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Thread: changing media

  1. #1
    Brando is offline Junior Member
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    Default changing resin

    How difficult is it to change the resin in a water softener that is about 9 years old( but only put in service about 2 years ago).
    Works ok,( just not what i have experienced with "soft" water) just thought it might be worth it to change to a newer more efficient media.
    Fleck econominder head.
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    Last edited by Brando; 03-21-2008 at 02:07 AM. Reason: changed speciffics

  2. #2
    Andy CWS is offline Moderator
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    Changing the resins is not a bad idea if you feel that they have been jeopardized.

    How big is your tank? Height x width? What particular problems are in your water?

    Andy Christensen, CWS-II

  3. #3
    Gary Slusser is offline Banned
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brando
    How difficult is it to change the resin in a water softener that is about 9 years old( but only put in service about 2 years ago).
    Works ok,( just not what i have experienced with "soft" water) just thought it might be worth it to change to a newer more efficient media.
    Fleck econominder head.
    What's wrong with the softener or the soft water? Or why do you think the resin should be replaced? If you don't have soft water at all times, you may not have the softener set up correctly for your water use or water quality. New resin isn't going to cure that and basically resin is resin as long as we talk about the same type, or mesh size. It's like white sugar or regular gasoline, one is about the same as the next except for the price.

  4. #4
    Brando is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser
    What's wrong with the softener or the soft water? Or why do you think the resin should be replaced? If you don't have soft water at all times, you may not have the softener set up correctly for your water use or water quality. New resin isn't going to cure that and basically resin is resin as long as we talk about the same type, or mesh size. It's like white sugar or regular gasoline, one is about the same as the next except for the price.
    Perhaps then the first step is ensuring i have it set-up correctly. When i got it, i just installed it and off we went. I didn't adjust anything.
    Its a fleck econominder head on what i would describe as a "standard" sized resin tank.
    Like i said, i have a water report from the town, but will guess that a specific report for MY water would be helpful. I will get that done( from the un-softened side) and post it.
    Just out of curiosity: What tests would be sufficient to make a determination?
    Last edited by Brando; 03-21-2008 at 03:54 PM.

  5. #5
    Brando is offline Junior Member
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    Alright, had the water tested at a local pool store, not sure what if any information provided will do...
    presoftener (1) Post softener (2)

    Ph 7.6 7.8
    TA 130 140
    Calcium hardness 140 40
    TDS 500 400
    metals 0 0
    Salt 400 300

    seemed odd that the salt content was LOWER in the post softener sample.
    That said here is a shot of the settings on the head. This household has 2 people. What is it set at and how SHOULD it be set?




    Also, i opened the back and the salt setting is on 7. I believe this needs to be adjusted, correct? I seem to remember 12 is a good setting.???
    What exactley does changing the amount of salt used DO?
    AND how do i adjust it? loosen the silver screw that holds it down, adjust the white piece and then tighten?

    Thanks for the help

    Edit:
    In looking around at how to change the salt setting, i came across something that indicated that 17.1ppm = 1 grain of hardness.
    IF that is the case then the un-softened water at a TDS of 400 is 23.39 grains, my area is known for extremely hard water.
    Then even after coming though the softener at a TDS of 300 the hardness is STILL at 17.54
    it does appear that the softener is removing about 71 % of the calcium hardness.

    SO i have determined that
    A. either the softener is not performing sufficiently due to settings.
    B. the softener is not performing correctly due to bad resin.
    C. the is something else in the water that doesn't get removed by the softener, but *might* with an inline sediment filter AFTER the softener.
    D. ?
    E. ?
    Last edited by Brando; 03-22-2008 at 11:02 PM.

  6. #6
    Andy CWS is offline Moderator
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    Your TDS normally increases after the softener so that is unusual. The fact that you are getting that much hardness after the softener can indicate all that you mentioned.

    You might have tested the water just as the softener was going beyone capacity. It may provide excellent water but just not all the time.

