How Much Sand For Pool Filter? Keeping The Pool Clean

pool filter

Pools need a lot of maintenance. To make sure that the pool area stays clean, you have to make sure that the filter is working properly. Filters are used to process all of the water in the pool so you can keep on removing contaminants and ensure that the water is as pure as possible.

Typically, filters make use of sand to remove small debris from the water. The most common way to use sand is through a pressure-fed sand filter that contains graded sand. A high rate sand filter is known to remove particulates in the water that is at least 10 micrometers big.

With continued use, the sand inside a filter will deteriorate. This is why you will have to replace the sand in the pool filter every 5 or 7 years. You should also know what sand to use and how much to put into the filter so that it will be able to function properly.

Why Do You Have To Replace The Sand In The Filter?

taking pool filter out

The sand in the filter can become dull with continued use. If the sand is no longer sharp, it will no longer remove as many contaminants as before. The sand particles can get rounded as it gets rubbed together, this is why most experts recommend that you change it every few years.

The sand can also slowly ball up, and the water can also start to make tunnels around the sand. This is why after years of use, the filter might no longer be able to work properly. If this happens, you will see that the water in the pool will still be cloudy no matter how long you run it through the filter.

filtration sand

The backwash cycles will also seem to be shorter. Over time, the sand in the filter can also accumulate too much debris or contaminants. It can collect a lot of hair, skin, oil, and even chemicals that make it harder for the sand to filter the water properly.

To make sure that the pool water stays clear, you will have to use the proper filter media. Never use sand for construction purposes. Instead, it would be best if you tried to opt for quality pool filter sand. You can even use products like Z-Media or other media made from volcanic ash or other materials.

How Much Sand For Pool Filter?

changing sand in pool filter

When it comes to figuring out how much sand you need to put inside your pool filter, you should try to check the model of the filter first. This is because many pool filters will need a specific amount of sand to work properly.

On average, small pool filters will need around 150 – 200 pounds of sand. For medium-sized filters, you might have to use as much as 350 pounds of sand. Large pools with extensive filters, on the other hand, will need as much as 750 pounds of sand up to 950 pounds of sand for it to work effectively.

filtration sand

In some cases, instead of considering the weight of the sand, you can try to fill the filter with as much sand as you can. But leave a space of at least 6 – 8 inches starting from the top of the filter. There are filter models. However, that will require you to leave as much as 10-12 inches of space from the top.

If you do not have the filter’s instruction manual, you can look online for more information. If this is not possible, you can buy 3-4 bags of pool filter sand or #20 silica sand, depending on how large the filter is. And then slowly add it to the filter while leaving 6-12 inches from the top.


Changing the sand in the filter is very important because it will properly process the pool. Besides, new sand is more capable of removing contaminants. When changing the sand, always refer to the filter’s user manual to know what type and how much to use.

If you do not have it, you can always ask a pool technician to do it for you. But if you want to do it yourself, you need to be very careful of the old sand simply because it can contain many bacteria or organic contaminants. When putting sand, you should also be careful not to clog or damage the filter.

In general, most pools will need around 150 – 200 pounds of sand, while larger pools with more extensive filters will need as much as 600 pounds of sand or more. It will all depend on the size of the filter. If you do not know how much sand to put into your specific filter, I recommend that you ask expert advice.

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