Tips For Selecting A Water Softener System
People install water softeners because these units:
- add more life to water-using appliances by limiting mineral scale build up caused by San Diego’s notorious hard water
- prevent water stains on glasses and dishes
- save homeowners money on soap and detergent
- minimize the drying effects of hard water on hair and skin
Soft water gets clothes, appliances, dishes and skin looking and feeling cleaner because it rinses away soap and mineral deposits. Hard water adds mineral deposits. Soft water contains a low level of salt that interacts with both soap and mineral deposits, breaking them down. Household water picks up salt when passing through the water softeners’ salt and ion-exchange resin filters.
Water filter? Water softener?
Where a water FILTER removes mineral and metal deposits as well as contaminants and pollutants, the water SOFTENER removes just mineral deposits.
Many San Diegans get by with the water softener because their biggest concern is the calcium and magnesium scale on glasses, hair and appliances. Family-operated San Diego plumbing company Perry Plumbing Heating & Air helps families find the best water softener solutions that fit their budgets. Read our post on the differences between water softeners and water filters here to determine which you would prefer.
Water Softener Costs
At the low end, most pay $400 for a basic unit but installation costs boost the entire price to $1000. Larger homes with three to four bathrooms need a larger softener which can run $1,000 to $2,500. Adding labor to that runs total costs to $1,300 to $10,000. The higher pricing typically occurs when a home or business needs a new space for the unit, new piping and/or a better drain.
More Salt in the Water Means More Salt in the Diet
As mentioned above, the water softener holds a filter containing salt that helps to remove calcium and magnesium deposits. It also means that some added salt gets into drinking and cooking water as well. Most choose to soften just the hot water to keep sodium levels down. Severely sodium-restricted individuals should consult with their doctor before buying. Units without sodium filters do exist. These include electronic and magnetic water softeners.
Determine the Unit You Need
Capacity: If you look at a website selling water softeners, you will see “36,400-Grain Water Softener” vs. “50,000 Grain” or “22,000 Grain.” These figures refer to the amount of calcium and magnesium they remove per year. Most homes with four inhabitants use a 33,000 grain unit. In San Diego, the amount of grains per gallon runs 13.4 to 19. Officials consider water with more than 10.5 grains per gallon very hard. If your neighborhood falls on the higher end of the San Diego range, going with the higher yearly processing potential makes sense. You can buy a water testing kit online, or Perry Plumbing Heating & Air can perform this service for you with the most accurate equipment.
Size: It is important to choose a water softener that handles household water usage, but doe not take up too much room.
Perry Plumbing Heating & Air Gets Your Family the Good Water It Deserves
Water softeners typically last 10 -15 years, but some make it to 20. Clearly, costs are nearly all up front. The water softener will add to the value of your home.
Water softener manufacturers can confuse any home or business owner about the best unit to buy. With 38 years experience installing water softener systems from Del Mar to Point Loma to Bonita, our technicians can explain the capacity of water softener you need to keep appliances running smoothly, glasses crystal clear and hair free of soap residue. Our 5-star reviews on Yelp, Facebook and more attest to our dedication and expertise. Call Perry Plumbing Heating & Air at 619-472-2112 to discuss your water softener options. Do not forget to look at our plumbing coupons page for your chance to save on all plumbing repair and installation work!