Programming an 5600SXT for maximum effenciency

Discussion in 'Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and r' started by ByteMe, Nov 11, 2012.

  1. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    Hello all,

    I recently purcased and installed a softener system from OhioPureWaterCompany. There were zero problems with the order and it shipped the next business day.

    What I have;

    SKU: SKU7221
    Product: Fleck 5600SXT Electronic 3/4 Inch Meter On Demand Control Valve Water Softener 64000 Grain Capacity with Vortech Technology
    Qty: 1
    Selected options:
    Fleck Valve Connection: 3/4 Inch Stainless Bypass Valve
    Tank Color Option: Almond
    Brine Tank Size: 18x33 Round Brine Tank
    Softening Resin (2.0 cuft): SST60 Resin


    12x52 Vortech resin tank
    2.0 cubic feet of resin
    13 gpm service flow rate
    3 gpm backwash flow rate


    Yes I specifically bought the Vortech tank and SST60 resin.


    As per http://www.qualitywaterassociates.com/sizing.php
    I currently have two people in the house (me and wife) with a compensated hardness of 40 gpg. Using the above linked tool, I get;

    Based on the information you entered, 4800 is your Daily Grains of Capacity needed. 38400 is the Total Grains of Capacity you need for approximately once per week regeneration with a 24 hr reserve. 2 is the minimum cubic foot size of softener required for your capacity needs.

    So far so good. My Iron is less than 2 ppm. I want to reprogram my system to achieve a good salt efficiency without major drawbacks. The 6 Pounds of salt Per Cubic Foot of Resin seems to be good.
    I have read through the 5600SXT manual, how do I program it to achieve this setting? I understand that it will electronically be set as a 40,000 grain system.

    Sorry, question two.
    I have cut the brine well tube to be 9 inches above the top of the slotted air check. As per instructions provided by OPWC, I have the refill time set to 12 minutes (14 minutes for regular resin). My concern is that the float cuts off the refill water coming in with 4-5 minutes left. Is this an issue? Is this because I have great water pressure (never tested but can tell it is strong)?

    I am thinking about adding a sediment and charcoal filter to this system. Will post about this some other time.

    *edit* Using the meter built into the 5600SXT, I have a peak flow of 9.1 gpm using the bathtub in the master bedroom (opposite end of house) (hot and cold) on full blast.


    *edit 2*

    Ok, after more reading, it seems the setting that effects the "salt efficiency" is the BF or brine fill setting. It seems I should set this to 7 and set the capacity of the softener 40 or 40,000. Is this it? Even at the seven minutes, my brine tank will fill up to the point of stopping because of the float valve. What am I missing?
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2012
  2. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    I have another question related to the above. Does the 5600SXT actually meter the amount of water put into the brine tank? If not, wouldn't this be a chance for the manufacturers to improve upon this process and exactly be able to control the amount of brine used for regeneration? The side effect would be to shorten the whole regeneration cycle. It seems to me that 60 minutes for the brine rinse is much more than what is really needed.

    Just thinking out loud.
  3. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    I think i have found it, http://www.caitechnologies.com/images/PDFs/specs/SST60.pdf.

    Ok, bear with me, my OCD has taken over.

    Using the 1st posts information and the link above;

    I figure using 6lb of salt per cubic foot of resin for regeneration is a good balance for salt efficiency/capacity/leakage. For the experts out there please verify my thinking/numbers. All my thinking and numbers come from the above link provided by the manufacturer.

    Correction factors figured at the end.
    As per figure 3 ; My pressure drop at a maximum 10GPM and 41F should be a bit less than .8psi because of the resin (control valve pressure drop not included)
    As per figure 4 ; My backwash resin bed expansion at 10GPM and 77F should be a minimum of 70%. Does the 5600SXT have a restrictior on the backwash rate?
    As per figure 5 ; The operational capacity per cubic foot of resin using 6lb salt efficiency is 22,500.
    As per figure 6 ; My leakage rate using 6lb salt efficiency should be right at .6ppm .

    As per figure 7 ; The correction factor for capacity @40 gpg using sodium is 17.2*40= 684ppm. So about 94% for a correction factor. The chart is not real good for determining an exact number. Did I do this correct?
    As per figure 8 ; The correction factor for capacity for total hardness is also about 94%. Correct ?
    As per figure 9 ; The correction factor for capacity at a flow rate of @10GPM ( I use 5 GPM because I have 2 ft3 of resin) (worst case I think) is = 94%
    Someone please help me understand figure 10 the correct factor for leakage.

