Moved into a 1950s home with galvanized pipes and 20+gpg hard water. Doing renovations and hard water is beating up everything new, so I want to install a water softener resin+brine tank like the Aquasure Harmony 48k grain. I had a Culligan representative come out and determine that the best location is outside at the city water inlet. My water heater is indoors with no room for an adjacent water softener. Culligan quoted $3500 for the unit and install... so I'm hoping to do it myself.
I would built a shed/overhang extending from the fence to protect the unit, plumbing, electricals. The workable pipe space between the city inlet and the wall is short, about 6", making it a bit tough. The inlet also diverts in the opposite direction for a hose valve and sprinkler system. Questions I have:
Would CPVC be sufficient? Or would copper be recommended? Or FLEX stainless steel tubing with an extension flex tubing to create ~40" length?
I understand I would need dielectric unions between galvanized and copper, or other couplers for between galvanized and cpvc. Any recommendations here would be great.
If choosing copper, I would likely opt for sharkbite connectors as opposed to soldering, though I could learn the latter if need be. Would sharkbite connectors be a no-no for this line?
Where do I plumb in shut-off valves?
Do I need to (how do I) plumb in a loop? What is the issue with not having a loop?
No outlet nearby. I plan to run an extension cord through the crawlspace and out the vent. Any issues with this?
Basically I'm hoping to get a diagram! I'm a DIYer with no plumbing experience, but have read up on plumbing options and feel comfortable doing the install -- so long as I have a good idea of how to run the lines.