The 7 Best Water Softeners of 2022 (2022)

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The 7 Best Water Softeners of 2022 (1)

A qualitywater softenerremoves calcium, magnesium, and other minerals that cause hard water—which can damage appliances, dry out hair and skin, and leave buildup on the surfaces in your kitchen and bathroom—from your water supply. "The most important thing for finding the right product for your home is understanding the water in your home," says Tim Dunphy, water expert at Leaf Home Water Solutions. "That really comes from getting your water tested, so then you can get the right product recommended to solve your home’s unique water challenges.

If you've had your water tested for hard water, there are plenty of water softeners available on the market to purchase. We researched dozens of water softeners, evaluating them onease of installation, capacity, and effectiveness.Our best overall pick, theGE GXSH40V Water Softener, has a high grain capacity, digital controller, and the ability to optimize its regeneration schedule during periods of peak water usage.

Here are the best water softeners for every type of household.

Our Top Picks

Best Heavy Duty:

Pelican Water 80,000 Grain Heavy Duty Water Softener at Home Depot

(Video) BEST Water Softener Systems Review💧(Ultimate 2022 Guide For Hard Water)

Jump to Review

In This Article

  • Our Picks

  • What to Look for

  • Why Trust The Spruce

Best Overall:GE GXSH40V Water Softener

4.6

The 7 Best Water Softeners of 2022 (2)

What do buyers say? 82% of 300+ Amazon reviewers rated this product 4 stars or above.

What We Like

  • Smart features to optimize regeneration schedule

  • Relatively compact for its capacity

  • Adjustable water hardness controls

  • Useful digital indicators

What We Don't Like

  • Long regeneration cycle

"Smart" and "efficient" are two ways to describe the functionality of this popular whole house water softener. The GE GXSH40V has a 40,200-grain capacity—sufficient for typical 4-person households. It features GE’s SmartSoft technology, which allows the system to detect water usage patterns and optimize regeneration schedules so that softened water is available during peak periods of usage such as during your family's morning shower rush or at dinnertime. Regeneration takes about 2 hours and uses 37 gallons of water.

Its smart features aren't the only thing that makes this water softener our top pick. This model only takes about 30 minutes to an hour to install, which is much less time than other water softeners on the market. At 14.4 x 22.4 x 47.6 inches, it's likely small enough to fit in your laundry room or water closet.

One of the most unique features of the GE GXSH40V is its blending valve, which allows you to adjust the hardness of your water to match your needs. Using the digital controller, you can adjust water hardness levels, conserving salt usage, or increasing water softness to suit your preference. The controller will also provide you with a ‘Days to Empty’ indicator, giving you an at-a-glance indicator of when it’s time to add more to the 230-pound capacity salt bin.

This water softener not only delivers on its promise to remove iron and grains from your water, but its smart technology almost anticipates your needs, which is why it's our top pick.

Price at time of publish: $749

Type: Salt-based| Grain Capacity: 40,200 |Maximum Hardness Removal: 126 GPG | Regeneration Cycle: About 2 hours using 37 gallons of water |Ideal Household Size: 4 people

Best Budget:Waterboss Model 900 36,400 Grain Water Softener

The 7 Best Water Softeners of 2022 (3)

What We Like

  • Quick and efficient regeneration cycle

  • High grain capacity makes it suitable for very hard water

  • Filters dirt, sediment, ferrous iron, for great tasting water

(Video) ✅ 7 Best Digital Water Softener New Model 2022

What We Don't Like

  • Difficult to install

While water softener systems can frequently creep past $500 or $1,000 depending on filtration abilities and features, the Waterboss 900 is an economical choice. This budget water softener system is compact and cost-effective yet still equipped to handle the water needs of an average 3-4 person household.

This water softener has a 36,400-grain capacity and filters water with a hardness up to 90 GPG. Impressively, the regeneration cycle takes just 24 minutes and uses only 17.2 gallons of water. A user-friendly digital controller controls the softener’s settings and regeneration. As with many other water softeners, this compact unit includes a bypass valve to preserve media life.

