If you own a pool, whether it is an in-ground or above-ground pool, pool filters are always essential equipment. These pieces of equipment are responsible for keeping your pool purely clean, preventing it from becoming a cloudy green pool.
Pool filters vary in three types including sand, cartridge, and D.E. Meanwhile, pool sand filters are more commonly used, concerning their smooth operation and maintenance. In this review, I will list the 15 best pool sand filters currently available in the market.
Let’s get started!
Table of Contents
- Sand Filtes vs. Cartridge Filters
- Quick Answer: The Best Sand Filters for Pools
- Comparison of Top 15 Best Pool Sand Filters 2020
- Reviews of the Best Pool Sand Filters
- XtremepowerUS 24" Pool Sand Filter System
- Bestway Flowclear Sand Filter
- Rx Clear Radiant 24 Inch Sand Filter System
- Intex Krystal Clear 16-inch Pool Sand Filter
- Pentair 145333 Sand Dollar Top-Mount Pool Filter
- Pentair Triton II Pool Sand Filter
- GAME SandPRO 50D Series Pool Sand Filter
- Hayward S244T ProSeries Pool Sand Filter
- Hayward W3S ProSeries Sand Filter
- Best Choice Products Pro 13" Sand Filter
- Intex 26679EG Krystal Clear Saltwater Sand Filter System
- Radiant 16 Inch Complete Sand Filter System
- Swimline 71225 Sand Master Pool Filter
- Raypak Protege Top Mount Sand Filter
- Jacuzzi Laser 25 Inch Pool Sand Filter
- Choosing the Best Pool Sand Filters
- How Does a Pool Sand Filter Work?
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Swim Network Overview
Sand Filtes vs. Cartridge Filters
While pool sand filters are the traditional form of filtration, cartridge pool filters are known for their popularity. So what are the exact differences between them?
Regarding sand filters, these traditional pool filters typically consist of a spherical-shaped globe that contains filter sand (such as silica sand) inside. Some products come in full filtration systems (pumps included), while others only include the filter.
How do they work? Well, water will be pushed to flow through the sand by the pool pump to remove dirt and debris down to 20-40 micron-sized. When contaminants and small particles are filtered out, the water will flow back into the pool from the tank's bottom.
See Also: 15 Best Variable Speed Pool Pumps
So which are the outstanding points of these pool filters? First, they are perfect for both above-ground and in-ground pools. Second, they are straightforward to use and maintain. Third, their prices are quite reasonable, compared to those other types.
However, sand filters require regular backwashing, as a part of their maintenance. Backwashing will lower the pool water. Besides, their filtering capacity is not as good as cartridge filters’.
As for cartridge pool filters, this type of pool filter is becoming more and more popular, thanks to their advance in filtration technology. They are ideal pool filters for above-ground pools.
These pool filters use the cartridge membrane, which is placed inside the cartridge tank, to trap dirt and particles down to 10-15 microns-sized. Then the clean water will be returned to your pool.
What are the pros of cartridge filters? First, they require no backwashing, which means you can save your own money for water consumption. Second, they can filter out twice as much as dirt and debris as sand filters, due to their larger filtration area and higher filtering capacity.
Still, these pool filters are relatively high in price. They are not praised for their durability over time. Also, they are not practical for pools at a huge size (not suitable for in-ground pools).
See Also: 15 Best Best Pool Filter Cartridges
Quick Answer: The Best Sand Filters for Pools
Regarding the main features and functions of each product with its own pros and cons, I created this list of some of the best pool sand filters for you to refer to.
- Best Overall: XtremepowerUS 24" Pool Sand Filter System
"7-Way multiport for easy use and quick backwashing; a top mount, with a 7-position multiport valve and a high filtering capacity to catch more debris and extend filter cycles."
- Best Price: Swimline 71225 Sand Master Pool Filter
"Perfect for above-ground pools with a 4-position multiport valve for quick and easy filtration, made of corrosion-resistant material, and come along with a powerful 20 GPM pump."
- Best Sand Filter for Above Ground Pool: Bestway Flowclear
"Ideal for above-ground pools, hassle-free assembly with a top flange clamp designed with 360 degrees rotation, come with the ChemConnect Dispenser, the pump uses silica sand."
