Hayward Chlorinators: Install & Maintain

hayward-chlorinators-cl220-cl220The Hayward Chlorinator is the most recognized pool chlorine feeder on the market.

Hayward chlorinators have been around since the 70’s, in the same design, and one could say it’s America’s favorite pool chlorinator.

If you use Trichlor tablets or sticks, the safest, easiest and most accurate way to slow-dissolve them is with a chlorine feeder. A pool floater can get stuck or flip over, and putting any type of pool chemical into the skimmer is a big no-no.

Aboveground or inground, all pools that use chlorine tablets, should also use a tablet feeder, like the Hayward Chlorinator.

Hayward Chlorinator Installation

The CL-200 model (CL-100 for above ground pools) can be plumbed in-line, which means that the feeder is glued in place on the return pipe, after the filter and any heater, last on the line.

The CL-220 (or CL-110) are for off-line installation. The feeder base is screwed to the floor, and hoses carry water in and out of the feeder, pushing chlorine through injection fittings in the pipes.

In-Line Hayward Chlorinator Install

Hayward CL100/CL200 are designed for permanent installation to PVC pipe or hose. Both feeders have 1.5″ female threads to connect to a hose adapter (above ground pools), or a 1.5″ male adapter. You can also buy the optional Hayward SxS Unions, connectors to match 1.5″ PVC pipe.

In-line chlorinators must be installed after the filter and after any heater. They should be installed at ground level to prevent back flow, and if you have a heater, a one-way check valve should be installed between the heater and the feeder, to prevent damage from corrosive chlorine gas.

  1. Shut off pump and open air bleeder to drain pipes.
  2. Locate section of pipe to cut, measure twice and cut, twice.
  3. Thread 1.5″ adapters (2) fully into feeder, sealing with Teflon tape.
  4. Use PVC Primer and Glue to connect pipes to adapters.chlorine-tablets-and-chlorinator
  5. Fill with America’s Favorite Chlorine!

Off-Line Hayward Chlorinator Install

If you don’t have the 9″ of clear horizontal pipe, close to the ground available to hard plumb the CL200 chlorinator, you can install an Off-Line CL-220 model. No plumbing involved, but you do need a power drill and a 3/8″ drill bit for the injection fittings.

Securing a Hayward chlorinator into a concrete floor with anchors and screws is recommended, to hold the body stationary when you remove the lid. An alternate method is to fasten the feeder to a hefty piece of pressure treated lumber that is pegged into the pad.

  1. Secure the CL220 feeder to the pad or hefty length of lumber.
  2. Mark the Inlet and Outlet locations for the hose fittings.
  3. Drill 3/8″ hole at marked locations, clean holes of any burrs.
  4. Install hose fitting/gasket and clamp firmly to pipe.chlorine-tablets-and-chlorinator
  5. Connect feed hoses, cutting off excessive excess.
  6. Fill with slow dissolving Trichlor tablets or sticks!

 Hayward Chlorinator Maintenance

The Hayward Chlorinator is a workhorse and doesn’t need too much attention to keep plugging away. Here’s some items that may need attention from time to time:

Clogged Chlorinator: A cheap chlorine tablet can leave behind a crusty, goopy residue. Do not use any solvents or chemicals to clean, which can cause a reaction. Use only water to flush out the feeder. For Off-Line models, a new Check Valve & Inlet Fitting (CLX220EA) is in order every few years, to keep water flowing properly. Also replaceable is the internal standpipe or feeder pipe (CLX200H).

hayward-chlorinator-capStuck Chlorinator Lid: The Hayward Chlorinator has a unique internal o-ring, made of Viton, a chlorine resistant rubber. It can grip very tightly, and if the base is not anchored tightly, be almost impossible to remove. There is an aftermarket lid wrench available, or removal tool.

