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Old 04-06-2013, 09:35 PM   #1
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


Ordered and received my softener, asked my buddy to come be an extra hand while I hook it up (he knows a little bit more about plumbing than me since I don't really know much at all :P), and he tells me that this bypass (i'm actually going to cut off the the valves (they're not threaded) and use the pipes to connect to the included bypass) isn't set up to soften all my water, just a few select faucets. Taking a look at it, i realize that i (still) have no idea what this bypass is actually doing. Not sure if he's right, so I figured I'd ask here.

I tried to take some pictures and a video so people could see what I have going on and maybe help me. I really would like to do this myself, and know that, while I'm not nearly the most qualified person, i am capable of doing this, and want to do it, but until I figure this out I'm gonna be at a standstill. I may call a plumber to help me trace the lines, but would really hate to spend anymore money than I already have on this "project." If I go that route I'm going to be out a decent chunk of money and it'll take me a bit to save up for that. :/

Here is the album of pictures I took of the area: album. Here is a video: video.

If anyone could point me in the right direction, that would be amazing! Thanks in advance.

Edit: Err, maybe i should have waited before asking this...I guess i could just shut the valve off and see what it controls. I feel like a fool, lol.


Last edited by amateurplumber; 04-06-2013 at 11:26 PM.
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Old 04-06-2013, 09:41 PM   #2
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


It's impossible to tell by the pics. Start where your water main enters the house. Follow the pipe until you get to the bypass. If the main T's off at any point before the bypass, those areas won't be softened.

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Old 04-06-2013, 10:00 PM   #3
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


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It's impossible to tell by the pics. Start where your water main enters the house. Follow the pipe until you get to the bypass. If the main T's off at any point before the bypass, those areas won't be softened.
Thanks. I have to figure out where the water main enters. All i know is the shutoff valve is in the next room over from the bypass. Seems like the bypass lines go into the crawlspace. Ive never been in there. Arghhhhhhhhhhh...
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Old 04-06-2013, 11:37 PM   #4
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


If there is a question , always go to the beginning and start over.

Or if city where is the city line coming into the house, if there is a well then where is the pressure tank.

Either way it looks like there has been so many additions to the water line that it might well be time to clean things up and make things simple.

I have yet to figure out why the human race wishes to make things hard when it is very simple.
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Old 04-07-2013, 06:00 AM   #5
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


Get your friend over---then close the shut off on that bypass---see what fixtures still work---

those that still work will not be softened---the ones that do not work when the bypass is closed will be served by the water softener.
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Old 04-07-2013, 07:19 AM   #6
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


Is that copper pipe touching galvanized metal anywhere. Anyway looks like your copper joints are pin hole leaking.
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Old 04-07-2013, 02:58 PM   #7
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


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Get your friend over---then close the shut off on that bypass---see what fixtures still work---

those that still work will not be softened---the ones that do not work when the bypass is closed will be served by the water softener.
Ok, so i closed the middle valve, and tested a bunch of faucets. Nothing seems to be happening. If closing that valve does stop water to those faucets, how long would it take to notice reduced/no flow? I thought it was pretty fast. Which means, this bypass isnt doing much at all lol.
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Old 04-07-2013, 03:35 PM   #8
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


You should see a pressure drop almost immediately. Could be the valve is broken and not closing.
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Old 04-07-2013, 04:05 PM   #9
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


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You should see a pressure drop almost immediately. Could be the valve is broken and not closing.
That would be just my luck lol. It definitely shuts all the way (i.e., I can't tighten it any further), but the valve is very old so I guess it could be messed up somehow.
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Old 04-07-2013, 04:30 PM   #10
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


I think you need to trace it from the beginning. I just looked at your pics again on a bigger screen and you've got a lot of branches on both sides of the bypass. You need to know where everything goes. You don't want to soften your outdoor hose bibs and it's very possible that's what those branches are for.
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Old 04-07-2013, 04:38 PM   #11
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I have no idea what's going on with my piping.


It is a wonder that one has not back tracked the line to find out where it comes into the house.

Knowing where the incoming line is at is KEY.

Find the water heater and tag all the hot lines with red twine and the cold with blue ...

The water heater can be a friend in finding out where the water comes from when it comes to the cold water supply.

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