Water Softener Maintenance

Hey, so our water softener stopped working. Time to roll up the sleeves. Let’s start with R&D.

Problem

  • Common signs of hard water shows up in the dish washer, kettle, water taps etc.,.
  • Water softener system is holding water, when it should normally release the salted water into your house (inlet)

R&D

  • Get the make and model name of your water softener
  • Look up the user guide / user manual
  • Check the troubleshooting guide, this will be product specific!
  • Yes, you can google your problem directly. I choose to start with the product, model and guide first. This helps me avoid rookie videos or tips. No insult to those trying to help!

My recipe

After reading the user manual, specifically the troubleshooting section. My problem was well documented. In a nutshell, the venturi maintenance (see screenshot below), I was able to disassemble, identify the extremely dirty parts. Clean it with vinegar (breaks down mineral build up well). Re-assemble and test. Back in business now.

Special tips:

  • be mindful of the parts, they are small, keep them well organized
  • remember the order, or simply have this diagram handy
  • when washing/cleaning the parts, be sure you don’t loose them. I just put the drain plug in and that worked for me.

Washing/Cleaning

This was simple. I placed all the parts (as illustrated in the screenshot below) in a stainless steel bowl. Sprayed them with vinegar. I let that site for 5 minutes. Scrub each part with a old tooth brush. Rinse all parts with plain water.

Reassembly

This is very simple, but you must follow the diagram, get things reassembled in the correct order.

Special tips:

  • use petroleum jelly to lubricate the O-ring seal. This helps the seal live longer but also seal better, i.e. no air intake!
  • use the access petroleum jelly for the venturi nozzle threads. this helps when you need to remove again, makes it less stuck.

Monitoring Containers

I have been having fun monitoring containers. Specifically, low level metrics and simple dashboards.

After a some research, I landed on taking Cadvisor, node-exporter, mysql-exporter, feed that to Prometheus and use Grafana to dashboard your sytem or system under test. If you want to add extra reporting for Windows based host systems then you need to use PPM (Percona). It gives a much richer MySQL metrics not to mention all the rest of the goods. PPM (Percona) a little more work to setup. All open source.

Here are some example reports for Docker Host:

Docker Containers:

Note: On Windows 10, with WSL2 integration.

Here is the sample for PPM:

Note: Requires setup of PPM. I am using it on Windows 10 as it gives richer MySQL metrics.

Here is a click on the MySQL host graph

Here is a MySQL Over Dashboard:

I’ll create a new post with some instructions on how to set it up along with some sample code.