In this article we will discuss how to compare GE, Fleck, Water Boss, Whirlpool, Kenmore, Aquasana, Kinetico, and WaterSmart water softeners. We will also review a selection of these companies products. Contact us at Watersmart for advice on water softeners for your home. Most water softeners can be installed in a few hours.
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A Helpful Comparison Chart
The following chart is a comparison of the leading water softeners on the market:
How to Choose
1. Search Online For Product Comparisons
Research the competitors online. By doing this you will develop an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of each product. This will allow you to better match up your requirements with the product that meets your specific needs, and make help you make a wise decision.
2. Research Customer Reviews
Other customers have been down this road before. They have chosen a product and are happy to share their experiences with the reading public. By reading customer reviews you can narrow down the selection by deleting those with the consistently poorest reviews. Use sites like amazon.ca and homedepot.ca to find a wide selection of reviews.
3. Research Customer Complaints
Google the products you are interested in with the phrase "customer complaints." This will allow you to see the most common complaints about the products. Ignore isolated complaints and look for recurring themes. This will give you a clearer picture of how the product is working in the real world. The products with the fewest complaints are probably the better ones.
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4. Research Common Problems
Are there specific problems that seem to repeatedly crop up with the models you are researching? Check to see if those problems are major or minor; that is, whether they significantly affect the operation of the device. Also determine what, if anything, the company is doing or has done to address the problem. If no one from the manufacturer is addressing the problem then you may be looking at a product with a poor customer service record.
5. Create A Short List
Narrow down your options by creating a short list. Include those brands that seem to best fit your needs and set aside those that seem to be a poor fit.
6. Contact Distributors Of The Options On Your Short List
Contact a sales representative at a distributor of a product on your list. Ask pertinent questions about the product you are interested in. How much does it cost? What are its strengths and weaknesses? How does it compare with the competitors on your list? Are there any hidden service fees? Do they offer a guarantee over and above the one that comes with the unit? By asking these types of questions, you will be able to narrow your choice further.
7. Ask To See A Demonstration Of Your Preferred Unit In Action
Can the supplier provide you with a demonstration of your preferred choice in action? This is an important step as it may reveal things that you were unaware of. For example, the product may be a lot louder than you anticipated. The product may operate more slowly than is advertised, and so on. If all goes well, it is almost time to make a final decision.
8. Ask Supplier To Provide You With 3 References
Ask the supplier to provide you with the names of 3 families or businesses that are using the product. If they are prepared to discuss the product and are happy with their purchase then you should be ready to make your final decision.
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WaterSmart Systems & Plumbing
The WaterSmart WS-30-S is a well-engineered product that can remove from 32,000 to 150,000 gpg (grains per gallon.) The product is also capable of removing chlorine along with its accompanying bad odors and taste.
It regenerates on demand based on water usage and uses only 37 gallons of water per regeneration. Like most water softeners, the system requires an electrical connection and a drain for waste water.
WaterSmart carries its own range of water softeners and reverse osmosis filters. You can find the full range here.
GE 30,400 Water Softeners
The GE 30,400 Grain Water Softener uses a salt-based system that can remove minerals from your home water supply.
The softener removes up to removes up to 95 gpg and 7 parts per million of clear water iron from your water supply. It typically uses 35.5 gallons of water during each cycle. The system requires an electrical connection and a drain for waste water.
The Fleck 5600sxt digital metered softener is a well-designed system that uses salt to soften the hard water in your water source.
It has some solid pros but also a few cons. Pros include a great warranty, metered regeneration, large capacity of 48,000 grain, and its effectiveness under operation. Cons include that it is perhaps too large for smaller homes, being better suited to medium to large size homes, and the running costs of salt pellets.
Water Boss 700
The Water Boss 700 is a smaller, compact unit designed for properties with limited space and lower requirements.
The unit provides you provides you with soft water by removing calcium and magnesium from your water supply.
Clear-water iron is also removed and it is equipped with a self-cleaning sediment filter.
While not as capacious as the Fleck 5600SXT it still removes 22,100 grains during a regeneration cycle. It requires an electrical supply and a waste water outlet.
Aquasana AQ-5300.55 3-Stage
The Aquasana AQ-5300.55 3-Stage is an under the counter water filtration system designed to remove impurities from your water supply. Clogging is reduced by a pre-filter and the unit is particularly suitable for areas that suffer from high sediment and salt levels. The product is a reverse osmosis filtering system and not a water softener, therefore, it does not improve the water softness. A budget-priced model, it is nevertheless a popular product.
Kinetico Signature Series Water Softeners
This non-electric series of water softeners uses a dual tank system and water flow to move water through the system.
Although quite expensive to purchase and install, the Kinetico products have been around for many years but are only available through their own network of in-home sales representatives and qualified distributors.