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Thread: General Ionics IQ0820B won't draw brine

  1. #16
    DIY Junior Member bmaker's Avatar
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    Well, I bought a set of seals for a Fleck 25x0 and they are too small. The GI seals are 1 3/8" OD and 1 1/8" ID; the Flecks are 1 1/4" OD and 1" ID. The opening in the valve body after taking off the controller is 1 3/8" ID.

    So, since I had it all apart I went ahead and pulled out all the seals and spacers to inspect them and clean them up. Some of the spacers had tiny nicks on them but they were basically sound. I sanded down the rough spots with 400 emery paper. The seals were like new--soft, pliable, and clean with no imperfections at all. I put everything back together, using a "D" dry cell battery as my stuffer tool. It was a hair small but it seemed to work OK.

    I decided to replace the resin too so have to go pick that up tomorrow. Will let you know how it all turns out.

  2. #17
    DIY Junior Member bmaker's Avatar
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    Got the resin installed, put everything back together, flushed out the whole system (took about 10 minutes at about 3-4 gpm), then did a regen for good measure. Unfortunately, the brine still will not draw so I am back to the manual process of closing the bypass valve and then slowly opening it back up to get the suction to start. Frustrating! Water is nice and soft, though, with the new resin.

  3. #18
    In the Trades Tom Sawyer's Avatar
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    Have you checked all the fittings on the brine line as well as the float assembly for suction leaks?
    [B]No, plumbing ain't rocket science. Unlike rocket science, plumbing requires a license[B]

  4. #19
    DIY Junior Member bmaker's Avatar
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    Here's what I did on that. I removed the float and suction tube assembly from the sleeve in the salt tank. I then took it up to the kitchen when my wife wasn't around and dipped it into a pitcher of tap water. I sucked on the brine connection with the tube fully submerged and got a mouthful of water. I then raised the tube out of the water and the check valve in the gooseneck at the bottom of the tube did it's thing and stopped the water flow. I tried to suck real hard and could detect no leakage through the check valve, so deemed that to be OK. Then I blew into the brine connection with the float pushed all the way down (simulating a low brine level in the tank) and the air flowed freely into the pitcher. Finally, I blew into the conection with the float lifted up all the way (simulating a full brine tank) and the flow stopped. Seems like everything was working as intended.

    By the way, I never seriously thought there was a problem with the brine tube/float because it all works OK when I do the thing with the bypass valve as described above.

  5. #20
    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Awhile back there was a system that had the same problem... the reason for the challenge was found to be a plug at the base of the injector.
    So on yours check to make sure that under the injector block , there should be 2 holes .. one for the injector throat and the other for the screen... make sure that there is nothing pluging either hole or covering the hole. The lower seal should not cover the holes on the body.

  6. #21
    DIY Senior Member mialynette2003's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bmaker View Post
    Got the resin installed, put everything back together, flushed out the whole system (took about 10 minutes at about 3-4 gpm), then did a regen for good measure. Unfortunately, the brine still will not draw so I am back to the manual process of closing the bypass valve and then slowly opening it back up to get the suction to start. Frustrating! Water is nice and soft, though, with the new resin.
    Check the drain for any obstruction. If the drain line is partially stopped up it will cause the unit to fill the brine tank in a draw cycle. Once you put it on bypass, the pressure in the drain line is released and when you put it back in service, it will start to draw until the drain line fills back up. If it continues to draw, one of the seals is bad.

  7. #22
    Water systems designer, R&D ditttohead's Avatar
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    This is a difficult fix because the first part of troubleshooting a valve that has 20 years on it is to start with rebuilding the head with new seals, spacers, piston, and drop in a new throat and nozzle, a couple seals etc. Unfortunately you have a proprietary valve that does not make this an easy fix. Most of the companies will not sell you there special parts because they want to send a "technician" out to try to sell you a new unit.
    That being said, the problem you are having is not common, but has been known for many years. If it is not the seal and spacers, the injector assembly works on a venturi, for this to work, the nozzle water must not shoot perfectly through the throat. It needs to hit the sides and cause a water seal and thus create suction. This is why Fleck added the "Air Disperser" as they call it to the injector assembly years ago to most of their systems. It is a very rare occurance, and since your unit just started this, it is not likely the problem. The only reason I go there is because you say you get good suction when you cycle the bypass valve, this would disrupt the water flow through the injector likely making a good venturi affect. A very old trick (prior to the "air disperser" was to tweak the throat on the injector, or to make an imperfection on it that wold do the same thing as the air dispersor. In my 25 years, I have only had to do this maybe 10 times. I used to rebuild up to 6-8 softeners of every brand per day. In all reality, a 20 year old softener should be considered for retirment and it should be replaced with a non proprietary system so parts in the future are not an issue. Even the tank thread on your system is proprietary making a valve swap impossible. Many years ago we made an adapter to change the tank to a standard control valve thread, but that was too expensive and very prone to failures. It has since been discontinued.

  8. #23
    DIY Junior Member Joe29365's Avatar
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    Default Question about Filter Change on G.I. 0820B

    In Aug. of last year ('11) moved into a house that has a General Ionics 0820B water softener which was installed in '84. There is some type of filter that needs to be changes and I have set up an appt. to have it change by a local G.I. Service company. Their service is $212!!!!They are the same company that serviced this unit for the previous owner. The unit was working but I had not put any salt in it. When I scheduled the service, they told me it would be best to bypass the unit until it was serviced so I did so. I noticed that the water in our house now tastes bad.

    Does anyone know where this filter is that needs to be changed and how to change it? I unhooked the unit from the water supply. I think the filter that needs to be changed is inside the tank but I have no idea how to get the big valve off the top. Not sure if it unscrews off or needs to be pulled straight up and off? I'm guessing I have to get the filter from them but if I can do the work myself at least I should save some money.

  9. #24
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    I've never heard of a softener having a filter inside a resin tank. I have heard of carbon on top of resin in a resin tank. That isn't a good idea IMO but dealers do it frequently. In most cases the carbon needs replacing after a few years.
    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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