How to Install a Hayward Aqua Rite Salt Chlorine Generator


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This guide provides a step-by-step procedure for installing a Hayward Aqua Rite Salt Chlorine Generator. Note: This guide is intended to give you a visual reference to supplement the Hayward owner's manual, not replace it. Make sure you read and understand your owner's manual before installing your unit.

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Step by Step


Step 1

Balance the pool water before installing the Aqua Rite Salt Generator. Note: If the pool does not have new water, add one quart of metal remover and one quart of a non-copper based algaecide to the pool.

Click Here to Find Your New Aquarite Generator or Replacement Salt Cell 

Step 2

Locate an area on the wall near the equipment for the Hayward Aqua Rite Control. The control must be mounted a minimum of 5' horizontal distance (or more, if local codes require) from the pool/spa. Locate the control box close to the pump timer. Keep in mind that the 15' cable of the salt cell, which will be installed on the return line, must be able to reach the control box. Note: It is important not to block the four sides of the control. DO NOT mount the Aqua Rite inside a panel or a tight enclosed area.

Step 3

Mark the locations for the four mounting screws. The control is designed to mount vertically on a flat surface with the knockouts facing downward.

Step 4

Drill four holes where the mounting screws will be installed. Note: We used a special 3/16" carbide drill bit to drill into the concrete.

Step 5

Install screws (or other hardware appropriate for the mounting surface) through the two mounting holes at the bottom and the top of the Aqua Rite Salt Generator. Note: We used 1/4" x 1-1/4" hex head concrete anchors. Hex head anchors are recommended for better traction when installing into concrete.

Step 6

Your next step is to wire the power cord from the Hayward Aqua Rite panel to the pool timer. When wiring, be sure to follow local and NEC/CEC electrical codes. CONTACT A PROFESSIONAL ELECTRICTIAN IF YOU ARE UNCOMFORTABLE WORKING WITH POWER. Incorrect wiring can cause dangerous shocks and may void your warranty.

Click Here to Find Your New Aquarite Generator or Replacement Salt Cell

Step 7

Before wiring you will have to check the output power level at the timer going to your pump. It will be either 120VAC or 240VAC. In preparation for measuring your power, TURN OFF THE POWER TO THE TIMER BOX. There should be a circuit breaker before the timer box where the power can be turned off.

Step 8

WITH POWER OFF, remove the cover over the screw connectors inside the timer box.

Step 9

This picture shows the wiring inside the timer box. Three wires come in from the left of the box. Two are labeled INPUT and one GROUND. There are 5 terminals in the timer box. The left most is GROUND. The other four are labeled 1 to 4. The INPUT wires are connected to 1 and 3. The OUTPUT wires to 2 and 4. The OUTPUT wires are currently wired to the pump. Note: The timer pictured is an Intermatic 220v T104 timer. Please refer to your timer's manual for guidance.

Step 10

To measure your voltage level, TURN ON POWER back on at circuit breaker. Set your digital multimeter to 300 VAC and place the meter's probes on the OUTPUT terminals, 2 and 4. It does not matter which probe is placed on which terminal. Be careful not to let the probes short out between two adjacent terminals. The meter should read close to 240VAC if your power is 240VAC - 120VAC if the timer is using 120VAC.

Step 11

TURN OFF POWER at the breaker and replace the cover

Click Here to Find Your New Aquarite Generator or Replacement Salt Cell

Step 12

Now that the voltage has been confirmed, the next step will be wire the Aqua Rite control box to the timer. Open the Aqua Rite control box and remove the two screws that secure the blue cover panel. Remove the blue cover panel.

Step 13

In order to determine the correct wiring connection, refer to the label on the inside door of the Aqua Rite control box. The Aqua Rite is shipped from the factory with the configuration jumpers in the 240V position. Note: If using 120V, move the jumpers to the configuration listed on the wiring diagram.

Step 14

Remove one of the knockouts located near the wiring connections of the Aqua Rite control box.

Step 15

Thread a 1/2" mpt terminal adapter into the knockout of the control box.

