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GLOSSARY OF FILTRATION
TERMINOLOGY

How Cartridge Filters Work


We at E-Pool Products want you to be knowledgeable about your pool or spa filtration systems.
With that in mind we offer the following Glossary of Filtration Terms.

Backwash: The process of cleaning the filter medium or septum by reversing the flow of water through the filter

Basecoat: A layer of filter aid between the pre-coat and septum

Blinding: Filling in and clogging of a filter medium caused by entrapment of particles from a filtered liquid. When the medium becomes "blind", an increase in differential pressure and reduction of flow results

Bridging: Debris, which arches or bridges the individual pleats in the filter cartridge or between the filter elements.

Cartridge Filter: A filter that uses a pleated, porous medium as a filtering material.

Clarification: The process by which the filter removes progressively smaller particles on each successive turn over, thus improving efficiency and extending the cycle life. Cartridge Filters use the clarification process.

Clarifier: (also called the coagulant or flocculent): A chemical that coagulates and neutralizes suspended particles in water. There are two types of clarifiers: inorganic salts of aluminum or iron and water-soluble organic polyelectrolyte polymers.

Coagulation: The process by which very small, finely divided solid particles - often colloidal in nature - are agglomerated into larger particles.

Compressibility: Degree of physical change in a filter cake when it is subject to pressure, resulting in increased differential pressure and reduced flow.

D.E.: Abbreviation for diatomaceous earth. Fossil-like skeletons of microscopic water plants called diatoms.

Denier: The relationship between cross sectional area and weight. Denier is numerically equal to the weight in grams of 9000 meters of individual fiber. (i.e.1 gram equals 1 denier) Most filtration grade Reemay use four denier fibers. These fibers are approximately 28 microns in diameter.

Differential Pressure: (1) the difference in pressure between two given points. (2) The combined pressure caused by the debris, filter cake, pre-coat and septum, expressed as "Delta P". (3) The effluent pressure minus the influent pressure.

Effluent: Fluid which has passed through a filter. Also called the filtrate.

Enzymes: An organic protein, also known as amino acids. Enzymes are non-toxic and biodegradable. Although they are not an oxidizer or clarifier, enzymes significantly reduce cartridge maintenance by breaking down oils into carbon dioxide and water.

Feed: The mixture of particles and fluid that is introduced into the filter. Terms used synonymously include "influent" and "incoming slurry".

Filter: verb: To pass fluid containing suspended particles through a filter medium whereby the particles are separated from the fluid. Noun: A "device" for carrying out the filtration process, consistsof a filter medium and suitable hardware for constraining and supporting it in the path of the fluid.

Filter Aid: Any material (usually diatomaceous earth) that enhances the separation of solids from liquids in the filtration process.

Filter Cake: The combined layers of solids, pre-coat, and debris removed in the filtration process and accumulated on the surface of the medium.

Filter Cycle: The operating time between cleaning and backwash cycles.

Filter Medium: The permeable material such as diatomaceous earth, sand, or polyester non-woven material used to separate suspended particles from liquid.

Filtrate: Fluid that has passed through a filter. Also called the effluent.

Filtration: The process by which particles are separated from a liquid by passing through a permeable material.

Filtration Rate: Flow in Gallons Per Minute (GPM) through one square foot of filter medium. For residential pools, the filtration rate should be 2 GPM per square foot of D.E. filter surface area. For most commercial pools, the filtration rate should be 1 GPM per square foot of D.E. filter surface area and .375 GPM per square foot of cartridge filter surface.

Flocculation: The process by which small-dispersed particles combine together to form larger size particles, which can be removed by a filter. This is the result of adding an electrolyte to the water.

Hydrophilic: Water accepting, (the ability to absorb water).

Hydrophobic: Water rejecting, (Lacking the ability to absorb water).

Influent: Dirty or unfiltered water introduced to the filter. Also referred to as "feed" or "incoming slurry".

OEM: Original Equipment Manufacturer or brand name.

Micron Size: Expressed as micrometer, a unit of measurement equal to 1/1,000,000 of a meter (.0000394) 40 micron is considered the smallest size particle visible to the naked eye. A red blood cell is 6-8 micrometers large. One grain of table salt is roughly 100 micrometers in size.

Permeability: Expressed in cubic feet per minute (CFM), the resistance to flow through a media. The lower the perm number the greater the resistance. The permeability of a filter is a quality control measure for cartridge and D.E. filter materials.

Polyester: Long chain synthetic polymer composed of at least 85% by weight of ester of dihydric alcohol and terephalic acid.

Polymer: High molecular weight organic compound whose structure can be represented by repeated small units. Synthetic polymers are formed by condensation polymerization of monomers. If two or more monomers are involved, a copolymer is formed.

Porosity: (1) The degree of open area between the fibers (2) the void area which exists in the structure.

Pre-coat: The layer of filter aid (usually D.E.) formed on the surface by introducing a slurry (generally between .1 and.2 lbs. per square foot of surface area) to the medium at the beginning of the filter cycle.

Reemay: A registered trademark of Reemay, Inc. Originally developed by DuPont, Reemay is made of continuous filament, 100% polyester fibers. The process by which these fibers are drawn, randomly laid and thermally bonded is known as "spun bonding".

Septum: A permeable material used to support the filter medium or pre-coat on D.E. Filters.

Trilobal: The three sided fiber formed by drawing polyester resin through a die or spinner. This is the basic shape of reemay Fibers.

Turbidity: (1) The characteristic or property of a liquid causes it to absorb or scatter light. (2) A measurement of water cloudiness or haziness caused by microorganisms, algae, or suspended fine particles.

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