(206) 949-5683, Top Rated Plumber, Seattle
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 24

Thread: Low flow from Clack WS1 water softener

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member caldezrat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Extreme southern california
    Posts
    11

    Default Low flow from Clack WS1 water softener

    I'm having problems with my 4 year old Clack WS1 water softener. My outside garden faucets work fine but going through my softener, the flow tapers off and has very little flow. It almost stops. When I by-pass the system, my flow is fine. Also, I noticed when the system is brining, it doesn't evacuate all the brine out of the brining tank like it used to. It seems to have a restriction somewhere. Any help would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Wherever I park the motorhome.
    Posts
    6,790

    Default

    It sounds as if you're right and there is an internal blockage. No one here can tell you what is blocked up so now you get to tear the valve apart to find and fix the blockage or call a local dealer in to do it.

    The possibilities of the blockage are; the top (if you have one) and/or bottom baskets, the spacers between the piston seals or the resin.

    As to the brine draw, when you fix the main flow blockage that will probably go back to normal but, you can check the injector when you have the valve apart or before you take it apart but if the injector is blocked, that won't fix the reduced flow thru the softener problem.
    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. #3
    DIY Junior Member caldezrat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Extreme southern california
    Posts
    11

    Default

    Thank you Gary, I think I bought this system from you. This is the first time I've had to even look at my water softener since I installed it in 2004 other than putting salt in it. I'll see if I can find my Clack wrench.

  4. #4
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    3,680

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by caldezrat View Post
    I'm having problems with my 4 year old Clack WS1 water softener...
    Quote Originally Posted by caldezrat View Post
    ...I installed it in 2004...
    That would make it 8 years old, not 4. Is it on chlorinated well or town water?

  5. #5
    DIY Junior Member caldezrat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Extreme southern california
    Posts
    11

    Default

    Woops! It is 8 years old because I wrote the installation date on the side of the softener 8-14-2004. I am on city water. I just pulled the stack, injector cap, and my drain line. Everything is clear. I am currently recycling to see if it draws up the brine.

  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member caldezrat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Extreme southern california
    Posts
    11

    Default

    I just made an observation: it started to brine and I could feel the suction in the brine line. I hooked it back up. About 20 minutes into the brine cycle, I noticed the level looked like it was coming back up in salt tank. I pulled the brine line and instead of suction, I have pressure with water going into the salt tank. It's not the fill cycle yet, still brining. What's up? I can barely hold my finger against the pressure.

  7. #7
    Water systems designer, R&D ditttohead's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,707
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by caldezrat View Post
    I just made an observation: it started to brine and I could feel the suction in the brine line. I hooked it back up. About 20 minutes into the brine cycle, I noticed the level looked like it was coming back up in salt tank. I pulled the brine line and instead of suction, I have pressure with water going into the salt tank. It's not the fill cycle yet, still brining. What's up? I can barely hold my finger against the pressure.
    I am giving you a 90% odds on bad resin. This is very easy to test. Remove the valve, put a piece of pvc pipe into the tank and penetrate the resin about 10", put you thumb over the pipe and remove the pvc, dump the sample into a cup. Drain off the water and feel the resin. Squish it between your fingers. If the resin breaks easily and turns to mush, you have bad resin. Good resin should be very hard, round, and almost impossible to break by squeezing it between your fingers.

    Resin on a chlorinated supply mat only be good for a few years. Higher crosslinking will extend the length of service between re-beds. 10% crosslink resin should be installed or dechlorinate the water with a carbon tank prior to the softener.

    Hope this helps,

  8. #8
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Wherever I park the motorhome.
    Posts
    6,790

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by caldezrat View Post
    I just made an observation: it started to brine and I could feel the suction in the brine line. I hooked it back up. About 20 minutes into the brine cycle, I noticed the level looked like it was coming back up in salt tank. I pulled the brine line and instead of suction, I have pressure with water going into the salt tank. It's not the fill cycle yet, still brining. What's up? I can barely hold my finger against the pressure.
    If you bought it from me you should have a top basket and you need to look at it to make sure it isn't blocked with something.
    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.