Lid O-ring Replacement: The Viton Lid O-ring mentioned above? It needs replacement if it becomes distended or pinched. Remove the logo cap to get at the screw to separate the inner top and o-ring from the outer top. Lube your chlorinator lid o-ring (CLX200K) regularly to keep smooth operation.

hayward-chlorinator-accessory-pak-clx220gaHose Replacement: Although the black poly hoses used for the Off-Line CL-220 model are UV resistant, they don’t last forever, especially in strong sunlight or freezing winters. Fortunately, you can buy an 8′ replacement chlorinator tubing (CLX220J), or the Accessory Pak (CLX220GA) for hose, clamp, nuts and fittings.

Winterizing a Hayward Chlorinator: For safety’s sake, please remove all tablets and rinse the inside with clean water thoroughly. Do not replace the lid for storage, chlorine residue may continue to gas off. Store open in a cool, dry area during periods of non-use, or just remove the drain plug and leave it connected for winter.

With regular maintenance and a few replacement parts every few years, your Hayward Chlorinator can give a lifetime of service!

Davy Merino
InTheSwim Blog Editor



Hayward Chlorinators: Install & Maintain — 21 Comments

  1. I bought the Hayward CL200 in line. I installed today. It seems that it doesn’t fill with water, I took the lid off let the pump fill the Hayward up and replaced the lid. I did notice that the water does drain rather quickly from the Hayward when I take the lid off, is that normal?

    Also I’ve noticed a lot of noise coming from the Hayward, not sure if that’s normal? Sounds like the water swirling inside, but it’s louder then my pump, is that normal? I thought you shouldn’t hear the water swirling inside at all…personally it just seems to me that it’s just not filling with water, even after letting it fill with the lid off.

    I just want to know if it’s normal to hear anything coming from the Hayward, or is it supposed to be dead silent? Also is it possible that I got a dud from the factory?

    • Hi John, it is normal that the chlorinator drains, and some swirling noise also is normal. A few questions for you – you did install it in the direction of the water flow arrow? And is installed after all other equipment, last on the line, at or near ground level? And is the filter pressure the same? An inline chlorinator may raise filter pressure by 1 psi or maybe 2 psi normally, but if pressure is much higher than before, there is too much restriction. A third question would be, now that a day has passed, are the tablets dissolving and maintaining the chlorine level? If pressure is normal, and chlorine is going into the water, you’re likely ok. Probably not a dud unit, never heard of that, but there could be some obstruction – check that the standpipe is clear on the side, and on the opposite side, that the small hole is not clogged.

  2. I cannot find what number I should set my chlorinator on. Is it in the middle at 5 or lower to 3? What do the numbers mean anyway? I am not sure and have not really gotten a great answer from my local pool store. There certainly is nothing in the instructions that came with the unit. Any help would be appreciated.

    • HI, great question. When you turn the dial up, it increases water flow into the unit, which ultimately sends more chlorine out of the unit. The way to dial-in a tablet feeder is to use a set number of tablets, whatever you use, 6 or 12, whatever but consistent. Find the setting that produces the chlorine level in the pool that you want for everyday chlorine levels. Let’s say that a dial setting of 5 produces a consistent 1.5 ppm in the pool, as verified by your test kit or strips. That’s where you want to set it. However, as the tablets dwindle, from 6 or 9 large tablets, to 5 or 6 small tablets, the output will be less, and the chlorine level will drop somewhat in the pool, so you may need to turn it up a notch after the first week or so, to maintain consistency, say from 5 to 7 (on a scale of 10). And, when weather turns very hot, and the water warms, a higher setting will be needed, because your pool needs more chlorine. Same thing with high pH or low stabilizer levels, also call for a higher setting, to maintain a constant and consistent chlorine level, as verified, by your testing.

  3. With the Hayward auto chemical feeder, CL200, will I need a check valve between the sand filter and chemical feeder? I do not have a heater to worry about. Can i install feeder without the check valve?

  4. Do you have to have a check valve after the sand tank on an off line feeder (cl-110abg) if you do not have a heater?

    • Hi Robin, no need for a check valve if you don’t have a heater, and – the discharge hose pumps the chlorine into the pipe at a point much lower than the sand filter valve height. Install close to where the return pipe goes into the ground.

