How To Recalibrate the Salt Level on a Pentair Intellichlor

WRITTEN BY:  Inyo Pools

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Occasionally the salt indicator on the Pentair Intellichlor will not match the actual salt level of the pool. If this is the case, the salt level on the cell will need to be recalibrated. The following steps will provide a guide on how to recalibrate a Pentair Intellichlor. Note: This guide is only intended for versions 1.9 and below. Newer versions cannnot be recalibrated.

Step by Step


Step 1

If the Intellichlor has been in operation for a few weeks, remove and acid clean the salt cell before field recalibrating. This will give the most accurate starting point.

Step 2

Manually test the salt level with salt test strips or an electronic salt tester. If the salt level is in the proper range of 3000-4200, proceed to step 3. If not, adjust salt level to the proper parameters before recalibrating.

Step 3

With the pump running, verify the "Flow" light on the cell is green. This indicates good water flow through the cell.

Step 4

Press and hold the "More" button for 3 seconds to enter system status mode. All the lights will scroll across the panel, and then go dark. Only the "Power", "Cell", "Life", and "Low" lights will be lit.

Step 5

After a few moments, the "Good", "Add", and "Low" salt lights will begin to scroll, indicating the salt level is being read. It may take up to one minute to read the salt.

Step 6

The salt scrolling will stop and one of the salt lights will be displayed. The "Sanitizer Output 20%" light will turn on to indicate changes are now allowed. Press the "More" button to cycle through each salt level, and then press the "Less" button to choose and save the display as the new salt level. The "PWR", "Cell", "Life", and "Flow" lights will flash 4 times, then the mode exits to normal.

Step 7

The unit is now recalibrated to the salt level of the pool. The display will now be normal, showing the output percentage, flow status, etc. The field calibrate mode will exit in 5 seconds if no buttons are pressed.


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Inyopools  Posted: 07/25/2016 19:49 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

WEB - If you haven't cleaned your cell within the year, try cleaning it to see if that gives you more consistent results. It that doesn't work, give Pentair a call at 800-831-7133 and talk to one of their tech reps.

WEB  Posted: 07/24/2016 14:27 PM 

I have an IntelliChlor 20. My "Salt Level" is a steady red; I have no "Status" lights and my "Flow" light is green. My salt level is within the acceptable range. I tried the salt level recalibration, the flow lights and others blinked and return to the same status. Any answers to this? thanks

Inyopools  Posted: 06/12/2016 12:00 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Mark $ - Take a water sample to your local pool store and have them test the salt level to verify your SCG reading. Have them also check your chemical readings including phosphate. Phosphate can diminish your chlorine level. If your chlorine level is very low, add a bag of shock treatment. SCG sometimes has difficulty making up the difference initially. If you are still having problems, call Pentair IntelliChlor technical support at 800-831-7133.

Mark $  Posted: 06/10/2016 6:49 AM 

My IC20 recently quit working(5 yrs old) and I replaced with a new one. I have a 11,000 gallon pool. The chlorine output is no where near has efficient as my old one. At 90 degrees at 100% I get barely enough chlorine to be in the good range. Any ideas? How do I know what version I have?

Inyopools  Posted: 02/11/2016 12:14 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

MARIA - You would expect the free chlorine level to go up after a shock treatment but that shouldn't affect the salt level. Rain should have diluted the pool's salt content bringing the salt level down. If an independent test shows that your salt level is still high, you may want to drain the pool 6" and add fresh water. Or just watch the salt level and see if it doesn't drop naturally to 3500 in 3-4 weeks.

MARIA  Posted: 02/09/2016 10:43 AM 

we are residing in the US VI and using the for our 20000 gallon pool since 2/2013 the IntelliChlor Generator.Recently I was not able to bring up the free clorine level. since we had a lot of rain I added acid and Breakout chock, let the pool run more hrs. dayly + in add. 24hr straight as instructed. the result the green flashing light came on. when I had the water tested last week it showed the salt level was 4300. Surprise since I thought the salt creates the clorin? I was told to clean all the equipment, let some water out and add 23 lb SB, next day 1 qt acid; 31lb calcium hardness increaser ; 4lb clorine stabilizer/cyanuric acid, which I did yesterday. tonight I have to add 1 lb extra shock breakout. Meanwhile the pool is running however the cell is disconnected.
Next water test in about 2 days.
Any other advise

Inyopools  Posted: 08/15/2015 11:43 AM  Inyo Product Specialist

GeneL - I would take a sample of your pool water into a local pool store to double check the salt level and to make sure all of your pool is chemically balanced. Then if your pool is balanced and the salt is below 4200 ppm, try recalibrating your unit per the instructions in this guide. Note: the newer units "do not require calibration" so cannot be recalibrated. A newer unit can be identified by looking at the label. The yellow LED for "Check Salt" has been replaced with a single line "IDEAL SALT 3400 ppm". From your description, it sounds like you have an older unit. If, after recalibration, you still have the same problem, check your cell to make sure it is free of deposits. A dirty cell can affect salt readings.

GeneL  Posted: 08/13/2015 13:40 PM 

I have an Intellichor IC20, I don't know what the version is but it was installed in January 2013. Question: is there a error range for salt readings as registered by the Green/Green flashing/Yellow/Red lights? For example, if it is flashing Green, could the ACTUAL salt level be, say at 3800 and not the trigger point of 4200 or above? The reason i ask: my indicator is flashing green, but my pool technician, using a new, calibrated, electronic tester, gets a reading of 3900. Thanks !

brenro  Posted: 08/04/2015 16:13 PM 

This might work for the older style cells but not the new ones. For one thing there are only two lights for salt now and once the system does a self check it returns to normal operation without an opportunity to adjust anything.

Inyopools  Posted: 07/19/2015 11:24 AM  Inyo Product Specialist

Edahl - Yes, I would unplug the black power line to the cell before cleaning. Here is a link to the Pentair Intellichlor Owner's Manual. Page 27 shows you how to disconnect the line. I'm not sure what you mean by "Wh does 4 green line stay on and sometime 3 green dots". Page 7 of the Owner's Manual starts the explanation of the LED lights. Page 33 starts "Troubleshooting".

Edahl  Posted: 07/18/2015 18:54 PM 

Do you have to unplug black line before cleaning system. Where to unplug. Wh does 4 green line stay on and sometime 3 green dots