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Thread: Purifier Off - Check flow

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    Purifier Off - Check flow

    Hi I would be very grateful if someone could help me. The red light is blinking on my pool pilot and the screen is saying purifier off check flow. I was playing around with it yesterday and calibrated the salt it says I need over 450 pounds. That's kind of hard for me to imagine as just 3 months ago I put in an extra 3 bags and the balance was fine. Occasionally, temperature sensor gone bad also pops up on the screen, however it seems fine as it's giving me a reading of around 30c which seems about right. Don't know how to exactly troubleshoot the problem. I am thinking of throwing in 4 bags of salt to start!
    19,000 gallon in-ground, salt water, gunite pool. Aqua Rite chlorine generator, AL-0. Pool installed 2004. We've only owned the house/pool since 11/2009 and never owned a pool before this.

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    ok thanks will do that. I don't have any strips, its harder to get as I am in the caribbean on a small island. Is there another way for me to test the salt like with the pilot for eg. If not I will just order them from the other island and it should be here in a couple days.
    19,000 gallon in-ground, salt water, gunite pool. Aqua Rite chlorine generator, AL-0. Pool installed 2004. We've only owned the house/pool since 11/2009 and never owned a pool before this.

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    I would start with correcting your flow condition. If there's not enough water flow to activate the flow switch, there may not be enough water to allow a good read on the salt sensors.
    Check your skimmer and pump baskets, back wash your filter (or remove the cartridge and clean), check the manifold screen and cell for scale, ensure your valves in the plumbing is in the correct positions.

    For salt, dip your fingers in the water and taste. If you can taste salt, you've got about 3500 + ppm.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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    polyvue's Avatar
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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    Quote Originally Posted by Poolsean
    For salt, dip your fingers in the water and taste. If you can taste salt, you've got about 3500 + ppm.
    I'm going to remember this for future reference...! Now, tell me how I can ascertain the level of chlorine, cyanuric acid and pH (to the nearest .000001)
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
    __
    View of spiral galaxy in Ursa Major NGC6217 - Hubble Telescope 2009

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    Ok so I just put my finger in the pool and I can taste salt! Also the pump basket and filter has been cleaned and also the manifold. The water pressure coming out of the jets also seems fine, the usual amount.
    19,000 gallon in-ground, salt water, gunite pool. Aqua Rite chlorine generator, AL-0. Pool installed 2004. We've only owned the house/pool since 11/2009 and never owned a pool before this.

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    i wouldn't rely on a finger test that much, different people have different sensitivity

    more accurate test would be to pre-mix certain salt content in a glass and then taste to see which one matches your pool water taste, but even then the chance is you would probably be about 1000ppm off

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    lol...
    Strannik, you've been around salt pools maybe as much as I have. Really, I can do my dip and taste test and tell if there's enough salt, and around what the salinity is, to within 300 ppm. I'm still curious as to your 500 ppm salt chlorine generator though.
    Here's a funny salt solution mix, as per your recommendation to pre mix a certain salt content and compare. Take a standard 1/2 liter bottle of water and add two packets of WENDY'S salt. That should get you to around 3200 ppm.

    qsch - at the bottom of the manifold is a clear/opaque check valve. When the pump is on, you should be able to see a red gasket towards the inlet side. When you turn the pump off, this gasket should seat fully in the closed position. Try turning the pump on and off, and observe the positions of the red gasket to make sure it's moving. If it's stuck in the opened position, it may cause not enough water flow to get to the tri-sensor, creating both conditions you described (flow and salt).
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    hehe, i never tried to test salt by taste, so have absolutely no experience in it
    i usually use salt meters which are calibrated very often with standard solutions

    if you are curious about our fresh water chlorinators, send me a pm

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    Thanks Guys, you are funny !

    At present I am lost. I just checked the clear valve and indeed when the pump is turned off it closes in and the seal goes in all the way. When it starts it opens about 2/3 of an inch. I checked the filter and the pump basket and both are clean. I tasted the salt and it tastes pretty salty enough at least as it used to be when it worked fine.

    I also threw in about 2 liters of acid. Don't know for sure if that will help. The filter which is in has been in since December...?
    19,000 gallon in-ground, salt water, gunite pool. Aqua Rite chlorine generator, AL-0. Pool installed 2004. We've only owned the house/pool since 11/2009 and never owned a pool before this.

