Water softeners provide many solutions to household challenges but require regular maintenance to remain effective.
To ensure your water softener stays effective, using high-grade salt can prevent issues like salt bridging or mushing, which could interfere with the softening process – check out this page for more insights.
Check the water level
If your softener isn’t producing fresh and clean water as intended, it could be time to inspect the salt level in its brine tank. Most softeners require at least half of salt in their brine tanks for proper functioning; regularly monitor this with a reminder on your calendar or phone to avoid forgetting.
If your brine tank has become completely depleted or you are experiencing signs of hard water, like white spots on faucets or a chalky taste, it could be time for new salt. Consider switching from rock salt to evaporated salt pellets, which are smaller and easier to use – they may even come equipped with their own cleaner for increased efficiency in softening water.
Some models of water softeners utilize demand-initiated regeneration, meaning that they regenerate based on your water usage and may not require refilling as often. If you have this type of softener, be sure to refer back to its user manual and monitor your usage closely so you know when it’s time to replenish salt supplies.
Switch from regular table salt to kosher or sea salt when choosing water softener salt, as regular table salt can contain impurities that could damage equipment. Some manufacturers even suggest potassium chloride as an alternative.
Clean the brine tank
When maintaining a brine tank, regular maintenance must take place to keep its salt content under control and avoid hard, crusty bridges from forming around the tank. Furthermore, these bridges can clog your venturi valve and stop your softener from working efficiently.
To break up a salt bridge, use the back of a broom handle to scrape away at its surface carefully. It may take multiple attempts to completely break up the bridge if it is compacted.
When finished, rinse out your tank using a garden hose, place it back onto its pedestal, reconnect it to the water softener and be sure to thoroughly rinse so as to not contaminate your grass or garden with any salty residue from water softener or tank itself.
Add a quarter cup of resin cleaner when filling your tank, following manufacturer-recommended amounts, then let your system run a manual regeneration cycle to flush the cleaner throughout your resin bed and ensure its beads don’t become fouled with iron and other minerals that reduce softening effectiveness.
Doing this will also save money over time by decreasing cleanings and repairs needed over time.
Clean the resin bed
Your water softener works hard year-round to take out minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and iron from the tap water in your household. It works to eliminate limescale build-up in appliances as well as keep clothes, dishes, and hair soft and shiny for longer.
However, just like any home appliance requires periodic inspection and cleaning in order to function at full capacity – from checking salt levels, cleaning out brine tanks, and regularly maintaining resin beds to regular inspection and servicing visits – to ensure years of quality water.
Minerals in hard water are drawn to resin beads in a separate tank from the main salt reservoir, where they’re held until a regeneration cycle completes. Without regular cleaning of this resin tank, hardness minerals could build up over time, decreasing effectiveness and draining energy away.
A liquid water softener cleaner will help dissolve debris while clearing away debris to keep your softener working at its peak performance. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using a resin cleaner, as exceeding the recommended concentration or strength can damage it.
A water softener helps prevent the build-up of hardness minerals in your pipes and household appliances, which can degrade their efficiency, lifespan and performance over time.
Furthermore, hardness minerals may cause soap scum build-up on fixtures, dishes and laundry – as well as dry skin and hair conditions – taking good care in managing a water softener can ensure longer-lasting appliances with cleaner-looking and healthier-feeling skin and hair that require less time and effort for cleaning.
You need to know how to replace your filters correctly when the time comes. The first step should be turning off all water supplies by turning off all valves supplying the softener water supply; additionally, opening nearby faucets may help relieve pressure within the system and disconnect power (if applicable).
Once the water is turned off, use a filter wrench to locate and unscrew the filter housing sump cap from its socket. Remove both filters and any o-rings before installing and tightening your new filter – make sure it lines up with its respective brine tank lid arrow. Do not over-tighten, as this may cause leaks. Finally, close and seal all water softener valves once in place.