Confused--Really confused softener and BB install.

Discussion in 'Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and r' started by pauli5500, Feb 6, 2012.

  1. pauli5500

    pauli5500 New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Location:
    Arizona
    Some people I know with softeners have had their resin blow up, explode, whatever, and it's supposedly due to the higher (3ppm) of chlorine we have in our water supply. Due to our hardness at 15 gpg, we're think of getting a Fleck 5600 softener and it makes sense to have a charcoal filter before the softener to remove the chlorine so our resins doesn't explode as well. Now I hear another viewpoint: put the the filter afterward..supposedly the Big Blue will capture runaway resin before it gets in the plumbing and we'll have the benefit of chlorine in the softener to kill off bacteria. Thoughts on where the filter should be, please.
  2. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    I'm against a disposable cartridge type prefilter for a softener because human nature being what it is, many guys won't change the cartridge until they can't power wash their butt in the shower and by then it is way past the time it should have been changed and it has starved the softener for proper backwash water flow which has been harming the resin. That is not good for a softener.

    I think you meant to say that chlorine harms resin instead of resin explodes... and yes chlorine over time harms resin but, it takes many years to notice it. And if you remove it at the softener, the softener and the whole house is unprotected from bacteria in the city water system. Relatively speaking, resin is much less expensive than many years of replacing carbon cartridges.
  3. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    4,128
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Umm... he's talking about putting BB after the softener to catch the disintegrated resin. How can that impede backwash?
  4. chevy427

    chevy427 Banned

    Messages:
    174
    Location:
    USA
    Not really seeing why you would put a carbon filter AFTER the softener. If all you want to do is catch resins that somehow escape the system, then a sediment filter would be used because it is of adequate size. But unless you are having this unusual problem, I wouldn't even bother. Instead, put the BB carbon BEFORE the softener.

    Are you talking about a radial flow-through (carbon block) or an up-flow (granulated) BB replaceable cartridge? Actually, explode implies some kind of danger but in reality the resins do swell to a size big enough where they can break apart--so I guess you might say they exploded. I have opened city-watered, chlorinated-drenched resin tanks where the resins ooze out the top because they have expanded so much.

    What kinds of bacteria are we talking about here? Pathogens? I wonder why the 63 million well water users don't worry about bacteria. The water will bacteria-free until it gets to the filter, right? Sanitizing the household lines is so simple but probably never needs it. Mine has had chlorine-free water for 15 years and I still have ten toes.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 6, 2012
  5. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,895
    Location:
    Ontario California
    :)

    Chlorine above 3 ppm will damage resin fairly quickly. It causes the crosslink structure to fail allowing the resin to fracture and once that occurs, you no longer have round beads, you have irregular particles that will restrict flow rate. I would recommend a backwashing carbon system ahead of the water softener. The only time resin exits the bottom of a softener is due to the low quality bottom screens a lot of companies use. The Heavy Fleck or heavy Clack bottom screens do not suffer this problem. We only use the Fleck 40922 bottom screen and we have never had a field failure in any media with this bottom screen. We have been using it as an OEM systems builder for many years and it has proven itself to be bulletproof.

    With chlorine levels as high as you are stating, you should notice a smell of chlorine in the water. If you cant, then guests should be able to. You can get used to the chlorine smell very quickly, to the point that you dont notice it anymore. For reference, a swimming pool should be maintained between 1-3 ppm residual free chlorine. Some municiapl supplies will be this high due to your proximity to the point of chlorine injection. Municipalities are supposed to maintain a MRDL of 4 ppm. 4.0 mg/L or 4 ppm as an annual average. If you are near the pumping station where they inject the chlorine, you can get some very high levels. Thisis because the guys at the end of the line must have some residual in their line and chlorine dissipates quickly. Many municipalities use Chloramine to extend the time that chlorine stays in the water.

    A BB style filter is a waste of money, they have poor flow parameters, and their ability to remove the contaminants they claim is based on extremely low flow rates. Even a large residential backwashing tank has its limits for THM, VOC, and other contminants. See the attached chart for reference. A 20" BB carbon filter is less than 1/6 of a cubic foot of carbon.
    A 10X54 tank with 1-1/2 cu. ft. of GAC, or (10) 20" BB filter has a technical rating of 1.6 gpm - 4.5 gpm. Chlorine removal is quite easy, even at high flow rates, it is the other chemicals that take proper contact time for adequate removal. These charts are based on information directly from the Carbon manufacturers. 7000GAC.jpg
  6. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    He first said; we're think of getting a Fleck 5600 softener and it makes sense to have a charcoal filter before the softener to remove the chlorine so our resins doesn't explode as well.

