How To Change Sand In Pool Filter

If you’ve opted to use a sand filter to help keep your pool water clean and safe to swim in, then one of the necessary maintenance requirements that you will need to ensure you’re doing is change out the sand in the filter.

Why? Well, the sand’s purpose is to prevent nasty dirt, debris and contaminants from entering the main body of water, which means that it can get pretty dirty if left unchecked. 

How To Change Sand In Pool Filter

Now, even though changing your pool filter’s sand can seem like a tedious process, the good news is that it will typically only need to be done once a year (or sometimes even longer than that) which means that, besides being super low maintenance, it can also be easy to forget the steps - but that’s where we come in to lend a helping hand.

If you’re currently wanting to change the sand in your pool’s filter but you’re not too sure of where to start, then rest assured that you’ve clicked on the right article!

Below, you will find a helpful step-by-step guide on how to correctly change the sand inside your pool's filter, so you can go on enjoying pristine swimming water as normal. Let’s jump right in.

How To Change Sand In Pool Filter: Step-By-Step Instructions

Step One: Make Sure That You Have All The Right Equipment

First things first, before you even think about attempting to change the sand in your pool’s filter, you should first take the time to ensure that you have all the necessary equipment.

Besides making sure that you have all of the replacement sand that you’ll need after you have removed the current sand, you might also want to make sure that you have a screwdriver, some tape, lubricant as well as a bucket to safely dispose of the unwanted sand.

Once you have made sure you have all of the necessary equipment you’ll need to safely remove the sand and replace it with new, you will then be ready to begin the process of making the switch.

As a side note, it’s very important that you make sure you’re using the correct sand inside your pool filter, otherwise, you might unintentionally damage the filter.

Therefore, if you’re ever unsure about which sand you should be using, we recommend referring to your pool filter owner’s manual which will contain all of the necessary information or alternatively reaching out to the manufacturer’s customer service team for guidance.

Step Two: Switch Off The Pool’s Pump

In order to ensure you’re able to effectively replace the sand inside your pool’s filter, we first recommend that you take the time to switch off your pool’s pump to stop water from flowing into your pool. This will then allow you to access your pool filter and replace the existing sand with a new one more easily.

Step Three: Carefully Remove The Drainage Cap

Once you’ve stopped your pool’s water pump, the next thing you will need to do is to remove the drain cap, which is usually located at the bottom of the pool.

To do this, slowly begin by losing the cap, as this will help to alleviate some of the built-up air pressure, before then proceeding to completely remove the drainage cap. As soon as you have done this, you will then need to remove the unions connected to the waste and return pipes.

As a side note, if you do not wish to have any water spilling anywhere, then we recommend attaching a hosepipe right over the drain so that you will be able to direct the water somewhere else, rather than all over the floor!

Step Four: Disconnect The Multiport Valve

After you have taken off the drainage cap, the next thing that you will need to do is to remove everything that is connected to the multiport valve - mainly the return, the waste hoses, and the pump.

Once you have done all of this, you can then remove the multiport valve which will be connected to your pool’s flange clamp but does keep in mind that you will likely need to use a screwdriver to successfully achieve this, especially if the flange clamp has been fastened down with screws or bolts.

As a side note, if your multiport happens to come with unions, then all you will need to do is simply untwist them until they come loose. From there, you will be able to lift off the multiport valve. Keep in mind that while you are removing the valve, you should do your best to pull it off without being too forceful, otherwise you might damage the surrounding pipe system.

Step Five: Remove The Current Sand And Clean The Tank

With your chosen tape, close off the exposed pipe that was connected to the multiport valve, as this will stop any sand from getting inside it and causing it to become clogged. Then, all you will need to do is remove all of the sand currently inside the filter, choosing to either place it all into a bucket or trash bag.

Lastly, before you add in the new sand, you will need to make sure that the tank is nice and clean, as this will help to get rid of any remnants still in the tank. To do this, we recommend that you take either a hose or bucket of water.

Step 6: Add The New Sand

After you have done all of the above successfully, all you will then need to do is add in your sand! To do this, open up the bag of sand that you have selected and simply begin to pour it into your filter until you can no longer see any of the lateral pipes.

After you have finished pouring in the new sand, smooth out the top to ensure that all of the sand has been evenly distributed inside the unit, and it will be good to go!

How to change sand in a pool filter summary: 

Let's quickly review:

  1. Make sure you have everything you are going to need before you start to make the job go easy and fast, This includes a screwdriver, tape, lubricant, the correct type of sand and enough to refill the filter
  2. Switch off the pools pump. This is to make sure the pump doesn't come on from the timer while you are working on the filter. 
  3. Carefully remove the drainage cap. Remove slowly in case of built up pressure. If needed use a drain house to divert the water away from the work area. 
  4. Disconnect the multiport valve being careful not to damage it.
  5. Remove the sand into buckets in order to dispose easily of. Make sure the tank is clean and back in it's proper location before refilling with sand. 
  6. Hook the multiport valve back up, check the fittings and turn the pump on to check that there aren't any leaks and you should be done.