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Water Softener Installation 4: Clack WS1 Programming

Water Softener Installation 4: Clack WS1 Programming

Are you ready to master the art of programming the Clack WS1 water softener valve, the best on the market? Wondering how the process varies for iron filters or back washing filters? Curious about the differences in programming 3, 4, or 5 button Clack valves? Join us as we explore the fantastic capabilities of the Clack WS1 and optimize your water filtration experience!



To get started, be sure that you have already watched the videos or checked out the blog posts for our Water Softener Installation Series Parts 1, 2 and 3 before programming.

Water Softener Installation 1: Where to Install Aquamaster and Clack Softeners 

Water Softener Installation 2: Clack Plumbing 


Water Softener Installation 3: Drain Connection Options 

Looking for a Clack WS1 Water Softener with the CC valve for your family? 



Programming the Clack Water Softener valve is very straightforward. There are 2 basic Clack WS1 Valve versions that we recommend. Let's explore the differences between them first!


The WS1CC or sometimes called the WS1CI is used for water softeners and air over media iron and sulphur filter. 

The WS1TC is used for back washable filters like carbon filters for removing chlorine from your water or sediment filters for removing dirt from your water. 


You will also see the WS1, which is the original 5-button valve and is still used today, in addition to the WS1EI or 4-button valve which has fewer programming options than the CC valve but still can be used on softeners, iron filter and twin tank systems. You can identify them by the button configuration on the front.

When comparing the WS1 to the WS1CI, the WS1 has more cycles and more control over the amount of time in each cycle.  Up to 6 cycles instead of 9, higher volume range.



  • SET CLOCK: once for hours, again for minutes, and a third time to set the updated time.
  • ARROW UP △ to advance to the next increment or to enter programming.
  • NEXT to advance to the next page in the programming or, when in service, will toggle between current time, current flow rate and capacity remaining based on the settings.
  • ARROW DOWN ▽ to move the value on the screen lower.
  • REGEN to start or schedule a regeneration or move back one page in the programming.



You will see one of 3 displays, pressing NEXT will alternate these displays: Time of Day, Flow Rate or Capacity Remaining.

When the Regeneration begins you will see info about the cycle that is in progress.

If the system has called for a regeneration that will occur at the preset time of regeneration, the words REGEN TODAY will appear on the display. 

When water is being treated (i.e. water is flowing through the system) the word “Softening” or “Filtering” flashes on the display if the meter is connected.



NOTE: What follows next assumes that AUTO is set for regeneration mode in Step 8S, meaning gallons are automatically calculated.

  • Press NEXT and UP simultaneously for 3 seconds.
  • HARDNESS: Set the amount of hardness in grains per gallon (default 20) using the or buttons. The allowable range is from 1 to 150 in 1-grain increments. 
    NOTE: Increase the grains per gallon if soluble iron is present at the rate of 5 gpg for every 1 ppm of iron. This display will show “–nA–” if “FILTER” is selected or if “AUTO” is not selected previously. Press REGEN if you want to exit. 
  • DAYS OVERRIDE: When gallon capacity is set to off, this sets the number of days between regenerations. When gallon capacity is factory set to AUTO or to any number, this sets the maximum number of days between regenerations. If this is set to “OFF”, regeneration initiation is based solely on gallons used.
  • NEXT REGENERATION TIME (HOUR): Set the hour of day for regeneration using or buttons. AM/PM toggles after 12. The default time is 2:00 am (recommended). 
  • TIME OF DAY should only need to be reset after extended power outages or when daylight savings time begins or ends. If an extended power outage occurs, the time of day will flash on and off indicating that the time should be reset. First, check to see if your valve is locked by pressing the NEXT and DOWN ARROW ∇ at the same time.  You should get the next screen but if the next screen does not appear in 5 seconds the lock on the valve is activated. To unlock press , NEXT, ∆, and SET CLOCK in sequence, then press NEXT and BUTTON simultaneously for 3 seconds and it will unlock the valve. You may need to repeat the procedure a couple of times to get it unlocked.


Starting with the CI Valve, let’s check out the Softener System Setup:

First Set the Cycle Sequence

  • Press NEXT and DOWN ARROW () twice then select valve size and whether it is a single or a twin.
  • Press NEXT to select: Alt off if this is a single valve system on either one or two tanks.
  • Press NEXT to select “dpoff” as we do not want the valve to be controlled by an outside signal connected to the DP switch on the circuit board.
  • Press NEXT to choose what cycles you want and in what order. For downflow regeneration you will start with a backwash, dn brine, backwash unless you want to limit water waste, you can eliminate this cycle and go right into a rinse, then rinse and fill. You still need to have the last cycle actually end.


System Setup

  • Press NEXT and DOWN ARROW () — for a softener, it should be set to SOFTENING; if used as an iron or sulphur filter, then change this to FILTER. Press NEXT and when you get to 1, Backwash default is 8 minutes. If you want to limit water usage you can back it off by a couple of minutes, or if you have significant sediment you can increase it by a couple of minutes… however, remember that you may encounter other problems with the system's performance if you make changes.
  • NEXT to brine, typically 60 minutes.
  • NEXT, second backwash, typically 8 minutes but if you are tight on water you can eliminate or back off.
  • NEXT Rinse, to finish getting rid of the brine and settle the media back down.
  • NEXT lbs fill. Usually 10 lbs for every 30,000 grains (1 cubic foot) of capacity. So for a 60,000 grain softener, it would be 20 lbs.
  • NEXT Capacity. Typically 80% of the grains. So for a 30,000 grain capacity softener, you would set this aT 24,000 (30,000 x 80/100).  
  • NEXT Regen – For a Metered water softener this would be set to Auto.  For a one cubic foot Tannin filter where you would want the system to regenerate after 500 gallons of water usage or 3 days (whichever comes first), you would set this to 500.
  • NEXT Regen – Set to normal.  The system automatically calculates the reserve capacity and regenerates when gallons fall below reserve capacity or days override, whichever comes first. 
  • NEXT LBS Remaining – Set to off.  This can be programmed but I won’t go into it as I find it is not worth the aggravation.


Installer Settings

  • Press NEXT and UP ∆ – Your compensated hardness number.  Water hardness plus 2 gpg plus, if you have iron, also add 5 gpg for every 1 ppm of iron.
  • NEXT Regen Day Override – Typically 14 days for a softener without iron, but 3 days with iron and or sulphur or 3 days for Tannins.
  • NEXT – Set Regen time, hours and minutes.  Be sure that you set different regen times when you have multiple pieces of equipment.  You do not want them regenerating at the same time.


There you have it — everything you need to know to program your Clack WS1 water softener like a pro!

Prefer a visual step-by-step? Follow along with my recorded livestream video where I show you all of my techniques, tips and tricks to properly program the great Clack WS1 water filtration valve right now.