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Thread: Carbon filter before or after water softener

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Bloom80's Avatar
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    Default Carbon filter before or after water softener

    We have a well and water system. Having problems with poor water pressure. We think the placement/order of the pieces may not be in correct order? Does the carbon filter go before or after the water softener?

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    If you have any amount of iron in the water I would put the carbon in AFTER the softener.
    If it is hardness and smell then it could go before the softener.

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    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    I assume the filter is a disposable cartridge type and not a backwashed type. Cartridge types if not replace frequently wil cause lower water pressure to the softener and eventual failure of the resin.

    Smell if not H2S gas doesn't harm a softener and if you have enough H2S to harm a softener you should be using a backwashed or regenerated filter.

    So I say cartridge types are the worst choice but should go after the softener if ya just hav'ta have one.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
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    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.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    I assume the filter is a disposable cartridge type and not a backwashed type. Cartridge types if not replace frequently wil cause lower water pressure to the softener and eventual failure of the resin.

    Smell if not H2S gas doesn't harm a softener and if you have enough H2S to harm a softener you should be using a backwashed or regenerated filter.

    So I say cartridge types are the worst choice but should go after the softener if ya just hav'ta have one.
    What about an upflow carbon filter such as these...http://www.ohiopurewater.com/shop/cu...cat=764&page=1

    Do they perform well enough to put before the water softener? It says the SFR is 4-6 gpm on these. Would that have any affect on sizing a water softener?

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    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    IMO if you want to remove chlorine on a whole hose basis, you shouldn't because it is in the water for a couple very good reasons. Remove it as POU, where your use the water instead of POE where the water enters the house,

    Most any house with more than one regular bathroom will want more water than 4 gpm.
    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.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    IMO if you want to remove chlorine on a whole hose basis, you shouldn't because it is in the water for a couple very good reasons. Remove it as POU, where your use the water instead of POE where the water enters the house,

    Most any house with more than one regular bathroom will want more water than 4 gpm.
    So what are the "couple very good reasons"? just curious. I know there are different shcools of thought on chlorine removal, but I want to hear every side before I make a decision.

    I know one of them is to eliminate waterborne disease, but I just figured that would not be a problem if it was removed at POE as the water doesn't have far to go after the chlorine is removed. Is that short distance in your house enough to pose a problem with manifesting waterborne diseases?


    The two reasons I WANT to remove the cholrine are:

    1. Complaints from the family of the odor and taste. I do not know exactly how much chlorine is in our city water, but it's enough for us to not want to drink the water without going through a carbon filter. I would just put in a RO in the kitchen, but even brushing teeth is a nuisance in the bathrooms with the extra chlorine.

    2. I have heard from many different sources that chlorine will shorten the resin life and in general it is best to remove the chlorine before it enters the water softener as chlorine just tears them up quicker.

    So even with a water softener AFTER the slower carbon filter, I will still only get 4gpm at each faucet in the house? In my mind it seems like it would still fucntion the same in the house until the water softener is emptied out of water, then the flow would be slowed down to 4gpm because it is depending on the filter and maybe cause bleeding of the hard water if the softener can't keep up.

    I'm still learning all of this so please let me know if I'm correct or way off base.

    Thanks!

  7. #7
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hobiecatter View Post
    So even with a water softener AFTER the slower carbon filter, I will still only get 4gpm at each faucet in the house? In my mind it seems like it would still fucntion the same in the house until the water softener is emptied out of water, then the flow would be slowed down to 4gpm because it is depending on the filter and maybe cause bleeding of the hard water if the softener can't keep up.
    Your thinking is flawed. The softener does not provide any storage whatsoever and if the carbon filter is rate limited to 4 GPM, that is what you will max out at, be it 1 gallon or 1000 gallons.

    What are the GPM requirements for backwashing/regenerating the softener? Without sufficient GPM, it might not shake up the media well enough. Why not go with a carbon filter that is capable of higher GPM?

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by LLigetfa View Post
    Your thinking is flawed. The softener does not provide any storage whatsoever and if the carbon filter is rate limited to 4 GPM, that is what you will max out at, be it 1 gallon or 1000 gallons.

    What are the GPM requirements for backwashing/regenerating the softener? Without sufficient GPM, it might not shake up the media well enough. Why not go with a carbon filter that is capable of higher GPM?
    Ok thanks for the logic on the softener. ...still learning!

    As for the filter, scratch the one I posted up earlier. I'm really interested in this different one that backwashes and it is capable of higher GPM.

    It's specs:
    Rated Service Flow Rate: 6.0 gpm
    Pressure Drop at Rated Service Flow: 10 psig
    Pressure Drop at 9.6 gpm: 15 psig
    Drain Flow Rate: 3.4 gpm
    Rated Capacity at Chlorine Concentration of: 1.5 ppm 570,000 gal.
    Sediment Removal with 30-40 micron particle size: 95% or more
    Sediment Removal with 40-50 micron particle size: 99% or more


    Thanks! and sorry to OP if I'm hijacking the thread, but this is the same exact question I have.

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