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Old 02-13-2011, 10:38 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pairajays View Post
exrench,

I have a whole house RO system on my MH. It is not hugh, takes less room the small softeners and is very practical for an RV. You must not be up to date on RO systems.

Jim
I am up to date to the extent that I would not want to dechlorinate water and then store it in a huge RV water tank for an indefinite length of time before drinking same.The risk of contamination is unacceptable to me.Water stored in such a situation should have,at least initially,a residual chlorine content.Air-born bacteria will surely contaminate the holding tank through the vent as water is withdrawn.
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Old 02-14-2011, 09:06 AM   #30
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Soft Cell Water Softener

I purchased a Soft Cell Water Softener about 2 months ago. (<b>SoftCell Portable Water Softener</b>) It is working flawlessly in this Texas hard water.

Uses salt pellens for regeneration.

check our trip journal for a picture of our water system.

Personal Trip Journal - Texas Hill Country Adventures. soft cell advertises in FMCA mag.

THere are several manufacturers of RV softeners, but we decided on soft cell after talking with the owner. Prior to purchase I had contacted other manufacturers and all seemed very confident of their products. Many did use regular house salt

Have a great week

Rick
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Old 02-14-2011, 02:55 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by exrench View Post
I am up to date to the extent that I would not want to dechlorinate water and then store it in a huge RV water tank for an indefinite length of time before drinking same.The risk of contamination is unacceptable to me.Water stored in such a situation should have,at least initially,a residual chlorine content.Air-born bacteria will surely contaminate the holding tank through the vent as water is withdrawn.
I don't store the water for an indefinite period. I usually add every other day, sometimes everyday. I live in the MH and use from the tank all day long. I personally think you are attaching too much importance to chlorination after passing through a RO system. There are thousands of RO systems used in homes for drinking and ice making.

Jim E
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:02 AM   #32
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I purchased a Soft Cell Water Softener about 2 months ago. SoftCell Portable Water Softener It is working flawlessly in this Texas hard water.

Rick
Rick,

That looks like a great system. The instructions that I read on their web site doesn't mentioned anything about back flushing the Soft Cell. How do you accomplish that? Also, it states that it will soften 5000 gallons of water, what happens after that. Do you have to replace the resin beads?

Thanks.

Dr4Film ----- Richard.
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Old 02-15-2011, 10:00 AM   #33
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Water Softener Update to Richard

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Originally Posted by Dr4Film View Post
Rick,

That looks like a great system. The instructions that I read on their web site doesn't mentioned anything about back flushing the Soft Cell. How do you accomplish that? Also, it states that it will soften 5000 gallons of water, what happens after that. Do you have to replace the resin beads?

Thanks.

Dr4Film ----- Richard.
Richard.

Thanks for reading the info. The resin is cleaned by removing the softener pre filter and filling the container with Salt Pellens. I use Morton Rust remover type. The water is run through at a very slow rate. It takes about 20-30 minutes for the salt to disappear. Then I flush out the system for a few minutes until water runs clean and no salt taste. The amount of water it will soften depends on the hardness of the original water. In Texas the water is one of hardest in excess of 500 ppm. I softened the water on Sunday Feb 13 and checked the water this morning. Current reading is between 0 and 100 ppm. My test kit is from Aqua Check and it is used to check swimming pools. I would love to find just the test strips that measure hardness but have been unable to locate them in the area. I tested the water that from the camp supply this morning and it showed over 1000 ppm. This is the first time we have used this type of test strips so do not know how accurate. I did find a Sears store locally that gave me 2 hardness only test strips a few weeks ago. Water here after softening was between 1-3 grains of hardness.
Sears was unable to find the supplier of the test strips they have and suggested a swimming pool store.

Hard water is not detrimental to human health but sure is hard on the ole body, dishes, plumbing etc.

I was told by Soft Cell that there is a product called Hack Test Strips but unable to locate them.

From what I was told the resin will last indefinitely, similar to home use. The salt pellens restores the resin to the original. He did tell me that some softeners you have to be careful with the resin as it will escape if you go to empty the softener water from the container.

On the web site is a colored picture of the softening process. I think it is under the instructions section or maybe the brochure.

In fact I think I will email soft cell and verify that info

Good luck in your research and have a great week

Rick
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Old 03-31-2011, 03:58 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by Midniteoyl View Post
Um.. why is drinking softened water 'not wise'? Many, many homes have whole house softeners, including mine..
Here is what the Mayo Clinic has to say about drinking softened water:

Water softeners: How much sodium do they add?

I'm on a low-sodium diet, so I'm looking for ways to reduce my sodium intake. How much sodium does a water softener add to our tap water?

Answer

from Sheldon G. Sheps, M.D.



