Fleck 5600SXT: Inverted water flow discovered during installation

Discussion in 'Water Softener Forum, Questions and Answers' started by ShouldaCalledAPlumber, Jun 26, 2020.

  1. ShouldaCalledAPlumber

    ShouldaCalledAPlumber New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2020
    Location:
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Plumber inverted the water flow (in-out reversed) at initial installation, and ran water through the new tank for 25-30 minutes before error was discovered. The Fleck valve was not plugged in or in-use during this time -- it was just water running contra-flow through system.

    Only water source open was cold water spigot at one bathtub. So far does not appear to have resin in plumbing circuits, as no noticeable drop in flow rate in home, but haven't opened anything up to inspect. Hot water heater was turned off during this time.

    Plumber said he will "do whatever is needed to make this right". At this point, I haven't ask for him to do anything, as everything seems okay, although I am having an issue where the water meter is not registering consistently in low flow situations (0.6 gpm).

    Thoughts of what I might need/want to ask plumber to do?
     
  2. Bannerman

    Bannerman Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2014
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    If no resin was observed in the bathtub within 25+ minutes of flow, then it is likely that no resin was lost. Now with the flow direction corrected, open that bathtub faucet fully to flush out the lines in case there was some resin within the line that didn't make it to the tub.

    Unless the flow rate exceeded the DLFC flow rate, then the resin will not normally become lifted high enough to leave the tank but air within the resin when new will often result in the resin being lifted higher until the air is driven out. If the softener is equipped with an upper basket, then that may have prevented resin from being flushed out from the softener even if the resin was lifted too high.

    The usual procedure for initializing a new softener is to manually advance the controller to Backwash while the main plumbing valve remains closed, then open the main valve only slightly to allow the resin tank to slowly fill with water which will push air out to the drain without lifting the resin. Once no air is further observed in the drain discharge, then the control valve is returned to the Service position and the main feed valve fully opened so soft water will flow to faucets throughout the home.
     
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  4. ShouldaCalledAPlumber

    ShouldaCalledAPlumber New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2020
    Location:
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Thank you, @Bannerman !

    Maybe there was resin, and I didn't realize it...?

    The water flowing into the bathtub was deep orange hue for first 3-4 minutes, then less so over next 2-3 minutes, then clear by 6-7 minutes. Next 20 minutes was totally clear. I didn't have any concern with orange hue, as the manual I received said to expect the water to be 'discolored' for first 40-50 gallons.

    The resin is: ResinTech CG-10 10%, which has a screen size distribution of 16 to 50 U.S. Mesh. https://www.resintech.com/products/sac-resins/cg10 U.S. Mesh size doesn't mean anything to me, so I'm not really sure how large or small the resin beads are.

    There was about 3-4 tablespoons in total of what felt like very fine sand on bottom of tub when done. I assumed this was dust or debris coming off the resin, not the resin itself, but now that I'm thinking about it, I don't really know what resin looks like, so maybe it was resin?

    The tub drain was open the whole time, so more of this fine-sand like material may very well have gone down the drain. What I noticed was off to the left and right side of the drain, in eddy pools. I was watching for 1st 10 minutes, and I did not notice anything larger than this very fine "sand".

    After the flow direction was corrected I did open that bathtub faucet fully to flush out the lines, and did not notice any resin. I did notice a slight discoloration (not near as intense as 1st time), which turned to clear in about 2 minutes. I let it run for another 20 minutes, with no change. No other water lines or devices in home were active during improper setup flush, or during flush after correction.

    The proper initialization procedure you described was not followed at time of initial (incorrect) set up. Plumber fully opened the bypass valve, and let 'er rip. After he corrected flow direction the initialization sequence you described was followed, however, by then the tank was already filled with water from the 1st go-around, so not sure it really mattered.

    Update: I just found this chart: https://www.sigmaaldrich.com/chemis...chnical-library/particle-size-conversion.html Now I see that 16-50 mesh is tiny! The visual I had created in my mind was that resin beads were around the size of a BB. I'm starting to think what I saw in the tub may have been resin?
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2020
  5. Bannerman

    Bannerman Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2014
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Regular resin granules do appear similar to sand.

    During manufacturing, some resin granules are often broken or not fully formed and some resin dust will also be common. During the first few initial regeneration cycles, those unusually small particles (fines) will be rinsed out of the tank to drain. Due to the manner your softener was initialized, it is not unusual to observe some resin particles were flushed out, even when there is an upper basket installed since the 'fines' will be small enough to pass through the slots in an upper basket.

    I anticipate there is nothing to be concerned about. If your resin tank is not equipped with an outer jacket or a painted surface, the resin height may often be observed through the tank walls by shinning a lamp behind the tank while the room is dark. The resin will typically fill 2/3 of the tank height.
     