    Then he said' Now I hear another viewpoint: put the the filter afterward

    I replied to both the before and after.
  7. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,895
    Location:
    Ontario California
    I totally agree on the removal of chlorine for the entire house. It should be done. Sanitizing the house lines is easy and could be done annually if you were really concerned about it. Just like an RO system, or most other drinking water systems. I have seen the comment more than once on how one shouldnt remove the chlorine from city water supplies. I have also been running chlorine free water in my house for over 15 years. Other than the common toilet slime that results because I dont keep up with the chlorine tablets in the toilet tank, there has been no problems. My water also tests negative for ecoli, coliform. I do sanitize my water softener resin every year, and I clean and sanitize my brine tank. The salt on the West coast comes primarily from Guerro Negro in Baja California, and I have seen the large number of birds that fly over the evaporation ponds...
  8. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    4,128
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Ah, I thought he was talking about a real GAC in front, not a disposable (BB) type.
  9. chevy427

    chevy427 Banned

    Messages:
    174
    Location:
    USA
    I just tell people to remove the carbon filter between change outs and run chlorinated water through the household lines and appliances and let sit for x-number of hours. Problem solved.
  10. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    Slime in the toilet tank after removing the city water chlorine, and then adding chlorine tablets to the toilet tank to kill the bacteria that causes it... but there's no problem removing chlorine on a whole house basis from city water. I hear ya.

    You guys seem to be most interested in selling stuff.

    I say if people want the chlorine out of their drinking/cooking water and the shower, they are much better off buying POU (point of use) specific kitchen sink and shower head filters instead of a POE (point of entry) whole house filter to supposedly prevent resin damage in their softener 10-20 years later. A cuft of resin should still be retailing for just around $125. A whole house filter of any kind will cost much more over those 10-20 years.
  11. pauli5500

    pauli5500 New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Location:
    Arizona
    I'm here, I'm here..more info and questions....re: Water Softener and filter install

    Had another guy come out today..offering a Fleck 5600 and Clack WS1...the later is $200 more. Another choice I gotta make.

    This guy was thinking I'm worrying too much about the resin disintergating and clogging up my whole system. He said they use 10% crosslinked resin and the people around me, who bought their systems from the builder, probably had 8% which is more susceptible to resin failure.

    As it turns out, my chlorine level is 1.78 pp not the 3 I had been told.

    He also said if I want to be really sure about no clogged up system, I can skip the carbon block and just have a sediment filter put after the softener. Sound reasonable?

    Also, seems most of you like Clack v. Fleck?
  12. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,895
    Location:
    Ontario California
    10% crosslink resin will last much monger than 8%, do not use 8% in your supply without removing the Chlorine first.

    If they are building a system with high quality bottom screens and a gravel underbed, a post filter should not be necessary. It would be a waste.

    Clack vs. Fleck... not even gonna discuss that one other than to say they are both excellent valves. The cost for the Clack should be very similar to the Fleck metered system. I would personally go for the Clack Ws1 over the 5600, but I would also go for the 7000SXT over the WS1. Regardless of my opinion, all three valves are excellent and will require very little service. As an OEM who distribute both of them, we have virtually no problems with either, and we sell enough to have very accurate data about consistency and quality control issues. Both exceed all quality expectations.

    The people around you probably had less than 8% crosslink. Many OEM's stock "non qualified" resin which will sometimes barely meet 6% crosslinking. This garbage resin will sometimes lat only a year before it fractures and fails. 7% is very common as well due to its lower cost. 8% crosslinking pricing has come to be within a few dollars per Cu.Ft. so many of the OEMs are now using 8% as their standard, but many "budget priced" units still use junk resin. Most major name brands use 10% or similar resin as their standard. Considering they are charging $4000 for a softener, they better include the best resin.
  13. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    The Clack WS-1CS is easier valve to program and in my opinion a much better choice than a 5600 or 7000. I have sold them all but quit selling the 7000 after about the first 20 of them about 2 years after they were put on the market back in Feb 2005. I sold the Clack WS-1 from Jan 2nd 2004 until June 15 2010 and had thefewestproblems of any valve I ever sold. That includes Autotrol 155 to the 269 and Technetic 1000, Brunner, Erie, Fleck and Clack. I've also sold 2-3 proprietary valves made by Fleck based on the 2500. Clack is the easiest and fastest to program and repair because it was designed to be the easiest to program and repair.

