Important information and useful links
The cell life of a pool salt chlorinator depends on the quality of the water chemistry and mostly on the quantity of chlorine produced which is what the percentage button or setting controls (round middle button on Aqua Rite, Aqua Trol, SwimPure, Aqua Natue or the chlorinator percentage in the menu of the Aqua Logic or Pro Logic).
Troubleshooting procedure for Hayward Pro Logic and Hayward Aqua Logic
Procedure how to remove and reinstall Hayward Pro Logic and Hayward Aqua Logic
Advance troubleshooting procedure for Hayward Aqua Rite, Hayward Aqua Trol and Hayward Swim Pure
Procedure how to remove and reinstall Hayward Aqua Rite and Hayward Aqua Trol
Percentage of generation
It is critical to correctly set the percentage of chlorine generation to prevent premature end of you pool cell life and also avoid having too much chlorine in your pool. The most common error is to set the percentage much higher than required which results in a chlorine level often higher than what is required for a Jacuzzi! Having too much chlorine will cause a premature aging of the pool liner, bathing suits and affects bathers (red eye, skin, …). Having too much chlorine will certainly keep your pool water clean but with all those disadvantages.
There is no magic trick to correctly set the generation percentage. The only way is by having a water test kit (15$ tests strips or other kits) and test your water chemistry regularly in the morning because the sun as a variable impact on the chlorine depending of the weather. The required amount of chlorine is normally between 1ppm to 3ppm of chlorine if you maintain your water pH between 7.2 to 7.6 (see next section about pH).
When testing if you obtain a level of chlorine too low, increase the percentage and wait one or two days before re-testing. If the quantity of chlorine is too high the best is to turn off the chlorine generation for 12 hours and re-test. Once you will reach a 1 to 3 ppm level of chlorine put back in function the chlorine generator and decrease the production. Those steps will need to be redone until getting proper result.
With salt pool it is important to add stabilizer (Cyanuric Acid) to protect the chlorine from the sun (when buying stabilized chlorine tablets, they contain this stabilizer which is missing when have a pool salt chlorinator). Adjust the Cyanuric Acid ppm at the beginning of the season and re-test monthly. This will help you keeping the required quantity of chlorine while reducing the percentage of generation.
It is important to remember that the pool salt chlorinator works while the pump if running. If you put the pump on a timer and change the duration the percentage will need to be adjusted accordingly.
The percentage set the number of minutes that the system will generate during a cycle of 2 to 3 hours depending on the machine and firmware version. If you set your percentage to 25% and the cycle duration is 2 hours, the system will produce chlorine for 30 minutes and then ill pause for 90 minutes. The “generating” light will still stay on even if the system is paused. If you press the diagnostic button 5 times to see the instant salt (this is the value staring with a minus sign -) it will then show -0 indicating that the system is in pause, and this is perfectly normal. When the system is producing chlorine, the value starting with the minus – will show you the instant salt in the pool. The default value shown on the display is the average salt content measured for 24 hours. For details, please see the troubleshooting procedure. For details see the troubleshooting video.
A pool salt chlorinator produce chlorine from the salt (Nal) contained in the pool and produce also NaOH which increase the water pH. This is why it is important to adjust the water pH when needed (every 1 to 2 weeks) to keep the water pH between 7.2 and 7.6. A higher pH reduces the efficiency of the Chlorine. This is why a common mistake seen is people increasing the percentage of chlorine generation while the problem is not the free Chlorine content but the pH. And generating more Chlorine means increasing the pH even faster. Keeping you pH within range will help you maximizing your cell life. o adjust the pH simply buy pH minus (pH -) product at your pool storage and add the required quantity depending of your current pH and water quantity. Please always read instructions on the bottle and ask your pool store for help.
Adding chemicals to the pool
Another frequent error is to add chemicals (acids / pH-, salt,…) to the pool while the pool salt chlorinator is running. Before adding any product, it is important to set the generator to OFF (on Aqua Rite, Aqua Trol, SimPure, Aquan Nature) or go to the settings menu and set the percentage to 0 or off for Pro Logic and Aqua Logic. Leave the pump running all the time while having the drain and skimmer intake opened to improve water mixing. Spread evenly the chemical on the pool (do not put them directly in the skimmer). Hayward recommends turning off chlorine generator for 24 hours when adding products. Often 6 to 12 hours are enough for small quantity other than adding product at the beginning of the season.
Adding product to the pool while the system is running will shorten pool cell life and can cause premature failure of your chlorine generator controller.
Inspect cell light flashing and cell cleaning
When the inspect cell light flashes this shows that the system has been producing Chlorine for 500 hours since last inspection. This is not an anomaly detected and not an indication that the cell requires cleaning! This is simply a reminder to proceed with a visual inspection of the cell. Please see instructions it the manual of your Hayward product. Proceed with cleaning only if there is scaling on the plates. Once inspection is done simply keep pressing the diagnostic button for few seconds until light turns off.
Please remember that Hayward clearly says that no cleaning is required unless there is scaling on the plates. Cleaning the cell with the cleaning product at the end or beginning of the season is normally not needed. The product is acid based and can only shorten the cell life if used when not needed. Never use any tool to try to remove scaling as this can damage cell plates.
When winterizing the pool, simply disconnect the cell and keep it inside the hose. NEVER leave a cell in place as if any water goes in the cell, this will crack the cell if freezing and the cell will not be usable anymore (this is important for above ground pool). We also recommend disconnecting the control ox and keep it inside also (the control box is well protected, but this can prevent corrosion). Never leave the control box in the same location of a chlorine bucket (even if it looks sealed).