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CARTRIDGE ANATOMY
 
The spa filter cartridge and pool filter cartridges have a basic "anatomy" that is similar between all cartridges.
 
There are two end caps, one on the top and one on the bottom. These have openings for the water flow. Occasionally you will have a "closed" end cap on one end. The end caps may be soft and pliable or hard and sturdy depending on the type of filter you have.
 
Some spa filters will have adapters on one end. These are to secure the filter to the spa unit. Adapters vary in size and type depending on your spa requirements.
 
Occasionally there will be a handle or raised area on the top of the filter, this is to assist in inserting and removing the cartridge from the filter unit or spa. Handle styles will vary.
 
In the center of the cartridge there is usually a "core", some smaller spa filters and very large pool cartridges will not have a center core. The purpose of the core is to add stability to the pleated spunbond polyester material that makes up the filtration media.
 
The pleats that surround the core are made from 100% spunbond polyester. This material is what actually filters the water. For further explanation of the media please see: Filter Cartridge Media - What is it? Some spa filters will have a Microban Antimicrobial finish as an option. To learn more about microban see the article What is Microban Antimicrobial?
 
On the outer circumference of the pleats there will be "bands" that go around the filter.  These are made of 100% spunbond polyester and are adhered to the pleats for added strength and stability.  See the article Why are bands on Filter Cartridges? for further explanation.