Does your pool need to be backwashed is a question that the swimming pool contractors from Hiel Pool Services in Rancho Bernardo, CA are asked by their customers quite regularly. If you aren’t certain what the purpose of backwashing a pool are, how often it needs to be done and whether it’s a do-it-yourself project, read on!

At its most basic, backwashing a pool means that your contractor will be performing a thorough cleaning of the pool’s filter by reversing the flow of water through it. This works to flush out contaminants and means you don’t have to manually clean the filter. This backwashing process doesn’t take long, but it does use copious amounts of water.

Does your pool need to be backwashed?

Your pool contractor, or you — if you’re doing the pool maintenance on your own — will know when it’s necessary to backwash the filter when the pressure gauge indicates a rise in pressure of eight to ten pounds above the start-up or “clean” pressure.

If you are using a diatomaceous earth (DE) pool filter, it will need to be backwashed if you notice any dirt in the pool. The reasons for the dirt showing up in the pool are varied but could include:

  1. A broken manifold
  2. Damaged backwash valves
  3. Danaged backwash gaskets
  4. Damaged cartridges

Maintenance of the DE filter will help prevent any of these actions from occuring, but it needs to be on your radar.

When a filter needs to be backwashed, here are some of the many steps that you, or your pool contractor, will go through to complete the process:
  • Turn the pump off
  • Turn the backwash valve on to the “backwash” setting
  • Turn the pump on again
  • Alternate between “backwash” and “rinse” for several rotations. Remember to turn the pump off every time you change the valve settings
  • Once the backwashing is complete, drain the filter. If you need to more thoroughly clean the filter, you need to remove the drain plug.