Author Topic: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question  (Read 1908 times)

Offline beachgirl

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Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« on: Aug 11, 2013, 05:22:59 PM »
We had a plumber out recently to deal with yet another issue with a water softener we bought & had installed by Spencers. (another story for another day)

While he was here the plumber told us that when Shea builds houses & does the pre-plumb for the water softener loop (standard in our house) they do not include the kitchens in those water loops for the soft water.  This was the first we had ever heard of this. He said they do not loop to the kitchen because people drink that water. Does that even make sense? Now...keep in mind this plumber was not a plumber from Shea homes. He was from Spencers.

Has anyone else (with a Shea house) ever heard this before?  We now want to know if Shea really ran the loop to the kitchen or not. This was standard in our house when we built. My husband is going nuts now wondering if the dishwasher & refrigerator have been getting slammed with hard water this entire time and not the soft water he thought.

Thanks.

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Offline golfball

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #1 on: Aug 11, 2013, 05:42:27 PM »
Hes an idiot. Unless he plumbed your loop, and has the proof, he cannot base that comment on anything factual.

in Most cases, the soft water loop bypasses the hose bibs in the house and nothing else.
« Last Edit: Aug 16, 2013, 03:53:38 PM by golfball »
Donít argue with idiots because they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience. óGreg King
Never argue with a fool; onlookers may not be able to tell the difference. óMark Twain
Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him. Proverbs 26:4

Offline CatBalou

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #2 on: Aug 11, 2013, 09:15:23 PM »
We've had two houses out here and both have separate reverse osmosis systems in the kitchen for the sink, dishwasher and refrigerator water.  We also have a water filtration system under the sink along with it.  I'm assuming that the plumber was correct, otherwise you'd be drinking some salty water!

Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #3 on: Aug 12, 2013, 12:07:46 AM »
GB and all,

The water softener in a home "properly" plumbed with a softener loop during the build, DOES NOT feed soft water to the cold water tap at the kitchen sink.  Ideally the softener feeds everything inside the home except the cold water to the kitchen sink, and by extension the R/O Unit and Fridge.  The reason for not providing soft water to the kitchen's cold water tap is simple.  Some individuals are Sodium intolerant, and a properly functioning softener will add @ 35mg of Sodium to the water for each grain of hardness it removes.  In Trilogy my water has a hardness of 10 grains, so the softener adds @ 350mg of Sodium (or Potassium) to the water that flows through it.

Anything that receives hot water, is getting softener treated hot water.

Many softeners have a means of determining when water is flowing through the softener, so it shouldn't be difficult to ascertain if a fixture inside or outside the home is getting soft water.

On homes built without a softener loop, it is common to have everything inside and outside the home receive soft water.

P.S. A properly functioning water softener does not add "Salt" to the water.  If Salt is in the softened water something is wrong.  It is Sodium (or Potassium) that a softener adds to the water.
« Last Edit: Aug 12, 2013, 12:25:09 AM by Dashadeaux »

Offline Jeffrey

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #4 on: Aug 12, 2013, 11:28:23 AM »
I believe Dashadeaux is correct.  The guy I used from American Water said the cold side of the kitchen sink isn't usually plumbed into the loop so you can have an interior source to water your plants with as they typically do not do well on softened water.

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Offline golfball

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #5 on: Aug 12, 2013, 06:57:10 PM »
We've had two houses out here and both have separate reverse osmosis systems in the kitchen for the sink, dishwasher and refrigerator water.  We also have a water filtration system under the sink along with it.  I'm assuming that the plumber was correct, otherwise you'd be drinking some salty water!

Separate RO Systems for the sink and ice maker is so that you are dinking "drinking water" not soft water.
The amount of salt that in the soft water is not even something that can be tasted its so minute. If you can, the softener is broken.

Salt is used to clean the filters of Softeners. Thats it. The filters themselves are made up of zillions of little tiny beads, much like silica beads. These beads, while they feel soft to the touch in your hand, they are actually quite abbrasive under a microscope. During the rejuvination mode, the salt water runs through the filter tank (brine tank) and cleans out the contaminates. (hard water particles and other crap in the water) After this is done, the filter tank is rinsed with fresh clean water to rinse away the salty residue. The ONLY salt that's left over is the trace amounts on the filter beads. Yes, this salt amount is something that can be detected with micro-equipment but is not something the human tongue can taste. If you can, your machine is broken. Period.

