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Deionized Water System - Budget Build

King295

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This subject has came up a few times and RD has recently showcased his garage mounted deionized (DI) water/wash system with proclaimed great results. Since those threads every time I have went to wash a vehicle I've been telling myself I would pull the trigger and buy a system.

After a late night celebrating a family member's birthday last night I woke up this morning and fired up the computer while I had my coffee and caught up on RDP and my typical go-to sites. As I sat in my garage looking at my truck that hasn't been washed in a month (the recent So Cal rains actually helped, pathetic I know) I decided to search Craigslist and a CR Spotless DIC-20 mobile system popped up for $275 a few miles away so I figured what the hell. Give the guy a ring and was in route within a few minutes.

After a full rundown from the seller including him showing me total dissolved solids (TDS) readings from his faucet and from the system (300+ at faucet / 0 from system) via his tester (not included but the system has one) I figured I couldn't go wrong. The filters were just replaced so I had a good starter unit and at about 1/2 the cost of a new unit after tax and shipping I figured I was off to a solid start.

A quick trip to the orange store managed to get me everything I needed to get this set up for my pressure washer and enable quick connect/disconnect and bypass the DI system to preserve the filters when not needed. Per the company's site and the seller it is recommended to use washing machine hose for the inlet water, but the orange store only sold a two pack so now I've got stainless inlet and outlet lines (feeling fancy/baller-esque now). Here is the setup, nothing crazy here just some splitters and quick disconnects from the garden section.

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My planter looks like shit, I know...
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For my first attempt at washing I ran DI water the entire time (initial pressure wash, Chemical Guys foam cannon, scrub with a long handled brush, rinse, hit rims and front end with a soapy microfiber, final rinse). I started at about 4pm so daylight was working against me (last picture current state of affairs). I finished around 4:30pm and blew excess water off with my gas powered leaf blower and took a microfiber to the few beaded water areas (roof, crevices, door jams etc.). This was stupid easy....

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Overall I've gotta say I'm really impressed with this DI system and I'm generally pissed that I didn't buy one of these sooner. I'm an OCD clean freak and this just made my life way easier.

Now its cocktail time. Cheers!

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DLC

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I got the chucky system and I connect directly to my Ryobi PW I use the PW only for washing the cars. I also got the foam cannon for soap, works great. I need another system in Havasu....
 

Kbach

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Funny you post this since I was in the EXACT same situation today!!

I found a DI-120 system (single canister) on CL a few weeks ago and finally tried it out today. I wanted a dual filter like yours but I couldn't pass up the deal I found. It came with the DI-120 filter/TDS meter, a couple hoses, funnel...and most importantly 1-1/2 5 gallon buckets of new resin for $50. I couldn't get to the guys house fast enough when I saw the ad posted!!!

Anyway, hooked it up to my electric pressure washer today and washed the wife's Jeep and my Silverado in direct sunlight. Blew them both off with my electric blower and that was it. Holy shit....no spots! Took less time overall than it usually takes me to wash/dry one vehicle.

After using it today, I was extremely happy, but also super pissed at myself for not buying a DI water system years ago.

Crappy post wash Jeep pic:
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WhatExit?

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Thanks for posting this - I'm sure I'm like others here who've read about RD's system and thought about getting one. I'm still on the sidelines but want one
 

RiverDave

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Happy to see it working out for you guys! I used to wash my cars and the outside would take me hours.. Wash / soap / dry.. Then pull it into the garage and see all the spots and I'd go nuts and spend hours with spray waxes etc..

Now I just pressure wash with tap water / flip the switches / pressure wash with DI water and the things look pretty good.. LOL A little more effort with soap etc.. and they look great! Literally shaves hours off my life.

My Ranger is pretty dirty right now and was thinking about posting in the thread again just showing what you can do with a pressure washer and zero soap etc..

RD
 

King295

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Happy to see it working out for you guys! I used to wash my cars and the outside would take me hours.. Wash / soap / dry.. Then pull it into the garage and see all the spots and I'd go nuts and spend hours with spray waxes etc..

Now I just pressure wash with tap water / flip the switches / pressure wash with DI water and the things look pretty good.. LOL A little more effort with soap etc.. and they look great! Literally shaves hours off my life.

