Various minerals naturally occur in your home’s water, and hard water is classified by having a high mineral content, primarily consisting of calcium and magnesium. The high or low measurement of these two main minerals typically contribute to your home’s water hardness level. A water softener, if properly maintained, removes the calcium and magnesium in exchange for sodium or potassium chloride. Make sure to have your water tested, and contact your city directly to learn more about how and where your water is sourced and its hardness level.
If you’re thinking about installing a water softener in your home, use this quick list to help you make the best decision for your needs.
Advantages of home water softening:
- Helps keep skin softer and hair softer and stronger after bathing, while reducing the amount of cleanser and moisturizers needed
- Cleaner and softer clothing, towels and bedding, with a significant reduction in the amount of laundry detergent needed and prolonging the use
- Reduces or prevents mineral spots on glassware, flatware, kitchen sinks and faucets
- Reduces or prevents mineral spots and soap scum on glass shower walls and bathroom sinks and faucets
- Reduces or prevents scale build-up on shower heads and faucets
- Lengthens the life of some appliances like dishwashers, washing machines and hot water heaters
- Potentially reduce your water consumption and water bill because soft water reacts more efficiently with a smaller amount of soap that lathers better and washes away easier for less cleaning time and water usage
- You can choose to only soften what you need to – showers, sinks, dishwashers and laundry hook-ups, as well as only softening the hot water; Toilets, hose bibs and other cold water fixtures typically don’t need to be connected
When you ponder the many benefits of installing a water softener system, you also need to take into account the reality of installation cost, regular maintenance costs, monthly salt or potassium chloride pellet costs, the difference to each person in taste of soft water, the environment and health.
Living in Minnesota means we all deal with dry environments, whether at home, work or out and about. Raising your thermostat on cold days and experiencing low humidity during the winter and spring climate unfortunately leads to dryer air. The dry air combined with hard water can cause drier, flaky and itchy skin and hair. For this reason alone, I think a water softener is worth its weight in gold.