Water Softener Advice Needed!

SolarvisionMarch 24, 2013

While building a new house in rural SW Colorado IâÂÂve done my best to follow the good advice on this forum - IâÂÂve obtained a well water test from an independent lab and received equipment recommendations from a local, independent, water treatment pro.

Now IâÂÂd like to run the results by the experts on this forum.

Water flows from the well at 2.5 gal/min. into an 1800 gallon cistern. Total coliform and E. coli tests were negative.

The house has 4 bedrooms 3.5 baths - normally occupied by only two adults, but we expect frequent visits from family and other guests - as many as four additional adults at a time. Plumbing into house is one inch; no water-hog appliances, only single head showers.

Lab analysis results (most measurements are mg/L, ND = not detected):

General Chemistry:
Alkalinity, Bicarbonate 800
Alkalinity, Carbonate 20.0
Alkalinity, Hydroxide ND
Alkalinity, Total 820
Chloride 22.0
Conductivity 1510
Flouride 1.04
Nitrate/Nitrite as N ND
pH 8.21
Sulfate 75
TDS 935

Dissolved Metals by ICP:

Calcium 13.7
Hardness 120
Iron 0.093
Magnesium 8.66
Potassium 1.13
Sodium 380

Dissolved Metals by ICPMS:

Antimony 0.0019
Arsenic 0.0016
Barium 0.394
Beryllium ND
Cadmium ND
Chromium ND
Copper 0.0055
lead 0.0009
Nickel 0.0027
Selenium 0.0039
Thallium ND
Mercury 0.0002

The local water treatment guy (who comes highly recommended) proposed the following:

Softener - WS Series Fleck 7000SXT metered softener, model number WS-2000MN-7M from Puregen, with WQA gold seal 8% resin. Puregen lists the following specs for this model:

App. Capacity @6 lbs. per cu. Ft. - 40,000
Mineral Tank Size - 12 x 52
Brine Tank Size - 18 x 30
Rec. Service Flow - 2.3-15 GPM
Est. Peak Flow - 18 GPM
Cu. Ft. resin - 2

RO system (also from Puregen) - ERO-5100ERP1000, listed at 5 stages, supplying 100 GPD, with a steel, 60 liter, NSF storage tank, that will service four locations via homerun, ý inch tubing: kitchen sink plus icemaker, MBA, kitchenette, laundry/dog room.

Hope IâÂÂve provided the information needed for any advice, suggestions, cautions, etc.

Thanks in advance for any help!

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H2OME

Hi Solarvision,

From looking at your water report, you have good water. Pretty good indeed. The only exception might be an ever-so-slightly elevated fluoride level. (Maximum Contaminate Level) is 2.0 and the (Public Health Level) is 1.0.

You should know however that I am not an independent contact. I am a regional manager for a manufacturer called LifeSource Water, inc. out of Pasadena, CA.

www.lifesourcewater.com

PLEASE NOTE: We do not like salt or potassium based water softeners for both the effects on humans and on the environment. We reduce fluoride by about 35% and the fact is, we can do a superior job on protecting appliances, and you'll never have to add chemicals or worry about polluting your down-stream sewer or septic systems.

If you'd like, my email address is david @ lifesourcewater.com.

If you contact me, I will send you spec sheets for what we can help you with.

David McMurray
760 805-4455

PS: Reverse Osmosis wastes a ton of water and it turns it acidic. I can explain as to why this is a bad thing. Please reconsider both salt water softeners as well as RO. I promise to be short, sweet and informative.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 6:26PM
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justalurker

Keyboarding for dollars... at least David is open about wanting to make a buck off someone else's web site.

Pity David doesn't have the ethics to observe the TOS on this forum.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 7:18PM
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Solarvision

I'm getting close to having to make a decision on my water softener equipment. Would sure appreciate some advice - am I OK with the recommended equipment?

Alice, Lurker... anyone?

    Bookmark   March 27, 2013 at 7:51PM
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aliceinwonderland_id

I was on vacation with no access to phone or internet (wonderful, by the way).

The proposed softener is large, even if sized for 6 people. It may be that they were trying to size purely for the number of bathrooms, assuming all four would be in use at the same time, but this softener will cause you to use a lot of extra salt. Additionally, with only two people normally in residence, an oversized softener will be more prone to channeling.

How many fixtures you reasonably expect to be using concurrently?

Base purely on your water analysis, you could use a 0.75 cubic ft softener. That would, however, be a bit small for the size of your house. A 1 cubic ft softener would be adequate. If your guests are there frequently, 1.25 cubic ft would be better. I wouldn't go larger than that.

Your water has a bit or iron. While it is not likely to be a problem, it does mean that you shouldn't go longer than a week between regens and that you should us 8 lb salt per cubic ft of resin during regens. For comparison:

1. 1.0 cuft -- 5 gpm flow (9 peak) 34 lb salt per month.
2. 1.25 cuft -- 6.5 gpm flow (9.8 peak) 42 lb salt per month
3. 2.0 cuft -- 10 gpm flow (15 peak) 68 lb salt per month

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 11:55AM
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Solarvision

Thanks Alice. Really appreciate your taking time to give me advice.

I can understand the dilemma of sizing a softener to meet the needs of only two full-time occupants, while still having the capacity of dealing with up to four guests.

Truth is, the frequency of guests in our new home is only a guess at this point. Most of the time it will just be me, my wife, and our Australian shepherd. Peak water usage for us would be a shower, load of dishes and a load of clothes which, of course, could be easily lowered with a little crew coordination.

I'll check with my installer to see what the thinking was behind the size of the softener he recommended and post back what I find out.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 6:01PM
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Solarvision

So I checked with my installer. He confirmed that the 2 cu. ft. size he recommended was based on the number of bathrooms in the house.

I told him I was more comfortable going with a 1.5 cu. ft. unit based on the reasons given by Alice in his post (above).

Would welcome other thoughts/comments...

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 6:31PM
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