Price at time of publish: $560

Type: Salt-based| Grain Capacity: 36,400 | Maximum Hardness Removal: 90 GPG |Regeneration Cycle: 24 minutes using 17.2 gallons of water |Ideal Household Size: 3-4 people

Best System:GE GXMH31H 30,000 Grain Water Softener and Filter in One

The 7 Best Water Softeners of 2022 (4)

What We Like

  • Indicator screen tells you how many days until the unit needs a recharge

  • Sediment and chlorine filter

What We Don't Like

  • Long regeneration cycle

When paired with water filtration components, a water softener system can reduce the mineral content of your water while also improving the smell and taste of your drinking water. The GE GXMH31H Water Softener and Filter in One accomplishes both purposes with one compact set-up.

This water softener system is capable of reducing hard water up to 120 grains per gallon and can filter 31,100 grains before regeneration. Regeneration can be time-intensive, taking between 105 and 152 minutes, and also requiring a hefty amount of water (54.7 gallons) when compared to similar softeners.

In addition to softening water to your preferred hardness using a custom blending valve, the GE Water Softener and Filter in One reduces chlorine taste and odor in your water.

Price at time of publish: $499

Type: Salt-based | Grain Capacity: 31,100 | Maximum Hardness Removal: 120 GPG | Regeneration Cycle: 105-152 minutes using 54.7 gallons of water |Ideal Household Size: Not listed

The 8 Best Whole-house Water Filters of 2022 | by The Spruce

Best Portable:On The Go Portable Double Standard Water Softener

The 7 Best Water Softeners of 2022 (5)

What We Like

  • Compact design fits anywhere

  • Rope carrying handle

  • Easy regeneration

What We Don't Like

  • Low grain capacity requires frequent regeneration

The On The Go Portable Double Standard Water Softener is the best option for RVs, boats, buses, or any other situation where a water softener needs to be compact and movable.

(Video) Top 10 Best Water Softeners 2022 Reviews

The On The Go water softener has a 16,000 grain capacity, which is the lowest capacity of any of our recommendations, but it makes up for it with a straightforward regeneration cycle that takes less than 30 minutes and uses two boxes of table salt. Regeneration is made even easier thanks to the system's large, open mouth. Depending on how hard your water is, the On The Go has a high enough grain capacity to provide between 640 and 1,600 gallons of softened water in between regenerations.

True to its name, the On The Go has a number features that make it ideal for travelers and anyone likely to uninstall and reinstall the unit in multiple locations. In addition to its 22 by 9.5-inch design, it has a carry handle on top, plus a cap and plug to prevent leaking during travel. It also uses a standard hose connection and requires no tools to install.

With a flow rate of three gallons per minute, this water softener is more than capable of keeping up with an RV or marine shower. It also comes with hardness test strips, hose adapters, and a cradle base for stable installation.

On The Go also offers a smaller Portable Standard Water Softener, without about half the capacity, but we believe it's worth the upgrade for the extra capacity.

Price at time of publish: $275

Type: Salt-based | Grain Capacity: 16,000 | Maximum Hardness Removal: 58 GPG | Regeneration Cycle: 24-30 minutes |Ideal Household Size: Mobile, RV

Best for Well Water:Aquasure Harmony Water Softener with Fine Mesh Resin for Iron Removal

The 7 Best Water Softeners of 2022 (6)

What We Like

  • Iron filter ideal for well water

  • Fine mesh resin to capture wide range of minerals

  • Ability to handle very hard water

  • Useful digital controls

What We Don't Like

  • No way to quickly check salt levels

A water softener for well water is typically equipped with an iron filter. This additional filter helps to address the specific needs of homes supplied by well water and reduces the presence of iron and rust stains on sinks, tubs, and toilets.

Aquasure’s Harmony series is outfitted with fine mesh resin that captures minerals like calcium, magnesium, and iron. It has the ability to filter water with a hardness up to 110 GPG. Choose between water softeners with the capacity to filter 32,000, 48,000, or 64,000 GPG before regeneration is needed. The regeneration cycle uses 40 gallons of water and lasts 98 minutes. Regardless of the size tank you choose, the Aquasure has a digital control console that monitors water consumption and regulates the frequency of regeneration.

