A water softening system is used to get rid of or decrease hard water in your household water system. Hard H2O contains a lot of calcium and magnesium that cause damage to your plumbing, faucets, and home appliances that use H2O due to lime scale build up that block your pipes and shower heads.
Hard water also causes your skin to become dry and your hair to appear limp. Your laundry will also become stiff and have visible white spots of soap residue because soap does not dissolve well in hard water. Dishes and glassware that come out of the dish washer will also appear cloudy with white stains. Coffee makers and shower heaters will also require frequent servicing or replacements.
A filter can also soften and reduce hardness just like a softener but there are some differences between the two treatment systems. One system may be better than the other depending on your household conditions and budget. Softeners are more commonly used by households and commercial buildings.
A water softening system works by replacing minerals of calcium and magnesium with sodium ions that produce softer water. As H2O comes in contact with the softening beads in your softening machine, the hard ions and soft ions swap places. The sodium filled beads absorb ions from calcium and magnesium and release sodium ions that soften water.
Filters use carbon to block and remove hard minerals from your household's water supply. The liquid released by filters is then softer because the hard water minerals have been reduced or eliminated. The filter system can effectively decrease calcium, iron and other minerals from your water supply without replacing it with soft ions.
Although using sodium to soften water is more effective at reducing hardness, it also means that the water that comes out of your tap will contain a lot of sodium or salt. People with medical conditions such as heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure and kidney problems should not use softeners that use sodium to prevent making their medical conditions worse.
Regarding the cost of using a filter or softening system will depend on the size of your household, water requirements and the quality of the machine. Include the cost of a plumber for both systems as both types will require a professional plumber to install them properly. Generally, a water softening system will be cheaper than a filter system.
A filter will remove contaminants in your water aside from softening it. Some contaminants that filters can get rid of are lead, mercury, pharmaceutical drugs, pesticides, chlorine, and bacteria. A water softening system can soften water but can only remove contaminants such as heavy metals and sulphates.
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