Why Get A Water Softener?
Slowly but surely, dissolved minerals in unconditioned water can erode some of the everyday pleasures of home living. These problems could easily be eliminated with the addition of a new water treatment system.
What Does A Water Softener Do?
These systems exchange sodium for calcium and magnesium to “soften” water. They boost water’s cleaning ability and reduce minerals that cause appliance breakdown. They are effective for removing some metals, such as iron, manganese, and radium.
Softening systems are not effective for removing unwanted organic chemicals, tastes and odors. Added sodium may not be desired for those on a restricted sodium diet. Systems usually condition the entire home water supply, not just the 1-2% used for drinking and cooking.
A water softener is not a water filter, it does not remove dirt or chlorine. Simply explained, a water softener converts dirty chlorinated hard water into dirty chlorinated salty water. Water softening systems can waste thousands of gallons of water every year. Every time a water softener regenerates or back flushes, it flushes a salty waste into the sewer system and waste water with high concentrations of sodium and potassium chlorides cannot be recycled or reused. (life source)
Water softeners and water conditioners remove the hardness minerals that are known to interfere with the effectiveness of soaps and detergents. They do this with a process of ion exchange, which replaces the hardness minerals of calcium and magnesium with sodium. The resulting water is better for bathing and laundering but it was not improved for drinking. Some consider that its quality is lessened for drinking because of the addition of sodium. So-called water conditioners are glorified, overpriced water softeners, which may have a small amount of activated carbon added to the system. Because all of the house water is treated by the conditioner the carbon loses its effectiveness in a short time.
How Does A Water Softener Work?
Water softeners use a complicated process called ion exchange to treat water. Water softeners swap electrically charged particles of salt for calcium and magnesium minerals naturally present in the water. Water first enters the home from the water main and directly flows to a brine tank filled with tiny sodium charged plastic beads. When the magnesium and calcium ions contact a bead, they are attracted to each other like magnets. A sodium particle is released into the water and the healthy calcium or magnesium particle takes its place on the bead. New salt or potassium chloride must be added to the brine tank on a regular basis to replace the salt or potassium chloride that is used to regenerate the mineral tank.