If you have particularly hard water coming into your home, you probably know you can improve the situation with a water softener. By installing a water softener, you'll remove that ugly scale buildup that can occur on your fixtures and help reduce the feeling of skin dryness that hard water can sometimes cause.
While these are the more obvious reasons to install a water softener in your home, they aren't the only ones. Although you should always test your water for mineral content before making any decisions, this article will discuss three potentially unexpected reasons you may want a water softener if you discover a hardness problem.
1. Reducing Water Heater Maintenance
Your water heater is one of the most vulnerable appliances in your home to hard water. The heat in the water heater's tank will cause minerals to settle, forming a layer on the bottom of the tank that can prevent the burners from effectively heating the water. At a minimum, you'll need to spend more time flushing and maintaining your tank.
Tankless water heaters are even more vulnerable to hard water. Scale buildup in a tankless heater can reduce flow through the heater and even cause damage to the unit. Descaling these heaters is also often more involved than flushing a conventional water heater. In either case, installing a water softener can help you avoid many of these issues.
2. Preventing Appliance Issues
Appliances that rely on water hookups often use much smaller pipes and tubing than your home's plumbing, making them more vulnerable to scale buildup. For example, refrigerators with ice makers or cold water dispensers may be particularly susceptible to scale issues. However, washing machines and dishwashers can develop problems, as well.
These problems can lead to early failures, costly repair bills, or frustrating and time-consuming maintenance. While typical water hardness levels usually aren't an issue, more substantial mineral content can be a problem. Using a water softener is an easy way to ensure you don't run into scale problems with your home's appliances.
3. Lowering Your Dishwashing Costs
Your skin isn't the only thing that notices the difference between hard and soft water. Hard water can also affect your dishes, making cleaning the dishes more frustrating and forcing you to use more water. If you measure out your soap for your dishwasher, you'll typically need more powder or liquid for hard water. Even worse, the water can still leave mineral spots behind.
A water softener can reduce or eliminate these problems, allowing you to use less soap while making your dishes even cleaner. While the cost of dishwashing detergent may not be huge, it's yet another surprising benefit of dealing with your home's hard water once and for all.
As a teenager, I joined my local swim team and soon became a champion swimmer. I have been swimming my entire life, and my love for water pushed me to purchase a home with a large in-ground pool. Strangely enough, after years of swimming I had no idea how to take care of the pool. I knew that I needed to add chemicals to get rid of potentially dangerous bacteria, and I also knew that chemicals kept algae at bay. I didn't know how to choose from hydrogen peroxide, salt, or chlorine additives. I definitely had no idea about shock, and I didn't know how many chemicals to add. After some trial and error, a very green pool, and a necessary draining, I figured it out. I have compiled for you a number of blogs and resources so you do not have to make costly mistakes like me.