FAQs for Home Water Filtration Systems:
Below you will find answers to common questions we hear on a regular basis about water softeners and water filtration systems. Keep in mind we custom make everything we sell with only the finest American Made components. It is made for exactly the kind of water you have.
The most common three questions we hear are as follows:
I have a private well that has some problems. How do I fix it?
ANSWER: In order to help you properly, please read items 7, 16 and 17 on this page. Don't worry, most problem wells are easy and inexpensive to fix.
I am on a city water system and have really hard water. How do I fix it?
ANSWER: You can find information on how to size a water softener and how much they cost on this page: Water Softener prices and sizing
I just want to purify my drinking water ONLY. What do I do?
ANSWER: If all you want to do is have pure drinking water in your kitchen to remove bad tastes, chemicals and smells. Just buy the very first filter listed on the following page. It removes just about everything you can imagine: Purified Drinking Water
Here are a number of other common questions we are asked:
FAQS: Q's and A's:
A: This is the most important question on our FAQs page. Call the tech support hotline number @: 412-828-6003. This phone is usually answered 24 hours per day, seven days per week. If you are a current customer with a support issue, just tell them you need customer assistance and they can generally get you in touch with an advisor at any time.
CARBON for Well Water FAQs
A: This is a very important FAQs question. The answer is No. Our Terminox™ iron, sulfur and manganese filter also removes chlorine without the replacement needs of carbon. We only use carbon in extreme cases, generally where you do not have enough flow rate to use the superior Terminox™ filter. But, if you don't use a carbon tank to remove chlorine, you must be sure to monitor (or test) for chlorine, especially at first, to determine how much is coming through into your home. 0.5 to 1.0 PPM (lowest acceptable on a swimming pool tester) or slightly higher is fine. However levels in excess of 2.5-3.0 PPM tell you that a reduction in chlorine is necessary. It's very common to find 1.0-3.0 PPM of chlorine in city water municipal water supplies. If you are using O.T.O. (most common swimming pool test chemical) orange readings are TOO HIGH. The yellow cap (or lid) on the bottle of O.T.O. is a good rule of thumb. Also, you can remove excessive levels of chlorine in your drinking water with a carbon filter at the kitchen sink or a 5 stage reverse osmosis system. Feel free to call one of our techs to help you evaluate your individual situation. The call is free and they are not allowed to ask you to buy anything, ever. Remember for Terminox sizing you need to answer 7,16 and 17 on this water filter FAQs page.
CHLORINE and SULFUR FAQs
Subject: Sulfur smell
I tested our well water and found it has almost no iron, is soft, has ph of 8.5. Would your system that feeds chlorine into the system as the water is delivered suffice to eliminate the strong sulfur smell? Also,would an under sink filter work to eliminate the chlorine taste?
A: Dear Norman,
Yes, and yes, respectively. That was probably the most intelligent e-mail I have had in days in regard to our FAQs. The chlorine is neutralized by the gas so there is no "measurable" chlorine at the kitchen sink. The gas is neutralized by the chlorine so you don't smell that. The bacteria, which causes the gas by eating the sulfates, is killed so no more gas is created. The sulfates can be removed with a Reverse Osmosis for drinking. If your water is soft because of a water softener, a Reverse Osmosis unit is usually recommended for drinking water anyway. The Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water System should also remove residual chlorine, if any, from the water. Of course, a simple carbon drinking water filter would remove residual chlorine as well.
A: You can install the equipment yourself or you can hire someone if you do not feel comfortable doing so. We can even suggest a licensed plumber in your area. It really depends on the equipment and how handy you are. It's so easy to install and inexpensive, that most people do it themselves (our friendly staff is here to answer any questions you may have along the way), or you can have a licensed plumber do it and still save a bundle over local water treatment companies. All equipment comes with an Easy Install instructions website for all your install FAQs. Most local water treatment dealers do not use licensed plumbers! They hire people off the street. We recommend you NEVER let any unlicensed company work on your water equipment. Make the company prove that they are licensed by providing proper documentation while they are on site (at your home). We have seen many units installed that did not adhere to the local plumbing codes, which can create serious health concerns! We consider water a "FOOD PRODUCT". The only thing we want in your water is "water". If necessary, let our representatives help you find someone in your area to help with installation. Just give us a call:
Verbal FAQs answered on our Toll Free Hotline:
IN HOME SALES COMPANY FAQS
They said I need to spend over $5000 for water equipment to clean up my city water.
