Water softeners work by adding a certain amount of salt to the water, which changes its chemical balance of the minerals in the water. The new chemical balance allows for cleaning soaps and laundry detergents to get at dirt more easily. In addition to this, it prevents limescale from forming inside our appliances such as kettles and dishwashers.
These devices are not cheap, and they use a lot of salt to operate properly. If you don’t want to resort to such extremes, there is no need in buying one. You can easily soften water by yourself.
Furthermore, they require a lot of maintenance as well as the need to be installed correctly. None of these is needed when you soften your water on your own.
How to Soften Water Without a Water Softener
You can save some money by knowing how to soften the water in your home without having a water softener installed in it. The following methods will help you to do this.
Method 1: Boil the water
This may sound like a strange idea, but when boiling water, lime scale partly dissolves in it because of the chemical reaction between calcium and magnesium compounds in water and acidic mixture of acetic acid formed during boiling. Boiling is not only softening the water because it will also kill most of the bacteria that is found in it.
Method 2: Use a water ionizer
Water ionizers are electrical devices that use electrolysis to make soft water from hard one. This device changes the balance of minerals in water and reduces the content of magnesium and calcium compounds, which makes them soften.
The disadvantages of using a water ionizer are that it is more expensive than other methods, and new filters need to be installed after consuming certain amount of water.
Method 3: Use vinegar
Vinegar can be used to soften the water in the hot water heater tank in a similar fashion to a salt-based water softener. The instructions on how much vinegar you need to add are the same as for using salt-based water softeners.
Method 4: Use citric acid
It is available in the form of crystals or powder, and it can be used to soften water by adding some amount of it to your water heater tank. This method of softening will not only prevent scaling of hot water but will also prevent lime scale deposition in the pipes of your house.
Method 5: Use water filters
You can get a store-bought pitcher filter, which will remove magnesium and calcium compounds from hard water. If you plan on using this device for a long time, it may be advisable to buy an under-sink filter system that uses carbon-based filters to remove magnesium and calcium compounds that may clog your hot water tank.
Method 6: Use baking soda
If you mix baking soda with vinegar, the mixture will be able to soften the water coming to your house. Baking soda can be added in large amounts compared to other methods because it is cheap and safe for use.
Method 7: Use distilled water
Distilled water is the best kind of soft water as it has all impurities removed from it. It can be used as a substitute for expensive store-bought filters. In order to soften hard water, you can use a circulating pump and a heater. This method will not only make the process more expensive but it will also be time-consuming.
Method 8: Use a water softener
If none of the above-mentioned methods work for you, consider installing a water softener. There are both salt and potassium-based systems available on the market which work similarly to each other. Potassium is more expensive, but it offers some additional benefits such as preventing mold growth that may appear in the hot water heater tank.
Check out our post here on the Best Water Softener UK to see what’s the best for you.
Method 9: Use a salt-free water softener
This is another method you can use to soften the hard groundwater in your home without using salt. Manufacturers of such systems, such as Culligan and GE, claim that their devices will not clog or damage piping and appliances of your home.
However, these devices may not be able to soften your water enough, and you will have to consider additional methods of softening.
Method 10: Use bottled water
Bottled water is the last available method of softening hard water at home without using a salt-based or potassium-based system. This method is time-consuming and expensive, but it is also the most reliable one.
How do you know if you have hard water?
Calcium and magnesium carbonates dissolve in water to form a hard mineral structure. The hardness of the water is due to calcium and magnesium carbonates dissolving in it. If the water goes through pipes into our house, minerals may build up, causing limescale and other mineral deposits.
Around the food table, you may notice white stains or splatters on the faucets. These are calcified minerals formed from sea water. They are harmful but annoying and unsightly. Hard water can be seen on the walls around the fittings, as well as white stains and scratches around the water outlets and fixture.
Ion-exchange water softening
The most common applications for salt as a primary ion exchange material in the water sector are as follows: They work by removing calcium and magnesium ions from water and replacing them with sodium or potassium ions that cover the resin beads on the exchange tank.
Every week, the water softening ions and hardness ions must be replenished in order for the system to remove hardness. Metal Iron Pro is available in 10% cross link resin versions with up to 6ppm iron concentrations and is a good choice for chlorinated water with iron levels up to 10 ppm.
Using an ion-exchange system to soften hard water is the best way because it uses salt or potassium, which can be easily replaced when needed. This method is one of the safest and most economical ways to soften hard water at home because it does not require additional equipment.
So, make sure you know about all the available methods of softening hard water to determine which of them would benefit you the most.