How to Install a Water Softener

A water softener is a device that removes calcium and magnesium from your household water supply. These minerals cause hard water, which can build up on sinks, appliances, dishes and toilets. Installing a home water softener is an easy project. In fact, most people can install one in less than half a day with little more than a screwdriver and some plumber’s putty.

water heater

How to Install a Water Softener: Step by Step Guide

water softener installation

Step 1: Shut Off the Water Valve

Shut off the water valve to your household plumbing system. This is typically located below the house in a basement or crawlspace, but you should check for it near the main water shutoff valve on the exterior of your home. If you have an older house, you may find that you have to shut off the valve at the main water meter.

Step 2: Attach Y-Adapter Fitting

Attach one end of a Y-fitting to your plumbing system just below the shutoff valve with plumber’s putty and a wrench. The other end should lead to the water softener.

Step 3: Attach Water Softener Line to Y-Adapter

Attach the water softener line to the Y-fitting with plumbing tape and wrench. The line should be marked “in” or “input”. It may need to go in either direction, so it is important to label which end goes into the fitting first.

Step 4: Attach Cold-Water Line to Softener

Attach the other end of the water softener line to your cold-water supply line with plumbing tape and wrench. This should be marked “out” or “output”, but again, it doesn’t matter which direction it goes. The main thing is not to confuse them because both lines are now attached to the Y-fitting.

Step 5: Attach Line to Drain Valve for Venting

water softener installed

Attach a water line to the drain valve on your softener so draining excess water is easy. This should be marked “drain” or “vent”. The other end of this line can be connected directly to your home’s plumbing system if desired.

Step 6: Attach Drain Line to Septic Tank or Sewer System

Attach a drain line from the water softener to your septic tank or sewer system with a hose clamp and a piece of semi-flexible tubing. The line should be marked “drain” or “vent”.

Step 7: Check Water Supply Connection

Check the water supply line to your softener one last time to ensure that no leaks are present. You may need to tighten connections or add more plumbing tape if necessary.

Step 8 : Plug in Your Water Softener

If you have an electric water softener, plug it into a standard electrical outlet. If you have a brine tank water softener, fill the salt cylinder with table salt or potassium chloride pellets from your local hardware store.

Step 9: Program Your Softener

If your system is computerized, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to properly program it for your household water supply. Most water softeners will test your incoming water supply to determine how much salt you need to use.

Step 10: Enjoy the Benefits of Soft Water!

water softener unit

When your system is up and running, you will notice better-looking dishes, brighter laundry and fewer spots on your glasses. A water softener can help extend the life of appliances like dishwashers and washing machines by reducing scale buildup. And, your home will no longer feel like a “fish tank” thanks to softer water that feels great on your skin.

Visit also our post here on the Best Water Softener UK so you can choose what’s best for your needs.

When does hard water need a softener?

The state’s health department says that if the minerals in an item are above the recommended mineral content, Softeners may be necessary. Also, there are do-it-yourself test kits available that may be obtained at any home center or hardware shop.

Maybe you can call the local water company to find out what your water’s mineral hardness is. DIY tests are also feasible and may be found at home improvement stores or hardware shops.

Things you should know before installing a water softener

bypass valve

The level of difficulty with installing a water softener varies. If you’re not familiar with pipes, you’ll most likely require the aid of a professional pipe contractor. When you’re having trouble with your plumbing, it’s tempting to assume that everything is simply fine.

However, if water won’t drain and drains remain clogged, something may be wrong with one or more of the components within your drainage system. If you have DIY skills and believe you can execute a task in the field of handyman’s work, you may begin installing water softeners right now.

Where can I install water softener system?

You can install water softeners in nearly any place in your home. One of the most common areas to add a water softener is near the kitchen sink, but you may also add one right beside your washing machine or in another convenient location.

Before you begin, identify where you want to locate it. It’s advisable to install a water softener system in a dry area that’s away from moisture.

Professional installation cost

softened water

Hiring a professional might cost more or less in your region and the size of your home. In Florida, getting assistance usually costs between $5,000 and $6,000. Around one fourth of all your payments will not reach $2,000.

A bigger home that consumes a greater quantity of water will need a superior softener. Even if the water softener is the same size, it’ll cost more because it’s from different vendors. You’ll generally have a set price to work with rather than paying more than you thought after looking for supplies for an installation.

DIY installation cost

Most water softeners cost between $150 and $2,000. The majority of houses do not require a pricey water softener. Additionally, you will have to pay for any materials that aren’t supplied by us. The more people there are in the home, the less softeners will be required.

If you’re replacing an old softener, your cost is likely to rise from $200 to $5,000 or more. You may waste a lot of money if you don’t know about softeners.


water softener installation

Without a water softener, you may be spending too much money on cleaning products and washing clothes. This is why it’s important to know that installing a water softener system is easy and will provide your house with the hardness-free water we all desire.

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