    Timer systems are just a guessing game on when to regenerate according to your water conditions and theoretically how many people are using water. Nobody uses the same amount everyday and some day you will use none.

    Your 'salt' tests: were they sodium or sodium-chloride tests? If your well water has high salt content then your softener will not work effectively as set up.


    Andy Christensen, CWS-II

  7. #7
    Brando is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy CWS
    Your TDS normally increases after the softener so that is unusual. The fact that you are getting that much hardness after the softener can indicate all that you mentioned.

    You might have tested the water just as the softener was going beyone capacity. It may provide excellent water but just not all the time.

    Timer systems are just a guessing game on when to regenerate according to your water conditions and theoretically how many people are using water. Nobody uses the same amount everyday and some day you will use none.

    Your 'salt' tests: were they sodium or sodium-chloride tests? If your well water has high salt content then your softener will not work effectively as set up.

    Andy Christensen, CWS-II
    Not sure which test was used, whatever pools stores normal use... but am told that the area has high salt in the water.
    The cycle was about 2/3 of the way through from what i can tell.
    Still would like clarification on how its set-up..i thought it was set for 2 people at 15 grains hardness.

    What do you suggest first
    BTW how much water should be in the brine tank? I peered into the tube and it appears that that the water levels is about 10-12 inches below the float.
    Last edited by Brando; 03-23-2008 at 01:43 PM.

  8. #8
    Andy CWS is offline Moderator
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    If you have salt (sodium chloride) in your water, no water softener using an ion exchange, will work effectively. In areas where salt is an issue, we recommend a whole-house RO system or desalionation system.

    These are not cheap and a more thorough water analysis is required. I normally never ecommend a whole house RO due to the complexities, cost and size of the system. But when there is no effective alternative....

    You water is 12" BELOW! the float. Uhm. That doesn't sound right. You should have enough water and salt so that the salt can dissolve and provide enough brine solution to saturate the resin bed. However, if there is salt in your well water, normal softening cannot be achieved.

    Andy Christensen, CWS-II

  9. #9
    Brando is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy CWS
    If you have salt (sodium chloride) in your water, no water softener using an ion exchange, will work effectively. In areas where salt is an issue, we recommend a whole-house RO system or desalionation system.

    These are not cheap and a more thorough water analysis is required. I normally never ecommend a whole house RO due to the complexities, cost and size of the system. But when there is no effective alternative....

    You water is 12" BELOW! the float. Uhm. That doesn't sound right. You should have enough water and salt so that the salt can dissolve and provide enough brine solution to saturate the resin bed. However, if there is salt in your well water, normal softening cannot be achieved.

    Andy Christensen, CWS-II
    Its not a well, its city water The water quality report states sodium levels range form 180-320ppm-is that at a level that will render the softening useless? is there not way to remove that prior to softening other that the reverse RO you spoke of?

    Brine tank:
    I just washed out the tank, i refilled thew water level to so that it was just above what i remember was recommended by the manufacturer( about 3 inches above the bottom, there is a molded edge at that point)
    Should i just add some water to bring it up? Can there be to much water in the brine tank?
    That salt level drops so i am assuming it is working in that sense, i just added 160#s.

    Where do you recommend that i have the water tested that wont cost me an arm an a leg, and what test should be done?
    Last edited by Brando; 03-25-2008 at 10:17 AM.

  10. #10
    Gary Slusser is offline Banned
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    You need to use the max hardness figure from the water co's report.

    The 17.7 conversion is for hardness only, not TDS etc.. TDS is not used to size or program a softener.

    You set the salt dose lbs specifically for your volume and type of resin in the softener, there is no 'normal' setting.

    You have a demand initiated metered type softener, not a timer type.

    Read this for all the sizing information you need. Then post your hardness from your report, look all over the straight sides of your resin tank for a model number and post it. You won't find the label if your softener has a jacket on it, so find a model number of the softener or a brochure etc. that may give us a K of capacity etc..

