Water Softening

sjb3ipOctober 24, 2012

We are doing a complete remodel on our house and are considering softening the water. I have searched this site fairly extensively about water softening and am only getting extremely confused so I thought I'd just put up my own post.

We have city water and are told it's around 15.2 g/gal.

1. Is this terribly hard water?

2. What are the pros and cons of having soft water?

3. I have gotten a quote for an HP Soft 2 for $2650 or for a double tank system, it would be $3350. I haven't read anything about HP, so I'm not sure if it's a reputable brand.

4. I realize that if we did the softening, we'd still need to filter the drinking water. Is a regular filter ok, or do we need an R/O system?

I'm concerned about filtering out too much (can you do that?) Doesn't one need some minerals to keep a healthy body and wouldn't it come from the water?

For the filter I was quoted the following for the 3M Body Glove brand.

BG 1000/ $415 with $133 for each replacement filter

BG 3000/ $478 with $185

BG 12000/ $750 with $375

I understand the R/O system would be comparably priced.

Please help! I'm not even sure if we need to soften our water or just put softener in our dishwasher to keep our glasses from etching!

All help is greatly appreciated!

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tjdabomb

My in-laws have lousy city water, they put a used RO system on their kitchen supply and they swear by it (instead of swearing at it!! :p )

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 2:17PM
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justalurker

A little light reading regarding water hardness...

http://www.wqa.org/sitelogic.cfm?ID=362

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 2:34PM
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sjb3ip

thanks to you both! now that i've done the light reading, it's clear i have very hard water. any thoughts on the system i mentioned?

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 3:43PM
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aliceinwonderland_id

A bunch of questions:

1. How many people in the home?
2. Do you have any high-water-use fixtures, such as a jacuzzi tub or multi-head shower?
3. Frequent of long-term guest? If so, how many, how often.
4. City or well water?
5. For drinking water - what is your primary concern (taste, odor, contaminant)? Be specific. Are these issues you have tested results for or is the filter just precautionary?
6. Have you had a water test done? If not, you want to know: pH, TDS, hardness, sulfates, bacteria, iron, manganese (combination iron+manganese is fine), alkalinity.

HP Soft 2: I have not direct experience with this softener. At a glance it looks fine, but I am a little curious. It has integrated power backup - Do you have frequent power outages? It is also a fairly large softener - do you have 5-6 people in your household, or need high water flow?

BG filters: These are proprietary filters, which is why the price is so high. I recommend non-proprietary filters so your initial cost and your filter cost are lower.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 4:11PM
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sjb3ip

ok, here goes:
1. 3 adults, 2 small kids
2. we are installing a jacuzzi tub in the master bath as well as 2 shower heads. (we will have 2 full baths, 3 half baths (including pool bathroom) and 1 powder room)
3. mother-in-law who comes for 3 or 4 days 5x a year
4. city water
5. drinking water - mostly for taste. i don't want to filter out minerals that would be good for us, but i also don't want contaminants that would be harmful either.
6. haven't had a water test done (no water in the house yet). could do it at my parents' house which is from the same city source if that helps.

Regarding high water flow - does that affect pressure? if so, then i'd like high water flow, but don't really know if we need it or not.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 4:18PM
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