Another old Kinetico

Old 03-23-07, 10:37 AM
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Another old Kinetico

After reading this forum for a couple of hours, I know a good deal more than when I started—enough to know I'd better ask some questions before going any further. This Kinetico was here when I came in 1990. The only hard copy I have is a brochure and a 1-page "INSTALLATION and START UP" sheet, which says my unit is the "Supra" model. (Mineral tanks outside the brine tank"). Tanks are about 8 1/2" dia. and Control Head 23" from floor.

I'm the only one here for the past year or so, but the "water meter" disk is marked "4"(# of users?). However, the operation has been OK, till I let the salt run low. So I added 100# of pellets and changed the line filter a few days ago. Since then I don't hear the blood-chilling screech I'd become used to at some point in the cycle--admittedly not very often with just me and that #4 disk.

What I DID hear was a noise in the pipes that drew me to the Kinetico, thinking I might have screwed up the filter replacement or something. Long story short—I just now traced the noise to an outside faucet that finally thawed, I guess. The reply to a previous question suggested this kind of leak was important, so I mention it here, wondering if/how it might affect the Kinetco operation.

After emptying most of the pellets, I checked these things from the Installation sheet:
1) manually put unit into "brine draw" ...and make sure water level in brine tank drops at least 1/4". [OK. Level was about 1/4" above grid platform to start with.]
2) place unit in "back wash"...fill till shut off...level approximately 1" above grid. [OK, but fill was not to 1", only back to 1/4" starting point.]

The water-meter control head gear moves, based on making a mark and running 2 faucets for 5 minutes.

Is there anything else I can do to see if it's working -- besides take a shower or two? Not that there's anything wrong with that, but it's barely Spring.

Last edited by Lucid; 03-23-07 at 10:39 AM. Reason: typo
Old 03-24-07, 08:14 AM
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The #4 disk has nothing to do with the number of people. As with most single tank softeners, the controls must take into account the hardness/iron count as well as the number of people using water (often based on 75 gallons per person per day). The only time a Kinetico has to deal with total number of person may be in commecial applications like motels and that would be more for flow rat and not regeneration timing.

Kinetico's twin tank design allows for continuous soft water service regardless of how often the water is running. The disk is used for calculating how many grains each tank is removing prior to regeneration and switching to the remote tank. A chart is used as a reference during water testing and set up.

The noise in the pipes may be a hammering that some home experience. There are small devices added to plumbing to limit or eliminate that problem. Most likely nothing to do with the softener.

There should be approximately one inch of water above the salt grid but this may vary slightly depending on set up. I hope you are using a quality salt to avoid dirt from accummulating in the brine drum.

Leaks in plumbing can affect any demand operated softener that uses water flow to meter its mechanism. Sometimes the water flow is so low that the meter may not pick it up and the softener is mis-reading the water usage. It is only responsible to take of such plumbing problems, regardless.

So your softener is probably 20 years old or more. That is considered excellent service history and little maintenace is required it seems. Mind your prefilters and use a high quality salt and few difficulties will happen.

Andy Christensen

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