Water Softeners vs Salt-Free Water Softeners

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What are Water Softening Systems?

“Hard water” has high levels of minerals like calcium and magnesium – healthy minerals that can nonetheless create issues for your plumbing and appliances. And, it’s a common water issue across the country with as many as 85% of Americans experiencing hard water. But what’s the solution?

The term "water softener" is used to describe a group of products that can help reduce the mineral ions that create hard water. There are two common ways in which water softening systems treat hard water to prevent scaling and etching: salt-based water softeners and salt-free water softener alternative. Each option will help reduce hard water issues giving you longer-lasting appliances and happier homes, but how do you know which solution is best for you? We’ll help you break it down…

First things first, you should test your home water to determine your local water hardness level.

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How to Test Your Water
Receive a free water test with home water consultation. Available in select markets only. 

Order Online
Purchase a 16-Point Rapid Water Test and check your water the most common contaminants. 

Water Softeners vs. Salt-Free Water Softener Alternatives

rotary valve softener
Salt Free Water Softener Alternative
  Water Softener Salt-Free Water Softener Alternative
Whole home solution X X
Reduces scale build up X X
Ideal for water that is moderately hard or hard water levels X  
Works on water that is low-level hard water X X
Removes mineral ions, like calcium and magnesium, from water X  
Neutralizes ions, leaving in beneficial minerals   X
Electronically programmable X  
On-demand water regeneration reduces waste water X  
No electricity required to operate   X
Multiple sizes available for any size home X X
No salt refills necessary   X
Results in softer skin, shinier hair X X
Helps extend the life of water-using appliances X X
Gives you fluffier, right-out-of-the-dryer laundry X X

Remember, to choose the right hard water solution, you should first test your home water to determine your local water hardness level.

  • Soft water contains 0 to 60 mg/L of dissolved calcium
  • Low hard water contains 61 to 120 mg/L of dissolved calcium
  • Moderate hard water contains 121 to 180 mg/L of dissolved calcium
  • Very hard water contains more than 180 mg/L of dissolved calcium

A salt-based water softener is the ideal choice for homeowners with moderate or very hard water. Call us today for a free in-home consultation and water test, or buy a Pentair Rapid Water Test to learn your water hardness level at home.