Does your equipment do the same thing?
They say if I don't buy now I won't get as good a deal later, and I will lose money.
A: (also see: Compare Brands FAQs) Yes, our equipment can provide the same quality of water, if not BETTER. Absolutely. We do it at a fraction of the cost! Our FULL HOUSE WATER FILTRATION SYSTEMS sell for hundreds not thousands! All water treatment equipment is similar. Only the High Pressure Sales Pitches vary. When they say you must "buy tonight or lose a great deal", warning sirens should go off in your mind. It is a common scam to pressure you. Keep in mind that FEDERAL Law says you have three days to change your mind on products sold to you while someone visited your home, even if they have already installed it. Just tell them to "take it out, and give you a refund". It is the law and they are REQUIRED to disclose this to you. If they don't you can file a complaint with your local State Attorney General (it is free). And remember "NEVER BUY ON THE FIRST NIGHT FOR ANY REASON"! What would your mother tell you? Think about it, sleep on it, and "compare". And NEVER let anyone PRESSURE you out of your hard earned cash. Some companies entice you with soap products designed to save you thousands in order to get you to buy on the first visit. Don't worry, usually we can get you those same soap products really cheap too; just ask one of our techs how. Usually from the same people they (the other companies) get it from, only cheaper. In most cases you can get those same soaps, from the same companies they use, for under $100 (even though those slick willy companies tell you they are worth THOUSANDS of dollars).
WARNING: When it comes to water treatment equipment you should NEVER do business with ANY company who does not have the same certifications as we do. It is just plain crazy. There are so many "Fly by night" companies out there that it should be the very FIRST rule in your decision making process. It's your first, and sometimes ONLY, line of defense. Just look at our home page to see our many appropriate certifications. You will find them all in the top third of the page.
A: To clean it again after it runs through your pipes. Especially if your home was built BEFORE 1987. Lead solder was not outlawed until 1987.
Also, sink filters take out substances that a water softener can't. Reverse osmosis sink filters remove the sodium that water softeners leave behind. If you buy a water softener with no carbon inside (on city water), a good carbon sink filter will remove chlorine, bad tastes and odors from the water.
FLOW RATE FAQs
This is the single most important factor on our FAQs page in determining what you need to do to get the right filter for a private well.
A: To determine your flow rate please follow these two simple steps.
- Open the NEAREST faucet or tap AFTER the pressure tank (But NOT the one ON the pressure tank), and let the water run until the well pump turns on. Immediately turn off the tap and count how many seconds the well pump runs from the time it came on until it shuts off, then write down the number of seconds the pump ran.
- Now get a container you can measure water in, such as an empty gallon milk container. Open the tap or faucet and fill the container. Then close the tap and dump the water down the drain. Fill the container again, and then pour it out again. Continue doing this and counting each gallon until the pump starts again. Once the pump starts shut off the tap and stop drawing water. Write down the number of gallons you counted until the pump started. If there are any partial gallons left over count those as well; such as a total of 1.5 or 4.25 for example. You now have the information to calculate the well pump flow rate. Just give one of our techs a call and tell him how many seconds you calculated on step 1, and then tell him how many gallons you were able to draw after that for step two. That is it. He will then be able to tell you exactly what the flow rate is and which size filter you need. This information is essential to properly size any backwashing filter (such as iron filters and water softeners) or other flow rate dependent items such as Ultra Violet (UV) systems. You should always know your flow rate on ANY private well.
For example: The well pump ran for 30 seconds and then you were able to draw 5.5 gallons before the pumps started again. That means you have 11 GPM flow rate.
Things to remember when doing a flow rate check:
*DO NOT use a water hose when checking flow rates! If necessary have someone listen for the pump to turn on while you draw water.
*If you can't hear the pump turn on and off follow these instructions. If you have a pressure tank, some where near it there will be a small box with some wires join into it. This is the pressure switch for your pressure tank. When the well pump comes on it will make a distinctive "Click". When the well pump goes off it will make another distinctive click. In this case you may need two people. One to draw water and the other to listen for the clicks.