Potassium is sold as a alternative to salt pellets at an extreme cost premium and marketed to people with medically induced sodium intake issues. The ironic thing is that the amount of soft water that would need to be consumed in any given day to register a measurable sodium intake as a result would actually kill you from over-hydration. Again, if the machine is testing high salt levels, its broken. Not only that, people dont drink soft water on purpose by in large. They drink reverse osmosis water. Which is also the process that a majority of all bottled water is filtered with.

I also asked my plumber that I use for remodels about the loop and what it feeds. His response was that RARELY the kitchen is excluded because its easier for the plumber to do the whole house. Only in rare occasions and typically with specific request is the kitchen excluded in the soft water. He also inputted that with tract homes, the loop most likely is the whole house except the hose bibs.
« Last Edit: Aug 13, 2013, 11:07:34 AM by golfball »
Donít argue with idiots because they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience. óGreg King
Never argue with a fool; onlookers may not be able to tell the difference. óMark Twain
Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him. Proverbs 26:4

Offline beachgirl

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #6 on: Aug 13, 2013, 03:39:29 PM »
So........nobody really knows the answer.  Thanks for all the input!! It was appreciated.

I guess I will just call Shea and ask. 
They already know me by name there. LOL!
They will be thrilled to hear from me AGAIN. Last year at our 5 year mark we had a major water leak .......in the pipe that ran from the water meter to the house BUT it was the connection that was right under the corner of our foundation.
It was cross-threaded and had finally broke (Shea's plumber's mistake) and since it was under the tip of the corner of our foundation it became a "warranty issue".  Shea was NOT THRILLED AT ALL since our house was over 5 years old. It was a huge mess and took almost a month to get the entire thing completely fixed and termite retreat done (Again...Shea's expense).
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Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #7 on: Aug 13, 2013, 06:00:12 PM »
Beach,

You've been given the correct answer, and it is that your kitchen cold water tap is excluded from the soft water loop.  This you can take to the bank.  Unless the plumber messed up, every home that Shea builds with a softener loop, will "E X C L U D E" the cold water kitchen tap from the loop.  "Rarely" doesn't apply.

GB's plumber friend must be his alter ego, and they are both wrong.  Certainly with regard to the softener loop, and so misleading in their description of the softening process.

Offline golfball

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #8 on: Aug 13, 2013, 09:09:51 PM »
Dash...

Did YOU plumb every house that Shea builds?

If the answer is;

Yes. Then you are GUARANTEED to be right.

No. Then you cannot speak with ANY level of CERTAINTY accuracy whatsoever. Especially enough to say "This you can take to the bank."

My plumber is not my "alter ego" he is actually a plumber that worked for Younger brothers plumbing and various other plumbing companies that have plumbed THOUSANDS of tract homes all over the valley including Shea homes and thats what he said. And as far as my description of the process, its DEAD ON and 100% accurate based on my experience in that business as a minority owner and sales person for... wait for it...... A water purification company that sold Water softeners and RO systems. We all toured the factory the machines are made in here in town and were all educated so that when we spoke, it was with an educated tongue. You should try it.

Maybe Shea active adult makes sure the kitchen is excluded because the likelihood of Senior Citizens having Sodium issues is higher than the rest of the population.

Additionally, your quote of sodium content being 350mg is also based on your database of imaginary information.
See; http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/sodium/AN00317 

This one is straight from the Morton salt Website. (what do they know right?)
http://www.mortonsalt.com/faqs/water-softening-faqs

If I am using salt in my water softener, how much sodium is in the soft water?
The amount of sodium in soft water is directly proportional to the hardness of the untreated water, and for most water supplies it is not very high. For each grain per gallon of hardness, multiply by 7.9 to convert to milligrams of sodium per liter (a liter is slightly more than a quart). For instance, water with 15 grains/gallon hardness will contain118 milligrams of sodium per liter after softening. Thus, 2 liters of water per day provides less than 250 milligrams, which is small compared to the normal daily intake. If you have any health concerns about consuming or cooking with salt-softened water, please consult your physician.