Price at time of publish: $580

Type: Salt-based| Grain Capacity: 48,000 |Maximum Hardness Removal: 110 GPG | Regeneration Cycle: 98 minutes using 40 gallons of water |Ideal Household Size: Up to 5 people

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Best Salt-Based:Rheem RHS32 Preferred 32,000 Grain Water Softener

The 7 Best Water Softeners of 2022 (7)

What We Like

  • Large salt storage tank reservoir

  • Low salt monitor

  • Angled design and inner tank light for easy maintenance

What We Don't Like

  • Long, 2-hour regeneration cycle

Salt-based water softeners are a familiar sight in homes supplied by hard water. A popular and affordable salt-based softener for average-sized households is the Rheem Preferred 32,000 Grain Water Softener.

This model from Rheem uses a treated resin bed to capture calcium and magnesium particles from hard water. After processing 32,000 grains, the system will regenerate—which takes 2 hours and uses 24 gallons of water. The salt storage tank holds 175 pounds and needs periodic refilling, but the system has a low salt monitor that will provide a visual alert when the salt supply is running low. Rheem also equipped this model with technology to detect water usage patterns and optimize regeneration cycles to conserve salt, water, and energy.

Price at time of publish: $419

Type: Salt-based| Grain Capacity: 32,000 |Maximum Hardness Removal: 105 GPG | Regeneration Cycle: 2 hours using 24 gallons of water |Ideal Household Size: Up to 4 people

(Video) ✅7 Best Water Softener System in 2022 - Best Water Softener

Best Heavy Duty:Pelican Water 80,000 Grain Heavy Duty Water Softener

The 7 Best Water Softeners of 2022 (8)

What We Like

  • Processes 4,000 gallons of water before needing regeneration

  • Metered backwash controller

What We Don't Like

  • Only handles water hardness up to 75 grains per gallon

Households that have very hard water may benefit from a heavy-duty water softener, which has a higher maximum grain capacity than typical water softeners.This heavy-duty water softener from Pelican Water is rated to capture 80,000 grains and process 4,000 gallons of water before regeneration is necessary.

Maximum hardness removal is 75 grains per gallon, which is not as high as some other water softeners but is much higher than average water hardness levels in most areas. Regeneration cycles take 105 minutes and use 100 gallons of water, but the system includes a controller for a metered backwash function to reduce the use of unnecessary water.

Price at time of publish: $1,828

Type: Salt-based| Grain Capacity: 80,000 | Maximum Hardness Removal: 75 GPG | Regeneration Cycle: 105 minutes using 100 gallons of water |Ideal Household Size: 3-4 people

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Final Verdict

The GE GXSH40V Water Softener (view at AJ Madison) is our top pick as a water softener for average-size households. It filters 40,200 grains before launching triggering a 2-hour regeneration cycle that uses just 37 gallons of water. If you're on a budget, check out the Waterboss 36,400 Grain Water Softener (view at Home Depot), which can accommodate up to 4-person households.

What to Look for in a Water Softener

Type

There are three types of water softeners: salt-based softeners, salt-free water conditioners, and electromagnetic conditioners.

Salt-based softeners are the most popular systems for residential use. However, they do require ongoing attention and maintenance. Homeowners will need to purchase a supply of sodium chloride or potassium chloride regularly and keep the salt holding tank full for regeneration. Resin media generally has about a 10-year lifespan, but it depends on water quality and usage.

Salt-free and electromagnetic water conditioners don’t remove calcium and magnesium particles from the water. Instead, these systems neutralize the particles to eliminate their ability to stick to plumbing fixtures and appliances. The benefit of conditioned water is that it prevents scale build-up without the need to regularly buy salt and add it to the system.

Capacity

Water softener capacity is usually indicated in how many particles the system can filter before needing a regeneration cycle. Capacity generally ranges from about 28,000 grains for small water softeners to 80,000 grains for heavy-duty softener systems. An average-sized water softener for three to four-person households is usually in the range of 32,000 to 40,000 grains.

Bypass Valve

A bypass valve enables you to divert water from the softener system, which can be useful in a number of situations. When turned on, the valve will direct the flow from your water pipe past the softener system—enabling you to work on the softener without shutting off water to the whole house. A bypass valve is also sometimes useful when using a volume of water where water hardness is not an issue. For example, if you’re doing yardwork it might make sense to divert water from the softener. Doing so saves the resin media from filtering water unnecessarily and shortening the time until the system’s next regeneration cycle.

FAQ

  • What are the pros and cons of a water softener?

