How to Install a Whole-House Water Softener | Ask This Old House

This Old House plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey visits New Jersey to install a water softener. (See below for a shopping list, tools, and steps.)
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Shopping List for Installing a Whole-House Water Softener:
– Water softener
– Solder
– Copper pipe and valves
– 3/8-inch-diameter plastic tubing
– Compress fittings
– Hose clamps
– Air-gap fitting
– Salt

Tools List for Installing a Whole-House Water Softener:
– Tubing cutter
– Soldering iron

Steps for Installing a Whole-House Water Softener:
1. Turn off the water at the meter.
2. Use a tubing cutter to tap into the existing cold-water pipe.
3. Connect the water softener’s resin tank to the cold-water pipe by soldering on an assembly of copper pipe and three valves.
4. Run a length of 3/8-inch-diameter plastic tubing from the resin tank to the salt tank; connect each end of the tubing with compress fittings.
5. Use a hose clamp to attach the drain line to the drain elbow on the resin tank.
6. Install an air-gap fitting to the drain that leads to the sewer pipe.
7. Attach the water softener’s discharge hose to the air-gap fitting with a hose clamp.
8. Hook the discharge hose from the washing machine onto the air-gap fitting.
9. Fill the salt tank with salt.
10. Turn the water back on.

About Ask This Old House TV:
Homeowners have a virtual truckload of questions for us on smaller projects, and we’re ready to answer. Ask This Old House solves the steady stream of home improvement problems faced by our viewers—and we make house calls! Ask This Old House features some familiar faces from This Old House, including Kevin O’Connor, general contractor Tom Silva, plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey, and landscape contractor Roger Cook.

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How to Install a Whole-House Water Softener | Ask This Old House
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