Kinetico 2040 or something similar

nasayinApril 2, 2012


Just receive a quote for Kinetico 2040 for 3900. Price is a little steep. I have a finish basement and wife does not want to see a big water softener out in the open. The main water line is hidden underneath a counter and the 2040 would fit perfectly under there. The furnace and water heater are in a separate room enclosed. Are there any similar water softener out there in terms of size and quality?

Also does the water softener damages your lawn? My local dealer says it doesn't.


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Sorry forgot to list some important informations. Here is the results from the water test:


    Bookmark   April 2, 2012 at 11:40AM
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Kinetico is a high-end vendor. However the equipment is excellent and they do hold up their end of the bargain. I've had them at two locations for almost twenty years. There are cheaper alternatives, but none better.

"....does the water softener damages your lawn?"

Softened water will not damage your lawn.....but no sense in using softened water for lawn watering. Most people have by-pass line for irrigation water.

Salt-laden flush-water from a softener WILL damage your lawn....if that's what you meant....unsure from the wording you used. Flush-water from the softener will need someplace else to go.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2012 at 11:46AM
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Thanks asolo!

Wow 20 years and no service calls? The rep did say he would install a bypass valve and that the flush water will go thru the pipes underneath the sink which is about 4-5 feet away from the main water line. I don't know if it is wise to pony up $3900 but I guess it is if it can last over 20 years. I know 3 people that recently bought water softeners from Sears and Lowes and have had no problems and they are only 1/4 of the Kinetico price.
Some more informations, I have 2.5 bathrooms, 3 adults, and a child. Is the 2040 more than sufficient?
Do you have any recommendation on water filter solutions underneath the sink in the kitchen? Thanks.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2012 at 3:50PM
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Disclaimer.....I didn't say "no service calls".

I had the original units re-filled with media and brought up to new condition at (I think I recall) about 15 years. They were still working fine. I did this prophylactically. However, I could see -- and tech verified -- that the media was nearly exhausted due to chlorine contamination. As I recall, that service was about $230.00 per unit. They did everything. I did nothing.

After 18 years, I replaced the unit at one location with their latest/greatest because of huge incentive they were offering to replace old with new. However, previous unit was still working fine. Refurbished unit still working fine at other location.

These were not "repairs" per-se because nothing was actually wrong with units. It was my own decision to service and to replace.

That said, I'd buy Kinetico again without hesitation. The units have been excellent and Kinetico's people have been great. My situation as full-time care-giver is such that I don't have time for problems or DIY maintenance issues. I like the reliability of the KInetico units and I like how they do, indeed, do everything from start to finish and I do nothing. Therefore willing to pay the price. Others have other opinions.

I also have two of their K5W RO units which are -- by far, IMHO -- the best in the marketplace. They, likewise, have been wonderful trouble-free units as their predecessors were before the upgrade. I've had them since 1992. They, too, are high-end offerings. You can get cheaper, but you can't get better.

(I have no relationship with Kinetico other than as a retail customer.)

    Bookmark   April 3, 2012 at 5:31PM
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Be advised there certainly are other, cheaper, ways to go. There's also plenty of junk available.

If you use the "search" function on this forum you will find plenty of advice and opinion about alternatives. Water softeners have been a frequent topic here for years.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2012 at 5:51PM
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Too much sodium can absolutely damage your lawn and plants over time. However, as asolo said, there is no sense spending money to water your landscape when there is no benefit.

I know of no other softener that will function as well as Kinetico, given your space requirements. Be aware that because they use a finer-mesh resin, they are more susceptible to damage from particulates and often require a pre-filter.

Is there no way to install a softener in the utility room with your water heater and furnace?

    Bookmark   April 3, 2012 at 5:59PM
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Thanks again asolo! Seems a lot of Kinetico customers are really happy with the product and quality.

Thanks Aliceinwonderland for your response! I don't think I can put it in the utility room. I do not have a sump pump or french drains. I think the only way to backwash is to use the kitchen sink which is by the wet bar. And the water main is like 4-5 feet away from the sink.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 2:16PM
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Rather than a tiny Kinetico that hides under the counter and regenerates frequently you might consider a more correctly sized Kinetico installed in the ground outside IF you live in a temperate climate. Since Kineticos do not require electricity this is done and works quite well.

