WATER SOFTENER ASSEMBLY
think installing our softeners is very easy (if you are somewhat mechanically
inclined and have a little experience doing basic plumbing).
you have an electric water heater we recommend that you turn off the
electricity to the heater while installing softener. Once you are satisfied
with the installation, turn on a few hot and cold-water faucets, and let them
run. Once you are certain that there is no more air in your pipes, then turn
the electricity back on to the water heater.
of your softener is important. It should be in a protected dry, level and
non-freezing area (34-120 degrees F). The 2 tanks should be set close to each
other. The square tank with the black lid is your brine tank (for softener salt
or potassium chloride) and it is the tank that you will have to refill
sometimes, so make it the more accessible of the 2 tanks. Do not put salt in
this tank until you have put the softener into service and have tested the
will need a standard outlet that is not controlled by a switch, which can be 50
feet from your softener.
will need a drain for the backwashing cycles. This should be no longer than 20
feet from the softener. Refer to the Autotrol manual for exceptions and more
details. You will need to purchase this flexible 1/2 i.d. plastic pipe (can be
vinyl, polyethylene polybutylene, etc. and same size will be used in step 8).
This backwashing drain line will be under pressure when the backwash cycle is
working. Make sure the drain line is secured. The drain line will need to drain
into a drain, which should be a minimum of 1 1/2” size, and ideally be below
the top of the head of your softener. Local codes should be adhered to.
Note: Never connect
the drain line directly into a drain. Allow an airgap between the drainline and
waste line to prevent possibility of back- siphonage.
you have determined the exact location of your softener, it is time to fill the
media/mineral tank (taller of the 2) with the furnished media (looks like brown
tiny beads and has a consistency of wet sand).
distributor tube should be in the mineral tank - screen intake would be at the
bottom; open end will be at the top. The open end should be sticking 1
1/4" out of the mineral tank. The screen intake should be resting on the
should be a plug in the open end of the distributor tube. This is to keep any
media from falling into the distributor tube while pouring the media into the mineral
the funnel (provided) into the mineral tank, and begin to put the media into
the mineral tank. Be careful to keep the distributor tube centered as best you
can, while filling. There should only be enough media to fill the tank about ½
to 2/3 full. The mineral tank should not be filled to the top. It is necessary
for the media to have room to move during the backwash cycle. An easy (but
slower) way to fill the mineral tank is to take a small scoop and pour the
media into the funnel. The media beads tend to stick to the funnel so by
filling slowly the media will go into the tank easier.
the filling of the mineral tank is completed, carefully remove the plug from
the distributor tube. Do not pull upwards on the distributor tube.
control valve (head) now must be screwed onto the mineral tank. Be sure the
large O-ring is in place, and lubricated it with some of the grease provided in
the by-pass valve kit box. As you start to screw the control valve onto the
tank, make sure the hole in the center of the control valve fits over the
distributor tube. NO pipe dope should be used on the threads. The control valve
should be hand tightened, snugly, clockwise.
are now ready to install the bypass valve to the control valve. Follow the
instructions in the box. The in and out arrows on the bypass valve should be
pointing the same direction as the in/out arrows on the outside of the control
valve. The arrows are molded into the plastic on both the bypass valve and the
connections to and from softener will now be connected to the bypass 1
1/4"IPS male threads by using the two 1 1/4" Female nuts provided.
Slip one 1 1/4" female nut over one of the flanged tailpieces, so that the
tube is sticking through the nut and the flanged piece is resting on the inside
of the female threaded part of the nut. Use one 1 3/4" o.d. rubber washer
to fit into the female part of the nut on top of the flanged tailpiece and
screw the nut onto the 1 1/4" IPS male threads on the control valve. Do
the same for the other side.
the two tanks you will need to connect the furnished 3/8” O.D. tubing. One end
is to the fitting on the clear air check on the valve, and the other end
attaches to the elbow fitting inside the brine tank. Pass the tubing through
the hole and connect the fitting entirely inside the brine tank. Do not use
the fitting in the brine tank as a “bulkhead” fitting (i.e. fastening the nut
on the outside of the brine tank) – it must be connected entirely inside the
brine tank. Hand tightening is all that should be needed.
tank Overflow. Attach 1/2" i.d. plastic tubing to the fitting from the
brine tank and run to a drain. This drain line will not be under pressure. DO
NOT tie into the backwash drain line! This line should be higher than your
drain line. Overflow drain line must be a separate line from fitting to the
floor-drain, sewer, tub, etc.
follow the instructions in the Autotrol manual for putting the softener into service.
NOTES ON PROGRAMMING:
will need to program three items into your Autotrol computer control: current
time, capacity, and water hardness. You also need to set the salt dial to the
proper setting. Refer to your manual for details.
setting the capacity, you can take advantage of better salt efficiencies by
setting them at a lower capacity than the peak. It will regenerate slightly
more often, but the salt savings (up to 60% less salt) make it worth it. The
chart in the Autotrol manual will show you the options.
One cubic foot
(1.0 ft3) units have a peak capacity of 32,000 grains. We suggest that you program "24" (for 24,000 grains) and the salt setting to 8.5.
One and a half
cubic foot (1.5 ft3) units have a peak capacity of 48,000 grains. We suggest you program
the capacity to “35” and set the
salt setting to 12 (set it at 6
on 460i units –they have the “XS” extra salt cam which doubles the
amount of salt – you need to cut the amount shown in the chart in half).
Two cubic foot
(2.0 ft3) units have a peak capacity of 64,000 grains. We suggest you program the capacity to “40” and set the salt setting to 12 (set it at 6 on 460i
units –they have the “XS” extra salt cam which doubles the amount of salt – you
need to cut the amount shown in the chart in half).
you do not know your hardness number,
call your water department, or send us a water sample. If your water department
gives you the hardness number in milligrams per liter (mg/l) or in parts per
million (ppm) you need to convert it to grains per gallon by dividing the
number by 17.1.
using copper pipe, we recommend using type L copper. Type L is thicker than
type M copper.
Caution: A common
problem for beginners when soldering onto the copper tailpieces is overheating
them, melting the plastic nuts that connect to the bypass valve. We recommend
that you wrap a wet rag around the nuts and tailpieces to keep the heat away.
Also use care when tightening the tailpiece nuts so you do not crack them!
sure you double-check the inlet and outlet arrows on your softener before
that your pipes and water heater contain hard water, so it will take a few days
until your water is 100% soft. Draining your water heater can hasten this. This
also will remove any build up sediment (you are supposed to do this annually).
to now not use as much soap for dishwashing, laundry, etc. etc. No need for it!
Many people report needing to use only about 1/3 to 1/2 as much as they
to check with local code officials and install per local code.
9 to 5 eastern time,
Monday through Friday – 800-669-1376
After hours -