Best Cartridge Pool Filter

Cartridge Pool Filter Guide

To keep your pool looking its best, you need to use a quality pool filter. One of the most popular and efficient options is a cartridge pool filter. They are usually reasonably priced and easy to install and can remove particles as small as 15 microns. Still, this is only when you buy a quality product.

With plenty of options out there, they aren’t all worth considering. To help make this purchase easier, we have created the following buyer’s guide.

What To Look For In A Cartridge Pool Filter


As we mentioned, a typical cartridge pool filter will be able to remove particles as small as 15 microns. Since the human eye cannot detect anything below 40, you get a sense of how fine this is.

Not every product is going to be able to remove particles this small but any more than 20 and it might not be efficient enough for your pool.

Pool Size

A cartridge pool filter has to be suitable for the size of your pool. Some people neglect this stage and end up with a pool filter that cannot clean such a large area. 

Make sure the tank sure is big enough for the number of gallons you have in your pool. 


The material in the cartridge will determine how long it lasts. Some are made for short term use and are defined to be replace more frequently. These might be cheaper but a cloth cartridge will last longer and can be washed numerous times before you need to replace them.

Flow Rate

To find out how quickly the cartridge pool filter you are considering can clean the water, look at the flow rate. Match the flow rate to that of your pump, or slightly higher. A flow rate of 25GPM should take 8 hours to clean a pool of 3,000 – 8,000 gallons.

Look to the manufacturer’s guidelines as an indicator of how quickly it can clean your pool.

As we’ve just mentioned, the cartridge pool filter needs to be able to keep up with the rate of your pool pump so check on this before you click buy.

Ease Of Installation

Thankfully, these filters don’t take long to install. An above-ground pool is going to be easier than an in-ground and can take as little as 15 minutes to hook up, with the maximum being an hour.

Although you don’t always need a professional with an in-ground pool, it can be useful as it will protect the warranty. If you install it yourself, you might not be able to get your money back if something goes awry.


This is where the quality of the materials and the company’s reputation come in. With a cartridge filter, you will need to remove the cartridge to clean it from time to time, but this will prolong the lifespan of the filter.

Expect a well-maintained cartridge pool filter to last up to 5 years.

What Does A Pool Filter Do?

The chemicals in your pool are good for keeping the water hygienic and free from bacteria and algae, and a pool filter is good for keeping it clean.

They will not remove large debris so sticks and leaves will require the use of a pool net or vacuum to remove. For everything else, including those tiny particles we cannot see, a pool filter helps to keep the water clear.

Cartridge Pool filter Vs Sand

Although a sand filter is often a more affordable option, in terms of quality, a cartridge pool filter is hard to beat. 

Because they have a larger filtration system, a cartridge filter can remove smaller particles which will mean your water is always cleaner.

Because you do not need to backwash the water to clean it, a cartridge pool filter is also easier and more efficient. 

Do I Need A Pool Filter?

Every pool that you use recreationally requires a pool filter. 

Without one, the water will be full of small particles that are difficult to remove otherwise. A pool net is only capable of getting rid of certain particles so for the finer ones you cannot see, a pool filter system is essential.

How Long Should I Run My Pool Filter For?

A general guideline for removing the small particles from your pool water is to leave the filter on for 8 hours every 24. This is assuming you have the appropriate filter for your pool size.

How Much Does A Cartridge Pool Filter Cost?

This varies depending on the brand but most are available for around $400 and above. an in-ground cartridge filter might cost you less depending on the product and pool size.

How Long Does A Cartridge Pool Filter Last?

This is one of the main downsides to a cartridge pool filter as it does not offer as much longevity as other types of filters for your pool.

Still, an average filter will last a few years and you can get over 5 years of use out of a well-maintained cartridge filter. Remember to hose it down every now and then to make sure it is fully operational.

Certain things can cause it to deteriorate faster such as sun lotion, chemicals, and hair-care products that have been in the water.

How To Maintain a Cartridge Pool Filter

These products are not designed for long term use but with the right amount of care, you can extend their lifespan by a few years.

Remember to remove the filter and hose it down regularly or replace it altogether if you have opted for a cheaper version with a short lifespan. Some products are made to last longer so you can wash them time and again before they are no longer able to do their job sufficiently enough.

If you notice that the pool is not as clean as it has been and you have been using the same cartridge pool filter for some time now, check that it doesn’t need a clean. If this still doesn’t work, it is time to replace it. 


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