    The float in your salt tank does not control the volume of water that goes in the tank. The float is part of a safety brine system. The amount of water in the tank depends on the salt dose lbs and the amount of salt in the tank and it varies.

  11. #11
    Brando is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks for the reply Gary:
    I was able to find the manual and i scanned the specs...


    The reason i am concerned that the resin may be bad is that this unit is probably close to 8 or 9 years old, and sat in a garage in the phoenix heat for that time until about 8 months ago when it was installed.

    I also had an old self contained unit that was about 3 feet tall that had a Huge squat resin tank...i never hooked it up other than to run a hose to it to rinse it..the found this one which was new)the water that came out felt really "soft" or slick..we have never felt this from this unit.

    From the report:
    Hardness as CaCO3 2.3-18.7
    Total Dissolved Solids 400-1100
    Sodium ppm 120-380

  12. #12
    Gary Slusser is offline Banned
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    So did you run the math etc. at the link I gave you?

    Set the gallons at 825 (put the white dot across from the #8 and the second hash mark). Do not use the number of people, use the white dot across from 825 gals. Add 3-5 gals of water to the salt tank watching that it doesn't overflow on the floor. Set the salt dose at 15lbs. Do 2 manual regenerations with as little water use if any between them and when they are done, set the salt dose to 7 lbs. See if the water is soft. If not then you probably need new resin.

  13. #13
    Brando is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser
    So did you run the math etc. at the link I gave you?

    Set the gallons at 825 (put the white dot across from the #8 and the second hash mark). Do not use the number of people, use the white dot across from 825 gals. Add 3-5 gals of water to the salt tank watching that it doesn't overflow on the floor. Set the salt dose at 15lbs. Do 2 manual regenerations with as little water use if any between them and when they are done, set the salt dose to 7 lbs. See if the water is soft. If not then you probably need new resin.
    I came up with a gpm rate of 14.375 at the tub and 9,375 at and outside hosebib. To find the SFR it said to call you...
    Basically what i understand is that if your flow rate exceeds the SFR rate of the unit, it is ineffective.

    Using the calculator and the figures i had from the water quality report and 2 people 0 iron 0 mag( according to the WQR which doesn't list either), +20 extra gallons for wash) came up with this....

    Based on the information you entered, 2618 is your Daily Grains of Capacity needed. 20944 is the Total Grains of Capacity you need for approximately once per week regeneration with a 24 hr reserve. 1.5 is the minimum cubic foot size of softener required for your capacity needs.

    i rounded up in the chart to determine:
    Salt dose (total lbs) 6
    Salt Dose Capacity 22800
    Grains of Capacity PER lb of salt (salt efficiency) 2819
    Days between regenerations 9
    Gallons between regenerations 1219

    Just set the salt dosage to 15 added the water and am running the first of the regen cycles. i understand it will take a little time to recognize the softness of the water takes time to get into the system.

  14. #14
    Gary Slusser is offline Banned
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    Use the programming I gave you, not the info from the calculator. That's because you don't have a 1.5', your softener is a 1.0 cuft. I can tell that from the info on the sticker you posted. Currently your meter is set at 975 gallons; white dot at 9 plus the third hash mark (900 + 75, each hash is 25 gals.).

  15. #15
    Brando is offline Junior Member
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    Ran through the cycling and settings as you recommended , i seemed to notice a slight difference in the cold water not to long afterwards, then left, just got home will see how the water "feels" in the next day or so.

  16. #16
    Gary Slusser is offline Banned
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    So how's your water?

  17. #17
    Brando is offline Junior Member
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    Your instructions seem to have done the trick. I can feel the difference in the water now, and the wife has noticed a HUGE difference in the softness of he hair after washing.
    Now to see if this makes and difference in the ring in the washer from my other post.
    Thank you for your time and effort !

  18. #18
    Gary Slusser is offline Banned
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    You're welcome. I'm glad I could help you help yourself.

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