How To Recalibrate the Salt Level on a Hayward Aqua Rite


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Occasionally the salt level on the Hayward Aqua Rite may not match the actual salt level of the pool. If the salt cell is clean but the salt reading is off, the Aqua Rite will need to be recalibrated. The following steps will provide a guide on how to recalibrate a Hayward Aqua Rite.

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Step by Step


Step 1

Before recalibrating, test the water with salt water test strips to determine the correct salt level. If the results from your test strip are not the same as the Aqua Rite, proceed to step 2.

Click Here to View Salt Test Strips

Step 2

With the pump running, move the main switch from "Auto" to "Off" and then back to "Auto". Wait for approximately 10 - 15 seconds for a click inside the panel.

Step 3

Once you hear the click, immediately push the Diagnostics button 5 times. The system will now begin to recalibrate.

Step 4

A number will appear on the display screen and begin to scroll down. Once the number on the screen matches the number from your test strip result, move the the main switch from "Auto" to "Super Chlorinate" and back to "Auto".

Step 5

The Hayward Aqua Rite should now be successfully recalibrated. If the incorrect salt reading continues to be a problem, it may be time to replace the salt cell.

Click Here to View Replacement Aquarite Parts


(1 to 40 of 100)

 Posted: 2/17/2020 

Hi, the countdown only starts at 2800, but test is showing 3600, how do I set the correct number ? Thx

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 2/25/2020 

Give the cell an acid bath to clean the plates and censors of any scale that could be altering the test. If after the soak, the recalibration is not working, follow the troubleshooting steps in this guide to determine if the cell or display board needs replacing: Diagnosing and Troubleshooting Your Hayward Aqua Rite System

 Posted: 9/3/2019 

We just replaced our cell. It is set to t-15. Test strips show reading of 3100 but the reading on the screen is 1700 and the “check salt” and “inspect cell” lights are stating luminated. When I try to re-calibrate the number stays at zero for instant read. It does not ever begin a countdown.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 9/4/2019 

Hello Stacy - Press the diagnostic button on the control box until you see a T#. Does it display T15?

 Posted: 6/17/2019 

My salt cell is not matching the correct reading on the board so no chlorine is being made. However the pool is clean and clear

Anonymous  Posted: 5/27/2019 

If all the above has been done and salt cell is one year old & been cleaned. What should I do if it keeps reading “inspect cell”? It is generating!

 Posted: 7/9/2019 

This is just indicating it’s time to inspect the cell, not an error. Press and hold the diagnostic button for five seconds to turn it off. Paul-25 years exp as a tech.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 5/30/2019 

You may have a faulty cell; which means it warranty time. I would contact the star from whom you purchased the cell to get any order numbers and to let them know of the issue. Then I would give a call to Hayward to start the warranty process.

 Posted: 1/11/2019 

If display reads "cold", does that prevent you from performing the salt re-calibration?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 1/11/2019 

According to Hayward, The Aquarite cannot be correctly recalibrated if the "Cold" message is displayed.

 Posted: 9/11/2018 

866-772-2100 Best advice on this page is the call Hayward directly.Got right to a guy and he was super helpful. My display was reading high salt even though my test strips were showing low salt. Within 2 seconds the the phone told me my board was was trying to read a T3 when I have a t 15 salt cell. When you hit the diagnostic button 2 the T3 display move the button to Super chlorinate and back 2 Auto until you reach correct cell number

 Posted: 7/14/2019 

BINGO, thank you so much for the advice, I work all day and could never call Hayward, but i did what you did, checked my setting and it was set to a t-15 when i have a turbocell 925 aka t-9. I looked in the manual and changed it like you said and BINGO, the reading is even better than what the stupid pool company said a difference of 1400 ppm. Thank you so so much.

 Posted: 9/4/2018 

Hello Kathy - You'll have to switch the system from Metric readings to US Standard. Check out page 8 of the Aquarite Troubleshooting Manual.

 Posted: 9/3/2018 

Did the recalibrate and it worked Salt reading show 2.90 and not 2900. How do I fix this?

 Posted: 8/20/2018 

This is a great post. I am really bad at remembering to pin articles I liked or were helpful but I do have a board started.

 Posted: 7/19/2018 

Hello Nick - A salt cell that needs to be cleaned or replaced will provide an incorrect salt reading. Check out our article titled "Troubleshooting Your Hayward Aqua Rite System". Step 5 will show you the appropriate parameters for a salt cell that is working.

 Posted: 5/25/2018 

What if the salt level reads 0? I turn it off, and back on, press the button five times, it reads 0, even though my salt water test strip reads 3800ppm.

 Posted: 12/5/2017 

DR - If your display is showing the desired output for the default value instead of salt level, you may have a bad display board. I'd suggest calling Hayward at 866-772-2100 to see what they say.

 Posted: 12/3/2017 

Jen ( post on 8/27) my control panel is doing same thing "0" reading for actual and when I try to recalibrate as per the video here the numbers fly by so fast I can't get it set to real test results of 3000. Finally got numbers set but it hasn't changed in 3 weeks even with lots of rain so I don't believe it's reading correctly. How did u fix yours?

