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Thread: Water Softener Raising Sodium Level Problem

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    Water Softener Raising Sodium Level Problem

    Hello all. Re-posting this from about a week ago with an update on a solution I've thought of and hoping for input on that. Solution (hopefully) is at the bottom in bold. Here it is:


    After about an hour of searching, I couldn't find anything similar to my problem so please help. This is the first summer for my pool, and the salt level in the water was originally set at 3000 PPM by my pool service to work in conjunction with the Hayward SWCG last September. Everything was ok until recently. One of the several problems that's come up is that my salt level is up to 4300. And since I'm sure the salt fairy hasn't been visiting my yard, I've come to conclude the Water Softener is causing the sodium level to go up since it is connected to the autofill. So before I drain and replace, I want to know suggestions on how to get around this. My builder told me that the autofill ran direct from the street, but when I checked recently, the main into the house goes right into the filter and softener units. He's out of the picture since I fired him for other issues, so his lie does not surprise me. The way I see it there are three ways to remedy this, and I'll list them in order of desirability:

    1) Install some kind of low cost sodium filter at the autofill
    2) Replace my salt based water softener with a low cost descaler (also called a conditioner)
    3) Get this re-plumbed somehow to send the pre-softened water directly to the autofill.

    A trip to Leslie's for testing of the water showed 600 PPM, and the gal there said there is no filter of this type, but the girl behind the counter looked about 11 and I would not trust her expertise. The descaling options which consist of wrapping wire around the pipe seem good, but there are a lot of naysayers saying science does not support manufacturers claims, and I don't want my house water to suffer just to correct the autofill. And a re-plumb seems like it could be pretty costly. It would require splitting the line and running pipe an additional approx 200 feet to meet the autofill. And I don't even know if that's legal.

    Or could something funny be going on and the 600 PPM water not be enough to bring the 12,000 gallon pool up 1200 PPM in 10 months? Please help, and thanks in advance.

    I have found my water softener, a Morton MSD30D, can also work with potassium chloride pellets. Do I have anything to worry about by having potassium instead of sodium going into the auto fill valve?
    Doughboy 18x38 AGP buried 2' deep. 18,400 gal. Hayward Power Flo Matrix. Hayward Pro Series High Rate Sand Filter. TF-100 test kit.

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    Christian's Avatar
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    Re: Water Softener Raising Sodium Level Problem

    Potassium chloride acts just like regular salt once it hits your pool water. You're going to run into the same problem.

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    Re: Water Softener Raising Sodium Level Problem

    Well before they take me to the nuthouse, let me update after speaking with the manufacturer of my water softener, Morton. The customer support rep told me that there was no way, even if it was malfunctioning, the softener could bring the salt level up to 600 ppm. Can anyone comment on problems with salt levels via auto fill?
    Doughboy 18x38 AGP buried 2' deep. 18,400 gal. Hayward Power Flo Matrix. Hayward Pro Series High Rate Sand Filter. TF-100 test kit.

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    Christian's Avatar
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    Re: Water Softener Raising Sodium Level Problem

    Hmm, I don't know where the salt would be coming from if not the softener. Hopefully someone will be along soon to enlighten both of us!

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    Re: Water Softener Raising Sodium Level Problem

    I don't know how the chemistry works, but my understanding is, the dissolved solids removed from your water by the softener get replaced by salt. There is a drop test for salt, maybe it's worth it to see if the faucet water has measurable salt in it, if so I would agree that it's the softener.

    If you are willing to stop using the auto fill, there should be a bypass on the softener. Bypass the softener, fill the pool, then "shut off" the bypass. It's not pretty or convenient, but another option.
    18k Inground Plaster pool / TriStar Variable Speed Pump and Controller
    48sq ft Hayward DE filter/ Swim pure Plus 40k cell / Kreepy Krauly
    Solaxx Ph-Tek

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    Re: Water Softener Raising Sodium Level Problem

    Are you sure of the original salt level? I don't use a salt generator, but I do use conditioned water to add to my pool and test the level every month.
    Larry in Texas

    Above ground 7,700 gallons, 19 inch sand filter ( 2 sq. ft.), Liquidator, and a WaterWay Hi-Flo Pump with an A.O. Smith 1 hp SF 1.0 motor.

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