Cartridge filters require manual cleaning on a regular basis.
Most manufacturers recommend cleaning cartridges when the filter pressure rises 8-10 pounds above the start up/clean pressure. However, some filter's pressure won't go up even when the filter elements are filthy so... most pool professionals in Arizona recommend manually cleaning cartridge filters once every six months. After a few cleanings, you'll learn more about the pool and how dirty the filter is becoming and can vary the cleaning intervals.
Here are a few pictures from a recent filter cleaning job completed in Mesa, Arizona.
The manual cleaning process takes somewhere between an hour and two hours depending on how dirty the filter is, how many elements are being cleaned, and how large the elements are.
When a pool has been green for a long time - more than 6 months - the interior is coated with a green algae slime that is often crusted onto the pool interior. To remove it, you can complete a pressure wash, acid wash, or chlorine bath. In most cases, an initial pressure wash removes most of the algae slime. I'm posting photos of a recent job showing an interior pressure wash and the results.
Pool is drained... and stained.
The spa is pretty dirty too!
Beginning to pressure wash.
And more washing...
And still more pressure washing...inch by inch. This job took us about three hours.
Acid washing a pool is a procedure to apply a diluted acid mixture to pool plaster striping away dirty and stained plaster. Because the process removes a layer of the plaster it isn't something that should be done every year but rather two to three times during the normal life of the plaster which is typically about 15 years.
Pool is drained here and ready to be cleaned.
Note the staining on the walls...
Touching up some spots with a fine grit sand paper.
This job was interesting due to the extreme nature of the algae coating the pool interior - some of it was almost black. The interior pressure wash really took some time and we had to go over each inch of the interior.
Swimming Pool is Completely Green - Almost Black...
Pool Has Been Drained...
Having Some Fun While Pressure Washing Interior of Pool
Interior Pressure Wash is Complete!
Waterline cleaning is almost done expect for this last patch in the middle...
This tile cleaning job by Pool Service Queen Creek was completed in about two hours. It was a tough job only because our clients didn't want to replace the pool water. This isn't a problem with the process we use to clean pool tiles as we use a mildly abrasive water blasting stream to clean calcium and scum off pool tiles.
The media we use is water-soluble and pH neutral so the cleanup takes about an hour once the process is complete. However, our process requires someone to physically get into the swimming pool to operate the pressure washer. And the water temperature is about 60 degrees right now. I only have before and after pictures of this job as I completed it by myself.
Before Picture of Steps - Viewed from the back of the pool.
This pool cleanup was a complete pool rehab job in Queen Creek, Arizona performed by our Pool Service Queen Creek division. We drained the pool, mucked out all the nasty stuff, pressure washed the pool's interior, cleaned the pool tile with our mild abrasive water blasting method, filled the pool, repaired the pool equipment, and completed the start up procedures! The work took two days with a day in between to fill the pool.
This is an all tile pool so the end result is spectacular!