  6. ShouldaCalledAPlumber

    ShouldaCalledAPlumber New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2020
    Location:
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Thank you once again, @Bannerman - you've been so helpful. I'll try the shining light test this evening Have a great weekend!
     
  7. ShouldaCalledAPlumber

    ShouldaCalledAPlumber New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2020
    Location:
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Tank is colored almond, and I'm unable to see light through it, so was unable to do visual inspection of resin level.

    Everything seems to be fine (other than water meter not picking up 0.6 GPM flow). I am not noticing any decrease in flow at faucets, etc., so maybe all is well? I'll update this post if there are any substantive changes.

    Thank you again, @Bannerman and @Reach4 !
     
  8. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    Try a brighter flashlight at 2AM if you cannot block light from outside. Maybe even try a bright laser pointer that you quickly move up and down the far side of the tank. The unpainted tanks are almond color.
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2020
  9. ShouldaCalledAPlumber

    ShouldaCalledAPlumber New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2020
    Location:
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    Thanks, @Reach4, I have a laser pointer, so will try that!
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2020
  10. ShouldaCalledAPlumber

    ShouldaCalledAPlumber New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2020
    Location:
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Thanks again, @Reach4!

    By covering up garage windows and using a more powerful flashlight I was able to see level of resin, which I marked with green tape. (Top edge of tape is level of resin.)

    Tank is 12”x 52”
    Original resin fill: 2.0 cubic ft

    Floor to top of the resin bed: 32”
    Top of resin bed to where tank curves inward: 16”
    From inward curve to top of neck: Approx 4”

    Fleck 5600SXT 12x52 with resin level marked.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2020
  11. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    Close enough. compensating for the dome a the top is good, but you would also compensate for a similar dome hidden by that black base. So you might have lost a little. Do you have gravel? Adding 14 or 15 lb of suitable gravel would be a good idea if you are in there for some reason, but probably not worth pursuing. Maybe lack of gravel explains some or all of it. If you add gravel up top, it will self-sort to the bottom during the first backwash.

    I could re-compute numbers assuming 1.9 cuft of resin, if you like.

    There have been people who had their inputs reversed for years, and the softener appeared to be working fine.
     
  12. ShouldaCalledAPlumber

    ShouldaCalledAPlumber New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2020
    Location:
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    That would be awesome!

    Thank you!

    Also, I'll ask the distributor if it has gravel added.

    What kind of gravel is "suitable"?
     
  13. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    System info (not programmed)

    salt lb/cuft = 7.89; A choice ( efficiency vs capacity)
    BLFC = 0.5 ; Brine Refill rate GPM
    cubic ft resin = 1.9 ; ft3 resin = (nominal grains)/32,000
    Compensated hardness = 20 ; 18+2 high hardness compensation
    People = 3.25 ; gallons affects only reserve calc
    Estimated gal/day = 195 ; 60 gal per person typical calc
    Estimated days/regen = 11.69 ; Computed days including reserve

    Fleck 5600SXT Settings: (winter)
    DF = Gal ; Units
    VT = dF1b ; Downflw/, Single Backwash, black cam
    CT = Fd ; Meter Delayed regen trigger
    NT = 1 ; Number of tanks
    C = 45.3 ; capacity in 1000 grains
    H = 20 ; Hardness--18+2 high hardness compensation
    RS = rc ; rc says use gallons vs percent
    RC = 195 ; Reserve capacity gallons Change SUMMER/WINTER
    DO = 28 ; 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 = t0.7 ; https://terrylove.com/forums/index.php?attachments/img_fleck5600sxt_flow-png.31592/

    Revised based on numbers from https://terrylove.com/forums/index.php?threads/help-for-programming-fleck-5810.82673/#post-595983
    BLFC = 0.5
    cubic ft resin = 1.9
    Alternative C and BF pairs:
    lb/cuft ; C= ; BF=
    4.737 ; 35.2 ; 6
    5.526 ; 38.3 ; 7
    6.316 ; 40.9 ; 8
    7.105 ; 43.3 ; 9
    7.895 ; 45.3 ; 10 ; Used above
    8.684 ; 47.1 ; 11
    9.474 ; 48.7 ; 12
    10.263 ; 50.2 ; 13
    11.053 ; 51.5 ; 14

    Regarding gravel, search for "gravel" in this forum.
     
  14. ShouldaCalledAPlumber

    ShouldaCalledAPlumber New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2020
    Location:
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Thank you, @Reach4 - I surely didn't expect the level of detail and expenditure of time you have given me over the last few days.

    Amazing!

    Thank you again!
     
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