  9. #9
    DIY Junior Member caldezrat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Extreme southern california
    Posts
    11

    Default

    I'm in the process of ordering resin today. When I get it apart I'll report what I see. Thanks!

  10. #10
    In the Trades Tom Sawyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    2,940

    Default

    Knowing that you were on city chlorinated water you should have got the unit with 10% crosslinked resin and had a carbon filter installed before the softener right from the start. Chlorinated water will destroy resin in a short period of time. I suspect your top basket is plugged with broken resin.
    [B]No, plumbing ain't rocket science. Unlike rocket science, plumbing requires a license[B]

  11. #11
    Water systems designer, R&D ditttohead's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,707
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Broken resin will not backwash out of a system when it has a top screen, the top screen will keep it in and cause a layer of tightly packed broken resin beads to form a restricting layer on the top of the resin. I know many field technicians that have removed the top screen, and then increased the backwash rate to remove the broken resin beads from the system. BTW, this works, but is only temporary and should not be done. Resin is cheap and simple to replace. Be sure to inspect the top screen, clean it, and be sure to remove all of the old resin. It does not take much bad resin to cause the symptoms you are describing. Tom is absolutely correct, you should have been sold 10% crosslink resin which will last considerably longer than 8% in a chlorinated supply, I would highly recommend a carbon tank be installed ahead of your equipment. If the chlorine is bad enough to damage resin, how damaging is it to you when you are breathing it into your lungs in a hot, steamy shower?

  12. #12
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    3,680

    Default

    My water guy tells me that top screens are more trouble than they are worth and that they scale up with iron and mineral. At one time he used to run a razor knife through the slits to clean them out. Then he started doing dentistry, removing every second slit. Now he just tosses them away.

  13. #13
    Water systems designer, R&D ditttohead's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,707
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Lol, I like the dentistry idea! top screens can be important in a few instances.

    #1 Shipping and deliveries, softeners should not be laid on their sides, a top screen eliminates the problems associated with poor delivery techniques. Resin or other medias inside the head can wreak havoc.
    #2 Better distribution, in smaller tanks this is not a major issue. Modifying the screen as your friend did is an excellent solution. Look at the commercial valves, they do not have top screens, they have a diffuser of some type to prevent channelling. something to break up the waters natural flow pattern.
    #3 extreme variances in water temperature, or hot water applications. Hot water systems require much higher backwash rates to properly lift the resin, should the heating system go out, or even the cold water in the pipe leading up to the softener, the backwash rate will blow resin right out the top. Areas that have seasonally cold water also can blow out considerable resin due to the waters higher density.

    Removing the top screen in 90+% of applications is acceptable and will not cause any problems.
    Last edited by ditttohead; 04-23-2012 at 10:49 AM.

  14. #14
    DIY Junior Member caldezrat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Extreme southern california
    Posts
    11

    Default

    I'm not sure I'm comfortable with eliminating the chlorine out of my home. I live in the lower Colorado River irrigation area in southeastern CA. It's been told to me that our drinking water has been through six sewage treatment plants as the water is used and reused along the Colorado before it gets to us. That's an ugly thought!

  15. #15
    In the Trades Tom Sawyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    2,940

    Default

    Yep but.....the chlorine has killed all those bugs before the water gets to your house so you can safely eliminate it.
    [B]No, plumbing ain't rocket science. Unlike rocket science, plumbing requires a license[B]

Similar Threads

  1. Culligan Water Softener system - virtually zero water flow
    By Qckslvr in forum Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and reviews
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 11-07-2011, 09:26 PM
  2. Constant Water flow through water softener drain line
    By Dale M. in forum Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and reviews
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 10-23-2011, 02:13 PM
  3. 30kgrain softener with Clack WS1 valve losing media out the drain
    By oreo in forum Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and reviews
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 03-16-2011, 04:00 PM
  4. Clack water softener.
    By abcrobots in forum Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and reviews
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 02-06-2011, 09:21 AM
  5. Clack softener heads
    By mattbee24 in forum Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Tricks
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-14-2007, 10:09 AM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •