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Thread: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

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    Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    I have an Intellichlor IC 40. I had the pool built late last August and the unit never worked properly. Having never owned a pool before, much less a chlorine generator, I wasn’t sure if something was wrong. So basically when it’s running, the cell light is never lit up. Every other light is on and green. I noticed the salt level is above 3200 ppm after multiple testing and the chlorine levels never change. The salt level light says it’s low. When you swim in it after a week of not shocking it, it feels like you’re swimming in lake water. I’ve unplugged it and plugged it back it to no avail. When I go back to the place that installed the pool, the owner is the absolute only person who knows anything about these types of chorine generators. When I talk to him, he says he’ll be over on a certain date, but never shows. I think I need to fix the problem on my own, but I need help. I’ve taken the cell out and looked inside and I don’t see any scale, but I sprayed the inside with a garden hose, but that didn’t change a thing.
    20,000 gal oval IG, vinyl liner. 1 HP Pentair Superflo pump. Intellichlor ic20 SWCG with easy touch, Sand Dollar SD80 sand filter, Taylor K-2006 test kit.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    call Intellichlor support
    either the unit is not setup correctly or it's faulty

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    Have you read the owner's manual? Do you have one? You can download from web. What's the percentage set at? What is the FC level? The light will be off during the off cycle. If it's never on then either the led doesn't work or your pool really doen't have cl. The salinity may need calibrating. Have you added salt in an attempt to raise the ppm reading? Need more info.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    A complete set of water test results would be a big help.
    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

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    Okay, here's the thing...if your water was not properly balanced when you began to first use it, it could have become overwhelmed by organics in your water and can't keep up (or it malfunctioned to begin with). If after you shocked (and it sounds like you have?) if you didn't completely kill the organics entirely, it still cannot operate properly. IF it's producing chlorine, organic compounds in the water are likely consuming chlorine as it's produced. Are you adding chlorine any other way? When you say shocking, what did you use?

    We need a full set of test results to determine if you have the recommended levels for an SWG:
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...ater_generator

    and if you do in fact have green/cloudy/dull/murky water, you need to shock it with liquid chlorine until you can get the FC to hold overnight, using an FAS-DPD chlorine test. By ensuring that your FC is holding, you can pinpoint if the SWG is working properly or not, or if its simply a case of improper water balance and/or organics.

    Do you have one of the recommended test kits? If not, I would recommend you order one and while you wait for it to arrive, perhaps a pool store can test the water for you?
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    what is your chlorine percentage set to... if its on 20% then the cell light might only be on for about 12 minutes every hour. Try putting it on 100% to see if the cell light comes on, if it doesnt then something is wrong.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    An off topic discussion of the merits of checking out the SWG hardware first, vs balancing the chemistry first has been moved to The Deep End.

    If the red "Low" salt level light is lit, the unit will not operate. It is fairly common for a SWG and the salt test to disagree. I would add about 500 ppm of salt and see if the SWG moves to "Check Salt" or "Good". The salt sensor in the SWG could well be wrong, but it is the one that decides if it will allow the unit to operate or not, so you need to humor it (ie raise the salt level).
    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

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    I have an IC40.
    You said that every other light is green, except the cell light. If thats the case, why do you say the salt level light says low? If thats the case, that means the light reads red, not green. Please check it again and be specific with what lights are green, red, or yellow, or not lit. Also, you say the salt is at 3200 ppm.
    Is that measured by strip, or by an Intellitouch control box?

    If the red low salt light is on, it will not make chlorine. If its yellow, it will generate.

    If all the lights are green except the cell light, set the unit to 100%. If it doesnt light then, either the light is burned out (doubtful) or the unit is faulty.
    Please psot baack and clarify light status and how you measured the salt level.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    My Cell light is not lit. The only other red light is the low salt light. I check the salt with the aquacheck test strips. It is 3200 ppm. I added another bag of salt to the pool and it never changed, even if the unit thought it was low.

    EDIT: My numbers:

    Chlorine: very low (0 ppm)
    pH: 7.8
    Total alkylinity: 120-180 ppm
    CYA: very low (0 ppm)
    20,000 gal oval IG, vinyl liner. 1 HP Pentair Superflo pump. Intellichlor ic20 SWCG with easy touch, Sand Dollar SD80 sand filter, Taylor K-2006 test kit.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    ok, sounds like it needs to be field calibrated. If the strips read 3200 ppm and you still have a red light, sounds like the salinity censor could be faulty. Field calibrate instructions are here:

    http://members.cox.net/vkandbhome/in...hlor%20cal.pdf

    This should get it going. I'd still call pentair and tell them about the issue. Several, including myself have had issues with the low salt or check salt lights being on when the salt level has been within specs by the strips.