*Variable Speed Well Pumps and Constant Pressure Well Pumps:
Most residential wells have conventional pumps and pressure tanks. Every now and then we will talk to someone who has a different type. These people usually know who they are because of the special nature of these pumps. If you have a variable speed pump or a constant pressure pump, please call in and ask for a level #4 tech to help you.
DIFFERENT SOFTENER MODELS FAQs
A: The Deluxe models have white tank "insulating jackets" to help prevent "tank sweating". If you have a finished basement, or are putting the unit in an area where occasional residual water sweating off of the tank would be a concern, you'll want one of thes The Premium models have additional functions or features. For example: The Premium Dual Purpose unit softens as well as conditions the water by removing chlorine and other contaminants. It has a separate tank built into it for Activated Carbon, so that you can backwash both at the same time and save water. You never want to "mix" carbon and softener resin in the same tank like some companies do (there is no way to get the carbon back out to replace it). You can also put other filtration media in the extra tank instead of activated carbon for other needs. And "thank you" Walter Schaefer in California for asking us to include this information here, and for your excellent idea that California residents should consider putting their outdoor water softener and filter tanks in the ground to guard against earthquake damage. Great Idea!
A: UV lights are normally used to kill harmful bacteria, such as E. coli and coliform bacteria. You cannot use ANY type of UV light when you have measurable amounts of iron, manganese, hard water or a number of the other situations. You also cannot use a UV light properly when placed after any back washing filter or water softener. Be very wary of anyone who would tell you that you can. For more information, please go to this page:
Note: If you are considering a UV light for disinfection, you should be sure to read the entire page at the link above, especially the information listed at the bottom of the page which informs you of what is correct and what is not. Remember that it can be dangerous to misapply a UV light on water supplies where harmful bacteria may be present. This is something that you simply must do correctly.
REVERSE OSMOSIS FAQs
I am especially interested in how to tap into the water supply.
Is it like a refrigerator tap etc?
A: REVERSE OSMOSIS (R.O.) INSTALLATION TIPS:
It is fairly simple. You have a small attachment that you place on the cold water pipe under the sink, you then "twist" a little butterfly type nut (called a saddle valve) all the way down to pierce the pipe and then unscrew it back out to receive water to the R.O. You also need a small hole in the sink for the additional faucet (the size of the sprayer hole or a bit less, you can even use the sprayer hole if you don't normally use the sprayer). Your local hardware store sells a "drill bit" for your household power drill for about $12-$15 that will easily drill the hole for you.
Then there is a little thing called a drain saddle that you attach to the drain under the sink to carry the waste water away... that's about it. Average install time is approx. 30 minutes, 20 if you know what you are doing, 45-60 minutes if you're a bit on the slow side.
We also want you to realize that an installation helper (or tech), will be right there on the phone with you to help you if you need it. We will even pay for the call...
If you want to run the water to the fridge (which is usually the next question), just put a "T" in the product water line (the one that brings clean water up to the faucet) and run it to the back of the fridge. Be sure NOT to use a copper line unless absolutely necessary so the you don't get a copper taste after the water has sat in the water line all night... And a "3/8" water line seems to be best. "1/4" water lines sometimes are too small for certain icemakers and water dispensers.
A: Yes, we sometimes send you more media than you need no matter what type of tank it is. Just be careful that you don't over fill the tank (if you are doing it yourself). Most units require 12-15 inches of "free space" or "air space" in the top of the tank when you assemble it. We match the media to the tank, not the tank to how much media is there. Besides you can keep any extra for the future. It may save you a little money down the road. We think our customers enjoy getting a little extra as opposed to not enough.
A: If you are an experienced water treatment equipment installer and understand that customer satisfaction is our number one goal, we would be delighted to speak with you and possibly put you on our list of installers. Simply click on the Plumber Handyman link on the home page and provide us with your name, address, phone and e-mail address. A representative will contact you promptly. Or you may call us at the toll free number below.
