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Thread: 1950-60 era Peerless softener has quit softening

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member DetailDiva's Avatar
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    Default 1950-60 era Peerless softener has quit softening

    We have a 1950-60 era Peerless water softener. It was in our first house and we have been moving it around for 25 years now! It has always softened the water, until recently.

    Now, the water is hard and the softener does not seem to be using salt. It is regenerating on schedule, so the manual timer does not seem to be the issue.

    I've looked around a bit on the internet, and am wondering if we need to replace the resin beads. What do you think? We like to re-use items as much as possible, to reduce landfill waste, but would you recommend repairing or replacing?

    Also, in the past 13 years, we are on our 4th water heater. They spring leaks and have to be replaced. Always have lots of dark, rusty sediment in the bottom. I have suspected that the softener might be the issue, but don't know why. We have never lived in a house more than 5 years, until recently, so we don't have a lot of long-term history with the issue.

    Thanks for your input!

  2. #2
    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Any photos of the unit?

    If it is still on First Resin,, then it could very well be time to replace.

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    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DetailDiva View Post
    We have a 1950-60 era Peerless water softener. It was in our first house and we have been moving it around for 25 years now! It has always softened the water, until recently.

    Now, the water is hard and the softener does not seem to be using salt. It is regenerating on schedule, so the manual timer does not seem to be the issue.

    I've looked around a bit on the internet, and am wondering if we need to replace the resin beads. What do you think? We like to re-use items as much as possible, to reduce landfill waste, but would you recommend repairing or replacing?

    Also, in the past 13 years, we are on our 4th water heater. They spring leaks and have to be replaced. Always have lots of dark, rusty sediment in the bottom. I have suspected that the softener might be the issue, but don't know why. We have never lived in a house more than 5 years, until recently, so we don't have a lot of long-term history with the issue.

    Thanks for your input!
    Since it doesn't seem to be using salt, you need to find the cause of that and fix it and then the unit should work as it had been.

    The usual causes are; blocked injector and/or injector throat or screen. Loose brine line connections, blocked or kinked drain line. All those will allow an excess of water in the salt tank, which you haven't mentioned so that would mean a mechanical problem in the control valve. Is the time of day changing? If so then the motor is running.

    Can you put it into a manual regeneration and it finishes it on its own or not? If not then that is a mechanical problem. You won't find parts for it unless you have changed the control valve on it so you would need a new softener. I suggest a new correctly sized one with the Clack WS-1 CS version control valve.
    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.

  4. #4

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    Peerless did not make a water softener so most likely it's a Fleck, Eco or Autotrol. A pic is needed to help.

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    DIY Junior Member DetailDiva's Avatar
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    Default here's a picture

    Thanks for your comments, gentlemen. I could have sworn I posted a picture yesterday in response to the request, but I must have failed to do that. Here it is now.

    Mr. Slusser...we do not have excess water in the tank. Does your comment mean that it's the control valve if that's NOT occuring? I'm not quite following that explanation, sorry.

    I can regenerate it manually and it will finish the cycle.

    As you can see from the picture, we also have a minor leak that my husband is dealing with manually. I have contacted Peerless directly, as well as asking for ideas here. They say the leak isi from the piston/seal, which can no longer be replaced. They also speculate that the issue of not softening is in the brine valve.

    Thanks again for all your comments! When my husband gets home from his trip, I know your comments will be helpful to him. I plan to lock him in the basement until he gets it fixed.
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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    That almost looks like a Capital valve... but it looks to have a rainsoft control...........
    What did they call the valve? TM2 ? Did they have a name for the valve that you have?
    If you can start it into a cleaning cycle and it finishes,, then it may be the day triping part of the control not working right.
    If there is no water going into the brine tank at any part of the cycle, then there may be a full plug in the brine line or the brine float is stuck in up .. and not letting water into the brine tank.
    Any other photos that you might have would be more than helpful...
    I love a challenge..
    Let us see if we can get this valve running again.........
    Last edited by Akpsdvan; 03-12-2010 at 11:43 PM.

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    well, apparently Peerless did make a softener. What a beast. Anyway I suspect that due to the age of it, it would probably be more cost effective and easier to just replace the whole thing. A new Fleck or Clack unit will be a lot easier to deal with and more efficient anyway.

  8. #8

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    Disconnect the brine line from the valve. Advance the valve through the cycles slowly. Check to insure you have a brine draw and refill.

  9. #9
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DetailDiva View Post
    Mr. Slusser...we do not have excess water in the tank. Does your comment mean that it's the control valve if that's NOT occuring? I'm not quite following that explanation, sorry.

    I can regenerate it manually and it will finish the cycle.

    As you can see from the picture, we also have a minor leak that my husband is dealing with manually. I have contacted Peerless directly, as well as asking for ideas here. They say the leak isi from the piston/seal, which can no longer be replaced. They also speculate that the issue of not softening is in the brine valve.

    Thanks again for all your comments! When my husband gets home from his trip, I know your comments will be helpful to him. I plan to lock him in the basement until he gets it fixed.
    If the water level in the salt tank is normal (meaning not higher), then there is a blockage preventing water from going into the salt tank or, there is something broken on/in the control valve; like a brine valve that is not opening.

    As suggested, the float could be stuck up/closed. And there could be a metal screen filter in either end of the brine line from the salt tank to the control valve. The brine line flow control button could be blocked, that probably is in the fitting on the control valve where the brine line connects to the control valve. Or the brine valve might be blocked it of whatever moves it can not move.

    The leak may be the o-ring on the stem of the piston but I wouldn't think it has anything to do with not using salt but I don't know what type brine valve they have. And if you lock that guy in the basement... payback could be hellish; especially if he was in a hotel room for a few days, so be nice and join him so you can tell us all about it.
    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.

  10. #10
    DIY Junior Member DetailDiva's Avatar
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    Don't worry, there's a TV, his dream stereo, and a recording studio in the basement too. Sometimes I have trouble getting him up with society! : )

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