    edit:
    just saw your numbers. Get some bleach in there ASAP. But, if it green, you already have algea, so you need to go through the shock process. Add the cya too or you will fight an up hilll battle getting the chlorine to hold. Get some CYA in there as well, or when you do add chlorine,it wont last in the sun. The TA is way to high for a SWG. You want that to be about 80 ppm. pH is ok, a little high, but doable. I'd still get that down to 7.2-7.5 so the chlorine will work a little better. Dont worry about the TA now. /thats for later. Field calibrate the SWG to get it woring, shock the pool with bleach as per pool school instructions, and hopefully when you get the pool clean again, the SWG can do the rest. Then, work on lowering your TA.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    Thaks for the link. My pool isn't green FYI.
    20,000 gal oval IG, vinyl liner. 1 HP Pentair Superflo pump. Intellichlor ic20 SWCG with easy touch, Sand Dollar SD80 sand filter, Taylor K-2006 test kit.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperchord24
    Thaks for the link. My pool isn't green FYI.
    Id still bring it up to shock level. how long has it been without chlorine? read pool school and it will tell you what to do.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    Strips can be wrong. I had some Aquachecks that read 4600 ppm no matter what. Got the Taylor kit and now I have believable numbers. I'd verify the salt level from some other means before attempting to re-calibrate. I'd also raise the cya at least to the recommended levels from Pentair. I trusted my pool store readings the first summer I had my pool and I could never hold more than 2-3 ppm even at 100%. The PS store said this was to be expected. I bought my own kit and found my cya was 20-30, vs the PS 60-100. I added cya to 80 ppm and now my IC40 holds 5-10 ppm at 40% on 100 degree days with high bather loads. And led's do go out. My unit had the yellow add salt light go out. Got a warranty replacement unit two months ago. Tech said my previous version swg had issues with these lights going out. My new unit has much brighter leds that are easy to read even in direct sunlight. The tech also mentioned that Pentair frowns upon field salt calibrations because it doesn't often fix the problem. Don't know the veracity of that statement. I'm not sure what field calibrating a faulty salt sensor will buy you long term. I would definitely get cl up pronto. Organics aren't always visible. Add the sunscreen (cya) too.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    If he has a red light, its not working. Hard to tell what the unit is reading for salt since i dont think he has it hooked up to an Easy Touch box.

    You could always just add 50 pounds of salt and see if that gives you a yellow light at least. A yellow check salt will generate chlorine.


    On the recalibration, if he can verify he has 3200 ppm salt, i think its the only choice here. At least it would verify that the IC40 he has will generate chlorine. At any rate, if you can verify the salt concentration is within paramters, you need a service call.
    Understand on the CYA, but that wont fix the red light issue.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    The only red light was the low salt light. I have since recalibrated and all the lights are working. That was my first concern. I'll recheck the salt level and recalibrate again since I have backwashed and vacuumed a couple times. As for CYA, based on the strips it is low. But the colors aren't easy to distinguish between. I checked the chlorine this morning and it is still low. Hopefully when I add some CYA, it will go up. In any case, the pool place has a computer to check my numbers. BTW, I do have the SWG hook up to an intellitouch.
    20,000 gal oval IG, vinyl liner. 1 HP Pentair Superflo pump. Intellichlor ic20 SWCG with easy touch, Sand Dollar SD80 sand filter, Taylor K-2006 test kit.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    Ah, ok. What does the intellitouch say you have for salt? Its under the diagnostics menu. In your original post, you said the ppm you got for salt was off of strips. The IC40 shows red, yellow, or green salt light based on what it reads for salinity.

    Is salt light green now? What does the Easytouch say the salt level is?

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    How do you check it with the easytouch?
    20,000 gal oval IG, vinyl liner. 1 HP Pentair Superflo pump. Intellichlor ic20 SWCG with easy touch, Sand Dollar SD80 sand filter, Taylor K-2006 test kit.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    Ok, now we gettin somewhere. The IC40 measures the salinity based on its own internal probe. if that probe tells the SWG that the salt level is below 2500 ppm, then you get a red light. If its between 2500-2900, then you get a yellow light and it will make chlorine. Above 4000 ppm, the light will flash green and tell you the salt is too high, but it will still work.

    Now, the way you tell what the IC40 is reading for salt is:

    push the menu button
    push the down arrow to scroll to the diagnostics LED
    push the right arrow
    this will give you another list of items
    push the down arrow and scroll to the intellichlor LED
    push the right arrow button
    You can then see a readout on the screen for the salt level the IC40 is reading.

    You didnt say you had an easytouch box. If i had known that, thats the 1st thing I would have told you should have checked. If the reading was below 2500ppm, no way it was going to make chlorine until you dumped more salt in or field calibrated it. If the strip read 3200 and the easytouch read below 2500, that difference is above the error for the strips, i would think.
    Do the diagnostic and see what the IC40 is reporting as the salt level.

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    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    Thanks Brad. I did what you said and I got 4500 ppm and under that it said "OK- no errors." I'm about to add CYA to see if my free chlorine goes up as a result.
    20,000 gal oval IG, vinyl liner. 1 HP Pentair Superflo pump. Intellichlor ic20 SWCG with easy touch, Sand Dollar SD80 sand filter, Taylor K-2006 test kit.

  20. Back To Top    #20

    Re: Problem with my intellichlor IC40

    Ok, cool beans. 4500 is a little high, but with some backwashing, and fresh fill over time, it should be fine. No need to recalibrate. Between the intellitouch box, the strips, and even take a sample to a couple of pool stores to measure the salinity, you can get a pretty good idea of the salt level. If it were mine, i would set the intellichlor at the easytouch panel to about 40% and run the pump overnight. How many gallons in your pool?

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