My Ranger is pretty dirty right now and was thinking about posting in the thread again just showing what you can do with a pressure washer and zero soap etc..

RD
I'm interested to see how I fare running tap water for the initial wash and soap and then finishing with DI. I'm not too sure how much I will ultimately save with that method if I really want to be sure that I remove all the non DI water.

Either way I'm pretty happy with this setup that I'm into for about $325 all in.

One downfall is after raving about it to my wife she quickly jumped on board and said "Then my car should take you no time at all, get to it!"
 

RiverDave

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I'm interested to see how I fare running tap water for the initial wash and soap and then finishing with DI. I'm not too sure how much I will ultimately save with that method if I really want to be sure that I remove all the non DI water.

Either way I'm pretty happy with this setup that I'm into for about $325 all in.

One downfall is after raving about it to my wife she quickly jumped on board and said "Then my car should take you no time at all, get to it!"
I don't remember the specs on my pressure washer but the GPM is actually pretty low like 2-3 GPM. The only thing you really need to "clear" is hose and pressure washer hose and how much water can that really hold? A gallon maybe two?

When I do mine I run it the whole time on tap water to get the grime off / dirt etc.. and then switch to DI water and let it run for a minute or so (still spraying the truck in spots that need more attention) and after that it's pretty much cleared. In your setup once you flip the valves all you have is the hose in the pressure washer so it would only take 10-20 seconds?

To answer the question though on a 3GPM flow rate if you spend 10 minutes pressure washing your truck you went through 30 gallons (assuming it was Wide open the whole time). If you spend that time using normal water and then 2 minutes at the end you used 6 gallons. Those filters with the stock cartridges are good for I think 300-400 gallons depending on TDS from tap water? You can see how it adds up quickly.

RD
 

King295

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I don't remember the specs on my pressure washer but the GPM is actually pretty low like 2-3 GPM. The only thing you really need to "clear" is hose and pressure washer hose and how much water can that really hold? A gallon maybe two?

When I do mine I run it the whole time on tap water to get the grime off / dirt etc.. and then switch to DI water and let it run for a minute or so (still spraying the truck in spots that need more attention) and after that it's pretty much cleared. In your setup once you flip the valves all you have is the hose in the pressure washer so it would only take 10-20 seconds?

To answer the question though on a 3GPM flow rate if you spend 10 minutes pressure washing your truck you went through 30 gallons (assuming it was Wide open the whole time). If you spend that time using normal water and then 2 minutes at the end you used 6 gallons. Those filters with the stock cartridges are good for I think 300-400 gallons depending on TDS from tap water? You can see how it adds up quickly.

RD
My pressure washer runs at 2.4 GPM (gas powered Subaru 3,100 PSI with a fancy electric start) and my DI unit filters are rated for about 300 gallons. I probably ran my pressure washer for 10 minutes as I wasn't really concerned about conservation of the filters for the first run, but I obviously will want to conserve going forward.

I figure with replacement resin cartridges at $99 + $20 for shipping via the CR Spotless exchange program that puts each wash at about $9.60 (assuming 10 minutes of run time I figure 10 minutes x 2.4 GPM = 24 gallons | 300 gallons divided by 24 = 12.5 washes | $120 replacement filters divided by 12.5 washes = $9.60). That sure as hell beats $30 bucks for a car wash with tip for my truck at the local hand wash spot and if I drop down DI usage to the final rinse only I should be in even better shape.
 

RiverDave

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My pressure washer runs at 2.4 GPM (gas powered Subaru 3,100 PSI with a fancy electric start) and my DI unit filters are rated for about 300 gallons. I probably ran my pressure washer for 10 minutes as I wasn't really concerned about conservation of the filters for the first run, but I obviously will want to conserve going forward.

I figure with replacement resin cartridges at $99 + $20 for shipping via the CR Spotless exchange program that puts each wash at about $9.60 (assuming 10 minutes of run time I figure 10 minutes x 2.4 GPM = 24 gallons | 300 gallons divided by 24 = 12.5 washes | $120 replacement filters divided by 12.5 washes = $9.60). That sure as hell beats $30 bucks for a car wash with tip for my truck at the local hand wash spot and if I drop down DI usage to the final rinse only I should be in even better shape.
Look into the conversion kits for the filters. They ditch the cartridges and turn the whole canister DI resin. Filters like 10 times more water.

