Make hard water soft with water softeners
As we all know the water we use to wash our clothes, dishes and ourselves can be divided into two categories: hard and soft. Although hard water and soft water can be drunk safely, hard water contains magnesium and calcium, two minerals that can stain our dishes and clothes even if we wash them very well. More than that, hard water can affect the durability and functionality of the water fixtures and pipes, thus making you spend a lot of money to replace them.
Water softeners are used to remove calcium and magnesium ions and replace them with a chemical or a mineral such as potassium or sodium that is compatible with soap. That is why soft water does not stain your clothes and dishes. More than that it prevents builds up occurs inside the pipes.
All the action takes place inside the water softener. The water that gets into your house through a bed of small plastic beads; this bed of small plastic beads is usually covered with potassium and sodium. When the water passes over the beads, the sodium ions replace the magnesium and calcium ions.
During time, calcium and magnesium in the water cover the plastic beads. That is why you have to flush the beads with brine, a solution that contains a lot of sodium. All the residual sodium, magnesium and calcium ions are removed, thus regenerating the plastic beads.
Testing the water
Before answering this question, you should know that water hardness may range from less than 1gpg to more than 10.5gpg. If the water in your house contains more than 7.1gpg, you will need a water softener.
If you want to find out the mineral content of the water that gets into your house, you can test it or you can ask the help of your local supplier to test it for you.
If you have water from a well or from a local supplier that does not use a water treatment, you probably have hard water.
Disadvantages of using water softeners
When the magnesium and calcium ions are replaced with sodium, salt is also added. If you have a high blood pressure, a kidney disease or you are on a salt-free diet, water softeners can affect your health. In order to avoid damaging your health, install a water line to make the water you drink stop from getting through the water softener; the water will run straight to the tap.
As we have mentioned before, softened water contains a large amount of sodium. Consequently, you cannot use it to water your garden or lawn.