Many people understand the importance of having high-quality drinking water for the health and safety of their families. Increasingly, more homeowners have also begun appreciating the need for a proper water softener system to prevent all kinds of problems that hard water can cause in the home.
Despite this awareness, many individuals mistakenly confuse water softening and water filtration systems, thinking they are one and the same. While these two types of water conditioning are necessary to improve the quality of your home’s water, they play very different roles in achieving this goal. Today, we will discuss the differences between a water softener and a water filter, and why you ultimately need both types of systems for your home.
What is Water Softening?
Ions like calcium and magnesium are considered hard water ions, and they typically reside in public water at high concentrations. This can be due to many factors, but some areas have high concentrations of these minerals in surrounding dirt and rocks. These ions can leach into a water supply and wreak havoc by creating mineral buildup on appliances, staining fabrics, and leading to dry, itchy skin.
Water softeners combat these hard water issues through a mechanism called ion exchange. Water softeners store salts that contain softer ions, like sodium and potassium, in a resin bed. When hard water enters this resin bed, those hard ions exchange with the soft ions, which then continue on for use all over your home. Every few months, water softener owners will have to add more water softening salts to allow this process to continue.
Water softening is all about the swap of hard ions with softer ones. Water filtration, on the other hand, focuses on the removal of particles and other contaminants in your water supply.
What is Water Filtration?
There is nothing better than a crisp, clear glass of water after a long workout or a day outside in the hot sun. Conversely, few things are more unappetizing than a glass of water that tastes like metal or smells like rotten eggs. Both of these problems can be caused by contaminants in your drinking water, and the only way to get rid of these contaminants is through a comprehensive filtration system.
Particles like sand, silt, and rust can flow into your home’s water system, as can bacteria, viruses, and other microbes. These not only negatively affect the look and taste of your water, but they can also make you and your family sick. Some contaminants, like arsenic, are especially malicious. Arsenic can cause long-term health problems, but it is completely flavorless and odorless. Most people who have high concentrations of arsenic in their water supply do not know until it’s too late.
Like most important home purchases, not all water filters are created equally. Some only filter out larger particles such as silt and sand, yet let bacteria and other microbes through. Other filters may provide mechanisms to kill bacteria, but they still allow other contaminants to slip by. Your best bet is to purchase a high-quality water filter that handles all types of contaminants in one go. We always recommend Kinetico products simply because no other products can provide the same degree of filtration for the price. They’re also made in America.
Can Water Softeners Also Provide Filtration?
When homeowners install a new water softening system into their home, many assume that these devices come equipped with filtration systems, too. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Your home may now have softer water, but harmful bacteria and other contaminants may still be present in your home’s water supply. Conversely, homes that have filtration systems but don’t have water softeners will still suffer from the annoyances that hard water can produce.
As a result, it is imperative that homeowners have both a water softener and a water filtration system. The specific types of each system you may need in your home depend on a wide variety of factors. Trying to learn about different options to come to a decision can feel overwhelming and confusing for homeowners. Fortunately, we can help!
Free In-Home Water Testing
You don’t have to be an expert on these topics to get what you need in order to obtain the highest quality water in your home. Aquarius Water Conditioning offers free in-home water tests that can tell our staff which contaminants or problems you may have in your home’s water supply. For example, our analysis may find that your home’s water contains high concentrations of iron, bacteria, chlorine, tannins, or more!
Once we have the results of the analysis, we will work with you to create a comprehensive, yet affordable water treatment plan. We can help you decide if you need new equipment, like a water filtration system or water softener, or if some routine maintenance on your existing equipment will do the trick. The professionals at Aquarius Water Conditioning can take all the guesswork out of determining what your home needs to have the highest quality water possible.
Contact the Pros at Aquarius Water Conditioning
The professionals at Aquarius Water Conditioning believe that every family deserves to have access to high-quality water in their home. That’s why we will work with you to choose the equipment and service options that best align with your budget, and we will strive to get the job done right the first time. We have served customers in both Minnesota and Wisconsin for decades, and our staff is passionate about helping families like yours get better, safer water.
If you’re ready to learn more about the services we provide, and how we can help you get better water in your home, please fill out one of our online forms, or call us at 888-741-9025 today!