If you’ve heard of water softeners before, you’ve probably wondered if they actually make that much of a difference and if they’re really worth installing. After all, the water coming out of your faucets is safe for drinking and bathing. What’s the harm in continuing to use the hard water in your home as it is?
While hard water may not be detrimental to your health, it definitely has some downsides, whereas soft water has tangible and long-term financial benefits.
If you're considering a water softener for your home, here are some benefits of installing one that you may not have considered yet.
1. Soft water warms up more quickly than hard water.
Studies have revealed that on an annual basis, the typical American household wastes 9,000 gallons of water while waiting for water coming out of a tap to heat up. If you find that you’re waiting a few minutes to get hot water for a shower or bath, you’re probably wasting a lot more water than you realize. By installing a water softener, you can reduce the amount of water that goes wasted because softer heats up faster than hard water.
2. Soft water helps appliances operate more efficiently.
Because soft water heats up faster than hard water, your water heater does not have to work as hard to produce warm water. In fact, research by the Virginia Cooperative Extension indicates that using a water softener can improve an electric water heater’s efficiency by 22% and a gas water heater’s efficiency by 29%. Taking this into account, not only would soft water help your water heater run more efficiently, but it would also save you money on your gas or electric bill.
In addition, with soft water, your water heater, dishwasher, and washing machine won’t suffer from a buildup of mineral residue and soap scum, as is commonly the case with hard water. This also translates into savings because this means you’ll be making fewer appliance repairs or replacements.
3. You’ll get better water flow from your plumbing fixtures.
A lack of hard minerals in soft water also means that you won’t get buildup that clogs or reduces the water flow from your showerhead and faucets--no more time spent soaking your plumbing fixtures in vinegar and scrubbing away mineral deposits.
4. You’ll have cleaner clothes and healthier-feeling skin and hair.
The iron, magnesium, and calcium in hard water do something unexpected when they encounter soap: they interact with soap in such a way that a stubborn scum is created. This scum can adhere to a variety of surfaces and make it harder for them to get truly clean.
The contents of hard water can also cause skin to get dry and irritated and can make hair look dull and feel brittle. Many people who upgrade to soft water report healthier, softer hair and skin that feels more hydrated.
If you’d like to learn more about what a water softener installation might entail and how it could further benefit your home, contact the experts at EZ Flow Plumbing.