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Author Topic: Water Softner?  (Read 1856 times)

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Offline Onthesauk

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Water Softner?
« on: April 25, 2007, 10:36:36 pm »
We've got a lot of iron in our water and are just getting ready to install a water softner.  I've never had one before.  Not excited about the slimy feel but less excited about the red in all the fixtures.  Any experience out there?  Suggestions?  Do's and don'ts?  I was planning on digging a dry sump for the water from the regeneration cycle.  Will the brine keep it from freezing in the winter?  Would appreciate any thoughts.

Steve
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Online Gary_C

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2007, 11:57:34 pm »
There are two kinds of iron in water. The red rust in the water can be filtered out so make sure you have a good filter in the line. The other kind of iron is called bacterial iron and it cannot be filtered out. Most ion exchange softeners can handle a little bacterial iron, but will get plugged up if you have too much iron.

You can somewhat control bacterial iron by slug treating your well with chlorine and there are even some systems that will drop clorine pellets in the well. There are also special water treatment units for bacterial iron that I know Graingers sells. If you are able to handle the iron with the softener, you can buy softener salt with iron control.

Don't expect the flush water from the softener to not freeze as there is not very much salt in the water and much of the water is just rinse water anyway.

Make sure you have a newer style of softner with the sensor to start the regeneration cycle and not the old timer style. The old style takes too much salt.

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Offline WDH

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2007, 12:18:47 am »
I have a water softener with a resin tank with resin beads that precipitate the hardness.  The iron and calcium is captured by the resin beads.  Then, there is an associated salt tank that is used to flush and re-generate the resin.  The resin tank is about 10" in diameter and about 4 feet tall.  The salt tank hold 300 pounds of salt.  You set the system to re-charge about once per day (at my house, it is scheduled to flush the resin and re-charge at 4:00 a.m. when no one is usually using water).  This is more of a professional system than most home systems, but it will do the job.  In fact, it does a super job.  It will cost about $1500 installed (maybe more in your area), but believe me, it will take care of the problem.  Mine has been operating for about 15 years.  One of the best investments that I have made.  I am on a well, and with this system, I have better water than you can buy in a bottle :).  If you are interested, I can post some pics of the system and put you in touch with someone who can explain it much better the me.
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Offline Onthesauk

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2007, 10:59:03 am »
WDH,    That's pretty much the system we have on order, I just didn't know what to expect from it.  I'm pleased to hear you rave about the quality too.

Gary, I also worried about the amount of salt we might go through.  Water I use on the lawn and garden up around the house will have been through the softner, (hose bibs on the house,) but the garden is down closer to the well and that water won't have gone through the system.

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2007, 11:45:09 am »
I have run two of those resin-bed, ion-exchange softners for many years, one in the milkhouse and one in the house. About 4 years ago we replaced the one in the house with a new Culligan that had the water meter built in to determine when to regenerate based on water usage. There is a tremendous difference in salt usage as it does not regenerate until needed instead of just on a fixed time schedule. And like the older ones, you can set it to only regenerate late at night. Plus we have better water now than before. I would have replaced the one in the milkhouse but we got rid of the cows instead.
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Offline WDH

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2007, 10:59:02 pm »
That is a neat improvement to add the water meter.
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Offline Onthesauk

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2007, 10:51:14 pm »
Softner and filter installed and working since Friday evening.  Enormous improvement in water quality! 8)  Took a little over a day for all the red to flush out but now crystal clear!

Dug a pit right outside the garage wall, about 2' X 2' by about 3 foot deep.  Put some big rock in the bottom and then filled it up with 7/8 minus washed rock.  It went through it's first regen cycle last night and dry sump seems to work just fine.

Noticeable drop in water pressure though, maybe because of the bag filter?  Think the pressure tank is set at 40 - 65.  Any risk in cranking that up a little?
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Online SwampDonkey

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #7 on: April 08, 2017, 05:52:01 pm »
Anyone ever hear tell of Calmat water softner, anti-scale, rust treatment. Been around for years. My brother wants one. I may even get one for the new house if they work.

Home Depot seems to sell them.
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Calmat-Electronic-Anti-Scale-and-Rust-Water-Treatment-System-1-6004-000/206266883

http://www.calmat.net/calmat/en


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Offline YellowHammer

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2017, 10:12:29 pm »
We bought the Home Depot version, professionally installed.  Rainsoft I believe.  Significant improvement in water quality and taste.  I even noticed the shower heads started spraying more as the minerals seemed to dissolve as well as the coffee pot started flowing better.  Maintenance free other than adding salt, and it has the flow meter and even a little WIFI to let you know its status. We have very high mineral content water, and our municipality dumps so much chlorine that you can smell a running faucet. 
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Online SwampDonkey

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2017, 04:12:06 am »
Our problem is just calcium buildup in our water. We have no taste or smell in the water. Far better water than in any bottle.  ;D I actually don't want to get rid of calcium or magnesium, just want it to flow.

Pre-commercial thinning pays off. :)

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Offline Brad_bb

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2017, 08:47:46 pm »
Dug a pit right outside the garage wall, about 2' X 2' by about 3 foot deep.  Put some big rock in the bottom and then filled it up with 7/8 minus washed rock.  It went through it's first regen cycle last night and dry sump seems to work just fine.

Noticeable drop in water pressure though, maybe because of the bag filter?  Think the pressure tank is set at 40 - 65.  Any risk in cranking that up a little?

I don't understand what you mean by dry sump?  Where are you dumping the water from the regen cycle?  We always run it into the regular sump pump pit or drain.  You want your brine tank where it won't freeze.

I don't know what you mean by filter bag?  A regular water softener will not cause a noticeable pressure drop.  I have my systems set at the same 40-65 psi.  No pressure problem.

Just to make sure everybody is clear,... A regular water softener is filled with polystyrene beads(bb's).  The hard minerals are attracted to and stick to the beads.  The regen cycle flushes the beads with salt brine which draws the minerals off the beads and bonds it to the salt, and it flushes out of the soften and to your drain.  Salt is not added to your water.  Salt brine is only used to wash the beads at the interval it is set at.  During the regen cycle if it flows straight water to flush the salt brine out.

Yes there are 2 kinds of iron, one can be removed and the other can't.  The other, although it can't be removed, is going to be far less than the kind that can.  You won't see it in the water.  It won't color the water, but can leave a little reddish stain by the drain of the tub or sink.  It can usually be removed with cleaning products or CLR or vinegar.

To remove iron, I use a common green sand filter.  It looks like a water softener, but has no salt or anything to add.
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Offline DDW_OR

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2017, 12:38:24 am »
i am lucky. my dad and i witched the location of the well, He one day and Me the next. we came within 12 inches of each other.
well was drilled between the two points down to 85 feet. 15 gpm
water is Very soft, only have to use a drop of dish soap.

and tastes GREAT.
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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2017, 05:38:51 pm »
I showed the neighbour where to drill his well. All I did was use my eyes and knowledge of the land and knew he would hit artesian. He did, and does that thing ever gush water like a geyser. :D

Pre-commercial thinning pays off. :)

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Offline Onthesauk

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Re: Water Softner?
« Reply #13 on: May 01, 2017, 07:54:13 pm »
Old thread, (9years old,) moved from that house two years ago.

Softner worked well for the 8 years in the house.  Had we stayed there, probably would have stepped up for one of the salt free systems, just less to mess with.

The bag filter was a fabric bag that sat in the canister.  Every couple of months I'd open it, put a fresh bag, hose out the old and throw it in the washing machine.  Good for about 3 uses.  Cheaper then the fixed canisters.
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