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Thread: Northstar water softener

  1. #16
    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Get a test of the water , hardness and iron...
    That is an older meter... but the valve is a 5600 metered unit... good long lasting..
    Maybe a rebuild kit or trade with some one that has a rebuilt valve body with control on top with the meter..
    While the media tank is out of the brine tank, get what is called a brine well and replace that thin thing that they are calling a brine well on the inside of the brine tank.
    Put a brine float assembly in it.. much better water flow in to and out of the brine tank..
    You should also replace the drain line, looks to be a kink in
    So when this all starts to go down after you have all the items on the list ... the three gate valves.. the two that are in line with the softener will get closed and the middle one opened and you will still have water.. unscrew the two screws one on either side of the meter, brass yoke assembly.. once those are lose you will be able to pull the whole unit away from the pipe and yoke. The valve unhooked from the brine line and drain line and unpluged will unscrew off the top of the media tank, the tan tank in the middle of the salt..

    With me so far?

    Step at a time....

  2. #17
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob999 View Post
    Some additional information about the Fleck 7000SXT valve is available here:

    http://www.pentairwatertreatment.com...et%2042802.pdf

    In my opinion it has some programming features that are superior to the Clack valve. The comment above about water inefficiency with variable brining is simply wrong. It demonstrates the poster is not up to date on his information. The correct information is that the Fleck valve has excellent water efficiency--equal to or superior to the Clack valve. Variable brining is not available on the Fleck 7000 valve as shown in the link posted above.
    What programming features do you consider as superior Bob?

    I assume it's due to the dealer or customer having to set the length of minutes for each of the 5 cycle positions of a regeneration individually.

    Why do you see that as a benefit when compared to the Clack WS-1 CS where a pre programed number does it in one step as compared to 5 steps in the 7000? That P number allows the selection of the same number of minutes for the cycle positions to the same settings you would want in a 7000 or other Fleck valves.

    And why do you think Fleck got rid of variable bring with the SXT timer if not due to excessive water use caused by more frequent regenerations when compared to the same softener without the variable brining feature? You sound as if you don't know how variable brining works Bob, how about explaining it to us and showing how I'm wrong. Or have you misunderstood "water efficiency"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob999 View Post
    Of course if you don't like electronic control heads the Fleck 7000 is not for you. If you prefer an electromechanical valve I recommend the Fleck 5600 or the Fleck 2510.
    We use computers in cars and other vehicles, boats, toasters, toaster ovens, microwave ovens, stove tops and other cook tops and stoves, refrigerators, washing machines, tractors, ACs, furnaces, dish washers, coffee pots and ice tea makers, ice makers, kids games and toys, computers, tools, etc. etc. etc. without problems. So anyone that doesn't like electronics on softeners either is uninformed or has an agenda against someone that promotes an electronic control valve. Or they sell water powered Kinetico equipment.

    BTW, if you want to compare 1.25" controls, compare the 7000 to the Clack WS-1.25.
    Last edited by Gary Slusser; 03-26-2010 at 01:52 AM.
    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.

  3. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    What programming features do you consider as superior Bob?

    I assume it's due to the dealer or customer having to set the length of minutes for each of the 5 cycle positions of a regeneration individually.

    Why do you see that as a benefit when compared to the Clack WS-1 CS where a pre programed number does it in one step as compared to 5 steps in the 7000? That P number allows the selection of the same number of minutes for the cycle positions to the same settings you would want in a 7000 or other Fleck valves.

    And why do you think Fleck got rid of variable bring with the SXT timer if not due to excessive water use caused by more frequent regenerations when compared to the same softener without the variable brining feature? You sound as if you don't know how variable brining works Bob, how about explaining it to us and showing how I'm wrong. Or have you misunderstood "water efficiency"?


    We use computers in cars and other vehicles, boats, toasters, toaster ovens, microwave ovens, stove tops and other cook tops and stoves, refrigerators, washing machines, tractors, ACs, furnaces, dish washers, coffee pots and ice tea makers, ice makers, kids games and toys, computers, tools, etc. etc. etc. without problems. So anyone that doesn't like electronics on softeners either is uninformed or has an agenda against someone that promotes an electronic control valve. Or they sell water powered Kinetico equipment.

    BTW, if you want to compare 1.25" controls, compare the 7000 to the Clack WS-1.25.
    IMO, this has nothing to do with the OP comments. Find another forum. You are talking over the OP head.

