If you observed visible stains, residues, or noticeable watermarks on your bathroom and sinks, you probably have a problem with your water. Containing large amounts of minerals such as magnesium and calcium, hard water can cause any household problems.
On the brighter side, there is a solution to solve this problem: having a quality water softener installed in your home.
Having a water softener can positively help some of the most important functions in your home. From increasing the lifespan of your plumbing and appliances that directly use water, to even lowering your water costs. Additionally, it can also affect the overall quality of your water supply.
Before you decide what kind of water softener you should purchase, there are a lot of distinctions and features that you have to consider. For you to determine which one is best for your uses, you must take a look at the pros and cons of each type.
What are Salt-Free Water Descalers and Conditioners?
Salt-Free Water Conditioner or “Descalers”, “Scale Reducer” or “Salt-Free Softener” does a process of binding the minerals instead of removing the excess hard minerals in your water. Through this method, the Salt-Free Water Conditioner strips your water of scale.
It utilizes a process called “Template Assisted Crystallization” where it converts hard minerals into ones that will not stick to any surface in your home which includes appliances, sinks, and corners.
For human bodies, a few hard minerals are beneficial. With this, Salt-Free Water Conditioners work at helping households solve avoidable problems caused by scale build-up without completely removing the healthy minerals from your source of water.
Using a Salt-Free Water Conditioner in your house, these crystals will not stick to the surfaces and pipes like regular hard minerals. Instead, you’ll be left with a house that’s free from the stress of scrubbing heavily stained surfaces, damaged appliances, and clogged pipes.
Referred to as “conditioners”, it does not “soften” your water as it only neutralizes. Since it uses a type of system that does not filter any materials, it doesn’t require the removal of captured debris. It is environment-friendly and maintenance-free, making it one of the best investments to have in every household.
What Are Salt-Based Water Softeners?
Turning “hard water” into “soft water”, also known as ion exchange, is a process involved in a Salt-Based Water Softener. They are designed to remove minerals from your water that are “hardness-causing”.
Salt-Based Water Softeners use a mechanism that swaps mineral ions for sodium ones; hence, it removes the damaging hard minerals from your drinking water. Simply put, it utilizes sodium to reduce mineral concentrations such as magnesium and calcium that would, consequently, put damage on your appliances, body, and plumbing.
People tend to misunderstand Salt-Based Water Softeners, thinking that it increases their drinking water’s sodium content to an extent that it would be harmful to their system and household. The amount it adds to the water is insignificant.
As a result, you’ll notice that your laundry washer can clean your clothes better, making it appear brighter and cleaner. Additionally, you’ll notice that your skin and hair no longer feels itchy and uncomfortable. Other benefits include little to no scale buildup in surfaces and appliances.
However, almost all Salt-Based Softeners are on the costly side, compared to its Salt-Free Conditioner cousin. Moreover, it also seeks regular maintenance. Maintenance requires you to set up the initial timing parameters, and refill the blocks of salt every month.
Salt-Based Softeners are best used when it comes to households that have high levels of harm-causing minerals in their water.
Which One Is Better?
Ultimately, it depends on your needs and preferences. Experts would advise that if the water hardness in your household falls below 25 grains-per-gallon hardness levels, then, having a Salt-Free Water Conditioner may give the solution most of your worries.
If you think that having a low-maintenance, environmentally friendly efficient machine, choosing the Salt-Free Conditioner should be your option. On the downside, you’ll be giving up that “soft” water feeling in exchange for solving the scale build-up in your pipes and appliances.
Moreover, Salt-Free Conditioners may also have a drawback such as it not being able to work effectively against contaminants such as chlorine and lead. For this, experts suggest having a type of filtration system in front of the media not to foul up.
However, if your home’s water hardness level reaches above 25 grains-per-gallon, acquiring a Salt-Based Softener might be the better option. Also, wanting water that feels “soft” and “light” also points to having a Salt-Based Water Softener.
Having a salt-based water softener allows you to have that “slick” feeling in your baths and you will observe that the soap can produce more bubbles, giving you the impression that it is “cleaner”. This is because there are no more hard minerals that cause your skin to become dry.
What Other Things Should I Consider?
Before installing a system in your household, you should always consider the size first. Having a salt-based water softener that’s too small might result in a limited supply of softened water in your home, further providing a low water pressure. Having a bulky one can also be problematic.
Most importantly, it’s necessary to confront the confusion that the physical size of the water softener is what’s important. It should be the softening capacity of the system that you should be concerned about when it comes to determining the system’s efficiency in your home.
To determine, you should pay attention to a few key factors. First, you should take note of your household’s water hardness measure. Next, determine the average amount of water usage that your home uses, and lastly, seek advice on your daily softening requirement. Choosing which type of system to install in your homes may not be an easy task. However, once you’ve finally decided which type suits your home more, the benefits will surely reap both comfort and ease.