Common Myths And Things People Get Wrong About Water Softeners

With more than 25 years experience in the residential and commercial water treatment space, Terry is a WQA (Water Quality Association) certified water specialist, LEVEL 3, as well as a WQA certified sales representative.  Terry currently sits on EcoWater Systems (a Berkshire Hathaway Company) national Peers committee, as a water treatment expert advising other water professionals with less experience on best trade and technology practices. EcoWater Systems of Nebraska is one of the biggest water treatment and water delivery businesses in the state.   

Water softeners and water conditioners can be a massive convenience in the home. Unfortunately, there are also many myths about water treatment that can lead homeowners to make the wrong purchase decision.  SONY DSC

For those without knowledge of water softeners, these myths and misconceptions are difficult to analyze. We at EcoWater Systems of Nebraska believe you deserve the proper information, and are here to set the record straight on some of the most common myths about water softeners and water conditioners. 

Water Softeners Create Salty Water 

It is easy to see how this myth developed, as sodium is used in many water softener/ water conditioner devices. These devices use softener salts in the process of ion exchange, but this doesn’t mean that your water ends up tasting salty.

Inside the device, there is a special media that is stored in the mineral tank. This media is charged with sodium ions to swap out magnesium, calcium, and other minerals contributing to your hard water. During this process, sodium (Na) is added to the water not regular salt (NaCl), so you shouldn’t notice any salty taste in your treated water.  

Softened Water is Unhealthy 

There is a great deal of health information about reducing our salt intake, and given the added sodium in softened water, many people assume softened water is unhealthy. The amount of sodium added to drinking water depends on the water hardness, but even the hardest water only requires a minimal amount of sodium. The amount of sodium contained in softened water is so small it is unlikely to have a negative health impact. According to the Mayo Clinic, the added sodium from softened water should be no issue for “most healthy adults.” 

Water Softeners/ Water Conditioners Purify the Water 

Water softeners/water conditioners are designed to specifically reduce water hardness. They perform an excellent job of removing the metals and minerals that cause scale and create household issues. However, these devices do not remove all contaminants. If your water is plagued by other contaminants, you may need to pair a water softener with a reverse osmosis or filtration system.  

Healthy Minerals Are Removed During Water Softening 

Since softeners remove minerals such as magnesium and calcium, many people think that healthy minerals are being removed from their water. After all, magnesium and calcium are considered essential minerals for healthy teeth and bones. While this is true, the deposits of magnesium and calcium in hard water are inorganic. Inorganic minerals don’t provide the same health benefits as the minerals obtained from supplements or food. The cells in the body cannot absorb them easily, and as a result they are unused. Plants can transform inorganic minerals into organic compounds, so you do need to eat your vegetables, but drinking hard water is not going to improve your health.  

Water Softeners Waste Energy and Water 

While it’s true that some softener models can waste salt and water during use, but that is not true for all softener systems. Many water softeners waste little energy or water, and there even high efficiency models designed for energy efficiency. In fact, a water softener will likely help reduce your energy costs. Research has shown water using appliances such water heaters and washing machines can maintain their factory efficiency levels for years when they are supplied with soft water, helping homeowners enjoy lower energy bills and longer appliance lifespans.  

Hard water is common throughout the U.S, and it can be problematic for many. There are many choices of water softener/water conditioner devices on the market to address this problem. Speak to a water treatment professional who is fully WQA certified to ensure that your chosen device exceeds the latest industry standards.




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