Should You Choose A Water Softener Or Conditioner?

Do you have hard water? If you notice mineral deposits in and around your plumbing fixtures, or if your hair seems limp and dull no matter how well you wash it, hard water is likely to blame. Fortunately, there are options to soften the water and remove the mineral impurities. There are two main types of systems for this task -- the water softener and the water conditioner. The following can help you determine which is best for your needs.

Conditioning versus Softening

A true water softening system uses salt to create an ionic exchange, where hard minerals like calcium exchange places with salt molecules in a holding tank. This does result in a slight increase in sodium in the water, but it's generally undetectable without testing. Conditioning doesn't use salt or ionic exchange. Generally, this method relies on a filtration system of some sort to catch hard minerals as they flow into your home.


There are three main concerns with softening water using salt. Some people can notice that slightly salty flavor in the water, which is difficult to filter out since salt dissolves so well. This means drinking water must come from a tap not connected to the softening system, or bottled water must be brought in for drinking. The other issue is that there is some wastewater that results from softening. This is because the water that contains the flushed out mineral elements is disposed of through the sewer system instead of being routed into your taps. This can be a concern in areas with water shortages and drought. Salt systems also require ongoing maintenance to continue operating correctly.

Conditioning's main issue is that it simply isn't as effective for all purposes. While conditioning can remove the majority of minerals for water moving through the system, calcium and limescale tend to still accumulate in holding tanks, such as your water heater, where the water sits for long periods of time.

Making the decision

A water softener may be a good choice in an area with minimal drought concerns where water tends to collect in holding tanks before use. Otherwise, a conditioning system can be the better option since it requires almost no maintenance beyond filter changes and is reliable for most uses. Since the hot water tank is the main holding unit for water in the average home, you could also switch to tankless water heaters to solve the main issue one would encounter with a conditioning system. Talk to a water service like Olympic Springs Bottled Water for more help.

About Me

Troubleshooting Business Every Day

Do you remember the last time you started thinking about what you wanted to do with your life? I didn't think that I would be in a position to think about creating my own business, but here I am. I always wanted to be free with work, which is probably one of the reasons I started thinking about making a solid company. Although I haven't started the business quite yet, I have found it really cathartic to think about how things could play out in the future. Read more on my blog about business and troubleshooting your company each and every day.



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