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Thread: Demineralizer to remove Sodium from soft H2O?

  1. #1
    EssentialMinerals is offline Junior Member
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    Default Demineralizer to remove Sodium from soft H2O?

    For residential applications that have a water softener:

    Is there a demineralizer or another method (other than an RO system or distallation) that's recommended for removing sodium from soft H2O at the kitchen sink cold water line?

    Thanks
    Last edited by EssentialMinerals; 04-28-2009 at 03:27 PM.

  2. #2
    Andy CWS is offline Moderator
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    There are mixed bed (color-changing) refillable cartridges that will reduce TDS to zero, or nearly so. I'm not sure this is the best way to treat drinking water but it can be done.

    De-ionizing filters are most commonly used for commercial, laboratory and industrial uses.

    What is your opposition to an RO? What is it you want your water to do (or not do)? I can see why many don't want a distiller as energy costs and low volume are not attractive.

    Andy Christensen, CWS-II

  3. #3
    EssentialMinerals is offline Junior Member
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    Hi Andy,

    I'm not opposed to an RO. I was just wondering if a de-ionizing filter would offer any advantage to an RO if all one wants to do is reduce the sodium in their softened water so they don't have to purchase bottled drinking water.

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    Andy CWS is offline Moderator
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    Rarely in any water treatment will ONE device (technology) be enough to handle desired results. A sequence of methods (system) may be required to correct water issues. First, know what know what the issues are.

    Does demineralization remove VOCs, organics, nititrates, pesticides, MTBEs, and "allthosezenes", etc. That is way ROs have a number of filters/membranes making it system. An RO may also need some kind of pretreatment such as softening.

    Andy Christensen, CWS-II

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    Gary Slusser is offline Banned
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    First, you need to know how much sodium is in the drinking water. A softener adds 7.85 mg/l, roughly a quart, per grain per gallons of compensated hardness.

    I.E. hardness of say 15 gpg plus 1 ppm of iron = compensated hardness of 19 gpg * 7.85 = 149.15 mg per quart. Now that seems to be a high number until we look at other sources of sodium by checking food labels.

    A slice of white bread usually has between 120-160 mg per slice. An 8 0z glass of glass of skim milk, 530+/-. V8 juice per glass, 560 mg. Snack food sodium content is TERRIBLE.

    So someone concerned or worried about sodium uptake should read labels and actually learn how much sodium they get compared to drinking a quart of their softened water. And then adjust accordingly instead of buying an RO etc. to reduce the softened water sodium content. Donchya think?

    BTW, most all waters contain some sodium. And all chlorides, salt is sodium chloride, goes right through a water softener to drain, none is added to the treated water.

  6. #6
    EssentialMinerals is offline Junior Member
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    Hi Gary,

    Per our water test report, our softened water contains 160 mg/l of sodium. On the advice of a cardiologist, I've been advised not to consume softened water. And yes, I have been carefully reading food labels for many years. An 8oz glass of organic skim milk has 130mg of sodium. V8 juice is one of the highest sodium beverages available. In fact, there is a "low-sodium" version that has 140mg in an 8 oz glass.

    The big problem with sodium is that it is in nearly everything. So unless one is aware, its very easy to consume too much. A little bit from each of many sources obviously adds up. This is why hypertension is so prevalent today. Agreed, snack food as well as fast food are the worst offenders. The big difference between snack food or fast food and water, is that water is essential to life. Snack food & fast food, for example, are optional.

    Per the EPA:
    "EPA recommends reducing sodium concentrations in drinking water to between 30 and 60 mg/L based on esthetic effects (i.e., taste). This recommendation is not federally enforceable but is intended as a guideline for States. States may establish higher or lower levels depending on local conditions, such as unavailability of alternate source waters or other compelling factors, provided that public health and welfare are not adversely affected. A goal of 2.4 g/day dietary sodium has been proposed by several government and health agencies. Drinking water containing between 30 and 60 mg/L is unlikely to be perceived as salty by most individuals and would contribute only 2.5% to 5% of the dietary goal if tap water consumption is 2 L/day. At the present time the EPA guidance level for sodium in drinking water is 20 mg/L. This value was developed for those individuals restricted to a total sodium intake of 500 mg/day and should not be extrapolated to the entire population (Drinking Water Advisory: Consumer Acceptability Advice and Health Effects Analysis on Sodium, 822-R-03-006)."

    So, what is the best way to reduce the sodium in our softened well water? Or, is there some method of filtration that would allow us to make truly enjoyable hot tea from our unsoftened well water (hardness = 309, iron = 0.32, TDS = 438)? I'm tired of hauling bottled water.
    Last edited by EssentialMinerals; 04-30-2009 at 03:19 PM.

  7. #7
    EssentialMinerals is offline Junior Member
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    Another possibility might be to:
    • Continue to use the softener for the bathrooms, laundry & dishwasher
    • Run an unsoftened cold water line to the kitchen sink that is filtered under the sink or at POE especially for iron (0.32) and for whatever else is typically recommended (i.e. sediment, etc)
    • And continue to buy bottled water just for tea
    This option would provide very low-sodium (14 mg/l) mineral water for drinking & cooking and would significantly reduce the quantity of bottled water needed each week. Please advise. If we go this route, which filters would be most appropriate? Thanks!
    Last edited by EssentialMinerals; 04-30-2009 at 05:25 PM.

  8. #8
    EssentialMinerals is offline Junior Member
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    FWIW, I've been advised by a knowledgeable tech support person at Pentek that due to our levels of TDS (438) & hardness (309), that my idea in the previous post is not likely to yield palatable drinking water.

  9. #9
    Gary Slusser is offline Banned
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    So yer all stressed out'n worried about sodium in a cup of tea... If it were me (and I too are supposed to limit sodium intake) I'd eat 1-2 slices of white bread less a day or cut out the equivalent amount of sodium by not eating/drinking something else. That way you reduce your stress because that will kill you quicker than anything, stress and worrying actually causes high blood pressure and heart disease, ya know?

    Or buy an RO or spend more running a hard water tap to the kitchen sink. Or use that money to fund buying bottled water way out into the future!

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