Consider Water Softener Options for Your Home
Not every home comes equipped with a water softener. This informational guide was designed to provide you with all the information you need in order to make an educated and informed decision about what type of water softener is best for you and your home. Whether you have a water softener and want to know more about it or are looking to purchase a new water softener, our team of expert water treatment specialists can help you make the best decision for your situation.
Not exactly sure what a water softener is or does? Check out this blog post for more information.
How do I choose a water softener for my home?
Choosing a water softener for your home and its unique needs is no easy task. You need to take into consideration the hardness of your water, your water usage needs, and the state of your water-using appliances. After you’ve done your research, you’ll need to decide how much money you are willing to spend on a water softener.
With so many factors at play, we are here to help you make the right decision for your situation. First, let’s discuss the different types of water softeners.
What kinds of water softeners are out there?
We categorize water softeners into three tiers: low-end, middle of the road, and high-end. These tiers separate the basic models from the high-efficiency and high-quality softeners.
“Do it Yourself” system from any large hardware store, like Menards or Home Depot. These systems are designed for a homeowner to be able to install without the help of a professional plumber. While this is a convenient method, the units available at these stores are generally lower quality than those from plumbing suppliers. They are built to be affordable for the average homeowner while still turning a profit for the manufacturer. Sometimes this means using lower quality metals or even replacing metal parts with plastic ones.
2. Middle of the road
Contractor/plumber entry level lines. These are the units purchased through a plumbing supply store. These stores sometimes restrict who can purchase from them, some only work with local licensed/certified plumbers. The units themselves have the same names and brands as the softeners you find at hardware stores, just made with higher quality parts.
Kinetico Water Systems. These high-end water softeners are efficient and durable. They also have the highest water capacity of all three softener tiers and they can be customized for your specific water concerns. Kinetico offers non-electric and salt-less options. Because of this, you will save money on your electric bill and on water softener salt, since you won’t need to buy it. We know that these high-end water softeners can be pricey and out of the average homeowner’s desired budget. However, as price increases so does quality, efficiency, and durability.
Are there alternative water softening solutions?
No. There isn’t anything that does what a water softener does.
However, if you have concerns with standard water softening procedures and don’t want to use regular salt, sodium chloride (NaCl), you can use Potassium Chloride (KCl). The downside is that potassium chloride is generally more expensive, and you’ll need to use larger quantities to get the same amount of soft water than if you used sodium chloride.
There are small environmental benefits of using potassium chloride in place of sodium chloride. Potassium chloride can be absorbed by plants and will benefit their growth while sodium chloride is released into the environment. The minimal amount of sodium chloride released from water softeners isn’t necessarily dangerous to the environment, however, any small positive impact an individual can make on the environment is a tremendously good thing.
The negative environmental impact of releasing sodium chloride can also be remedied with a salt-less water softener from Kinetico. Other alternatives to a regular salt-using water softener include investing in a scale reduction system or a reverse osmosis system as offered by Kinetico.
At what hardness is a water softener recommended?
Technically, anything over 1 grain per gallon or 17.1 parts per million is considered hard water. Anything over 10.5 grains per gallon is considered “extremely” hard water and you really should have a softener.
So, depending on who you ask, you should have a water softener if your water contains anywhere from 1-10 grains of hardness per gallon. If your water has more than 10 grains of hardness per gallon you will want a water softener.
At 10 grains of hardness per gallon you start to feel the hard water affecting your hair and skin and you’ll notice water spots on your dishes and even stains in the sink and bathtub/shower.
Your water using appliances will be in jeopardy as well. Hard water can cause limescale buildups that can damage your appliances and significantly shorten their lifespans.
Are you ready for soft water?
Now that you have all the information you’ll need to make an educated decision about which water softener to get for your home, you are ready for soft water!
If you are still struggling to decide or would like a second opinion, give us a call and one of our licensed professionals will come out at a time that is convenient for you to test your water for free and make recommendations for your unique situation.
Our team of expert water treatment professionals have been trained to make recommendations based on each client’s situation and financial availability.
We care about doing what’s right for our customers and providing them with all the support and answers they are looking for. Aquarius strives for the right to be recommended.