Step 16

Feed the cable through the terminal adapter and into the Aqua Rite control box. Note: We used 12-3 AWG cable for this 220v installation.

Click Here to Find Your New Aquarite Generator or Replacement Salt Cell

Step 17

Connect the individual lines to the correct terminals. For 220v, connect the ground line to the green screw, the black to terminal one, and the white to terminal four. For 110, the jumpers most be moved and then the wires can be connected in the same order.

Step 18

Reinstall the blue cover panel onto the Aqua Rite control box.

Step 19

Measure the distance from the Hayward Aqua Rite Salt Generator control box to the timer. Cut a piece of 1/2" electrical conduit to the correct distance.

Step 20

Feed the cable from the Aqua Rite control box through 1/2" conduit. Push the one end of the conduit into the terminal adapter on the control box.

Step 21

Your next step is to wire the power cord from the control box to the timer box as shown in the picture to the left. Feed the cable through the adapter terminal. For Intermatic T104 timers, connect the white wire to terminal 2, black to terminal 4, and the ground line to the ground terminal. Note: For different 220v timers or 110v timers, please refer to your timer's manual for wiring instructions.

Click Here to Find Your New Aquarite Generator or Replacement Salt Cell

Step 22

Ground the Hayward Aqua Rite control box. Using an 8AWG conductor, connect the grounding lug on the right side of the Del Eclipse to an appropriate earth contact. Failure to adequately bond your power unit can lead to severe electrical shocks. Note: This bonding wire is installed in addition to your normal grounding process (green wire). You need both per code.

Step 23

Connect the opposite end of the control box ground line to the external ground line of the pump. The external ground line is located on top of the motor. The external ground line for the motor may have a protective green sleeve. Remove an inch of the green sleeve so that the copper line is exposed. The two lines must be touching in order for the system to be properly grounded. Note: We used a copper split bolt to ensure a solid connection between the two lines.

Step 24

The next steps will illustrate how to install the Aqua Rite salt cell and flow switch on the return line. They will need to be installed after (downstream) all the pool equipment (filter, heater, etc.).

Step 25

For most installations, we recommend installing the flow switch after (downstream) of the cell. The flow switch can be installed before or after the cell but there must be 12" of straight pipe before the flow switch. The cell counts as 12" of straight pipe if installed directly before the flow switch.

Step 26

Connect the salt cell and flow switch by gluing a short piece of schedule 40 pipe between the two. Make sure the arrow of the flow switch is pointing in the direction of the flow of the water. Gluing is a two step process. First apply a thin but even coat of purple primer on each surface to be joined: the outside of the pipe and the inside of the union/flow switch. After the primer has dried, apply a thin even coat of glue to both surfaces. Immediately push the pipe all the way into the union/flow switch and twist 1/4 turn to spread the glue. Hold the pipe in place for 30 seconds until the glue sets. Note: 2" pvc will not require a reducer but 1.5" will require a reducer on the flow switch and salt cell.

Click Here to Find Your New Aquarite Generator or Replacement Salt Cell

Step 27

Measure the total length of the salt cell and flow switch. With that measurement, find the correct spot in the return line (after the equipment) and cut out the properly measured section of pvc pipe. Keep in mind that the section of pipe removed should be approximately 2-1/2" shorter than the length of the switch and cell. This takes into consideration that some of the pvc plumbing will slip into the flow switch and salt cell.

Step 28

Glue the salt cell and flow switch into the section of return line that was removed in Step 27.

Step 29

Plug the cable from the flow switch into the jack located at the bottom of the Hayward Aqua Rite control box.

Step 30

Turn on the power to the timer box.

Step 31

This step does not apply to customers installing a T-Cell-15. The Aqua Rite Salt Generator comes from the factory preset for a T-Cell-15. If installing a T-Cell-3 or T-Cell-9, the configuration of the control box MUST BE changed in order to be able to control the correct cell. To do this, place the power switch in the “Auto” position and then press the diagnostic button eight times from the default (salt display) screen. You should see “t-15” displayed. Slide the power switch between the “Auto” and "Super Chlorinate” positions until your particular cell’s number is displayed, then press the diagnostic button one more time to return to the salt display screen. Your Aqua Rite is now configured correctly to operate your particular cell.