Soooo, do you have any MORE fact based data to share with us? Or just info you pull out of thin air like the rest you seemed to have shared on this topic?
« Last Edit: Aug 14, 2013, 07:00:25 AM by golfball »
Donít argue with idiots because they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience. óGreg King
Never argue with a fool; onlookers may not be able to tell the difference. óMark Twain
Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him. Proverbs 26:4

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Offline beachgirl

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #9 on: Aug 14, 2013, 08:15:36 AM »
Shea didn't only use Younger Brothers up here.........or even  consistently on all houses our neighborhood.  We learned that with our mess of a leak last year.  They also used Epic. 

Also not all plumbers know what they are doing otherwise the cross-threaded pipe would have never happened in the first place AND PASSED CITY CODE INSPECTION.......HOW DOES THAT EVEN HAPPEN????

Thanks everyone!!
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Offline golfball

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #10 on: Aug 14, 2013, 08:25:16 AM »
Beach...

I think theres not really a standardized way of doing a water loop. CLEARLY theres some ambiguity as to how they are looped.

Im sure that if you built a custom home you could request your loop to be any way you wanted it however in the "blow and go" world of tract building, things like this seem to be vastly different.

For me, I would want ALL my home to be looped except hose bibs. I use an RO machine for drinking water so I would care less about soft water at the kitchen sink.

Thats just me tho... maybe others want things different.

Donít argue with idiots because they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience. óGreg King
Never argue with a fool; onlookers may not be able to tell the difference. óMark Twain
Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him. Proverbs 26:4

Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #11 on: Aug 14, 2013, 09:21:56 AM »
Hey GB,

I had a warm fuzzy my post would get a rise out of you.

OK, to level set this part of my post I'll iterate a bit.  The original poster begins this discussion by inquiring whether or not a pre-plumbed softener loop includes the kitchen sink, commenting in the process that their plumber told them it does not.

The very first person that answers is GB, calling the plumber an "Idiot", then making an absolutely false statement about only outside hose bibs are excluded and nothing else.  I read this with some astonishment.  Why would GB make such a statement?  The "idiot" thing is just GB being GB, but to misinform is out of character.

Staying with the kitchen included yes or no question (it is both yes and no), let me ask you a something.  Presuming you will agree there's a lot of RO units setting under a lot of kitchen sinks all of which are providing non-softened drinking water.  You readily admit an RO unit is there to provide non-softened drinking water.  I agree with you on this.  Why do you think the RO units are setting under the kitchen's sink, and why do you think the RO unit gets its water from the kitchen's cold water supply line?  Are there two cold water supply lines under the kitchen sink... ummmm that would be, no.  The RO unit is under the sink so it can get its non-softened input water from the kitchen's cold water supply.  Kinda makes sense doesn't it.

The kitchen sink is both included and excluded from the softener loop, because the hot water is definitely in the softener loop.

OK, about my imaginary 350mg Sodium statement.

When I tell you that each grain of Calcium or Magnesium salts removed from the water adds @ 35mg of Sodium to a gallon of water, that is an accepted industry measurement, and it is @ 35mg simply because that is the combined weight of the Sodium ions necessary to remove a grain of hardness.  If you multiply the 35mg by the number of grains removed, you'll know how much Sodium is being added to each gallon of softened water.  This is not an imaginary (or average) weight.

The Mayo Clinic link confirms in the first paragraph that the amount of Sodium is tied to the hardness of the water.  In the second paragraph, without any reference to water hardness Dr. Sheps states an average 8oz glass of softened water contains 12.5mg of Sodium.  That 12.5mg equates to 200mg per gallon, which is what one could expect when softening water that has a hardness of 6 grains per gallon.

The Morton link uses 32mg of Sodium per gallon for each grain of hardness removed.

OK, at your discretion I'll use 32mg per grain instead of 35, that's still 320mg of Sodium added to each gallon of water softened at my home, simply because the water at my home has a hardness of 10 grains.  That equates to 20mg of Sodium for each 8oz glass of water, and one can get an elevated level of Sodium without over hydrating.

