Fleck 7000 not softening or consuming salt

Discussion in 'Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and r' started by SES, Nov 10, 2011.

  1. SES

    SES New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    TX
    I just purchased a house with a Fleck 7000 system and have lived there for just over 2 months and noticed we have not consumed any salt. I’ve manually run several regenerations, confirmed all settings (H-18, all the rest set at default), monitored the system cycle and noticed the water level in the brine tank is just a few inches and does not rise above the metal grid at the bottom of the brine tank or near the float on the check valve. I manually added water and ran regeneration and it consumed salt, and I verified its adding back water, but it looks like I’d need to increase the refill time from the default 10 min. to 20+ to get the water level up past the grid. Should I change the refill time, or is something else wrong. Water hardness is 18, I’m not sure of the size of the system; (it’s a chrome cylinder about 4 ft. tall). We’re a family of four and have a pool, so we’re consuming allot of water.
  2. mialynette2003

    mialynette2003 Member

    Messages:
    738
    Location:
    Ocala, Florida
    It sounds to me that the air check is below the grid plate. I've seen this happen many times. The air check should be centered of the grid plate. If it's not the bottom, the fill time will not allow enough water to come above the grid. Measure the distant from the bottom of the brine tank to the bottom of the elbow of the brine line. Then measure the from the bottom of the air check to the bottom of the elbow. Bet they are real close. Should be about 4" difference.
  3. SES

    SES New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    TX
    I'm new to water softeners so I'll need some clarification.

    In the brine tank I have a large plastic tube and inside that is the filler tube and a check valve assembly triggered by two floats. (A small float at the bottom that appears to stop the system from sucking air into the system once the water drops to a certine level, than a overflow shut off triggered from a larger flow attached midway up the tube). Its not the “safety brine valve” and “aircheck assembly” shown in the manual.

    The distance bettween the upper shut off float and the bottom (what I’m assuming is the air check assembly) is maybe a foot. The air check is just off the bottom of the brine tank several inches (maybe 6”) below the grid.
  4. mialynette2003

    mialynette2003 Member

    Messages:
    738
    Location:
    Ocala, Florida
    Can you remove the assembly from the brine well (large plastic tube)? Look at the air check to see if the words "Check Height" are on it. If so, that shoud be center of the grid plate. Can you post a pic or send it to me at affordablewtr@aol.com
  5. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    If he sets the Air Check at the grid, he never uses any of the heavier salt water below the Check Height line. His set up is correct. Salt grids usually have salt below the grid, in the water below the Check Height line on a Fleck 500 air check. The refill water does not have to rise up to or above the grid for proper salt dosing.

    It seems the softener is refilling and drawing brine water as it should so, IMO he has something else wrong as long as his water is not soft based on him actually doing a hardness test.

    He may have hardness break through and need to do two manual regenerations at the max lbs of salt of 15 lbs/cuft of resin back to back with no water use during or between them to bring the resin back to full capacity to stop the break through.
  6. SES

    SES New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    TX
    I attached pictures of the valve assembly. Check height was not listed.

    • The valve rest on the bottom of the brine well.
    • The water level is 5 inches.
    • The grid height is 7 inches.

    Just to clarify, since I purchased the house over two months ago, there have been several regenerations, but no reduction in level of salt. I poured water into the brine well (gallon or so) and did two regenerations yesterday (added water manually both times) and the salt level dropped significantly. So it appears that either the water level needs to rise above the grid, or maybe the salt clumped and stopped dropping down past the grid.

    I dug my hands into the salt and could feel at least one small 1.5 inch hole, but could not tell if it was a true hole that allowed salt down or just an stamped indentation.

    Also, I don’t know the capacity of my system. The softening cylinder is chrome 54” high and 10” inch wide. Can you tell the size from this? Does the system size influence the brine refill time?
  7. mialynette2003

    mialynette2003 Member

    Messages:
    738
    Location:
    Ocala, Florida
    And if it's the type of grid plate that does not allow salt below the plate level, then water will never touch the salt. I was taught that the check height was set at the plate height. This will insure salt meets water. In his case with the pickup being on the bottom, the water will not rise enough the contact the salt.
  8. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    I don't see any attached pictures...

    I have never seen or heard of a metal salt grid. Salt grids used in the last 20 yrs or more have been plastic and have coffee cup shaped hollow legs that go down to the bottom of the salt tank and support the grid and salt on it.

    When you add salt it goes down into the legs and the water in the salt tank dissolves what it can until the water is saturated and can not dissolve any more. Salt water is heavy and when brine refill adds water to the salt tank it 'floats' on top of the salt brine as it dissolves salt, gets heavy and falls to the bottom of the tank mixing with the other brine. If the refill water is cooler than the brine water, cooler sinks so that also helps mix it with the brine water.

    An 18" round salt tank holds one gallon of water per inch of water. A 15" x 17" about the same.

    I suggest removing salt until the grid is exposed enough to see if there are hollow legs and salt in them. Digging out the salt will also cure any salt bridge. If not then the air check should be raised. If there are legs and salt in them then it should work as is as long as the control valve is allowing the full refill volume of water and sucking it out during slow rinse/brine draw. If not then there is something wrong with the control valve.
  9. mialynette2003

    mialynette2003 Member

    Messages:
    738
    Location:
    Ocala, Florida
    Boy, this can be very confusing to the OP. In one post you state, "His set up is correct". Now you say he should raise the air check. I don't think any of us have seen a metal grid plate either. But I have seen grid plates with no hollow legs.
  10. Tom Sawyer

    Tom Sawyer In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,233
    Location:
    Maine
    At any rate I would remove the salt, clean the tank out and see what's going on down there.

    10 x 54 = 48,000 grains with an 18 x 33 brine tank and a capacity of between 9 and 22.5 lbs of salt per regeneration depending on settings.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2011
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