Click Here to Find Your New Aquarite Generator or Replacement Salt Cell

Step 32

Plug the cable from the salt cell into the Hayward Aqua Rite control box.

Step 33

The next steps will involve adding the salt to the pool. It is important to use only sodium chloride (NaCl) salt that is greater than 99% pure. This is common food quality salt or water softener salt and is usually available in 40-80 pound bags. DO NOT use rock salt, salt with yellow prussiate of soda, salt with anti-caking additives, or iodized salt.

Step 34

Using a salt water test strip, measure the current salt level of your pool. For the Hayward Aqua Rite generators, the ideal level is 2700-3400 ppm (3200 ppm is optimal). If the level is low, determine the number of gallons in your pool and add salt according to the Salt Table located in the owner's manual. For example, if your pool has 15,000 gallons of water and your current salt level is 0, you need to add 427 lbs of salt.

Step 35

Before adding the salt, move the power switch on the Aqua Rite control box to the "Off" position. Keep this in the "Off" position until the salt is completely dissolved. This may take 24 hours.

Step 36

While the pump is running, walk around the pool and pour in the salt. Brush the salt around to speed up the dissolving process. Run the pump for 24 hours with the suction coming from the main drain (use pool vac if there is no main drain) to allow salt to evenly disperse. Note: For new plaster pools, wait 10-14 days before adding salt. This allows the plaster to cure.

Click Here to Find Your New Aquarite Generator or Replacement Salt Cell

Step 37

After the salt has dissolved and the salt level is between 2700-3400 ppm, move the power switch on the Aqua Rite control box to the "Auto" position.

Step 38

Adjust the "Desired Output %" dial to 50%. Test the chlorine level every few days and adjust the dial up or down accordingly. It usually takes 2-3 adjustments to find the ideal setting for your pool/spa and after that, it should only take minor, infrequent adjustments.

Step 39

A green light next to "Power" and "Generating" will illuminate if everything is working correctly. The installation is now complete. Enjoy your new Hayward Aqua Rite salt chlorine generator!

Click Here to Find Your New Aquarite Generator or Replacement Salt Cell 


(1 to 40 of 54)

 Posted: 5/13/2022 

Dies it matter which direction the salt cell is installed? Is there a flow direction?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 5/25/2022 

The preferred cell orientation is for the cord side of the cell to be on the outflow that returns to the pool.

 Posted: 4/10/2022 

You mention timer and that the screen system.should be on/off with the pump. My pump runs all the time and is turned off via a switch when cleaning the filter. Can I wire the scg to that same switch rather than use a timer?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 4/14/2022 

Yes, you can, as long as the breaker it is on can handle the extra load.

 Posted: 4/25/2019 

Does it matter in which direction you install the salt water chlorine generator? Mine is installed with the connecting cable at the inlet side of the unit.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 4/30/2019 

Hello Jerry - It doesn't matter which direction you place the cell. The direction of the flow switch is important. There are arrows on the sensor that should be facing in the direction of the flow of water.

 Posted: 12/3/2017 

I have a new Hayward Pool system (TriStar VS 950, Swim Clear 4030 and 500,00 btu heater) installed on a new 11,000 gal pool. I was told bigger is better so I purchased the T15 system from Amazon. My question is The Tcell is 2" and my system is 2 1/2". I don't want to use a reducer for fear the pressure and volume will be reduced to the Spa. Do I have to install diverter valves? Any recommendations on what everyone else id doing?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 9/23/2017 

Idiot_wind - Yes, the flow switch can be installed vertically. The operational design of your flow switch is the same as the one shown in this guide. See Page 10, Figs 2 and 3 of the Aqua Rite ECG owner's manual.