- Best Sand Filter for Inground Pool: Rx Clear Radiant 24 Inch
"Efficient, easy-to-use operating system, support in-ground pools measuring up to 33,000 gallons, come with a 6-position valve and 1.5-inch threaded connections."
- Best Rated: Intex Krystal Clear 16-inch Pool Sand Filter
"Integrated with a 6-function control valve for quick and easy maintenance with a built-in 24-hour timer for automatic operation, come along with a pump at the GPH of 3000."
- Best for Saltwater Pool: Pentair 145333 Sand Dollar Top-Mount Pool Filter
"Integrated with a six-position, top-mounted multiport valve with the superior flow characteristics and long filter cycles for economical operation, easy to maintain and durable."
- Best Quality: Pentair Triton II Pool Sand Filter
"Feature the Swing-away diffuser for easy access to sand and internal parts, an easy-to-read pressure gauge with air relief valve and fiberglass reinforced tank with UV resistant surface."
- Best for a Small Pool: GAME SandPRO 50D Series Pool Sand Filter
"A powerful above-ground pool filtration system, features an easy-to-read pressure gauge, easy and quiet operation, designed for pools up to 10,000 gallons."
- Best for a 20000 Gallon Pool: Hayward S244T ProSeries Pool Sand Filter
"Corrosion-resistant material, a patented 6-position multiport valve for easy maintenance, efficient filtration, thorough backwashing, support in-ground pools up to 29,760 gallons."
- Best for 15,000 Gallon Pool: Hayward W3S ProSeries Sand Filter
"Feature the efficient, multi-lateral underdrain assembly with precision-engineered, self-cleaning 360° slotted laterals with the integral top diffuser and the corrosion-proof tank."
- Best for 7000 Gallon Pool: Best Choice Products Pro 13" Sand Filter
"Suitable for pools up to 10,000 gallons, features a system tray, 4-way valve, connection hose, pressure gauge, and a 3-prong plug with an electric cable with pump included."
- Best for Summer Waves Pool: Intex 26679EG Krystal Clear Saltwater Sand Filter System
"Ideal for above-ground pools up to 15,000 gallons, 2 years under warranty, integrated with the hydro-aeration technology for improved circulation and filtration."
- Best With Pump: Radiant 16 Inch Complete Sand Filter System
"Come in a full filtration system, easy operation, ideal for above-ground pools, consist of the standpipe and laterals, under 3-year limited warranty."
Comparison of Top 15 Best Pool Sand Filters 2020
This comparison table below will provide you with some of the primary technical information of the 15 best pool sand filters. Let’s take a look.
Reviews of the Best Pool Sand Filters
Below are my detailed reviews of 15 best pool sand filters currently available on the market.
XtremepowerUS 24" Pool Sand Filter System
(Best Overall - Editor's Choice)
Having said to be a revolution and creativity for pool services thanks to the innovative, sophisticated and modern design, the XtremepowerUS 24" Pool Sand Filter System is worthy of becoming the best pool sand filter in the market.
This pool sand filter is very active on cleaning a large amount of pool water each hour and quick, economical in backwashing. The number of sand in the filter helps retain a lot of sand after using thanks to a 7-Way multiport filter and holding 300lbs of media sand.
Furthermore, being designed with a drain cap with the filter and the one-piece blow-molded tank, this product will provide durability through any kind of weather and high capacity to create a water crystal clean and safe for swimming.
- 300 lbs sand filter system giving high-quality water
- Sturdy and durable thanks to Drain cap with strainer
- High capacity
- 7 Way multiport filter
- Suitable size for any pools
- The pressure gauge is a bit vulnerable
Bestway Flowclear Sand Filter
(Best Sand Filter for Above Ground Pool)
If you are finding a pool sand filter that is simple but effective and suitable for your above-ground pool, you can't turn a blind eye to this Bestway Flowclear Sand Filter because this product fits most 300-14, 000 gallon above ground pools.
This pool sand filter comes with the ChemConnect Dispenser that provides a stable level of chlorine and maintains clean, healthy, and skin-friendly water. Besides, using silica sand in the filter pump also helps trap dirt and save money for extended shelf life.
