Have you ever tasted your drinking water at home? Usually your tap water is not as clean as you think and leads to bad tasting hard water (hardness minerals and contaminants) from your local water supply. Water hardness is based off the concentration of hard minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, in water. “Soft water” has very low concentration of hard minerals, while “very hard water” has a relatively high concentration of hard minerals. Using hard water can cause mineral buildup inside of your water-using appliances which can lead to long term damage. Water softening systems “soften” the hard water by removing mineral ions through a process named ion exchange. This process consists of exchanging positively charged mineral ions in the hard water with positively charged ions, leaving the softened water free of mineral ions. There are two tanks in a water softener system that facilitate this ion exchange, the resin tank (aka mineral tank) and the brine softener tank. The resin tank does the bulk of the water softening as the sodium ions from the brine solution exchange places with the mineral ions (water hardness ions). Ion exchange resin beads and water combine resulting in the hardness minerals attaching to the beads. Once all of the resin beads have been covered in hardness minerals, they are flushed out of the tank using either potassium chloride or sodium chloride. The water exiting the resin tank contains a very small number of sodium ions, but no longer contains high levels of hard mineral ions. The brine tank then recharges the resin tank through a flushing process where the resin tank is rinsed with salt water from the brine tank. The salt water saturates the resin bead, removing any stuck mineral ion and replacing them with a sodium ion. The dissolved minerals are then flushed and the system is ready to soften water again.
There are many benefits of installing a water softener system in your home.
Which Kind of Water Softener is Right for Me?
Do I go with a “salt free” or “salt water softener” (aka the commonly known water softener)? Does the softened water go into my whole home including the water heater?
Deciphering the difference between the multitude of water softening options is not easy, but we’re here to help. Depending on your level of water usage or hardness level, we may recommend different solutions. You can learn more about water softeners and the benefits HERE.
Don’t worry about figuring out the difference between a reverse osmosis system, salt based softener, and a salt free water softener…that’s our job.
Our experts are here to help you with any water softener installation or water softener repair. Contact us and learn more about a free trial today!