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tnewman10
12-07-2009, 05:53 PM
So I am in need of a water softener. I had a 5 year old Kenmore and the resin tank blew up. It didnít do a very good job and left iron deposits in my toilet and tub, and turned my t-shirts orangish. I do have a whole house fileter. I had the water tested and it was a 31 hardness with 2 ppm of iron in it. I want a softener that will eliminate the iron issues, it really is an issue for me, I have a touch of OCD. The water dude recommended a 22,000 grain Aqua Systems Smart Choice (http://ilovemywater.com/Res-Products.aspx?ID=13) for a bunch of money. I can put one in myself but didnít see any place on line to purchase this model. It kinda looks like a Clack WS-1 (say like this http://www.affordablewater.us/Clack-WS1-Metered-32000-Grain-Water-Softener-P402C145.aspx) to me, is it the same thing? Is there a better model I can order? Another water guy recommended a 32,000 grain model. I have 2 bathrooms and 2 people living in my homeÖ Please give me some directionÖ

Gary Slusser
12-07-2009, 07:34 PM
The first link, they don't sell online. They are a multiple location local dealer. The control valve is a Clack that is highly modified so you can take it off a tank adapter to take it in for service and swap it or have them fix it. I suggest that they are very pricey.

The second is a competitor of mine. Every few weeks I hear from a customer of theirs and they need programming information. In comparing their softeners to mine, they usually aren't the same thing, smaller tank etc. and they don't include everything I do. So be careful, you get less from them and next to no help in in sizing or programming. Their instructions are very weak also.

To correctly size a water softener Click Here (http://www.qualitywaterassociates.com/softeners/sizingchart.htm)

tnewman10
12-07-2009, 10:21 PM
Thanks for the tips fellas. I thought the price was little high for the Aqua system, but I am just tired of the iron stains.... Do either of you have any model recommendations for me to fix up my iron issues?

Gary Slusser
12-08-2009, 12:13 PM
Thanks for the tips fellas. I thought the price was little high for the Aqua system, but I am just tired of the iron stains.... Do either of you have any model recommendations for me to fix up my iron issues?
What size do you need? That matters and dictates what control valve you can use.

tnewman10
12-08-2009, 08:03 PM
What size do you need? That matters and dictates what control valve you can use.

Some where between a 22000 and 32000 grain from what the two water guys I have talked to told me... Probably better get the 32000 grain to be safe... 2 people in home 2 baths...

Gary Slusser
12-08-2009, 08:34 PM
I take it you didn't visit my sizing and calculator pages.

tnewman10
12-08-2009, 10:03 PM
Here is what I am working with...

19 cups per 10 seconds
1.875 gallons per 10 seconds

7.125 GPM

31 hardness + (2ppm iron * 4)(8) + 0 maganese =39gpg compensated hardness

2 people * 60gal/person/day = 120 * 39 compensated hardness = 4680 * 8 days =

37440 grains

That is a higher than what the water guys recommended, but I guess I did tell them just one person, I have decided to include my girlfriend in my calculations because she stays over a lot.... LOL

Gary Slusser
12-09-2009, 12:26 PM
Here is what I am working with...

19 cups per 10 seconds
1.875 gallons per 10 seconds

7.125 GPM

31 hardness + (2ppm iron * 4)(8) + 0 maganese =39gpg compensated hardness

2 people * 60gal/person/day = 120 * 39 compensated hardness = 4680 * 8 days =

37440 grains

That is a higher than what the water guys recommended, but I guess I did tell them just one person, I have decided to include my girlfriend in my calculations because she stays over a lot.... LOL
As to the K of regenerated capacity, 37440. You round that up to 38K and find the volume of resin in cuft that gives you a salt dose efficiency of at least 3333 grains/lb.; which is a 2.0 cuft unit at less than 12 lbs/regeneration. And a regeneration on average of once every 8 days based on the number of gallons on the meter, 974.

I would tell you that until she moves in permanently, she's a guest and then program for her usage. In the mean time it will regenerate based on gallons used, sooner than once every 8 days adn go back up when she isn't there.

The constant SFR gpm of that size (2.0') gives you more than enough gpm based on your figures, which isn't the way to come up with your peak demand gpm...

Gary Slusser
12-09-2009, 12:58 PM
Fleck makes the best mechnical metered units. A 1 cu ft Fleck 5600 will do fine. You will need to use a resin cleaner to keep the iron off the resin. I have used this set up for years and have had great results.
You can't get more than 30K back into a 1.0 cuft softener AND, to do that you need 15 lbs of salt/regeneration. Which is a very poor salt efficiency of only 2000 grains/lb. Plus you then regenerate more frequently then once a week, and will use more water than a larger unit set up correctly and, you only have a 9 gpm constant SFR.

In other words, it is too small for good salt and water efficiency and probably too small for the peak demand of the house.

Gary Slusser
12-09-2009, 01:44 PM
Yeah i agree. Fleck has has stood the test of time and is the most widely used valve out there. It's a great choice.

aquaman
Not that Fleck is a bad choice, but there are a fairly large number of national brand companies that have stopped using Fleck and went to Clack control valves. Many plumbing supply houses have gone to Clack along with many local dealers.

IMO, based on 6 yrs and over 1300 sold, Clack is head and shoulders better than Fleck, and I sold Fleck for over 18 years.

tnewman10
12-09-2009, 06:05 PM
So I am really a newbie to all of this... You guys are not talking demand system, you are talking about me having to set up a timer.... I think I want something that generates when it needs to.. Cause I know i would screw up the setting of the timer.

Gary Slusser
12-09-2009, 06:45 PM
Where do you get that from, all of us talk demand initiated/metered control valves.

Read this again; And a regeneration on average of once every 8 days based on the number of gallons on the meter, 974.

974/120 gals/day for a family of 2 = a regeneration every 8.116666666, or on average every 8 days. A softener should be sized for a regeneration once every 7-9 days; that's for metered or time clock controls.

tnewman10
12-09-2009, 07:20 PM
ahhhh... OK I get ya... So Gary everyone else has selected a particular model that they recommend... What exact model do you recommend for my needs and how much is this bad boy gonna cost me... Give me a link to it if you got one..

