How to Soften Hard Well Water

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Hard water is a common problem for many households with well water. Telltale signs of hard water include graying laundry, soap that doesn't lather well and unattractive rings on the floor of the bathtub or shower. Hard water is cause by minerals leaching into the ground water supply. Softening hard well water is done by adding sodium or potassium to the water through filtering tank.

  • Have your water tested to make sure it is "hard." You local health agency can test the water for you, or you can contract out to a private laboratory. You can find listings under "water treatment companies" in the Yellow Pages.

  • Purchase a water-softening tank. Select a single tank or a double tank, which can store salt (the softening agent) as well as water.

  • Plan to have the water-softening tank installed by a professional.

  • Install a piping bypass to send treated water to bathtubs, showers and washing machines. Prevent softened water from feeding outdoor faucets and drinking water.

Tips & Warnings

  • You can rent a complete water softening kit from companies that take care of installation and maintenance.
  • People with high blood pressure or who are on a salt-restricted diet should not drink softened well water.
  • Hard water can lead to clogged pipes due to mineral build up inside the pipes, which speeds up corrosion.
  • Softened water is stripped of valuable minerals that promote good health. It is good to have one source of "hard" drinking water available.
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