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Old 10-31-2013, 08:59 PM
 
Location: california
420 posts, read 972,090 times
Reputation: 600

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I'm planning to install my first water softener, a Fleck 5600 water softener, and am looking for ideas where to put it. The easiest place would be in front of the house, but it would be visible to everyone who drove by, accessible to tampering, and not as accessible to me for adjustments. The most convenient location would be in the 25x30" cupboard where the 40 gallon water heater is now.

However, to put the water softener there, I'd need to replace the gas water heater with an electric tankless. I use a minimal amount of hot water, so the tank sits on pilot, and the gas bill could be discontinued if the tank were replaced. For those who have used tankless water heaters, do you feel one would work just as well as the tank? If so, what tankless models do you recommend. Thanks in advance for replies.
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Old 10-31-2013, 09:58 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
11,633 posts, read 44,679,941 times
Reputation: 12581
First, I would never replace a W/H just for the sake of space- "don't fix what ain't broke".

But with that minute amount of information it would be impossible to speculate on an acceptable location.

Slab, basement, or crawl?
Garage?
Main waterline entrance in relation to W/H, PRV? W/H, PRV, in relation to Kitchen and garage?
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Old 10-31-2013, 11:30 PM
 
Location: california
420 posts, read 972,090 times
Reputation: 600
The house is on a slab and there's no basement.

The garage would be good but it doesn't have the pipes or a drain.

The only outside drains are in front where the pipes come into the house, and on the south side of the house. The latter would be a very good place for the softener but the water pipes don't go to that location. The pipes would have to be run about twelve feet there plus the height of the ceiling from either the attic or the water heater cabinet, routed through the walls, and then back to the cabinet. That would be a good option if it were feasible.

The main waterline entrance is in front, then twenty five feet plus the height to the ceiling to where they go into the water heater cabinet. If PRV means pressure reducing valve then there isn't one. The water pressure is 70 psi. The water heater is in a cabinet in the kitchen. The drain on the south side of the house is just outside the kitchen window, opposite the room from the water heater.
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Old 11-01-2013, 05:53 AM
 
Location: Ridgewood
302 posts, read 1,804,754 times
Reputation: 174
How much piping will you need to install to bypass the exterior hose spigots?

The discharge tubing can be run quite a distance.

I would go with the front porch...
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Old 11-01-2013, 08:10 AM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
11,633 posts, read 44,679,941 times
Reputation: 12581
Retro-fitting a softener on a slab house can be rather difficult (as you're finding), due to the fact that all of the supplies are under/through the slab. And you certainly want to refrain from running supply lines through the attic space (unless you live in the tropics) because of potential freezing conditions.

And yes, you should have a PRV somewhere- usually where the main shut-off valve is inside the home. Ideal pressure for fixtures inside a home should be somewhere around 35psi; NOT 70.

It would probably be in your best interest to contact a plumber who has extensive experience with softener installations, to assess your dilemma.
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Old 11-01-2013, 09:52 AM
 
Location: california
420 posts, read 972,090 times
Reputation: 600
Thanks for the replies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergenite View Post
How much piping will you need to install to bypass the exterior hose spigots?
Those are already bypassed in front, before the water pipe comes into the house.

The front location will certainly be easiest. Regarding the water heater cabinet in the kitchen, when the current water tank goes out, I will be replacing it with a tankless anyway, so getting that done now would be a plus compared to having to replace it spur of the moment at some unknown time in the future, especially as I'm not getting any younger.

Quote:
Originally Posted by K'ledgeBldr View Post
you certainly want to refrain from running supply lines through the attic space (unless you live in the tropics) because of potential freezing conditions.
There is no chance of water pipes freezing in the attic and there might be some up there already. I doubt that it gets below 50 in the attic. The water pressure of 70 psi is perfect for me. There is no main shutoff in the house. If I replaced the water heater then I'd put one in that cabinet along with the softener and a bypass. I might contact someone to look at the piping, in the possibility of putting the softener on the south outside of the house. Were I to replace the WH in the cabinet then there would be no need of this.

Options:
1) Front of house, easiest, quickest, and least expense -- most visible and accessible to tampering;
2) Inside WH cabinet, most convenient, would have new WH & connections -- would have to replace WH;
3) Side of house or garage, convenient & private, wouldn't need to change WH -- would have to run longer piping.

Last edited by jlvs2run; 11-01-2013 at 10:04 AM..
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Old 11-02-2013, 05:08 AM
 
Location: Knoxville
4,110 posts, read 19,395,339 times
Reputation: 4685
Code actually allows pressures up to 80 psi.

A tankless water heater works best when you have a need for a lot of hot water, not as an energy saving tool.
Why not have a plumber look at your situation and make suggestions? Maybe a couple different plumbers? You will get a much better idea from someone that is standing in your house than from someone on the internet.
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Old 11-02-2013, 08:10 AM
 
52 posts, read 41,624 times
Reputation: 75
We replaced our gas hot water heater with a Rheem gas tankless, I will never go back to a regular one again. Ours is located outside on the south facing wall.
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