1. amateurplumber1

    amateurplumber1 Member

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    Is it important that I use full port ball valves when constructing a bypass for the water softener I plan on installing? Or can I get away with just using regular ball valves?
  2. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

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    The idea is that if the pipe is say, 3/4", you don't want to create a restriction in the line. I've not paid much attention to what is available, but I would guess that the majority of ball valves that size and larger are full port.
  3. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    I wouldn't suggest a manual 3 way by pass. The control valve type is much better and some offer more flexibility than just on or off. And they don't cost as much or take up as much space and don't create any dead ends in the plumbing.
  4. amateurplumber1

    amateurplumber1 Member

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    What is this control valve type bypass you speak of?! No one has mentioned that to me yet (I don't think) heh.

    Edit: are you talking about the bypass on the softener? I just figured (and was told) that its good to have the bypas on the wall too, so if there is a problem with the softener I can just turn on the bypass and not have to shut off all the water.
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2013
  5. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    The by pass on the wall is called a 3 way manual by pass.

    You can do the same with the factory type by pass made for your control valve. And in some cases you can do more than just by pass the softener with the factory BP.
  6. amateurplumber1

    amateurplumber1 Member

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    So if the softener breaks and I have to repair it, and i have no bypass on the wall, i can disconnect the bypass and softener and still have my water run? The guy who told me to keep the bypass said this:

  7. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

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    I prefer a high quality 3 valve bypass over the valve mounted bypasses. I only recommend using the Apollo Conbraco ball valves, full port versions. If you are going to use cheap ball valves, or gate valves, then a valve mounted bypass would be better and eliminate the 3 valve bypass.

    That being said, a good quality 3 valve bypass is much more expensive, time consuming, and for the most part overkill. It is the way we always do commercial units, the majority of residential units use the valve mounted bypass.

    Some valve mounted bypasses are very poor quality and should not be used. The old Eria and Autotrol "Pushrod" bypasses were terrible and would break when they were used. Many of the big box stores low end units bypasses are no good and should not be used. The Divertaflo (I think Watts owns it now) was excellent, and could re bebuilt in under 10 seconds. The Old Fleck Stainless (formerly Brass) bypasses have proven to be very reliable, and if they fail, they start to drip. They can be rebuilt for a couple dollars in a few minutes. The 7000, WS1, and Fleck plastic bypasses have proven to be long lasting, high quality bypasses that are all easily repairable and long lasting.

    Hope this helps.
  8. amateurplumber1

    amateurplumber1 Member

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    Thanks for all the info! Definitely helps. I have been pricing out the parts and it will probably cost me around $100-150 to rebuild the bypass with decent parts. A good chunk of that is soldering equipment (I have none). On top of that, it will take some time for me to learn how to solder and be comfortable enough to solder the valve together.

    So NOT using the bypass would save a ton of time and money. Appreciate the help!
  9. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    Yes you can easily remove the softener from the factory by pass valve.
  10. amateurplumber1

    amateurplumber1 Member

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    Oh, wow. That makes my life incredibly easy. Do you trust these push connectors in lieu of solder?

    Also, just once more to make absolutely sure: if something happens to the softener, and I dont have a separate bypass on the wall, and I have to repair it, i can just engage the bypass, have my water continue to run but be unsoftened, and repair the softener? You are awesome Gary. :p
  11. Gilley7997

    Gilley7997 New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Location:
    Illinois
    If you want a good picture of what the bypasses look like take a look in this post. http://www.terrylove.com/forums/showthread.php?50770-New-Home-Looking-for-Water-Treatment-System-Input&p=374581&viewfull=1#post374581 These are for the 7000's I just installed over the weekend. I also have the 3 valve bypass installed, but that was just for piece of mind, and yes the units are are easy to take of the push connectors. I will honestly say that we did cut one of the O-Rings when we tried to slide the 90 degree fittings into the head. But that was mainly our own fault and us being lazy and not initially wanting to cut the extra 1/4" off one of the copper pipes that was just a hair to long. We eventually pulled the pipe out and trimmed it and it's now very easy to get the units on and off, after replacing the .39 cent O-ring. I actually really like the easy on and off feature of the units. I guess back to the original question, we did use full port valves and, no we didn't buy ball valves mainly because the hardware store didn't have any 3/4" Ball Valves, so we went with the gate valves instead. Here's hoping I never really have to use them.
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2013
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