DIY Chlorinator follow up

tcat

Well-known member
May 30, 2012
761
0
Austin, TX
#1
Not sure whether to start this thread or add to this one, but here goes. My DIY Clorox system (suction from Home Depot pail into pump bucket) has been working great for a couple months. I just replaced my single speed motor with a 2-speed running on low. With my needle valve wide open I'm getting no Clorox flow. I think I need to remove my check valve since the suction probably isn't enough to open it, but if I do when the pump is off I believe Clorox will start moving. My HD bucket is below water level, so water will flow back into the bucket diluting it. If I raise the bucket Clorox will flow into the pump (not good).

I could buy a new timer that would let me run on high for an hour then low for 7 hours, but that's an expense and pain to hook up. Are there any DIY fixes for this problem? (low pressure check valves?) Or is it OK to let Clorox seep into the pump?
 

Bama Rambler

Mod Squad
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Jun 23, 2009
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#2
Can you tell us which check valve you have? They make low cracking pressure check valves, but we need to know what you have in order to know if you already have one.
 

Bama Rambler

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Jun 23, 2009
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#4
That valve requires a little less than 1 psi cracking pressure. You can try one with 1/3rd psi cracking pressure. I'm not sure it will work but it's worth a try. You could also adjust the height of the bucket so that it wouldn't siphon or fill when the pump is off.
 

mas985

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May 3, 2007
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Pleasanton, CA
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#5
Keep in mind that when running on low speed, the vacuum changes by a factor of 4 so the flow rate through the system will be at least half and could be much less depending on the height of the tank relative to the water level. Because your tank is so low, there probably is not enough suction on low speed to draw from the tank. I run on high speed for at least one hour per day and nearly all the draw for the day occurs on high speed and my tank is above water level.
 

tcat

Well-known member
May 30, 2012
761
0
Austin, TX
#6
I may need to buy a timer that will switch from high to low, it's manual now. If I raise the bucket above water level (just set it on the pad), is there a way to keep Clorox from flowing into the basket when off? Right now the check valve keeps it from flowing into the HD bucket.
 

mas985

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May 3, 2007
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#7
One of the advantages of relying on high speed is the suction is much higher so you can shut the valve much more than you would for just low speed. For me at least, this significantly reduces the flow from the bucket over night.

Try raising the bucket to the pad level but adjust the valve so that the correct amount of fluid is drawn over a 24 hr period (both pump on and off). But because the flow rate is so slow, it may take some time to get it exactly right so you might want to experiment with just water in the bucket first.
 

tcat

Well-known member
May 30, 2012
761
0
Austin, TX
#8
Discovering "Low speed" is really low. Once primed, the pump basket barely stays primed (probably .5" of air at top). I also noticed a small air bubble in my check valve, apparently causing a "blockage" in my .25" line from my Clorox bucket. Once I tilted the check valve and watched the air escape, Clorox started flowing. It's very touchy, especially with bucket level 6-8" below pump. If I raise it, Clorox starts flowing much faster. Almost have to have a Stenner pump if running on low... or need an auto switch to run on high for an hour. May take a week to get flow rate correct.

edit: Discovered a crack in my needle valve. Filled it with Teflon sealant and bubbles stopped passing by the check valve and all seems to be "sucking" now. May take a few days to tweak in the right amount, but happy it started working again. May need to buy that $50 needle valve that others are using.