If you do live in a temperate climate and electricity can be provided you could install an industry standard softener in ground outside that would work as well and provide the same reliability as a Kinetico for a LOT less money. Parts and service literature would be readily available in way too many places unlike Kinetico where you would be married to your dealer at whatever your dealer decides to charge if they'll even sell you parts.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 2:35PM
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I do have one of my units outside. The no-electricity-needed characteristic was a factor at both locations. Does make site selection easier.

Justalurker is correct about being "married". Kinetico's position in the market is sort of a "king of the hill" approach. They do control everything. They are not a DIY-friendly vendor except for filter-changes -- and the filters must be theirs. All I can say is their equipment and their people (at least where I live) have been top-notch. They do what they say they'll do. It's been a pleasant "marriage" for me.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 3:01PM
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Many. many posts by Kinetico owners on internet forums ask for help finding parts or service literature when their local dealer refuses to supply either. Some posts have noted that they contacted Kinetico corporate for parts and/or service literature and were sent back to their local dealers to grovel and be gouged.

IMO Kinetico is a high quality, top tier product not necessarily better than some alternatives. Kinetico is expensive and with the single advantage (in some circumstances) of not requiring electricity does not soften water better than some alternatives.

With Kinetico and other proprietary designs like ECOwater, Culligan, and Hague the customer is married (prisoner) to the local dealer's pricing, parts, and service policies with no expectation of help from the manufacturer when (if) the dealer treats them badly.

If you have a great local dealer, as Asolo does, then you're happy and that is great. If you don't then you paid a premium price for the product and will continue to do so for parts and service as long as you own that product and again, that's all proprietary designs not just Kinetico.

For me, when you can get something as reliable and effective for a lot less money and can get parts, service literature, and service from numerous sources that's a wiser choice cause even if worse comes to worst you can at least help yourself... and I'm not just talking water softeners.


    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 3:22PM
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Kind of like Apple computers.....I have one of those, too, (seven years since the switch) and have a similar opinion of it. Probably a personality-trait in there somewhere. All I know is my stuff works and doesn't give me grief. Apparently I'm willing to "marry" for it. ; )

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 4:10PM
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Bad analogy. There are alternatives for parts and tech info for Apples and iMacs and Macbooks don't cost 6x the price of comparable alternatives.

My stuff works (industry standard softener and iMacs and PCs and iPhone and Touches and iPad), doesn't give me grief, and I'm only married to my wife.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 4:34PM
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Unfortunately I live in the NorthEast so no go placing the water softener outside. Justalurker - so you think 2040 is too small for my family? First time dealing with Kinetico rep so not sure how good they are. If I do go with Kinetico, hopefully my experience is similar to asolo.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 11:08AM
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Lot of money to bet on hopefully.

Do your homework and research the dealer's reputation. Talk to neighbors and check the local BBB and state AG's consumer affairs office.

Softeners can be installed in-ground as long as the frost line is observed. A guy up the road has one in the ground and we're at 7k ft in the rockies with no problems.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 1:18PM
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No, do n ot get the 2040. The maximum iron allowed for that unit is only 1.0 ppm and I usually hesitate at anything more than 0.5ppm.

The reason is that the 2040 uses fine mesh resin, which is good for iron removal, but it is a packed bed AND an upflow model. That means it won't backwash like typical softeners in that there is no freeboard and it backwashed down. Higher hardness is no so much an issue but that iron WILL cause problems in the coming years.

For size get the Kinetico Q237 which is a down flow unit, standard mesh resin and can backwash normally---all at the same size. And it should be much cheaper. Only a five-year warranty, though.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 8:02PM
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andy_c - i was incorrect about the iron level. The Kinetico rep said the 2 was the Well, i wanted to get another quote so I contacted Culligan. The rep said that i might be able to put the water softener in the utility room but is unsure about the draining and he would need to contact the installer. Are Culligan just as reliable as Kinetico?

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 12:34PM
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Whew! That makes a BIG difference. Then, yes, the 2040 will work very well with your water conditions. The reliability of any dealer is based on his willingness to satisfy his customers through service, pricing and promptness. Given your space demands, Culligan has nothing that can be placed there.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 6:13PM
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