Whether you’re taking a shower or washing dishes, you need water that will leave things looking and feeling clean. Hard water contains harsh minerals that cause everything from dry and frizzy hair to water spots on your freshly washed plates. When you invest in a water softener, any worries about hard water problems fade away. We have created an intuitive guide to help you determine what size water softener you need for your home.
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Ways to Properly Size a Water Softener
Wondering what size water softener you need? Follow these three simple steps to get a better idea.
1. Calculate the Daily Softening Requirements
The daily softening requirement measures the amount of water a water softener must soften daily to maintain a desired hardness level. This amount is usually expressed in gallons per day. Here is a handy formula to calculate it:
Daily softening requirement = daily water consumption (in gallons) X water hardness in GPG
GPG (grains per gallon) is the amount of salt needed to soften one gallon of water.
2. Water Hardness
Water hardness measures the number of dissolved minerals present in the water. On the other hand, soft water measures how much dissolved salt is present in the water. Water hardness is measured in either mg/L (milligrams per Liter) or GPG (grains per gallon), although GPG is more common. You will need to know the hardness of your water before determining what size water softener you need because the hardness determines how many minerals the softener will need to remove.
The more minerals that are dissolved in water, the harder it is. The two most common minerals present in water are calcium and magnesium. The type and concentration of these minerals in the water dictate suitability for use in different applications—such as drinking, bathing, and washing clothes. Hard water can create issues such as soap scum, laundry detergent build-up, mineral deposits on fixtures, and other household problems.
3. Water Consumption
Another key component in choosing the right size water softener is ensuring it can keep up with your water consumption. An easy way to calculate water consumption is to reference your water bills to see how much water you use each month. From there, you can determine your daily water use. This number will tell you how much water a water softener needs to soften daily.
Why You Should Care About Efficiency
The more efficient a water softener is, the less salt it requires to function. That means you will spend less on the salt solution needed to operate the water softener. Efficient water softeners last longer due to less wear and tear and provide an endless supply of soft water.
Discharging Water Softener Backwash
Once you are complete with sizing and installing a water softener in your living space, you will need to become familiar with the ways to discharge the backwash in the system. You will want to discharge the backwash in your system regularly to maintain its efficiency and the quality of water it produces.
What Is Water Softener Backwash?
Water softener backwash is the process of removing the salt and harsh minerals from your water softener. The backwash primarily consists of sodium, potassium, and calcium but also contains small amounts of boron, silicate, phosphate, and carbonate.
Where to Safely Discharge Water Softener Backwash
Discharging water softener backwash in a safe environment is essential to the process. The following seven locations are all safe and acceptable options.
- Dry well
- Septic tank
- French drain
- Floor drain
- Sump pump
- Sewage ejector pump
- Local sewage system
Reliable Water Softener Repair & Installation Services
Want to improve the quality of the water you drink, cook with, shower in, and clean with? Our team of plumbers provide reliable water softener installation and repair services for homes in Jacksonville, FL and other areas. In addition, we offer other types of plumbing services such as sump pump replacement, water heater repair, drain clearing, and water line installation. If you have excess minerals in your water, give our team of technicians a call at (904) 217-5694 to book an appointment. Our plumbers will help you install a water softener in your house to improve the quality of your water.