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Re: [Shop-talk] Water treatment options

To: Randall <>
Subject: Re: [Shop-talk] Water treatment options
From: Benjamin Zwissler <>
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 2014 09:50:50 -0500
References: <> <>
I can't speak to the acidity, but putting in a water softener is a
reasonably easy do it yourself project.  As far as I can tell the electonic
units are snake oil, they don't remove the hardness but claim to make it
not "feel" hard.  It still leaves the minerals in the water which is what
does damage to the plumbing and leaves deposits on fixtures.

After 10 years of struggling to keep a Sears traditional softener unit
working I recently replaced mine with a "professional" quality unit that I
bought via Amazon for about $600.

It has a Fleck brand controller which seems to be respected among
professional plumbers and I'm told they make the Culligan units.  It was
sold from "ABC Water Equipment" and is a 48,000 grain unit.  The capacity
in grains is determined by the number of people in your house and the
hardness of the water.  We have a four bedroom house so I sized it for
that, but most of the time its just my wife and I and with just us it only
regenerates about once every two weeks, every 3-5 days is more
typical.  With a full house of 5-6 people it might be more right-sized.

The water softeners I looked at were often combined with iron
removal options but I didn't pay much attention.  We have city water and
that's not an issue.  There's a lot hype and snake-oil in water softeners
sales, but my conclusion, and also what Consumer Reports recommended, is a
standard unit with demand based regneration.  "You can pay more but you
can't get better".


On Tue, Jan 14, 2014 at 2:03 AM, Randall <> wrote:

> > Next, I had acidic water, 5.5 I believe
> 5.5 is not bad at all, that is less acidic than rainwater!  Unless it is
> causing a specific problem, I'd leave it alone.
> OTOH, adding just a little bit of lime is supposed to make the water taste
> better.
> > then I had hardwater (to be expected),
> How hard is it?  Some hardness is a good thing, absolutely pure water is
> actually kind of unpleasant to wash with IMO.  Again,
> unless you are unhappy with the effects, it might make more sense to leave
> it alone.
> > The Iron I'm not worried about. (you can't see, or smell it.)
> So not much iron, and it's good for you.
> > The hard water, I wanted to treat with an electronic system.
> > Does anyone
> > know if they work, or are they snake oil?
> Define "work".  They cannot remove hardness from the water.  Proponents
> claim they lessen the effects of the hard water, but there
> is no accepted method for measuring that.  And the dissolved minerals will
> still come out if you boil the water, clog up your
> humidifier (or swamp cooler), etc.
> > I plan to do the work myself, am I crazy?
> Should be no reason you can't do the work.  The only problem would be
> proving that the electronic gizmo actually does anything when
> you're finished.  But if you're happy, I guess that's what is important.
> Randall
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