Error Codes for a GE SmartWater Water Softener System

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The error codes for a GE SmartWater water softener help identify issues that may prevent soft water from reaching your shower.

For homeowners who live in areas with hard water, a GE SmartWater water softener system can make bathing and showering a much more pleasurable experience. However, problems may occasionally arise with your water softener that prevent it from operating properly. To help you troubleshoot the softener, an error code appears in the display that corresponds to a specific issue. Familiarizing yourself with the various error codes can prepare you for the next time a problem arises with your water softener.


Err 1

When the Err 1 error code appears in your GE SmartWater water softener's display, there has been an electronics failure. As a result, the control settings must be reprogrammed. Pressing any key on the display will load the default settings. To change the settings, the "SET" button on the display's top right side must be pressed. A number will appear in the display that corresponds to the various settings; push the up or down arrow keys to scroll through the numbers until you reach the desired setting. Once you have reached your desired setting, hit the left arrow button until the number on the right side of the display stops flashing.


Err 2

An Err 2 error code in your water softener's display indicates that there has been an improper regeneration start. An improper regeneration typically occurs when the limit switch is left open at a time when it should have been closed. In some cases, this occurs because the valve cam gear has rotated during the regeneration cycle. Pressing any key will remove the error code. However, if the valve cam gear rotates into the out-of-service position, the control valve must activate the motor so the cam gear can be moved to the proper position. A GE SmartWater water softener may also experience an improper regeneration start if there is an issue with the softener's motor. If this is the case, the motor assembly must be replaced. The motor wire should also be checked if the Err 2 error code appears because it may have become disconnected. In addition, a faulty switch may result in an Err 2 error. Once the switch is replaced, your water softener should function normally.


Err 3

The Err 3 error code in a GE SmartWater water softener's display indicates that a regeneration cycle has had an improper finish. If this occurs, the limit switch has been left open when it should be closed. The valve cam gear may have moved into the out-of-service position, causing the issue. Allow the control to activate the motor and move the cam gear back to the proper position. As with the Err 2, an Err 3 error code may indicate a faulty motor or switch. Have the motor assembly or switch replaced. In addition, check the motor wire to see if it has become disconnected.


Err 4

When the Err 4 error code appears in your water softener's display, it indicates that the softener's controls have been improperly set. One or more of the softener's settings may be out of the allowable range. Use the "SET" button on the display's top right side to adjust the settings so that they fall within the allowable range. Consult the softener's use and care instructions to determine which settings may be improperly set.



Jennifer Blair

Based in New York City, Jennifer Blair has been covering all things home and garden since 2001. Her writing has appeared on, World Lifestyle, and House Logic. Blair holds a Bachelor of Arts in Writing Seminars from the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland.