If you are experiencing problems with your home’s water, it would be helpful to have it tested for hard mineral ions and other contaminants that might be affecting the quality of your water supply. If water has a high level of hardness, it can cause problems with plumbing, water-using appliances, skin, hair, clothes, drinks, food, and more. Fortunately, there are several methods for treating poor quality water. One of the most effective and popular water treatments that combats hard mineral contaminants is a process known as water softening.
Continue reading to learn more about water softening, including how it can help improve the taste, function, and appearance of your water.
Hard Water Facts
In order to understand more about water softening and the process used to achieve better quality water, it is helpful to learn the facts surrounding hard water. Hard water is water that contains higher traces of hard mineral ions, such as calcium, magnesium, and iron. You see, rain water is naturally soft; but once it reaches the ground, it mixes with other minerals, changing its composition. Once it seeps through the ground, it passes through soft rock, such as limestone or chalk. Here, it collects an abundance of calcium and magnesium minerals, making it hard water.
Hard water is generally measured in grains per gallon, but can also be read in parts per million (ppm) or milligrams of calcium (Ca). The more grains, the harder the water. Generally, water that contains 7 to 10.5 grains per gallon is hard, while anything less than 7 grains per gallon is considered slightly to moderately hard.
Hard water can make your water taste bad (like metal or grass), smell bad, and look dirty or cloudy. Additionally, hard water causes sediment buildup and lime scale on major appliances and plumbing fixtures, including water heaters, water softeners, plumbing pipes, washing machines, dishwashers, faucets, shower heads, and more. This buildup ultimately leads to costly repairs and replacements, as well as, impact your level of comfort.
Also known as water conditioning, water softening is a method of eliminating and abating hard mineral content in water using ion-exchanging technology. The most common method of water conditioning is an appliance called a water softener, or water conditioner. These appliances are installed in your home, usually near your water heater or boiler, and designed to remove hard mineral ions from your water before it hits any water inlet lines.
A traditional water softener requires softening salt and comes with a resin tank. In this tank, thousands of tiny resin beads that holds electrically charged ions. When the system regenerates, the beads fill up with sodium ions provided by the softening salt. This salt has to be purchased regularly and manually filled into the tank. The sodium-filled resin beads attract all the hard minerals in water as it passes through, and then trades them for the sodium ions. So by the time the water reaches the faucet, it has been softened by the ion-exchanging technology of your water softener.
Other water conditioning systems use reverse-osmosis, chelation technology, lime softening, and additional similar precipitation strategies. There are several make and model water conditioners on the market, but as for traditional salt-based units, the above process is what you can expect. There are also salt-free water softeners, electromagnetic water softeners, magnetic water softeners, and more.
Indianapolis Soft Water Assistance
Call our water purification experts at 317-749-0949 for help with water softening services in Indianapolis and its surrounding locations. We are licensed master plumbers with decades of experience in the soft water industry. We offer honest and professional soft water sales, service, and repair for water purification, water filtration, water softeners, reverse osmosis, and much more.