Traditional home water softeners are easily installed and very easy to maintain. At present there are many brands and four types of home water softeners on the market:
• Salt-Free Water Softeners-Prolongs the life of pipes and appliances, but not recommended for drinking
• Salt-Based Water Softeners-Not recommended for drinking or watering plants
• Reverse Osmosis-Not recommend for drinking, cooking, or plants
• Magnetic Water Softeners-Less expensive than the other home water softeners and recommended for drinking
Advantages of home water softeners
Since soft water contains virtually no calcium or magnesium, there will be no scale build-up in pipes, coffee makers and other appliances, water heaters, or on sinks or tubs. The aforementioned minerals in hard water will also stick to skin or hair.
In soft water, sodium replaces calcium and magnesium. Therefore, when soft water is mixed with shampoo or soap it reacts with the sodium causing more lather. So when you install a home water softener remember to use less soap or shampoo for the same level of cleanliness. Although, there are salt-free water softeners on the market.
Disadvantages of home water softeners
With all water softeners there are many considerations such as environment and softener rating. It may be recommended that you have a separate faucet used for drinking, cooking and water plants. You must also consider the resilience of your existing system and choose the correct home water softener for your needs and on-going maintenance budget.