Gary Slusser
12-10-2009, 09:21 AM
ahhhh... OK I get ya... So Gary everyone else has selected a particular model that they recommend... What exact model do you recommend for my needs and how much is this bad boy gonna cost me... Give me a link to it if you got one..
A particular model?

The Clack-WS1 CS is a brand (model?) of control valve and I also gave you the correct size of the softener, a 2.0 cuft (model?). Maybe I don't understand "model", I'm talking is a two tank type softener, meaning it has a resin tank and separate salt tank next to it, the same as everyone else is talking about.

For pricing of sizes not on my web site, you have to call me. You have to call me to get the right peak demand figure for your house anyway. That may change the size (model?) and the price.

Gary Slusser
12-10-2009, 11:42 AM
I didn't plan on getting more than 30k out of it. You trying to put words into my mouth?
The problem with your theory is that if he runs 8 days between regens, the iron will coat the resin and won't rinse enough. He then has to back down on the number of days between regen. Now he has a bigger unit but only using a portion of it.
My theory, "won't rinse enough.... only using a portion of it". LOL

I've been successfully treating up to 5 ppm of iron like this for 23 years now.

Proving like I've told you before, you don't know what you don't know. And won't listen to anything but what you think you know. So do it anyway you want to and I'll do it the way I do it. The difference is in our customers' water, salt and water efficiencies. And you can go to the Customer comments page on my forum and see what they say, We can't see what your customer says about your way though.

Anyway, your 32k requires 15 lbs of salt per regeneration and will only get 30K actually. That is a fact proven by any resin manufacturers' spec sheet on the resin you use.

15 lbs and 30K gets your customer into a poor salt efficiency of 30,000/15 = a salt efficiency of 2000 grain/lb. And you put him into a regeneration based on 30,000, so the gallons would be 30000/120= 4680 per day so 30000-4680=25320 after the 24 hour reserve is taken out (you may do the 24 hr reserve differently) and 25320/4680 = 5.4, or a regeneration every 5 days @ 15 Lbs.

Mine he gets a regeneration on average every 8 days with 12 lbs. and there are 46 8 day periods in a year, and 365/5 days = 73 5 day periods your way. So 73-46 = 27 more regenerations a year your way times 15 lbs = 405 lbs more salt/yr, your way; plus any cost for the extra water use if he is on city water, and maybe higher sewage rates if charged based on his water bill.

With mine he uses a resin cleaner about once every 4 to 6 weeks that costs about $15.yr. 405 lbs/40 lb bags = 10 extra bags at say $5 each equals $50 more/yr - my $15 = $35/yr more your way. And he'll probably have to use a resin cleaner anyway.

tnewman10
12-10-2009, 05:19 PM
ONE FINAL QUESTION, before yall come to FIST-A-CUFFS.. LOL.... What are the differences in the aqua systems softeners I first mentioned compared to all the other softeners? Just marketing?

Gary Slusser
12-10-2009, 10:11 PM
Yes, it's just marketing and giving the opportunity for the customer to take the valve off the tank and in to the dealer for service.

The truth is that anyone with the desire and a pair of adjustable pliers can totally replace all 5 replaceable parts on a Clack WS-1 control valve and have their water back on in under 30 minutes. It was designed to be the fastest and easiest to repair, and it is.

I have sold over 1300 in six yrs next month and have had only 28 warranty problems.

Gary Slusser
12-11-2009, 10:33 AM
There you go putting words in my mouth again. Who said I would use 15 lbs of salt? You did! Let's just agree to disagree. Whata say?
Actually it was YOU that said
Originally Posted by george57 http://terrylove.com/forums/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://terrylove.com/forums/showthread.php?p=237481#post237481)
I didn't plan on getting more than 30k out of it.
*************

Now I know you have to set the salt dose at 15lbs to regenerate 30K in YOUR one cuft volume of regular mesh resin (32K) softener. I also know that YOU SHOULD KNOW THAT.

So I didn't put words in your mouth as you're now whining about, again.

I commented on exactly what YOU said. So live with it as you make your customer live with very poor salt efficiency in your small'n most likely undersized softeners.

Or, learn how to do this stuff right instead of mistakenly thinking you're right and I'm wrong.

BTW, who's right is easily proven by reading any spec sheet for the resin you sell.

Gary Slusser
12-12-2009, 10:15 AM
If I don't plan on using 30k, how in the world am I going to use 15 lbs of salt?
This is what I mean by saying you are putting words in my mouth. Every time I add to the post, you seem to bash. You can't even agree to disagree.
That's OK with me. Then you will be regenerating much more frequently than 30K and 15 lbs would require.

So tell us what you would use as the salt dose lbs and the K of capacity, and how frequently it would regenerate.

Gary Slusser
12-15-2009, 09:32 AM
Why do you care what I do? Why do you always bust my balls? Anytime post, you gotta bust my balls about something. Why? Can't I post just as others without you making some commet? The only reason I can think of is that I must be a threat to you.
I care because in most cases you give incorrect information, as in this thread when your first reply says;

12-07-2009, 08:49 PM george57 (http://terrylove.com/forums/member.php?u=36689) http://terrylove.com/forums/images/statusicon/user_online.gif DIY Junior Member Join Date: Oct 2009 Location: tx Posts: 19 http://terrylove.com/forums/images/icons/icon1.gif

You may want to look into non electronic models. Some softeners with electronics tends to have problems that only a service tech can fix. If you want to do it yourself, look into the mechnical metered unit.
.**********

The incorrect (dishonest?) part there is the "... electronics... problems only a service tech can fix". Name me one brand or model of control valve that ONLY a service guy can fix; or that a DIYer can't fix.

And then you go on from there proposing he only needs a 1.0 cuft (32K) when you have no idea of how many bathrooms or the type of fixtures are in them. So you had no idea what his peak demand flow rate is because you don't think you need to size for the peak demand gpm, and you're wrong again.

As to you being a threat to me, I don't think so because I know the pie is large enough for all of us and if you build enough trust and respect to outsell me, good for you but IMO, you have a ways to go.

Gary Slusser
12-15-2009, 10:24 PM
I have had well over 10 service calls on Sears, Eco, Autotrol and even Fleck because the customer got into the computer. It is my opinon about the computers and I believe I have the right to voice my opinon without you saying negitive things about it. Remember, you can't even agree to disagree.
Yes people screw up the programming of their control valve, regardless if it is electronic or mechanical metered or a time clock day timer. That's why I've always given my customers the programming instructions and their data. And I did that when I was a local dealer.

