Starting my search for a water softener

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Stuuke

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Great forum. We've had some issues with dishes coming clean, buildup on shower heads, toilets and some pipes, rust color in the shower and I've started looking into the quality of our water. I've read through a few threads on here so hopefully I have the information you need to help. Here is what we have

2 adults 3 kids
3 showers/baths
4 bathrooms
We have an additional shower/toilet in the basement but they rarely get used.
Our non-lawn watering months it looks like we use between 10,000 gallons and 20,0000 gallons. *This is incorrect. The usage periods were for two months instead of one so we average 12,500 a month including lawn watering months. Late fall and winter months would be about half of that.

City numbers show total hardness as 180 or 10.5
Hach 5B test showed around 239.4 or 14
I also used a H2OOK test from Home Depot and it showed total hardness around the 250 area.

I guess the first question is based on those numbers would you recommend a water softener. Then it seems like the Fleck 5600 is the most recommended model. Based on our water situation do you think that is a good fit? What size would you recommend for our house and family? After that I might have a couple of installation questions.

Thanks!
 
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Reach4

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I guess the first question is based on those numbers would you recommend a water softener. Then it seems like the Fleck 5600 is the most recommended model.
Those are good to about 3/4 inch plumbing.

5810sxt is good for 1 inch plumbing.

Presuming 14.6 grains of hardness and using about 300 to 400 gallons per day of softened water, 2 cubic ft of 10% crosslinked resin in a 52x12 inch tank.
 

Bannerman

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A variance between 10,000 - 20,000 gallons per month is broad. For 5 people, 20K gallons calculates as 133 gallons per person per day in a 30 day month.

The hardness number the city supplied will be based on the average hardness from all sources combined. Municipal water is often obtained from multiple sources so your home's location within the distribution system will determine which water source most of your water is obtained from. Assuming the Hach 5B test was performed at your location, it is advisable to add 2-3 gpg when planning for and programming the softener, to anticipate occasions when hardness may be higher.

It is recommended to obtain a large enough system to satisfy your usage needs without requiring regeneration more often than 1X per week, and not less often than 1X per month.

10,000 gallons X 16 gpg (14 tested + 2) = 160,000 grains per month load or 5,333 grains per day.

A 2 ft3 softener will regenerate 48,000 grains usable capacity when using an efficient 16 lbs salt (8 lbs per ft3).
48,000 / 5,333 = approx 9 days between regeneration cycle so a 2 ft3 softener would be appropriate for that water usage.

If your usage is actually higher as you anticipate, then the softener should be larger to satisfy.

Below is a resin capacity chart which indicates the usable capacity and efficiency per salt setting. Salt settings are shown as lbs per cubic foot of resin. An 8 lb/ft3 salt setting is generally recommended as it will provide a great balance of salt efficiency, capacity and water quality.

https://terrylove.com/forums/index.php?attachments/resin-chart-jpg.53316/
 
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Stuuke

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A variance between 10,000 - 20,000 gallons per month is broad. For 5 people, 20K gallons calculates as 133 gallons per person per day in a 30 day month.

The hardness number the city supplied will be based on the average hardness from all sources combined. Municipal water is often obtained from multiple sources so your home's location within the distribution system will determine which water source most of your water is obtained from. Assuming the Hach 5B test was performed at your location, it is advisable to add 2-3 gpg when planning for and programming the softener, to anticipate occasions when hardness may be higher.

It is recommended to obtain a large enough system to satisfy your usage needs without requiring regeneration more often than 1X per week, and not less often than 1X per month.

10,000 gallons X 16 gpg (14 tested + 2) = 160,000 grains per month load or 5,333 grains per day.

A 2 ft3 softener will regenerate 48,000 grains usable capacity when using an efficient 16 lbs salt (8 lbs per ft3).
48,000 / 5,333 = approx 9 days between regeneration cycle so a 2 ft3 softener would be appropriate for that water usage.

If your usage is actually higher as you anticipate, then the softener should be larger to satisfy.

Below is a resin capacity chart which indicates the usable capacity and efficiency per salt setting. Salt settings are shown as lbs per cubic foot of resin. An 8 lb/ft3 salt setting is generally recommended as it will provide a great balance of salt efficiency, capacity and water quality.

https://terrylove.com/forums/index.php?attachments/resin-chart-jpg.53316/

Yeah, it's tough to get a good read on how much water we use. 9,600 was the lowest and it seems like 14-16k is the average before we start using the sprinklers. Also I was incorrect, they base the usage over a period of two months Jan-Feb was 9,600, Mar-April 14,200 and then May-June over 20,000 starting into the yard watering months. We average about 25k a period over the course of a year so about 12.5k a month.
 

Stuuke

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Also our setup isn't ideal. The pipe on the left goes to the sprinkler system. Options for a drain would be a utility sink a coulpe of feet away or a floor drain by our water heater.
 

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Stuuke

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Banner and Reach does anything change with the revised water usage?
 

Reach4

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A 1.5 "48 k" 10x54 inch tank would do it for you capacity-wise. However, the extra capacity is not a waste, and will soften slightly better at high flow rates. With all of your bathrooms, I would probably go with the 2 cuft unit, unless the slightly smaller form factor fits your space better.
 

Stuuke

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Last piece of missing info. Our line coming into the house is a 3/4".
 
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