In last month’s blog, we discussed how to properly size a commercial water treatment system. This month, we’re taking a look at a specific type of treatment: water softeners. Throughout the Internet, there is a lot of confusion about how to choose the right-sized commercial water softening system for your business. In this month’s blog, we’ll clear up this confusion by sharing important sizing guidelines.
Commercial Water Quality and Water Usage
Properly sizing a water softener is all about matching your specific water quality and water use to a sufficiently-sized system that will minimize salt use and maximize soft water capacity. There are two primary factors that go into sizing a softener:
- The system must be able to accommodate the flow rate of the water.
- It must be able to accommodate the volume of water treated each day.
Flow Rate and Water Hardness
It is very important to know your water hardness when purchasing a commercial water softener. When you test your water, this information will be reported in grains per gallon (GPG), the industry standard for measuring softeners. It might also be measured in parts per million (ppm). In general, the greater the level of hardness, the larger the softener needs to be.
Media, the material in the tank that actually softens your water, is able to treat between two and 10 gallons per minute (gpm), per cubic foot of media (as determined by the manufacturer). If your water’s mineral content is fairly low, you can successfully treat 10 gpm, per cubic foot. If your water’s mineral content is fairly high, you may only be able to treat 2 gpm, per cubic foot. For example, let’s say our target is to treat 6 gpm per cubic foot. If you need to treat 30 gpm, you’ll need a 5 cubic foot softener.
Once you’ve considered your flow rate, it’s time to think about the volume of water your system will treat each day. Treating 30 gpm could be as much as 43,200 gallons of water per day. Of course the softener size will be much different if the softener treats 30 gpm for three hours per day (5400 gallons) or if it treats for 15 hours (27,000 gallons) or 24 hours (43,200 gallons). The capacity of the softener is also directly affected by the water quality. Treating 100 ppm (parts per million) of hardness requires much less capacity than treating 300 ppm.
Commercial Water Softening System Efficiency
A properly-sized commercial water softener system never runs out of soft water and uses the least amount of salt as possible. Why should you care about your system’s salt use? Because salt costs money, requires time and effort to replace, and ultimately, discharges into the environment. Over the lifespan of your water softener, this can really add up!
Commercial Water Softening System Installation and Repair in NH
When it comes to choosing a commercial water softening system, one size does not fit all. It doesn’t do you any good to spend less money and end up with a system that does not operate reliably and consistently, nor does it benefit you to buy a system that’s larger than you need. Your commercial water softener system must balance water volume, water problems, and salt use to provide the flow, pressure, and water quality you need–and work within your capital and operating budgets. This is where the experience and expertise of Secondwind Water Systems comes in. Give us a call at (800) 287-5767 or visit us online to learn more about the Secondwind Difference.