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Thread: AutoPilot bad sensor?

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    AutoPilot bad sensor?

    Hi,

    I have an AutoPilot Total Control system running perfectly since last year.
    This weekend I cleaned my FNS DE Filter and suddenly the AutoPilot is claiming error, to the check flow.
    I've tried reconnecting the tri-sensor, cleaned filter screens, and checked flow without much success. The measurements from the "test" function of the AutoPilot all came in normal (3200 salt, 7.70 pH, 667 ORP) and all other components are running normal.

    Could my cleaning out the filter media have caused this problem or was it purely cooincidental?
    The other thing I that happened was when the pool was opened (late April) I had to jiggle the tri-sensor a few times to get the readings to come in correctly. Was this a sign of a sensor going bad?

    Any ideas what could be wrong here?

    TIA!
    Ron
    29000 gal gunite freeform with grey plaster,
    raised spa, mini grotto, waterfall, and Koi pond
    3 Pentair VS pumps, FNS DE, AutoPilot Total Command SWG,
    autofill, Mastertemp 400k Gas Heater, Polaris 480 and intellitouch automation

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    May 2007
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    Silver Spring, MD
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    Re: AutoPilot bad sensor?

    Welcome to TFP!

    You should make sure that both ends of the tri-sensor cable are firmly connected. Working on the filter you might have bumped the cable and accidentally pulled it part way out.

    With a Total Control System, the check flow indication happens both for the tri-sensor and for the flow sensor in the chemistry controller. Make sure there is still proper flow in the chemistry controller.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Re: AutoPilot bad sensor?

    Thanks Jason,

    I checked the other sensors, nothing looks out of the norm.
    Looks like I have to get someone out here to look at it. Glad it's still under warrantee.
    29000 gal gunite freeform with grey plaster,
    raised spa, mini grotto, waterfall, and Koi pond
    3 Pentair VS pumps, FNS DE, AutoPilot Total Command SWG,
    autofill, Mastertemp 400k Gas Heater, Polaris 480 and intellitouch automation

  4. Back To Top    #4
    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Silver Spring, MD
    Posts
    37,879

    Re: AutoPilot bad sensor?

    There is one more place to look. Check the mesh strainer in the AutoPilot manifold. If that is dirty it can cause a low flow error.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Ft Lauderdale, Florida
    Posts
    1,455

    Re: AutoPilot bad sensor?

    Jason is on target. Another place to check if you've verified Jason's suggestions...

    Please verify the display as to if it says Check FLOW, or Check Flow AT SENSOR.
    The first means the manifold, the second means at the flow cell (where the probes are).

    If it's the manifold, and I know I've seen Jason mention this before, it may be the manifold base check valve stuck in the opened position. To inspect this, locate the check valve first, and look for the red gasket on the inlet side. With the pump on, you should see the gasket in the opened position. Turn the pump off - the red gasket should close in the fully seated position to the inlet side. If the gasket remains in the opened position, there's debris keeping it stuck opened.
    Cycle the pump on and off several times to see if you can clear it. If not, take a plastic bag (sandwich bag, seran wrap, or similar) and wrap the manifold inlet screen so as to divert all the flow through the check valve. Cycle the pump on and off several times to clear the debris.

    Once you see the gaskets seating in the closed position with the pump off, you're back to normal.

    If it's the flow cell, on the left side, there's a dark "puck" that floats up with proper water flow into the flow cell. Ensure this is floating up.
    If not, you can remove it and clear any debris from it. Or you can simply disable it by going into the INSTALLER MENU. On SELECT SYSTEM, after you select TOTAL CONTROL, it asks, HAS SENSOR FLOW. Rather than pressing SELECT (for yes), press the arrow up or down to NO SENSOR FLOW or SENSOR NOT USED, then press SELECT.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Re: AutoPilot bad sensor?

    Thanks Jason and Sean,

    I will check the flow "sensor" tomorrow to see if I can find the puck (always good to learn new things with the equipment). I did clean the filter (wasn't dirty) so it appears that wasn't the issue. Someone is actually coming out tomorrow to check so I will be (or hope to be) happy to hear what may be the culprit behind this issue.

    Thanks again for your help!
    29000 gal gunite freeform with grey plaster,
    raised spa, mini grotto, waterfall, and Koi pond
    3 Pentair VS pumps, FNS DE, AutoPilot Total Command SWG,
    autofill, Mastertemp 400k Gas Heater, Polaris 480 and intellitouch automation

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Re: AutoPilot bad sensor?

    Well, there was no progress today. The guy who's suppose to come out to look at this never showed up.
    Hope he calls me back!

    I've also checked the puck, it's fully pushed to the top so the flow is there. The error does read check "flow at sensor"
    The check valve looks good too - although in the closed position the red still shows a little. I assume that is normal.

    I will continue to wait I guess...sigh.
    29000 gal gunite freeform with grey plaster,
    raised spa, mini grotto, waterfall, and Koi pond
    3 Pentair VS pumps, FNS DE, AutoPilot Total Command SWG,
    autofill, Mastertemp 400k Gas Heater, Polaris 480 and intellitouch automation

  8. Back To Top    #8
    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Silver Spring, MD
    Posts
    37,879

    Re: AutoPilot bad sensor?

    You can disable that sensor. Read poolsean's message above.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: AutoPilot bad sensor?

    Hi Jason,

    I did just that soon after and the readings were still incorrect, leading me to believe it was not producing chlorine and adding acid. Regardless the tech came out and replace the Tri sensor and that fixed the salt, pH, and ORP readings. Then when enabling the "HAS FLOW SENSOR" parameter, it brought back the check flow sensor error. So turned this parameter off to enable chlorine generation and acid feed and now waiting to replace the flow switch.

    Anyway, my dealings with Autopilot and forum members have been extremely helpful and comforting. Hope this will be resolved soon.
    29000 gal gunite freeform with grey plaster,
    raised spa, mini grotto, waterfall, and Koi pond
    3 Pentair VS pumps, FNS DE, AutoPilot Total Command SWG,
    autofill, Mastertemp 400k Gas Heater, Polaris 480 and intellitouch automation

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