How to size your home well water treatment system for perfect well water filtration solutions
The homeowner's do it yourself guide to proper well water analysis.
And it is simple and easy to do! It just takes 5 to 10 minutes around the house and a little bit of water quality information. Whether you are trying to determine the correct size of a water softener, an iron filter system, e-coli or coliform bacterium control; or if you are just trying to determine if you actually need any water filtration equipment at all. You ALWAYS start at the water problem and the flow rate and move FORWARD to the water equipment. Instead of doing what most high pressure in home sales companies do and start at some arbitrary piece of equipment, and then move BACKWARDS to the water problem. It also should make sense to you that there is no true way to determine what SIZE of a filter you need if they don't know what the maximum amount of water is that will ever travel down that water line. If you EVER have an in home salesperson give you a quote that did not perform a simple flow rate check AND give WRITTEN results to keep from any testing he has done, you should be very slow to do business with that person. The same thing goes for online companies. If they don't ask you for a flow rate they likely are not skilled at analyzing wells. No one should ever give you a quote without first determining what your flow rate is. Doing business with that company would be as silly as doing business with ANY online company that is not a member of the ONLINE Better Business Bureau. You just DON'T do that! So remember: When it comes to private well water problems one size DOES NOT FIT ALL! Every well is unique and should be treated as an individual application. We have seen wells that are 20 feet apart have completely different issues. Just because a neighbor treated his well in a certain fashion does not mean you should copy what he has done. That is a real mistake in judgment and often results in total failure. BEWARE the commissioned salesperson who says all of the water is the same in this area and that he knows the solution. That is a very lazy and inappropriate approach to water treatment equipment and just about any water filtration solution.
Three Simple Steps
There are three things ANY person with private water well must do to properly size water treatment equipment for their private well. Those instructions follow this explanation. Sometimes there are variations if a person is on a community well. If you are on a community well just call and ask a tech for advice. A community well is one where a number of people share an individual well in some fashion. Because of all of the different potential variations that we see on community well water systems we strongly recommend you ask one of our techs for assistance when analyzing those. On normal residential private wells doing anything short of these three recommended things is extremely marginal judgment when considering any home water treatment system.
1. The first thing is that you need to be sure of your "Flow Rate". Homeowners need to know what the absolute most amount of water is that can go down that water line so we know what size equipment is correct. It is impossible for ANY company to properly size any unit without knowing this. If it is a backwashing filter such as an iron filter or a sulfur filter the flow rate tells you what size due to backwashing considerations. If it is a water softener or some other metered style device that would backwash differently than an iron or sulfur filter, then the wrong size unit may restrict the water pressure to the house. So beware if the local in home sales company person tells you you need a water softener, or a greensand iron filter or a carbon tank or ANYTHING else without first determining your flow rate as described here on our website. And even if they actually do a flow rate check MOST in home salespeople do it wrong. This includes potentially the local Culligan®, RainSoft®, Kinetico® or other in home sales dealer. You don't just run water into a bucket and see how long it takes to fill up. That is a truly foolish approach in most cases.
2. The second thing is water testing, which is easy and usually FREE! You need to know what is in the water or what is wrong with the well water before you can fix it. For example, any good backwashing filter for iron, sulfur, manganese etc. requires a pH of 7.5 or higher. The pH is easy and inexpensive to correct if it is too low, but you would need to know what it actually is to know if you need to correct it. The pH is determined by an independent water test, which we can show you how to get for free. If you have iron, you need to know how much. We can give you several examples of how to get water testing done for free. If you have sulfur and it seems like a lot, you should test for that as well, but that is not a free test. NOTE: you should never have someone who sells water equipment come INSIDE your home to test your water. These are not water experts normally; they are COMMISSIONED sales people. They can actually manipulate the testing. They usually make zero money if they don't walk out of your home with a sale! That sale is how they keep from raising hungry kids so most are fairly aggressive individuals when it comes time for them to ask you for an order. Remember that if it is a good deal tonight it will be a good deal tomorrow. Isn't that what your mother or father would tell you? If they say you get a special price or free soap products or an air filter if you do business tonight, that is your first clue you should NOT do business tonight!
3. And third we need to know if you have any iron bacteria or organic issues. Note: We are not talking about harmful bacteria such as e-coli or coliform. We are talking about things that might grow in your filter. Most people do not have iron bacteria or organic type issues. Checking for iron bacteria and organics is normally quite easy to determine by looking in the back of the storage tank in a bathroom toilet. Some people think that because they had the county test their water for bacteria and that the county says the water is safe, that they have NO Bacteria or organic problems. This is not necessarily true. The local health department or county government usually only require water tests for e-coli or coliform bacterium. These are the two most common bacteria that are considered unsafe. There can still be iron bacteria, organics, sulfur bacterium and a number of other things that can impair your water treatment equipment's ability to function properly though they may not be harmful to ones health. Don't worry if you do have it. It is easy and inexpensive to correct normally.
If you would like to look at our FAQs (frequently asked questions) please click here:
Once you have that information, please contact us again and we can tell you EXACTLY what you need and EXACTLY what it will cost. Most people are pleasantly surprised how low priced our solutions are. Any company that doesn't insist on this information probably hasn't a clue on how to properly treat water, or they are selling marginal products. You should be very skeptical of such companies.
Please don't hesitate to give us a quick call at 800-684-0979 for a quick expert evaluation of your issue. 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 appreciate your patience.