About your explanation of the softening process, I'll just say this.  You have the basics, but the way you describe it confuses the listener, particularly when you refer to the "Filter Tank" as the "Brine Tank".  It is a softener, not a filter.  They are resin beads not filter beads.  You call it rejuvenation, the softener manual calls it regeneration.  Why make it so confusing?
« Last Edit: Aug 14, 2013, 09:37:43 AM by Dashadeaux »

Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #12 on: Aug 14, 2013, 09:32:07 AM »
Beach,

Shea built my home, so I can empathize with you about plumbing issues.  When my home was built, Shea used a company called Riggs plumbing (I believe they are now Epic).  The plumbers included one of my outside hose bibs in the softener loop, excluding the cold water to a bathroom in the process.  Maybe GB's plumber friend worked on my home... ;)

As I tried to explain to GB, there is a standard for the softener loop, and that standard excludes the kitchen cold water.  Virtually every (and maybe even every) RO unit installed uses non-softened water as its input.  An RO unit setting under a kitchen sink gets its input water from the kitchens cold water supply line because that is non-softened water.

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Offline phxflyer

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #13 on: Aug 14, 2013, 10:19:51 AM »
Beach,

Shea built my home, so I can empathize with you about plumbing issues.  When my home was built, Shea used a company called Riggs plumbing (I believe they are now Epic).  The plumbers included one of my outside hose bibs in the softener loop, excluding the cold water to a bathroom in the process.  Maybe GB's plumber friend worked on my home... ;)

As I tried to explain to GB, there is a standard for the softener loop, and that standard excludes the kitchen cold water.  Virtually every (and maybe even every) RO unit installed uses non-softened water as its input.  An RO unit setting under a kitchen sink gets its input water from the kitchens cold water supply line because that is non-softened water.


During the Boom it seemed what Shea was doing was completely random, there were no standards! Get em built and get em closed.
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Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #14 on: Aug 14, 2013, 11:12:37 AM »
Flyer,

We are talking about a softener loop excluding the kitchen faucet's cold water supply, that is all.

Can we agree RO units use non-softened water?
Can we agree installing an RO unit in a home built in Trilogy or Vistancia, does not require the installer to run a separate water line for an RO unit in the kitchen?

For years it has been standard practice to exclude the kitchen faucet cold water from the softener.

Offline phxflyer

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #15 on: Aug 14, 2013, 01:29:54 PM »
Flyer,

We are talking about a softener loop excluding the kitchen faucet's cold water supply, that is all.

Can we agree RO units use non-softened water?
Can we agree installing an RO unit in a home built in Trilogy or Vistancia, does not require the installer to run a separate water line for an RO unit in the kitchen?

For years it has been standard practice to exclude the kitchen faucet cold water from the softener.

I am aware of that, I'll just say it turned out that our kitchen sink was not excluded from the water softener (Shea Screw-up?). Which is why we elected not to install a water softener, the cost to run a separate line to the sink made it a non-starter.

They were building them fast and furious and the attention to detail and standardization (at least in my neighborhood) was abysmal. We already had to have the slab torn up several times to correct plumbing issues prior to closing.

You know?  Come to think about it, I rather forget about that POS house..
« Last Edit: Aug 14, 2013, 01:40:04 PM by phxflyer »
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Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #16 on: Aug 14, 2013, 01:45:40 PM »
Without a softener installed, how does one determine the cold water is in the loop?

On another topic, does your home have a whole house shutoff valve that bypasses the fire sprinkler and irrigation system?  If not, putting a shutoff valve in the softener stub out is a good idea.  You can shutoff the water without any exterior indication you are not at home.

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Offline phxflyer

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #17 on: Aug 14, 2013, 01:54:06 PM »
Without a softener installed, how does one determine the cold water is in the loop?


I believe that would be difficult without "digging into your system" I'm guessing, but a plumber should be able to figure it out.

In our case, the installation guy discovered it during the installation attempt.

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Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #18 on: Aug 14, 2013, 01:56:04 PM »
Thanks for the clarification.

