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purplegirl
07-05-2010, 12:14 PM
what type of sand does a sand filter use? can i use anything? or does it have to be special pool sand?

waterbear
07-05-2010, 12:48 PM
You need pool sand. Other types of sand are not going to filter properly and might really cloud the pool if they are not de-dusted. Play sand and building sand are not filter sand. Sand is cheap and lasts so don't try and save a few pennies here.

purplegirl
07-05-2010, 01:25 PM
Thanks waterbear. My neighbor, who got rid of his pool last year, gave us his sand filter and pump. I've been reading on here that you can have a pump that has too much horsepower. I don't know the size of the filter (holds 6 bags of sand) or pump. I want to know if it is possible to have too large a filter for a pool (my pool is 5000 gallons) and what would happen if the pump I have is too large for my pool? Can it hurt? These were free and I would hate to not be able to use them, especially considering my pool is green and will be for the foreseeable future.

waterbear
07-05-2010, 01:51 PM
too big a pump can cause problems for a filter but if they are matched it should not be that much of a problem. 300 lbs of sand does not sound like a hugh filer so you should be ok. You might also need some pea gravel to cover the laterals.
post the make/model number of the pump and of the filter (they are not the same) If this is a skidpack (both on one one base) then there would be a make/model for that also possibly.

purplegirl
07-05-2010, 02:46 PM
We emptied the old sand out of the filter and there was no pea gravel at the bottom, it's possible the old owners neglected to put it in there. Should we put pea gravel down there, would it help?

unfortunetly all discrimenating labels have long worn off both pump and filter. There is a plate attached to the pump with a number. I am having a problem downloading a picture. The numbers on the pump read COL1081PSC motor RU, I'm sorry I can't give you more info.

waterbear
07-05-2010, 02:55 PM
We emptied the old sand out of the filter and there was no pea gravel at the bottom, it's possible the old owners neglected to put it in there. Should we put pea gravel down there, would it help?

unfortunetly all discrimenating labels have long worn off both pump and filter. There is a plate attached to the pump with a number. I am having a problem downloading a picture. The numbers on the pump read COL1081PSC motor RU, I'm sorry I can't give you more info.

all the number you gave means is the motor meets UL 1081 for pool motors and that it is most likely a Marathon PSC series motor, which can be anything from 1/2 HP to 5 HP! Is there no name or numbers visible anywhere on the pump or filter? Even a partial one could help.

Is this a 'skid pack' from an above ground pool or a separate filter and pump? How big a pool was it on?

Not all manufacturers recommend pea gravel on the bottom of the filter but i feel it's a good idea to cover the laterals with pea gravel (and many other people in the biz feel the same).
http://www.poolforum.com/pf2/showthread.php?t=6485&highlight=gravel
http://www.poolforum.com/pf2/showpost.php?p=1355&postcount=5
http://www.poolforum.com/pf2/showpost.php?p=42326&postcount=8

purplegirl
07-05-2010, 11:21 PM
well after three trips to the dreaded pool store, we completely gave up on this filter and pump. after we replaced one part another broke, literally, this happened three times. (that's what you get for a free filter :)) I'm returning all of the parts we bought and looking into a new or like new filter/pump. I just hope this ultimetly helps. the water company told me my main water line is a galvenized pipe and that it would probably cost about a grand to replace. i am at my witts end. but i am determined and stubborn so we'll say where this all goes. thanks waterbear!

Watermom
07-06-2010, 08:18 AM
Make sure that your pump and filter size that you buy is a good match size-wise.

purplegirl
07-06-2010, 09:20 AM
I don't know anything about buying filters. I have sand so I know I want a sand filter. I am probably going to get a 1 horsepower pump, but the rest I'm not sure about. How important is the "gpm" as well as the size of the filter, the amount of sand it can hold. There are a couple on craigslist I'm thinking about. One is a hayward S166T. It only holds 100lbs of sand and is 35 gpm. The other filter I haven't gotten specs on yet. Please help I'm clueless. and I desperatly want to clear my green pool!

AnnaK
07-06-2010, 10:47 AM
I didn't know anything about pumps and filters either when we first planned our pool project. I went to four different pool stores and asked questions. I learned about types of filters: sand, DE, cartridge and how each is cleaned. I learned about pump sizes, 1-speed or 2-speed, HP, GPM, head, turnover . . .

My approach was to request information about a filtration system for a 12,500 gallon AGP. I said I didn't have the pool yet, was just beginning my education, and was starting out with the peripherals, the equipment, could they please help me select something appropriate. Everyone was very helpful and informative. I was, after all, a prospective customer.

This did take a little time and I realize you're under some constraints since your present system isn't working right, but if you can spend three evenings after work at three different pool stores asking questions and looking at systems you'll come away knowing a whole lot.

I selected a 1 1/2 HP 2-speed pump and a 19" sand filter. This has worked out extremely well. The pump runs on low speed for 7 hours during the night when the rates are lower by 45%. The sand in it is now in its 5th season. We replace the spider gasket each year and that's all the maintenance, other than the occasional backwash/rinse, it has ever needed.

