systems. Each of these types of systems has their own pros and cons, but with regular maintenance, all three types of filters do an excellent job in keeping your pool free from debris and other contaminants.
How do Pool Filters Work?
The pump is the main component of the pools plumbing system, and its primary task is to move water through the pipes. It pulls water from the pool via the main drain and skimmer into the filter, and then pushes the filtered water back into the pool via the return pipes. This process repeats as long as the system is on.
Here’s a Step-by-Step Breakdown of Your Pools Filter System:
- Filtration starts when water is pulled from the pool into the skimmer and drains towards the filter.
- The skimmer (or strainer basket) acts as the first filter and removes large debris from the water, such as leaves, branches and bugs.
- Water is then sent to the primary filter. The cartridge, sand, or DE (media) traps and filters the dissolved contaminants and other microorganisms from the water.
- If there is a heating system, the filtered water is then sent through it, and heated to the set temperature.
- Water is then sent through the chlorinator and returned to the pool.
The Importance of Pre-Filters:
A possible drawback to the filtration process may be the need to change the filter cartridges more often due to the condition of the water. Some water (especially well water or hard water) has high levels of metals and minerals in it, leading to frequent Pleatco, Hayward, or Unicel filter cartridge replacements. This means you can be shelling out large sums of money since the pool filter cartridges wear out very quickly.
What if the Water is Pre-Filtered before you Add it to the Pool or Spa?
Sounds great, right? With rising contaminant levels in tap water, more and more pool and spa owners are adding a pre-filter to their filtration system.
What Does a Pre-Filter do?
As you can guess from the name, a pre-filter will filter the water before it reaches the pool or spa. A pre-filter is a small gadget that is connected to the water outlet (usually a garden hose).
When you use pre-filtered water to fill your pool or spa, most of the metal and mineral content is removed beforehand. This means less frequent cartridge replacements since the filter cartridge isn’t working as hard and it will last longer.
The Benefits of Including a Pre-Filter in your Filtration System:
- Pre-filtered water is easy to balance due to lower levels of metals and minerals.
- Pre-filtered water is softer and smoother.
- Pre-filters remove up to 80% of the fine dust and dirt that clogs the filtration system.
- Pre-filters reduce the frequency of cartridge cleaning or backwashing.
- Pre-filters reduce water consumption due to filtration systems working less.
- Pre-filters extend the life of your filter cartridges, meaning less replacement and cost savings.
- Pre-filters make is easier to clean your pool or spa as they reduce calcites and other minerals from the water before filling.
- Pre-filters dramatically reduce hard mineral deposits such as calcium, stains, and metals such as iron and copper.
- Pre-filters remove odors and other odor causing organics from tap water.
If you live in areas where the tap water is hard or if you are using well water, a pre-filter is an excellent option to make your pool or spa water clean and healthy.