Someone in another forum asked if the softener bypass valves can be used to determine whether or not the kitchen cold is excluded.  I tried at my home.  The answer is yes, by turning "only" the output side of the softener to bypass.  With output set to bypass, the hot water runs a few seconds then flow is reduced as the heater tank pressure drops.  The cold water continues to flow freely.
« Last Edit: Aug 14, 2013, 02:09:54 PM by Dashadeaux »

Offline beachgirl

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #19 on: Aug 14, 2013, 03:47:50 PM »
I am really sorry I asked this question here now.  Sorry to bother everyone. I feel like a plumber now though.  :)

Phxflyer.......we have seen several houses in our neighborhood have their slabs drilled into for plumbing issues as well. Neighbors across the street had a major leak in a wall in the master closet recently and they had no clue.......mold galore was hidden in the walls and behind the clothes. Entire master bath had to be torn completely apart and redone.
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Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #20 on: Aug 14, 2013, 04:32:09 PM »
Beach,

Don't be sorry.  We've all learned something in the exchange.

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Offline golfball

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #21 on: Aug 14, 2013, 06:03:37 PM »

Staying with the kitchen included yes or no question (it is both yes and no), let me ask you a something.  Presuming you will agree there's a lot of RO units setting under a lot of kitchen sinks all of which are providing non-softened drinking water.  You readily admit an RO unit is there to provide non-softened drinking water.  I agree with you on this.  Why do you think the RO units are setting under the kitchen's sink, and why do you think the RO unit gets its water from the kitchen's cold water supply line?  Are there two cold water supply lines under the kitchen sink... ummmm that would be, no.  The RO unit is under the sink so it can get its non-softened input water from the kitchen's cold water supply.  Kinda makes sense doesn't it.


No. RO units are under sinks because the spout that accesses the water is typically at kitchen sinks as well as the feed line to the refrigerator ice maker. Additionally, water, once passed through RO system is completley changed irrelevant of the source being soft or hard. In fact, if the water is soft FIRST, the RO system does less work and lasts longer because it doenst have to filter the particulates of hard water.



The kitchen sink is both included and excluded from the softener loop, because the hot water is definitely in the softener loop.


MAYBE. Depending on who plumbed it. Since it was neither you or I, we will NEVER know unless someone wants to pull a copy of Beach's plan and find the diaphragm the plumber did at build.

 
« Last Edit: Aug 14, 2013, 11:33:38 PM by golfball »
Donít argue with idiots because they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience. óGreg King
Never argue with a fool; onlookers may not be able to tell the difference. óMark Twain
Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him. Proverbs 26:4

Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #22 on: Aug 15, 2013, 02:17:03 AM »
GB,

You never cease to amaze me...!

Next you'll be telling me its common for homes to have a second hot water heater so the kitchen hot water can be out of the loop, or maybe you know of another way to get hard water from the heater at only the kitchen sink.

At least we can agree on the RO unit removing Calcium hardness.  Tonight the cold water coming from the kitchen faucet tests at 180 ppm which is spot on 10 grains per gallon.  The hot water from the same faucet tests at less than 10 ppm (which is definitely soft), as does the RO unit.  As for the rest, I recognize hopelessness when I see it...

On another topic, have you found a way to make clear ice cubes in the fridge...?

Beach, If you like I'll be more than happy to test your water's hardness to help quell this debate.  The tests takes only a couple minutes and costs nothing.  I also have set my softener to provide all the soft water I need, while using less than three 40 lb bags of Potassium Chloride per year.  My home uses 40-50 gallons of softened water per day, so someone using 100 gallons a day can expect the use @ 6 bags of Salt or Potassium per year.  I'll share the setup info if you like.

Cheers...

Offline Lefty

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #23 on: Aug 15, 2013, 06:06:25 AM »
After reading this thread up to this point, I'm in agreement with what Phxflyer and GB are saying. I've got proof that the kitchen sink in my Shea home is on the soft water system as I took pictures of the plumbing while it was in the framing stages. The hose bibs are the only thing not on soft water. Now, I'm not saying that it is "right", it just is what it is...

My recommendation to Beach is: if you want to put in a soft water system, include an RO in your plans. I'd budget ~$500 in equipment and parts if you do it yourself.

