Commercial Water softener kit

Case Study: Commercial Water Softener Recommission for a Major Communications Company

A major communications company, dissatisfied with their current commercial water softener vendor, sought a second opinion from Shafer Mechanical. Despite a long-standing relationship with their vendor, they rarely saw any maintenance work being performed and questioned the effectiveness of their water softener system.


The customer needed a thorough assessment and maintenance of their commercial water softener system to ensure it was functioning correctly and efficiently. They also wanted to educate their facilities staff on basic maintenance tasks to improve overall system performance between professional visits.

commercial water softener master plumberSolution

Shafer Mechanical assigned Adam Thurmond, a Master Plumber with extensive experience in commercial water softeners, to the task. Adam’s approach involved:

  1. Education and Empowerment: He educated the customer’s facilities staff on the basic functions of water softeners and simple maintenance tasks they could perform between professional visits.
  2. Comprehensive Diagnostics: Adam conducted a detailed assessment of the water softener system, including:
    • Testing incoming water quality from city supply to determine how much salt the water was going to need.
    • Adjusting the software and programming.
    • Running regeneration cycles.
    • Testing outgoing water hardness and TDS levels.
    • Inspecting drain work to ensure proper air gaps and prevent contamination.
    • Checking bypasses to ensure emergency systems were operational.
  3. Identification of Critical Issues:
    • Lack of Air Gap: The system was pulling in sewage during regeneration due to the absence of an air gap.
    • Improper Drain Setup: The brine tank’s secondary drain was improperly tied into the sewer system, leading to visible contamination.
    • Timer Malfunctions: Incorrect timer settings caused regeneration cycles to run at 2pm instead of 2am, allowing hard water into the building during peak usage.
    • Oversalting: Incorrect settings resulted in excessive salt usage, wasting water and increasing costs.
  4. Resolution: Shafer Mechanical corrected the plumbing issues, recommissioned the equipment, and ensured it was properly set up and calibrated. Proper setup involved resetting timers, adjusting settings, and educating the staff on proper maintenance procedures.


Since Shafer Mechanical’s intervention, the customer has experienced:

  • A 10% reduction in water usage.
  • Noticeable energy savings.
  • Optimal water hardness levels, confirmed by advanced testing tools.

Impressed by the thoroughness and expertise of Shafer Mechanical, the customer terminated their agreement with the previous vendor and engaged Shafer Mechanical for ongoing maintenance. They also requested testing and optimization of other water softeners in their facility.


Shafer Mechanical’s commitment to solving problems, educating customers, and maintaining open communication has solidified our relationship with this major communications company. Our expertise and dedication to integrity have resulted in significant cost savings and improved system performance for our client.

For more information on how Shafer Mechanical can support your commercial HVAC and plumbing needs, please contact us today and we’ll have an Account Manager reach out.


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