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Old 06-25-2012, 11:39 PM   #1
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Water Quality - Filter / Softener needed?


Question for those that are smarter about this than me. I have water that has a mineral taste, after long period of time/usage can create green around sink drains. My Fridge filter takes out the mineral taste entirely, but replacing that every 3 months doesn't seem to be the best solution for the whole house, and I still have the green in the sinks to consider.

Water is well water. Water has been tested by two different companies and they both had the same results.

PH is around 5.5
Total Alkalinity is 60
Total Chlorine is 0
Total Hardness is 0
Iron is 0 or 0.3, depending on the test.
Copper is 0
Nitrate is 0
Nitrite is 0
No indications of Iron Bacteria or Hydrogen Sulfide

Question is - do I need a whole house water softener to get rid of any mineral taste? Last company that did the test said the water is soft & I need a water softener, which their solution costing $10k to $12k. After the shock was over I decided to just live with it for awhile, but would like to know if there are other options out there for a DIY person like myself that will be actually useful & will make my wife happy. For $12,000 I can live with green tinge on sinks for a long time...


thanks


Forrest


Last edited by fackert61; 06-25-2012 at 11:42 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 06-26-2012, 09:54 AM   #2
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Water Quality - Filter / Softener needed?


You have acid water (pH of 5.5--neutral water has pH of 7 and ideally your water should have a pH of 7.5 +/-). The green is likely copper leaching from copper pipes. Let untreated you face pin hole leaks in your copper pipes down the road.

There are two basic approaches to treating acid water with a pH of 5.5:
1. Use a backwashing filter filled with a mix of corosex and calcite--the advantage of this system is that it takes very little maintenance--just periodic addition of media as it is depleted. The downside of this system is that it adds hardness to the water and you may decide you also need to add a softener because of this.
2. Injection of soda ash. The advantage of this system is no increase in hardness. The downside is that it takes a regular testing/maintenance to keep the injection rate correct and the system working.

Here is one source of supply for injection sytems:
http://www.cleanwaterstore.com/soda-ash-systems.html

Here is one source of supply for a calcite/corosex filter:
http://www.cleanwaterstore.com/acid-neutralizer.html

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Old 06-30-2012, 04:54 PM   #3
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Water Quality - Filter / Softener needed?


Looks like a pretty good site & product. They are a recommended source for PH balancers?

Also - one question - how do I determine water flow rate if my pump is submerged in the well?

Talked to my neighbor about his PH & he said he just replaces pipes as they get pinhole leaks. He has replaced pipe in 4 different spots in the last 3 years. He just lives with it & re-installed new copper piping every time he gets a leak. Good thing he does it himself...


thanks
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Old 06-30-2012, 05:09 PM   #4
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Water Quality - Filter / Softener needed?


Quote:
Originally Posted by fackert61 View Post
Looks like a pretty good site & product. They are a recommended source for PH balancers?

Also - one question - how do I determine water flow rate if my pump is submerged in the well?

Talked to my neighbor about his PH & he said he just replaces pipes as they get pinhole leaks. He has replaced pipe in 4 different spots in the last 3 years. He just lives with it & re-installed new copper piping every time he gets a leak. Good thing he does it himself...


thanks
I am not in a position to recommend a specific source. I find the information provided on the linked site to be generally good and they, in my opinion, sell quality products. That said there are quite a few internet suppliers of water treatment equipment and, in my experience, you can typically get best price by shopping carefully--I am not aware of any single site that consistently provides best price.

As to flow rate--if you are considering injection before the pressure tank then you need to determine the flow rate supplied by your pump. One way to do that is determine the capacity of the pressure tank (depends on cut on pressure, cut off pressure, precharge in pressure tank, and size of pressure tank) and then determine time between cut on and cut off with no water use. For example, if it takes 30 seconds for the pressure tank to fill and the effective capacity is 5 gallons then your well pump is supplying 10 gpm.

If you are considering an AN filter--which is installed after the pressure tank then you need to determine flow using a fixture approach along with the number of residents to determine a typical max flow. A typical water saving shower head is 2.5 gpm. A toilet about 1.5 gpm. A sink about 2 gpm. Washing machines and dishwashers are typically 2 gpm =/-. Assuming a family of four and no unusual uses (multi head showers, big tubs, etc) a value of 9-12 gpm might be typical.
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