HOT WATER HEATER FAQs
A: Removing the anode rod from your hot water heater is virtually never a good idea, they are in there for a reason and that is to protect your hot water heater. Removing it will not only void the warranty of your hot water heater but will almost certainly shorten the life of the tank by many years. Unfortunately many in home service technicians have found this to be a quick fix for a customer who is still getting odor. This is only a band aide approach and the odor returns in a short time. If the water has an odor on the hot water side only then you have a manganese issue and that water needs to be treated and the manganese removed, not the anode rod.
WATER SOFTENER FAQs
A: A water softener works by replacing the hardness in your water with either sodium or potassium. There are two types of softeners: Demand and Timer models. A demand model recycles depending on how much water you use. A timer model recycles at a specified time. For more water softener information feel free to give us a call.
SALT FREE FAQs
A: All of our water softeners can be used as either a salt using water softener or a potassium water softener. Some people say that potassium is a salt free system even though potassium is actually a salt as well. It is really up to you choose the right water softener for your family. If you are going to install a water softener we recommend you start at our water softener home page: Water Softeners-Conditioners.
FREE WATER TEST FAQs
A: YES! There are several ways to get your water properly tested for basic water problems for FREE! We also have paid testing for the complicated stuff.
This is a popular FAQs question. First you need to know which type of water you have. Whether you have a Private Well, just for your personal home, which we call "Well Water'; or if you are on some sort of public or municipal water supply which we call "City Water". Both methods are explained below, as well as when testing is actually needed and how to get testing done for free:
Private Well Water Test FAQs Response:
The best thing to do is get your water "independently" tested. Many swimming supply stores do testing for free and are pretty accurate. Just ask them to test it just like they would if you were considering buying a swimming pool or hot tub. DO NOT let the sample sit all day or overnight before testing. pH is a very important part of testing and pH can actually change if it sits too long. Draw the sample and then get it tested as quickly as possible. If all else fails you can send us a sample and we will test it for FREE. Just give one of our techs a call and they will tell you how to send us a sample.
A great way to get testing is to just look under "laboratories" in the Yellow Pages. Be sure to call several to compare prices as labs vary greatly in their pricing. You can usually find one that will check your iron, pH, hardness and TDS quite inexpensively. Sometimes for just a few dollars more they will give you a very wide range of tests and we understand what it all means as a rule. If all you want to do is treat for iron, then hardness and TDS are not essential. Tell us what is in the water and we will get it right every time. Remember, if you use a lab, pH can change if you let the sample sit for very long. If using a lab, ask them to test the pH right away, even if it takes them a while to test the other things.
MORE WATER TESTING FAQs
CAUTION: Never let someone that sells water equipment test your water, especially the ones that come into your home. Always try to get it tested by someone that does not sell water equipment. You can see our iron and sulfur filters (they are chemical free) here: https://waterfiltersofamerica.com/iron_filters.htm. Also keep in mind that if you can not find a local lab to help, we can test it free of charge for you; If you are on a private well we will also need to know your flow rate. Look at #7 above on this FAQS page for easy instructions on determining your flow rate. And you should read Item #17 below on this FAQS page as well, which addresses iron bacteria and organic issues.
Public City Water Supplies FAQs Response:
Normally on city water supplies the common things to test for are hardness and chlorine. Most city water supplies have no pH issues even though you see them on occasion. For example, testing in Kansas City, Missouri can show as high as 10 on the pH scale which is far beyond what the EPA recommends for drinking water. Then, on the other hand, we have seen acidic water in places like Bethel Park, PA. Acidic water is usually not a good idea, but normally hardness and chlorine are the main things to test for. Hardness is usually the easiest thing to figure out. Just call the phone number on your water bill and ask them what is the "Hardest" the water gets each year. They will tell you. Having in home sales companies coming in to "Test" your water is usually just a sales ploy. They already know what your hardness level is. They could tell you right over the phone if they wanted to. But they won"t. They want to get INSIDE your home for the big sale.
As far as chlorine goes there are several things to know. First ask the water provider (The city water department) if they use chlorine, or Chloramines", if they say chlorine then ask them if they add "Ammonia" to the water. Now, they will not be able to tell you accurately what the chlorine levels are in your home, you can use a swimming pool tester for this or you can take a fresh sample immediately down to the pool supply store for testing. You must take it right down as it will start dissipating over time. Chloramines are MUCH stronger than chlorine. For example, if you are using reverse osmosis for your drinking water you would want a 4 stage for chlorine and a 5 stage for chloramines. When in doubt just use the five stage.
