These instructions are provided for your convenience. They are not meant to supersede any instructions provided by the equipment manufacturer or your pool builder. Pool Emporium, Inc. assumes no liabilities.

Chemically Cleaning A D.E. Filter With A Bump Handle


You should chemically clean your filter at least once a year (preferably twice), or when pressure cannot be relieved through backwashing. (Biguanide users, such as SoftSwim® should clean their filters at least every 6 weeks.)

  1. Backwash the filter in the normal manner, but do not recharge the D.E. Leave your backwash valve open, backwash hose unrolled, and the pump shut off.
  2. Open the air relief valve on the top of the filter, and allow the water to drain from the tank.
  3. Disassemble the filter by removing the 15 sets of bolts, nuts, and washers around the top of the filter. Be careful not to lose these - they are made of stainless steel and are quite costly to replace.
  4. Remove the top of the filter and lift out the entire unit containing the "fingers".
  5. Hose off the fingers to remove any D.E. and debris that was not removed during the backwashing process.
  6. Inspect the fingers for damage and replace as necessary.
  7. Fill a clean five gallon bucket ¾ of the way with water, and add ½ to one full bottle of BioGuard's Strip-Kwik® (de-greaser). Very dirty filters, or those that have gone over one year since their last chemical cleaning, may require more.
  8. Immerse the set of fingers in the five gallon bucket. Let them soak for at least four hours, but not more than 24 hours.
  9. While the fingers are soaking, take your garden hose and manually rinse out the filter tank, allowing the water to drain through the backwash hose. Close the backwash valve and roll up the backwash hose when you are finished.
  10. Rinse off the set of fingers and rinse out the bucket.
  11. The following steps may not be necessary! Test to see by placing a few drops of acid on one of the fingers. Proceed if you see any bubbling. If you do not see any bubbling, skip to step 15.
  12. Again fill the bucket with water and add approximately the same amount of BioGuard's Kleen-It® (de-scaler) as Strip-Kwik® was used. You may substitute an acid solution for the Kleen-It®. Add one gallon muriatic acid to four gallons of water.
  13. Immerse the set of fingers in the five gallon bucket. Let the fingers soak for at least four hours, but not more than 24.
  14. Rinse off the set of fingers, and rinse out the bucket.
  15. Start the pump, and close the air relief valve when a steady stream of water shoots out of it.
  16. Recharge with D.E. (Note: You will have better D.E. distribution if you place your D.E. slurry mix directly in the bottom of the filter tank before you replace the assembly. If you choose to use this method, skip step 15, and take extra care not to allow any of the mixture to enter open plumbing. Then close the air relief valve when a steady stream of water shoots out of it.)

PLEASE NOTE: When re-installing, make sure the diaphragm gasket is seated correctly and properly lubricated. If your filter is over three (3) years old, you may need to replace the diaphragm gasket. This would be indicated if you are unable to properly seal the tank, causing water to leak out when you turn the pump back on.