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General => Real Estate => Owner's Issues => Topic started by: cohee on August 20, 2021, 02:14:29 PM

Title: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: cohee on August 20, 2021, 02:14:29 PM
Hi everyone,

New to TalkIrvine and hoping to learn from everyone here :)

We just bought a new construction house in Orchard Hills and will be moving in in about a month. New house will come with plumbing supply line loop in the garage for an aftermarket water softener system.

In researching, there are so many options for water filtration systems, softener systems, or combo systems.. I'm at a loss as to which type of system is needed for Irvine water, which brand/model, and general considerations for making this decision.
About the house: 3000+ sq ft, 4.5 bathrooms

Anyone with experience recently with water systems that can provide some recommendations? Thanks in advance!  :)


Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: Irvinehomeseeker on August 20, 2021, 02:33:03 PM
i installed a Water Softener with carbon filter and an Reverse osmosis system. The company I got it from is Diamond Pure. Price was reasonable - this was about 3 yrs back. For new homes, i think a water softener is a great idea especially if you have a tankless water heater.
 
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: moc on August 20, 2021, 03:26:56 PM
i installed a Water Softener with carbon filter and an Reverse osmosis system. The company I got it from is Diamond Pure. Price was reasonable - this was about 3 yrs back. For new homes, i think a water softener is a great idea especially if you have a tankless water heater.
 

We also went with diamond pure..same system. Still works great two years later. Definitely worth it!
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: Mety on August 20, 2021, 03:31:43 PM
What's so big deal about water softener? I guess it makes your water less thick, but does it really matter to you guys? Maybe I need to try one. I almost did, but our water was not that thick so didn't go for it.

About Reverse osmosis system, we thought water purifier was a better investment so we did that instead.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: Cares on August 20, 2021, 03:36:30 PM
Also vouch for Diamond Pure. Price was good and install was clean. They over charge for annual maintenance though. Just buy your own filters on Amazon and change it. It cost me $30 whereas there charge $175.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: Maserson on August 20, 2021, 03:40:44 PM
+1 diamond pure.

Was opposed to water softener $ but now think it’s worth it. Less skin irritation and less calcification of water appliances.

Came with reverse osmosis under sink system. Don’t really care about this, I’m used to drinking tap water.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: moc on August 20, 2021, 03:43:07 PM
What's so big deal about water softener? I guess it makes your water less thick, but does it really matter to you guys? Maybe I need to try one. I almost did, but our water was not that thick so didn't go for it.

About Reverse osmosis system, we thought water purifier was a better investment so we did that instead.

It has to do with the hardness of the water here in Socal. Do you get water spots/cloudy spots on glass that just won't come out? Those are hard water spots. The water softener helps keep everything looking nice and it's nicer on your hair/skin when you shower as well. It's not 100% necessary but definitely nice to have.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: Irvinehomeseeker on August 20, 2021, 03:58:31 PM
Also vouch for Diamond Pure. Price was good and install was clean. They over charge for annual maintenance though. Just buy your own filters on Amazon and change it. It cost me $30 whereas there charge $175.

Thank you for this tip!
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: LA2Irvine on August 20, 2021, 04:13:43 PM
We also went with Diamond Pure - twin star water softener and RO system. In case you go with them, there's a coupon on Yelp that should still be valid for a small discount.

I had never owned a water softener or RO system before, surviving mostly on Brita filters. Having these as part of my day-to-day has been a game changer. No more build-up on the shower glass and water tastes way better.

Two tips to think about:
1) If you end up hooking the RO system to your refrigerator (for the water dispenser and ice maker) look into a bypass water filter for your refrigerator. Your refrigerator comes with a water filter so having both the RO system and refrigerator water filter leaves you with tiny ice cubes and low water pressure for the water dispenser. A bypass water filter from your refrigerator's manufacturer should fix this.

2) I'm sure 99% of people will disagree with this one (the guys at Diamond Pure did), but sometimes with newer builds the water line that goes into your garage also goes to your hose line/sprinkler line in the backyard. So if your water softener system uses sodium, your backyard sprinklers will be watering your plants with sodium water. According to our landscaper, some plants don't do great with sodium. An alternative is to use potassium in your water softener system but it's way more $$$.