    • Hi Kim, no, you shouldn’t need to do that. When the pump is off, the chlorine should stay in the chamber, with some oozing out, but the equal pressure on the suction and return lines should keep the chlorine from moving through the pipes. If you suspect or worry about chlorine backing up into your filter or pump, you could install a one-way check valve, between the Cl200 and the filter, to prevent chlorine from flowing into the filter/pump or heater. If you CL200 is at ground level, a foot or two below the filter or heater intakes level, there is less concern of a problem.

    • Hi, for a Hayward chlorinator, the chamber should be filled with water. Some chlorinators may drain out, when you remove the lid, but one thing you can do is start the pump with the lid off, allow the chamber to fill and then screw on the lid right before it overflows. If it does not fill up with water, and the dial is all the way up, there may be a clog in the unit, which can be flushed out, or remove the dial assembly to clear.

    • Hi, to mount the base of the chlorinator, I would use a hefty screw, probably as large as would fit through the hole. Sorry I don’t know an exact size. It’s also recommended to use a anchor sockets or sleeves for the screws.

  5. What about the HAYWARD CL100 for above ground pools. First time pool owners,and needing a little guidance. The chlorine tabs are not dissolving in the auto-feeder and no water is in container. I have looked for troubleshooting but am having no luck in figuring what to do. Any help for the next step would be greatly appreciated.

    • Hi Cathy, the Hayward is the inline version for aboveground pools. If you disconnected it for the winter, make sure it is installed in the right direction, look for a small arrow on the bottom to indicate proper direction of water flow. If that’s good, take the lid off and turn the dial up all the way (you may have to shut off the pump to open the lid). With the pump on, the chlorinator should fill up with water and begin to slowly overflow. If that doesn’t happen, remove all the tablets and clean out the small check valve in the bottom and also the water inlet hole, with a small wire or paperclip. Calcium residues can clog these small orifices. If that doesn’t work, check the action on the dial, you should see more water come in as you turn the dial up, if not, it may need some parts like the check valve or the dial assembly, which we have in our parts department!

    • Hi Jacen, there are two main areas inside the chamber that can clog. ONe is the standpipe, which is about 5″ long, and affixed to one side. A long piece of wire can be used to clean any deposits. You can also flush with a garden hose (gently). There is another small hole on the other side near the bottom, very small about 1/8″ diameter than is not very deep. This can clog more easily than the standpipe. A paperclip, or bent wire can be used to ream out the hole. Now you asked about CL200 inline models, but for those with the CL220 Offline models, the clog problem is usually in the check valve fitting that screws onto the feeder, and the injector fittings that clamp onto the pipes. For best results, replace these doodads every 1-2 seasons, with the fitting kit CLX220EA.

  6. We recently bought one of these. The CL200. And it does not seem to maintain the pool well at all. Pool is co Stanton turning every few days. And Alger is returning. I have turned it up to the 3/4 mark it came home today after filling the tablets and my pool is green. Have used chlorinated in the past and loved them. This is beginning to be a nightmare.

    • Hi Virginia, there are many variables at play, such as your pool water pH level and your level of cyanuric acid, or stabilizer, and your filter efficiency and pump circulation are also important. It’s not just the chlorinator that keeps your pool clean and clear. Now if all else is doing great, water is balanced and the filter is properly sized and effective, but your chlorinator does not deliver the amount of chlorine necessary for a consistent 1-2 ppm test reading, then there could be some problems, like we list in the article above. Off-line units need regular check valve and injector replacements found in the hose kits. Inline units need occasional cleaning of the standpipe (just ream it out with a wire), and make sure the small water intake hole is also clear (ream with a wire or paperclip). they can get clogged up with a gunky calcium buildup over time. Let me know if I can help further!

  7. Pingback: Automatic Pool Chlorinators: Buyer's Guide | InTheSwim Pool Blog

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