If you’ve taken the leap and installed a water softener, you’re likely enjoying the benefits. From easier cleaning to softer hair to longer-lasting appliances, the benefits of installing a water softener are numerous.1
Now that you’ve made the switch and are relishing in your new life of aquatic luxury, you might be wondering: how often does a water softener regenerate?
There are a wide variety of factors that affect the frequency of water regeneration.2 To help you decide whether to manually or automatically regenerate-and how often-we’ll take a deep dive into the world of water softener regeneration.
You have a water softener—but do you understand what it actually does?
The first step on your journey to calculating your regeneration needs is to understand what makes water hard and how softeners correct the issue.
How hard is the water in your geographic area?
Here’s a simple breakdown of the water hardness scale:
Hard, untreated water can have numerous unwanted qualities. Yours might taste chalky, make your laundry stiff, ruin your coffee, or even take a toll on your plumbing. Luckily, a water softener can help improve your water quality and contribute to lower hard water minerals.
How does a water softener work? Through the process of ion exchange, water softeners emit the mineral ions in hard water, softening the water before it ever flows from your faucet3.
As a result, the unwanted minerals are removed.
Now that you understand water softening, you’re ready to take the leap into the world of regeneration.
As water flows from your taps, the process of ion exchange repeats, and, eventually, the resin beads become inundated with these hard minerals.
So, what do water softeners do? Simply put, water regeneration is the process by which these beads are cleaned so they can continue their mission of softening your water.
There are three main options for the water regeneration process:
Generally, the water regeneration process takes about 85 to 90 minutes and involves four main steps:4
As we noted, the average family’s water softener should regenerate every other day. But some families might need daily regeneration, while others need it only once per week.
This begs the question once again—How often should my water softener regenerate?
To calculate the answer, you’ll want to pay attention to two main factors:
In addition to your water usage and water hardness, you’ll also need to know:
Once you’ve determined these two numbers, you can input your water usage and water hardness to determine how often your water softener needs to regenerate.
A typical family of four might use 75 gallons each, or 300 gallons total per day. This water usage encompasses standard activities like:
If that family has 25-grain water, they’ll divide 30,000—the capacity of their softener in grains-per-cubic-foot—by 25—the hardness of their water—to find that they can soften about 1,200 gallons between each regeneration cycle.
If this family of four has a 1-cubic-foot softener and 25-grain hard water, their water softener will regenerate every other day. On the other hand, with 12-grain water, the water softener regeneration cycle would occur every four days. With 50-grain water, it would need to regenerate every day.2
Many homeowners are unaware of how much water they actually use. Think about it—were you surprised to learn a typical family of four might use 500 gallons of water per day?
If you need to know how much water your family uses, you can complete a household water audit. Here are three easy ways to conduct this audit:
For faucets, collect water for 10 seconds and multiply the water quantity by six to calculate gallons per minute. For toilets, turn off the water supply, mark the water line, flush, fill the tank with tap water, and measure the volume of water required to reach the water line mark. For appliances, the manufacturer should specify the flow rate.
Measure how many times per day you use each fixture. Multiply water flow per fixture by minutes per day and water flow per appliance by the number of times it’s used per week.6
If you’ve gone through the process of installing a water softener, you will want to ensure that it’s working correctly, so you receive its full benefits.
Two majors factors indicate your water softener isn’t regenerating properly:
Cheaply made or poorly taken care of water softeners can result in these issues.7 That’s why you should ensure you buy a high-quality water softener from a trusted company like Rayne Water.
You might have asked yourself the question: Do I need a water softener? Once you’ve experienced the benefits of a water softener, you’ll never want to go back. Who doesn’t want softer hair, cleaner dishes, and more efficient appliances?
Rayne Water can also help you get the most out of your water softener. We serve California and Arizona, offering a wide variety of products and solutions, including water filtration, drinking water systems, and, of course, water softeners.
Contact Rayne Water for all of your water treatment needs and to improve your water quality. We’ll never leave you high and dry.