RD
 

Roaddawg

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Look into the conversion kits for the filters. They ditch the cartridges and turn the whole canister DI resin. Filters like 10 times more water.

RD
I just did that setup on mine and it seems to be working pretty good so far
 

Roaddawg

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Here is my setup with bypass for the filters.
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jscarab

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Look into the conversion kits for the filters. They ditch the cartridges and turn the whole canister DI resin. Filters like 10 times more water.

RD
I need to get some pics together, but I have the dic-20 and the conversion kit that I will be selling. Also comes with about 25lbs of new resin. Unit works great just not for my application. I was trying to fill my fresh water tank on my boat with DI water. Just not economically feasible. Hope to have pics by tomorrow. It’s just like the pics just not on the cart, more RD style. It is an actual “spotless” unit.
 

BHC Vic

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Ok I’m in. Where’s the best place to buy one. Maybe it can be in norco before I get home Friday.
 

WaterMike

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https://www.uswatersystems.com/us-water-patriot-dual-2-5-x-20-di-system.html?quantity=1&conductivity-monitor=1

Cheapest unit I could find. Reverseosmosis.com had the same unit for $190, but their site is not working. You can extend the media life if you use soft water from your water softener, hose spigots should be strait city water(pre softener unit)(high TDS in Havasu).

I started with this unit VVV, only got 2 washes from hose water. I get 4-5 on soft water on an extra cab Silverado only using it for the last rinse
https://www.amazon.com/Aquatic-Life-Deionized-Spot-Free-Rinse/dp/B07H8MQTMD/ref=sr_1_25?crid=O32I2Q5NVFED&keywords=deionized+water&qid=1559578558&s=gateway&sprefix=deion,aps,217&sr=8-25
 

Roaddawg

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Now that I think about I don't think I did. I haven't had any issues with it though

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buck35

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Now that I think about I don't think I did. I haven't had any issues with it though

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I don't see any unions .are they on the canisters?
 

Ballsdeep

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Maybe I missed it, how long do these filters last for an occasional car wash and washing my motorhome?
 

LHC30

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King295, what are the wires on the fittings? I have a twin CR Spotless and don’t have those wires
 

King295

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Maybe I missed it, how long do these filters last for an occasional car wash and washing my motorhome?
It depends on what the flow rate is on your pressure washer. I ball park about 15-20 washes based on my setup and revised usage of only using DI water for the final rinse which has been working fine (see post #11 above). I actually have my first set of replacement cartridges arriving tomorrow. I need to look into modifying the tubes to take full resin pellets instead of the canisters.

King295, what are the wires on the fittings? I have a twin CR Spotless and don’t have those wires
Gotta be the TDS sensor wires, but I'll double check tonight. The guy I bought it from put some odd fittings on it and I haven't had a chance (or desire for that matter) to change them.
 

PlanB

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This is the system I have had for many years now: https://www.portablewaterdi.com/shop/deionizers/dual-bed-deionizer-standard-model?SKU=OTG2-DDI

You have to keep the bottles charged properly, but if you do it works very well.

I started using a DI system when we bought our Top Gun in 2001. I could wash the entire boat including misting down the motors and be done in about an hour. Let it air dry and stick it back in the garage and it always looked great. You can't beat a good DI system.
 

Zhammy3

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I have been in home spotless washing gig for a about 8 years now. have found you really only need a reverse osmosis setup. I have produced thousands of gallons of spot free water, store it into a holding container than into a pressure washer
 

Roaddawg

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I don't see any unions .are they on the canisters?
No unions..Just some street 90's from the canisters and the ball valves to bypass them, 2 regular 90's and 2 t's
 

LakeMead Boater

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A few months back, I bought a truck off @King295. If any of you know him, he keeps his stuff extremely clean! Living in a town home community, washing cars is a PITA and taking it to a car wash adds up quick.