    So,

    Capacity = 22,500 * 94% * 94% * 94% = 18,688

    So if I set me 5600SXT to a 19k capacity. HOW THE FLOCK DO I SET THE BRINE FILL TO ONLY USE 12lbs OF SALT?


    *edit* Double the above to 37,376 total capacity, I forgot to figure 2 ft3 of resin.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2012
  4. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    Using the same link as the previous post under "STANDARD OPERATING CONDITIONS";

    Backwash amount should equal 1.5-4 BV (figuring 7.5 gallons per ft3) would be 11.15 - 30 gallons per cubic foot, times two = 22.3- 60 gallons = @10 gpm flow 3-6 minutes time


    Sorry folks, that is it for today.
  5. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    The valve times the flow controlled flow of refill water and we get 3 lbs per gallon of water or 1.5 lbs/min. So you set the number of minutes of refill.

    You don't cut the brine well tube, you adjust the height of the float so it stops the water flow into the tank before it overflows the tank. Otherwise the float stops the water flow before you get the right number of gallons of water to dissolve the number of lbs of salt you need per regeneration for your k of capacity and you don't regenerate all the capacity that you used between regenerations.

    Both brine line and drain line flows are flow controlled so I'm thinking all that 94% stuff is useless, plus I've never heard of any of that. Bed volumes yes but you are way deeper into a softener than you need to be.
  6. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    So the 1.5lbs of salt consumption is figured just by time (per minute) ?

    With the high pressure I have, how can this be accurate?

    I had to cut the brine well tube because the float was attached to the bottom. I could of raised the tube but then I would not of been able to put the lid back on. The instructions even said to cut it.

    As far as being "way deeper" into the softener than needed. Sure, you are completely correct.... but then people buy cars that can do way more than the highest speed allowed on any roads. I have learnt to accept my engineering dispositioned personality (or as some people call it... analness). I prefer to think of it as passion.
  7. Tom Sawyer

    Tom Sawyer In the Trades

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    Location:
    Maine
    As long as the pressure is within the units operating range (between 40lbs and 80lbs typically) the brine fill and drain will operate withing the units parameters. Let the metered valve do it's thing.
  8. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,864
    Location:
    Ontario California
    The DLFC and BLFC on modern softeners is highly accurate regardless of pressure, so long as it is within the proper operating range as Tom said. The rubber button closes slightly as the pressure raises, giving a very accurate refill regardless of pressure (within reason).

    Altering the brine refill according to the actual capacity remaining is a "neat" idea, but is really only beneficial when a system is completely undersized. If you have a system regenerating past 5 days, you are in the highly efficient range. A system regenerating less than three times a week could benefit from "variable brining", but less than that... Many systems regenerate as little as every 15+ days, this is highly efficient, but in all reality, past 6-7 days, the efficiency gains become insignificant.
  9. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    The flow controls are very accurate regardless of your pressure but within the limits of the tank and valve, usually 20-100 or 120 psi.

    The brine well is the usually white 3" PVC 'tube' the float is in. The float hangs on the arm of a safety brine valve meant to stop salt tank overflow. Cheaper brine pick up floats, they don't hang on a valve, are used to control the amount of refill water and the float is slid up/dn on an 18" solid rod.

    What is cut is the usually 3/8" gray PVC tube the float is on. Some brine tanks have a float that is slid up or down on the tubing and you cut off the 3/8" tubing below the float once you adjust the float to where you need it. On the other type of float, the float is molded on the end of the tubing (like a bell on a stick) which sounds now as if you have that type. If you need the molded float higher you cut off the top of the 3/8" tubing so it can't prevent installing a brine well cap or the salt tank top from fitting properly as the float were to rise with the brine water rising.

    I say to adjust the safety type brine system float tubing so as the float shuts off the water flow just before it would exit the tank through the hollow overflow elbow going out through the brine well and the side of the salt tank, That way it can never interfere with the salt dose refill water level; as you say your float is doing now.

    IMO OPW should know better than to tell customers to measure up from the tank bottom or the grid but if they do that and it gets the float as high as possible and the float is stopping the refill flow too soon, then you have a too small salt tank for the amount of salt dose you have programmed for for the length of the service run you want. I.E. say like 20 days between regenerations, you need a lot of salt all at once instead of the much smaller amount a service run of say 7 to 9 days would require. An 18" round tank has like an inch of water per gallon of refill water but, if you keep the tank full of salt, you don't get much space for water before the float rises to shut the flow off. Dittohead and others suggesting 2-4 weeks between regenerations seem to never mention that... And larger salt tanks cost much more to purchase and ship and you only save on water going that long between regenerations but then you must increase the time of the cycle positions or you get improper backwash and rinse which uses more water and it might not get rid of all the sediment over the last 2-4 weeks that the resin has trapped and the resin fails.

