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Intex Pool Pump Setup: How to Install a Filter Pump (6 Steps)

Just got yourself an Intex Krystal Clear cartridge filter pump? Find yourself confused by the instruction manual?

Don’t worry, you’re not alone. The good news is, installing this filter pump is much easier than it looks.

Whether you’re connecting this up to an Intex, Bestway, or other temporary above-ground pool, this guide will simplify the setup process into 6 easy to follow steps.

Important: This article is specifically for the more common Intex cartridge filter pump (like this one), NOT the Intex sand filter pump.

Intex Pool Pump Setup Process (Step by Step)

Follow this process:

Step 1. Prep the Pool

Before setting up your Intex pool filter pump, there’s some groundwork to be done (quite literally). Make sure your Intex pool is on level ground, on a secure foundation, and well-positioned.

  • Uneven ground will lead to an uneven water level, which, in extreme enough circumstances, can allow air to seep into the filtration system and cause issues with the pool pump.
  • A poor foundation (or base) can eventually develop a slope, causing the pool the lean. The wrong foundation can also damage and tear the vinyl liner, leading to leaks and severe water loss.
  • The filter pump itself will sit close to the pool and will need a relatively close power socket to run, so if you want to avoid running endless cables across your property, positioning is key.

Note: While Intex recommends installing on an empty pool, it’s not necessary to drain if your pool is already filled. The following steps will work in either scenario.

Step 2. Check Your Components

Again, if you haven’t done so already, it’s a good idea to unbox the filter pump and all its components.

Not only do you do want to ensure you have everything as advertised, but you should also familiarize yourself with the different pieces as it will help you work through the next steps more efficiently.

The filter pump itself (for step 3):

  • Filter housing
  • Filter cartridge
  • Air release valve
  • Filter housing collar
  • Valve o-ring
  • Cover seal

The hoses and fittings: (for step 4):

  • Hose (x2)
  • Hose seal ring (x2)
  • Hose clamp (x4)
  • Air jet valve
  • Inlet aerator adaptor
  • Strainer grid
  • Inlet strainer connector
  • Strainer connector
  • Inlet jet nozzle

Step 3. Assemble the Filter Pump

Got everything laid out? Great, let’s start putting it all together.

For this step, you’ll need all the components listed above for the filter pump itself as we’re going to assemble that first.

Here’s the order to follow:

  1. Take the filter housing
  2. Place the cartridge filter inside the housing
  3. Place the rubber o-ring inside the filter housing rim
  4. Place the housing cover on top
  5. Place and tighten the housing collar
  6. Tighten the air release valve on the housing cover

Note: You don’t need any additional tools. All parts that require screwing are threaded and should be tightened completely by hand.

Step 4. Attach the Hoses and Fittings

For this step, you’ll need all the components listed above for the hoses and fittings. We’re going to assemble and attach each hose individually.

Remember, both hoses are identical so it doesn’t matter which one you decide to use for each of the following steps.

For the first hose:

  1. Attach the aerator adaptor to one end of the hose
  2. Attach the same end to the upper hose opening on the pool
  3. Clip a hose clamp to secure it (outside of the pool)
  4. Take one of the strainer connectors and the inlet jet nozzle
  5. Attach both to secure the hose (inside of the pool)
  6. Place a hose seal ring on the upper port of the filter pump
  7. Attach the loose hose end directly to this port
  8. Clip a hose clamp to secure it

For the second hose:

  1. Attach it to the lower hose opening on the pool (no fitting needed)
  2. Clip a hose clamp to secure it (outside of the pool)
  3. Take the other strainer connector and the strainer grid
  4. Attach both to secure the hose (inside of the pool)
  5. Place a hose seal ring on the lower port of the filter pump
  6. Attach the loose hose end directly to this port
  7. Clip a hose clamp to secure it

Step 5. Ensure the Pump is Free of Air

Important: If you haven’t already filled your pool, do that now. This step cannot be performed properly if the pool is empty.

Before switching the pump on, you need to make sure there’s no air in the pump or hoses. The more air in your system, the less water will be actually be filtered through it. Severe cases can also lead to an issue called “air lock”.

To purge air from your pump and hoses:

  1. Place the pump at ground level (next to the pool)
  2. Open the air release valve (small knob on the lid)
  3. Allow air and water to flow out until it stops bubbling
  4. Lift and shake the hoses to help any last bit of air out
  5. Tighten the air release valve

Note: You can also repeat this process later on if you see too many bubbles coming into your pool. Just be sure to turn off the pump first.

Step 6. Turn It On (Check for Leaks)

That’s the hard part done! Now, plug the pump into your mains electrical supply and turn it on.

After turning the filter pump on, you should almost immediately see the jets pumping water into the pool.

Just be sure to check for any leaks around the hose connections (both ends), as these can seriously hinder the filtration process and lead to significant loss of water over time.

How to Clean the Filter

Intex cartridge filters get dirty pretty quickly, and you will see a drop in your water quality once the cartridge gets too clogged up.

For this reason, it’s important to maintain your pool by cleaning the filter at least once per week under light use, and as much as every day under heavy use — after all, the more often your pool is used, the more contaminants the filter has to process.

Here’s how to remove and clean the cartridge:

  1. Turn the pump off by the mains power
  2. Place the pump above water level (to cut off the flow of water)
  3. Open the air release valve (the knob on the lid)
  4. Remove the lid from the pump
  5. Unscrew and remove the housing collar
  6. Take out the filter cartridge
  7. Hose down the filter to remove debris
  8. Put the filter back in the filter pump housing
  9. Reassemble the filter pump (same steps in reverse)
  10.  Follow step 5 (previous section) to purge air from the pump
  11.  Turn the pump back on

You won’t be able to clean it forever, though. Eventually, after many weeks or months (depending on use), the cartridge will become too worn to effectively filter anything from your water.

As soon as the cartridge appears visibly worn, this means it’s time to throw it out and replace the entire cartridge with a new one.

Intex Type A Filter Cartridge for...
Intex Type A Filter Cartridge for...
  • Now available in a convenient twin pack
  • Easy to clean Dacron fiber material
  • Filter cartridge should be replaced every two...

Just Follow the Steps

Intex doesn’t always lay things out in the most intuitive way, which is why it’s sometimes better to seek out third-party instructions.

Regardless of which instructions you use, this setup process should take you no longer than 30 minutes from start to finish if you’re not also trying to hook up a heating solution alongside it.

Good luck!

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