Describing how water softeners work often involve words you don’t hear very often.
Since water softeners do their work largely through chemistry you may hear the words “ion” and “ion exchange” and “resin”.
I’m going to try and make the explanation a lot simpler and straightforward because understanding how water softeners work should not be a mystery or require attending a chemistry class.
And since these appliances are important and expensive, understanding how they work is just a good thing to know.
In this tutorial I’ll explain about the water problem softeners treat (hard water) and then describe just what a water softener is anyway.
After that I’ll go into a little detail on each of the main components of a water softener so you can understand how they work.
This is a generic term that means ground water has picked up minerals from the earth such as magnesium and chalky calcium.
Water with high levels of calcium can clog pipes with mineral build up left behind as the water flows through the pipes.
Hard water also reduces the ability of soap to lather and the minerals form a sticky scum with the soap and prevent easy rinsing of anything being washed.
This includes your hair, your car and your dishes and glasses with water spots.
They all will have a white chalky scale or residue left behind with hard water.
Do you ever feel like nothing you do when you clean works?
Do you still feel dirty when you get out of the shower?
Does your hair feel dry after you wash it?
The problem may not be the soap or detergents you are using.
Your problem might be hard water.
The term, “hard water” refers to water with a high mineral content.
The most common minerals that cause water hardness are calcium and magnesium.
When these minerals end up in a Sacramento’s household’s water supply, household pipes become clogged and appliance efficiency is reduced.
Home water softener systems are machines that tap into the household water supply and filter water as it comes through to remove calcium and magnesium, the most common minerals that cause water hardness.
Softer water means less scale and soap scum buildup.
Sacramento County home water softener systems typically consist of a brine tank and the filter.
These systems are also equipped with a meter to indicate when the sodium needs to be recharged.
As water moves through the machine, calcium or magnesium ions change places with “softer” ions as they pass through the filter.
The calcium or magnesium ions stay behind, and water continues through the pipes, softened by salt.
When the water softener is depleted, it is recharged by being flushed with brine. This drives off the calcium or magnesium ions, replacing them with sodium ions.