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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We are having some work done on the house that includes moving a lot of water pipes. It would seem to be a good time to install a water softener system.

We have no knowledge about such systems, treating the water for the whole house, so here are a few questions.

  • Can you install them outside and if so do they need to be inside a little cupboard
  • What sort of size would we need, we have two bathrooms but normally only the two of us
  • How often do you need to replace the salt
  • Is the treated water then good for drinking taste wise
  • Any recommendations of makes and models
 

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We are having some work done on the house that includes moving a lot of water pipes. It would seem to be a good time to install a water softener system.

We have no knowledge about such systems, treating the water for the whole house, so here are a few questions.

  • Can you install them outside and if so do they need to be inside a little cupboard
  • What sort of size would we need, we have two bathrooms but normally only the two of us
  • How often do you need to replace the salt
  • Is the treated water then good for drinking taste wise
  • Any recommendations of makes and models
We have one and it works well. We have two bathrooms: One is used daily by two of us the other (shower, basin and toilet); the other is used daily by one (m-i-l) and by guests when we have any.

Ours is located in an outside storeroom to which the mains water is piped and then the softened water feeds all the other outlets in the house. The output can, at times, be a little salty but not offensively so, but, occasionally there is a little overchlorination of the water when it tastes like chicken soup (foul.) We have a three stage filter that supplies water to a small tap (at the kitchen sink) which we use for drinking purposes and the taste is completely neutral, i.e. it tastes of nothing.

Off-hand I can't remember the make, or model (it is a couple of floors up but, if I remember, I will take a look tomorrow; or how much it cost. We use about one 25kg bag of salt every two months.
 

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Ha...

You know, I wanted to ask a question regarding water softeners earlier, but thought people would think it weird!

I'm glad someone brought up the subject, my question is a little different. I'm not sure how much water softener systems cost there, but the one I have here cost almost 12K new, it is a dual tank system because I have a large family (six of us). It provides constant soft water, one tank is cycled while the other one is in use, so there is always soft water. It has a meter, so it works on flow than on a schedule.

Anyway, I was considering bringing it over with me, but was not sure if it would be cheaper just to buy one there. How much do they run there, and where would you purchase one?

Thanks
 

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We have one and it works well. We have two bathrooms: One is used daily by two of us the other (shower, basin and toilet); the other is used daily by one (m-i-l) and by guests when we have any.

Ours is located in an outside storeroom to which the mains water is piped and then the softened water feeds all the other outlets in the house. The output can, at times, be a little salty but not offensively so, but, occasionally there is a little overchlorination of the water when it tastes like chicken soup (foul.) We have a three stage filter that supplies water to a small tap (at the kitchen sink) which we use for drinking purposes and the taste is completely neutral, i.e. it tastes of nothing.

Off-hand I can't remember the make, or model (it is a couple of floors up but, if I remember, I will take a look tomorrow; or how much it cost. We use about one 25kg bag of salt every two months.
UPDATE:
Ours is a Watermark 30 and the filtration (for drinking water) is a GreenFilter 5 stage (not 3 stage.) We can't remember offhand how much but we think that it was about €1100 installed.

We have saved on not having to replace the thermostatic shower controls, which, while you can dismantle them to decoke them, are difficult to clear completely of limescale and because of that have a much shorter life. We now never have to decoke the kettles or the washing machine nor the shower heads. However, since tea requires hard water (coffee is better with soft - we drink mainly coffee except in the summer when the women like iced tea) it is useful to have a tap upstream of the water softener - we have one next to the meter.
 

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You definately really need a seperate feed for the drinking water supply, direct from the mains. (That is Law in England). Easy to install if you are re-fitting as you say.
A water softner with volumetric controls is preferable as this recharges on usage not a scheduled timer. The brine tank needs to be at least 200 litres, ours is 300. Salt useage varies as to local water conditions, ie..how hard your water is, and of course how much water you use. The cost of salt is of very little consequnce in my estimation, no more than 6 euros a month tops.. The difference in life quality more than compensates!
Have a look on Amazon for reviews of popular makes, lots of 4/5 star awards usually a good sign!
 

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I would add that if you can, put the softner outside, either in a shed or cupboard you'll be glad you did in the long term!
Definitely where you won't hear the flushing water during the night.

I should have added that it greatly increases the efficiency of the gas fired water heater that we use when the solar panel is not turning out much.
 

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One more thing; beware if you have a septic tank. Do not put the brine backwash into that system...your little bugs in there don't like it at all at all!:)
 

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Agree...

You definately really need a seperate feed for the drinking water supply, direct from the mains. (That is Law in England). Easy to install if you are re-fitting as you say.
A water softner with volumetric controls is preferable as this recharges on usage not a scheduled timer. The brine tank needs to be at least 200 litres, ours is 300. Salt useage varies as to local water conditions, ie..how hard your water is, and of course how much water you use. The cost of salt is of very little consequnce in my estimation, no more than 6 euros a month tops.. The difference in life quality more than compensates!
Have a look on Amazon for reviews of popular makes, lots of 4/5 star awards usually a good sign!
@country boy, thanks. I agree, we love our system and would hate to be without it/one. It is hard to explain to those who don't have them just how great it makes things. I've been to relatives homes who said they had 'soft' water, and after showering, I believe then don't know what soft water is. :D I will check out Amazon in Spain/Germany.
 

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Check...

One more thing; beware if you have a septic tank. Do not put the brine backwash into that system...your little bugs in there don't like it at all at all!:)
Thanks agian, good to know, we've never been on a septic tank, but what would one do with the brine? 'Sounds like something we have to address if on a septic tank.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If you can contact a water softener company, you can ask them to check your water quality, ask them questions, and then decide which is the best water softener for you.
Thank you for your input, but this thread is 2 years old and no longer relevant for us as we had the work done without installing a water softener.
 
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