Low water pressure after several minutes

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Pat5600

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Greetings
Having a problem with water pressure for the last 6-8 months. In the shower after about 2-3 minutes the pressure drops about half pressure. Other faucets, hose bibs etc also lose pressure. I can use an outside garden hose and it will gradually lose pressure, turn it off for 30 seconds, pressure is back but will only last a short while. Bypass theSoftener, pressure remains solid.

System 5600SXT Down flow, been in service since Oct 23 2010. I do all the "maintenance" etc. Brine tank 9x48, original resin. I have done a couple of regens in a row with only short success keeping the water flowing at normal speed. I also tried RESCARE. Have removed all the salt from the brine tank when it was low, cleaned everything out and refreshed it with new salt about every 3 years. Water level in the brine tank averages about 6". I have a sediment filter ahead of the input to the system. This is city water and they report hardness as 3-15 as they draw from multiple wells. My current settings are below. I am thinking it is time to replace the resin????

Tx Pat..

DF - Display format Gallon
VT - Valve Type df1b
CT - Control Type Fd
NT - # Tanks 1
C - Unit Capacity 24
H - Hardness 15
RS - Reserve RC
RC - Reserve Capacity 250
DO - Day override 8
RT - Regen Time 2:15 AM
BW - Baskwash 10
BD - Brine Draw 60
RR - Rapid Rinse 10
BF - Brine Fill 4
FM - Flow Meter Type P0.7
 
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Reach4

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What does the pressure gauge at the pressure switch show during these low-pressure episodes?
 

Bannerman

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Classic symptom when the resin is chlorine damaged and requires replacement.

BTW, to regenerate 24,000 grains capacity requires 8 lbs salt each regeneration cycle. Assuming your softener is equipped with a 0.5 GPM BLFC (brine line flow control), the current 4-minutes Brine Fill setting will result in only 2 gallons water to enter the brine tank each cycle. 2-gallons will dissolve only 6 lbs salt, not 8 lbs.
 
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Pat5600

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What does the pressure gauge at the pressure switch show during these low-pressure episodes?
At the moment, I do not have a pressure switch/gauge. Its city water. I have a guage, but have not installed it yet.
 

Pat5600

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Classic symptom when the resin is chlorine damaged and requires replacement.

BTW, to regenerate 24,000 grains capacity requires 8 lbs salt each regeneration cycle. Assuming your softener is equipped with a 0.5 GPM BLFC (brine line flow control), the current 4-minutes Brine Fill setting will result in only 2 gallons water to enter the brine tank each cycle. 2-gallons will dissolve only 6 lbs salt, not 8 lbs.
Tx for that answer. Yes BLFC is 0.5 (1.5 gallons). My understanding now, I should change BF = 6. This should give me 9 lbs salt??
Tx, Pat
 

Reach4

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You probably should get new 10% crosslinked resin, but the pressure gauge could be useful in knowing if the softener was your source of pressure drop. You could also compare flow with the softener in bypass.

A garden hose thread pressure gauge could go on an outside hose spigot to measure pressure before the softener, and on the water heater drain or laundry tap for after the softener.

Here is programming I would prefer:
Adjust 120 number if appropriate. Maybe your 250 is appropriate. Usually 60 gallons per person, but you may have better data. Remember that your yard watering and pool filling does not go thru the softener.

System info (not programmed)
salt lb/cuft = 7.5 ; A choice ( efficiency vs capacity)
BLFC = 0.5 ; Brine Refill rate GPM
cubic ft resin = 1 ; ft3 resin = (nominal grains)/32,000
Compensated hardness = 15 ; including any compensation
People = 2 ; gallons affects reserve calc
Estimated gal/day = 120 ; 60 gal per person typical calc
Estimated days/regen = 13.33 ; 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 = 23.0 ; capacity in 1000 grains
H = 15 ; Hardness-- compensate if needed
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 = 5 ; Brine fill minutes
FM = P0.7 ; https://terrylove.com/forums/index.php?attachments/img_fleck5600sxt_flow-png.31592/

Check the link above and confirm you have a paddlewheel.
 

Bannerman

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You had already confirmed the softener is the source of the flow restriction as you said: "Bypass theSoftener, pressure remains solid."

Yes, to regenerate 24,000 grains capacity, the Brine Fill setting will need to be increased to 6-minutes. While 9 lbs salt will be greater than required, the 5600SXT controller only provides the BF setting to be whole numbers and 5-minutes BF (=7.5 lbs) will be insufficient. Many if not most 1 ft2 softeners equipped with a 0.5 BLFC are programmed to regenerate 24K grains capacity using 9 lbs salt each cycle.

The method to allow tighter control over salt usage will be to replace the existing 0.5 GPM BLFC flow restrictor with a lower flowing BLFC. For example, using a 0.25 GPM restrictor will allow the BF setting to be changed to 11-minutes which will result in 2.75 gallons entering the brine tank which will then dissolve only 8.25 lbs salt.
 