But that's a bit different than saying "Some softeners with electronics tends to have problems that only a service tech can fix."

I don't see that statement as an opinon, but I do agree to disagree with you.

tnewman10
12-29-2009, 11:04 PM
Hi Gary, I talked with you on the phone today and decided to go with the Clack, I just placed my order online via your site... Thanks for the help, Ted... I will tell everyone how great the softener is after I get her hooked up.

Peter Griffin
12-30-2009, 04:58 AM
Super. Glad you were able to come to a solution after having to endure all the controversy. Thanks for letting us know how things work out.

Gary Slusser
12-30-2009, 07:19 AM
Hi Gary, I talked with you on the phone today and decided to go with the Clack, I just placed my order online via your site... Thanks for the help, Ted... I will tell everyone how great the softener is after I get her hooked up.
Thank you. It's been ordered and it should ship today and you should get it tomorrow.

ibjamin
12-31-2009, 02:50 PM
OK, I need a new water softener also. The Sears one I've had for 15 years is about done with. I've had to fix it too often and want something better.

We're on a Municipal well/city water. 17 gpg hardness, 0.2ppm iron, 0 mang, 0.5ppm fluoride (natural), Chlorine - trace to .02ppm. Using water bills for the last 2 years it appears we average about 160 gallons a day (when not using irrigation). 2 adults in home. SFR is fairly high. 3 bedroom, 2 bath but may do the basement which would add 2 bedrooms and 2 baths.

1" pipe from street, through a 3/4" meter (have a underground sprinkler system, not softened). 1" copper pipe to the softener. Would like to run 1" through the softener so it would never be a flow limiter.

Used Gary's sizing calculators and it comes up with 22.8K size with 1.5 cu ft resin. I'm just confused about the results. 1.5 cu ft resin is associated with a 48k size softner. Why so big? Other sites that have tables/calculators say to use around a 24K softener.

I don't mind getting a bigger softener (in case I add more baths) but won't it not regenerate for a very long time? Like 2 weeks?

Thanks,

George

Akpsdvan
12-31-2009, 03:03 PM
OK, I need a new water softener also. The Sears one I've had for 15 years is about done with. I've had to fix it too often and want something better.

We're on a Municipal well/city water. 17 gpg hardness, 0.2ppm iron, 0 mang, 0.5ppm fluoride (natural), Chlorine - trace to .02ppm. Using water bills for the last 2 years it appears we average about 160 gallons a day (when not using irrigation). 2 adults in home. SFR is fairly high. 3 bedroom, 2 bath but may do the basement which would add 2 bedrooms and 2 baths.

1" pipe from street, through a 3/4" meter (have a underground sprinkler system, not softened). 1" copper pipe to the softener. Would like to run 1" through the softener so it would never be a flow limiter.

Used Gary's sizing calculators and it comes up with 22.8K size with 1.5 cu ft resin. I'm just confused about the results. 1.5 cu ft resin is associated with a 48k size softner. Why so big? Other sites that have tables/calculators say to use around a 24K softener.

I don't mind getting a bigger softener (in case I add more baths) but won't it not regenerate for a very long time? Like 2 weeks?

Thanks,

George

Big reason for the 1.5 is the Flow rate. When you start adding up the fixture count in your home at what could be 4 bath + kitchen + laundry . So while the 1.0 cubic had the cap to do the job it falls short on flow rate.


Flow rate is so often over looked when a system of any kind goes in.
Not only the needed flow rate in the house, but the flow rate from either the private well or city.
To often I have seen a system that needs 10gpm for backwash and the well at best is doing 5gpm.. some thing is not going to work very well.

Gary Slusser
12-31-2009, 10:27 PM
OK, I need a new water softener also.

We're on a Municipal well/city water. 17 gpg hardness, 0.2ppm iron, 0 mang, 0.5ppm fluoride (natural), Chlorine - trace to .02ppm. Using water bills for the last 2 years it appears we average about 160 gallons a day (when not using irrigation). 2 adults in home. SFR is fairly high. 3 bedroom, 2 bath but may do the basement which would add 2 bedrooms and 2 baths.

Used Gary's sizing calculators and it comes up with 22.8K size with 1.5 cu ft resin. I'm just confused about the results. 1.5 cu ft resin is associated with a 48k size softner. Why so big? Other sites that have tables/calculators say to use around a 24K softener.

I don't mind getting a bigger softener (in case I add more baths) but won't it not regenerate for a very long time? Like 2 weeks?
You need to go back to those pages and study more... especially the sizing page.

The constant SFR gpm of a softener is dictated by the volume of resin. That gpm has to be higher than your peak demand gpm or the softener can not remove all the hardness in the water. You do not yet know what your peak demand is. The SFR of a 1.5 cuft softener is 12 gpm. A "24K" is a 3/4 cuft and has a constant SFR of 6.75 gpm. The type of fixtures in the bathrooms usually dictate the peak demand.

To get 24K out of 3/4 cuft of resin, you need to set the salt dose at the max of 15 lbs/cuft (11.25lbs). The need for 22.8K and using a 1.0 cuft requires roughly 8.7 lbs, in a 1.5 cuft, 6.8lbs.. And the 22.8 gets you a regeneration on average once every 8 days based on 1341 gallons on the meter. A 3/4 cuft doesn't come close in salt or water efficiency and is way undersized for 2 or 4 bathrooms.

For more on this you'd have to call me.

Skip Wolverton
01-01-2010, 07:56 AM
Call me old school, but I have seen a 1 cu ft unit do just fine in your case. I've been servicing and installing units for around 20 years and have not seen hardness bleed through like what is talked about here. And I have let it be known that I prefer a Fleck valve over any other out there. I just don't like electronics on water softeners. I have seen too many problems with them. I have own one and still don't like them.

Peter Griffin
01-01-2010, 08:41 AM
I come up with 48,000 also.

Gary Slusser
01-01-2010, 11:37 AM
Call me old school, but I have seen a 1 cu ft unit do just fine in your case. I've been servicing and installing units for around 20 years and have not seen hardness bleed through like what is talked about here. And I have let it be known that I prefer a Fleck valve over any other out there. I just don't like electronics on water softeners. I have seen too many problems with them. I have own one and still don't like them.
What salt dose would you use for a 1 cuft?

