Whole house softener / filtration system

Discussion in 'Water Softener Forum, Questions and Answers' started by Brian G, Feb 18, 2020.

  1. Brian G

    Brian G New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2020
    Location:
    McHenry, Illinois
    Good afternoon everyone!

    As recommened by another forum member, Im posting this here.

    I recently bought a house in McHenry, IL.
    The water softener system that is existing is older, the resin tank needs to be exchanged and the water quality is horrible.
    I have not had the water quality tested yet, but did find the local report for the water quality that serves our neighborhood.
    Below are a few of the results:

    Chorine = 1.0 ppm
    Barium = 0.1 ppm
    Radium 226/228 combined = 1.07 pCi/l
    Flouride = 0.54 ppm
    Iron = 1.3 ppm
    Manganese = 22 ppb
    Sodium = 46 ppm
    Zinc = 0.14 ppm
    Lead = 11.1 ppb
    Copper = 0.59 ppm

    As is, the water is hard if there is no salt in the salt holding tank, and scale / deposits will form on the faucets, etc. I recently changed the filters in our RO system, that is inline after the softener, and the sediment filter was layered in a thick brown/rust colored sludge. That filter was less than 6 months old and we did not run a ton of water through it.

    What I would like to know is what kind of whole house system would you recommend for water qualities such as these. Im looking to remove the hardness, and as many of the impurities as possible. Cant afford a whole house RO system, so Im looking at least another softener and possibly a filter system to suppliment it. I would do solely filter, but think I'll be changing costly filters a lot sooner than I should. My goal is safe, soft water that is as clean as possible without breaking the bank for our family of 3. Any input would be greatly appreciated!

    Brian
     
  2. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    I expect a softener would do you, but you could follow that with a RO for drinking if you like. Your numbers were not above the MCL or SMCL numbers except for iron, and the iron will all be precipitated out into the city pipes by the time the water gets to you. You do want 10% crosslinked resin.

    Hardness is a big factor in sizing a softener. The Hach 5-B is a good test you can use at home. At 20 grains per gallon or less, a softener with 1.5 cubic ft of resin (10x54 tank "48000") would be good. More, you would probably want 2 cuft "64000".

    Your report did not report pH, but McHenry is not going to have undesirable pH I expect.
     
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  4. Brian G

    Brian G New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2020
    Location:
    McHenry, Illinois
    Thanks Reach!
    Im learning so much more than I thought about water, softeners, and filters. Luckily ph is good here.
    Im going to test the water hardness myself, find my water usage, and figure the correct size based those figures and the iron and magnanese content. I'll add a pre and post filter at minimum for filtration, and I should be just fine.
     
  5. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    Never use the 48000 or 64000 numbers for calculations. You could use about 2/3 of those amounts.
     
  6. Brian G

    Brian G New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2020
    Location:
    McHenry, Illinois
    Gotcha!
    I'm seeing the 75% rule come up often..
    75% for average use and the other 25% for an unexpected extra use of water.
     
  7. ditttohead

    ditttohead Water systems designer, R&D

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2012
    Occupation:
    Water systems designer, R&D, Technical Director
    Location:
    Ontario California
    Filters before and after the softener will not really have any function but you can add them Be sure to install a 3 valve bypass around these filters if you add them so that you can bypass them for service or due to a leak. Be sure to use Big Blue filters, not slimline. Can you post pictures of your old equipment?
     
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