 Posted: 9/22/2017 

I am about to install a SwimPure Plus ECG and I have variable speed pump (3 speeds) which runs 24 X 7. My question is for the installation of the flow switch, can it be installed vertically? In the instructions I see it mentioned that the cell can be installed vertically but all diagrams depict the flow switch being installed horizontally but I never see that statement in print.
Thank you


 Posted: 7/16/2017 

Only one thing I see that may be incorrect and that is the "belly" or power side of the T-Cell MUST be downward to prevent air entrapment and generate chlorine effectively.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/22/2017 

Doug - 1) You need to connect this to an external timer, preferably one that is connected to your pump so they both go on and off at the same time. The timer is not built into the control panel. 2) I believe you can add a GFCI breaker into the breaker box. 3) Depends on the amperage required by the motor. The breaker has to handle the sum of the two amperages. Check with a knowledgeable salesman at your local h/w store.

 Posted: 6/20/2017 

I bought an AQR15 through Amazon - there is no Timer included nor any receptacle plug/wiring.
three questions:
1) do I need the timer or is it built into the control panel?
2) Can I wire the control panel directly to the breaker panel or do I need to buy a receptacle plug for the GFCI?
3) I have a 1.5 HP pump. Can I use the same 20 Amp GFCI receptacle for both the pump and the AQR15?


InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/5/2017 

Preston - I would say this installation is a moderate effort. It involves electrical work and pipe cutting and gluing. If you are comfortable with these efforts and understand this guide, you should be able to do this. Depending on where you put the control box, much of the electrical may already be in place with the old system. For a more complete explanation of cutting and gluing PVC pipe, see our guide on "How To Replace a Pool Pump With An Energy Efficient Pool Pump".

 Posted: 6/4/2017 

I just purchased a Hayward AquaRite Salt Chlorinator system and I changing from a Zodiac LM-2-24 system. I would like to change this system myself, with my current system it's already set-up to automatically turn on when the pump kicks in. How difficult is this change from one system to another one? Any help/direction is greatly appreciated.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 10/1/2016 

jon - If the timer is still there, you can wire the motor to the line side (terminals 1 & 3 on Intermatic T104). This way it always has power. You can then wire the SCG to the load side (terminals 2 & 4) and set the trippers so that the SCG only turns on when the pump is set to turn on. Not a perfect solution, because the timings might get out of sync. If that happens and the pump shut off with the SCG still on, the "no flow" sensor on the SCG would shut the SCG off.

 Posted: 9/24/2016 

How do i wire the system with a variable speed motor that bypasses the original timer?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 5/30/2016 

Rob60 – Here is a link to a Cleaning Stand for Turbo Cells.

 Posted: 5/24/2016 

Where can I get the cap/stand to close the end of the salt generator for cleaning it with acid and water mixture. Thanks

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 5/23/2016 

Ritchie - Yes, adding an Aqua Rite SCG into your system does not add significant resistance to water flow. Your pump should be fine.

 Posted: 5/22/2016 

Considering converting from chlorine to salt. Is my Hayward Super Pump (AO Smith Model C48J3N131B1 with Hayward Pump Model # SP2605X7) compatible with this change?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 4/19/2016 

steve - Here is a link to the Aqua Rite Diagnostics Manual. First check that the displayed cell type is the same as the installed cell type. Then check your current and voltage readings.

 Posted: 4/16/2016 

After tapping the face of my 18 month old blue essence unit the lights came on. I am getting a power light a generating light and a flashing red check salt light. Had water tested twice in past two weeks and low chlorine was identified. Added chlorine. I acid cleaned the cell and think it was installed correctly (no way to know for sure) but I don't think the unit is producing chlorine. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 8/3/2015 

Gordie S. - The cell does not have to go in the same way as the flow arrow. In fact Hayward recommends that you reverse the cell after you have cleaned it to prolong the life of the cell. What is important on the flow switch is for it to be installed with the flow arrow on top of the switch pointing to the pool returns. See our guide on "How to Replace an Aqua Rite Flow Switch" to see where the flow arrow is on the switch. The arrow on the fitting is there for a reminder. If it is worn off, mark an arrow on the fitting pointing to the returns.

 Posted: 8/1/2015 

Does it matter if the cell is installed in the same dieRection as the flow arro??? while cleaning my cell I'm not sure if it went back I the same as it came out.