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    Quote Originally Posted by polyvue
    Quote Originally Posted by Poolsean
    For salt, dip your fingers in the water and taste. If you can taste salt, you've got about 3500 + ppm.
    I'm going to remember this for future reference...! Now, tell me how I can ascertain the level of chlorine, cyanuric acid and pH (to the nearest .000001)
    I though all pool people knew these tricks.
    For Chlorine, OTO drop in the pool test.
    Cyanuric acid, OTO drop in the pool test.
    pH, Phenol Red drop in the pool test.

    Its the two bottle test assurance plan. complete pool chemistry in a pocket and the two finger dip test. Darn near to 0.0001 accuracy.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    qsch,
    "The filter which is in has been in since December...?" as in physically installed since Dec or has not been removed and cleaned since Dec? Is this a cartridge filter? If so, take it out and clean it with a hose and a high pressure nozzle (not a pressure washer). If it's a DE or Sand filter, go ahead and backwash it.

    Loosen the upper unions and remove the lower cell union. Swing it away from the manifold base, but watch out, because when you start up the pump, it's gonna get wet! All you're looking to check is to see that you have a strong flow coming down through the upper half, so turn the pump on just long enough for that, then shut it off. HOWEVER, observe to see if the Check Flow display is still on.

    Once these have been checked, then I would suspect a defective tri-sensor cord and/or trisensor, which both come togther now, so as to eliminate any issues with the connection point between the two.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    Yes it is clean, we clean it at least 2 times a week. I just checked it today and there is no dirt in it. We do use a power wash to clean it!

    By saying we have it since December I mean that's when we got it new. Someone told me they are not to last more than 6 months so I thought maybe its time to get a new one, that it is slowing down the flow maybe?

    How do you want me to check the flow exactly. Take off the filter top, then put on the pump. (I cant imagine that as then all the water will gush out)

    Also we have always used a power wash. Is that a problem? Our water pressure here in the Caribbean isn't that strong.

    The filter is a starite cartridge filter.
    19,000 gallon in-ground, salt water, gunite pool. Aqua Rite chlorine generator, AL-0. Pool installed 2004. We've only owned the house/pool since 11/2009 and never owned a pool before this.

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    New2Me's Avatar
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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    Copy and paste from a .pdf doesn't work so great, but here is info that I think is for an autopilot tri-sensor cable
    check-out procedure(it doesn't say it on this page, but I think that the power to the unit should be off FIRST.) Poolsean could verify if this is a correct procedure, and if this info is for your particular model, since you didn't state what it is.
    Anyway, Best Wishes, and Good Luck![attachment=0:aket7pkd]gview.png[/attachment:aket7pkd]
    Attached Images Attached Images
    22 x 40 IG vinyl lined, 23,570 gal.
    1 hp. Pac-Fab Challenger pump 300# sand filter
    Intex 8110 SWG, Hayward CL220 offline feeder
    Hayward 250K Btu gas heater
    Aquabots

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    Yes that's the same plug going into the flow sensor. Thanks Loads. All I need now are some detailed instructions how to check them with a tester. Do I just keep the machine running and whilst the plug is pulled out I put the tester leads on pin 1 & 2??? What do the instructions mean by manually adding the flow paddle to the center post? What do I do if it doesnt work. I would assume that I need to get a new unit?
    19,000 gallon in-ground, salt water, gunite pool. Aqua Rite chlorine generator, AL-0. Pool installed 2004. We've only owned the house/pool since 11/2009 and never owned a pool before this.

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    We FINALLY FIGURED IT OUT! The reason it was saying purifier off is because the same plug going into the sensor has a short. Even though we took it out several times before and pushed it back in it still kept blinking. Today we gave it a hard tap and it finally worked!
    19,000 gallon in-ground, salt water, gunite pool. Aqua Rite chlorine generator, AL-0. Pool installed 2004. We've only owned the house/pool since 11/2009 and never owned a pool before this.