    If you have hard water, a water softener can reduce the number of mineral spots on glassware and prevent the build-up of minerals on the inside of your pipes. Water softeners work by using coated resin beads (which have a negative ion charge) to attract and capture particles responsible for water hardness—specifically calcium and magnesium (which have a positive charge). These particles bind to the resin while the treated water flows through the resin bed and through your home’s plumbing system.

    A water softener helps prevent potential long-term damage to your plumbing and can extend the life of your dishwasher and washing machine. Conversely, for some people, the extra sodium in softened water can be harmful. Anyone with high blood pressure should check with a doctor before installing a water softener. According to guidance released by the Minnesota Department of Health, people on a low-sodium diet should keep a separate, un-softened tap for cooking and drinking.

    The addition of another appliance in your home does come with added maintenance requirements to ensure the water softener is functioning as intended.

  • What size water softener do I need for a family of 4?

    For a family of 4, look for a water softener with a grain count between 30,000 to 40,000, with a minimum grain capacity of 30,000 units.

  • How much does it cost to install a water softener?

    The cost to install a water softener depends on the type of system and how much time the installation will take. Some water softener systems are easy enough for a DIY installation. For a straightforward installation that doesn’t require installing or cutting pipes, the cost may be $300 or less. More complex systems may cost $500 to $6,000, or more.

  • What is the best place to install a water softener?

    Ideally, a water softener should be placed on a flat, stable surface near the point where the water supply enters the home and close to an electrical outlet. You’ll want to make sure the water softener is installed so that it only treats the water you use for drinking, cooking, and washing, and not irrigation.

    Check the manufacturer’s instructions regarding placement. Water softeners should not be placed in direct sunlight, or in areas where freezing temperatures may occur.

Why Trust The Spruce?

This article was researched and written by Erica Puisis, a professional writer that specializes in large and small appliances for the home. She has written more than 200 articles for The Spruce, including articles on water testing kits, water heaters, and filtration systems.Emma Phelps also contributed to this article by contacting Tim Dunphy, a water expert at Leaf Home Water Solutions. Dunphy provided insightful context for understanding how water softeners function as well as best practices for maintaining their systems.

(Video) Best Water Softener 2022 - Top 5 Picks

FAQs

Which is the best soft water? ›

  • #1 FutureSoft Salt-Free Water Softener.
  • #2 SoftPro Elite Water Softener.
  • #3 SpringWell Salt-Based Water Softener.
  • #4 Fleck 5600SXT Water Softener System.
  • #5 Pelican Advantage Series Salt Water Softener.
29 Apr 2022

Does Consumer Reports review water softeners? ›

Although Consumer Reports does not test whole-house water softeners, we do have new Ratings of water filters.

What water softener does NASA use? ›

NASA Technology

Many Puronics® water softeners incorporate a SilverShield® HYgene® filter to inhibit bacteria growth within the filter media bed. The technology behind this proprietary product was adapted from NASA's silver ion technology developed to purify water for the astronauts aboard the Space Shuttle Orbiters.

How do I know which water softener to buy? ›

A quick way to determine the best size water softener for your house is to calculate the average number of gallons your household uses in a day. You can determine this number by multiplying the number of people in your household by the average number of gallons used per day (usually around 75).

How much is a good quality water softener? ›

You can expect to pay between $500 and $6,000 to have a whole-house water softener installed, depending on the type of system you choose, your system's capacity, and your water hardness.

What is better than a water softener? ›

If your goal is only to reduce the presence of harmful contaminants, a water filter is a better solution than a water softener. When your home's water is run through a quality whole house water filter, you are reducing harmful contaminants like chlorine, chloramines, harmful VOCs, and more.

Is it better to shower with hard or soft water? ›

The minerals in hard water can also change the pH balance of your skin, weakening it as a barrier against harmful bacteria and infections. Soft water is much better for your hair and skin, and soap will lather better with soft water than with hard water.

Is soft water good for kidneys? ›

This study suggests that, in the preventive approach to calcium nephrolithiasis, the extra meal intake of soft water is preferable to hard water, since it is associated with a lower risk for recurrence of calcium stones.

Which is safer to drink hard or soft water? ›

The bottom line. Most people can safely drink hard or soft water with no side effects. Higher sodium levels in soft water may be a concern for some people, but that can be managed with a potassium-based softening system.

How long should a water softener last? ›

Water softeners can last 10 to 20 years, depending on the type and quality you buy. On average, a single tank electric water softener could last you up to 12 years, while a Kinetico system can last as many as 20 years. However, no appliance lasts forever.