Also, does the unit have to be installed with the flow arrow towards the pool return?? My flow direction arrow has worn off there any way to make sure the unit is installed in the correct flow position....????? Is there a way to determine in and out with no arrow????

Thanks very much


InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/22/2015 

michouette - The salt cell can be installed at ground level. It does not have to be higher than or the same level as the pump.

 Posted: 7/22/2015 

Is it ok to have the salt cell installed at Ground level or should it be higher than the pump?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/19/2015 

2-pumps - I see no reason why the salt cell could not be installed on either pump system. The pool water will eventually go through both pump systems. Just make sure to install the salt cell as the last unit before returning to the pool.

Anonymous  Posted: 7/18/2015 

I have 2 goes through the filter, and out to the side jets....the other does NOT go through the filter, and goes out to the waterfall and floor jets. Does it matter which pump I install the salt cell?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 9/1/2014 

lights out - It sounds like a faulty PC Board but check with Hayward/Goldline. Their number is 866-772-2100.

Anonymous  Posted: 8/31/2014 

All the lights are out. There is power, because the readout works and my pool has chlorine. The panel is less than 2 years old.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/3/2014 

Two T-cell 15s - I do not think the control box can be wired to recognize two T-cell 15s at the same time, but you should call Hayward/Goldline at 866-772-2100 to see if they have a different answer.

Anonymous  Posted: 7/3/2014 

I have 2 t-cell 15 salt cells install (side by side configuration) in a new pool build. my pool (residential) is over 50,000 gals which is why we have 2 salt cells. the prologic panel only has a "slot"/jack for 1 salt cell "plug". how do I get both cells to be recognized by the prologic?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 5/23/2014 

Bob - The hot wire can go to either 1 or 4. The jumpers have to be wired as shown in step 13 of this guide.

 Posted: 5/22/2014 

After converting to 120v. Where does the hot wire go?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 12/28/2013 

Acold - Please call Hayward/Goldline at 908 351-5400 X7961.They should be able to provide this information.

 Posted: 12/22/2013 

My Swimpure plus cell needed cleaning. Upon reinstall the check cell light was still flashing. I did a reset and accidentally changed the t-xx number for the cell from whatever it originally was. Is there a way to determine if I have a 3,9 or 15 cell? No notation is on the cell itself and I'm not the original owner so don't have the paperwork from the install. Thanks

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 12/16/2013 

Newby – Your SCG should not be on if it doesn’t have sufficient water flow so you do need an operation flow switch. Here’s our link to the switch: Goldline / AquaLogic Flow Switch 15' Cable (No Tee) (GLX-FLO-RP). Note: this flow switch is also used on the AquaRite systems. Check our comment in the FAQs section on this page for directions on how to test the current switch to make sure it is bad before you replace it. You do not have to replace the “T” fixture. The flow switch screws out of the top of the “T” for replacement.

 Posted: 12/14/2013 

My Aqua Rite SCG system has been working well for years (although I did have to replace the cell 10 months ago). 3 weeks ago the wall panel lights for both Check Cell and No Flow came on. It seemed that I had excellent flow by observing the pool jets but I felt perhaps the cell (which had not been inspected for 6 months) might have a lot of junk in it. I removed and cleaned the cell and did the mild acid treatment and then reinstalled it. The Check Cell light went out but the No Flow light was still on. I called support and was told that I might have a bad flow meter and to check I could use an old telephone cord with the wires connected to each other. If using this wire made the No FLow light go out I needed a new meter...well the light did go out.
Question: How important is the flow meter for cell functioning? If it is absolutely necessary, do I have to cut out the old and reinstall a new length of PVC? Where do I get a new flow meter.


InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 9/30/2013 

KristenMWClark - The "Generating" LED should go off when you switch to "OFF". You might try replacing the switch. In the meantime turn you "Desired Output %" to 1.

 Posted: 9/29/2013 

My chlorine has been high, so I switched the chlorinator to "Off" about 4 weeks ago. My chlorine is still high. I noticed the "Generating" light is still illuminated even though my box is OFF. Is it still generating and that's why my chlorine hasn't come down yet? Or is it always illuminated even while it's not generating chlorine? Thanks for the help!