Another water softner request for advice

StretchRcrFebruary 25, 2013

Hi Everyone,
I'm looking for some water softener guidance. I live in an area with hard water so a softener is pretty much required. In my last home, I installed a 40K grain GE (big box version) and it worked fine. I just moved and now that I know a little more about them, I think there are better options. I'm a pretty accomplished DIY'r and won't have any trouble doing the install and set up as well as maintance along the way. What I need help with is deterimining the correct size, model, and options. I've read about the Fleck and Clack valves and will probably go with one of those. Below are the details on my usage and city provided water. This came from the 2012 water report.

3 people in the house
2 bathrooms with one tub that is rarely used.
irrigation will be fed upstream from the softener

PH 7.76
Hardness 19
Sulfides 147
TDS 636
Manganese 13.5
Alkalinity 219
Turbidity .3

Thanks in advance

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I just have a minute, but can spend more time on this later. After a quick glance:

What are the units on those numbers. If that manganese number is ppb, we're fine, but if it is ppm, you need to remove it prior to the softener.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 2:08PM
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PH 7.76
Sorry, should have included the unit of measurment. Also noticed the suffides was actually listed as sulfate. I corrected below.

Hardness 19
Sulfate 147 ppm
TDS 636 ppm
Manganese 13.5 ppb
Alkalinity 219 ppm as CaCO3
Turbidity .3 NTU

    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 4:11PM
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One other piece of information to include. The main supply coming into the house is 1", but reduces to 3/4" before it get's to the garage where the WS will be located.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 4:19PM
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By my simple calculations, a 40,000 grain would be about right. I'm looking at the Fleck 5600 SXT.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2013 at 12:41PM
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You could go with a 1.25 cubic ft softener, but it will be less slat-efficient than a 1 cubic ft. A 1 cuft would regen every 7 days at 6 lb salt per cuft of resin. A 1.25 cuft would theoretically regen every 9 days. However, your softener will operate better for a longer period of time if you regen every 7 days. The difference between the two, in terms of salt usage would be 3 lb per month. So, if you want the ability to have a slightly higher flow, go with the 1.25.

The Fleck 5600sxt you mentioned is a good, reliable valve that should provide many years of service. Once your softener arrives I can help with programming for best efficiency.

Things you need:

1) Top distribution basket
2) Gravel underbed
3) High quality American or German resin, 10% crosslinked (because you are on city water)
4) Noryl bypass.
5) Plumb the softener with a separate bypass so you can remove it, if necessary, without disrupting water flow to your home.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2013 at 2:47PM
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Thanks for all the great advise. I decided to order the 1.25 5600sxt. It seems like our usage is trending up as my son gets older and has more friends around the house so I thought it would be a good idea to lean towards the larger option. I placed my order with all the details listed above. It should be delivered tomorrow so I hope to get it installed later in the week. Appriciate the offer to help me program it for best efficiency. I'll keep an eye out for your response.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2013 at 1:25PM
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I received my water softener and everything looks great. I do have one question regarding the gravel underbed. How much do I put in? I would guess that all thatâÂÂs needed is enough to keep the resin off the bottom. Thanks for the guidance. I'll be programing it shortly as well so any help there is appreciated too.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2013 at 7:56PM
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Gravel needs to cover the bottom of the tank and the lower basket.

What resin did you purchase? If I know that, I can locate the engineering spec sheet for the resin and set programming appropriately.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2013 at 10:34AM
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NSF Approved High Capacity Cation 10% Crosslink Softening Resin (Imported)

    Bookmark   March 8, 2013 at 11:54AM
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Brand and name?

    Bookmark   March 8, 2013 at 12:14PM
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That's all it says on the order form. I bought it from Ohio Pure and spoke wiht someone there about it. They told me it was high quality and would be perfect. I never thought to ask the brand.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2013 at 11:40AM
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Once the softener is installed, add 2.5 gallons cold water to the brine tank. Add a couple of bags of salt. Enter the master programming mode on the valve controller and set as follows:

1. DF - GAL
2. VT - St1b
3. CT - Fd
4. NT - 1
5. TS - U1
6. C - 26
7. H - 19
8. RS - SF
9. SF - 20

  1. RC - 0

  2. DO - 8

  3. RT - 2:00 (or other time when you are unlikely to use water for a couple of hours)

BD - 60
BW - 10
RR - 10
BF - Find your BLFC sticker (look at the attached pic - the sticker is inside the red circle) If it is 0.25 GPM then set BF at 10. If 0.5 GPM set at 5, if 1.0 gpm, set at 3.

  1. Ensure all days are ON, unless you have a specific day of the week when you need the softener to NOT regen.
  2. CD doesn't matter unless you set a day to OFF in step 14
  3. FM - t0.7
  4. should not be available

Once the valve is programmed, step out of master programming mode and set the clock to the correct time. Manually place the softener in regen. Allow the backwash to finish, then manually step through the other steps. Leave each one on just long enough to verify it is working. Allow the fast rinse to run for about 5 minutes - you will have added just a bit of brine during the brief time it was in the brine draw step and you will want to flush that out. Step into service mode and enjoy your soft water.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2013 at 12:31PM
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I got everything set up without too much trouble. Just a couple programming questions. For #2 VT I don't have an St1b option. The information that came with my equipment reccomends dF1b (Standard Downflow/Upflow, Single Backwash). For #13 I don't have a BW screen.

Thanks again!

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 3:13AM
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#2 - What options do you have? Looks like dF1b (if that is in the menu) is what you want.

#13: That is very strange - What do you see during this step?

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 10:28AM
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