Water Softeners Are Well Water Treatment For Hard Water
Municipalities treat water to remove impurities before it is pumped to the local residents. When you receive water from a private well, you are responsible for the quality of your water. That means have your water tested annually, and dealing with any contaminants or impurities found.
Hard water is a common problem among homeowners who receive their water from a private well. It's created when surface water flows through soil and rock that contains impurities like limestone or iron. The water dissolves these minerals and metals and they're carried by the water as it moves through the soil into your aquifer.
Hard water is a nuisance and can wreak havoc on your homes appliances and plumbing. The best way to deal with hard water problems is to install a water softener. Water softeners treat your water as it enters your home and removes the mineral and metal contaminants that cause hard water.
What is Hard Water?
Excessive levels of dissolved minerals in your water supply, which occur naturally in soil and rocks are the cause of hard water. The most common culprits are calcium and magnesium along with iron. These minerals are leached from limestone and other naturally occurring substances as water passes through soil on its way to your aquifer.
Hard water is usually not a heath risk, in fact calcium and magnesium can actually be good for you. Unfortunately, they're not good for your homes plumbing and appliances that use water. These dissolved solids can cause build up in your pipes and staining on fixtures, it can make your detergent less effective, leave deposits on everything from your water heater to your coffee pot to your glassware.
Water softeners work to remove the minerals that cause hard water. This makes cleaning your house and washing your clothes easier and can prolong the life of your appliances sometime by years!
How Water Softeners Work – The Ion Exchange Process
Water softeners remove minerals from the water through that magic of science! Actually, the process is called ion exchange and it basically works by replacing the minerals in your water, with another element, usually sodium.
Ions carry either a positive or negative charge because there is an imbalance between electrons and protons within their molecules. Cations are elements with a positive charge and anions are negatively charged. Calcium, magnesium and iron and sodium are all positively charged cations. Sodium has a much weaker charge which allows for the exchange.
Water softeners consist of several stages. First a tank is filled with resin beads. These resin beads are negatively charge and they are “seeded” with the weaker sodium ions. Well water is pumped into the exchange tank and as hard water passes through the tank, the stronger charged calcium, magnesium and iron ions are pulled to the media. Since the higher charged particles are stronger than the sodium, they knock the sodium ions off the beads and take their place. The hardness minerals are trapped and the purified water is passed into a storage tank to be distributed throughout your home. While this water includes a small amount of the displaced sodium ions, it is imperceptible.
Once the clean water has passed through the system, the water softener the beads are “regenerated” or re-ionized and the process starts over. The system contains a secondary tank which is known as the brine tank. This tank is where the homeowner adds sodium to create the salt solution needed for ion exchange. Once the clean water passes from the ionization tank, the brine tank released the salt water solution into the ionization tank. The beads are washed in the brine which flushed the minerals from the beads and the media is replenished with new sodium ions. The waste water containing the released minerals is then flushed from the system and the process begins again.
Call Skillings and Sons The Well Water Treatment Specialists
Water softeners are a smart addition t your water system if you get your water from a well. Combining softening with another type of treatment like reverse osmosis is the perfect way to provide your family with unlimited clean safe water for drinking, cooking, and bathing. Soft water is also necessary for today's high-efficiency appliances which are particularly susceptible to damage from hard water.
If you'd like to learn how a water softener can improve the quality of your home's water give us a call. At Skillings & Sons we offer well water treatment systems including water softeners. We can help you test your well to determine the levels of hard water minerals present and can design the perfect treatment system to provide your family with clean, safe water.