  4. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    We use computers in cars and other vehicles, boats, toasters, toaster ovens, microwave ovens, stove tops and other cook tops and stoves, refrigerators, washing machines, tractors, ACs, furnaces, dish washers, coffee pots and ice tea makers, ice makers, kids games and toys, computers, tools, etc. etc. etc. without problems. So anyone that doesn't like electronics on softeners either is uninformed or has an agenda against someone that promotes an electronic control valve. Or they sell water powered Kinetico equipment.

    BTW, if you want to compare 1.25" controls, compare the 7000 to the Clack WS-1.25.
    And people get tried of trying to program them. The vast majority of people do not know how to fix their electronic equipment. That means they are forced to hire someone to fix them. Just because a lot of things have electronics does not mean they are any better. Get over the fact that I do not like electronics.

  5. #20
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skip Wolverton View Post
    IMO, this has nothing to do with the OP comments. Find another forum. You are talking over the OP head.
    Obviously that's because your mechanical metered 5600 does not allow you to change the length of time the various cycle positions run for and you have no experience with that part of programming a control valve.

    BTW, the OP's North Star, it is an electronic control valve and very possibly has a dealer side of the programming where these minutes are programmed, so IMO this is on topic when selecting what brand of softener or control valve to choose.
    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.

  6. #21
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skip Wolverton View Post
    And people get tried of trying to program them. The vast majority of people do not know how to fix their electronic equipment. That means they are forced to hire someone to fix them. Just because a lot of things have electronics does not mean they are any better. Get over the fact that I do not like electronics.
    They aren't tired of programming their Clack or other electronic control valves because they are DIYers AND they only have to do it once and it is as easy as heating a cup of coffee in their microwave; literally.

    To fix an electronic control valve you replace the circuit board in a Clack but in a Fleck or Autotrol, IIRC you must replace the SE or SXT timer. To replace a Clack circuit board takes about a minute and there are no tools required; just two hands with at least one finger per hand..
    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.

  7. #22
    DIY Senior Member Bob999's Avatar
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    A warning to readers of this thread--when the poster above puts IIRC in a statement it means he doesn't really know what he is talking about and if you call him on it he will say "but I said IIRC" --which he says means If I Remember Correctly. So when he puts that in a post you should not believe what he posts.

  8. #23
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    To set a softener up, you can't guess on what your hardness is, you need to know. If this is public water and not a well, you can often get that from the supplier, but it may be a range. It is better to test it to compare their report with yours. It will verify that yours is between the max/min. If you don't want to test yours, you could use the max they list, but may be wasting salt.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  9. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    What programming features do you consider as superior Bob?

    I assume it's due to the dealer or customer having to set the length of minutes for each of the 5 cycle positions of a regeneration individually.

    Why do you see that as a benefit when compared to the Clack WS-1 CS where a pre programed number does it in one step as compared to 5 steps in the 7000? That P number allows the selection of the same number of minutes for the cycle positions to the same settings you would want in a 7000 or other Fleck valves.

    And why do you think Fleck got rid of variable bring with the SXT timer if not due to excessive water use caused by more frequent regenerations when compared to the same softener without the variable brining feature? You sound as if you don't know how variable brining works Bob, how about explaining it to us and showing how I'm wrong. Or have you misunderstood "water efficiency"?


    We use computers in cars and other vehicles, boats, toasters, toaster ovens, microwave ovens, stove tops and other cook tops and stoves, refrigerators, washing machines, tractors, ACs, furnaces, dish washers, coffee pots and ice tea makers, ice makers, kids games and toys, computers, tools, etc. etc. etc. without problems. So anyone that doesn't like electronics on softeners either is uninformed or has an agenda against someone that promotes an electronic control valve. Or they sell water powered Kinetico equipment.

    BTW, if you want to compare 1.25" controls, compare the 7000 to the Clack WS-1.25.
    This is nothing more than bashing. Just because you don't like what a poster says, you resort to bashing the equipment they recommend. This is what I meant when I said, "Find another forum". And you don't know what I know about programming electronic control valves. Just another way to bash those you don't agree with you. That just shows what type person you are.

