Home Improvement

Hard Water Disadvantages and the Pros and Cons of Getting a Water Softener

Hard water is a common problem in homes, and luckily, technology has provided efficient ways to solve this problem. Hard water is basically water that has dissolved salts of magnesium and calcium, and this makes the water hard. It also contains chlorides, sulphates, bicarbonates and in worse cases, ferrous iron which can turn your clothes and dishes brown and also discolor your teeth. From the sound of these minerals, you can see that they can be very harmful, and even annoying, when in large quantities, and this is why hard water is not ideal for domestic use. Although science tells us that drinking hard water is healthy to drink because it contains calcium and magnesium, when these are in large quantities, they are far from healthy. That is why it is advisable to purchase an efficient water softening system. I got myself a Fleck water softener because it is highly effective and easy to use. With a water softener, you have no problems with hard water.

Disadvantages of hard water are:

  1. Clogged pipes:

You would end up with clogged pipes which would eventually burst if you don’t notice it early. The minerals in the water would form a coating of lime scale inside the pipes, and this would clog the pipes leading to low water pressure. If you don’t notice this early, the pipes would finally burst. Hard water also causes pipes to suffer corrosion and rusts, and so you would have to frequently fix or replace your pipes. This is obviously costly, and so buying a water softening system would fix this problem immediately.

 2. Damaged Water Appliances

When you use hard water, because of the build-up of lime scale, you would end up with damaged dishwashers, washing machines, coffee makers, showers and showerheads. The lime scale would eventually cause the appliances to get damaged and then you would have to fix or replace them frequently. When you wash dishes with a dishwasher, the minerals in the water add spots or stains to your dishes. When using a washing machine, you end up with faded or unclean clothes. The minerals in the hard water combine with the dirt on clothes, and this stains your clothes permanently. With boilers, lime scale would also cause the boilers to become less efficient which would lead to high electricity bills. Your electricity bills can increase as high as twenty five percent more than the usual price. After a while, you would eventually have to buy another boiler because it would get damaged.

  3. No Lather

When you use hard water with soap to wash, you would not have a soap lather or it would take a while before you can work up a quick lather. Although you might think that you need to change your soap, it is actually the fault of the hard water. Soft water on the other hand, gives out a lot of lather when you’re washing with soap.

 4. Adverse Effects on Hair and Skin

When you wash your hair with hard water, your locks or tresses would eventually have a hint of red, and this would not remove when you wash it. You would have to go a salon to treat your hair. You would also end up with dry hair. When you bath with hard water, you can also get irritated and dry skin. The minerals in the hard water would be left behind on your skin and it makes your skin rough and dry. Hard water also would not remove any bacteria on your skin and so this would end up being harmful to your skin.

When you use a water softener, you get to avoid all these dreadful disadvantages. Although there are pros and cons of water softeners, the pros outweigh the cons and water softeners eventually provide you with healthy, clean soft water. You can purchase less expensive water softeners so that you can avoid high costs, and you can also look out for water softeners which also filter out any dirt or bacteria from the water. Although water softeners require constant maintenance, it does not take time and it is worth it because of the many benefits that soft water brings.

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Water Softener Regeneration: How Does It Work?

Hard water is tough on your hair, skin, tools and your pocket. Water softeners are there to annihilate this problem. This will extend the life of boilers, heaters and eradicate rusting.

Soft water helps in:

  • Easy cleaning
  • No stains on tiles and tubs
  • Less water consumption
  • Smooth hair and clear skin
  • Reduced energy bills
  • Increased Lifespan of Appliances
  • Bright clothes

Water Softener Mechanism:

People misconceive that salts purify water but it is the dense resin bed which does the job. They filter chemicals and minerals from hard water. Salts are utilized during the regeneration cycle for a continuous process.

In brief, this is what water softeners do:

  1. Hard water enters from the pipe and travels through the resin bed.
  2. Resin beads attract impurities and ion exchange process takes place.
  3. Now soft water is supplied to the entire home.

The Regeneration Process:

Water softener regeneration is when water present in the pipe is recirculated. It not necessarily installed in every water softener but it has many benefits attached to it.

There are many hookups which are connected to the water supply of your home like ion exchange process. Water flow back is extended during the regeneration cycle via an extended water loop. This loop extends soft water flow via softener. It helps in preventing rust and impurities.

Sodium ions are exchanged with minerals of hard water i.e. calcium and magnesium. After sometime resin beads have to get rid of the minerals and get recharged. Here is where a regeneration cycle work begins:

  1. A strong salt solution is added to the softener. This solution is known as brine and stored in the brine tank.
  2. Brine flows through resin beads and collects the minerals that are collected through the water softening.
  3. This brine solution containing hard water flushes out from the drain pipe.
  4. Resin beads are now renewed and ready for the next process of water softening.

How long a Regeneration Cycle takes place?

The regeneration cycle usually takes 10 to 30 minutes for a set to complete. This depends on your piping system. Hence it is recommended to commence this course when water is not used at home, especially at night.

Water Softener Lifespan:

As per quality water softeners can last up to 20 years. For efficient working and optimal use, of proper maintenance is required.

Do you know water quality also affects the softening system? More minerals will use more salts and will situate pressure on the system and degradation will be early. This is vice versa if water is less hard. That is why it is recommended to conduct a water test before the installation.

ALSO READ – Hard Water Disadvantages and the Pros and Cons of Getting a Water Softener

Why Backwash Cycle is Imperative?

Backwash cycle is an important part of water softeners. This set helps in removing dirt and grime from the primary tank. This improves water flow and quality.

How to Manually Regenerate?

Your water softening machinery comes with knobs that can be turned to start the regeneration cycle. It depends on which model you have. Check before you install.

Conclusion:

If you are missing a crucial step of regenerating then notice the signs like smelly water or color difference. This means pipe have impurities stick to it. Later issues may arise so to improve quality and remove contaminants then get it changed.

 

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