REsetting Iron Removal System

midnightsmum (Z4, ON)September 13, 2010

So, it was here when I bought the house 2 1/2 years ago. There was no info on it with the rest of the manuals on the house. It did however have a sticker with the name of the installer on it. (No brand name!) It is mechanical/electrical. Here are a couple of pics - I've left them large in hopes the detail will help:

Front view with the cover off.

Top view.

I have heard it backwash a couple of times over the last 2 1/2 years, but not in a while. The 1st time it was about 3:00 am, and it sounded like a 747 landing in the house. I have followed the instructions to reset the time. It is not clear 'which' knob you should turn to manually restart. Usually I can find info online to help me with these mechanical beasties, but no luck this time. Oh yeah, and the co. that installed it no longer exists!!

Help~~~tia. Nancy.

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aliceinwonderland_id

Looks like a Fleck 2510. I'm posting a link to the manual, which will probably be better than trying to explain it myself.

Here is a link that might be useful: Fleck 2510 manual

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 3:30PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Alice - awesome!! I got the timing gear to do something. I will monitor it further, but no backwash at this point. So, it is a water softener??!! Hummm, no brine tank.
The reason I started all of this is because my water pressure has dropped, without explanation. No leaks. So I thought about this gizmo, and in the troubleshooting it indeed says the cause could be iron buildup in the line to the conditioner, iron buildup in the conditioner or the inlet of control plugged due to foreign material broken loose from pipes by recent work done on the plumbing system. I haven't had any work done on the plumbing. One of the solutions is to increase the frequency of regeneration.
Do you have more info. about these things? I really can't afford a plumber right now....

tia, Nancy.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 4:45PM
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justalurker

Doesn't necessarily have to be a softener with a Fleck 2510 control valve and if there's no brine tank it is NOT a softener.

Likely a back-washing filter or acid neutralizer.

Looks like a leak waiting to happen at the connections of the supply and return lines to the Noryl yoke.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 5:30PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Lurker, if you mean the water drops everywhere, that is because I opened something on the out-line. I'm not sure what it is....sorry, I'm a little slow. I think the yoke is where the 2 bypass valves are, yes?

Nancy.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 5:38PM
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justalurker

The two valves are the bypass which is between the yoke and the 2510 control valve.

The yoke is where the two (beige?) pipes connect to the black threaded yoke and the leak is the off color corrosion at those two connections.

That corrosion, or buildup, is the first indicator of a leak.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 6:46PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Ah-Ha!! Gotcha. The beige is brass. So, if I turn off the bypass valves, and then the water input, how drenched will I be trying to disconnect and reconnect at those 2 points? If there is heavy iron build-up,I can try to snake it out a bit. I wonder if this will help the pressure problem....

Nancy.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 7:02PM
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justalurker

Nancy,

There is NOTHING you can do with a snake in that thing. Most likely the media in the tank is fouled and it may be so clumped together that it can't be removed from the tank.

There is no magic bullet for you.

You need to start over from square one... are you on a well or a municipal water system?

On a well you need a comprehensive water test. If on a water system the water department can give you a general idea of the water conditions.

Once you know the water conditions we can advise you what hardware you need and you can go shopping for a local water treatment pro to give you a free estimate.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 8:11PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Well, now I'm depressed. lol. I'm on a well, so will have to have a comprehensive test later this fall. What you say makes sense - one of the troubleshooting points said that if the pressure at the tank was 20 or less, it would not backwash. I now suspect that is what has happened. In the short term, is there a way to bypass this thing to get my pressure back up?

Thanks.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 1:04PM
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justalurker

In your TOP VIEW picture the two white rectangles are valves that turn to bypass the appliance.

Right now, they are both pointing to the control valve. That is the in service position.

Turn both white rectangles 90 degrees so they point at each other. That is the bypass position. In that position no service water will enter the appliance.

Living on a well requires some learning and maintenance and responsibility because you don't just want the water nice you have to make the water SAFE.

Get a water test from an independent lab. An independent lab has no agenda and won't be trying to sell you water treatment equipment. Go to http://www.epa.gov/safewater/labs/index.html to locate a certified lab near you. This is a MUST DO because without it everything is a guess. A quickie water test from Sears or a water softener company won't be as accurate (and possibly not as competent) as from a certified independent lab.

Hit the Yellow Pages and call at least three local water treatment pros. Make sure you call at least one of the big dogs like Kinetico or Culligan for comparison and at least a couple independent pros. DON'T TELL THEM YOU HAD YOUR WATER TESTED.

