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Thread: Need capacity/size advice

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  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member somedumbname's Avatar
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    Default Need capacity/size advice

    I thought I should break this out into a new thread since I've decided I'm going with the Fleck 9000 SXT vs. the metered unit. I'm looking to order the system soon, but I want to get unbiased opinions on what capacity and size I need before I purchase.

    Hardness of the incoming water is around 27-30gpg. No iron, <0.5ppm chlorine, trace amounts of other contaminants. (City water).

    The problem I'm having figuring out which size to get is based on current vs. future needs. Currently, I'm the only one living in the house, occasionally having anywhere from 1-6 other people "living" here over weekends and whatnot. So for my water situation currently, it seems that the 9000 SXT twin-tank 48k gr capacity would be a good choice.

    However, it seems like if I end up having 4+ people living here on a consistent basis, the 48k gr capacity will not be very efficient, and will regen every 3-4 days. Am I correct in that assumption?

    The house is 4 br, 2.5 bath with the potential to be 5 br, 3.5 bath with a finished basement. 3400 sq ft, so there's more than enough room to have potentially 5-8 people living here once I have kids. The price difference to go up to the 64k gr twin-tank setup is an extra $170. I'm starting to think that it would make more sense to just bite the bullet and get the higher-capacity setup right now, rather than need to upgrade tanks in the future at a higher cost.

    So my questions I guess are:
    • Am I correct in looking at these capacities (48k vs 64k)?
    • Am I correct in assuming that upgrading tank capacity in the future (with the added cost of extra resin needed) would be much more expensive than the $170 up-front costs?
    • Is there any problem in having the much higher capacity now even though I would only really need it on occasion?
    • As long as I'm getting the SXT, if I'm not using capacity, what's the longest amount of time I should let water sit in the tanks? I've read anywhere from 9-14.


    Thanks in advance for any advice you can give me. Being my first house (and first experience with water softening), I'm in desperate need of expert opinions from people not trying to sell me stuff.

  2. #2
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    You soften the water you use, and regenerate for that amount of water. Whether the softener regenerates every two weeks or every other day, assuming it has a demand meter to determine WHEN it should happen, it costs you about the same either way.

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    If you go to big there is the chance of Channeling, water going the easy way through the media.

    With no Iron in the water I would stay with a unit that can handle the peak flow rate for your home.

  4. #4
    DIY Junior Member somedumbname's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice. I had not heard of channeling to this point, but after searching for it I can see how that would be a serious problem. It's just a bit confusing because it seems like every website has its own way of calculating capacity. I have been reading through all of the extremely long discussions on here going back and forth about size/capacity, and it's all somehow blindingly simple and annoyingly confusing at the same time...

    I'm guessing based on the responses that my math isn't throwing up too many red flags at least. I did notice that I didn't mention the amount of resin in the system I'm looking at. It's listed on their website as 4 cu ft of resin (2 cu ft per tank it seems?).

    So this is probably a dumb question, but if I'm only using 60-120gal/day on the 64k system, would I just reduce the lbs/cuft of salt I use? Also, if anyone has responses to the questions I listed above I would appreciate it. I'm trying to learn, but some of this is getting confusing to me due to differing opinions...

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    From what I have seen , often the capacity is the max salt per cubic foot, but that is often not the best bang for the buck..

    Drop me an IM as PM's are out ,, I have an Excel spread sheet that I did with some numbers.

  6. #6
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by somedumbname View Post
    It's just a bit confusing because it seems like every website has its own way of calculating capacity. I have been reading through all of the extremely long discussions on here going back and forth about size/capacity, and it's all somehow blindingly simple and annoyingly confusing at the same time...

    I'm guessing based on the responses that my math isn't throwing up too many red flags at least. I did notice that I didn't mention the amount of resin in the system I'm looking at. It's listed on their website as 4 cu ft of resin (2 cu ft per tank it seems?).

    So this is probably a dumb question, but if I'm only using 60-120gal/day on the 64k system, would I just reduce the lbs/cuft of salt I use? Also, if anyone has responses to the questions I listed above I would appreciate it. I'm trying to learn, but some of this is getting confusing to me due to differing opinions...
    Now careful, I sell water treatment equipment including all types of water softeners...

    You get 30K @ 15lbs of salt per cuft of regular mesh resin. There is no such thing as "High Capacity" resin; there is regular mesh, fine mesh and SST-x0 resins. The difference between two or more of the same type resin is negligible and not worth the extra money you'll pay for them. 15lbs/cuft gets you 2000 grains/lb efficiency (30,000/15=2000). 6lbs/cuft gets 3333, over 50% better efficiency. Look at like fuel mileage, the higher the better.

    All softeners have an adjustable K of capacity.

    That is because you can set the salt dose lbs at any number of lbs you want to as long as the control valve or float in the salt tank will allow that number. Just like pressing your foot on the accelerator of a vehicle to go faster or slower, you adjust the fuel efficiency.

    If two or more softeners have the same type of resin and same cuft volume of that resin and use the same lbs of salt per regeneration, they have the same salt efficiency, period.

    It doesn't matter if brining/regeneration is done down flow or up flow, what size or brand of control valve or type or brand of resin tank (polyglass, SS, FRP), or the type of softener (cabinet, two tank or twin tank) OR the brand name of the softener.

    Anyone saying otherwise either doesn't know how to program softeners or is lying about or hyping or misrepresenting what they sell and want you to buy.

    So far you have not shown a need for a twin tank type softener. A regular softener would work fine. IIRC you are talking larger than you probably need for maybe a family of 4. Although I'm not recalling what peak demand flow rate the house may have as how you use water in it so I can't get into the constant SFR size of the softener. I also don't recall your hardness etc..
    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.

  7. #7
    In the Trades Wally Hays's Avatar
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    Hardness of the incoming water is around 27-30gpg. No iron, <0.5ppm chlorine, trace amounts of other contaminants. (City water).

    The problem I'm having figuring out which size to get is based on current vs. future needs. Currently, I'm the only one living in the house, occasionally having anywhere from 1-6 other people "living" here over weekends and whatnot. So for my water situation currently, it seems that the 9000 SXT twin-tank 48k gr capacity would be a good choice.However, it seems like if I end up having 4+ people living here on a consistent basis, the 48k gr capacity will not be very efficient, and will regen every 3-4 days. Am I correct in that assumption?
    Perception is 3/4 of reality

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