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Old 12-25-2014, 08:09 PM   #1
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Basic Whole House Filtration; 1" on Municipal Water


We're in Las Vegas, NV. As we do some plumbing, a simple whole house filter is contemplated. General sediment, hard water elements (calcium, etc.) and chlorine mitigation are the primary goals. Drinking water will be R-O and a salt-based softener will be in place. With a fairly expensive new tankless water heater and other appliances down-line, plus pre-treatment for consumption, we're looking for basic function with minimal flow restriction. Off the shelf replacement cartridges are desired. We've lived for quite a few years without, so we are looking for improvement at an affordable price, not magic or complexity. Any suggestions would be appreciated
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Old 12-26-2014, 07:41 AM   #2
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Not sure what you mean by "down-line" but if you're already done so, you should never have installed a tankless heater without first addressing your water's issues. If your water is as hard as I think it is, without serious repetitive maintenance the unit won't last a year. But anyway, I suspect all you really need is a basic salt-based system. Other than a whole-house filter, which removes nothing but particulate matter, saying you want affordability without complexity pretty much eliminates everything else.
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Old 12-26-2014, 11:46 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by md2lgyk View Post
Not sure what you mean by "down-line" but if you're already done so, you should never have installed a tankless heater without first addressing your water's issues. If your water is as hard as I think it is, without serious repetitive maintenance the unit won't last a year. But anyway, I suspect all you really need is a basic salt-based system. Other than a whole-house filter, which removes nothing but particulate matter, saying you want affordability without complexity pretty much eliminates everything else.
Sorry I wasn't more clear, but I thought I at least alluded to the configuration of my home in the OP.

I am indeed asking about a whole house filter. However, whole house filtration ranges from $35 single cartridge systems to multi cartridge/tank affairs above $500 and beyond. That's why I'm asking for opinions here.

I guess downline is a figure of speech. I mean everything after the main supply. The plumbing project underway is to relocate my water heater and salt-based softener, switching to a tankless heater at the same time.

Perhaps the tankless unit is the more expensive item I'm trying to protect, but the softener, dishwasher, clothes washer, R-O system and everything else in the house would benefit. We haven't had a filter in 14 years in this home. Water heater #1 lasted only four years, but the one we are removing has over 10 years of service with no obvious problems. Dishwasher and laundry ages are the inverse of the heater; about 10 good years on originals, and four years on the new units with no problems. A few faucet cartridge replacements and shower head de-calcifications have occurred. All in all, I can't say that equipment service life has been too bad on water that is only treated by a salt-based softener. The softener itself will be replaced now (at 14), "just because."

Throwing a more expensive and different water heater into play has me thinking that whole house filtration would be wise. Based on my budget and previous experience, it seems that nothing exotic is in order. So again, just looking on some guidance.
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Old 12-26-2014, 06:23 PM   #4
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I guess I misunderstood your OP. Still not clear to me whether or not you currently have a salt-based system that you're simply moving, or if it's something you're planning to add since you describe everything as "...will be..." In any case, have you had your water tested by a reputable lab to determine what you actually need? The only thing your scenario leaves out is UV protection, probably because you've never heard of it? Much of what you're contemplating is simply expensive and unnecessary. Unless your water supply is Love Canal, all you really "need" is a quality salt-based softener.
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Old 12-30-2014, 12:04 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by md2lgyk View Post
I guess I misunderstood your OP. Still not clear to me whether or not you currently have a salt-based system that you're simply moving, or if it's something you're planning to add since you describe everything as "...will be..." In any case, have you had your water tested by a reputable lab to determine what you actually need? The only thing your scenario leaves out is UV protection, probably because you've never heard of it? Much of what you're contemplating is simply expensive and unnecessary. Unless your water supply is Love Canal, all you really "need" is a quality salt-based softener.
We do have a salt based water softener. We are hooked up to municipal water. We do not personally engage in lab testing, but quality is regularly published by our water district. Primary undesirable characteristics are hardness (285 ppm/16.7 grains per gallon), residual chlorine and "naturally occurring minerals." Softener or not, some particulate matter does show up in plumbing and devices (I just took about two tablespoons of what looks like dirt from a low point in my hot water recirculation loop). So does calcification. At times we can taste residual chlorine. I'm just looking for basic filtration that might mitigate those issues a bit. I'm especially interested in limiting scale build up in my new, expensive while house tankless hot water system.

Last edited by zippinbye; 12-30-2014 at 12:10 PM.
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Old 01-01-2015, 12:12 PM   #6
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Nobody?
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Old 01-01-2015, 03:15 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zippinbye View Post
We do have a salt based water softener. We are hooked up to municipal water. We do not personally engage in lab testing, but quality is regularly published by our water district. Primary undesirable characteristics are hardness (285 ppm/16.7 grains per gallon), residual chlorine and "naturally occurring minerals." Softener or not, some particulate matter does show up in plumbing and devices (I just took about two tablespoons of what looks like dirt from a low point in my hot water recirculation loop). So does calcification. At times we can taste residual chlorine. I'm just looking for basic filtration that might mitigate those issues a bit. I'm especially interested in limiting scale build up in my new, expensive while house tankless hot water system.
Quote: I'm especially interested in limiting scale build up in my new, expensive while house tankless hot water system.
************************************************** ****
If your salt softener system is working right it should be taking care of any scale build up.

If you want to filter solid particulate that has a specific gravity heavier than water install a sediment tank. A filter following the sediment tank will filter any particulate lighter than water to a point of filter micron capability. If your line from the municipal water supply ever needs repair, the sediment tank and filter will grab all that debris crap that causes so many problems after it gets into the house fixtures.

Pictured is my sediment tank and filter. It does nothing for my calcium enriched well water.
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Old 01-01-2015, 09:22 PM   #8
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I have to echo what SeniorSitizen said: Your softener isn't set properly or just isn't working. I don't recall our water's exact numbers, but it's pretty bad. While building our house, we lived in our RV on the property - in two years, the water heater had to be replaced twice, and none of our coffeemakers lasted more than three months. We've been in the house about four years now, and I've not ever had to replace one or even flush our tankless heater.
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