    So THEN they then want to sell you a prefilter to prevent that. That increases your costs and maintenance time'n effort and you'll put that off as most guys do, and then suffer reduced pressure which isn't good for the resin. Plus the larger salt tanks take up much more floor space and more salt to fill them. Filling a salt tank usually leads to running out of salt, which can be bad for resin. I've always told my customers to fill the tank half full and check it weekly so they don't run out of salt. If you are using high salt efficiency setting, you need to regenerate the resin with the max of 15lbs/cuft to get all the resin regenerated and usually once isn't enough so you should do it twice, one right after the other, with no water use during or between the two manual regenerations. And if your salt tank is full of salt you won't be able to get that much refill water in the tank without the float shutting it off.... That much water in your case will be 10 gallons for 30 lbs for the 2 cuft of resin. So if the salt tank is more than a say quarter or half full, that requires removing salt before regenerating. And then having enough salt for the second 30 lbs.
  10. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    As per my first post in this thread, my brine tank is = Brine Tank Size: 18x33 Round Brine Tank

    I haven't done the math, but is that enough for a 30lb salt load to achieve the 64k capacity?

    hmm... isn't that about 10 gallons of water?
  11. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,864
    Location:
    Ontario California
    There is no reason to do a 30# salting on a residential application. It is extremely wasteful. The maximum salt dose should be at 8 pounds per cu. ft giving you approximately 24,000 grains per cu. ft.

    But.. to answer your question, an 18" tank will give you approximately 1.1 gallons of water per inch, average 50% displacement for salt, giving you approximately .5 gallons per inch, 33" - 3" for air check on the bottom, and 5" at the top for overflow, giving you 25" available (not including safety float calculations...

    Technically, the 18x33 could work but it would not be recommended.

    Extremely high salting is typically only done by companies that sell salt, for obvious reasons, or for commercial applications that require extremely soft water (low hardness ppm, not calculabe by normal testing methods)
  12. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    Ok,

    I think I will try this, set my capacity to 38,000 and the BF minutes to 7. That should be 3619 grains per lb of salt, think this will work well?

    This also gives me 7-8 days between regenerations for the 2 people living in my house.


    *edit* someone please explain to me the process and why it takes 60 minutes for the brine draw step.
  13. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,864
    Location:
    Ontario California
    Brine and rinse is as stated. The brine draw rate is determined by several factors including pressure, injector size etc. The actual brine draw should be done in approximately 15 minutes. (please no debate, every manufacturer has a different formula for efficiency etc, this is just a general comment). The brine draw occurs by the softener directing the water through a venturi injetor which creates a vacuum on the brine line, thereby drawing in the brine solution from the brine tank. This dilutes the brine depending on the system design and the injector efficiency. The water in the brine tank should be removed completely in about 15 minutes to allow for proper contact time etc inside the mineral tank. Once the brine is removed from the brine tank the system is now considered to be in "slow rinse". The water is still going theough the injector but is no longer diluting brine, it is just slowly rinsing the resin bed. This should take approximately 30-40 minutes to remove the brine from the tank, the remaining is a safety factor to allow for some variances in brine draw, injector efficiency, etc. It wastes very little water so brine draw time is not usually considered a critical setting except in areas where the waste water must be hauled off, then we will set the brine and rinse cycle a little more carefully. I have posted the common injector sizes for the 7000, the 5600 are very similar in their draw and flow rates. 7000 injector draw.jpg
  14. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    Here are my settings, comments wanted (5600SXT meter, 2 cubic foot of SST resin, 12x52 vortex tank);

    DF= GAL
    VT = dflb
    CT = Fd
    NT = 1
    C = 38
    H = 40
    RS = rc
    RC = 120
    DO = 10
    RT = 2:00
    BW = 10
    BD = 50
    RR = 12 Should I set this to 10 ?
    BF = 7
    FM = t0.7 Is this the correct Turbine Meter? (has to be this or P0.7 Paddle Wheel)

    Dittohead, what is the ratio of water used through the venturi injetor vs water through the brine line from the brine tank ?