Just a thought. Just about everybody else who I asked disagreed and said the sodium in softened water is so low that it should be fine for plants. But I didn't want to end up with a dead garden so I've been opting for potassium.

Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: cohee on August 20, 2021, 04:31:34 PM
Thanks guys for the many timely tips and unanimous recommendation on Diamond Pure :) Since everyone really likes them, I will reach out to them to learn more about my options. Just to make sure I understand, the recommended set up from Diamond Pure is the water softener + RO system. This will soften and purify the water?

Many thanks again everyone
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: Irvinehomeseeker on August 20, 2021, 05:34:18 PM
We also went with Diamond Pure - twin star water softener and RO system. In case you go with them, there's a coupon on Yelp that should still be valid for a small discount.

I had never owned a water softener or RO system before, surviving mostly on Brita filters. Having these as part of my day-to-day has been a game changer. No more build-up on the shower glass and water tastes way better.

Two tips to think about:
1) If you end up hooking the RO system to your refrigerator (for the water dispenser and ice maker) look into a bypass water filter for your refrigerator. Your refrigerator comes with a water filter so having both the RO system and refrigerator water filter leaves you with tiny ice cubes and low water pressure for the water dispenser. A bypass water filter from your refrigerator's manufacturer should fix this.

2) I'm sure 99% of people will disagree with this one (the guys at Diamond Pure did), but sometimes with newer builds the water line that goes into your garage also goes to your hose line/sprinkler line in the backyard. So if your water softener system uses sodium, your backyard sprinklers will be watering your plants with sodium water. According to our landscaper, some plants don't do great with sodium. An alternative is to use potassium in your water softener system but it's way more $$$.

Just a thought. Just about everybody else who I asked disagreed and said the sodium in softened water is so low that it should be fine for plants. But I didn't want to end up with a dead garden so I've been opting for potassium.

on the 2nd item - Petaluma from IP has 2 water outlets for garden.  One dispenses soft water and the other regular water.   i use the second one to water my garden.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: Irvinehomeseeker on August 20, 2021, 05:35:56 PM
Thanks guys for the many timely tips and unanimous recommendation on Diamond Pure :) Since everyone really likes them, I will reach out to them to learn more about my options. Just to make sure I understand, the recommended set up from Diamond Pure is the water softener + RO system. This will soften and purify the water?

Many thanks again everyone

RO is for drinking water.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: zovall on August 20, 2021, 05:48:05 PM
Just to make sure I understand, the recommended set up from Diamond Pure is the water softener + RO system. This will soften and purify the water?

The softener will be one tank (or two if you also do a whole house carbon filter) and a brine tank (that contains the salt pellets you add every few months). This softener system will typically be installed in your garage or on the side of your house. This softens all the water that goes through it. And like mentioned above, if softened water goes to water your plants, you will want to use potassium pellets instead of sodium pellets.

Softened water is not purified. The RO (reverse osmosis) system purifies your drinking water and is typically installed under the kitchen sink. They will add a faucet at the sink that will provide the purified water. If you are able to run a line from the RO to the refrigerator, that would be good for getting purified water from the refrigerator and making ice from purified water (the comment above about refrigerator water pressure is something to keep in mind).
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: zovall on August 31, 2021, 07:21:18 PM
Soo.. In my old house, our water softener consisted of 1 large resin unit + 1 brine tank (I did not have a whole house carbon unit). Most of the units I see sold by Diamond Pure and others on Yelp are set up the same way (+1 additional unit if doing a whole house filter).

But, there are many units available on Lowes/Home Depot/Amazon that have the water softener in 1 unit total (resin and brine tank combined). I've got relatives that have such a unit and it has been working fine for over 25 years. Here are similar units by GE and Whirlpool:
https://www.amazon.com/GE-GXSH40V-Grain-Water-Softener/dp/B00D5YRZLU/
https://www.amazon.com/Whirlpool-WHES40E-Softener-Built-Technology-NSF-Certified/dp/B07R3G7LTD/
https://www.lowes.com/pd/Whirlpool-48000-Grain-Water-Softener/3345284

In my new home, garage space is extremely tight and I have to sacrifice cabinet space to fit a softener in.
Does anyone have one of these units where the softener and brine tank are in 1 piece? How has that been working?