One good way to determine if you need to test for chlorine or chloramines is to do a simple drinking glass test. Run unfiltered and un-softened water at the kitchen sink for 5 minutes with the water faucet fully open. Then take a "Glass" drinking glass or container and fill it half full. Smell the water IMMEDIATELY. Stick your nose right down into the glass. If you can smell a chlorine or bleach type smell (Chemical smell), then you obviously have a lot of chemical in the water. If you can"t smell anything at all, then testing for chlorine is probably not necessary. But it never hurts to test.
If you do test the water (Remember to let it run for five minutes before drawing the sample), remember these guidelines:
O to 0.5 ppm= Treatment is optional
.5 to 1.0 ppm= Treatment is recommended
1.0 to 1.5 ppm Treatment STRONGLY recommended
1.5 ppm or higher=Treatment is essential
1.5 ppm or higher=Treat the whole house, not just the drinking water.
Keep in mind that 1.5 is swimming pool levels of chlorine. You would never take a glass and dip it into a pool and then drink it would you? Would you take a bath in a swimming pool? Probably not! If your water softener is at a swimming pool level of chlorine or chloramines it will damage the softener components over time.
Please don't hesitate to give us a quick call for a discussion of your situation. Keep in mind our technicians are not allowed to ask you to buy anything or pressure you in ANY way. They just answer your questions and give you great advice. We are the online leader for water treatment worldwide. We set the standard for all others to follow. 800-684-0979 Toll Free. Phones answered 24 Hours a day.
IRON BACTERIA and ORGANICS FAQs
A: Another essential set of FAQs for a private well. Once you have tested your well water and checked your flow rate on a private well you should also do the following:
When treating problem well water it is always good to check for organic issues (Things living or growing in the water). And if you have ANY iron in the water at all it is good to do a visual inspection for iron bacteria. Organics and iron bacteria can make many well water filters; including backwashing filters, fail over time. It's really easy to do these visual inspections. Each should just take a minute or so of your time.
Visual Organics Check takes just a few moments. Find instructions here: https://waterfiltersofamerica.com/visual_organics_check.htm
Visual Iron Bacteria Check: This is something you can do in about 30 seconds. You can find instructions here: https://waterfiltersofamerica.com/iron_bacteria_check.htm
THEN CALL US FOR A RECOMMENDATION. In most cases we can solve your problem inexpensively and without air injectors or chemicals. Everything we use is top of the line national name brand equipment. And remember you should NEVER use a water softener as an iron filter.
CHEMICAL FEED PUMP FAQs
A: Do you know where your pressure tank is? It is usually the first thing that the water goes through after the well pump. We normally put an injector in the line right before the pressure tank. Then we hook up the electric line to the pressure switch that is usually on that tank or near it so that it turns our pump on when your well pump comes on. If you don't have a pressure tank, or if you want the pump installed at a different place than your pressure tank (and pressure switch) you need to add a flow switch ($190) to the application to sense when the water is moving through the pipe and then it tells your chem pump when to turn on.
If you have a 220v well pump you need a 220v chem feed pump. If you have a 110v well pump you need a 110v chem feed pump.
If you use a flow switch then you need the 110v pump.
I hope this information helps you. Please feel free to contact us by phone at any time if you have any other questions not answered on this FAQs page. The call is free.
IRON WATER FILTERS FAQs
A: Our Pyrolox filters are now featured on this page: https://waterfiltersofamerica.com/pyrolox_filter.htm
You can find our Superior Terminox™ I.S.M. Filters here: https://waterfiltersofamerica.com/iron_filters.htm
Pyrolox used to be our main technology for iron, sulfur and manganese treatment until we developed something even better, our "Terminox™". The fact is we were the FIRST company to offer Pyrolox on the internet as its main iron filter technology and worldwide. That is why we added it to our FAQS. We used to be the ONLY true source with correctly applied technology. We carefully developed it with unique flow rates we learned from years of in field experience. Then other companies started trying to copy what we did in order to leech off of our business ideas. The problem is they never seemed to get the flow rate, flow controls and content right so the bad Pyrolox applications they had were making our proven technology seem the same, which it wasn"t. Many didn't even put the proper amount of mineral in to start with which meant those poor customers that bought those units would have to replace Pyrolox in a very short amount of time instead of the average of 15 years as ours would do... One company out of Ohio is notorious for getting their Pyrolox filters wrong. By not putting the entire mineral allowable in them they could afford to sell them cheaper, even though it was ripping off the customer. It is one of those companies that have to offer free shipping and ridiculous sounding guarantees to be competitive instead of just selling good equipment that is properly made and sized, and putting a superior control valve on instead of marginal piston driven valves... As we all know nothing in this world is truly free.
