One of the most common symptoms of a poorly functioning water softener is when the water level in the brine tank is too high. These are some of the potential causes, we’ll start with the most common first:
1. The brine line has become detached from the top of the float – Yes, it does happen, which means that it cannot draw brine, only keep filling the brine tank. To resolve this situation just reattach the brine line.
- A salt bridge has formed in brine tank – this will stop the water from entering and exiting the brine tank. This can usually be removed with hot water but check out our other video specifically on this topic.
- The drain line is clogged or frozen which restricts its ability to draw brine, a kink in the drain line will cause the same problem.
- The drain line flow controlis clogged with debris - the control needs to be cleaned out to make sure the water softener will drain quickly enough to draw brine.
- There is "foreign material" inside of the brine level control valveor float- the valve can be disassembled and cleaned (if there is a valve). I have often seen salt build up at the bottom which impeded its ability to draw brine.
- There is "foreign material" inside the brine line flow control- the flow control can be cleaned. If you have a lot of debris in the brine tank the dirt can get sucked up into the brine line flow control. The hole just needs to be cleaned.
- The injector system is clogged- The injector creates a vacuum to draw the brine from the brine tank. If the injector and the screen become clogged it won't draw the brine out but will keep filling the brine tank. To remedy, you need to remove the injector and screen which can be cleaned by soaking in a descaler like CLR or Iron Out. If you need to clean out the orifice be sure to use a wooden tooth pick so as not to misshape the inside of the injector.
- The water softener timer is not cycling properly- this problem usually means a new circuit board is needed. This becomes obvious when you try to change the settings and they won't change or the led display is blank as though the water softener is unplugged.
- Bad spacer stack or pistons inside the valve - If you remove the brine and drain elbows with the unit in service mode and you see water moving inside the valve after waiting 15 seconds, the spacer stack and pistons need to be replaced.
So start with the first one and if that doesn’t solve the problem work your way through the list.