Any cons to these devices? I've gone down a rabbit hole researching people talking about Fleck valves vs Clack valves, etc and wanted to see what the TI hivemind has to say.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: hurijo on September 01, 2021, 04:18:58 PM
Also vouch for Diamond Pure. Price was good and install was clean. They over charge for annual maintenance though. Just buy your own filters on Amazon and change it. It cost me $30 whereas there charge $175.

Is this just a pre-filter separate from the softener system?

Thanks guys for the many timely tips and unanimous recommendation on Diamond Pure :) Since everyone really likes them, I will reach out to them to learn more about my options. Just to make sure I understand, the recommended set up from Diamond Pure is the water softener + RO system. This will soften and purify the water?

Many thanks again everyone

If you get a quote from Diamond Pure, please share it. I've always been interested.

Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: cohee on September 14, 2021, 10:48:39 AM
Also vouch for Diamond Pure. Price was good and install was clean. They over charge for annual maintenance though. Just buy your own filters on Amazon and change it. It cost me $30 whereas there charge $175.

Is this just a pre-filter separate from the softener system?

Thanks guys for the many timely tips and unanimous recommendation on Diamond Pure :) Since everyone really likes them, I will reach out to them to learn more about my options. Just to make sure I understand, the recommended set up from Diamond Pure is the water softener + RO system. This will soften and purify the water?

Many thanks again everyone

If you get a quote from Diamond Pure, please share it. I've always been interested.

I called Diamond Pure about getting the systems (softener + RO), and here's a few numbers I got (may be typos or mishearing, if so sorry in advance):

- for Multi-pure softener system + RO $3.1K, tax and installation included
- for Twin star platinum softener system + RO $4650, tax and install included. This one is a bigger system to provide higher flow rate for bigger houses with increased water usage
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: cohee on September 14, 2021, 10:53:15 AM
News from the builder when we did our walk through last week, if we choose a plumber that did not do the original piping for the house for our water systems, we void our builder's warranty for plumbing. I wanted to use Diamond Pure and even called to set up appointment, but now given the warranty issue, I may have to go with Infinity Plumbing Designs.

Does anyone have experience with Infinity? Thanks!
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: Irvinehomeseeker on September 14, 2021, 11:08:14 AM
Also vouch for Diamond Pure. Price was good and install was clean. They over charge for annual maintenance though. Just buy your own filters on Amazon and change it. It cost me $30 whereas there charge $175.

Is this just a pre-filter separate from the softener system?

Thanks guys for the many timely tips and unanimous recommendation on Diamond Pure :) Since everyone really likes them, I will reach out to them to learn more about my options. Just to make sure I understand, the recommended set up from Diamond Pure is the water softener + RO system. This will soften and purify the water?

Many thanks again everyone

If you get a quote from Diamond Pure, please share it. I've always been interested.

I called Diamond Pure about getting the systems (softener + RO), and here's a few numbers I got (may be typos or mishearing, if so sorry in advance):

- for Multi-pure softener system + RO $3.1K, tax and installation included
- for Twin star platinum softener system + RO $4650, tax and install included. This one is a bigger system to provide higher flow rate for bigger houses with increased water usage

For multi pure, try renegotiating 200-300$ down.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: akkord on September 15, 2021, 06:21:10 AM
That pricing has gone up /w Diamond Pure
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: akula1488 on September 15, 2021, 07:27:48 AM
That pricing has gone up /w Diamond Pure
How much % wise?
Also what's the price w/ RO?
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: akkord on September 15, 2021, 07:36:45 AM
Think that twin star was mid/high 3s, don't remember it being 4k+
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: momopi on September 20, 2021, 03:30:30 PM
Soo.. In my old house, our water softener consisted of 1 large resin unit + 1 brine tank (I did not have a whole house carbon unit). Most of the units I see sold by Diamond Pure and others on Yelp are set up the same way (+1 additional unit if doing a whole house filter).