After taking over his truck, I didn’t want to let him down and so I started researching a few other options for systems. I ended up with the Unger system below that I found on Costco online. I’m familiar with their brand as I use to rep the line when I worked for WAXIE. Anyways, for $160, I figured I’d give it a shot. Each resin bag is supposed to be good for 11 washes and a pack of 2 is around $70 if I’m not mistaken. Breaks it down to a little over $3 per wash. My dad also has a commercial version I sold him to wash down the boat, motorhome, or Harley’s while traveling. His works pretty bitchin!

Unger recommends that you fill their sprayer with soap and go at it. I figured I would hose down the car with regular water and then use the Unger unit for the final rinse. My goal is to maximize the resin bags for as long as possible. I washed my wife’s SUV last weekend and then my truck this weekend and I have to say, I’m pretty impressed. Washing cars was a 2 hour ordeal with normal water and I used a Turtle Wax spray to help dry. Now it’s a wash, drive it around the block, and dry the windows. After I vacuum and clean the door jams, I’ll dry the outside of the vehicle. I just need an electric blower and I think that will help the process. All in all, I would give the unit a 9/10 and I don’t feel I wasted my money at $160.

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King295

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A few months back, I bought a truck off @King295. If any of you know him, he keeps his stuff extremely clean! Living in a town home community, washing cars is a PITA and taking it to a car wash adds up quick.

After taking over his truck, I didn’t want to let him down and so I started researching a few other options for systems. I ended up with the Unger system below that I found on Costco online. I’m familiar with their brand as I use to rep the line when I worked for WAXIE. Anyways, for $160, I figured I’d give it a shot. Each resin bag is supposed to be good for 11 washes and a pack of 2 is around $70 if I’m not mistaken. Breaks it down to a little over $3 per wash. My dad also has a commercial version I sold him to wash down the boat, motorhome, or Harley’s while traveling. His works pretty bitchin!

Unger recommends that you fill their sprayer with soap and go at it. I figured I would hose down the car with regular water and then use the Unger unit for the final rinse. My goal is to maximize the resin bags for as long as possible. I washed my wife’s SUV last weekend and then my truck this weekend and I have to say, I’m pretty impressed. Washing cars was a 2 hour ordeal with normal water and I used a Turtle Wax spray to help dry. Now it’s a wash, drive it around the block, and dry the windows. After I vacuum and clean the door jams, I’ll dry the outside of the vehicle. I just need an electric blower and I think that will help the process. All in all, I would give the unit a 9/10 and I don’t feel I wasted my money at $160.

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Sweet setup! Looks like a great smaller system, may have to pick one up for my 5th wheel. It gets hammered sitting out at the river.

Truck looks great by the way. Still miss the convenience of a half ton pickup.
 

LakeMead Boater

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Sweet setup! Looks like a great smaller system, may have to pick one up for my 5th wheel. It gets hammered sitting out at the river.

Truck looks great by the way. Still miss the convenience of a half ton pickup.
It’s a great truck, favorite vehicle so far!

And yes, this would be perfect for the trailer. It’s only about 15-18” tall, comes with an inlet hose and then Id recommend one of those expandable soft hoses.
 

LHC Kirby

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As I sat in my garage looking at my truck that hasn't been washed in a month

My planter looks like shit, I know...

I'm an OCD clean freak
I’m thinking you’re not a true OCD clean freak :p

You might be like me, I can’t just clean the windows..... on the outside, the inside has to be cleaned too. I can’t just rinse off the car and call it good..... I have to do door jams, around the hood, trunk edging, wheel wells, if I’m washing it.... I’m CLEANING IT ...
 

King295

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I’m thinking you’re not a true OCD clean freak :p

You might be like me, I can’t just clean the windows..... on the outside, the inside has to be cleaned too. I can’t just rinse off the car and call it good..... I have to do door jams, around the hood, trunk edging, wheel wells, if I’m washing it.... I’m CLEANING IT ...
Well played on the selective quote :D

Definitely the same, there is no such thing as a "good enough" cleaning job. It is all or nothing. Thanks for the reminder that I need to clean my windows (DI system is awesome for this!)
 
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