Water is the essence of life, not to mention an important component of a healthy environment. The water that you drink or use must be free of germs and microbes. Chemicals shouldn't find their way into your water supply either. Contaminants in household water put cities at risk. At present, millions of people are forced to rely on hard water, which contains high concentrations of dissolved minerals. They lack access to quality water supplies, which is concerning.
What are the potential impacts of hard water?
The buildup of calcium and magnesium obstructs the water lines and plumbing, not to mention appliances. The result is that they have to work harder and operate less efficiently. The accumulations cause a great deal of trouble throughout the house. Even if some plumbing fixtures can withstand hard water buildup and corrosion, they can still get clogged by mineral deposits.
Most importantly, that buildup of dissolved minerals can harbor bacteria. The scale that forms on interior surfaces provides a breeding ground for bacteria such as Legionella. A mild form of Legionnaire's disease can lead to fever, chills, headaches, and muscle aches. What is important to remember is that hard scale formations support the growth of microbial films.
Maintaining a quality supply of water for human consumption is becoming more and more difficult. Therefore, new technological solutions have been developed and put into action. Even if you're not a professional in the water treatment industry, you'll most certainly be surprised by the recent innovations in water quality technologies to address traditional and modern threats.
Water conditioners and water softeners are used to address the issue of hardness. Attention needs to be paid to the fact that while these two technologies bear some similarities, they are completely different. If you're interested in finding out more, please continue to read. We'll try to explain how these two systems function.
What is a water conditioner and how does it work?
A water conditioner is a system that alters the chemistry of the particles in the water so that they don't build up. It's located in the household plumbing, right where the water enters the house. The water filter advances the quality of the water in your home. It doesn't remove the crystals from the water but rather prevents these crystals from scaling on pipes and other fixtures.
A water conditioner would be a good addition to your home as it's fairly simple to use. It solves the annoying problems caused by scale buildup without eliminating the healthy components from the water. The water filter doesn't use electricity or waste water in the process. The vast majority of water conditioners are salt-free systems and they are provided by reputable manufacturers. Read more on water conditioners if you want to know exactly how they eliminate the hardness minerals.
Water conditioners have varying degrees of effectiveness. This simply means that they're not all created equal. Some water filtration systems have an efficacy rate of over 90%. It's necessary to do a thorough investigation before making a purchase. Rather than trusting the claims of the manufacturer, you should test the product and see if it does a good job. It's worthwhile to read customer reviews.
What is a water softener and how does it work?
A water softener is a system that removes the minerals that create hard water. It eliminates particles such as calcium and magnesium from the water supply. A water softener is similar to a magnet in the sense that one end is positive and the other is negative. They repel each other. Minerals are positively charged molecules. As the water passes through the system, it's filled with negatively charged resin beds. Once they're full of mineral particles, they're backwashed.
Water softeners have to be installed by a professional or a licensed plumber. If you're not able to find one in your area, it's a good idea to check with the local home improvement center. Even if you're willing to take on the hard work, don't do it yourself.
For some time now, companies have been manufacturing salt-free water softeners, which ensure that the water is free from dissolved salts. There's no reason to be concerned about raising sodium levels in municipal water treatment centers. The water softeners are healthy and environmentally-friendly.
A well-maintained system should last about 20 years. The type of maintenance that is required depends largely on the hard water in your area, the levels of iron in your water, not to mention the pH level. Generally speaking, a water softener doesn't entail high maintenance.
Deciding between a water conditioner and a water softener
There are advantages and disadvantages to both water filtration systems. Water conditioners and water softeners work in different ways and, of course, offer different results. It's necessary to evaluate the features of each system and decide how they can apply to your situation. We would recommend installing a water conditioner because it's energy-efficient and doesn't require a separate drain. Moreover, it can remove chlorine, chloramines, and other unwanted compounds.
The biggest mistake that you can make is to use these two systems in tandem. If you use a water conditioner before a water softener, it will make the latter ineffective. The opposite is true as well. Opt for one or the other.
If you're not quite sure what water filtration system your home can best accommodate, reach out to a professional. An expert will tell you what kind of treatment your water needs and offer targeted recommendations. What you must understand is that there's no simple answer. Not every system is suitable for every household. However, you must be proactive and make improvements on your water.
Right now, water filtration is a mature technology that's being adopted worldwide. To meet ever-growing demands, new technological solutions are being developed and deployed. Simple in operation, ensuring high reliability, and reducing operating costs, these technologies make a real impact on water quality. Even if the quality of the household water is compromised, something can be done about it.