But, there are many units available on Lowes/Home Depot/Amazon that have the water softener in 1 unit total (resin and brine tank combined). I've got relatives that have such a unit and it has been working fine for over 25 years. Here are similar units by GE and Whirlpool:
https://www.amazon.com/GE-GXSH40V-Grain-Water-Softener/dp/B00D5YRZLU/
https://www.amazon.com/Whirlpool-WHES40E-Softener-Built-Technology-NSF-Certified/dp/B07R3G7LTD/
https://www.lowes.com/pd/Whirlpool-48000-Grain-Water-Softener/3345284

In my new home, garage space is extremely tight and I have to sacrifice cabinet space to fit a softener in.
Does anyone have one of these units where the softener and brine tank are in 1 piece? How has that been working?

Any cons to these devices? I've gone down a rabbit hole researching people talking about Fleck valves vs Clack valves, etc and wanted to see what the TI hivemind has to say.


I used to have a Whirlpool WHES40E or earlier model that looks exactly alike.  Had it installed outside and worked fine for almost a decade until the BBQ grill cover I put on top fell apart, then the control panel (plastic) turned brittle from sun exposure and broke.  I think this model consumed too much salt pellets.

We replaced it with an AO Smith 4500 model from Lowes last month.  The unit looks impressive but the top & slide door to salt tank is not well made.  If you're not careful opening it the door may fall off the plastic rails, but it's easy to stick back in.  It has fancy touch screen controls protected by another smaller sliding cover to the side.  For outdoor installation I wouldn't trust it to endure the elements -- I bought a nice heavy duty smoker cover for it.  It seems to consume less salt and can be set to run as needed.

To easy way to install the unit is to purchase "sharkbite" push to connect line in the correct size (both ends!):

https://www.lowes.com/pd/SharkBite-24-in-1-Push-to-Connect-Inlet-x-1-Fip-Outlet-Corrugated-Stainless-Steel-Water-Softener-Connector/1000522547
https://www.lowes.com/pd/SharkBite-24-in-3-4-Push-to-Connect-Inlet-x-1-Fip-Outlet-Corrugated-Stainless-Steel-Water-Softener-Connector/1000522543

Cost of water softner @ Lowes is $600, find a coupon or ask around for one.  The unit is heavy and you will need 2 people to move it around.  While you're at Lowes buy 200 lbs of salt pellets to fill up the unit post-installation.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: akula1488 on September 20, 2021, 04:03:03 PM
My old water softener is kind of DIY. Bought the softner system from Ohio Water Softener Company and hired a plumber to do just the plumbing as we assembled the system poured in resins etc. Total cost $1.2k. it was all copper pipe and it must have cost a fortune now.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: zovall on September 21, 2021, 08:50:40 AM
I used to have a Whirlpool WHES40E or earlier model that looks exactly alike.  Had it installed outside and worked fine for almost a decade until the BBQ grill cover I put on top fell apart, then the control panel (plastic) turned brittle from sun exposure and broke.  I think this model consumed too much salt pellets.

Thanks Momo! It seems that none of the water softener companies recommend those (and they sell their own custom units instead) but I'm glad to hear that it worked fine for so long - even outside! I would need a plumber to install all the lines for it as well in my home.
Title: Re: need Water Softener for new house
Post by: momopi on September 21, 2021, 09:18:55 AM
I used to have a Whirlpool WHES40E or earlier model that looks exactly alike.  Had it installed outside and worked fine for almost a decade until the BBQ grill cover I put on top fell apart, then the control panel (plastic) turned brittle from sun exposure and broke.  I think this model consumed too much salt pellets.

Thanks Momo! It seems that none of the water softener companies recommend those (and they sell their own custom units instead) but I'm glad to hear that it worked fine for so long - even outside! I would need a plumber to install all the lines for it as well in my home.

Professional water softener installation companies will want to upsell you and charge $2,000-$3,000.   You can buy a cheaper unit for $500-600 plus parts (copper pipes, line connectors, etc.) and hire a plumber to install it for you.

I have no doubt that the Whirlpool model could have worked for 20 years if installed indoors.  I had it installed outside and it worked for almost a decade.  The control panel was left exposed to the elements (after the BBQ grill cover fell apart) and deteriorated over past 2-3 years.  My only complaint is that the Whirlpool model can only run daily at specified time and not as needed.  The newer AO Smith model can monitor water usage and run as needed, reducing salt use.
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