The amount of sodium a water softener adds to tap water depends on the "hardness" of your water. Hard water contains large amounts of calcium and magnesium dissolved from the soil by rainwater. Some water-softening systems remove calcium and magnesium ions from hard water and replace them with sodium ions. The higher the concentration of calcium and magnesium, the more sodium needed to soften the water. Still, the amount of sodium in softened water that was originally very hard shouldn't be cause for concern.
The majority of sodium in the average diet comes from table salt and processed foods. The water from your tap may add a small amount of sodium to your diet, depending on the type of softener you use, but not a significant amount. As a general rule, an 8-ounce (236 milliliters) glass of softened tap water contains less than 12.5 milligrams of sodium. According to the Food and Drug Administration nutrient guidelines, this is in the very low-sodium range. The best way to decrease the sodium in your diet is by cutting back on table salt and processed foods.
If you're concerned about the amount of sodium in your softened water, there are some things you can do:
  • Water softeners: How much sodium do they add?

    I'm on a low-sodium diet, so I'm looking for ways to reduce my sodium intake. How much sodium does a water softener add to our tap water?

    Answer

    from Sheldon G. Sheps, M.D.



    The amount of sodium a water softener adds to tap water depends on the "hardness" of your water. Hard water contains large amounts of calcium and magnesium dissolved from the soil by rainwater. Some water-softening systems remove calcium and magnesium ions from hard water and replace them with sodium ions. The higher the concentration of calcium and magnesium, the more sodium needed to soften the water. Still, the amount of sodium in softened water that was originally very hard shouldn't be cause for concern.
    The majority of sodium in the average diet comes from table salt and processed foods. The water from your tap may add a small amount of sodium to your diet, depending on the type of softener you use, but not a significant amount. As a general rule, an 8-ounce (236 milliliters) glass of softened tap water contains less than 12.5 milligrams of sodium. According to the Food and Drug Administration nutrient guidelines, this is in the very low-sodium range. The best way to decrease the sodium in your diet is by cutting back on table salt and processed foods.
    If you're concerned about the amount of sodium in your softened water, there are some things you can do:
    • Switch to a type of water-purification system that doesn't replace magnesium and calcium with sodium.
    • Buy demineralized water for drinking and cooking.
    • Soften only the hot water and using unsoftened cold water for drinking and cooking.
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Old 03-31-2011, 04:32 PM   #35
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Quote:
Still, the amount of sodium in softened water that was originally very hard shouldn't be cause for concern.
Quote:
The American Heart Association (AHA) suggests that the 3 percent of the population who must follow a severe, salt-restricted diet should not consume more than 400 mg of sodium a day.
It takes very, very hard water softened by salt to get that much in the typical amount drank each day. And, you can use potassium, which doesnt work as good, IMHO, but does work.
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Old 06-16-2011, 11:48 PM   #36
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Water softener regeneration frequency

We are work kamping for 5 months in MN at a campground with very, very hard water (about 800 ppm on the cheap test strips provided by On the Go). Additionally the iron content is extremely high (plugs the filter in 2 weeks with brown sludge).

To fix this problem I ordered, and just received, an 8,000 grain On the Go softener in the mail today. The instructions that came with the unit provide a formula to estimate how many gallons of water can be softened before regeneration (8,000 grains / ~800 ppm water hardness = 10 gal before regeneration). Since the On the Go brochure says the average 2 person RVers use 50 gal of water/day, this means we will have to regenerate 5+ times a day. Am I missing something or is my math messed up?

What do other RVers use to soften extremely hard water without having to regenerate several times/day? All the portable softeners I can find online are 8k to 24k grain units (or thereabouts) which would still require us to regen several times a day.

Certainly we are not the only RVers with this issue. Any recommendations?

Thanks
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Old 06-17-2011, 07:53 AM   #37
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That is some REALLY hard water. When I was located in CA, we had readings in the 600's and I thought that was bad.

I use the TravelSoft softener, however, I added more resin beads to the unit except for about an inch at the very top. Then I use a clear spare filter housing and fill that with rock salt 3-4 times to charge the resin beads. I turn the filter housing upside down and run a small stream of water through the filter into the TravelSoft until the salt has dissolved and gone into the resin beads.

As always, it depends on how hard the local water is as to how often you need to recharge.

If you happen to be in one place, I've seen residents sign up for a local service where they come out and hook up a large tank to the water system to soften the water. Then they come back every so often to replace the tank. If you plan to stay they for a while, I would do that.

Dr4Film ----- Richard.
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Old 06-17-2011, 08:27 AM   #38
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We use the "On the Go" as well. While in San Juan Bautista, we had to regen after about 300 gallons of water use. Now in San Jose, we get away with about 800 gallons or plus or minus two weeks. Be sure to use "Iron Out" every other month to get rid of the Iron build up on the beads. That will help a lot.
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Old 06-17-2011, 09:38 AM   #39
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On-The-Go softener + Under-the-sink RO

I use an On-The-Go water softener and an under-the-sink 3-gallon Reverse Osmosis (RO) unit for drinking water.

There are two whole house filters for incoming water: a 10-inch 5 micron particulate filter and a 10-inch carbon block filter. These are both necessary for the RO unit and for a UV filter I plan to add.

So far all of this stuff fits in my Newmar's basement water compartment.

