How To Troubleshoot a Hayward Aqua Rite

WRITTEN BY:  Inyo Pools

  4.07 out of 5 stars on 14 ratings
(Click on a star to add your rating)

As with any automatic salt chlorine generator, tune ups are needed from time to time. Troubleshooting a Hayward Aqua Rite can be quick and simple. By following the steps listed below, the Aqua Rite can successfully be restored.


Step by Step


Step 1

"Power" LED not on. Check to make sure either 120VAC or 240VAC input power is connected to the proper screw terminals at the Aqua Rite control. Verify input voltage with a voltmeter. If there is input power, the fuse may have blown. The Aqua Rite is protected by a 20 amp mini ATO fuse located on the circuit board above the cell connector.

Step 2

"Generating" LED flashing. The temperature of the pool water is too high or low to operate. You can override this by switching the main switch to SUPER CHLORINATE. The Aqua Rite will run at maximum output for the remainder of the current pump cycle or 24 hours, whichever comes first.

Step 3

"No Flow" LED illuminated. The Hayward Aqua Rite has sensed a no flow condition and has stopped generating chlorine. Check that the flow switch is plugged into the connector on the bottom of the control unit and that the wire is not cut or damaged. Make sure you have at least 12" of straight pipe before the flow switch. If there is adequate flow and the LED is still on, check that the arrows on the flow switch (on top of hex) are pointing in the direction of flow.

Step 4

"Check Salt" LED illuminated or flashing. Check salt level in pool/spa. If the salt level is low, add salt according to the chart in the owner's manual. Before adding large quantities of salt, it is advisable to have your salt level tested by a professional or with test strips.

Step 5

"High Salt" LED illuminated. With a test kit, check the salt level in pool/spa. If salt level is too high, lower salt level by draining some of the pool water out of the pool and replace with fresh water. Continue until the salt concentration is at recommended levels.

Step 6

"Inspect Cell" LED flashing. Inspect and clean cell according to directions in the owner's manual. When done, press the "diagnostic" button for 3 seconds to stop the "Inspect Cell" LED flashing.

Step 7

"Inspect Cell" LED illuminated. Remove and inspect the cell for scale. If the cell is scaled, follow the directions in the owner's manual for cell cleaning. If the pool has the proper amount of salt and the "Inspect Cell" LED is still illuminated, the cell may be worn and need replacement.

Step 8

"-PCB-" displayed and all 4 red/yellow LED's illuminated. A possible Printed Circuit Board fault has been detected. Call 1-866-772-2100 for service.

Step 9

Causes for little or no chlorine residual. The Hayward Aqua Rite switch is in the "Off" position. The Desired Output % adjustement setting is too low. The stabilizer (cyanuric acid) level is low. The filter pump time is too short (8 hours is average). The salt level is too high or too low (ideal 3200 ppm). The water temperature is warm and this causes a higher demand for chlorine. The water temperature is too low (below 50ºF) and this causes the Aqua Rite to stop generating. There is excessive scaling on the cell. Note: Any one of these problems will cause a little or no chlorine residual.

Step 10

Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual - For further diagnostics information and test, here's a link to Haywards' Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual


(1 to 40 of 507)

Inyopools  Posted: 03/09/2018 10:41 AM  Inyo Product Specialist

George - The LED light coming on and then off in the first seconds of operation may indicate that the inrush current limiter on your PCB board is damaged. Look for a flat disc in the upper right hand corner of your PCB. If there are scorch marks around its leads or if the disc crumbles when touched, it will need to be replaced. Amazon sells a replacement kit for this part. If this is not the problems, check Hayward's Troubleshooting guide referenced in the last step of this guide.

George  Posted: 03/05/2018 10:41 AM 

I just had my pool remodeled. The salt generator was turned off for about a week during the renovation. I turned it back on today after adding salt to the pool and now the Power and Generating light come on for a short period of time and shut off and don't come back on. The panel still works and no other warning lights are on. I pulled the flow switch and it looks clean and I cleaned the salt cell.

Anonymous  Posted: 02/25/2018 11:18 AM 

BOTCWC1 - I don't know what's happening here. Is the cell and connecting piping vibrating. Does this vibration transmit into the cord that causes the control unit to vibrate? I don't know of anything in the control unit that would vibrate. If the piping is vibrating, try putting a support under the pipe.

BOTCWC1  Posted: 02/22/2018 13:03 PM 

my Hayward aqurite salt system is vibrating. replaced the board and the transformer. its Still Vibrating. When I unplug the cell it stops vibrating. Do I need to replace the cell?

Inyopools  Posted: 10/22/2017 23:54 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

CGD - If you haven't cleaned your salt cell in the last 6 months, I would try that first. Then, look at some of the diagnostics tests listed in the Diagnostics Manual referenced in Step 10.

CGD  Posted: 10/18/2017 20:35 PM 

I have been noticing low chlorine levels in the pool when i test with a test strip, so i've been turning the dial up higher and higher. It's at 80% now, but still not producing adequate chlorine. I was curious about what I would learn if i pressed the little diagnostic button; one of the readouts says 17% or 18%. I looked at your helpful troubleshooting video, and all the other things you said to check look OK. What do you suggest as my next step to get the chlorinator to produce adequate chlorine in the pool?

