So you must not have done maintenance on the heater and flushed it out from the drain now and again? That should have gotten rid of most of the beads.Good luck. Those can be evil, I have a house that the softner failed 7 years ago and the airators still gets plugged up once a year. I have done both the compressed air and flushing trick. When I changed the water heater last month it was about 1/4 full.
Not having serviced many softeners , but installing several. I may not be correct, but the only time I had an issue like this the tube was cracked, not something that self clears.
Service or replace.
I've been thinking of getting into the softener business. It's big out here, but I don't have that much experience with them. I've installed many, repaid a few, but that's it. A license isn't required here and it would add diversity to my services, but I don't like selling a service I have little experience in.
I've been told I'm to honest to own a business, but my customers seem to like my honesty and advice that comes from experience and in turn never question the bill no matter the amount.
My market would be mostly residential, there's one locally owned company here who is truly good, and doesn't rape their customers. But I've seen $8K+ systems in homes, iron curtain... I know there's money there.
Post an intro. Actually an informative post without a link drop. Thank youThis was typed up awhile back for a different post. I thought I would post it here
In a water softener there are two "strainer baskets" that are in place to keep your Resin Beads from escaping from your mineral tank. These are know as the Top and Bottom Distributors.
When the "Top Distributor" fails resin will slowly but surely flow down your drain. Depletion of resin is slow because the top distributor only deflects the resin during upward flow cycles (e.g. Backwash) so if a fin or two are broken/missing only minor amounts of resin will float up and out during the 5-20 minute backwash.
When the "Bottom Distributor" (aka Intake Manifold) fails the resin will flow like sand in a hour glass. Instead of the resin flowing down the drain, it flows with your "treated water" throughout your house. Sometimes you will have gravel underbedding that leads the charge into your pipes when the rupture occurs. It doesn't matter if the resin beads are alone or gravel is involed, when a rupture occurs, it will require hours of effort and dedication to purge your houses interior plumbing. Heres a good step by step to follow:
Bypass the water softener.
Drain and flush the hot water heater. Turn off power and cold water supply to the heater. If you are using a gas heater, turn the temperature gauge to the lowest setting. Attach a garden hose to the drain valve at the bottom of the heater. Open the pressure valve to start draining water. Catch water in a bucket periodically to check that it's clear. If all the water has drained from the heater and resin beads still remain, open the cold water to let more water drain into the heater. Keep flushing until all the beads are gone.
Flush hot and cold water faucets. Remove the airrators from all the faucets. Place a colander under the faucet to catch any resin beads. Turn on the cold first at full blast and let it run for a couple of minutes. Then turn on the hot water and let it run for a couple of minutes. Toss out the resin beads you catch.
Run the water-using appliances to flush of beads. Run the dishwasher, washing machine and other water-using appliances on empty. If the appliances are clogged after running or start to over fill, turn them off. Detach their water hoses and check for clogs. Flush hoses to clear of beads. Check the connections and remove any beads clogging them. Reattach and run the appliances again to flush. This is one of the most important but also the most overlooked and/or skipped steps. Anything hooked up to a water supply line that has a solinoid valve needs to be addressed asap and with caution.
At this point you have all the resin flushed out, but you also have a massive headache and intense frustration for your water softener. The good news is you do not ever have to deal with this situation again. Before you put your new or repaired water softener in service, install a inline "T" strainer mesh filter.
Here some of the common causes of Resin Ruptures/Distributor Failure...
1 ) Too much water pressure ( over 80 psi ).
2 ) Not backwashing ( regenerating ) often enough. System should regenerate
at least once every 7 days.
I've run into "metered" or "demand" systems with just one or two people and
it takes them 2 - 3 weeks to "require" a regeneration.
This is too long for the resin beads to sit idle and could allow to become "packed" down and not "fluffed up".
3 ) Highly Chlorinated water can break the resin beads down into small fragments.
These fragments get stuck in the fine slots of the bottom distributor. This
results in there being less "holes" for the water to flow through, thus
causing the pressure through the remaining holes or slots to become very
high. Eventually the pressure of the water becomes too high and the plastic
4) The resin is plugged up from pellet salt glue residue or a bacterial
5 ) Too high of flow rates can be a problem. Residential size softeners (
tank diameters between 8 - 10 inches ) are made for flow rates of less than
8 gpm. And a normal home will peak around 5 - 6 gpm while in house demand is high. If the demand it greater than this, the system
needs to have a larger tank diameter, and a gravel under bedding should be used.
Personally I'm a big fan of gravel underbedding is all softeners. But that a different topic.