Swimming Pool D.E. Filters, Diatomaceous earth, isa porous powder with microscopic openings that when magnified look like tiny sponges. Clear Swimming Pool D.E. Filter water can pass through these openings, but particles, as small as two to five microns, are trapped during the first pass through the media. Swimming Pool D.E. Filters have internal elements that become coated with D.E. It is this 'filter cake' that strains dirt, dust and algae from the pool water.