How to Build a Cleaning Tube for a Salt Chlorine Generator Cell


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This guide shows you how to construct a PVC tube to simplify the process of cleaning your pool's salt chlorine generation cell. This tube holds your cell and muriatic acid while cleaning the cell. A thanks goes out to one of our customers for the suggestion.

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Step by Step


Step 1

BUY PVC PARTS - To construct the cell you will need three parts: a 4" diameter piece of PVC pipe (24" was the shortest length I could buy); a 4" diameter PVC pipe cap with threaded end; and a 4" diameter threated plug. As a cheaper alternative you could cap the end of the pipe with a rounded slip on cap but you would have to lean the pipe against something to keep it upright. I was looking for something flat that would stand on its own.

Step 2

MEASURE 9" PIPE LENGTH - Mark off 9" on the pipe or the length of your cell up to the cell's head. You want to be able to immerse all the plates without immersing the head of the cell. You can make this a little longer than your cell and adjust the immersion length by filling the bottom with small stones. Then mark a line around the outside of the pipe to help guide your cut.

Step 3

CUT PIPE TO LENGTH - Cut the pipe to about 9" Try to make this cut as square as possible. Use a sharp hacksaw blade.

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Step 4

FILE BURRS - File off the inside and outside burrs. A file with a rounded side and a flat side work best.

Step 5

APPLY PRIMER - If your sawed off end isn't quite square, glue that end to the cap so you have a nice finished end at the top of your tube. Gluing is a two-step process. Coat both surfaces to be joined with purple primer to chemically clean them. Be careful with this primer. It will permanently stain anything.

Step 6

APPLY GLUE - After the primer has dried for a minute, coat both surfaces with the glue solvent up to the collar. Make sure to cover the surfaces completely. Do not glue excessively.

Step 7

ASSEMBLE PARTS - Before the glue dries, quickly push the glued pipe into the glued cap all the way down to the collar. Twist 1/4 turn to spread glue evenly.

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Step 8

WRAP TAPE AROUND THREADS - Wrap 3 or 4 layers of plumber's tape around the threads the disk.

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Step 9

SCREW THE THREADED DISC INTO THE CAP - Screw the disc as far into the cap as you can. There are two sides to this disc. Make sure the side with the single center slot is outside. Hand tightened should be sufficient.

Step 10

TEST CLEANING TUBE - Fill the cleaning tube with water to make sure it does not leak before you fill it with an acid solution.

Step 11

FILL THE TUBE WITH AN ACID MIXTURE - Use a mixture of five parts water to one part muriatic acid. To prevent injury, always add the acid to the water, never water to acid and wear gloves and eye protection.

Step 12

REMOVE THE CELL FROM ITS ASSEMBLY - See our guide on How To Clean a Compupool Salt Generation Cell

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Step 13

IMMERSE THE CELL - Place the cell into the acid solution up to the cell head. DO NOT IMMERSE THE HEAD. If you place two strips of wood under the head, they will keep the head out of the acid solution. After a few minutes, remove the cell and hose it off until the plates are clean. Check that the plates are not loose.

Step 14

If you still have buildup on the plates, use a tooth brush to remove it (after you have hosed off the acid).

Step 15

REPLACE THE CELL - Refer to the guide above for instructions.

Step 16

CLEAN OUT TUBE - Dump the cleaning solution into your pool and rinse out the cleaning tube with water.

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InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 8/29/2016 

cell cleaning tube - The 9" long pipe holds about 10 cups of fluid, so about 8.5 cups of water and 1.5 cups of acid.

Anonymous  Posted: 8/27/2016 

Ok i get the 5-1 mixture but for thoses who have made this cleaning tube how much water to aid did you actually use. Please save me the time of figuring this out. Any help would be appreciated

 Posted: 7/28/2014 

This is a good idea...BUT, if you want a REALLY easy alternative, simply cover one end of your salt cel with Cling Wrap or something similar, use a good tight rubber band around it, and stand it up inside a 5 gallon bucket - just in case you didn;t put the wrap/band on tight enough. Works great, costs almost NOTHING, and keeps the muriatic/water combination INSIDE the salt cel.

 Posted: 5/4/2013 

Great idea and easy. I just made 2 of them. One for me and one for a friend who just bought a compupool swcg.