We’ve discovered something interesting over the years: most people are really afraid to treat themselves. What we mean by this is the idea of buying something to improve their quality of life. Such people usually draw a line in the sand and figure out which side a new purchase falls on. Is it a necessity that they absolutely have to have? Or is it a luxury, which usually translates to “I’m better off saving my money.” This debate is especially keen when it comes to buying a water softener system.
Those who use water softeners will tell you in a heartbeat: this is absolutely a necessity because it provides clear, quality water for you to drink whenever you need. However, others are on the fence because they have questions about both hard water and how water softeners work. Don’t worry, though: we’ve put together a comprehensive guide with all of the information you need!
Hard Water and Soft Water Differences
The goal of a water softener system is to soften hard water. Unfortunately, many people do not understand what the differences between hard water and soft water is and why it is important to know.
Hard water is water that has a lot of dissolved minerals in it. That means that when you’re drinking it, you’re not just drinking water—you may be drinking unhealthy amounts of things like calcium and magnesium.
By contrast, soft water is water that has been specially treated. The result? The only ion that remains in the water is sodium. And those dissolved minerals we mentioned earlier? They’re no longer in the picture.
Sometimes, people don’t fully appreciate why hard water is a bad thing. After all, the name sounds pretty innocent, right? However, hard water can cause an entire range of problems for your health and the health of your major appliances.
We’ll cover those specific problems in a minute. Right now, though, it’s important to understand that hard water is costing you health, money, and time that you simply cannot afford to lose!
How a Water Softener System Works
By now, you may have a pretty simple question: just how does the water softener work, anyway? We’re happy to explain, but you may want to take out a pen and paper, because we’re about to do some science!
Like we said earlier, hard water is caused by a buildup of dissolved minerals. So a water softener works by a process of “ion exchange” in which these harmful minerals are traded for something harmless, like sodium.
A good water softener has a mineral tank filled with negatively charged beads. When hard water comes through the tank, these beads will catch the calcium and magnesium coming through because those minerals have a positive charge.
So, once in the mineral tank, the hard water loses those harmful ions in exchange for sodium ions. Any excess salt is eventually drained out, as are the harmful amounts of calcium and magnesium.
The result? Water that is completely clean and healthy for consumption. And while the softening process may sound complex, keep in mind that all of this is automated. All you have to do is sit back and enjoy a glass (or two) of your newer, fresher water.
Why You Need a Water Softener
At this point, you may find yourself agreeing that the water softener is a really impressive invention. But nonetheless, you might ask: why are calcium and magnesium actually bad for you? And bottom line, why do I need a water softener system?
First of all, hard water is bad for the rest of your home just as it is bad for your body. It can shorten the life of your dishwasher, washer, and pretty much any other appliance that relies on water. That means that you end up having to replace these expensive appliances earlier than intended. In this way, hard water can make you spend thousands and thousands of dollars that you could otherwise save!
In addition to the appliances having shorter life spans, hard water can actually affect the output of those devices. What does that mean? The dishes from your dishwasher are going to have ugly spots on them (especially on glass and silverware), and clothes from the washer are going to look dingy and washed out.
Finally, there’s the scariest issue: in addition to consuming hard water, you’re also showering in it and bathing in it. This can have a series of negative effects on your body, including your hair and skin drying out.
Investing in a water softener system is about more than investing in your health (although we like to think that would be enough). It’s also about investing in a better quality of life for you and your family. Just think: the only thing standing between you and a healthier body, brighter clothes, and cleaner dishes is the addition of a water softener!
We started out with a pretty simple question: is a water softener system a luxury or a necessity? By now, we hope you can see why this product is absolutely a necessity for your home.
The reason behind this is simple: clean water itself is not a luxury. If you are regularly consuming tainted water, then it’s not just an inconvenience. You may be putting yourself at risk of contracting a number of short-term and even long-term health issues.
In addition to harming your health, the use of hard water is sabotaging all of the appliances in your home. If you worry that a water softener system is a “luxury” that will cost too much money, then rest assured that it will cost far more to replace your dishwasher and clothes washer.
Ultimately, a water softener is the best kind of purchase: it’s an investment that will only grow in value over time. Factor in how clean water is going to improve your health and save your appliances, and this is a purchase that will end up saving you money each and every year. And on top of that, you’ll have the convenience of life’s simplest pleasure: clear, clean, and refreshing water!