Hard water is a fact of life in Texas. Even though the US Geological Survey says eighty-five percent of American homes have hard water, that number is even higher in our area. You can live with it. Or, you can manage it with a water softener.
A water softener cures hard water
“Hard water” comes from dissolved minerals such as calcium, magnesium carbonate and manganese found in aquifers. Water containing over three point five grains per gallon of dissolved minerals is considered hard. More than ten point five is extremely hard.
Simple chemistry in a water softener
A water softener removes minerals through ion exchange. It’s simple chemistry: calcium and magnesium carry a positive charge. As water passes through, calcium and magnesium cling to negatively charged polystyrene beads in a water softener’s tank. That allows the less positively charged sodium to be displaced. The sodium then bonds to the water, softening it.
Water softener regeneration
The calcium and magnesium accumulated in a water softener needs to be cleansed from your system periodically through regeneration. Ideally, your system should go about three days between these cycles.
An added water softener benefit
Clear pipes and prolonged appliance life are the long term benefits of getting a water softener. The more immediate benefit is more obvious. Instead of first softening water to do its work, soap performs better. You’ll use less and feel cleaner with a water softener.