Plumbing The ProSoftᵀᴹ 2 & Citymasterᵀᴹ Water Softeners
This article explains how to plumb your newly purchased Aquatell ProSoftᵀᴹ 2 Series or Citymaster water softener to your existing plumbing. Please note that any generalities in these instructions are likely on purpose as it's difficult to provide plumbing instructions that will meet plumbing code in every jurisdiction to which we ship. Please note that it is up to every installer, whether professional or DIY, to ensure that they are meeting local plumbing and safety codes for their respective jurisdiction.
Here is a graphical overview of the installation of a ProSoftᵀᴹ 2 Series or Citymasterᵀᴹ water softener:
Main Water Line & Pressure: Aquatell water softeners require a main water supply line that is no smaller than 1/2" I.D. though a 3/4" ID supply is better. The minimum operating pressure for our systems is 30 psi.
Assembly & Plumbing Of The Sediment Filter
The ProSoftᵀᴹ 2, ProSoftᵀᴹ 2AQX, and Citymasterᵀᴹ systems come with a sediment pre-filter the must be used with the system for its proper functioning and longevity. The ProSoftᵀᴹ 2GW does not come with a pre-filter as it is not necessary for this model. The filtration system is comprised of a filter housing with cap, filter cartridge, mounting bracket, and bracket mounting screws:
To assemble the sediment filter complete the following steps:
- remove the plastic wrap and label from the sediment filter cartridge
- unscrew the cap from the filter housing (make sure there are no remaining small parts in the housing)
- put the filter cartridge in the housing
- ensure the housing o-ring is positioned in the groove on the lip of the filter housing (you may need to look for the o-ring in the filter cap)
- spin on the cap
- Align the white metal bracket with the bosses in the cap and use the supplied screws to attach the bracket to the cap like this:
You will see that each port on the filter housing is labelled as IN or OUT. Each of these ports is 3/4" female thread. Thread a 3/4" male NPT fitting to both ports. Teflon tape is recommended. Mount the housing + bracket to a wall and plumb to each of the ports. Be sure to leave at least 6" of clearance below the bottom of the housing for the easy removal of the filter cartridge in the future. When connecting the plumbing to the filter housing make sure the flow direction is observed. Once the housing has been plumbed in place, use the filter wrench to tighten the housing to the cap
Plumbing The Control Valve
In a previous assembly step the control valve was connected to the bypass valve, and the plumbing yoke, and was then spun onto the media tank. This assembly should look like this:
Direction Arrows On The Bypass: The bypass valve has directional arrows molded into it. These arrows show the direction of untreated water into the system and treated water out of the system.
Bypass Function: The bypass consists of a set of connected valves - one on the inlet and one on the outlet. Each valve can be moved 1/4 turn to move it from open to closed. In the photo above, both valves are closed (the system is in "bypass" mode). When you are plumbing the softener, the system should be in bypass mode.
Plumbing To The Yoke: The plumbing yoke is shown on the left side of the photo above and is the portion of the control valve apparatus that you will be plumbing to. The yoke terminates in 3/4" male NPT threads. NPT threads are tapered threads and can be interfaced with all common 3/4" female plumbing fittings. Teflon tape should be used on these threaded connections.
Supporting The Plumbing: It's very important that the weight of the plumbing that is connected to the softener is supported by securing it to the wall. If the weight of the plumbing is allowed to pull on the yoke/bypass/control valve it can cause excessive flexing and is likely to cause an immediate or eventual leak. Note that some flex in this apparatus is normal even when the plumbing is well supported.
Drain Line Connection & Routing
When these water softeners regenerate there will be a flow of waste water to drain. A drain line needs to be connected to the control valve and this drain line needs to be routed to an appropriate discharge location. The drain line port can be found on the control valve here:
Barbed Drain Line Fitting: The barbed drain line fitting is threaded into the drain fitting with Teflon tape for a water-tight seal. The drain fitting + barbed fitting are o-ring sealed into the control valve and this apparatus is held in place with the Drain Port Retaining Clip. The drain line fitting can rotate 360-degrees so it's easy to orient the barbed fitting in whatever direction makes sense for your application. If you want to inspect or tighten the drain line fitting to the barbed fitting, it's often easiest to remove the retaining clip and pull the fitting out, work on it, and then put it back in. Make sure that when it's re-inserted it is fully seated and that the retaining clip is able to slide all the way in.
Drain Line Materials: The barbed fitting provided makes it especially convenient to use vinyl tubing for the drain line. Use a gear clamp (pictured below) to secure the tubing to the 1/2" diameter barbed fitting. Some installers prefer to plumb a more rigid material as the drain line. This is commonly Pex but sometimes CPVC or copper are used. In this case it's often most convenient to remove the barbed fitting and to plumb directly to the drain line port which is a 1/2" female NPT thread. No matter how the drain line is constructed it's very important to make sure the weight of the drain line is supported.
Drain Line Flow Rate: The ProSoftᵀᴹ 2, ProSoftᵀᴹ 2AQX and Citymasterᵀᴹ systems have a maximum drain line flow rate of 2.1 U.S. gallons per minute. The ProSoftᵀᴹ 2GW has a maximum drain line flow rate of 2.5 U.S. gallons per minute. Standard factory programming for the ProSoftᵀᴹ 2, ProSoftᵀᴹ 2AQX and Citymasterᵀᴹ will cause these softeners to discharge a total of approximately 25 U.S. gallons per regeneration. The ProSoftᵀᴹ 2GW system will discharge approximately 47 U.S. gallons per regeneration.
Drain Line Routing: The drain line can be discharged to a number of different locations in a typical residential application. These include floor drains, laundry tubs, sump pits, and several others. In each case it's important to ensure that the drain line is secured so it won't move when water is flowing through it. In most jurisdictions plumbing code dictates that an "air gap" is maintained between the end of the drain line and the standing water level of the drainage location. For drain line runs that are less than 25 feet, 1/2" ID tubing will work well. For runs that are longer than this, 3/4" ID tubing is recommended. The maximum typical drain line length is 35' however, if the home water pressure is sufficiently high, longer drain line runs are possible. Because the drain line is under household line pressure, the drain line can be routed up above the softener. For this type of drain line routing is recommended that the total vertical distance between the top of the softener and the drain line is kept smaller than 8 feet.
Discharging To A Sump Pit: It is not uncommon to discharge the softener drain line to a sump. In this case it's a good idea to ensure that the sump pump has plastic internal components or else the salt in the softener drain line water will cause excessive corrosion and possible pump failure.
Discharging Outdoors: In some jurisdictions it's common to discharge a water softener outdoors - usually to a dry well or french drain. In these cases it's important to ensure that the entire drain line is kept above freezing temperatures year-round.
Kinked Drain Lines: Depending on the drain line material you use be careful that the drain line does not become kinked thus preventing or minimizing the flow of water through the drain tube.