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Thread: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

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    Question SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    My SwimPure Plus system is 7 years old and has been working just fine. Original cell has tested good twice in the last couple of months; I am meticulous about cleaning and acid washing. Salt is about 3000. T-15 cell running about 50-60% in summer.

    About a month ago I tested the water and chlorine was pretty much zero; usually it is near 5. Cleaned and acid-washed cell, then took to Leslie for test. Cell tested "good," just as it had a couple of months earlier. Put everything back together and started pump.

    With panel switch to "Off" I wait until No Flow light goes off. Bring display to instant salt reading (says 0) and set unit to "Auto." After a few seconds the unit clicks and instant salt reading jumps to very high number, then rolls down to about 3100. That number stays up for a few seconds then starts going down - 2800-2500-2000-1500-0. The countdown takes less than 10 seconds once it starts. At that point the Generating light goes off. I can shut power off, back on, reset instant salt, and the same thing will happen.

    I called Hayward this morning and was told to call a pool company. About all the guy would say was that it was "probably" something in the panel electronics. I called Hayward a couple of years and they were much more helpful; something has changed.

    So - my considerable research points to one of the two boards in the panel, but which one?
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    Actually sounds like a bad cell. What are the diagnostics with the cell off and on?

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesW View Post
    What are the diagnostics with the cell off and on?
    Sorry, I'm not sure I understand how to answer that.
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    You need to push the diagnostics button and write down the numbers as you go through them.

    The readings will give:
    Temp
    Cell V
    Cell A
    % Output
    Salinity
    AL-x
    Software rev
    Cell type
    16k gal plaster with raised spa, Jandy DEV60 filter, 2 HP 2-speed SHPF Jandy Stealth pump
    Hayward Aqua Rite T-15 SWCG, Jandy LXi 400k BTU NG heater, 350 sq.ft. of Sun Star solar panels, TF-100 Test Kit, Dolphin s300i Cleaner
    Test Kits . Pool Math . Chlorine/CYA Chart . The SLAM Process

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    sorry, it was late - it didn't occur to me that you could read the panel with the cell off. My brain read "system off."

    ON
    Temp 87
    Cell V 25.5
    Cell A 5.65
    % Output 64
    Salinity 2500
    AL-x 0
    Software rev 1.4
    Cell type n/a (older panel with only 7 readouts)

    OFF
    Temp 87
    Cell V 31.7
    Cell A 0
    % Output 64
    Salinity 0
    AL-x 0
    Software rev 1.4
    Cell type n/a


    BUT - the system was working this morning, though the salt reading is on the low side.

    More info. I first took the "on" readings then turned the cell off. Turned the cell back on and watched the salt reading - it started about 6000 and quickly went down to about 2800. Watched a few more seconds and it started falling, stopping at 2100. Now the Check Salt light is on.

    Turned cell off again, waited a few seconds, then back on. Salt reading jump up the fall back to 2800. I watched it for several minutes and the reading stayed at 2700-2800. System is generating.

    ok - so it's been about 30 minutes since that previous paragraph. Salt is now reading 2400 and Check Salt light is on.
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    Probably a bad cell. What does a salt test show for salt (not the box reading).

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesW View Post
    Probably a bad cell. What does a salt test show for salt (not the box reading).
    Just got back from Leslie's - salt reads 3000. I check it about every 4-6 wks and it's been around that 3000 for quite awhile.

    Manager at Leslie's seems to think it's the board. Seven years in the AZ sun is not kind to electronics. That's my bad, unfortunately as I should have it covered or mounted it differently.
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    It's the cell. The board is fine.

    5 to 7 years is a typical life for a cell.

    The only thing that ever really goes wrong with the board is the thermistor. You can tell that yours is ok by the voltage readings. However, I would recommend that you get a thermistor in case yours does fail. It's pretty common for them to fail eventually and yours is old. They're fairly easy to replace if you can solder.

    Digikey AS32-2R025 or SL32-2R025. Yours is probably the SL32-2R025.

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    guess I'll have to bite that bullet. guess the good news is that it's time for a new one regardless.

    soldering is not a problem; I'll check out that part.

    will followup with results in next few days. .
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    Update: Not sure it this tells us anything, but I'll throw it out. Yesterday I went out to check the panel, just for grins. It was afternoon so SWG was off and VS pump was in "slow" mode. Turned panel on (cell off) and as expected the No Flow LED was flashing. Next turned cell to Auto and cranked up pump speed.

    First thing I noticed when I powered up panel was that it was in metric mode, and I'm pretty sure I didn't do anything. Switched to Temp and reset to F. I saw this maybe a month or so ago but didn't think much about it.

