About Us

The Empirico Story

As a new homeowner in Phoenix, Arizona, in 1980; our Founder, Barry Hess, needed clean, safe water like what he enjoyed back in the White Mountains of northern New Hampshire.  He knew, even way back then that municipalities were putting poisons like Fluoride and Chlorine directly into people's drinking water; and completely ignoring the hundreds of chemicals that had already contaminated most of the country's aquifers from industrial and agricultural uses.

He just wanted to solve a problem, but found himself totally frustrated with all the old-fashioned 'water softener' sales people.  They tried to bamboozle him with lots of technical nonsense and offered him different sizes and prices to try to get the sale, but he would have none of that.

Every one of them told him it would cost a fortune to give him the quality of clean, safe water he wanted for his home and family  When he balked at the price; they would always offer him a cheaper system.  They didn't care about the quality of his water; they just wanted to make a sale.  But he didn't care about the cost; so, using his international trading company connections, he searched World-wide.  What he found was that what he wanted was military-commercial grade materials and construction, and the costs were a little prohibitive for the average homeowner.  He wanted a system that would serve his family for the rest of their lives, and didn't give up.  His singular focus was on what would come out of his faucets--and that has never changed.

He made a decision to build his own system, and began building relationships with the manufacturers of the materials he needed.   After some time, they agreed to sell to him.  That first system is still in regular use to this day--39 years later).  Soon, he was building systems for his family; and then for his friends.  That led to people he didn't know  asking him to build them a system, too, because his costs were only a little above what just the old water softeners cost retail.

That's when Empirico Water Systems was born, offering consumers a military-grade, commercial water treatment system, at a far more reasonable price than most people would expect.. 

The enterprise grew exponentially, and by 1986 Barry was able to offer his whole-house systems; complete with the highest-quality Reverse Osmosis drinking water for cooking and cleaning, for only $5,995.00--installed.

He worked diligently to lower the expense by re-negotiating for materials needed, and inventing new ways to lessen installation costs; and within a few short years he was able to lower his pricing to just $3,995.00 for a complete 2-unit water treatment system that does the work of 6 individual units (*including softening) for individual residences.  Our system is designed for 4-unit motels or apartments, because we are well-aware that our water supplies are only getting worse; and Barry's philosophy is simple--'Better too much capacity; than too little', or as he puts it; "Better Overkill; than underkill".

Without spending a dime on advertising, word-of-mouth testimonials and referrals from his customers made Empirico a force in the industry.  By 2008, entertainment celebrities, professional athletes and business tycoons were asking us to ship our systems to them--and many times, they foot the bill for sending our installation professionals all over the continent.

By 2019, our customers were in every state in the union, as well as Canada, Mexico, and Saudi Arabia.  It was never our intention to go global, but we took out our sharpest pencils and really figured out our true costs for every aspect of our business.  We were shocked at what we found; and that's why we have decided to give up our fancy retail offices, and offer our systems on the Internet--directly to consumers.

We found that the on-going costs of insurances; installer commissions; retail sales commissions; bonds; licenses; truck inventories; insurances; leases; permits, and all the rest, gobbled up over 40% of our retail price!

Now we can offer consumers the same incredible system, for less than $3,000.00--that's a lot LESS than just the old water softeners cost these days; and their useful life is limited to 3-5 years.  We're proud of ourselves, and our lifetime products!

We believe every home and family needs to have our system.  We offer free shipping; complete installation instructions that any handyman can follow to have your system installed and on-line in a matter of a couple of hours, or less (*Our best installation time was just under 20 minutes from start to finish--but the average is 60-90 minutes).  We also offer e-mail, and direct customer support over the phone to insure your system is doing all that you expected.

Our systems come with a real manufacturers' guarantee (*Not just from a local franchised distributorship) and our commitment to making sure our customer's are 100% satisfied with their systems.

Finally, We have to mention our new Global Emporium of great products. Because Empirico is also an International Trading Company, we are now offering exceptional water treatment solutions for every circumstance and occasion, like;camping, hiking, survival, motels, etc.  We hope you like what we bring for your consideration.  No BS, just clean, soft water!