Moreover, 360 degrees rotation of the top flange clamp and high capacity of the pool pump at a flow rate of 2200 gallons/hr also ensure this product's quality.
- Suitable for most 300-14, 000 gallon above ground pools
- High capacity of pool pump rates
- Saving money thanks to using silica sand
- Provide clean, healthy and skin-friendly water
- 360 degrees rotation of the top flange clamp provide quick and easy installation
- This sand filter is quite loud when working
See Also: 15 Best Above Ground Pool Filters
Rx Clear Radiant 24 Inch Sand Filter System
(Best Sand Filter for Inground Pool)
This Rx Clear Radiant 24 Inch Sand Filter System is the must-have item for in-ground pools of any size, thanks to its compatibility with many following swimming pool sizes and measuring in-ground pools up to 33,000 gallons.
This pool sand filter also includes an easy-to-use operating system that keeps your pool water always crystal clean and safe for swimming, and 300 lbs of traditional Grade 20 Silica Sand that can last up to 5 years since it was first used.
Another plus point is its one-piece blow-molded tank, and the interior consists of the standpipe and laterals that ensure the durability.
- Suitable for in-ground pools up to 33,000 gallons
- Have an easy-to-use operating system
- Provide crystal clear water
- Less backwash needed
- High-quality materials ensure durability
- Seems difficult to set up
Intex Krystal Clear 16-inch Pool Sand Filter
One of the reasons why users highly appreciate the Intex Krystal Clear 16-inch Pool Sand Filter is its six function controls that enable you to filter, re-circulate, backwash, rinse, drain, and close the system with 100% guarantee.
For additional convenience, you will be supplied with a 24-hour automatic timer that makes it easy to use, clean, or control, and that collects large particles and prolongs the life of the sand.
Besides the hydro aeration technology and the flow rate of 2,100 gallons per hour, this product also has a high capacity of providing crystal clear water in a short time.
- Six functions making it convenient and easy to use
- The 24-hour automatic timer that is easy to control
- High filter capacity with the flow rate of 2,100 gallons per hour
- Using hydro aeration technology
- Having a strainer basket collecting large particles
- The material is quite flimsy
Pentair 145333 Sand Dollar Top-Mount Pool Filter
(Best for Saltwater Pool)
Some people have tended to add a tinge of salt to their pools for health and skin benefit. There is not too much specific pool filter for saltwater, but don't worry; this Pentair 145333 Sand Dollar TOP-Mount Pool Filter will operate well and be suitable for your salt pool.
This pool sand filter requires 350 lbs of sand along with a 6-function 1-1/2" multiport valve that will make you impressed because of its effect on "knock out" the dirt and provide crystal clear water to your pool.
Besides, the internal design, the combination of water and sand drain that makes this product the most efficient filtration possible for the salt pool are other plus points of this filter.
- Combination water and sand drain ensure smooth and fast service and winterizing
- Six-position along with top-mounted multiport valve
- Effect on “knock out” the dirt and provide crystal clear water
- Simple to maintain and operate
- After backwashing 2 to 3 times, it may start leaking
Pentair Triton II Pool Sand Filter
This Pentair Triton II Pool Sand Filter will impress you with a heavy-duty closure and an easy-to-read pressure gauge along with an air relief valve that enables you to check your pool sand filter accurately and acquire an excellent reputation for durability.
The pool sand filter also includes a combination of sand and water drain that helps the water filtration process happen faster, save energy, protect the environment, and provide extreme crystal clear water.
Furthermore, the swing-away diffuser makes it simple to get a connection between sand all internal part
- Heavy-duty construction enhances durability and reliability
- UV resistant coating withstands any kind of weather
- Easy for installation and storage
- Easy for cleaning
- Provide maximum run times backwashing and extreme crystal clear water
- Not including any add-ons
GAME SandPRO 50D Series Pool Sand Filter
(Best for a Small Pool)
If you own a small pool and don't know which pool sand filter will be suitable for it, the GAME SandPRO 50D Series Pool Sand Filter will be an ideal choice thanks to its high flow rate motor and ability to hold 10,000-gallon pools.