Pat5600

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You had already confirmed the softener is the source of the flow restriction as you said: "Bypass theSoftener, pressure remains solid."

Yes, to regenerate 24,000 grains capacity, the Brine Fill setting will need to be increased to 6-minutes. While 9 lbs salt will be greater than required, the 5600SXT controller only provides the BF setting to be whole numbers and 5-minutes BF (=7.5 lbs) will be insufficient. Many if not most 1 ft2 softeners equipped with a 0.5 BLFC are programmed to regenerate 24K grains capacity using 9 lbs salt each cycle.

The method to allow tighter control over salt usage will be to replace the existing 0.5 GPM BLFC flow restrictor with a lower flowing BLFC. For example, using a 0.25 GPM restrictor will allow the BF setting to be changed to 11-minutes which will result in 2.75 gallons entering the brine tank which will then dissolve only 8.25 lbs salt.
Tx for that reply. I ended up making a spreadsheet to change the BLFC variables to see the effect and I too came up with 2.75 gallons (8.25 lbs salt) :O). Thinking that 0.75 lbs of salt saving, to me might not be worth the effort??? Pat
 

Pat5600

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You probably should get new 10% crosslinked resin, but the pressure gauge could be useful in knowing if the softener was your source of pressure drop. You could also compare flow with the softener in bypass.

A garden hose thread pressure gauge could go on an outside hose spigot to measure pressure before the softener, and on the water heater drain or laundry tap for after the softener.

Here is programming I would prefer:
Adjust 120 number if appropriate. Maybe your 250 is appropriate. Usually 60 gallons per person, but you may have better data. Remember that your yard watering and pool filling does not go thru the softener.

System info (not programmed)
salt lb/cuft = 7.5 ; A choice ( efficiency vs capacity)
BLFC = 0.5 ; Brine Refill rate GPM
cubic ft resin = 1 ; ft3 resin = (nominal grains)/32,000
Compensated hardness = 15 ; including any compensation
People = 2 ; gallons affects reserve calc
Estimated gal/day = 120 ; 60 gal per person typical calc
Estimated days/regen = 13.33 ; 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 = 23.0 ; capacity in 1000 grains
H = 15 ; Hardness-- compensate if needed
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 = 5 ; Brine fill minutes
FM = P0.7 ; https://terrylove.com/forums/index.php?attachments/img_fleck5600sxt_flow-png.31592/

Check the link above and confirm you have a paddlewheel.
Tx for that reply. YES confirming that I do have the paddlewheel. You siad "Remember that your yard watering and pool filling does not go thru the softener." This is an area that I can't seem to get my head around" Once the water exits the WS, it feeds the whole house including 2 of the 3 outside bibs. The one outside bib that is not effected is close to the split (T) between the incoming main line and the back flow device. I am thinking that bib is run from the main feed there?, while the other two are feed from the lines which eventually come from the WS. This is why those 2 bibs also lose pressure same as the shower's faucets.??? . Lawn watering come thru the backflow device and obviously not the WS. If I had a basement, I would re-plumb the bibs but my house is on a cement pad. Pat
 
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Reach4

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So a garden hose thread pressure gauge could still be handy, but if your pressure problem goes away when the softener is bypassed, yes, put in new 10% crosslinked resin with no further troubleshooting. Also get the funnel.

So bypass the softener while you are working, and you will still have water for the house. When I did mine, I marked the location of base of my tank so I could more easily align it back up with the bypass valve.
 

Pat5600

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Last tuesday, decided to change out the resin. Let the salt get near the bottom so as to make movement easier. Once the resin tank was disconnected and the controller removed, moved it to the end of my driveway and placed a giant beach towel under the opening to catch the old resin. This took about an hour when the resin tank was washed out and clean again. Added 1 cu. ft of new resin 1 cup at a time. Old resin placed in plastic lawn bags and "donated" it to city garbage truck the same day. Had a few leaks after pressurizing the tank, quickly fixed by tightning. Water ran foamy for about 1/2 hour and cleared up. Ran a regen and water is soft, tastes ok. Ran my garden hose for 15 minutes, no loss of pressure. Last week, tested the incomming city water pressure with a new gauge and it read~ 85 psi. Thanks for all of you that helped me clear the problem!!
 
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Reach4

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Glad it worked out.

Usually people don't run garden hose water thru the softener.

How was the old resin compared to new? Soft and mushy, or small hard round balls like the new stuff?
 

Pat5600

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Thanks. The garden hose that was used was connected to the interior plumbing. [A dumb pluming job by builder mentioned in post #1, 9]. Yes the old resin might be described a well cooked "cheese grits" New was like course sand??
 
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