How frequently would your 1 cuft regenerate?

I used to feel the same about electronic control valves but changed from the Fleck 5600 mechanical metered to the Clack WS-1 CS electronic and have had fewer than a dozen electronic type problems in over 1300 sales over 6 yrs next month.

Akpsdvan
01-01-2010, 12:05 PM
Years ago I came up with a spread sheet with the 1.0, 1.5, and 1.8 cubic foot units with the different salt levels.

I use a Turbulator in the units that I do, so that has less head room or less water for the down flow brine to go through.

It was a bit of an Eye opener to see that even with changes to the iron, hardness and possible Mn... that the 1.5 more times than not was better on salt.

Strange as it might sound the 1.8 was almost a copy of the 1.0 cubic unit.

I have been using the Fleck 2510 for 12 years, most of the time the 3200 timer on it , either day or meter... bulet prof... The early SE control was not that good , but it has gotten better over the years.

One thing that I like about the SE or the new SXT is that it can do either gallons or days.

Yes I do know that the WS-1 with its Elec control can do the same thing.

The main reason for me staying with the Fleck line is the ease of cleaning the valve because of the Iron that I have to deal with... Iron build up is easier to clean than other valves that I have had to work on over the years.

Gary Slusser
01-01-2010, 01:28 PM
Years ago I came up with a spread sheet with the 1.0, 1.5, and 1.8 cubic foot units with the different salt levels.

I use a Turbulator in the units that I do, so that has less head room or less water for the down flow brine to go through.

It was a bit of an Eye opener to see that even with changes to the iron, hardness and possible Mn... that the 1.5 more times than not was better on salt.

The main reason for me staying with the Fleck line is the ease of cleaning the valve because of the Iron that I have to deal with... Iron build up is easier to clean than other valves that I have had to work on over the years.
Yes, more resin at the same lbs of salt as in a smaller softener, gets you higher available capacity, or, keep the same capacity as the smaller softener and reduce the salt lbs and you increase the salt efficiency. I don't think biermech/Skip Wolverton gets that but any resin speck sheet shows it.

How do you get more "headroom" (freeboard) with a Turbulator dist tube when you have the same volume of resin in the tank, especially when you can't use a gravel underbed? No gravel means more freeboard (distance from the top of the resin to the top of the tank).

How is the 2510 easier to clean iron out of than other control valves?

All the seals and spacers in a Clack come out as one piece in 2 seconds and the 2510 has 5-6 seals and 4-5 spacers that all come out and go in individually. Also, Fleck control valves have a separate brine valve, Clack got rid of the separate brine valve and its gearing and has a small brine piston on the far end of the main piston and its seals and spacers come out/go in with the main piston's seals and spacers stack. I tell my customers how to prevent iron/rust buildup.

Akpsdvan
01-01-2010, 01:50 PM
Yes, more resin at the same lbs of salt as in a smaller softener, gets you higher available capacity, or, keep the same capacity as the smaller softener and reduce the salt lbs and you increase the salt efficiency. I don't think biermech/Skip Wolverton gets that but any resin speck sheet shows it.

How do you get more "headroom" (freeboard) with a Turbulator dist tube when you have the same volume of resin in the tank, especially when you can't use a gravel underbed? No gravel means more freeboard (distance from the top of the resin to the top of the tank).

How is the 2510 easier to clean iron out of than other control valves?

All the seals and spacers in a Clack come out as one piece in 2 seconds and the 2510 has 5-6 seals and 4-5 spacers that all come out and go in individually. Also, Fleck control valves have a separate brine valve, Clack got rid of the separate brine valve and its gearing and has a small brine piston on the far end of the main piston and its seals and spacers come out/go in with the main piston's seals and spacers stack. I tell my customers how to prevent iron/rust buildup.

On the freeboard, with a normal set up a 8x44 tank would have .6 cubic feet of resin and gravel bed giving 17" freeboard and a back wash of 3gpm(no upper basket)
With the turbo the same tank can take 1.0 cubic feet no gravel and lower the freeboard to 10" and backwash rate down to 2gpm.

Seals and spacers as one unit... Culligan? oh that is a pain if iron builds up ...

spacers breaking... and then one has to replace the hole cage..

Yes there are 5 spacers to remove, but if one holds onto used ones, if one gets broke because of iron build up and not coming out easy but in parts, one does not need a full seal/spacer kit, just the one.

Separate brine valve can at times be a pain I will grant you that.

Most of the time I will not use the 5600, while it is a great valve, the older timer control has no way of changing any of the time settings, the 2510,2750,2850 etc... all use the same 3200 assembly for the timer or the same SE or now SXT control..
With the cold water that I have here along with iron levels that can be 50ppm having the ability to change pins for BW/BR/RR/BF often times is the difference between a unit working right or wrong.

ibjamin
01-01-2010, 02:00 PM
I'm confused about salt dose/effiency. How does that vary? I thought a gallon of water "melts" 3lbs salt. So when you say vary the salt dose, are you referring to how much water goes into the brine tank?

So why does a smaller amount of resin need more water (brine) to regenerate it?

George

Akpsdvan
01-01-2010, 03:54 PM
I'm confused about salt dose/effiency. How does that vary? I thought a gallon of water "melts" 3lbs salt. So when you say vary the salt dose, are you referring to how much water goes into the brine tank?

So why does a smaller amount of resin need more water (brine) to regenerate it?

George

1 gallon=3lbs salt, after about 2-3 hours.

When we are talking about efficiency of the Resin is this.
Each Maker of Resin as a chart... x amount of resin with x salt yields a capacity.
There is also a curve , kinda like the bell curve that the teacher might have used in school.
There is a point on that curve that one gets the best bang for the buck if you will..
Most of the time it is 6lbs per cube, now while one can push 12lbs per cube the gain in capacity at the upper end is not that much, so why push that extra salt when the gain in capacity is only a 1000 or so... That for me is why I figure my units at the most efficient point on the curve.
There are times that I will push the upper end, but that is only for a few, when they need 0ppm hardness from start to finish, and the price of salt is not a factor in operation of the unit...

Clear as Mud?

