Which whole house filter before softener?

dantisSeptember 20, 2011

Hi All,

I am planning on replacing my existing softener/neutralizer with a Kinetico, however, i want to place a sediment filter before the softener. I do get sediment in my spin down filter for my irrigation (I have ever since changinging the well pump 18 months ago). The Kinetico dealer wants to put in a string cartridge filter, is this the best choice? No need to filter chlorine etc and I will be getting thr Kinetico K5 RO system as well...any opinions appreciated..


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IIRC, there is a warranty consideration based on if and what pre-filter is used in front of certain Kinetico models.

At what you're paying for the Kinetico do exactly what the Kinetico dealer recommends and avail yourself of the longer warranty by following the Kinetico dealer's recommendations... and get everything in writing.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2011 at 12:09PM
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thank you lurker. This whole softener thing is driving me crazy. I knwo its not rocket science, but new to me. For your info, i have a generic with Fleck heads that was in the house when purchased. Softner and neutralizer. Our usage has gone up considerably (previous owner had 2 people, I have 7 now) After 2 months of having existing system serviced I would lose the slippery feel and get the blue-green staining. I decided to call the Kinetico guy in when I replaced my hotw water heatr after only 2 years, rotted out. From reading here, Kinetico is the way to go. I plan on dying in this house (not any time soon :)) so figured I should bite the bullet and go for the Kinetico. My neighbor said he is pleased with it, as most people do here..I just hesitate because of the anount of $$..its like buying a car, am I getting the best bang for the buck???

    Bookmark   September 20, 2011 at 12:19PM
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30-micron string-cartridge pre-filter sounds smart. Just be sure it's sized to deliver full-flow and don't neglect to change the cartridge at appropriate intervals.

As to Kinetico,.....yup, they're expensive. But, in my experience, they hold up their end of the bargain. I've had two at two different locations for 19 years. Refurbished both about three years ago for a couple hundred each. At one location, responded to dealer incentive for replacement unit 15 months ago. Suspect that unit is same/similar to what you're considering. As before, it operates flawlessly. They did everything. I did nothing. If you've got the bucks, they're the way to go IMHO.

Also have two of their K5W RO units. These units, as their previous ones that I also owned for 18 years, have been trouble-free for the duration.

"Best bang for the buck?" Apparently I thought so then. I also think so now. If I was DIY guy, perhaps I would have different opinion. I have neither time nor expertise. Was glad to have them do it all -- and pay their price -- as long as the equipment performed and lasted as represented. It has. All of it. From the beginning.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2011 at 12:36PM
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Increasing the occupancy from two to seven people it's no wonder the old softener can't keep up and no amount of servicing will get it to. It is seriously undersized.

IMO, you are not getting the best bang for the buck, With Kinetico you get an excellent softener with a couple reservations. If you have a good Kinetico dealer then Kinetico can be a good choice and they have built a loyal customer base but you will be locked to your local Kinetico dealer and their product, parts, and service pricing policies.

You should be able to get a correctly sized (based on water conditions, occupancy, bathrooms, and appliances) and efficiently set up industry standard softener and acid neutralizer for roughly half the cost of the Kinetico products if you can find a competent independent water treatment pro in your area. With an industry standard softener tech info is readily available for download (not with Kinetico) and parts are available all over the net (not with Kinetico) and there always seems to be people locally who service and sell parts for Fleck control valves.

Before you grab your checkbook you should investigate all your options and then make an informed decision whichever products you choose.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2011 at 1:01PM
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What are your water test results and what equipment was recommended by model number? Did they offer a neutralizer as well? If so, was it an up-flow or backwashing type? Are you on the East Coast?

What is your hardness, pH, iron and TDS? any other test results would be helpful.

If your neutralizer is a backwashing type, then a prefilter would not be needed but wouldn't hurt. There are only a couple of Kinetico units that require a prefilter, so it's important to know the recommendations.

As with any product, the reliability, longevity, and customer support can also be important factors in the decision making process.

Andy Christensen

    Bookmark   September 20, 2011 at 1:26PM
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Im sorry, i don't have the results with me. But this is where I get confused, I didn't know there were different models of Kinetico. (sorry, ignorance or not asking the correct questions). Being that it is a two tank system (and two tank neutralizer), I would always have soft water because one of each tank is always on line. The regen would be based on our usage since it is not electric, but water powered. Basically the rep said he would make our setting to regen at so many gallons and that Kinetico units are not sized like the the single tank softeners.

I am on the east coast, SE Mass to be specific.

@lurker, unfortunately I have not found a softener/water person that can provide that service.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2011 at 1:41PM
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All on demand water softeners regenerate based on water usage regardless of brand. That is not unique to Kinetico and whether water powered or electrical makes no difference in that regard either.

Kinetico is not the only softener that has twin resin tanks and provides soft water 24/7.

"... unfortunately I have not found a softener/water person that can provide that service"

Sometimes you really have to look. Ask your neighbors who they use. They may recommend someone or tell you who to avoid. Look in the Yellow Pages under water treatment for ads that have no brand name.

Or, go here and fill in your Zip Code... http://www.wqa.org/members.cfm?section=1

Since you want to do this once and get it really right you need to do more research.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2011 at 2:02PM
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Ok guys, I had kinetico 2100f OD twin tank neutralizer with 2060s softener installed yesterday. Upstream a 10" pentek 10 micron string filter. Very happy with install. Water has the "slippery" feel. I have 2 questions. Does it take a few days for the ph to increase after install? I am using pool test strips, and ph has gone from 6 to about 6.5...obviously I want 7...second, can I fill the tanks with calcite when it s time or leave it to pros? Tough to tell when it's required with black tanks, flashlight does not shine through...thank u

    Bookmark   October 12, 2011 at 10:37PM
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It may take a day or two, but your water should reach the neutral state or near 7pH. What were your hardness and iron levels?

Do you have a well pump or a shallow well/jet pump?

Try another pH tester just to make sure.

Andy Christensen

    Bookmark   October 13, 2011 at 6:59AM
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