Inyopools  Posted: 09/14/2017 13:08 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

reez - Unfortunately, we do not have information on that error. Give Hayward a call at 866-772-2100. They should have an answer for you.

reez  Posted: 09/09/2017 13:13 PM 

my chlorinator reading is stuck on 700. 2 days ago it was on 600 and so I added some salt to see if it would change - went to 700 and is now stuck on that reading. I have tried to recalibrate but reading will not go above 700. Any ideas or is it time for a new cell?

Inyopools  Posted: 09/07/2017 11:51 AM  Inyo Product Specialist

20x40hellhole - See response to Scott below. You have a similar issue.

Inyopools  Posted: 09/07/2017 11:47 AM  Inyo Product Specialist

Scott - Your issue is similar characteristics that many people have reported for a failed thermistor (aka inrush current limiter). It's the flat disc in the upper corner of the main PCB. Read earlier comments on this subject. Before you replace it, however, check out the other diagnostics tests in page 21 of the Diagnostics Manual referenced in Step 10 of this guide.

20x40hellhole  Posted: 09/06/2017 15:47 PM 

Power light comes on for few seconds then generating light for a few seconds, then they both go off. It is not making Chlorine. Help! checked all electrical. What should I try?

Scott  Posted: 09/04/2017 23:28 PM 

My Hayward control panel GLX-PCB-RJ-CUL only has the LCD screen working. If I unplug power the green generating lights work for about 30 seconds to 5 min then go out. I cannot figure out what the issue is.

Inyopools  Posted: 09/04/2017 11:02 AM  Inyo Product Specialist

Jim - See our guide on "How to Change the Units of Measurement on an Aqua Rite SCG" to switch back from metric to US standard.

Jim  Posted: 09/01/2017 11:51 AM 

It appears my display has switched to metric

Inyopools  Posted: 08/25/2017 13:10 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Misty - I don't know what "hoe" means. I'm guessing "hot". If that's the case, you may have to clean your cell. The temperature sensor in the cell may be covered with calcium. Otherwise, give Hayward a call at 866-772-2100. They should be able to diagnose your issue.

Misty  Posted: 08/23/2017 10:14 AM 

Aqua system flashing hoe? What's that mean Please and thanks

Inyopools  Posted: 08/21/2017 11:07 AM  Inyo Product Specialist

Anonymous (AR Salt Chlorinator) - These are the same characteristics that many people have reported for a failed thermistor (aka inrush current limiter). Before you replace it, however, check out the other diagnostics tests in page 21 of the Diagnostics Manual referenced in Step 10 of this guide.

Inyopools  Posted: 08/21/2017 10:57 AM  Inyo Product Specialist

Walter - See the link to Hayward’s Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual in step 10 of this guide. Page 21 of that manual has troubleshooting steps for resolving no LEDs/Display. If this doesn't resolve your issue, give Hayward a call at 866-772-2100.

Inyopools  Posted: 08/20/2017 13:11 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Paul M. - Unfortunately, we do not have any information either on this type of error. I'd suggest giving Hayward a call at 866-772-2100. Their tech reps should be able to solve this issue.

Anonymous  Posted: 08/19/2017 14:20 PM 

My Aqua rite salt chlorination stopped working. No lights on so I checked the breaker, turned it on and off then tried it again. The power light came on and when the no-flow light went on the generating light came on for about 15 sec then both power and generating lights went off. After a couple attempts I started my research I was going to replace the thermistor but when I took the board out everything looks perfect. No burned marks no crumbling or cracking anywhere. Should I still try to replace the thermistor? Any ideas or suggestions would be appreciated.

Walter  Posted: 08/19/2017 11:36 AM 

I don't have any power to the generator at all. The outlet has power, I tested that. I also checked the fuse for the generator. It was not burnt. No lights and no display on at all. Any idea what to do next?

Paul M.  Posted: 08/16/2017 11:28 AM 

Hi. Quick question. I have a Hayward Swimpure Plus system and and I had the system down for a couple months to work on the pool. I fired it back up and it worked fine initially but a week later, I have a yellow solid power light and a yellow solid generating light. Can't seem to find this configuration in any troubleshooting guide. Still shows salt content and the T-15 cell is about two years old. I've replaced the boards in the control box so I do know how to work on it. Thought I'd ask before I tore into it. Advise greatly appreciated.

Inyopools  Posted: 08/15/2017 12:55 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Steve - Unfortunately, we have not seen this problem before. Please call Hayward at 866-772-2100. One of their service reps should be able to solve this for you.

Steve  Posted: 08/14/2017 8:21 AM 

My Chlorine us dangerously high and the unit is generating continuously no matter where I set the dial. Any suggestions?

Inyopools  Posted: 07/27/2017 17:52 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Steveth - Please give Hayward a call on this issue at 866-772-2100. They should have the answer.