Bob999
01-01-2010, 04:48 PM
This link is for technical data for SST-60 resin. Page 4 of the paper includes the salt rate/capacity curves for SST-60 resin and for standard resin.

www.purolite.com/customized/uploads/pdfs/SST60.pdf

Gary Slusser
01-01-2010, 05:30 PM
I'm confused about salt dose/effiency. How does that vary? I thought a gallon of water "melts" 3lbs salt. So when you say vary the salt dose, are you referring to how much water goes into the brine tank?

So why does a smaller amount of resin need more water (brine) to regenerate it?
Every softener in the world has an adjustable K of capacity because they all have a means to set a salt dose in lbs (or the volume of water to dissolve 3lbs/gal) used per regeneration.

So a given number of lbs regenerates X K of capacity; I. E. 15 lbs regenerates the max of 30K/cuft of regular mesh resin. Nine lbs 24K, 6 lbs 20K etc..

If you want to know salt efficiency you divide the K of capacity by the lbs used per regeneration and to compare one softener to another, you need to know how many regenerations in a given period of time, like a week.

A smaller softener and a larger one can both use the same amount of water to regenerate with or, either can use more or less than the other. It depends on how many minutes each cycle position runs for and what gpm the drain line flow control (DLFC) is used which depends on what type and volume of resin is used, the water quality being treated, the salt dose water for the salt dose setting and, if softened water is used for the regeneration as in a twin tank type softener.

Peter Griffin
01-01-2010, 05:36 PM
Nice post Gary, good explanation.

ibjamin
01-02-2010, 11:34 AM
OK, I think I get it. Just throwing numbers out here. 1 cu ft of resin can hold 30K max. 10lbs of salt will get back 20K but to get the next 10K you have to use 15lbs. So you have to use more salt to get the entire 30K.

Or you can use a larger softner with more resin. So I would use roughly 24K of the 48K capacity of 1.5cu ft resin in 8 days. But when I regenerate, I only have to regenerate the 24K that was used and that puts me on the steep side of the salt efficientcy curve. So I use less salt, have higher SFR, and the extra capacity I might need in the future.

Sounds good. Thanks!

George

Skip Wolverton
01-02-2010, 01:17 PM
The formula I learned back in 1990 is 1 cubic foot of resin =
30,000 grains @ 15 lbs salt
20,000 grains @ 8 lbs salt (it is actually 6 lbs but you have to deduct a reserve so the 8 lbs salt has the reserve buildt in)

A 1 cf softener:

20k/17 gpg hardness = 1176 gal between regen
1176/2 people/75 gpd useage =7.8 days between regen
30 days in a month/7.8 = 3.8 regens per month
3.8 * 8 lbs salt per regen =30.76 lbs per month

A 1.5 cf softener:

30k/17 gpg hardness = 1764 gal between regen
1764/2 people/75 gpd useage =11.76 days between regen
30 days in a month/11.76 = 2.5 regens per month
2.5 * 12 lbs salt per regen =30 lbs per month

With iron in the water, the longer run between regens, the higher chance all the iron will not be rinsed off the resin. That means with a bigger unit, you may have to back down on the gallon count.

Bob999
01-02-2010, 01:29 PM
Here is another perspective on SFR that is taken from another website:

I have a paper from Fleck that states as follows:

for Series 9000 Model KO-R-320 32,000 Grains 1.00 Cu. Ft. Mineral:

Peak flow is 19 GPM = 4309 Lit./Hr.

Continuous flow is 14 GPM = 3175

However, resin manufacterrurs define the continuous flow rate through 1 liter of cation resin as 40-42 Lit. of Water/Hr./ Lit. Of resin which brings us to only 5.24 GPM = 1188 Lit./Hr. for Model KO-R-320 32,000 Grains 1.00 Cu. Ft. Mineral.


Resin manufacturers are always more conservative than equipment manufactures. If you want the best possible results in almost all circumstances use the resin manufacturers specifications. Most of the time the equipment manufacturer's specs will work acceptably. I recently saw specs for a 2 cubic ft 13" softener at something like 40 gpm peak flow with a 1 1/2" valve. This seems way out of line to me. You might get the water through it but how soft would it be and how long would the resin last?


You have no mistake. The valve can handle that flow, butas you have correctly noticed the resin manufacturers specify usually about 5gpm per cubic foot. I have always used this rule and called it my rule of 5. A softener can handle slightly higher (peak flow) rates for a short time before hardness leakage will occur.
This is one of the biggest problems in the retail arena since Big Box companies and unscrupulous salespeople alike will not take this into true account when selling to larger families.
I can't tell you how many 3500 to 5000 square foot homes I have seen 3/4 and 1 inch valves on 1 cubic foot tanks installed. Many times reducing from 1 1/4" to 1 1/2" plumbing.
You calculation is more correct for sizing and will serve you and your customers much better for the long run.

There is a definite limit to how fast you can flow water through ion exchange resin. Flowing too fast will result in leakage of ions. You can exceed the resin manufacturers specifications but the quality of the water produced will not be as good. For softening if you flow too fast that will result in higher hardness leakage. Many equipment manufacturers do have high flow rates showing in their specifications for softeners. For residential applications that may not be a problem because most home owners are happy of the hardness of their water is less than 1.5 grains per gallon. That can usually be achieved even when flowing faster than twice the resin specification. However if you follow Jim Wark's recommendations above you will never go wrong.

For commercial/industrial applications it is always best to match the end user's flow rate to the resin manufacturer's flow rate. Most commercial/industrial end user's are sensitive to hardness leakage.

Gary Slusser
01-02-2010, 07:26 PM
OK, I think I get it. Just throwing numbers out here. 1 cu ft of resin can hold 30K max. 10lbs of salt will get back 20K but to get the next 10K you have to use 15lbs. So you have to use more salt to get the entire 30K.

Or you can use a larger softner with more resin. So I would use roughly 24K of the 48K capacity of 1.5cu ft resin in 8 days. But when I regenerate, I only have to regenerate the 24K that was used and that puts me on the steep side of the salt efficientcy curve. So I use less salt, have higher SFR, and the extra capacity I might need in the future.

Sounds good. Thanks!

George
It takes 15 lbs to get 30K/cuft of regular mesh resin. Nine lbs gets you 24K and 6lbs gets you 20K. In a 1.5 cuft 6lbs/cuft is 6*1.5=9lbs, gets you 30K. 15lbs*1.5=22.5lbs and 45K.