Love the On-The-Go softener . . . it recharges with table salt and I plumbed it with quick disconnects so it's easy to get in and out for backflushing.

I looked at a whole house RO system but even with a high pressure pump, the time required to fill my 100-gallon holding tank from such a system was prohibitive -- hours. This amount of time may be ok if you're fulltiming, but not for a part-timer like me.

There's also the issue of "waste" water from any RO unit. RO units use a lot of water. They recover only 5 to 15 percent of the water entering the system. I plumbed my under-the-sink RO unit so that the waste water goes back into the holding tank.

If you have a whole house RO system, there's no place for the waste water to go except on the ground. You'll be watering a lot of grass and trees.

Useful links:
http://www.rvwaterfilterstore.com - the premier store for RVers. The owner, Richard Dahl, is very helpful and responsive.
http://www.vagabondwater.com - the place to go for a whole house RO system. "Engineer Mike" at Vagabond gave me real-world info on a whole house system.
http://www.freshwatersystems.com and http://www.h2odistributors.com - vendors of filtration equipment.
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Old 06-17-2011, 10:47 AM   #40
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I use an On-The-Go water softener and an under-the-sink 3-gallon Reverse Osmosis (RO) unit for drinking water.

There are two whole house filters for incoming water: a 10-inch 5 micron particulate filter and a 10-inch carbon block filter. These are both necessary for the RO unit and for a UV filter I plan to add.

So far all of this stuff fits in my Newmar's basement water compartment.

Love the On-The-Go softener . . . it recharges with table salt and I plumbed it with quick disconnects so it's easy to get in and out for backflushing.

I looked at a whole house RO system but even with a high pressure pump, the time required to fill my 100-gallon holding tank from such a system was prohibitive -- hours. This amount of time may be ok if you're fulltiming, but not for a part-timer like me.

There's also the issue of "waste" water from any RO unit. RO units use a lot of water. They recover only 5 to 15 percent of the water entering the system. I plumbed my under-the-sink RO unit so that the waste water goes back into the holding tank.

If you have a whole house RO system, there's no place for the waste water to go except on the ground. You'll be watering a lot of grass and trees.

Useful links:
http://www.rvwaterfilterstore.com - the premier store for RVers. The owner, Richard Dahl, is very helpful and responsive.
http://www.vagabondwater.com - the place to go for a whole house RO system. "Engineer Mike" at Vagabond gave me real-world info on a whole house system.
http://www.freshwatersystems.com and http://www.h2odistributors.com - vendors of filtration equipment.
The RO system in my MH is much more efficient than you portray. I get one gallon of RO water and one gallon of waste.

You are right about fill time. I am not a full timer. The day before I leave, i fill the tank. We take showers, wash clothes, do dishes and every other thing you do when traveling or stationary. Always turn the system on when utilizing an RV park. Have never ran out of water and it is certainly better on plumbing, shower enclosures, dishes, clothes and etc.

My RO installation consists of five stages, including a 10-inch 5 micron particulate filter and a 10-inch carbon block filter. BTY, the purpose of the high pressure pump is for water conservation, not for increasing conditioning time, although it does that also.

Jim E
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Old 06-17-2011, 04:13 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by Navl AV8R View Post
We are work kamping for 5 months in MN at a campground with very, very hard water (about 800 ppm on the cheap test strips provided by On the Go). Additionally the iron content is extremely high (plugs the filter in 2 weeks with brown sludge).

To fix this problem I ordered, and just received, an 8,000 grain On the Go softener in the mail today. The instructions that came with the unit provide a formula to estimate how many gallons of water can be softened before regeneration (8,000 grains / ~800 ppm water hardness = 10 gal before regeneration). Since the On the Go brochure says the average 2 person RVers use 50 gal of water/day, this means we will have to regenerate 5+ times a day. Am I missing something or is my math messed up?

What do other RVers use to soften extremely hard water without having to regenerate several times/day? All the portable softeners I can find online are 8k to 24k grain units (or thereabouts) which would still require us to regen several times a day.

Certainly we are not the only RVers with this issue. Any recommendations?

Thanks

First I don't think the average RVer uses 50 gallons per day. We use about 12 gallons per day.

But using their numbers:
800 ppm is about 47 grains per gallon

8000 grains / 50 gallons/day = 160 (grains day)/gallons
160 [ (grains day)/gallons]/47 grains/gallons = 3.4 days to regeneration. That's real often.
( that comes from grains/grains = 1, gallons / gallons = 1, leaving days as the dimension.)

Using 12 gallons per day used = (8000/12)/47 = 14 days to regeneration
That is close to the 12 to 13 days we actually see in Bouse Az where the hardness is about 50 grains per gallon.

Here in CO where we are right now, the hardness is 20 grains per gallon and we have to regenerate about once a month as the formula indicates. (8000/12)/20 = 33 days to regeneration.

Take a look at how many days it usually takes to fill your gray tank, divide the capacity in gallons by days and that will give you a good approximation of the gallons per day that you actually use.
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