WHAT TO LOOK FOR|
With so many companies offering water treatment systems and such a wide range of prices, it's difficult to know how one system compares to another. Listed below are some important tips to help consumers make an informed decision about their needs.
- Many new companies open up each year with limited experience and knowledge about the water treatment industry.
- Many companies close down every year leaving consumers without service and warranty support.
- Shop with a national company that can provide warranties, service, parts and filters.
- Ask to read the original manufacturers warranty. Do not accept verbal promises from the salesperson.
- Does a "lifetime" warranty cover your life?, the companies life?, your home's life?, or the salesman's life?
- A "lifetime" warranty is always a "limited lifetime" with the most expensive parts not covered for more than a year or two.
- Make sure the warranty is fully transferable if you move to a new home or want to sell the unit to a new owner.
- NSF (National Sanitation Foundation) is the most important third party certification organization for water treatment systems.
- NSF has established the highest standards for product claims, manufacturing practices and product design
- Make sure the entire system you're evaluating is NSF certified and not just a specific component.
- Efficiency refers to how much regenerant (salt or potassium) is required, how much water is needed, and how much time it takes to regenerate the system.
- One system may use 4-5 time less regenerant and 9-10 times less water than another.
- Consumers should compare the cost to operate and amount of maintenance required on each system they're considering.
- Shop and compare with reputable national companies. A low price is no bargain if the company is out of business in a year or two.
- Make sure the quoted price includes installation. Get a written quote and make sure there are no hidden charges.
- The company should provide literature, specifications, operating costs, written warranties and third party validations on the exact system quoted.
- Review costs to operate a system as well as cost to purchase
- In many cases, the maintenance costs on a low priced system exceeds the savings.
- The best value is the combination of a quality product with low maintenance and a solid manufacturers warranty.
- Ask to see an owners manual before purchasing and review how to operate the system.
- Find out how to troubleshoot the system if something goes wrong and to set or reset the unit.
- If shopping for a drinking water system, review how to change the filters and how long the components last.