Akpsdvan
01-02-2010, 08:21 PM
19gpm for 1 cubic?????????

was I sleeping in class that day?

Gary Slusser
01-02-2010, 09:02 PM
The formula I learned back in 1990 is 1 cubic foot of resin =
30,000 grains @ 15 lbs salt
20,000 grains @ 8 lbs salt (it is actually 6 lbs but you have to deduct a reserve so the 8 lbs salt has the reserve buildt in)

A 1 cf softener:

20k/17 gpg hardness = 1176 gal between regen
1176/2 people/75 gpd useage =7.8 days between regen
30 days in a month/7.8 = 3.8 regens per month
3.8 * 8 lbs salt per regen =30.76 lbs per month

A 1.5 cf softener:

30k/17 gpg hardness = 1764 gal between regen
1764/2 people/75 gpd useage =11.76 days between regen
30 days in a month/11.76 = 2.5 regens per month
2.5 * 12 lbs salt per regen =30 lbs per month

With iron in the water, the longer run between regens, the higher chance all the iron will not be rinsed off the resin. That means with a bigger unit, you may have to back down on the gallon count.
Why would you use 30K in a 1.5 cuft when you only need 20K in this example?

In my 1.5 cuft I'd get 20K and a 1000 gals to keep with the suggested 'regenerate once every 7-9 days'. I'd use 5.1 lbs per regeneration, or 19.38 lbs per month. Or 1274 lbs saved over 10 years compared to your figures.

I've been doing it that way for many years and I have very satisfied customers.

Gary Slusser
01-02-2010, 09:42 PM
Here is another perspective on SFR that is taken from another website:

I have a paper from Fleck that states as follows:

for Series 9000 Model KO-R-320 32,000 Grains 1.00 Cu. Ft. Mineral:

Peak flow is 19 GPM = 4309 Lit./Hr.

Continuous flow is 14 GPM = 3175

However, resin manufacterrurs define the continuous flow rate through 1 liter of cation resin as 40-42 Lit. of Water/Hr./ Lit. Of resin which brings us to only 5.24 GPM = 1188 Lit./Hr. for Model KO-R-320 32,000 Grains 1.00 Cu. Ft. Mineral.
Those figures are at a 15 psi pressure drop across the softner. The control valve and softener have different SFR figures. Resin manufacturers state the SFR gpm of 1 cuft of their resin. That is the figure that dictates/controls the constant SFR of a softener. The resin manufacturers' SFR for their resins are very conservative because they are set for commercial/industrial softeners where leakage in ppm or mg/l is very critical. That means residential softeners using the same resin get a much higher constant SFR gpm because residential softeners deal with gpg (grains per gallon) which is 17.1 ppm or mg/l. The WQA says 1 gpg in the softened water is the goal for residential, I say 0 gpg.


Resin manufacturers are always more conservative than equipment manufactures. If you want the best possible results in almost all circumstances use the resin manufacturers specifications. Most of the time the equipment manufacturer's specs will work acceptably. I recently saw specs for a 2 cubic ft 13" softener at something like 40 gpm peak flow with a 1 1/2" valve. This seems way out of line to me. You might get the water through it but how soft would it be and how long would the resin last?
Using the resin manufacturers' figures for residential softeners will cause you to over size softeners which leads to channeling of the bed and hardness leakage. The only cure for that is to prematurely (manually) regenerate the softener.

The volume of resin in the tank dictates what size tank can be used for a given cuft volume of resin. The SFR of the control valve tells dealers/manufacturers what size tank the control valve can service. The cuft of resin also dictates the constant SFR gpm of the whole softener.

The Fleck 5600 can service a 12" (2.0 cuft) tank/softener. The Clack WS-1 up to a 21" (7.5 cuft) tank/softener.

Akpsdvan
01-02-2010, 10:14 PM
It is all a fine dance on the head of a pin.

Sizing the resin for both a good flow rate, cap. taking in the numbers iron, mn, hardness...

To little and the higher the psi drop, to much and channeling ...

If Iron is in the mix, then to long and iron and resin get to know each other TO WELL.... and that is not good.

Some of this is in the books and some of it is what one has found out the hard way..

Water temp also comes into play in what kind of flow rates one can get, how much Iron one can remove with a softener, along with the flow rate for the backwash.

Bob999
01-03-2010, 06:14 AM
This question is for Gary Slusser and Akpsdvan.

What constitutes an oversized softener which leads to channeling? What are the parameters of an oversized softener which leads to channeling?

Most literature charaterizes softener size either on the basis of flow per cubic foot of resin or flow per square foot of tank size. Residential flow rates are variable--from a gallon or two per minute for a single faucet to ?? depending upon the number of fixtures and size of piping. So how does one determine when a softener is oversized?

Akpsdvan
01-03-2010, 10:48 AM
This question is for Gary Slusser and Akpsdvan.

What constitutes an oversized softener which leads to channeling? What are the parameters of an oversized softener which leads to channeling?

Most literature charaterizes softener size either on the basis of flow per cubic foot of resin or flow per square foot of tank size. Residential flow rates are variable--from a gallon or two per minute for a single faucet to ?? depending upon the number of fixtures and size of piping. So how does one determine when a softener is oversized?

Say a 2 bath house that has a flow rate of no more than 10gpm because of a large tube. If one then puts in 3 cubic foot unit, there is every chance that there is going to be channeling going on. The water is going to be looking for the path with no to the least resistance, thus channeling and it will happen more if the flow rate is down around 1-2 gpm

Here is one for you, years ago the State of Alaska told a community home owner association that they needed 120pgm, after putting a digital meter in place and monitoring it different times of the day for a month the best that was seen was 20gpm so they where able to go with some thing in the middle 65gpm.

Channeling is not just for the down flow, but also for the backwash. To much media could also lead to channeling on the backwash if the gpm is not there for the lifting of the media.

Gary Slusser
01-03-2010, 11:41 AM
This question is for Gary Slusser and Akpsdvan.

What constitutes an oversized softener which leads to channeling? What are the parameters of an oversized softener which leads to channeling?

Most literature charaterizes softener size either on the basis of flow per cubic foot of resin or flow per square foot of tank size. Residential flow rates are variable--from a gallon or two per minute for a single faucet to ?? depending upon the number of fixtures and size of piping. So how does one determine when a softener is oversized?
What Akpsdvan said.

