Old Diatomaceous Earth?

by Barbara

Does DE have a shelf life? Last year and this year after adding DE we noticed that the pressure dropped. This year after bumping and turning the system back on, the DE flowed back into the pool and the pressure didn't raise.


Last year we cleaned the fingers with acid and it worked fine for a while and then the same thing happened. We're using DE that's about 3 years old.

Should we buy new DE?




Thanks for the question Barbara

To the best of my knowledge, swimming pool grade DE doesn't have a shelf life. I'm sure it might not be the best to use DE that 30 - 40 years old, but 3 years should be fine.

I went through so much DE when I did pools in Arizona that it never was an issue.

Concerning the DE that's going back into the pool through the returns, here are some posts to look over:

DE Filter..Low Pressure And No Suction At Skimmer

Low Jet Output

DE Pool Filters

DE Pool Filter Maintenance


With the filter pump running, slowly add about 1 pound of DE for every 10-12 square feet of filter space. Basically it's this: 48sf. DE filter = about 4 pounds of DE. (check your owner's manual for details and exact specifications)

I strongly urge you to get a DE scoop. This will give you the best measurement. If you have a DE scoop then 1 scoop = 1/2 lb of DE. By not putting enough DE back in the filter, you can damage the pool filter grids and cause poor filtration. Don't use a coffee can.

If you need immediate assistance (within 24 hrs) or for emergency personal assistance, you can make a donation of your choice and I'll answer your questions by phone.

Contact Me

Donation

Hope this helps and have a great Summer.

Robert

Click here to post comments

Return to DE Pool Filter Maintenance.

HELP! By Mistake I Put A Whole 25lb Bag Of DE In Skimmer

by Cindy
(New Hampshire)

By mistake I put a whole 25lb. bag of DE in pool skimmer. 1/2 then 4hrs later other 1/2.

Now everytime I turn off pump the DE is settling on pool liner. We backwashed twice and vacume everyday. Still getting it on liner. Just b4 adding DE we took apart the 8 filters and gave good cleaning.

I have a 20,000 gal. salt water pool.Pentair.

HELP PLEASE!




Thanks for the question Cindy

First thing is to leave the pump motor off, release the pressure inside the filter, and clean the grids once again. It's difficult to tell whether the grids are ripped or not. 95% of the time the girds are torn when you have DE going back into the pool.

You'll need to disassemble the grids and clean them once again, looking for any tears or rips. If any are torn they'll need to be replaced.

With the filter pump running, slowly add about 1 pound of DE for every 10-12 square feet of filter space. Basically it's this: 48sf. DE filter = about 4 pounds of DE. (check your owner's manual for details and exact specifications)

I strongly urge you to use a DE scoop. This will give you the best measurement. If you have a DE scoop then 1 scoop = 1/2 lb of DE. Make a slurry of DE in a bucket of pool water, then add to the skimmer. Don't use a coffee can or something similar.

DE Pool Filter Maintenance

After you do this you will need to vacuum. Try vacuuming to WASTE because if there's alot of DE on the bottom already, by vacuuming on FILTER the DE will adhere to the grids and possibly overload the system once more. Keep an eye on the water level and don't allow it to get below the skimmer. Best thing to do is to use a garden hose at one end of the pool and vacuum and fill at the same time.

Be sure the pump and skimmer baskets are clean. Also check the pump motor impeller and be sure it's free of debris. Turn the pump and breaker off. Remove the pump lid and basket and stick your fingers into the pump. The impeller should turn freely and there should be no debris in it.

If you need immediate assistance (within 24 hrs) or for emergency personal assistance, you can make a donation of your choice and I'll answer your questions by phone.

Contact Me

Donation

Hope this helps and have a great Summer.

Robert





Comment By Cindy
Date: May 27, 2012


Thank you so much Robert for taking the time to answer my question. We took apart the filter grids just before adding the DE (stupidly 25 lbs) cleaned all 8 filters, all filters in great condition! There was ALOT of DE sitting on top of the black thing that holds all the filters in place. So we hosed it off. Should we just keep vacuming?

I know the problem is just DE overload! And can this hurt us or the liner? Other than that we have a beautiful sparkling clear pool with all tests perfect. Knowing now that we don't have any rips in the filters do you have any other suggestions.

Should we keep backwashing & vacuming or just keep vacuming and hope all the excess will eventually be done leaking back into the pool.

Thanks so much.

Cindy




Comment By Robert
Date: May 27, 2012

Yes, the best thing to do is to keep vacuuming. Watch the pressure as well and don't allow it to get too high. Backwash once the pressure gets between 8 - 10psi over the "just backwashed" pressure.

Also be sure to coat the grids with fresh DE each time you backwash. I know it sounds counter-productive, but you need DE to get the DE out of the pool.

You can also vacuum to WASTE if your system is set up for that. This bypasses the filter but the pool water level drops quickly so you'll need to keep a hose in the pool.

Hope this helps and let me know how it turns out for you.

Robert

Click here to post comments

Return to DE Pool Filter Maintenance.

DE Filter & Sun Screen Lotion

by ED
(St. Petersburg, FL)

We have a DE Filter, live in Florida, no bird cage. In the summer the sun is on the pool until afternoon. We have 2 umbrellas for shade over 2 spots in the pool.

The grandchildren will be visiting for the next couple of weeks. They are toddlers and MUST use sunscreen. They are too little to stand under the umbrellas in 4 feet.

My husband's rule is NO SUNSCREEN IN POOL. Will the use of sunscreen hurt for a few weeks? If not, is there more preferred kind? They are not in the pool long and not even every day.

HELP!




Thanks for the question

As a rule for the YMCA pool, I've said for years absolutely nobody can get into the pool without taking a hot soapy shower. I've also told my pool customers in Arizona if at all possible keep any oils out of the pool. This includes body and hand lotions and sunscreens.

Obviously you know why. Oils clog up the filter and mess with the water chemistry.

If your grandchildren need to have sunscreen on, be sure it's a zinc oxide or chemical free such as titanium dioxide.

Best Sunscreen

Chemical Free Sunscreen

Jason and Burt's Bees make good sunscreens.

If it's only your grandchildren, there shouldn't be any long term residual effects on the filter clogging up. Temporary use of sunscreen shouldn't hurt too much, but try to keep the sunscreen use to a minimum but enough to protect your grandchildren.

To post a reply, or if you have a similar question, you can see your post on the Q&A page in the "DE Pool Filter" category.

Check back to this post for updates or answers.

If you need immediate assistance (within 24 hrs) or for emergency personal assistance, you can make a donation of your choice and I'll answer your questions by phone.

Contact Me

Donation

Hope this helps and have a great Summer.

Robert

Click here to post comments

Return to DE Pool Filter Maintenance.

swimming pool care, basic pool care, above ground pool maintenance, inground, salt water

Click Here To Learn How This eBook Can Save You TONS Of Time & Money

Click Here To Learn The Best Way To Clear Up Your Pool 

Recent Articles

  1. Rusty Iron Bolt Stain

    I have a dark brown iron stain from a rusty bolt that the kids threw in my cement pool.

    Read More

  2. How Long Does Can We Swim After Adding Muriatic Acid To Lower The pH Level?

    We added muriatic acid to our pool to lower the swimming pool pH level. I need to know how long after we added it to swim. Thanks for your question James

    Read More

  3. Foam In The Water..Swimming Pool..How To Get Rid Of..

    We have a 20x40 kidney shaped gunite pool. It was backed washed yesterday and some DE added. Pool water tested o.k. but towards the evening bubbly or

    Read More