Hard water: how to solve it

In a recent post we discussed the problems that you may have with your water when you have a well. Hard water is a common condition here in New England, and to solve this problems you have to install a softener system.

Salt Water Softener Wise Home Building
Water Softener System (with the salt tank in the left side)

Waster treatment systems also have a lot of other functions. There are multiple systems by which water treatment systems companies can remove contaminants and the hardness from water:

  • Point of entry systems:¬†they are able to treat all of the water entering a home and are installed after a water meter or storage tank – you can install after your pump filter, for example, inside a mechanical room (if you have available space).
  • Point of use systems:¬†used where people directly access the water, like a kitchen sink or a shower head.

Specialized companies perform several different types of water treatment, such as treating hardness with water softeners and removing pollutants. They can also be treated by ionic exchange and granular active carbon.

Hard water treatment

Water softening by definition is the process to remove calcium and magnesium from the water through a process called ion exchange using a polymer resin bed which gives off a sodium particle in exchange for hardness minerals. You need salt on the system to do it, and that’s the most common process used (at the least expensive)

Salt based water softeners use an electronic metered valve mounted atop a fiberglass resin tank that meter water by the gallon and then run a cleaning cycle when the ion resin bed reaches a saturation point. During the cleaning cycle, the electronic valve cycles a series of back flushes to purge the hardness particulates that have been captured from the system and flush them down a drain line. The sodium is also replenished in the resin bed during the cycle and all is ready to go again.

Some systems are salt-free, and doesn’t remove the naturally occurring healthy minerals such as calcium and magnesium from your water. Also they don’t put excess salt waste or chemicals into your waste water or the environment. Some of theses systems are available at the internet. Salt free water softeners are actually not softeners, they are water conditioners. We don’t have experience with the use of these systems, but it seems reasonable to think about that.

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