Lefty

Offline azsunshine

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #24 on: Aug 15, 2013, 08:36:15 AM »
I have to back-up what Dash is saying.  We live in Trilogy and Riggs/Epic did our plumbing.  We were told by them as well as by our new plumber that the cold water in the kitchen is NOT hooked up to the water softener.  Our home is 7 years old.  We also have an RO unit under our sink.

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Offline bobb

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #25 on: Aug 15, 2013, 12:13:50 PM »
I need to hear Skips thoughts on this topic before I can take a side. For all we know, this could be the HOA's fault.
« Last Edit: Aug 15, 2013, 12:19:08 PM by bobb »

Offline beachgirl

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #26 on: Aug 15, 2013, 01:02:46 PM »
Leflty.....We already have the water softner...........it was that plumber's comment that actually started this conversation mess.

bobb........Yesterday as I sat and read through all the discussion I posted my apology for starting this post. The reason being is Skip is going to chime in at some point and blame the HOA somehow.

Thanks everyone. I think I have enough information to go on now. 
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Offline phxflyer

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #27 on: Aug 15, 2013, 03:41:23 PM »
I need to hear Skips thoughts on this topic before I can take a side. For all we know, this could be the HOA's fault.

Too Funny...
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Offline golfball

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #28 on: Aug 16, 2013, 03:47:38 PM »

My Shea house was plumbed everything soft except the hose bibs.
GB,

Next you'll be telling me its common for homes to have a second hot water heater so the kitchen hot water can be out of the loop, or maybe you know of another way to get hard water from the heater at only the kitchen sink.

Why would anyone want their kitchen hot water excluded?

Im totally lost.

Bottom line is real simple Dash...
Did YOU plumb every single house in Vistancia built by Shea?

I didnt. And unless you did, then you are NOT 100% on what youre saying. Period. You're sharing what you were TOLD. Which is exactly what I did.

Bobb... thats funny. Well played.
« Last Edit: Aug 16, 2013, 03:54:00 PM by golfball »
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Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #29 on: Aug 16, 2013, 09:59:10 PM »
GB,

About my kitchen hot water being excluded statement directed to you.  I have read in these posts, a statement about the kitchen sink being excluded, for that statement to be true both hot and cold have to be excluded.  I mistakenly attributed the kitchen sink excluded statement to you.

GB, of course I didn't plumb every house.  That doesn't alter the fact that Shea says they exclude the cold water faucet, and unless the plumbing sub makes an error their home's with a loop will have kitchen cold excluded.  No doubt you've been in more homes than I, but "EVERY" home with a softener loop I have owned or worked in did exclude the kitchen cold no matter the builder.  From my perspective, "including kitchen cold is the exception".  Lets agree that you and I disagree on that point and move on... what say you.

So, have you found a way to get clear ice from the fridge... has anyone?

Offline 3Monkeys

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #30 on: Sep 09, 2013, 03:58:33 PM »
This had me SO CURIOUS about our system.  Our contractor told me that our home was built with everything in the loop EXCEPT for:

1.  the outside hose bibs
2.  the fridge
3.  the kitchen sink. 

Our home is less than a year old.  Interesting al the differences!!

Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #31 on: Sep 09, 2013, 11:16:36 PM »
3M,

The hot water at the kitchen sink is softened, unless you have a second water heater that supply's hot water to the kitchen sink.
« Last Edit: Sep 10, 2013, 02:29:05 AM by Dashadeaux »

Offline Walter-Skip

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #32 on: Sep 10, 2013, 07:50:13 AM »
Hello, my two cents. Dash is correct.  There is no soft water going to the kitchen cold water, the outside bibs, and the fridge.  The dishwasher, gets soft water as it is connected to the hot waterline in the kitchen. All bathrooms have soft water, because of showers and baths.  The washing machine, soft water.  If one uses salt for softening, you do not want to use soft water to water house plants, thus most people using the kitchen cold water, not any of the bathroom cold water faucets.  We use potassium, I use enough salt on my food everyday. ha ha ha  If your ice cubes are cloudy, no soft water. That is what I know about my house, as I checked when my house was being built.