  10. #25
    Computer systems technologist for Geologists & Petroleum Engineers MiddleAgeSoftie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akpsdvan View Post
    Get a test of the water , hardness and iron...
    That is an older meter... but the valve is a 5600 metered unit... good long lasting..
    Maybe a rebuild kit or trade with some one that has a rebuilt valve body with control on top with the meter..
    While the media tank is out of the brine tank, get what is called a brine well and replace that thin thing that they are calling a brine well on the inside of the brine tank.
    Put a brine float assembly in it.. much better water flow in to and out of the brine tank..
    You should also replace the drain line, looks to be a kink in
    So when this all starts to go down after you have all the items on the list ... the three gate valves.. the two that are in line with the softener will get closed and the middle one opened and you will still have water.. unscrew the two screws one on either side of the meter, brass yoke assembly.. once those are lose you will be able to pull the whole unit away from the pipe and yoke. The valve unhooked from the brine line and drain line and unpluged will unscrew off the top of the media tank, the tan tank in the middle of the salt..

    With me so far?

    Step at a time....
    Here's a municiple website http://www.calgary.ca/portal/server....rdness+FAQ.htm with information regarding water hardness in Calgary. Is that good enough? Where would I go to get a water test?

    I'm a little unclear about which parts are which.

    Is the valve the small part with the water in and out pipes connected to them (or is this small part with the pipes connected to it the "...meter..." you mention further on)? Is that the part you're referring to as a "...5600 metered unit..."? Or is the "...5600 metered unit..." the whole thing - the part connected to the water supply AND the part with the gears.

    As you'll observe from my questions I really don't know anything about water softeners... However, I'm willing to learn. I've already repaired dysfunctional solar hot water and HRV systems that were in the house when I purchased it.

    Where am I likely to find one of these rebuilt units or a new one for that matter like the Clack WS-1 CS that Gary mentions or the Fleck 5600 that Skip mentions or the Fleck 7000 that Bob referes to?

    Is the Media tank that dome topped cylinder inside the unit? Is the brine well that thing on the right side of the inside of the unit? Again, where am I likely to find a brine well? What is a Brine float assembly, and again, where would I find it? Would it replace the brine well that you mentioned that I should replace?

    You're right there is a kind in that hose. It looks like a piece of garden hose which has been put on there it's quite stiff.

    Ok, after repeatedly reading what you wrote, and running down to my water softener a couple of times I think I'm with you. I'm pretty sure I can do this provideing I can find the supplies. Are these the sorts of things I can find at a place like Rona or Home Depot?

  11. #26
    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MiddleAgeSoftie View Post
    Here's a municiple website http://www.calgary.ca/portal/server....rdness+FAQ.htm with information regarding water hardness in Calgary. Is that good enough? Where would I go to get a water test?
    That is great... now if you are in the half that gets the Bearspaw that will give you one setting, if you are in the other then you will have another setting, either way those numbers will give us the total hardness that we will need to set the meter for the unit that you have.
    Quote Originally Posted by MiddleAgeSoftie View Post
    I'm a little unclear about which parts are which.

    Is the valve the small part with the water in and out pipes connected to them (or is this small part with the pipes connected to it the "...meter..." you mention further on)? Is that the part you're referring to as a "...5600 metered unit..."? Or is the "...5600 metered unit..." the whole thing - the part connected to the water supply AND the part with the gears.

    As you'll observe from my questions I really don't know anything about water softeners... However, I'm willing to learn. I've already repaired dysfunctional solar hot water and HRV systems that were in the house when I purchased it.
    The black plastic is what is the 5600 with meter that I am talking about... the copper has the colored red gate valve handles.. The 5600 is made up of 2 main parts the valve body with its control and then there is the meter body with its cap or dome.
    here is a link to the manual for what you have
    http://www.pentairwatertreatment.com...al%2040106.pdf

    Quote Originally Posted by MiddleAgeSoftie View Post
    Where am I likely to find one of these rebuilt units or a new one for that matter like the Clack WS-1 CS that Gary mentions or the Fleck 5600 that Skip mentions or the Fleck 7000 that Bob referes to?

    Is the Media tank that dome topped cylinder inside the unit? Is the brine well that thing on the right side of the inside of the unit? Again, where am I likely to find a brine well? What is a Brine float assembly, and again, where would I find it? Would it replace the brine well that you mentioned that I should replace?
    There are dealers on the net that have new 5600, some might have a rebuilt 5600, I take in some from time to time and rebuild them to either trade out or sell...
    Media tank is what you have identified as the tank.. and you have identified the brine well... brine wells are the tubes that hold the salt away from the item used to suck the brine water out of the brine tank, brine safety floats have the suck tube and a float assembly like in the back tank of the toilet.
    You have it right about me saying to replace that which you have with a new tube and full brine float safety float assembly.