Give each an opportunity to offer suggestions and provide you with a quote to meet your water treatment needs. IGNORE ANY THAT DON'T TEST YOUR WATER THEMSELVES as they can't speak intelligently to water treatment without knowing what needs to be treated.

Ask lots of questions. Softening the entire house or just the water heater (IMO a bad idea)? Warranty, parts & labor or just parts, how long and on exactly what? Install, permits required, licensed plumber? Routine maintenance and costs? Do they stock parts? Response time for emergency (water leak) calls? If they don't explain things to your satisfaction that is a good indicator of how you'll be treated after the sale.

After they've gone use your water test to compare with theirs. Are all your treatment needs being addressed?

Ask your neighbors if they have any water treatment experience. They might tell you who's good or who to avoid.

Come back here and post the specific recommendations and hardware components with the costs and we'll give you our opinions.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 1:53PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Thanks Lurker. OK, only a couple of more dumb questions: Is it a bad idea to bypass the system? Will it screw more stuff up? Now, by a water test, you mean one that will test the levels of minerals etc., not just contaminants, yes?
btw, I have lived on wells most of my life, they just didn't have fancy schmancy stuff on them. I really appreciate all of your suggestions and advice.

Nancy.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 2:17PM
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aliceinwonderland_id

If the system is not doing anything and hasn't been for some time, bypassing it will be no different. Are you noticing iron staining?

Water test should include: Ca and Mg hardness, particulate iron, dissolved iron, manganese, sulfates, nitrates, TDS, pH, alkalinity, coliform bacteria, VOC, turbidity

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 3:12PM
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justalurker

Fancy, schmancy is not the point. Safe water is safe water and unknown water is not known to be safe until tested.

Bypassing the appliance will no do it any more harm that has already been done. Most likely it is a door stop by now anyway.

Should test well water for bacteria, nitrates, hardness, iron, manganese, magnesium, copper, sodium, arsenic for a start.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 3:16PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Alice - I didn't see your reply. I have not seen any staining, or increased hardness. What I am experiencing is lowered water pressure. In looking for clues, I realized it had been a while since thing had made any noise - ie. backwashed. Having now bypassed it, the water is marginally stronger. I drained the pressure tank last weekend, with no joy. Tomorrow, I may try to up the pressure switch. Whoever installed the in-well pump put no gauge. Maybe this is normal for an in-well pump?? Anyway, maybe this will help!! It is all cause and effect. I see the effect - the cause needs detective work. The well is tested once a year, and is always 0/0.

Thanks all, Nancy.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 4:23PM
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justalurker

Alice,

If the appliance is fouled then it will reduce her water pressure and that is what she's complaining about. If bypassing that appliance improves the pressure then at least one cause is identified.

That still won't tell us what ibn her water needs to be treated.

Nancy,

"The well is tested once a year, and is always 0/0"

Tested for what and what is 0/0?

If you're going to bypass the appliance pull the AC cord. no need for power if it's bypassed.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 5:14PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Plug has been pulled! 0/0 is Ontario talk for 0 coliforms, 0 e-coli in the water. I know I have iron and manganese. I put a new toilet in after I moved in cause the old one was gross from the iron slime. Actually, even with the 'filter', I used a brita to keep my iron intake down. No anemia here!!

Thanks, Nancy.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 6:11PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

OK, 4th ring of hell!! I plugged the 'filter' back in and un-bypassed it. I was getting a bit of odour and taste of sulphur. So, down into the pump room to increase the pump pressure. I turned both nut springs down, equally - nothing. I did find a pressure gauge on the back of the pressure tank - why to installers put them in such inconvenient places?? Anyways, I turned the small nut back up, equal to the turn down I had done. On the thread of the large spring, you can see 1/4" of new thread - lower pressure. Is it possible I am a parallel universe, and everything in my house is backwards???

Nancy.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2010 at 5:52PM
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justalurker

It's more probable that fiddling around without understanding what you have, what it does, if it works or why not is understandably confusing you.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2010 at 8:43PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

About 1 am. Yes I was up - don't ask!!

So, I now think that is not the problem. Water pressure is about the same as it has been. So, next thing to fiddle with!! I guess I will have another go at resetting the water pressure. If that does not work, what else could it be? The air valve (like a tire valve?) spurts water when I poke it - should it do that? I am again thinking that it might be the pressure tank.....

Nancy.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 3:04PM
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