This pool sand filter is appropriate to the above-ground pool and supplies an easy-to-read pressure gauge that allows you to check your pool filter state and enable you to make any changes immediately if something goes wrong.
Besides, the easy-to-operate 4-position rotary valve and the easy-to-clean strainer basket also give this product more praise.
- The easy-to-operate 4-position rotary valve is included
- Having an easy-to-clean strainer basket
- Suitable for a small pool
- Provide an easy-to-read pressure gauge
- High flow rate motor
- Not suitable for commercial pools
Hayward S244T ProSeries Pool Sand Filter
(Best for a 20000 Gallon Pool)
If you're searching for a powerful filtering capacity and sturdy construction product, you will fall in love with this Hayward S244T ProSeries pool sand filter.
This filter is designed with a high GPM rate to fit pools up to 30,000 gallons. If your pool volume is about 20,000 gallons, you can totally be at ease with this product.
Besides, it is made of strong polymeric material, which makes the filter tank extremely durable over time. The lid is also topped with a patented 6-position multiport valve to ensure smooth operation and maintenance.
Moreover, this filter features advanced full-flow technology, which is said to reduce the energy cost while still ensuring excellent filtering capacity.
- Made of durable, weather and corrosion-resistant material
- A gigantic pressure drain is included for rapid servicing
- Simple operation
- Easy backwashing
- Powerful filtration system with a high design flow rate
- Rather large in weight
Hayward W3S ProSeries Sand Filter
(Best for 15,000 Gallon Pool)
This Hayward W3S ProSeries Sand Filter is a highly recommended product for a medium-sized pool (about 20,000 gallons). If your pool volume is about 15,000 gallons, this product is definitely a perfect filter for a sparkling swimming pool.
With the corrosion-proof polymeric material, this product promises to withstand all weather conditions and last for a long time. Besides, you won’t need to worry about the flow capacity due to its precision-engineered umbrella-fold self-cleaning lateral system.
This filter is integrated with a versatile 6-position Vari-Flo control valve and a large pressure drain for convenient use and easy maintenance.
With the sturdy construction, efficient flow, and a quite powerful filtering capacity, this sand filter ensures to provide you with a super easy-to-use experience and a sparkling clean blue water pool.
- Made of corrosion-proof polymeric material
- Efficient flow thanks to a precision-engineered umbrella-fold self-cleaning lateral system
- Include a versatile 6-position Vari-Flo control valve for smooth operation and maintenance
- A large pressure drain for quick servicing
- A rather poor packaging
Best Choice Products Pro 13" Sand Filter
(Best for 7000 Gallon Pool)
This filter and pump set Best Choice Products Pro 13" Sand Filter is a perfect option for small above-ground pools (about 10,000 gallons). Therefore, this filter pump will work perfectly for a 7000 gallon pool.
You can be at ease with this product's quality because this filter pump has already met some rigorous national and international safety standards such as ETL, UL, and CSA.
Come in sturdy construction, this compact unit also possesses the powerful filtration, which ensures to quickly filter your pool in just a few hours, leaving your pool totally debris-free and sparkling clean and hygiene.
Besides, this set features a top-mounted, 4-position multiport valve to provide users with easy-to-use, easy-to-backwashing experience. It has a high-capacity sand bed to extend filter cycles and speed up the filtering time.
- Certified to CSA and meet the applicable published safety standard
- Sturdy construction and compact design
- Feature a thermally protected pump
- Powerful filtration at high speed (60 GPM)
- Low-cost maintenance and easy installation
- The hose clamps are a bit poor quality
Intex 26679EG Krystal Clear Saltwater Sand Filter System
(Best for Summer Waves Pool)
If you own a summer waves pool and still find it confusing to pick out the most appropriate sand filter, then this Intex 26679EG Krystal Clear Saltwater Sand Filter System will be your answer.
This filter system is highly praised for some of its outstanding features. These include being integrated with the hydro aeration technology to ensure improved circulation and filtration.
Besides, this saltwater system with the electro catalytic oxidation allows chlorine to be produced in the pool, eliminating the risk of traditional packaging chlorine.
Another plus point for this unit is the built-in 24-hour timer for automatic operation. There's nothing you need to do after the timer is set—such a care-free experience.
