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Thread: Need a Water Softner! Which One?

  1. #31
    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    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.

  2. #32
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akpsdvan View Post
    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.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  3. #33
    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    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.

  4. #34
    DIY Junior Member ibjamin's Avatar
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    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

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ibjamin View Post
    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?

  6. #36
    DIY Senior Member Bob999's Avatar
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    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

  7. #37
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ibjamin View Post
    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.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  8. #38
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    Nice post Gary, good explanation.

  9. #39
    DIY Junior Member ibjamin's Avatar
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    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

  10. #40

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    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.

  11. #41
    DIY Senior Member Bob999's Avatar
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    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.

  12. #42
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ibjamin View Post
    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.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  13. #43
    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    19gpm for 1 cubic?????????

    was I sleeping in class that day?

  14. #44
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skip Wolverton View Post
    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 Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  15. #45
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob999 View Post
    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.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob999 View Post
    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.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

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