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    New2Me's Avatar
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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    qsch,
    First, let me state that I am NOT an Autopilot certified technician, but my wife finds me fairly handy!
    I do not know if the flow sensor switch is supposed to be Normally Open (NO) or Normally Closed (NC) but to check it, you would need a multi-meter, or a battery powered continuity tester-
    1. Disconnect power to the Autopilot unit panel
    2. Unplug the sensor cable from inside the main panel, and check for continuity(very low resistance) from the flow sensor wires (pins 1 and 2, red and white wires) with the pump off and then on. If the sensor is working it will switch from open to closed(or closed to open) when there is enough flow to operate it.
    3. If you do not see a change in continuity at the panel plug end of the wires, check at the sensor itself for the change.
    If there is no change at the sensor itself, then it is bad, if the sensor changes, but not the plug end, then the cable could have a bad wire/connection, check it for cuts and kinks. If the sensor and the cable both are good, then make sure that plug to the panel main board is good and tight. All that is left that could be bad is the Main panel (which should have a 5 year warranty .)
    If the sensor itself is bad, you might be able to nurse the unit along by placing a jumper wire(or paper clip) from pin 1 to pin 2 on the main panel board, ***BUT*** the unit will not have any idea that there is NO FLOW when the pump is off and could turn on, causing unknown harm to itself and any objects nearby.
    Since the flow and salt sensor both use the same cable, and you are getting both errors, the problem is likely in the cable, or its connections to the sensor or panel.
    Best Wishes, and Good Luck!!!
    22 x 40 IG vinyl lined, 23,570 gal.
    1 hp. Pac-Fab Challenger pump 300# sand filter
    Intex 8110 SWG, Hayward CL220 offline feeder
    Hayward 250K Btu gas heater
    Aquabots

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    The diagram is mostly correct, but the plug configuration going to the Power Supply will be different. The straight configuration is for an older LS series. The DIG-220 will have a 6 position connector, but it will be paired, three sets of two. The color wires will be the same though (You can remove the plastic housing to reveal the wires). I've attached the connector configuration for the DIG-220 unit.

    The steps New2me listed to isolate which component is defective, is correct. Disregard jumping of the flow switch terminals though. It's not possible on the DIG unit.

    Regarding your cartridge, it's possible that if you were using a high pressure washer, on a high setting, it can damage the cartridge quicker than normal, so that 6 months or less may be correct. I would go by your pressure gauge reading instead. With a clean filter, you pressure gauge should normally be about 7 - 10 psi. Remove and clean the cartridge when the pressure gauge indicates an increase of 7 - 10 psi higher than your clean filter pressure.
    If the pressure increases within a few days and the cartridge is fairly clean, it's time to replace the cartridge.

    On checking the flow, leave the cartridge filter intact. I was describing the manifold assembly. Loosen the unions on the lower part of the manifold. Remove the cell side though, and swing that portion of the manifold away from the base, so that the flow will go through the manifold, upper portion, tri-sensor, down through the cell, but to the ground, rather than back into the manifold base.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    Thanks so much guys! You were a big help. We FINALLY FIGURED IT OUT! The reason it was saying purifier off is because the same plug going into the sensor has a short. Even though we took it out several times before and pushed it back in it still kept blinking. Today we gave it a hard tap and it finally worked! I hope it stays that way. I am waiting now for the color of my pool to get back blue the way it used to. I would assume that may take tow or three days. I have attached a picture for you to see what our pool normally looks like!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    19,000 gallon in-ground, salt water, gunite pool. Aqua Rite chlorine generator, AL-0. Pool installed 2004. We've only owned the house/pool since 11/2009 and never owned a pool before this.

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    polyvue's Avatar
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    Re: Purifier Off - Check flow

    Quote Originally Posted by qsch
    I am waiting now for the color of my pool to get back blue the way it used to. I would assume that may take tow or three days.
    Maybe, but your pool may have no chlorine at all, in which case it would be best to test levels of Free Chlorine (FC) and Combined Chlorine (CC) as well as pH to see where you stand. If FC is lower than your target, add some liquid chlorine (10-12% sodium hypochlorite) or bleach (6% sodium hypochlorite) to give the SWG time to catch up.

    See ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

    By the way... Welcome to the forum!
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
    __
    View of spiral galaxy in Ursa Major NGC6217 - Hubble Telescope 2009

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