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TinTweak

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Hello, I am new to this forum and looking for some advice on choosing and installing a water softener; as well as a carbon filter for chlorine and a RO system sometime down the line. Let me apologize in advance for my lack of understanding in the subject and say that I greatly appreciate any advice you can give. Buckle in, this is a long one.

I have had a couple local companies and Culligan test my water to give me a quote. They all seemed to be a bit pricey so I decided to do this myself. The water tests from each company varied slightly but here are the averaged amounts. I have also attached the Tiffin City water report link at the bottom.
17 grains of hardness, which I verified with a Hach 5B.
0 Iron, No one tested for Iron and I was told this is a non issue for city water (maybe at least here)
7.5 Ph
528 TDS
2.0 Chlorine

https://tiffin-iowa.org/water-sewer/2018-water-quality-report/

I recently purchased this home and am currently the sole occupant. But I would like the system to be large enough to sustain 3-5 people, for when I have family and friends over for longer periods of time as well as make sense for the size of the home (4 bed) to help with resale in about 4-5 years.

I am most interested in the Fleck 5600 SXT, I love that it's simple, reliable, and seems to be the go to for applications like mine. I haven't nailed down which size to get yet but from what I've been reading the larger capacities are more salt efficient, as well as refresh less often of course. I am leaning toward something at or over 48k grains of media for that reason. From what I understand the portion of this softener that is made by Fleck is the valve control. But I see an abundance of other companies selling water softeners with the "Fleck" name as well as their own company name slapped on, and I get confused as to what they are actually selling. Is it a Fleck or is it something else?

So here's the question, should I buy from Fleck/Pentair directly and is 48k grains enough? What else would you recommend?

When it comes to chlorine filtration, I haven't seen nearly as much information on the topic and definitely nothing like the confidence people seem to have in Fleck. But I found this "AFWFilters 56SXT-10% Combo Package" https://store.afwfilters.com/packag...ith-upflow-filter-10-resin-with-carbon-black/ which seems to come with a Fleck 5600 SXT 48k Grain with 10% crosslink resin (that supposedly has much longer life) and a carbon filter.

Do I need 10% crosslink resin? Is this a Fleck valve control or AFWF's own? Anyone have experience with them? What would you recommend for a carbon filter?

I've attached a picture of the main water line in my basement. The blue line coming from the ground is the main water coming to the house. The in line unit between the two valves is the city water meter. Above that the line splits with the right/horizontal line going to outside water (which continues upward out of frame) and the left/vertical line goes to the water heater/cold water (and bends 90 degrees to continue left out of frame) I also have a drain in the floor for the waste from the water softener.

20200519_170950.jpg


From what I understand I would ideally install a bypass valve right above the separation of water going into/out of the home on the vertical portion before the 90 degree bend that runs into the water heater/cold water. Then run that bypass valve into the water softener/carbon filter. There should be plenty of room on either side of the water heater (on the left side of frame) for the water softener/carbon filter to sit. Although I would prefer it on the right side, the space is smaller at 36" and the plumbing would either have to be flexible or have an additional 90 degree elbow to get around the outside water line.

I don't have a lot of plumbing experience but I do have a lot of mechanical and electrical experience from my time in service. That being said it would be better to "Army proof" the information; for those familiar with the term.

The RO system is at the bottom of my list. I have seen mostly 4 stage systems but don't have any idea of what brand to go with; and would like some recommendations. I would be installing this inline with a refrigerator on the main floor to give clean ice and drinking water.

If you've read this far, I appreciate it greatly. I don't expect anyone to solve my problems for me, let alone answer all my questions. Any input on any portion of this would help a lot, I am just glad there are places like this to get information from experienced people. Thank you.
 
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ditttohead

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Your installation would be fairly easy. I work with several companies that could assist you. I will send you a PM. For the RO, ignore the marketing and the number of stages. It really depends on your whole house filtration. More stages is not necessarily better.
 
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Mark E Brada

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Your installation would be fairly easy. I work with several companies that could assist you. I will send you a PM. For the RO, ignore the marketing and the number of stages. It really depends on your whole house filtration. More stages is not necessarily better.


I am in about the same boat as the OP. Indianapolis area, new construction, one occupant for now, would like capacity for at least two people on a regular basis. Hardness of 18.3, ND on the Iron, Manganese of .41, pH of 7.70, chlorine of 1.7. I've read more about softeners in the past week than I ever thought i would, now I just need someone reputable to deal with to help me nail down the final decision. This will be a self-install, I can do basic plumbing and follow directions.

Thanks in advance!
 
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brw

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I'm long on reading and short on experience... That said, the number 1 reason that I've read about is 10% crosslink stands up to chlorinated water better than 8%. At what level of chlorine is 10% resin required? Opinions vary and I don't personally know.
 

Reach4

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I'm long on reading and short on experience... That said, the number 1 reason that I've read about is 10% crosslink stands up to chlorinated water better than 8%. At what level of chlorine is 10% resin required? Opinions vary and I don't personally know.
The level that comes with city water.

Your city water provider is required to keep the chlorine/chloromine level up to a minimum level, and even at that minimum, 10% crosslinked is desirable.
 

ditttohead

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Considering the cost of 10% is only marginally higher, why use the lower crosslink? Many companies are actually using a much lower crosslink in order to be $1 cheaper than the next online junk company.
 
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