There are basically four different types of water softeners on the market. Salt-free, reverse osmosis, ion exchange and magnetic. The most popular design is a salt-free unit, which relies on a filter (no salt or chemicals) to clean the water. These designs work well, but they are not recommended for homes that are dealing with extreme hard water issues. Reverse osmosis units use a semi-permeable membrane to remove impurities in the water.
This type of design removes up to 98% of impurities – and is ideal for the household who wants their tap water both delicious and mineral-free. An ion exchange design literally exchanges the ions in the water with potassium or sodium ions. This type of design removes the minerals that cause hard water and will help remove the detrimental impact on fixtures and appliances. However, the high sodium levels involved make it impractical for drinking water.
Magnetic softeners position magnetics in or around water pipes to alter the water’s chemical makeup. But the water will revert back to its original hardness within 48 hours after passing through the magnetic field. Let the experienced plumbers at Mater Services recommend the ideal type of water softener for your home.