    My interest would be shortening the amount of time for the brine draw (time being more important than the small amount of water). On the above graph you posted (thanks by the way)... The RINSE line is the rinse after the brine has been completly drawn out... not the rapid rinse? ***edit*** explain the two lines; is the DRAW line (from brine tank) and Rinse line (through injector to sewer) happening at same time?
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  15. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    You want all the usable brine out of the salt tank in the first 15-20 minutes of the brine draw/slow rinse cycle. The slow rinse water flow is used to cause that to happen and it continues to flow to rinse the resin with the brine and then to rinse the salt water out of the resin tank.

    Depending on how much salt you use, you can shorten the 60 minutes some but if you do so too much, you may not get the salt out of the resin bed with the rapid rinse and you'll have salty tasting water. IMO you are better off to not micro manage this.
  16. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    This is what i did using the figures from; http://www.caitechnologies.com/images/PDFs/specs/SST60.pdf

    Capacity = 30,000
    Hardness = 40
    Reserve = 120 gallons
    Days Override = 8
    Backwash = 5 minutes
    BrineDraw = 30 minutes
    Rapid Rinse = 8 minutes
    Brine Fill = 4 minutes (there is a sticker on the WS that says .5 gallon /1.5lbs)

    So, 30,000 grains / 6lbs should be 5,000 salt efficiency ?

    Can this bad boy softener do it well?

    I figure that I might get away with these reduced times because I have great pressure (I know the unit will restrict) and am dosing at such a low level. I figure worst case it doesn't work and I try a lower salt efficiency (re-figure everything again) and send Gary hate mail for being correct. Or I can bump up the BF setting to get me 7.5lbs and a 4,000 efficiency.

    BTW; a 47 minute regen is kewl
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2012
  17. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
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    Location:
    Midland Texas
    Come on, no-one?

    Anyone else try settings like this? I want to hear your experiences.
  18. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

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    1,864
    Location:
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    Salt settings are more than just grains per gallon. Water efficiencies, hardness leakage, time between regenerations, etc all have to be considered. Systems can be set to as low as 3 pounds of salt per cubic foot, but the water quality is usually below customers expectations. 4 pounds per cubic foot is the minimum most companies will do so as to maintain quality, and 6-8 pounds almost ensures near perfect quality. Below is a hardness leakage chart. With all this being said, if you are happy with the results and you are efficient, then it is all good!

    My major problem is when companies set softeners to use 10-15 pounds of salt per cu. ft, this gets out of the reasonable efficiency range and ventures into unnecessary waste.
    capacity leakage.jpg
    An article written by one of the best minds in this industry (Chubb Michaud) explains it far better than I ever could. It goes into a detailed analysis and reasoning behind maintaining truly soft water vs. slightly hard water. http://www.wcponline.com/pdf/1203Michaud.pdf

    My system has a considerably longer regeneration time, approximately 105 minutes, but it is set to the exact application. It only regeenrates monthly at most, and the system is set with a smaller injector for various reasons that are not worth discussing here since it gets very wonky. I also run slightly longer backwash times since I am using KDF media as one of the filtration processes, this media loves to be backwashed regularly and aggresssively.
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2012
  19. ByteMe

    ByteMe New Member

    Messages:
    61
    Location:
    Midland Texas
    I used data from the SST60 data sheet which is similar to yours but "better".

    Wonder what the chance is that the SST60 data is not really accurate.



    SST-60 C-100


    Leakage Leakage
    NaCl
    (#/CF) (ppm) (ppm)


    2 2.1 3.7

    3 1.3 2.1

    4 0.9 1.4

    5 0.7 1.2

    6 0.6 1.1

    7 0.5 0.9

    8 0.4 0.8

    9 0.35 0.7

    10 0.3 0.6

    12 0.2 0.5

    15 0.1 0.4
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2012
  20. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,864
    Location:
    Ontario California
    Hardness leakage is actually very comnplex, the charts are simple guidlines to help us understand the potential or likelihood of hardness leakage. Resin age, quality, fouling, flow rates, remaining capacity, etc. all have to be considered. For resideantial applications, most people are very happy with 10 PPM or less, commercial applications that require hardness <3ppm is where it gets exteremely complex, maintaining below this hardness requires considerabnly more expertise, fortunately this is not common and rarely an isue in residential sitiuations.

    My recommendation, use standard resin numbers and capacities, use no less than 4 pounds of salt per cu. ft., and you will be fine.
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