A Water Softener is a device that is used to treat hard water. Hard water is water that contains dissolved minerals such as calcium and magnesium. The problem with hard water is that these minerals precipitate out of the water and form scale in pipes and spots on dishes and shower doors. They also react with soap and detergents reducing their ability to lather. A true water softener works by replacing the calcium and magnesium ions with sodium ions.
A Water Softener, removes hardness minerals from the water by a process called ion exchange. Calcium and magnesium ions are exchanged for sodium ions. These sodium ions do not cause scale or react with soaps and detergents. The water is passed through a bed of resin beads containing sodium ions. As the hard water is passed through, the calcium and magnesium ions are swapped for the sodium ions. The water softener recharges the resin beads by flushing them with a strong salt solution which washes away the collected calcium and magnesium ions and replaces them with sodium. The regeneration schedule depends on the type of valve unit that the water softener has. A timed unit will regenerate after a set number of days have passed. A metered unit will monitor the amount of water that has been used and regenerate after a set amount.
Salt Free Water Softener Alternative
Due to environmental concerns about brine water discharge, some communities have regulated the use of water softeners or banned them altogether. Some people with sodium restricted diets may have also been advised by their doctors not to use a water softener. This has led to the development of salt free alternatives to conventional water softeners. While not a true “water softener” these units provide some of the benefits of a water softener such as scale reduction without adding sodium to the water or discharging brine into the environment.
The Soft and Pure Salt Free System utilizes a bed of catalytic media to transform the hardness minerals into tiny crystals that wont stick and form scale on shower doors, pipes, and appliances. It’s environmentally friendly design uses no electricity and does not waste water by regenerating.