IMO, this kind of research needs to be done hands-on in addition to reading about it on Websites and boards.

Watermom
07-06-2010, 11:48 AM
Anna,
I'm glad you have been happy with your pump/filter set up. A 1-1/2 hp pump is a BIG pump for a 12,500 gallon pool. Overkill really. My pool is about the same size. I initially had a 1hp pump but it was more than I needed. When I changed it a few years ago, Poconos (our resident pump expert) selected a 1/2 hp inground full-rated pump for my pool and it has been fine. Saves me energy costs and is plenty pump for my pool. I also have a 200# sand filter. I have never had to change anything in my filter. The fact that you are having to change your spider gasket every year makes me wonder if the big 1-1/2 hp pump is damaging your filter. I dunno. I'm not the pump expert around here. Just wondering.

Purplegirl -- with a small 5000 gallon pool, you need a small pump. Anna's suggestion about visiting and talking at various pool places is a good idea except that pool stores are notorious for suggesting people buy pumps that are too big for their pools. Just be aware of this. I don't know my pumps but with that small of a pool, I can't imagine needing more than 1/2 hp. Do they make smaller than that? Your pool won't need too big. This is a case of bigger is NOT better.

purplegirl
07-06-2010, 11:55 AM
The reason I haven't gone to the pool stores by me (there are only 2) is because everyone that works there is totally incompetent, there are no mom and pop pool shops near me so I have to rely on the franchises. If I went in there and said I need something that will be strong enough to clear my green water. They would try selling me an algecide.

Also, I couldn't go in there and ask questions on a hypothetical because they all know I have a pool already. Also I am most likely going to buy a used filter and pump because new they are very expensive and my current pool, filter and pump only cost me a total of $500. So basically I am left with what I can find in my budget and hope that it helps my current situation.

CarlD
07-06-2010, 12:55 PM
PG:

The most important thing is to make sure the filter is big enough for the pump.

I cannot imagine you needing anything bigger than 1/2 hp--even a 1/2 hp up-rated (for AG pools) should be EASILY adequate, and a 1/3 hp just as good.

You can call the pool pump companies and ask for their advice on their products. For example, Hayward makes an above-ground 1/2 hp and an above-ground 2 speed 1 hp.

They also make a small sand filter and pump combo (the S144) that sells for about $375. That might be ideal.

AnnaK
07-06-2010, 04:08 PM
Anna,
I'm glad you have been happy with your pump/filter set up. A 1-1/2 hp pump is a BIG pump for a 12,500 gallon pool. Overkill really. My pool is about the same size. I initially had a 1hp pump but it was more than I needed. When I changed it a few years ago, Poconos (our resident pump expert) selected a 1/2 hp inground full-rated pump for my pool and it has been fine. Saves me energy costs and is plenty pump for my pool. I also have a 200# sand filter. I have never had to change anything in my filter. The fact that you are having to change your spider gasket every year makes me wonder if the big 1-1/2 hp pump is damaging your filter. I dunno. I'm not the pump expert around here. Just wondering.


The pump runs on the LOW setting nearly all the time except when I vacuum or backwash rinse. LOW settings on a 2-speed pump use 1/4 of the power as do single speed pumps. I'm no math wizard and don't know if the relationship is linear but it's possible that this setup uses less energy than a 1-speed 1/2 hp pump does.

Spider gaskets are inexpensive and we don't mind doing the maintenance. We look at it like we do oil changes on the cars: every 2,500 miles, whether they need it or not :)

purplegirl
07-07-2010, 04:13 PM
I think I'm going to buy a new filter and pump and skip the used route. But I don't know if bigger is better when it comes to the filter. I know a few of you say I probably only need a 14" filter, but with my pool problems might bigger be better as long as I still have a 1/2 to 1 hp pump.

There is a 16" for slightly more money, but is it overkill or will it clear my water faster?

I don't want you all to think I am not taking your advice, I am. It's just that I don't have the money to buy something that isn't going to work the way I hope it will. Is it a matter of anything would be better than my little intex cartridge filter?

Watermom
07-07-2010, 08:30 PM
It is ok to have a big filter. You just don't want too big of a pump.

purplegirl
07-07-2010, 08:57 PM
Thanks watermom. I am looking at a few filters and pumps: hayward, pentair, waterway, fibropool, blue line, etc...

I think hayward is the big name in filters but are the others okay or are they inferior in quality?

purplegirl
07-08-2010, 11:26 AM
I found a hayward s180t with a 1hp pump system (i know the pump is on the bigger side) used 1 season on craigslist for $250. I am going to purchase it and cross my fingers that nothing is wrong with it.

Right now I run my 2000gph filter/pump 24/7, if I ran the new filter/pump 24/7 in the beginning to clean out the pool would I burn down the motor? I don't plan to let it run like that for the whole season but for now I want the pool to be filtered as good as possible. I still haven't swam in it yet even through the heat wave we've been having in NY.