It comes down to an accurate educated guess. The key is determining peak demand gpm. Then using hard figures for your constant SFR gpm for the volume of resin that just exceeds the peak demand gpm.

Going over the peak too far would get you into channeling IF there were sufficient small flows like a home office or other full time daily use with lots of toilet flushes, rinsing dishes or glasses of water, ice making, an RO etc..

abernat
01-15-2010, 08:21 PM
'nother water softener sizing question.

We have an old softener that's on its last legs. As a reasonably handy homeowner I'm looking to replace it. I looked at Gary's web site for sizing but the numbers I'm getting are... odd. Can someone double-check these for me?

1) Hardness. I live in Madison, WI, and the water reports for the municipal water are:
Hardness - 17gpg
Iron - 0.20 ppm
Manganese - 14 ppb; I assume that's 0.014 ppm?

So that would give an adjusted hardness of (17) + (2*0.2) + (4*.014) ~ 17.5 ~ 18 grains, right?

2) Water usage. From our water bill we use 178 gallons per day, so that's 178 * 18 = 3,204 grains per day, and over 8 days that's 25,600 grains. Now some of that water is unsoftened, but would we want a 24k or 32k capacity?

3) Resin tank size. We have two baths, two kitchens (a 2-flat), one dishwasher, and one front-loading (so theoretically low flow) clothes washer. From the 1997 UPC (which Madison follows) I get an estimated 17 gpm, which seems high. This is from:
2x bathtubs = 8.0 wsfu
2x lavatories = 2.0 wsfu
2x HET = 5.0 wsfu
2x kitchen sink = 3.0 wsfu
1x dishwasher = 1.5 wsfu
1x clothes washer = 4.0 wsfu
1x hose bibb - unsoftened = 0.0 wsfu
Total = 23.5 wsfu ~ 17.0 gpm

I take it those numbers are assuming some average use. We rarely use the tubs and have low-flow showerheads; also, a front-loading washer. Do either of those affect the flow rate?

Anyway, as an exercise, if I use the numbers as given I get the following:

Resin: 2.5 ft^3 for 17gpm SFR

But using the hardness/salt calculation as given on Gary's site I get 1.5 ft^3 for ~30k grains of hardness.

So which would we use? 1.5 or 2.5 ft^3?

Thanks!

... as a note, if you misread the water report as manganese in parts per million instead of parts per billion, you get _really_ hard water.

Akpsdvan
01-15-2010, 09:04 PM
17gpm if every thing was on at the same time... chance of that ?

I would go with the 1.5 cubic foot unit , 10gpm with a peak if needed it could get to the 17 with a pressure drop of 25psi....

17 grains is getting up there, I have a few around here that are in the 20's or low 30's...

Just my thoughts on the matter

Skip Wolverton
01-16-2010, 04:24 AM
What I have seen from my customers with iron is that if the run time (days between regens) is too long, they get a iron colored water right after a regen. I would reccommend a 32k unit and regen every 6 days @ 8# salt vs every 8 days @ 12# Salt.

Gary Slusser
01-16-2010, 01:03 PM
'nother water softener sizing question.

We have an old softener that's on its last legs. As a reasonably handy homeowner I'm looking to replace it. I looked at Gary's web site for sizing but the numbers I'm getting are... odd. Can someone double-check these for me?

1) Hardness. I live in Madison, WI, and the water reports for the municipal water are:
Hardness - 17gpg
Iron - 0.20 ppm
Manganese - 14 ppb; I assume that's 0.014 ppm?

So that would give an adjusted hardness of (17) + (2*0.2) + (4*.014) ~ 17.5 ~ 18 grains, right?

2) Water usage. From our water bill we use 178 gallons per day, so that's 178 * 18 = 3,204 grains per day, and over 8 days that's 25,600 grains. Now some of that water is unsoftened, but would we want a 24k or 32k capacity?

3) Resin tank size. We have two baths, two kitchens (a 2-flat), one dishwasher, and one front-loading (so theoretically low flow) clothes washer. From the 1997 UPC (which Madison follows) I get an estimated 17 gpm, which seems high. This is from:
2x bathtubs = 8.0 wsfu
2x lavatories = 2.0 wsfu
2x HET = 5.0 wsfu
2x kitchen sink = 3.0 wsfu
1x dishwasher = 1.5 wsfu
1x clothes washer = 4.0 wsfu
1x hose bibb - unsoftened = 0.0 wsfu
Total = 23.5 wsfu ~ 17.0 gpm

I take it those numbers are assuming some average use. We rarely use the tubs and have low-flow showerheads; also, a front-loading washer. Do either of those affect the flow rate?

Anyway, as an exercise, if I use the numbers as given I get the following:

Resin: 2.5 ft^3 for 17gpm SFR

But using the hardness/salt calculation as given on Gary's site I get 1.5 ft^3 for ~30k grains of hardness.

So which would we use? 1.5 or 2.5 ft^3?

Thanks!

... as a note, if you misread the water report as manganese in parts per million instead of parts per billion, you get _really_ hard water.
You are confusing things. There are two parts to sizing a softener correctly.

1. The regenerated capacity/salt use efficiency stated in K grains and lbs of salt used per regeneration.

2. The constant SFR gpm of the softener's volume of resin which must be greater than the maximum peak demand flow rate gpm run through the softener.

For number 1... all softeners have an adjustable K of capacity because they all allow setting a varied amount of salt used per regeneration. To get 30K in a 1 cuft of regular mesh resin you need a 15 lb salt dose per regeneration. In a 1.5 cuft you get 30K with only 9 lbs; 6 lbs less per regeneration; or a max of 45 K with 22.5 lbs..

I. E. Skip here says "a 32K" (1.0 cuft/9 gpm constant SFR) but then he is not setting the salt dose to be able to regenerate 30K... at 8 lbs he won't get 24K in real life. And, he is going to get you into a regeneration at 6 days instead of 8 days so he'll cost you (365/6 and 8) 61-46= 15 more regenerations per year. That will use substantially more city water that you pay for and more salt. His 6 days @ 8 lbs* 61= 488 lbs/yr - 46* 8.5= 391/yr or 97 lbs more and if I did it you'd save 46* 8=368 so 488-368= 120lbs saved. Times say 10 yrs and that is literally over a half ton of salt saved.

