Water too soft?


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Old 01-27-07, 06:20 AM
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Water too soft?

I just bought a home that came with a water softener. The iron content in our water was unbearable. So, I installed a Fleck 2510 Pyrolox Iron, Sulfur, Manganese, Complete Whole House Filter System. This system has been amazing. No more rust in our sinks, toilets, etc, etc. HOWEVER, now our dishes come out of the dishwasher with a white film that wasn't there before. My question is, is my water now too soft because the new filter is assisting the water softener with it's job? Any input, advice is greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
 
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Old 01-27-07, 07:18 AM
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On the contrary, your softener may not be working.
If done yourself did you hook up the filter and softener correctly?
A hardness test may tell you what is going on.

You may want to run some rust remover through the softener.
 
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Old 01-27-07, 07:25 AM
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Water is either soft or hard. Soft water is "0" hardness. It can not be "too soft"

You mention "iron content was unbearable". What brand of softener? Some brands do not do well with high iron content.

I see from your post history that you had a resin problem a couple years ago. Was that problem ever resolved?

Check that the softener is operating properly. If it is then look elsewhere for the problem BUT, a complete water test would be my first move especially if you are on a well.
 
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Old 01-27-07, 01:42 PM
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Great sugestions from everybody. If the softener is working ,this is a common problem with people using too much soap in the dishwasher. Cut way back on soap and the film will go away. Only if the softener is working.
 
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Old 01-27-07, 03:38 PM
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good point by socalscott. Many people are shocked at how little soap they need with soft water. Try filling the soap holer with 1/2 as much then try 1/4. The dishes will probably be fine with even the lowest amt of soap
 
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Old 01-27-07, 07:29 PM
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There are always numerous explanations to the problems you are describing. Some are more likely than others and sometimes it takes a little experimenting to discover the actual cause or causes. Complete awareness of the situation including water analyses, types of equipment, water flow rates, equipment settings and sequences, plumbing arrangements, etc., can be of great help in solving your problem.

I assume you put the iron filter before the softener, right? The amount of iron previously entering the softener may have shortened its lifespan or working capacity. What brand/type of softener is it? What are your raw water test results in pH, total hardness, iron, and TDS at least.

Depending on the hardness levels it is removing, softeners may leave sodium deposits instead of calcium deposits. You can easily tell the difference by wiping noted surfaces with a moist towel: sodium will come off and calcium will not.

It may be that your salt dosage is too high or your backwash is lacking in time or volume or too low in pressure to remove all the salt (sodium). Chances are more that the amount (or types) of soap you are using can be changed to improve the dishes appearance.

Some water softeners are just not efficient, improperly set, undersized or just dog-tired.

Try draining your water heater of accumulated sludge due to an inefficient water system.

Since your softener was previously fighting iron, it may have been set to do just that, successfully or otherwise, and now it is going beyond recommended settings.

Also, don't use high temperature settings on the dishwasher with regular loads. It tends to ‘bake’ the soaps onto surfaces. This will show up on clear glass surfaces first. Use soaps with no or low phosphates.

I agree with HVACGuy that many are astonished and find it hard to break the habit of using way too much soap when switching to soft water. In fact, Ivory is my choice for bar soap as it as close to pure (99.44%) as they come. You can even shampoo with it.

Most people are still using detergents designed to fight hardness with added synthetic surfactants, polyphosphates, etc., when they are not needed, more expensive and less effective.

http://www.fabrics.net/deterg.asp

Proctor and Gamble IS the world largest water softening company.

Andy
 
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Old 01-29-07, 05:04 PM
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Wow, thanks for all the great responses. Seems as though my softener has stopped working.

My iron level straight from the well is a 10? The water now only has a trace of iron without the softener working.

I didn't do anything to the softener when I put the pre iron filter system in. It is however possible that the softener had enough and gave out. It was only used for 7 years, but the guy at the hardware store that tested the water had the same advice as people on this board. The softener was working OT trying to get the iron out and the media is probably shot.

Now, time to decide where to get the new softener.
 
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Old 01-29-07, 05:19 PM
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You could try using a chemical iron remover in a couple of regen cycles.
The composition of the zeolite doesn't change when it is fouled with iron.
It just coats the surface preventing ion exchange.
 
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Old 01-30-07, 02:58 PM
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Ok, so I did a bunch of reading on the site and went back and thought about the 1st time I took my water to be tested. The water was soft, no problem, but had a high iron content. I also asked the guy why my brine tank had so much water in it. He said to adjust the float. I came home, disassembled, and found the float didn't really have anything to adjust, it's only on a 6 or so inch rod. I put it all back together, never thought anything of it.

I then ordered and installed the new iron filter.

My question is, could I have messed something up in the brine tank? I know the softener was making soft water. I just disconnected it all again just now, it's all pretty simple, I have disassembed 350's before, this should be cake. Is there anything I can check on this float to make sure my softener is getting the brine it needs? It doesen't appear my salk tank is using any salt.

Any input would be great.

Thanks!
 
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Old 01-30-07, 03:39 PM
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More Info

GE AutoTrol 260/463 Control
Checked both the screen and the injector, neither was plugged. Doesn't seem like it's drawing brine.

Thanks again.
 
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Old 02-05-07, 10:31 AM
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What you need to do is monitor it durning a regen. Does it have a backwash? Does it sound like it IS backwashing with a forceful flow of water? Durning the fill phase can you watch the level in the salt tank rise? Then go back down during brining? If all this is happening, then most likely the mechanical portion of your softener is ok. Another test I just found out about recently...taste the drain water immediately after the brining begins. It should first be slightly sweet/bitter...but NOT SALTY. Then after a few minutes/perhaps 5-10, it WILL go salty when the brine rinse finally reaches the top of the resin tank. This lets you know if the brine is actually going INTO the resin tank, and eliminates the possibility of the brine being redirected before it can do it's job. Just a few things to check. I'm no expert, but I'm working on it trying to fix my own unit.
 
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Old 02-09-07, 03:56 PM
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Did the guy who put the filter in, Bypass the softener and forget to put it back on Line? Check the Bypass position. Good Luck
 
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Old 02-09-07, 08:38 PM
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If it's failing to pull brine, check for a clogged injector, a leak at a fitting to the brine line, or a stuck float.

Disconnect the brine line at the softener and try to suck some brine through the line. If it comes up, suspect a leak at the softener connection, in the head or the injector.
 
 

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