Water softening salt is a popular choice for people who want to reduce the hardness of their drinking water. It’s also a good option when you want to remove excess salts and minerals from your water. However, if you have a well and don’t need to soften your water that often, then it might not be worth the cost. When used as part of an automatic home system, it can also help reduce your monthly water bill. Because of its high concentration of sodium chloride and a smaller concentration of other minerals such as calcium or magnesium, this type of salt is commonly called table salt or commercial salt. This article explains how it works, how much you need, and whether there are any disadvantages to using it instead of regular household salt (aka grocery store brand).
Can You Use Water Softener Salt To Melt Ice?
Not really, water softener salt is not meant to be used as a tool to melt ice. While it may work in smaller areas, it’s not really recommended to use it on a large scale. Water softener salt is meant to reduce the amount of calcium and magnesium in water, which makes it easier for the water to flow through the system. While this may help to melt ice, it’s not really meant for that purpose.
How Does A Salt Softener Work?
- The first stage of a salt softener is an ion exchange tank. This tank contains resin beads that attract the minerals in hard water and replace them with sodium ions.
- The second stage is the brine tank, which contains a solution of sodium chloride (salt). Water flows from the ion exchange tank through the brine tank, where it’s saturated with salt and can no longer hold onto any additional minerals.
- The third stage is a mixing valve where the “clean” water exits and goes to your faucets or appliances, while the salty water passes through a bypass to drain out of your home.
What Are The Advantages Of Using A Water Softener?
When people talk about drinking water, they often think about drinking bottled water because it is viewed to be healthier. However, this might not always be the case. New research conducted at the University of Utah found that water in the US is not consistently being disinfected when being delivered to homes. This makes it possible for pathogenic organisms to be present in the water, even though it appears to be safe. Many of these organisms are parasites that can cause diseases, including cysts and bacteria that can cause Legionnaires’ disease and cryptosporidiosis. By using a water softener, you remove minerals and harmful bacteria from the water, which can positively impact your health.
Savings on Water Costs
Soft water is not only safer to drink, but it also costs less to produce. Let’s say that you have a family of four and one person, in particular, is a heavy water drinker. You will soon see that you are spending a lot on water bills each month. If you have a water softener, you can keep some of the water in your house and reduce the need for water outside your home. This can result in significant savings in water costs each month.
Protection Against Iron Deficiency Anemia
Iron deficiency is a serious health condition that can cause anemia and other complications. Using a water softener can protect you from this by ensuring that your water contains adequate amounts of iron. Iron is an essential mineral that helps your body produce hemoglobin, which is essential for carrying oxygen to your cells. Iron is present in every living creature, but it can be destroyed easily inside the water due to chlorination and other processes that are common in water utilities.
Reduced Pesticide Resistance
When you have water that is softened, you can use it for crops or during the gardening season. If you have a water softener, you can lessen the risk of pesticide resistance by using the water for crops or gardening. Pesticide resistance occurs when pests develop a resistance to pesticides that are sprayed over crops. Pesticides are typically not harmful to humans, but they can cause damage to crops. When your plants are exposed to water that has been softened with a water softener, it dilutes the pesticides and makes them less effective.
Smoother Running Faucet and Shower Heads
Since water contains minerals that build up on the internal components of your water system over time, you might experience issues with your faucet and shower heads. A water softener will remove these minerals and make them work more efficiently. This can save you money on repairs and maintenance by extending the lifespan of your components.
Even if you do not have a health condition that requires you to get your water from a water softener, you can enjoy the beautification benefits. A water softener can remove minerals such as calcium and magnesium that build up on your landscape over time. This includes your lawn, shrubs, and plants. It also removes trace amounts of sodium from the water, which is required for plant growth.
Future-Proofing Your Investment
Like many things in life, water will eventually become more expensive. When this happens, you can still rely on your water softener to provide you with a constant supply of safe drinking water.
Installed Maintenance Cost Discount
Many people are afraid that they will have to replace their water softener once it is no longer working. However, this is simply not the case. If you have one that is installed properly and is not being used by a lot of people, then you can expect it to last for at least 10 years. If you want to continue enjoying the benefits while significantly reducing the cost of owning one, you should consider changing it every 10 years. This means that you will have to change it twice, which will result in a significant discount compared to buying a new one.
What Are the Disadvantages Of Using A Water Softener?
1. Water Softeners are Expensive
Water softeners are expensive. They can cost anywhere from $300 to $1000, depending on the size and what features they have. You will also have to pay additional money for maintenance, replacement parts, and installation.
3. They are Not Ideal for All People
While water softeners can be used by anyone, they are not ideal for certain situations. If you live in a rural area that has a lot of minerals in the water, then you will not need one. Also, if your water has too much sodium in it already, then you will want to reconsider buying one of these systems as well.
3. It Can Cause Damage to Your Appliances
If your water softener is not maintained properly or installed correctly, it can cause damage to your appliances and fixtures such as toilets and faucets. This is because it is removing minerals that they need in order to function properly. If you notice any issues with these items after installing a water softener, then you should get in touch with an expert right away so that they can solve the problem as soon as possible before causing more damage or requiring more work on your part later on down the road.
4. It Can Cause Damage to Your Hair and Skin
One of the biggest problems many people have with soft water is that it can damage their hair and skin. If you notice that your hair is getting frizzy or falling out more than normal, then you should consider switching back to regular water for a few weeks to see if this makes a difference. If your skin is dry or flaky, then you will also want to try using regular water for a while to see if this helps.
Water softeners are useful when you have hard water from a well or other source. They can reduce the number of minerals in your water and help prevent damage to your appliances, such as your dishwasher or washing machine. They are also beneficial for people with low budgets and who want to save money on their water bills. But they do require some maintenance and don’t provide water without any minerals, so you’ll also need to run a separate cleaning water line. Water softeners can also be harmful if they contain sodium or calcium. You should also always follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer when using a water softener.