For number 2... you say you need 17 gpm (I'd have to go over that with you because that is higher than you need for 2 bathrooms because you're using the code which is done as if you have water running at every fixture in the house all at once, and no one lives like that, and I don't size like that) so by code you'd need a 2.5 cuft softener because it has an 18 gpm constant SFR.

That is not the SFR of the softener at X psi pressure loss.

That is the max gpm the resin can remove all the hardness from and the gpm @ 15 psi pressure loss you would get many more gpm through the softener but, the water will not be 0 gpg soft; there will be some hardness left in it. That hardness is called hardness leakage, and no one should buy a softener that isn't going to constantly remove all their hardness. Nothing but the cuft volume of resin controls that SFR.

So... once you know the peak demand gpm of the house, then you select the cuft volume of resin to provide the constant SFR needed which sets the cuft size, then you set the salt dose lbs to cover the K of capacity you need for a regeneration on average once every 7-9 days.

Your softener doesn't have be that large (2.5 cuft/18gpm SFR) and you only need 27K of capacity. So... 9 lbs in a 1.5 cuft gets you 30K and you would set the lbs at 8.5 lbs for 27K (with 12 gpm constant SFR) or go to a 2.0 cuft and set it at 27K @ 8 lbs. and get a constant SFR of 13 gpm.

Gary Slusser
01-16-2010, 01:06 PM
What I have seen from my customers with iron is that if the run time (days between regens) is too long, they get a iron colored water right after a regen. I would reccommend a 32k unit and regen every 6 days @ 8# salt vs every 8 days @ 12# Salt.
That's because you sell a mechanical metered Fleck 5600 that does not allow you to change the length of minutes that your backwash, rapid rinse and final rinse run for.

Skip Wolverton
01-17-2010, 05:27 AM
That's because you sell a mechanical metered Fleck 5600 that does not allow you to change the length of minutes that your backwash, rapid rinse and final rinse run for.

That's because I see the control boards lasting an average of 4 years. Had a service call Fri that the board had to be replaced. It was only 6 years old.

tnewman10
01-17-2010, 10:21 AM
Finally got my softener installed and up and running... I can tell the difference in water, nothing like a clean shave in the morning with soft water... The instruction were super detailed... My only recommendation is to merge all of the pictures and text file of instructions into a pdf file so everything is all wrapped up in order in a nice need tidy file (I work in the technology field, LOL)... Picked up some of the super iron out Gary recommended for the softener and started cleaning up fixtures the washer and toilets around the house.. Man that stuff works great, if there were only a way of running that stuff through all the house plumbing easily to clean it out... Had my first regen the other night and everything went perfectly..

Gary Slusser
01-17-2010, 10:29 AM
That's because I see the control boards lasting an average of 4 years. Had a service call Fri that the board had to be replaced. It was only 6 years old.
That's because you work on Kenmore and other big box brand cabinet models.

I've sold over 1300 Clack valves and had 8-9 circuit board problems in 6 yrs; since Jan 21 2004. They have been installed indoors and outdoors all over the US and Canada, including Alaska and one or two in Puerto Rico.

Akpsdvan
01-17-2010, 10:46 AM
Mr G is correct on the Kenmore, GE, Polor Star control boards, there must be some thing like a kill switch in there that after x years it goes out...

There are some Fleck and Clack Control boards that are 8+ years old a still going strong.

Part of any Digital control challenge is Humidity, if where that board is at has more humidity in the air, it may not last as long.

Skip Wolverton
01-17-2010, 02:16 PM
That's because you work on Kenmore and other big box brand cabinet models.

I've sold over 1300 Clack valves and had 8-9 circuit board problems in 6 yrs; since Jan 21 2004. They have been installed indoors and outdoors all over the US and Canada, including Alaska and one or two in Puerto Rico.

I've worked on them all. All of them, Fleck, Autotrol. Eco, Sears, Culligan and Clack. I'm just saying I've seen control boards give out on the average of every 4 years.

abernat
01-18-2010, 11:57 AM
So... once you know the peak demand gpm of the house, then you select the cuft volume of resin to provide the constant SFR needed which sets the cuft size, then you set the salt dose lbs to cover the K of capacity you need for a regeneration on average once every 7-9 days.


Ahh... I see. So instead of the code (which has us running two tubs + sinks + toilets + washing machine... all at once) I want to go with what actually can happen and then possibly round up a bit. That makes a lot of sense. Thanks!

Gary Slusser
01-18-2010, 01:12 PM
Ahh... I see. So instead of the code (which has us running two tubs + sinks + toilets + washing machine... all at once) I want to go with what actually can happen and then possibly round up a bit. That makes a lot of sense. Thanks!
Yep but, actually as you know you should always follow codes, right? ..... and that will cost you dearly in many cases but especially when the code calculates as if you run every faucet, fixture and appliance in the house at once and buy water treatment sized to cover that flow rate.

geogridshorthair
02-08-2010, 06:36 PM
Gary,

thanks for your support to this thread. I have learned enough about water softeners from reading your dialog.

i would like to propose my situation to you and have you tell me which of your systems is reasonable for my project.

i want soft water in my hunting cabin. one person once or twice a week during the duck hunting season. little or no use outside of the months october to march.

the worst case useage condition will be when i take a shower. a typical shower 15 minutes and no other water useage in the cabin. other than that i will be washing dishes after dinner. i think worst case would be 3 gal/min in the shower for 15 minutes.

the water is quite hard though greater than 425ppm (25 grains i guess). No iron.

this is really a low useage environment with very hard water. And long periods of non-use.

i was going to just purchase a salt system(30k grain) like Kenmore or GE but after reading this forum i'm not sure now.

please let me know your recommendation for this application.

cost is an issue and l would like to keep cost under $400 if possible. i don't think the cost of salt is a big issue to me.

thanks for your response.

regards,

steve in southern CA

Akpsdvan
02-08-2010, 06:40 PM
Find one of the water bosses.. cheap, little ... just right for a small little used cabin..

There is a cheep GE on ****,,,, 5.00 in southern Cal...

Akpsdvan
02-10-2010, 08:35 PM
What is up with the **** I know what I typed so why the edit?
Where is the rule?