- Feature the hydro aeration technology to improve circulation and filtration
- A saltwater system with the electro catalytic oxidation, say goodbye to the dangerous chlorine
- Integrated with one 24-hour timer for automatic operation
- Easy to connect with a summer waves pool
- Quiet operation
- The steel frame is a bit easily get rusted
Radiant 16 Inch Complete Sand Filter System
(Best With Pump)
If you’re searching for a full filter system with a powerful pump included, this Radiant 16 Inch Complete Sand Filter System will likely meet your expectation. The extreme force pump is designed to ensure free-flowing operations at all times.
This filter pump set will provide you with everything needed to start your filtering work immediately: an Rx Clear Extreme Niagara pool pump, a luster filter tank, a 3' high-pressure hose, backwash hose fittings and stainless steel clamps.
The filter media of this product is not sand.It is Rx Clear Luster Filter Media and sold separately. Does this alternative have any benefits? Of course, it is capable of filtering debris down to 5-3 microns and requires less backwashing than a standard sand filter.
Besides, the filter tank comes under a 3-year limited warranty. If there are any defects related to the manufacturer, just contact them for the most cost-efficient solution.
- Require less maintenance
- Filter dirt and debris down to 5-3 microns
- Easy to install and to use
- Powerful Rx Clear Extreme Niagara pump
- Come under a 3-year limited warranty
- Feature a top mount with a 6-position multiport valve to provide an easy-to-use experience.
- There’s no shut-off switch on the pump
Swimline 71225 Sand Master Pool Filter
You will not regret it if you have an intention to buy this Swimline 71225 Sand Master Pool Filter because the cost of it is too low for the effect it brings. With a low price but significant benefits, this pool sand filter has recently caught great attention from customers.
Designed with a four-position multiport valve and a powerful 20 GPM pump, this sand filter will provide you with a high capacity of cleaning water and become an excellent choice for above ground pools, which up to 9,600 gallons.
Besides, 115V power source and one year warranty, which ensures durability, also bring this product a lot of plus points.
- Reasonable price
- One year warranty
- Four-position multiport valve and a powerful 20 GPM pump
- Provide crystal clear water
- High capacity of 42 lbs of sand
- Fittings require to be tightened
Raypak Protege Top Mount Sand Filter
This Raypak Protege Top Mount Sand Filter is highly praised for its reliability and durability over long time use. The filter tank is made of durable, high-compact resistant polymers, and the construction is very strong, very sturdy.
This product also features an easy-to-read pressure gauge, an oversized filter valve and 1.5'' ports. It is a hassle-free sand filter with adequate filtering capacity and affordable price.
I'm pretty sure you won't be confused with the installation, operation, or maintenance of this product.
- Include an oversized filter valve and 1.5″ ports
- Come in a wide and sturdy base
- The filter tank is made of high-impact resistant polymers
- Easy-to-read pressure gauge
- Easy assembly
- Does not come with instruction
Jacuzzi Laser 25 Inch Pool Sand Filter
This Jacuzzi Laser 25 Inch Pool Sand Filter features the 25" UVand corrosion-resistant blow-molded tank, ensuring to last for a long time. It includes a 7-way dial valve with 7 different functions for the best easy-to-use experience.
Besides, with the drain at the bottom of the tank and water across the filter sand's entire surface without causing channeling or sand migration, this product is very good at water distribution, and winterizing will cause no problem at all.
The filter also comes along with a hose and hardware.
- Engineered with an underdrain and side-slotted laterals
- Feature a 7-way dial valve with 7 different functions
- Require simple assembly
- Sturdy construction
- The filter tank will get cracked after long-time use
Choosing the Best Pool Sand Filters
To purchase the most satisfying product, you need to be sure about its own features and functions. As for a pool sand filter, what is the most important information you need to be clear about? They are sand types, filter's size, and capacity. Let's get detailed.
A standard filtration medium is usually made of silica sand, the most common medium in sand filters. Silica sand is capable of catching dirt and debris as small as 10-20 microns.
Besides, there are still other sand alternatives available for you to choose from, such as zeosand and fiberglass.