While those copycat companies struggled to catch up we were developing cutting edge NEW technologies, as we always have. Now we are the ONLY Company with "Terminox™" and we have exclusive access to this highly effective technology, as we have constantly upgraded and originated this unique, superior technology. It is far more effective than Pyrolox units sold by those copycat companies in that it removes far more contaminants under a variety of different conditions and applications. It rarely needs more mineral added down the road. So if you want Pyrolox, we are the originators and still offer it, and we are better at sizing Pyrolox properly than anyone else... If you want the very best filter available, you might want to consider the highly effective chemical free, salt free and maintenance free "Terminox™ ISM" filter. It is even more effective than the Pyrolox most others are selling. It also has several minerals that normal Pyrolox units don't have. It has a buffer agent to treat the Pyrolox mineral to keep in from being damaged in start up due to low pH concerns, particularly for those folks who forget to raise the pH before installing the unit (if their pH is low). We also have new generation mineral in our Terminox™ that withstands higher operating temperatures than other minerals and helps keep the mineral bed from becoming iron bound. Our new Terminox™ can work at far lower flow rates than the original Pyrolox as well. It also can work at higher service rates. And it is far more resistant to low pH problem water. Water Filters of America™ and Terminox™, always on the cutting edge! Remember to read items 7,16 and 17 on this FAQs page to help us determine the right Terminox for you.
MIRACLES and MAGNETS FAQs
A: Absolutely not! We have never found a magnet or alloy or electronic coil of any kind that can pass any hardness test at all! Buyers beware of companies offering such gadgets and miracles. If they worked you could find them here as well. For more information about magnets and other gimmicks click HERE for FAQs.
A: We manufacture most of our equipment from scratch and we use only the VERY BEST premium American Made national name brand components on all equipment that we sell. The same people that make equipment for most other PREMIUM brand companies make them for us as well. The number one and number two makers in the world are Fleck and Autotrol; we carry both and several other top brands as well.
DRINKING SOFT WATER FAQs
A: This is a great question for our FAQs page. You should virtually NEVER drink the water from a water softener! If the water is high in hardness then once it goes through the water softener it will be high in sodium. If it is not high in hardness then you did not need a water softener to begin with. don't drink water that comes out of a water softener. Even if it should be below the MCL for safe drinking water most people do not want unnecessary amounts of sodium in their drinking water. You don't have to take our word for it either. Just take a sample of any water from a water softener that has high hardness going to it and take it to a lab to test for sodium and salt. The results will speak for themselves. To read more click here: Drinking Soft Water FAQs. If you have a salesman in your home telling you it is ok to drink the water from a water softener and he is not telling you to either drink bottled water or use reverse osmosis as a drinking filter; it may be time to ask him to leave. Reverse Osmosis Drinking Systems FAQs.
FAQS for OUTSIDE INSTALLS
A: For more information on outdoor installations, visit this page:Outdoor Systems FAQs.
We hope that this information and FAQs on home water filtration systems help you.
Also See: Compare Brands FAQs for more advice, information and comparisons. Please note: Some assembly is required on most purchases. Any other questions you want us to add to our Water Filter FAQs? Just send us an email with FAQs in the subject line. We add FAQS to this page on a regular basis.
Information on well water chlorination FAQs:
The difference between feeding chlorine directly into the well as opposed to using a storage tank outside the well for chlorine injection. Click on the link below for info, advice and prices on different systems. Also covers a cheap method of "SULFUR ONLY" removal:
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Home Water Filtration Systems
What is considered hard water? How many grains per gallon or whatever?
FAQs Article: Salmonella in Water (New!)