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Thread: softener introducting air into my water lines

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    DIY Junior Member hunch1784's Avatar
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    Default softener introducting air into my water lines

    I have a GE whole house water softener and every morning my water lines would have alot of air in them. I was suspicious that it was the softener allow air to get in my lines because there are no leaks. I bypassed the softener via the bypass valve on the unit itself and I have not had any air in my lines since I did this 4 days ago. Does anyone have any suggestions on what my problem could be and how I could fix it?

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Make sure that the brine line nut is tight and that there are no leaks in the 3/8 tubing going into the brine tank.

    The brine line would be the only place that air could get into the system. The other thing that could be going on is the float assembly is not closing when there is no more water.. make sure that the brine pick up end is clear and seating correctly.

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    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    If it was possible that air sucked in through the brine line could get out into the plumbing, and I don't think it can with a downflow softener, then this softener is up flow or would have to have regenerated every night to have air in the lines every morning. I doubt the softener is regenerating every night but a small GE might. Do they make an up flow?

    I think it may be the hot side that has air in it and it may be coming from the water heater. Why bypassing the softener would prevent the air is beyond me.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
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    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

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    To check and see if the unit is causing the problem, advance the unit into a brine draw cycle. Slowly pull the float assembly out of the brine tank. On the bottom of the styrofoam float is a rubber that seals when the water is drawn out. So with the unit in a draw and you pull the float out, the rod that the float rides on should not move. If you are able to move it up and down, the seal is bad allowing air to be drawn into the unit.

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Very good lay out of how to... sorry that I was not more clear, but you have made it clearer..

    What one puts in , one gets out.

    ie iron free water into water heater, iron free water out of water heater.. if there is iron in the hot water but not the cold then the water heater is in need of replacement.

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    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skip Wolverton View Post
    To check and see if the unit is causing the problem, advance the unit into a brine draw cycle. Slowly pull the float assembly out of the brine tank. On the bottom of the styrofoam float is a rubber that seals when the water is drawn out. So with the unit in a draw and you pull the float out, the rod that the float rides on should not move. If you are able to move it up and down, the seal is bad allowing air to be drawn into the unit.
    I use semi transparent (opaque) brine line so you can see air bubbles in it just by looking at the brine line during slow rinse/brine draw.

    But if air is sucked into the resin tank during slow rinse/brine draw (the brining cycle position) that goes through the tank and out the drain line with the slow rinse water, how does the air get trapped and out into the house plumbing?

    If there is a private well, it's more likely that the air is from the pump sucking air or the water level in the well falling to the inlet to the pump.
    Last edited by Gary Slusser; 02-13-2010 at 12:45 PM.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

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    DIY Senior Member Bob999's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    But if air is sucked into the resin tank during slow rinse/brine draw (the brining cycle position) that goes through the tank and out the drain line with the slow rinse water, how does the air get trapped and out into the house plumbing?
    With a downflow softener the slow rinse/brining flow is down through the tank and back up through the distribution tube to the head and out the drain. It is easy for air to be trapped in the top of the tank if it is introduced during the slow rinse/brine cycle. If there is a lot of air in the tank then a high service flow can carry the air down through the bed and out with the supply water.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    I use semi transparent (opaque) brine line so you can see air bubbles in it just by looking at the brine line during slow rinse/brine draw.

    But if air is sucked into the resin tank during slow rinse/brine draw (the brining cycle position) that goes through the tank and out the drain line with the slow rinse water, how does the air get trapped and out into the house plumbing?

    If there is a private well, it's more likely that the air is from the pump sucking air or the water level in the well falling to the inlet to the pump.
    Your wrong about the air not staying in the tank. I recently went on a svc call where the valve was in a brine cycle for over 2 days. It took me 3 complete revolutions of the valve to get all the air out. And changing the line would be ok but, you are only isolating the valve and not the brine line. Whenever possible, I keep everything the same. I just pull the float assembly out of the brine tank to get it to "check" and see if it is sucking air.

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