Steveh  Posted: 07/26/2017 8:10 AM 

What is the difference between a Rev "A" and rev "C" board

Inyopools  Posted: 07/24/2017 15:02 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

cpsnow - Your description is very similar to others. See "Inyopools" response to "Schmidyt" (and PhilS) six comments down from this one.

Inyopools  Posted: 07/24/2017 13:08 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Glen - I'd suggest looking at Haywards' Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual, but it sounds like you already have. At this point, I'd suggest calling Hayward and walking through this with one of their service reps. Their number is 866-722-2100.

Inyopools  Posted: 07/24/2017 11:04 AM  Inyo Product Specialist

Chuck - There are two sets of arrows on the flow switch, one on the pipe and one on the sensor itself. Make sure the sensor arrows are pointed in the right direction. See Step 6 in our guide on "How to Replace an Aqua Rite Flow Switch". Then make sure the plug on the flow switch cable is all the way in. Then check the water flow. See our guide on "How to Correct Low Water Pressure in Your Pool System". Start with Step 6, Clogged Impeller.

cpsnow  Posted: 07/23/2017 10:37 AM 

I have a Goldline AquaRite system that was installed in 2006 and a couple days ago the LEDs stopped coming on. The LCD still comes on showing 3100 and there is a faint electrical smell inside the box.

What is the best way to diagnose this? Is is worth it to replace parts or is it more prudent to replace the whole controller?


Glen  Posted: 07/22/2017 17:45 PM 

I just installed a new board and T cell 9 in a Hayward Aqua Rite system 6 yrs old. Salt level is 3000. Checked voltage and amps in both polarities. Voltage gives two different readings as soon as panel is switched from auto to off and back to auto. When same procedure is done with amps, the reading goes to zero when the polarity is changed which the Hayward manual says a new board is needed. However after waiting about 30-40 seconds, I hear a click and the reading goes up to a level near the first reading. I did this 5 times and the reverse polarity readings on amps were always 0.05 to 0.10 amps higher on average. Is the correct reading really 0.00 when the polarity is first changed or is the correct reading obtained after waiting for some 30-40 seconds after the polarity is changed? I can't find anywhere that you should wait to watch the reading go from zero to a normal reading after changing polarities. I changed the old board in accordance with the Hayward diagnostic chart that says you have a bad board if you get a zero reading when changing the amp polarity but am getting the same thing with a new board and cell. Help. I can't tell if my system is generating or not. Pool water is balanced but I keep having to manually add chlorine.

Chuck  Posted: 07/21/2017 18:15 PM 

I just had put in a brand new Aquarite AQR9 system. Cell is set up correctly, wires just fine and plugged in correctly, correct power hooked up, correct length (12+ inches) in front of flow tee, arrows pointing in right direction, plenty of speed on the pump, BUT the "NO FLOW" light shines on! Any insight here? Thank you.

Inyopools  Posted: 07/21/2017 12:37 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Schmidty - This sounds like a problem with your main PCB. A number of people have seen this or something similar. The solution is often tied to replacing the flat disk "inrush current limiter" at the top upper right corner of your main PCB. A recent comment from PhilS suggested:
"If you are still getting a salt reading but no indicator lights your "inrush current limiter" may have gone out. mine was a model "as32 2r025" got it from Amazon for around $6. my soldering iron wasn't good enough so i just cut it out leaving enough existing wire to crimp on the replacement. hope this helps you and anyone else with this problem.
P.S if it falls apart in your hand then this is more than likely the issue."

Anonymous  Posted: 07/20/2017 13:45 PM 

Doug - Step 10 of this guide provides a link to Haywards' Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual. See page seven of this guide for "High Salt LED On". If that doesn't help solve your issue, check the other diagnostic suggestions.

Schmidty  Posted: 07/18/2017 18:56 PM 

Turn system on, no flow flashes for a short period of 30 seconds. Then generating light turns on for about 10 seconds and then goes off. The digital readings are still on display.. what could be wrong??

Inyopools  Posted: 07/18/2017 18:11 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Robert - When you replaced your t-cell, did you reset the displayed cell to match the installed cell? Also, the last step in this guide referenced a diagnostics manual for the Aqua Rite SCG that might help you further.

Doug  Posted: 07/18/2017 13:16 PM 

We have a 5 month old salt cell and just started having the problem of not generating and the high salt light is steady red. I've taken a water sample to our pool store and the salt level is right on, acid was a bit low which is normal, and almost no chlorine. I've cleaned the cell but cannot solve this,problem. Suggestions?

Robert  Posted: 07/17/2017 8:03 AM 

I recently replaced my t-cell and now my aqua rite says salt level is Hi. I had chlorine level checked and it is not producing chlorine. Is high salt level the problem or does the aqua rite panel need replacing??

Inyopools  Posted: 07/10/2017 14:26 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Matt - I recently added a link to the bottom of this guide for Haywards' Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual. Hopefully, some of the diagnostics tests can help you isolate your issue.

Inyopools  Posted: 07/09/2017 15:00 PM  Inyo Product Specialist

Kevin - I just added a link to the bottom of this guide for Haywards' Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual. It may help you isolate your issue to either the cell or the main PC board.