Every year, unsafe water kills more people than all violent crimes combined. Thankfully, most Americans have access to safe water.
Despite the relative safety of American water sources, some citizens worry about the softness or hardness of their water. Although the World Health Organization claims there is no evidence of adverse health effects caused by hard water, it comes down to personal preference for some people.
Installing a water softener is a simple solution to solving a hard water problem. To learn more about water softeners, check out the information below.
What Is Hard Water?
The main purpose of purchasing and installing a water softener is to combat hard water. Some areas of the United States likely have soft water, while others have hard. People living in New England, some of the Southeast, the Pacific Northwest, and the Gulf states are among the lucky few in soft water regions.
Most Americans receive hard water. This water is characterized by a greater mineral content — namely, calcium, magnesium carbonates, magnesium bicarbonates, and magnesium sulfates. Some health officials claim that ingesting hard water may circumvent the need for some supplements, like calcium.
What Is a Water Softener?
A water softener is a filtration system that eliminates the minerals found in hard water, transforming it into soft water. It mostly targets calcium and magnesium.
A water softener has three parts: the brine tank, the mineral tank, and the control valve. These parts often look like a few slim tanks and take up some space. They are ideally located in the garage, away from common areas.
How Does It Work?
A water softener uses the scientific process of ion exchange to remove calcium and magnesium from hard water. This process is similar to how magnets work — both calcium and magnesium are positively charged molecules, while the resin beads in a water softener are negatively charged. The negative resin beads attract the positive minerals, pulling them out of the water as it moves through the filtration system.
Is It Necessary?
Purchasing and installing a water softener is not necessary for human survival. It is necessary, however, for the survival of pipes and appliances. Hard water and its minerals deposit cake up and create hard scales throughout pipes and appliances.
You may be wondering, “How do I find the right size water softener I need?” That depends on how much water you use. Multiply your daily water usage by the grains of hardness to calculate how many grains need to be removed per day.
Buying and Installing a Water Softener
Purchasing a water softener involves doing some research based on your budget and your needs. Installing a water softener requires help from a professional. This filtration system isn’t cheap, but the investment will save you a lot of money replacing appliances and pipes that deteriorated too quickly.
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