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Dirtmag for potable water ?

Dave Carpentier
Dave Carpentier Member Posts: 169
We use a 10 micron carbon type water filter for the house (well water).
We also have some amount of iron in the water.

Toying with the idea of ordering two 1" dirtmags.. one for the new boiler install, and one to replace our inline household water filter.
Silly idea ?
30+ yrs in telecom outside plant.
Currently in building maintenance.

Comments

  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 16,278
    Nope, sorry. It is not low lead, and it is a multi pass device. It takes 10- 20 passes to get all the particles down to 5 micron size.

    Inline filters are good for wells as you can adjust the cartridge to get the desired effect.
    Carbon for taste and odor, various micron sizes for sediment, phosphate dosing cartridges, etc.

    I always suggest having the well tested occasionally as quality can change based on the aquifer. You need to base the treatment on what you are trying to "fix" with your water.

    I feel RO is overkill most times, but many places in NW Canada it is a must with sky high TDS and hardness.
    Our wholesalers up there sell $20- 40,000.00 residential systems in some cases just to make the water live-able.

    It is often a multi step process depending on the well quality. Bacteria may need UV or chlorine, then filter to remove taste from the chemicals, possibly an ion exchange for softening, polishing filters at drinking water taps. There is no one treatment fits all.

    Not to forget magnets :)
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    PC7060
  • Dave Carpentier
    Dave Carpentier Member Posts: 169
    Thanks Hotrod. I suppose I shouldnt complain.. we have lots of water and (afaik) it only has the hardness (15) and iron (3). With the 10 micron carbon filters and the softener set to 30 or 35, it takes care of things.
    I know of people with far more elaborate systems.
    $30 a month or so for filters and salt. I should count myself lucky.

    30+ yrs in telecom outside plant.
    Currently in building maintenance.
    PC7060
  • WMno57
    WMno57 Member Posts: 303
    edited June 19
    30 years of experience here owning 3 different properties with wells and softeners. The water treatment "Professionals" often oversell equipment that is not needed. Softeners alone are surprisingly good at dealing with low to moderate amounts of iron and sediment. A water softener is a giant back-washing self-maintaining filter.
    My opinion: Remove the filters, just use a softener. Also, I think the more expensive (yellow bag) rust remover salt makes the water taste off. I use plain solar salt. Rock salt works fine too, just have to clean the brine tank more often. (One reason why you should never buy a cabinet style softener without a separate brine tank.)
    DO NOT PUT SOFTENED WATER IN A HYDRONIC HEATING SYSTEM. Sodium is inversely soluble in relation to heat. Calcium, and magnesium plate out into scale (think tea kettle or coffee maker) which is less of a problem and will not cause corrosion. Sodium will stay in solution and corrode the boiler.
    Unsoftened well water is a lesser evil for a boiler. Better yet, fill with dollar a gallon distilled water from Walmart. Add a little unsoftened well water if you are paranoid that your "ultra-pure" (it isn't) Walmart distilled water is "hungry' and will eat the boiler (it won't).
    Carbon filters that are back washed with chlorine leave behind a derivative of chlorine that you should not be drinking.
  • WMno57
    WMno57 Member Posts: 303
    If your water softener does become iron fouled, easy to clean it with Super Iron Out (if you have a separate brine tank)
  • Dave Carpentier
    Dave Carpentier Member Posts: 169
    I've only had two water softeners (both cabinet types) over the 30-ish years here. First 5 with none, then one that lasted 20 years (changed media once, replaced rotary valve and other parts), and Im hoping this current one lasts a while. Tried a handful of different salts, settled on Windsor as being the most reliable and doesnt clump/bridge.
    Setting the "hardness" to 35 works very well at eliminating the iron but I get a bit guilty feeling because we dump into the septic field (20 years so far, field appears happy, fingers crossed). I'd rather set it back down to 30 and instead use rinse/backwash adjustments to better effect.. I just havent researched the pros/cons. In any case, we dont want to overload the septic (more important than the salt load going out, they say).

    The notion of the Dirtmag was for potentially reducing the number of carbon filters needed and perhaps catching some of the iron. That idea is out now.

    Not sure what you mean about carbon filters backwashed with chlorine ? We're on a well, our filter is ahead of the softener, and the filter just gets tossed out about every 5 weeks.

    30+ yrs in telecom outside plant.
    Currently in building maintenance.
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 16,278
    There are iron specific filters. I had one on a home in Utah, another in Missouri. Not worth fighting high iron with ion exchange softeners.
    Iron Curtain was one brand. Compressed air into the contact tank, a bunch of gravel in the second tank. Discharge came out blood red when it backwashed. Cut down considerably on salt consumption on the softener, took the rust smell away, and cloths came out white, finally.

    The type and amount of iron needs to be determined.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    GGross
  • WMno57
    WMno57 Member Posts: 303
    edited June 19

    Not sure what you mean about carbon filters backwashed with chlorine ?

    My elderly neighbor was oversold one of these by a water treatment pro. Three tanks.
    Tank 1- (greensand?) oxidise the iron with chlorine injection.
    Tank 2- remove (mostly, kinda, sort-of) the chlorine with carbon.
    Tank 3- traditional water softener.
    All three tanks have a scheduled backwash/regen. The water treatment man told her "how white her shirts could be", but he can't be a man cause he doesn't DIY the same projects as me.
    Me? Same water, same well depth, same aquifer, 20 year old softener, no filters. My shirts are as white as can be. My shirts are whiter than rock stars from a cold cloudy island! And I still have 3 Grand in my pockets.
    Super Iron Out WHEN NEEDED to clean a iron fouled softener. Regen the softener at least once a week needed or not to prevent iron fouling.
    More here re greensand and chlorine injection vs potassium permanganate. https://www.well-water-report.com/2013/10/a-short-q-about-greensand-filtration.html
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 5,506
    i mean oxidizing it in to a particulate then mechanically removing the particulate is how you remove iron ions.
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 2,544
    Hi Dave, You might want to look into softening with potassium instead of sodium as it could be easier on the septic field.

    Yours, Larry
  • Dave Carpentier
    Dave Carpentier Member Posts: 169
    Thanks Larry. I'll have to check how potassium handles the iron duty.
    Its definitely more expensive (3.5x).
    I always thought it was for people who wanted no sodium in their drinking/cooking water, but I didnt consider the net benefit to septic on the rinse/backwash side of things.
    30+ yrs in telecom outside plant.
    Currently in building maintenance.