Zeosand, which is in crystal-like shape, is made from zeolite minerals. Its filtering capacity is better than silica sand (able to trap smaller dirt and debris). Also, with a zeosand filter, you don’t need as frequent backwashing as a standard filter requires.
However, this type of filter sand comes in an extra expense, compared to silica sand.
As for fiberglass, to fill up your filter, you will need 20% less filter glass than silica sand. Besides, this finely crushed, recycled glass is able to filter out dirt and debris down to 5 microns size. It also lasts three times longer than a standard silica sand filter.
Of course, consider thoroughly before spending any extra money on this sand alternative.
The Filter Size
Large diameter means more square footage of filter area, which is able to clean up the adverse water faster. With sand filters, this quote is right: bigger is better. An oversized filter can definitely operate well
However, bigger filters mean higher expenses. No one wants to waste their money, right? So choosing the proper size for your filter is still recommended. The right size of your filter depends on your pool volume. These guidelines below will show you which diameter of the filter tank you need:
|Pool volume (gallons)||Filter size (inch)|
|10,000 - 20,000||21”24”|
|20,000 - 30,000||24”30”|
|30,000 - 50,000||30”36”|
Remember, an oversized sand filter is totally not a problem. But a marginal sand filter is not good for your filtration system. In the long run, it might even cost you more money for maintenance and replacement.
The Filter Capacity
Each filter and pump have their own design flow rates (GPM-gallons per minute). Some products come in a full filtration system, and pumps included. With these filters and pump sets, you won't need to care about matching problems.
However, for products with only filters available, you need to consider its flow requirement. Generally, the pump needs to be rated at the same or lower GPM than the best operation filter. It means a little bit undersized pump is totally fine to match with a filter at higher GPM.
But a filter with a lower design flow rate than the pump will cause problems. As the pump producing water too fast will lead to ineffective filtration and shorten the lifespan of the filter sand.
How Does a Pool Sand Filter Work?
Pool sand filtration technology is a traditional water filtration associated with the development history of the pool installation and construction industry worldwide. Installing a pool filter will make your pool more fresh and clean than ever.
The pool sand filter, containing many folds, is responsible for catching all the dirt, debris, and other particles. But correctly, how does it work? Now let's see.
Firstly, dirty water in the pool will be drained through the pipe system and water circulation system:
The bottom water collector will collect heavy contaminants from the bottom. The eye collecting water will raise the dirt that is suspended in the middle, and the surface decanting box will absorb the trash floating on the pool surface.
Secondly, when the pool's dirty water is brought to the sand filter, the filter material layers here will retain the function of dirt particles. Then the activated carbon layer will absorb all the toxins in the water.
After a period when the amount of waste accumulates too much, activated carbon will release the toxins into the water, and we must conduct rinsing and promptly replace the necessary filtration materials.
Thirdly, all types of specialized sand filters in the swimming pool are equipped with pressure gauges.
If the gauge indicates that the pressure in the supply pipe is much larger than the pressure in the outlet pipe, that means the surface of the equipment has been contaminated. At this time, it is necessary to periodically rinse the filter column to avoid clogging the entire system.
Finally, after water is filtered, a pump moves the clean water back into the pool.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Any questions about these sand filters? Let's check out some of these most common questions below to find your answers, if possible.
Swim Network Overview
Investing in a pool sand filter is a worth-the-value deal you definitely shouldn’t hesitate to make. A crystal clear, sparkling blue swimming pool is a desire of all pool owners. A pool sand filter is the most traditional and easiest-to-use tool among a mountain of pool cleaners.
For the best sand filter overall, I highly recommend XtremepowerUS 24" Pool Sand Filter System, a product made in the USA with its versatility in use and power in filtering capacity. For a reasonable price but quality product, take a look at Swimline 71225 Sand Master Pool Filter.
Other products also feature their outstanding points, such as Intex 26679EG Krystal Clear Saltwater can be connected to summer waves pools or GAME SandPRO 50D Series coming in compact design and adequate filtering capacity to be used in a small pool...etc.
I hope with my current reviews, you’ve found your most appropriate filter. Any questions on my reviews, please leave your comment below. If possible, press the button share on Facebook and Twitter. It would be a great encouragement for me. Thanks for reading.