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When Do You Need a Water Softener?

Once folks learn about what a water softener is, and what it does, the ones who are experiencing the various issues it addresses know almost immediately that it's a missing component of their well pump system. There are some very simple indications that your system has hard water, and the only definitive solution is a water softener. Without adding a softener to your system it will be impossible to remove the mineral deposits in your water causing widespread scale buildup.

Do you know if you've got hard water?

The easiest way to identify whether you have hard water is by inspecting the damage it does to your dishes, glasses and cutlery. The particles that are predominantly found in hard water are abrasive and because of this cause stains, fogginess in glasses and spots form. Spots can even appear on windows when washed with hard water and these stains remain even after thorough washing and drying.

Hard water also produces scale. As well as these mineral deposits forming on kitchen appliances (such as a kettle) it can also form within boilers and plumbing systems. This scale causes appliances to be less efficient and can clog plumbing to the extent where they become less effective at passing the water supply through them. Defective plumbing is one of the most expensive consequences of hard water.

Appliances and the like are not the only things that are affected by hard water. Hard water can cause itchy dry skin and dull hair. This is due to the increase in calcium and magnesium salts contained within the water. This leads to the effectiveness of soaps and shampoos to be vastly reduced.

Clothes and fabrics are also affected. White clothes appear grayer and most colors become faded and nowhere near as vibrant as before hard water treated them. Clothes can also feel scratchy and are not affected by washing powders.

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What are the benefits of having a water softener?

  • Save money on detergents, cleaners and other soaps

  • Improved look and feel of skin and hair without as many beauty products

  • Save your appliances, pipes, showers, sinks and all faucets from scale build-up

  • Save your appliances from breaking long before their time

  • Remove those annoying spots on glassware, dishes and other items

  • Cleaner, brighter laundry (remember what white clothes used to look like?)

So how does a water softener work?

We've discussed water softeners several times before, about what they are, what they do and how they work.

A water softener is a mechanical appliance designed to remove ions that cause the water to be "hard," - usually calcium and magnesium ions that come from surrounding rocks and soil. By removing the minerals that contribute to water hardness, the softener is actually making your water "softer."

Erica Bales