Fleck 9000 rebuild problem

Discussion in 'Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and r' started by martin1b, Mar 24, 2014.

  1. martin1b

    martin1b New Member

    Messages:
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    Hi, I'm replacing pistons and seals on my fleck 9000. Trying to pull out seals and they are stuck. Also, there's a lot of oxidation on the bores, as you can see.

    Any trick to getting these things out? What should I do with the bores? Just some dull emery cloth and carefully clean it up? IMG_5731_800X600.JPG IMG_5730_800X600.JPG
  2. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

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    Some water conditions will cause the problem you have. Pay close attention to the center section of the lower piston, if it is rotted out, the valve body will need to be replaced. My suggestion would be to replace the valve at this point. I would recommend the 9100SXT. It is a plastic version of the 9000 and is a better valve for difficult water conditions.

    That is an unusual version of the valve. The 1" meter was not very common except for hot water applications. How old is the valve?

    The 9100 SXT will require some minor replumbing since the meter is different, but it also has an available bypass and many different plumbing connections.
  3. martin1b

    martin1b New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Here is a pic of the lower piston. Looks ok to me but I don't have a trained eye. What do you think? It's 10 years old and hope I can get more time out of it.

    IMG_5733_800X600.JPG IMG_5732_800X600.JPG

    Bit of background: The well that was originally measured to use this softener isn't even in use anymore. I went to a much softer one in comparison.

    If I have to replace the valve body, that's practically the cost of a new head on a simpler unit. If the water is softer, is it possible to put a different head on but use the rest? I doubt I really need a double tank unit.
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2014
  4. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    That piston is destroyed. It looks like it has seen its final days. The main problem on the older 9000 is the valve body in the lower section. If you can remove the seals from the front and rear you can look straight through the valve. It should be round, not egg shaped when you look through it. The lower center piston area can erode away making the valve body non re-buildable. If you can, remove the guts, and post a picture of the inside of the valve bodys lower piston area.

    Your idea to clean up the valve body with a little emery clot will work if the valve body is not too heavily damaged.


    Replacing the system with a single tank unit would be fine assuming you can get beyond5 days between regeneration. Less than 5 days and the system really starts to become very inefficient. Do you have some water tests and usage? How many people in the house? Pipe size? Number of bathrooms?
  5. martin1b

    martin1b New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Firstly, thank you for taking time to help me!

    Trying to take the seals out and they are coming out literally in pieces, they're so tight. I have to drill out the plastic, careful not to hit the bore, and use a needle nose to pull them out. I'm nervous that I could pollute the resin. Is that possible? Should I continue or is this a lost cause?

    IMG_5740_800X600.JPG IMG_5739_800X600.JPG
  6. Akpsdvan

    Akpsdvan In the Trades

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    I my self would be looking at taking the valve body off the tank and working on it on a bench.
    Also when the valve body is off the tank one could use maybe some white vinegar to soak the body in to clean things up and maybe loosen the seal kit in the body to remove.
    Also do not forget that there is a back half to the lower seals and spacers.
    The lower piston is going to need replacing.... the one photo shows the middle part coming apart.
  7. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

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    Location:
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    Agreed. Remove the valve from the tank. You will need to completely tear the system down and rebuild it. When valves were really bad like this, we would clean them with a pipe cleaning brush attached to a drill. We would simply cut the handle off.

    I know this is not the proper way to clean it, but since the valve body is as bad as it is, and we have been doing it for 25+ years, it will be fine.

    [​IMG]
  8. Akpsdvan

    Akpsdvan In the Trades

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    Cordless drill and brush with the handle removed... been doing that for years , to clean the copper fittings.
    Using it on the brass valve works.

    Some thing tells me that the valve should have had a rebuild years ago.
  9. martin1b

    martin1b New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Will do. 2 more questions.

    1) how does the valve body connect to the tank? Tried turning by hand but want to make sure before I put a wrench on it.

    2) Can i take the back plate off of the lower bore to access the seals? If so, there is likely a gasket. Is it reusable?

    Thanks for the help!
  10. Akpsdvan

    Akpsdvan In the Trades

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    Un do the screws that hold the yoke for the cross over tubes, and the screws that hold the meter assembly to the valve and then the valve will un screw from the top of the tank.
    The age of the system might need two people to do this, one to hold the tank and the other to work on the valve body.
    There is a square plate on the back of the valve that will need to be removed so that the back half of the lower seal pack can be removed.
    Do you not have the book for the 9000-9100-9500?
  11. martin1b

    martin1b New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Found a book for it. Yep, it took 2 people to get it off. However, when we pulled the valve body up, the drop tube came up with it a couple of inches. I can't work it down much. Is that an issue?
  12. Akpsdvan

    Akpsdvan In the Trades

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    There is gravel at the bottom of the tank and the tube will have to be flush..
    Take some 1/2 poly tubing and run one end down the distributor and siphon out the water , then lay the tank on the floor and roll from side to side til media just starts to come out and one should be able to get the tube back down to the bottom of the tank , then stand up.

    Now if you have a really good air compressor with the water out of the tank blow air and a big amount to move the tube back down to the bottom.. water the same way but any number do not have the amount needed to make it happen.
  13. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

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    Once the valve is gutted, post a picture of the lower section internal area. There is a brass divider between the front and back that is subject to erosion. Once it is damaged, the valve body should be replaced.
  14. martin1b

    martin1b New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Got the seals out and here are the pics. I had to use a drill to pop a hole so I could use a needle nose to get them out. Couldn't get them out any other way. When I got to the last one, the bit went a little bit into the brass (see arrow).

    Thoughts?


    IMG_5747_640X480.jpg IMG_5744_640X480.JPG
  15. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

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    Location:
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    Not a problem at all. The body looks to be in excellent shape. Clean it up and rebuild it, it should go another 10 years.
  16. martin1b

    martin1b New Member

    Messages:
    20
    That's great news. One last question. There was one seal that was thicker than the rest. I believe it was on the back side of the brass divider in the bottom bore. Is that correct? I'm trying to make sure I put all the seals back correctly. Can you confirm?

    Thanks for all of the help!!
  17. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

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    Location:
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    Seal or spacer?

    There is one spacer that is different than the other spacers. It goes on the back lower piston. Seal, odd spacer, seal, regular spacer, seal, regular spacer, seal, regular spacer, seal, regular spacer, seal, stub end plug.
  18. martin1b

    martin1b New Member

    Messages:
    20
    I cleaned the valve like you said with pipe brush and it cleaned it up pretty nice. However, I noticed some minor pitting. Should I also clean the surfaces up with emery cloth?

    What are the critical surfaces? I guess my question is, what are you looking for to determine if a valve is bad or not.

    Thanks!

    IMG_5750_640X480.JPG IMG_5748_640X480.jpg IMG_5749_640X480.jpg IMG_5752_800X600.jpg
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2014
  19. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

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    Location:
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    That amouint of pitting looks fine, rebuild it and let us know how it works.
  20. martin1b

    martin1b New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Put it back together. I must say, the end cap of the back bore and the front plastic face that covers the 2 front bores are pretty tight. I ran a regeneration with no leaks and everything appeared to work properly. So far so good.

    Thanks for the help!!
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