Water softener brining problem


Old 01-27-02, 10:31 AM
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Water softener brining problem

I have a sears water softener that is about 10 years old. About a year ago, I moved to a newly constructed home and brought it with me.

It worked great for about six months, then it started having problems.

I've taken almost everything apart and cleaned it. Everything appears to be working correctly, but it doesn't seem to draw the brine into the resin tank.

I've done a lot of experimenting and have found that if I shut off the water source while it is in the brining stage for about 5 seconds and then turn it back on, it starts drawing the brine into the resin tank (it doesn't seem to drain the brine tank to the level it used to, but it does drain it down a few inches and the water is soft for a few days).

Something somewhere appears to be blocking the flow and I'm out of ideas. I know this is something I can fix if I knew what to clean or replace, but I am completely stuck.

Any suggestions?

Thanks very much.

P.S. One of my neighbors had a new softener installed and the installer strongly recommended a sedement filter because of all the construction going on in the area. I'm thinking that might be the source of the problem originally and that there is something clogged somewhere that I haven't found. Does that sound likely?
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Old 01-27-02, 10:52 AM
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Your problem is going to be one or two things maybe alittle of both. The tube that runs from your salt tank to your resin tank maybe sucking air when its trying to draw brine. Maybe a loose connection at the brine tank or resin tank. Second cause or secondary cause would be the softners seals need replaced. 10 yrs. old is old enough to need new seals and like I said it could be one of these or a combination of both. Hope this helps!
Old 01-27-02, 07:05 PM
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Thanks, I'll give the seals a try. Looks like I can get a seal kit for about $25.
Old 01-28-02, 05:42 AM
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I would also thoroughly clean the venturi and all the smaller parts therein. The sears system is very tempremental to dirt, and if dirt is introduced, will prevent it from drawing the brine into the resin tank. Another area to look at is the brining assembly itself. If you move the system, you may have jarred something loose on the brining tube assembly.
Old 01-28-02, 09:48 AM
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I would go with the venturi or an air leak in the tubing between the valve and the brine tank. All it takes is a small piece of debris in the venturi and you are sunk.
Old 01-28-02, 10:42 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions. I had already cleaned the venturi (several times ), but I checked the tubing more carefully and noticed that the tubing connecting the brine well to the venturi housing seemed inflexible and brittle at the housing end. I trimmed an inch of tubing and all seems well now. I also replaced a couple of o-rings that I happened to have the correct size replacements for, so that might have been it too, but I suspect a leak in the tubing is more likely.

I appreciate all the help


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