11:12AM | 03/27/07
Member Since: 03/25/07
1 lifetime posts
What is best type of water softener?

Does anyone have experience with any type of salt-free water softener that actually works?

Gary Slusser

04:31AM | 03/31/07
Member Since: 02/17/04
112 lifetime posts
There aren't any. The magnets and electronic anti-scale and descalers are not softeners. They do not make water soft because they do not remove any hardness.

They are supposed to prevent and remove water hardness scale but...

The best softener will have a Clack WS-1 control valve on it and correctly sized for your water quality, family size and your SFR (service flow rating) needs.


Quality Water Associates


03:57PM | 04/15/07
Member Since: 04/01/05
32 lifetime posts
Those, so called, no salt softeners are not softener at all. If they advertise as being a softener, then they are not accurate and may even be fraudulent.

These 'low cost' magnets and scale busters are geared for those looking for el cheapo solutions to water problems but are disappointed in the end.

Get an accurate water analysis from an independent source, prferably on-site, and determne what is in your water and then you can better determine what course of action to take.

Learning and understanding water and water treatment is essential to taking the right action.

I prefer the Kinetico, twin-tank, non-electric to handle most water issues with efficiency and lon-term reliability.

Use Bob Villa's web site (below) to understand different types of water softeners.


05:58PM | 04/15/07
Member Since: 04/14/07
1 lifetime posts
I worked for Culligan for years, first a an installer, then in sales. Water softeners all do the same thing, remove hardness in your water. Most softener use ion exchange to remove the hardness from your water. Culligan and others that require salt use the brine solution to clean the media bed. This does, in turn, add sodium to your drinking water.

I looked at the Pelican salt-free softener. It's not an ion-exchange softener so its not the same as a culligan system. It is waranteed for 10 years without a gallon limit. Water filter USA offers our customers a 90-Day Satisfaction Guarantee,. Most companies do not.

I just e-mailed my questions to Water filter USA and am waiting for a response.

Since I am on city water and pay through the nose for water, having it is less expensive than the salt and water.


10:13AM | 04/16/07
Member Since: 04/01/05
32 lifetime posts
My argument is that it must not be advertised as a softener or give any implication that it does what a softener does. Misleading advertising is inappropriate at best and false advertising is fraudulent at worst. This item is often labeled as a filter/softener.

The media is NFS certified against Standard 61, which means that the media adds nothing to the drinking water that would cause adverse health effects. It states nothing concerning the water production or quality.

It is also listed as an ion exchange media. This means it is one of three things: an anion media, a cation media, or a mixed bed media (which I doubt). All resin media, whether cation or anion need to be regenerated or replaced in order to do the job, which is to exchange positively or negatively charged ions for the oppositely charges ions at varying rates and durations.

If the exchange media doesn’t have a means to ‘cleanse’ itself, then it becomes exhausted and must be replaced. Furthermore, I not am unaware of an exchange media that matches the claims of scale build up in piping that Pelican advertises. I would love to learn how these claims are justified.

A” 90-day-money-back” may be just enough time before the owner realizes the effectiveness the investment. The 600,000-gallon tag that this is what the media is ‘designed’ to do, is a long way from any assurance that it actually will last that long. I can’t imagine how difficult to get your money back if not satisfied. I ma sure there are hurdles to jump before that would happen. Who knows?

Still further, any water treatment company that supplies so little actual information concerning the technology needs to be investigated before any investment is set forth.

The seller/manufacturer has no awareness of the actual water quality or the customers’ usage and so any claim must be taken as a panacea and that is very risky. All water treatment sellers must have at least an understanding of the objectives for which a system is to be used.

I hope you have success with your purchase but I wouldn’t change my views on this particular product primarily because of the lack of technical information, methods of advertising and lack of qualifications.

Good luck with your decision.

Andy Christensen, CWS


07:45AM | 04/24/07
Member Since: 04/22/07
1 lifetime posts
My daughter has ezcema and I want to get a water softner that will ease her ezcema. Does this no salt system has the same effect as the one with salt? I've tried the one with salt and it really smoothens your skin and hair. But I really do want a system that uses no salt. Can someone answer my question please?


05:47PM | 04/24/07
Member Since: 04/01/05
32 lifetime posts
If the soft water satisfied you and your concern for you daughter's skin and hair, then what is you objection on slat based systems?

A good softener puts virtually no salt in your water.

Decision are about balancing pluses and minuses. Help me understand what really important to you.

There is a "no-salt SOFTENER" but it is not cheap and is used only for very particular customers.

Gary Slusser

07:39AM | 04/26/07
Member Since: 02/17/04
112 lifetime posts
Everyone, Andy is a Kinetico salesman so take that into consideration when reading what he says. Also, he does his best to prevent internet sales of water treatment equipment to DIYers; especially from me. I upset him a few years ago by calling their "non-electric" water powered control valve centuries old technology.

Andy suggests that you should call a local dealer out to your house. There is no need for a dealer or salesman to come out to your house to give you a choice of equipment or to explain the various choices of the softeners they sell.

If you have a water analysis on your well or your water company's water quality report data, they can size and price whatever it is they want you to own for whatever they want you to pay for it, over the phone.

They really want to come out to the house so they can twist arms to get a contract signed after dazzling you with their high priced and usually proprietary softener with the 'longest warranty in the business!" type sales hype.

If you want to be a DIYer, you can do all that is required with a toll free phone call to an internet dealer.


Quality Water Associates


05:04PM | 04/26/07
Member Since: 04/01/05
32 lifetime posts
Boy, it sounds like someone got out of the wrong side of the bed.

Thank you announcing that I deal with high quality equipment produced by a leading manufacturer in the water treatment industry. I never thought it was necessary to ring my own bell, so I appreciate your revelation.

However, your tone seems a bit like you have a persecution complex. I hope you do well in your business but I can’t help you when you present yourself in such an accusatory, self-pitying light. I can understand your frustrations with what has happened to you recently but I find it hard how others are to blame for your troubles.

Sorry, Mr. Slusser, where do you get the idea that you upset me? Very strange statement! In fact, my retort had been that you were actually understating it by thousands of years, when ancient Egyptians used water driven devices. So please if you want to be more accurate get the perspective correct. But upset me!? What would motivate you to say such a thing? Utter nonsense. Gary, you are a very puzzling fellow.

I am not sure what you mean by "they". I have never twisted anyone’s arm so it couldn't be me you’re talking about. Maybe you are generalizing again for some ulterior motive. One might think that you are slamming the competition and we both know that is not representative of anyone calling himself a professional.

Quotation marks in English are used for a number reasons including. 1. To quote someone word-for-word, 2. Contextual deviation meant for sarcasm, or whit, and, 3. Opposing meaning (READ: not true). So your quoting "longest… whatever" must be one of the second two, as you wouldn’t purposely misquote someone, would you, Mr. Slusser?

What would be your reason to say something that is not true except to attack someone or slam some competitive product for one’s own benefit?

And, even furthermore, all can appreciate your contribution to the thread's original question, as usual.


12:15AM | 11/07/07
Member Since: 11/06/07
1 lifetime posts
I've had a kinetico 4040 in my home for 3 years now and wouldn't ever consider owning another water softener. It uses far less salt and water than my old system. I also own the Reverse Osmosis system and highly recommend it to anyone. I had heard on the internet that Bob Villa uses a Kinetico in his home and thats what initially sparked my interest and got me researching Kinetico.
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