ANSWERS TO SOME FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How does your Water Softener work?
An Automatic Water Softener consists of a pressure vessel filled with resin. Located on the top of the pressure vessel is the control valve. All of this is mounted in a cabinet. The mains water is passed through the control valve and down into the vessel. As the water passes across the resin bed, the calcium and magnesium attach to the resin so that the water leaving the unit is soft.
Periodically, depending on how much water is used, the resin needs to be refreshed. This is done by flushing away the calcium and magnesium, then flushing through a small amount of salt (stored in an external brine tank), through the resin vessel. Once this process has been completed, the resin is refreshed and ready to begin again.
How easy is it to Install a water softener?
Installing a Water Softener is almost as easy as installing a Washing Machine or Dishwasher. With a series of 3 valves, it is usual to form a bypass system on the water main, one valve on the inlet, one on the outlet and one on the bypass (normally closed). We suggest using 3/4 inch BSP braided flexi hoses for the inlet and outlet to ensure that there is no reduction in the flow rate. The hose to drain may be hooked over a waste stand pipe (same as a washing machine) and another hose is required for the brine tank overflow. To comply with regulations and bylaws, a check valve (non return) should be fitted immediately before the branch to the water softener and there should be an air gap between the drain hose and the drain. With a little DIY experience, you may wish to carry out the work yourself, alternatively, you may wish to get a competent plumber to do it.
What about maintenance?
Maintaining your Water Softener is easy. All you need to do is add salt. In order to ensure continued trouble-free operation we recommend that you have your Water Softener serviced every two years.
Where will I save money?
Softened water provides real cost savings in service, maintenance and replacement of water heaters, dishwashers, washing machines and showers and also extends their life. It will improve the efficiency of hot water and heating systems - just 1.6mm (1/16") of scale build-up in heating systems will cause a 12% loss in heating efficiency. Softened water can also remove existing scale deposits in hot water and heating systems as well as the scale around taps, in shower heads and stains on bath and basins.
What kind of salt do your water softeners use?
We recommend using only pure, top grade salt in our water softeners. Water Softeners will work much more efficiently and last longer with the use of either GRANULITE granular salt or AQUASOL tablet salt. Aquasol Tablet Salt is suitable for most domestic applications, however Granulite Granular Salt is more suitable for larger machines.
What is meant by "the service flow rate"?
Water will flow through our water softeners at a rate of up to 3,000 litres per hour, however, different models of water softeners have different service flow rates. If the service flow rate is exceeded, hard water will break through.
How do I work out the service flow rate required?
On average 160 litres of water is used per person per day. This normally occurs in two peak periods, one in the morning and one in the evening. A family of four typically uses 700 litres per day but may use 300 litres in an hour in the morning.
Can I drink the water after it has been softened?
Due to a slightly increased Sodium level in the water, Bye Laws state that wherever practicible, a supply of the pre softened water should be connected for drinking and cooking purposes. You may wish to bypass your water softener and leave your kitchen cold tap connected to the hard water, however, there is an alternative:
Simple under sink filter systems may improve the taste and smell of the water you drink and cook with, however, they are unable to remove Sodium and many of the impurities found in our water. A 5 Stage Reverse Osmosis is one of the few systems that will remove the sodium.
What's the difference between a digital TIME controller and a digital METERED controller?
digital Time controllers
With water softener units built with the Autotrol Logix 255-740 digital Time controller, the number of days between regenerations are calculated by the number of people using the water supply, the hardness of the water and the model of water softener.
The water softener will regenerate at the time and day programmed regardless of the amount of water actually used.
digital METERED controllers
Water softener units built with the Autotrol Logix 255-760 digital Metered controller are usually more economic on salt usage due to the water softener regenerating only when the metered amount of water has been conditioned, the unit is factory set to regenerate at 2:a.m. when necessary. The the 255-760 digital metered controller combines a meter and a microprocessor, every day the computer measures how much soft water your family uses. It "learns" your usage patterns, continually monitors changes in usage and regenerates only when necessary. The controller has a self adjusting reserve capacity and knows exactly how much soft water you use each day. It analyzes and adjusts the reserve capacity daily to meet your actual changing usage, as a result, the reserve is never too high (causing it to regenerate more often, wasting salt), or too low (which could cause hard water to break through). The water softener will regenerate when necessary but at the time of day programmed.
Enquiries, Please Call 0845 056 3468