    I hear the 7000 is going through another tweaking to solve a strength problem where the by pass valve connects to it. I found it to be somewhat difficult to take apart and put back together to replace the seals and spacers. The original SE and then the SXT timers aren't 'user friendly' due to them using computerize instead of English. Plus it is a 1.25" valve and IMO over sized for most regular single family 2.5 bath houses. The 5600 has a limit of no larger than a 2.0 cuft softener which can be undersized for some of those houses with large tubs and/or 2 person or body spray showers.

    Not that it doesn't happen but... I have never sold anything put 8% cross linked resin and I can not recall having a single person have to replace their resin due to chlorine damage in my 25 years as a dealer selling to the end user customer.
  14. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,895
    Location:
    Ontario California
    The 7000 valve is an excellent valve. As with any new product, some people will have difficulty adapting to more modern technology. I sell hundres of 7000SXT's a month and they have been our most bullet proof valve. The WS1 is a close second. The 5600 is the best selling control valve ever, but it is showing its age. The 7000SXT is better for a DIY if future service is a concern since its parts are available, and not just through a few select dealers. You will do very well with any of these control valves.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 10, 2012
  15. mialynette2003

    mialynette2003 Member

    Messages:
    739
    Location:
    Ocala, Florida
    Based on the chlorinator I sold and mialynette's statements concerning the length of time between his servicing his customers that are using it, yes, he is not servicing it per the manufacturer's instructions.
    I guess you don't consider this a personal attack? You have attacked the equipment I sell many times but yet no one has deleted your posts. Why? You delete posts just to make yourself look good. If someone differs from you, you slam them. But when someone has something negitive about equipment you endorse, you delete their post. How fair is that?
  16. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    No I don't see what I said about you not servicing your chlorinator customers' per the manufacturer instructions of the chlorinator I sold as a personal attack.

    Also the chlorinator I sold would not go 4-8 months without running out of the max amount of 4lbs of pellets it holds IF you follow the manufacturer's instructions when filling it.

    The one I sold does not allow you to reduce the amount of chlorine down as far as you wanted. So I questioned you saying you were selling the same chlorinator as a I did. And if it was the same one, how is it you didn't know what I knew about it except your not following instructions.

    I don't recall ever running down the equipment you sell. I have said the Clack was a better valve than the 5600 and for a few years now, that you undersize softeners and waste salt and you refused to do anything other than defend your way of sizing by personally running me down for selling over sized softeners etc etc.. Ditto told you the same thing about your sizing recently and you never said a word about it. He also has said the Clack is a better valve than the 5600, and again, you haven't said a word to him about it.

    You don't like having your posts deleted. Maybe you should think about stopping whatever it is that you're doing that causes them to be deleted. That sounds fair to me.
  17. pauli5500

    pauli5500 New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Location:
    Arizona
    Well, anyway, guys

    Thanks for all the help...we settled on the Clack ws1 which will be installed next week with a sediment filter afterwards to catch all the resin that we hope doesn't escaped from the unit. We're getting a 10 yr parts and labor warranty, too. The guy from Kinetico tried to mislead me about their warranty, which is 10 yrs parts only...for what they charge, it should be a lifetime warranty for parts and labor.
  18. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    I think you made a good choice.

    I'd not lean too hard on the warranty because the Clack only has the industry standard 5 years and the stack (seal/spacers) and piston(s) are not warrantied; they are consumable/wearable parts. They usually last many years.
  19. mialynette2003

    mialynette2003 Member

    Messages:
    739
    Location:
    Ocala, Florida
    You don't ever recall saying I used J Tube's? Your remark was that they are infierer and should not be used. Then I pointed the fact that they were the very same thing you used in your brine tanks. (I checked for the quote, but it doesn't go back that far). And what about the fact that you have said on many occasions that someone has been banned but failed to memtion that you yourself have also been banned. I would consider that a personal attack. As for the Clack, I still don't like electronics but if someone wants to buy it, or any other electroinc valve, I will sell them one. I simply give my opinion and others my rebut it but with you, you make it sound as if what you say is gospel. Why is it that most other have the same problem with you, but none of them say the same to me? Can't play well with others?
  20. Tom Sawyer

    Tom Sawyer In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    Maine
    I try not to paint myself into a box where equipment is involved. I sell both Clack and Fleck and like both and recommend both. Each has good points and damn few bad points if any. I have not had electronic problems with the Clack head or at least not an unusual number of them. Neither have I with Fleck and I agree with Ditto here that the 7000 series is pretty damn hard to beat. It's solid, versatile and reliable in all conditions. There are price points for all customers though which is why GE and Kenmore still sell a whole lot of equipment. Sure those bargain filters don't last as long but if you get say 10 years out of one it sure as hell does not owe you anything either.
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Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and r Water Softener, I'm learning but still a bit confused.... Feb 2, 2013

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