View Full Version : Water softeners?

02-02-2009, 10:27 AM
We live in an area with very high mineral content in the water. I burned through a coffee pot every 3 months until I went to filtered water but even then it still went out after a while (I think unfiltered water was still being put in occassionally.)

I am thinking about a water softener but am wondering if anyone has input on benefits, issues, preferred models, etc.

Gary Slusser
02-02-2009, 10:42 AM
Coffee pots are not the only thing that suffers from hard water. Think of your water heater, other water using appliances and all the fixtures in the house.

Softeners come in various sizes, like vehicles, so they must be sized based on the job they have to do. So I suggest a correctly sized softener, with the correct constant SFR (service flow rating) required based on your family size, the amount of hardness, the number of bathrooms and the type of fixtures in them. That softener should have a Clack WS-1 control valve. For sizing info, visit the sizing page on my web site.

02-02-2009, 06:27 PM
I prefer the Fleck 5600 metered demand system. It does not have electronic to "crash". It is a system that has been around the block several times and can keep going.

Dido... I install these also and have had no issues. I don't know much about the clack, but I think it is unfair to say the control must be a clack. I will say the clack bypass (which is a full port valve) is superior.

Gary Slusser
02-03-2009, 10:59 PM
I've sold thousands of Fleck control valves on filters and softeners, 5600s and 25 or so 7000s on softeners and 2500s and 2510s on filters.

The Clack line of valves have a much improved version of the same piston seal and spacer design of the Fleck line but, the Clack has many features that the Fleck 5600 and 2510 in any version does not have. The Clack was designed to be the easiest and quickest control to repair by three ex Fleck engineers with 72 years at Fleck. I've sold right at 1150 Clack WS 1 valves. I've had 21 problems which is many fewer than I had with the same number of Fleck valves. Other than Master Plumber Mark, I think I'm the only one here that has sold a Clack valve...

master plumber mark
02-04-2009, 12:31 AM
The Clack is probably the best you can get right now...

I have installed probably 50 and only have had
one give me troubles with the meter getting stuck (no big deal)

I crimped a suction line shut on one pushing
the brine tank back too close to the wall

and I had one in very bad water that turned out to be the well...

so actually , I have yet to have to tear
into one due to actual issues with the valve....

I am doing 13- 40 lb bags of salt per year.
on city water at 22 parts hard.... 3 bathrooms 4 people

02-04-2009, 04:32 PM
I have the Clack heads on both Centaur filter and softener from Gary. Seem to be holding up very well.

I have a relative who bought 3 Fleck 5600's and had very poor service from Fleck. Apparently Fleck had a major QA/QC problem and couldn't even ship him new heads due to all of them being held up.


Gary Slusser
02-04-2009, 08:41 PM
Thanks Tim, on Friday your equipment will be 13 months old. I've sold 1152 Clack valves as of today and there have been 21 problems. That's in 5 years the 21st of last month. There is no better control valve, especially for a DIYer.

02-04-2009, 08:49 PM
everybody forgot to mention to "Tim" that there are some downsides on the water softeners, such as high maintenance and the fact that you have to install reverse osmosis under your kitchen sink that also requires maintenance

good luck "Tim" :cool: