Effectiveness of Resin in Water Softener

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WorldPeace

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Hello, Everyone,

I recently installed a new water softener about 2 months ago. When first installed, it worked great. The water actually felt soft (aka slippery). Dishes in the dishwasher came out sparkling.

But, now, the water isn't as soft. The water doesn't feel as slippery as before. And, the dishes in my dishwasher don't come out as clean as before. And, the dishes don't come out as clean as before. There is a slight white residue (aka lime) on the door of the dishwasher after a load is done.

I'm wondering what's going wrong. My water hardness is a 27 so it's relatively hard. And, I paid for 10% crosslinked resin. (I'm now wondering if I got the 10% that I paid for.)

Any advice is appreciated. Thanks!
 
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Reach4

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Make sure water is being drawn out each cycle. Make sure water is being added. Does the brine tank have a lot of liquid in it? Is this a cabinet type softener? There are things that can prevent brine from being drawn.

How much salt do you have in the brine tank?

You may need to raise the hardness setting on the softener to have it regenerate more often.
 

WorldPeace

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Make sure water is being drawn out each cycle. Make sure water is being added. Does the brine tank have a lot of liquid in it? Is this a cabinet type softener? There are things that can prevent brine from being drawn.

How much salt do you have in the brine tank?

You may need to raise the hardness setting on the softener to have it regenerate more often.

I'm putting it through a manual regeneration right now so I'll see if water is actually being added and drawn. Can you tell me when during the process the brine is supposed to be drawn from the tank? I'm midway through the BD process and I don't believe it ever drew the brine. The water softener is constantly emptying water into the drain though. Maybe I missed the brine draw process? I've been sitting next to it, checking every ten minutes.

With respect to all the other questions:

The brine tank is filled up to about 1/2 way up.

This is a standard water softener with a separate brine tank and fiberglass resin tank.

I have about 3 bags of salt inside, which fills about a 1/4 of the tank.

I'll raise the hardness and see if that helps.

Fleck 5600SXT
Hardness: 27
2.0 cubic feet
 

Reach4

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Some salt should always be above the liquid.

In the suggestion below, I guessed 2 people. Adjust RC if not two. Also check whether you have the paddlewheel or turbine.

Usually brine is drawn after backwash, and refilled last.

System info (not programmed)
salt lb/cuft = 7.5 ; A choice ( efficiency vs capacity)
BLFC = 0.5 ; Brine Refill rate GPM
cubic ft resin = 2 ; ft3 resin = (nominal grains)/32,000
Compensated hardness = 31 ; including any compensation
People = 2 ; gallons affects reserve calc
Estimated gal/day = 120 ; 60 gal per person typical calc
Estimated days/regen = 12.39 ; Computed days including reserve

Fleck 5600SXT Settings:
DF = Gal ; Units
VT = dF1b ; Downflw/, Single Backwash, black cam
CT = Fd ; Meter Delayed regen trigger
NT = 1 ; Number of tanks
C = 46 ; capacity in 1000 grains
H = 31 ; Hardness-- compensated up from 27
RS = rc ; rc says use gallons vs percent
RC = 120 ; Reserve capacity gallons
DO = 30 ; Day Override (28 if no iron)
RT = 2:00 ; Regen time (default 2 AM)
BW = 5 ; Backwash (minutes)
Bd = 60 ; Brine draw minutes
RR = 5 ; Rapid Rinse minutes
BF = 10 ; Brine fill minutes
FM = ____0.7 ; https://terrylove.com/forums/index.php?attachments/img_fleck5600sxt_flow-png.31592/
Check which one you have!
 

WorldPeace

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Some salt should always be above the liquid.

In the suggestion below, I guessed 2 people. Adjust RC if not two. Also check whether you have the paddlewheel or turbine.

Usually brine is drawn after backwash, and refilled last.

System info (not programmed)
salt lb/cuft = 7.5 ; A choice ( efficiency vs capacity)
BLFC = 0.5 ; Brine Refill rate GPM
cubic ft resin = 2 ; ft3 resin = (nominal grains)/32,000
Compensated hardness = 31 ; including any compensation
People = 2 ; gallons affects reserve calc
Estimated gal/day = 120 ; 60 gal per person typical calc
Estimated days/regen = 12.39 ; Computed days including reserve

Fleck 5600SXT Settings:
DF = Gal ; Units
VT = dF1b ; Downflw/, Single Backwash, black cam
CT = Fd ; Meter Delayed regen trigger
NT = 1 ; Number of tanks
C = 46 ; capacity in 1000 grains
H = 31 ; Hardness-- compensated up from 27
RS = rc ; rc says use gallons vs percent
RC = 120 ; Reserve capacity gallons
DO = 30 ; Day Override (28 if no iron)
RT = 2:00 ; Regen time (default 2 AM)
BW = 5 ; Backwash (minutes)
Bd = 60 ; Brine draw minutes
RR = 5 ; Rapid Rinse minutes
BF = 10 ; Brine fill minutes
FM = ____0.7 ; https://terrylove.com/forums/index.php?attachments/img_fleck5600sxt_flow-png.31592/
Check which one you have!

Actually, your first guess was right! It wasn't drawing any brine from the brine tank!

I noticed that the water line wasn't moving. So, I stuck the brine line directly into the water and felt the line. There was water turbulence for the first time. After an hour of fiddling around with it, I found out that there isn't an airtight seal in the float mechanism.

I just looked up the parts manual and it looks like I'm missing a gasket. I might have dropped it during installation but that's doubtful since there was no reason to take the head of the float mechanism apart. Oh well.

Mystery finally solved. Thanks so much!

I'm having it draw directly from the water. The water line goes down very slowly which I'm suspecting is normal. Hopefully, I'll get to feel how soft water feels again!
 

MaxBlack

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Hello, Everyone,

I recently installed a new water softener about 2 months ago. When first installed, it worked great. The water actually felt soft (aka slippery). Dishes in the dishwasher came out sparkling.

But, now, the water isn't as soft. The water doesn't feel as slippery as before. And, the dishes in my dishwasher don't come out as clean as before. And, the dishes don't come out as clean as before. There is a slight white residue (aka lime) on the door of the dishwasher after a load is done.

I'm wondering what's going wrong. My water hardness is a 27 so it's relatively hard. And, I paid for 10% crosslinked resin. (I'm now wondering if I got the 10% that I paid for.)

Any advice is appreciated. Thanks!
It's possible WP that your new softener has never done a proper brine rinse at all. At least, when I lived in Texas I bought a WS by mail order and the valve wasn't right on it. This was almost 20 years ago but iirc I had to repack the valve as it wasn't right from the supplier.

I might be inclined to put the drain hose into a 5 gallon bucket and see what the rinse water is like.
 

WorldPeace

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It's possible WP that your new softener has never done a proper brine rinse at all. At least, when I lived in Texas I bought a WS by mail order and the valve wasn't right on it. This was almost 20 years ago but iirc I had to repack the valve as it wasn't right from the supplier.

I might be inclined to put the drain hose into a 5 gallon bucket and see what the rinse water is like.

You're right. Never did a rinse at all. And, I was wondering if my water was getting hard. I thought I might just be imagining things!
 

MaxBlack

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Ha we posted at the same time yesterday so I missed yours.

Awesome that you appear to have found your problem--it seems that might have been my own problem 20 years ago. I didn't write it down, and the brain cells ain't what they used to be...

Come back and tell us you have soft water again. Though it might take a while to "feel" given the hard stuff in your water heater! Of course, if you have a test kit (which you should) you can test your cold water alone...
 
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