 Posted: 12/2/2017 

After cleaning my salt cell I can't get the salt level to stay on the readout. It always reverts back to the desired output. I have tried to use the reseting methods in the manual, "off/auto, etc", but nothing works, it goes back to desired output. I thought the factory default is the salt level. I'm sure I have pushed something to do this.

 Posted: 10/13/2017 

Pat - I don't know the answer to your problem. It may be due to a problem in your main PCB. I'd suggest calling Hayward directly at 866-772-2100. They should be able to provide an answer for you,

 Posted: 10/9/2017 

I tried these steps but they wouldn't work for me. I just installed a new T3 cell (before, my numbers over a few days started plummeting down to 300 and it was an old cell and chlorine had gone to zero). Within 24 hrs of installing new cell, I was reading 3600. Manual testing at PaP and Leslies says I have 3000 and after a week, my chlorine is back up to normal.

I follow the steps, but after pressing 5 times, I see '- 3600' and it just stays there. It never counts down. What's interesting is that if I switch it off, then it does start counting down, but does it so fast, I can't really pick any number.

What are the possible reasons why it will not count down?


 Posted: 10/7/2017 

the reading was 1900 my pool has 3400. light was red check salt and inspect cell.
I follow the instructions to recalibrate and now is working ok.
thanks very much.


InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 10/4/2017 

Dora - See our guides on "How To Troubleshoot a Hayward Aqua Rite" and "How to Correct Low Water Pressure in Your Pool System". Check Step 6 first, clogged impeller. It is a common problem for low water flow.

 Posted: 9/28/2017 

We put a new salt cell. It still not producing chorine and no floow is light up. What does it mean?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 9/28/2017 

RAM - Make sure your displayed cell type matches your newly installed cell type. See our guide on "How To Change the Displayed Cell Size on an Aqua Rite SCG". Then recalibrate your salt level again. If this doesn't work, I'd give Hayward another call.

 Posted: 9/26/2017 

I'm struggling here. Water tests at 3500 ppm salt. Read out on Aqua Rite was 2200. Spoke to Hayward, and I ended up replacing the T Cell 15. Ran through the calibration and all seemed right at 3400. Came back and looked at the Aqua Rite the next morning and it reads 2200. Now it seems I have to recalibrate the unit every morning after it shuts down the night before. Reads 2200 before recalibration. Help!

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 9/21/2017 

Coffeemarkie - This is sometimes an indication that your cell needs to be cleaned. Try cleaning the cell. If that doesn't work, give Hayward a call at 866-772-2100 to see what they suggest.

 Posted: 9/19/2017 

When going calibration steps, the readout will not go below 4200. Using test strip and digital meter, my level is right at 3000. What else can I do?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 8/28/2017 

Jen - Try lifting the Display PCB off of the main PCB and then re-seating it. If that doesn't work, give Hayward a call at 866-772-2100. They may be able to help you further.

 Posted: 8/25/2017 

Mine is saying a zero reading for both the main screen and the instant salt reading. Just had water professionally tested and its actually 3400ppm. We tried doing the recalibration but with the instant reading being zero as well we cant reset. Note: we actually have high chlorine levels right now, so we know our cell is still producing chlorine.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 8/20/2017 

Lrs4vols - Your system is currently set for metric readings. I've accidentally switched into this mode myself. To switch back into US standard units of measurement, see our guide on "How to Change the Units of Measurement on an Aqua Rite SCG".

 Posted: 8/17/2017 

My aquarite originally showed the salt count like 2900 now it shows it as 2.90. Can this be reset??

Anonymous  Posted: 7/17/2017 

I have to post this, I am so pleased with the service organization of this company. It is rare to deal with people these days that go above and beyond to help their customers. The lady at the company headquarters in customer service ( Lisa ?), helped me diagnose a problem, send me the part I needed UPS second day and I'm back in business in a couple of days ! Thank You so much !

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/7/2017 

Tim - Go through the whole process even if you don't hear the click. If that doesn't work, check your salt level, clean or replace your cell, make sure your displayed cell type (eg t-15) is the same as your installed cell type. See Haywards' Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual for more detailed instructions.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/4/2017 

Anonymous (salt level) - Is your salt level outside the upper limit of the system operable salt range? If you, you may have to dump so pool water and partially refill your pool with fresh water. It not, see Hayward's Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual for other suggestions.

 Posted: 7/4/2017 

Hi, I don't hear a click after moving switch to off then to auto. Is anything else needs to be done? Thanks!

Anonymous  Posted: 6/30/2017 

Trying to recalibrate Aqua Rite salt system, but number will not get high enough to match what is on the test strip. Any suggestions?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/30/2017 

Jason - The scrolling should not stop at 3600. Try running the recalibration sequence again. If you haven't cleaned your cell for a while, try cleaning it is an acid solution. Also, take your cell into a pool store and have it tested to see if it needs to be replaced.

 Posted: 6/28/2017 

I did the strip test. It showed the salt level is about 3200ppm. And then I followed your steps to recalibrate the salt level on aqua rite. However, its reading stopped at 3600ppm. So is the reading good and should i proceed the second half of step 4 by moving the main switch?