    After I bumped the pump up and waited for the No Flow to go off I noticed the panel readout start cycling through all the positions as if I was bumping the Diagnostics button. I wasn't touching the panel. A couple of the LEDs flashed as well. Once the No Flow went out I heard the click of power to the cell and the display settled down. Power and Generating were all that were lit. Salt reading jumped to 4000 then settled at 2800 for about a minute then started dropping. It stopped this time at 2100 and the Check Salt light came on.

    Still planning to replace my cell, but wonder if there is more going on here....
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

  11. Back To Top    #11

    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    The cell is bad. Also, I think that the display board needs to be reset. Turn off power, then remove and reinstall the display board.

    There are seven metal pins that go from the main circuit board through seven holes in the display board. The pins carry power and information. If the contact points are not good, then the display can act erratically. There are four plastic standoff posts that hold the display board in place.

    Usually if you remove and reinstall the board the contacts improve.

    Also note that a flashing no flow light means that there is flow but less than about 30 seconds have elapsed since detecting flow. It just a safety countdown timer. A solid no flow light means no flow detected.

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    Clean the contact pins - good idea. I know how to do that. The cell is generating this morning, btw. I asked the manager at my local Leslie's about the cell tester and she said it is strictly pass/fail. I think we are learning that the threshold for failure is pretty high, allowing a marginal cell to skate by. I think this is kind of like testing car batteries. There is a quick test that a marginal battery can often pass. Put it on a load test and they can't hide. We need a load test for salt cells.
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

  13. Back To Top    #13

    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    Also note that there are two polarities to the plates. The polarity switches every two hours for r1.4 circuit boards. One side could be performing better than the other. Therefore, you might seem to be ok for a while and then not. The best test for a cell is how accurate the box salt reading is on each polarity.

    Did the tester check both polarities?

  14. Back To Top    #14

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    So how do you check both polarities? Is it just a matter of checking the readings two hours apart?

    oh, and another random piece of data - when I opened the panel a couple of days ago I immediately noticed it was in metric mode. Don't think I did it. I saw something similar a couple of months ago. I just reset it and moved on.
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

  15. Back To Top    #15

    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    To check both polarities, you can wait for the cycle to restart or you can turn it off and back on. Wait about 5 minutes to allow the thermistor to cool down.

    The system probably switched to metric mode due to bad contact points between the display board and the main board. Resetting the display board will usually be enough to fix erratic display and setting problems.

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    quick update. So I pulled the board and sprayed a little contact cleaner and reinserted the board. Also added a little salt - the tester now says 3400 (was 3000). That's about 3 weeks ago. For whatever reason I seem to be getting chlorine. I haven't played with the settings to see what happens at different readings, but bottom line is that for now I have good chlorine so I'm not going to spring for a new cell. I do, however, monitor it a little more often than I used to just be safe.

    Plan now is to see if I can make it to winter then revisit the issue in the spring. Thanks for all the help!
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    Back again. Well, after limping through the summer I gave up and bought a new cell (7 seasons wasn't bad, I'm told). Installed the new cell last night and everything looks good except the salt reading. With the old cell the panel was reading about 2000, and most of the time the Low Salt was lit and the Generating light was off. With the new cell it shows 4500-4800 for salt. The indicators show normal operation - the High Salt light is not lit. Should I be concerned (about too much salt)?
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

  18. Back To Top    #18

    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    As the old cell began to fail, the salt reading would begin to fall lower and lower than actual. The new cell shows the actual salt level. The high salt doesn't light until the amps hit 8.0. The amps are a function of the salt level and the water temperature. If the water were warmer, the amps would be over 8.

    Ideally, the salt level should be below 3,900.

    What are the current readings?

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    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    So i drained some water and let the pump run a couple of days. Current panel readings.

    ON
    Temp 71
    Cell V 24.6
    Cell A 7.11
    % Output 30
    Salinity 4300
    AL-x 5
    Software rev 1.4

    This afternoon I took a sample to a pool store that uses the strips to check salt. That reading is 3750

    I'm still not sure I trust my panel. For example, several times when I've checked it the panel has switched itself to metric.

    do I still need to drain more water?
    24,000 IG PebbleTec, 9'+ deep end, System 3 filters, IntelliFlo VS pump, Hayward SwimPure

  20. Back To Top    #20

    Re: SwimPure salt readings drop to zero after reset

    As long as the amps are not close to 8, you should be ok. I would suggest that you get the k-1766 salt test kit.

    If the settings are constantly changing, that's usually due to a display board that is not making good contact with the back board pins. Try removing the display board and reinstalling it. Spraying the display board with electrical contact cleaner can help.

    Turn off power to unit, remove display board, spray with cleaner, allow to dry, reinstall making sure to allign correct holes with pins.

    Also, the AL-5 should be AL-0. This most likely got changed by the bad connection of the display board.

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