No clue what I'm doing other than trying to save $$$$

Discussion in 'Water Softener Forum, problems, installation and r' started by Cuznbass, Mar 10, 2014.

  1. Cuznbass

    Cuznbass New Member

    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Ohio
    I have a softener that is on it's last lap and may not finish. I have been quoted some outrageous prices on new systems that I just can't possibly afford. As I understand it, I have an Autotrol Series 155 Control with a 460MP timer. I don't know anything about tank size or if it matters in this instance. I've manually regenerated it twice and still no softened water. Plus it leaks. I know that it needs replaced or rebuilt. I guess my big question is can I just put a different control on the system as a direct replacement? If I can, what should I get? I found a couple of used ones online and one appears to be the exact same thing and the other is what appears to be an updated model. Can I just install one of these, make sure the settings are the same and get a little more time out of my system? Or if I were to purchase a new one, what would you recommend? Like I said, I'm trying to do this is as cheap as I can for the time being. I thought about buying a rebuild kit but that seems like too much work for someone who has never done it before. Thanks to anyone in advance.
  2. Reach4

    Reach4 Active Member

    Messages:
    2,386
    Location:
    IL
  3. nhmaster3015

    nhmaster3015 Master Plumber

    Messages:
    836
    Location:
    The granite state
    If its been in there for over ten years or so the media is probably on its last legs also. The Autotrol head can be rebuilt, your call but if its really on its last leges theres no point in salvaging any of it.
  4. SHR

    SHR Member

    Messages:
    108
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Replace it! You can do it yourself. Is there a Home Depot, Lowes or Sears near you? Purchase a GE, Whirlpool or Kenmore water softener and two Sharkbite push to connect water softener supply lines. I would do the install a little different but this way you can do it yourself and save all the installation cost. In the future if you want to you can have a plumber replace the Sharkbite lines. All three brands are made by the same American company and are good made in the USA units.
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2014
  5. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,858
    Location:
    Ontario California
    I would heartily disagree with the GE units. Home Depot has a bad habit of selling systems that are made by the lowest bidder. Ask anyone on this site who services equipment, very few if any would touch a Sears, whirpool, kenmore, GE, or similar system. They are not a quality unit. I have been in the water softening industry for 27+ years, I would not recommend those units. They are truly not worth the money. I would equate them to barely even a Yugo status.

    Think of your hobby, I mountain bike. Those units are the Huffy's of the industry. I am sure you can make your own comparison. Lowest bidder wins!
  6. SHR

    SHR Member

    Messages:
    108
    Location:
    Minnesota
    I will put in Ecowater manufactured GE, Kenmore and Whirlpool water softeners all day long, I have even put them in for my family members. I have sold and installed over 400 of these water softeners without a problem. I consider the GE to be a great softener for the price. I am a staunch Ecowater fan. Made in Woodbury, MN, USA!

    Dittohead, I respect your experience and knowledge in the water softener field. I am not naive enough to think there are not better, more serviceable softeners out there, but I stand behind the Ecowater softeners being a great value.
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2014
  7. mialynette2003

    mialynette2003 Member

    Messages:
    738
    Location:
    Ocala, Florida
    Years ago I was the service mgr for an EcoWater dealership. We had quite a few problems with their softeners and RO's. I would call and complain about the same issues and was told that it was only happening to us. I contacted other dealerships only to find out they were being told the same thing. In 1995 or 1996 IIRC 11 dealer filed a class action law sue against EcoWater for deceptive trade pratices and won. For me, a company that does not stand behind it's product is not one I will talk good about.
  8. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Messages:
    1,858
    Location:
    Ontario California
    Simply put, as a service technician who has worked on everything from Bruner, Brasswell, Kinetico, Solo, Culligan, Fleck Clack, etc. I will simply say that I am not a fan, and when I was running the largest water systems service company in Southern California, we would not even consider servicing those units. They were disposable.
  9. nhmaster3015

    nhmaster3015 Master Plumber

    Messages:
    836
    Location:
    The granite state
    I'll condense my thoughts on GE, Whirlpool, Ecowater Etc......Garbage
  10. Noyzee1

    Noyzee1 New Member

    Messages:
    21
    Location:
    SoAz
    Why not just rebuild the Autotrol? Unless it's absolutely trashed, everything should be repairable.
    The only way I'd recommend the EcoWater units is if you 1) get one dirt cheap, and 2) are willing to learn about them and maintain them yourself. All info is on the web, and parts are easy to come by. Other than that, paying for more frequent service calls for these will probably outweigh the lower price point over the Flecks, Clacks, Autotrols, etc.
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