    Quote Originally Posted by MiddleAgeSoftie View Post
    You're right there is a kind in that hose. It looks like a piece of garden hose which has been put on there it's quite stiff.
    The deal with the drain line is that it can not have any kinks in it for the system to work correctly .. so either get the kink out or replace with a new line that is the same size as the drain barbed fitting..
    Quote Originally Posted by MiddleAgeSoftie View Post
    Ok, after repeatedly reading what you wrote, and running down to my water softener a couple of times I think I'm with you. I'm pretty sure I can do this provideing I can find the supplies. Are these the sorts of things I can find at a place like Rona or Home Depot?

    The media that you will need , from looking at the photo the media tank is either 8x35 or 10x35 if it is the smaller then .75 cubic, the larger 1.0 cubic.. either way that too is going to be found on the web at either a web dealer or auction site..

    You are learning quic
    k..
    Last edited by Akpsdvan; 03-26-2010 at 07:30 PM. Reason: Cleaning

  12. #27
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob999 View Post
    A warning to readers of this thread--when the poster above puts IIRC in a statement it means he doesn't really know what he is talking about and if you call him on it he will say "but I said IIRC" --which he says means If I Remember Correctly. So when he puts that in a post you should not believe what he posts.
    Here is what I said: To fix an electronic control valve you replace the circuit board in a Clack but in a Fleck or Autotrol, IIRC you must replace the SE or SXT timer.

    I just looked up Fleck SXT parts and I found that only the 7000 has a replacement circuit board. The rest you replace the whole timer as I thought. So it appears you're wrong Bob.

    I also searched softenerparts.com but they do not have any electronics parts for any Fleck controls on the web site.

    From the parts list in the back of the 5600 SXT service manual.

    http://www.pentairwatertreatment.com...al%2042683.pdf

    Front Panels
    61672-0201 ..... 5600SXT Front Panel Assembly,
    ......................... Square, Black
    61673-0201 ..... 5600SXT Front Panel Assembly,
    ......................... Curved, Black

    From the diagram page in the same manual.
    26A ................. 1 .......................61672-0201 ................Front Panel Assy, 56SXT, Square
    26B ................. 1 .......................61673-0201 ................Front Panel Assy, 56SXT, Curved

    So now I'll ask you again.... What programming features (of the 7000) do you consider as superior to the Clack WS-1?

    Also, why do you think Fleck got rid of variable bring with the SXT timer if not due to excessive water use caused by more frequent regenerations when compared to the same softener without the variable brining feature?
    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.

  13. #28
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skip Wolverton View Post
    This is nothing more than bashing. Just because you don't like what a poster says, you resort to bashing the equipment they recommend. This is what I meant when I said, "Find another forum". And you don't know what I know about programming electronic control valves. Just another way to bash those you don't agree with you. That just shows what type person you are.
    There is nothing untrue in what I said so what do you see as bashing by me replying to what someone said to me; here's what I replied with; What programming features do you consider as superior Bob? and then this; And why do you think Fleck got rid of variable bring with the SXT timer if not due to excessive water use caused by more frequent regenerations when compared to the same softener without the variable brining feature?
    Last edited by Gary Slusser; 03-27-2010 at 10:10 AM.
    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.

  14. #29
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MiddleAgeSoftie View Post
    Here's a municiple website http://www.calgary.ca/portal/server....rdness+FAQ.htm with information regarding water hardness in Calgary. Is that good enough? Where would I go to get a water test?
    You have to size and program using the highest hardness in their system so when they send your house harder water than a test today may show at your house, the softener can remove the additional hardness. If you don't do that, additional capacity is used but won't be regenerated by the salt dose and within days or a week you'll get hard water through the softener.
    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.

  15. #30
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Middleagesoftie, you should use 18 gpg to size and set up your softener.

    Also, the link has a number of errors in what they are telling people, such as: The hardness of Calgary's drinking water does vary throughout the year, so it is recommended that you set your water softener for the middle or average hardness value for your area.

    If you set a softener at the 'average hardness' of city water and the city sends you harder water which many do and fairly often, the softener won't be able to continue to remove the higher hardness for very long because the resin will remove it but the capacity used will not be regenerated with the current salt dose so you'll get hard water through the softener fairly soon.

    Then you have to do two manual regenerations at the maximum salt dose lbs for the volume of resin you have (15 lbs/cuft of regular mesh resin) and you can not use water during or between those two manual regenerations. That usually will take 8 hours and many lbs of salt.
    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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