Offline 3Monkeys

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #33 on: Sep 10, 2013, 08:38:20 PM »
3M,

The hot water at the kitchen sink is softened, unless you have a second water heater that supply's hot water to the kitchen sink.

Thanks!  Maybe that is why I don't see a lot of calcium build up in my sink area...

So I have to ask...what the rationale for not putting the fridge in the loop?  I would have thought it would be better for my appliance water lines to be in the loop. 

Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #34 on: Sep 11, 2013, 01:15:56 AM »
3M,

I can only guess at the rationale of leaving the fridge out of the loop.  A couple things come to mind.

First, there's the health issue of those being Sodium intolerant.  If the Fridge is in the loop, and the softener uses Salt, the ice is made with an elevated level of Sodium.  An exception is made when the fridge gets water from an R/O unit.  The R/O unit filters Sodium from the water.

Second, if there's an R/O unit feeding water to the fridge, the fridge "is" getting soft water.  As GB indicated in an earlier post, an R/O will remove virtually all the Calcium from the water, plus a bunch of other stuff.  Not to go off on a tangent here, but an R/O unit makes water more acidic, and some make the claim R/O water actually is bad for the fridge.  I'm not one of those that supports this claim.

Offline Walter-Skip

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #35 on: Sep 11, 2013, 05:41:26 AM »
Hello,  I would think economics. The builders run only one cold and one hot water line to the kitchen. And the fridge at its location, being closest to the cold water line in the kitchen,  is supplied from that cold water line, which is not soft water. The fridge's water line, usually taps into the cold water line in the kitchen, , does not have a separate cold water line.  My best guess.

Offline 3Monkeys

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #36 on: Sep 14, 2013, 10:16:51 AM »
Interesting.  Thanks so much WS and Dash.  :)  Both make complete sense.  Well, after almost a year, no calcium build up on my fridge's water dispenser...so I guess I will count myself lucky!  I can only imagine what the water lines look like going into it, though. 

Offline brandy1976

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #37 on: Sep 15, 2013, 05:21:06 PM »
I have two black cars and have a hard time with water spots. To address this I purchased a unit that removes a significant amount of the total dissolved solids (TDS). The desiccant has to be replaced after so many uses so I also have a TDS meter that measures in parts per millionth (PPM). Here are my water measurements. They are: kitchen sink 219PPM, bathroom sink, 221ppm, outside hose bib 398PPM, 5 stage reverse osmosis unit (RO) connected to the cold water line to the sink 29ppm. I also have my refrigerator connected to the RO unit.

This data leads me to believe the water softener is connected to the sinks in the house.

Offline Walter-Skip

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #38 on: Sep 17, 2013, 07:40:27 AM »
brandy,   hello.  There is always the possibility of anyone's home when built, that they sent the cold soft water line  to your kitchen sink or through out the whole house. As mentioned in early posts by me and others,  if using salt as a softener, not a good idea in the kitchen, as salt is and can be a real health issue . Kills house plants also. There are exceptions to everything .I guess the best way to look at this is are you happy ??  If so, great. I had an old Victorian home built in 1890 back in N.Y., added salt soft water , and had to do it to  the main cold water line for the whole house using soft water.  No choice, cost wise.

Offline Dashadeaux

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Re: Builder Pre-Plumbed Water Softner Loop Question
« Reply #39 on: Sep 17, 2013, 04:17:06 PM »
Salutations Brandy,

There was no indication of whether you tested the hot or cold water at the kitchen sink.  I also have a TDS meter and the cold water at the kitchen sink contains the same level (@ 400) of TDS as the outside hose bib.  Water coming out of the RO tap measures at 29 ppm TDS.  The RO unit is doing a good job.

As an alternative means of checking.  Many water softeners have a flow indicator, perhaps yours does too.  If your softener has a flow indicator, why not check it while running only cold water at the kitchen sink.  There is something to be aware of when using the softener's flow indicator.  Some flow indicators are very sensitive and turning on any water anywhere, including outside hose bibs, will cause the flow indicator to illuminate momentarily (mine stays on for @ 10 secs).  This is due to a change in water pressure at the softener's outlet, which jiggles the flow emitter.  So give the water pressure a few seconds to stabilize after turning on a faucet, before checking the flow indicator.

 

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