Is Costco water softener worth it? ›

Our verdict: almost definitely not. There's nothing inherentlywrongwith the water softeners sold by Costco, but 1) the units are very expensive and 2) there's a lack of brand variety. You might think that, because you have a Costco membership, everything you buy there is going to be cheaper than anywhere else.

Are some water softeners better than others? ›

The difference between a good water softener and a bad one is the efficiency in which these hard water minerals are removed. High-efficiency softeners use much less salt and water needed to regenerate, reducing waste and energy costs. Ion exchange is the only way to truly soften water.

Are big box store water softeners any good? ›

Meant to be low-priced in a mass market, big box store water softeners are basic, inefficient at times, non-customizable and you may not get the quality, longevity, functionality, or service and maintenance that you had hoped for. Low-quality materials and parts.

Why are states banning water softeners? ›

Agriculture depends on the use of repurposed water for irrigation but high-sodium water is detrimental to crops. The ban on water softeners is to preserve the integrity of our wastewater so that it can be used for agriculture.

Can bacteria grow in a water softener? ›

There will be bacteria in your water softener, but it is not harmful bacteria. Bacteria are found everywhere – particularly in substances where there are minerals, such as water. They are completely harmless and, in a lot of cases, help us to function as living things.

What water softeners are made in the USA? ›

WaterBoss water softeners are proudly made in the U.S.A. Our team uses advanced injection molding technology, laser welding, and precision robotic assembly. Every water softener receives a full system test prior to shipment. WaterBoss supports our products with a factory-trained and factory-based customer support team.

What should I ask about my water softener? ›

8 Water Treatment Questions to Ask a Pro Before Buying a Water...
  • Why do I need a water softener? ...
  • How do I know how hard my water is? ...
  • Do saltless systems work? ...
  • Will we ever run out of soft water to shower, especially when we have company over? ...
  • How long do water softeners last? ...
  • What maintenance is required?

Does it matter what water softener you use? ›

The type of salt you use in your water softener does make a difference. While all salts will soften hard water, pellet salts will do so more efficiently because they are purer.

What is the average size water softener for family of 4? ›

In general, a 32,000 or 33,000 grain water softener will suit most families of four.

What is the labor cost to install a water softener? ›

For traditional, whole-house water softener systems, labor rates typically run between $150 and $600 for installation. The cost could go even higher if the installation is complex and new pipes need to be run to account for the new system.

What is the downside of a water softener? ›

The major disadvantage to softening water is the potential health risks for people that might be on low sodium diets. The exchange of hardness minerals for sodium adds 7.5 milligrams per quart for each gpg of hardness removed. In addition, calcium and magnesium are eliminated from the homeowner's diet.

Can you drink softened water? ›

Can I Drink Softened Water? While most softened water is perfectly safe to drink, the amount of sodium in the treated water will depend on the hardness of the original water. If the water hardness is below 400 ppm calcium before you soften it, then you can drink it with little concern.

Which is better water softener with or without salt? ›

The choice is clear—only a salt-based water softener is proven to provide softer water, healthier skin, and no scale buildup or soap scum. A salt-based system is a better investment.

Do you need a shower filter if you have a water softener? ›

Shower filters soften the water? False. A shower filter will not soften water in the way a traditional softener does, but it will remove chlorine and other chemical contaminants, making the water much less harsh and leaving your skin and hair feeling significantly softer.

Why is soft water a problem for plumbers? ›

Soft water may leach heavy metals from pipes and appliances and makes using it as drinking water, or water for cooking, undesirable on a frequent basis.

Is soft water better for your hair? ›

Because soft water can penetrate the hair follicle more fully, it generally helps hair look shinier, softer, and less damaged. In addition to being gentler on your hair, soft water lathers more quickly and easily so you don't need to use as much product as you would with hard water.

How do you keep your hair healthy with hard water? ›

4 Ways to Prevent Hard Water Damage to Your Hair:

Install a water softener. Wash your hair with purifying shampoos and conditioners. Use hair masks or treatments regularly. Massage your scalp when you shampoo.

Is soft water hard to rinse off soap? ›

If you normally use hard water, you may find that washing your hands in soft water feels more slippery. This is because soap lathers more easily in soft water and less soap is required to clean your hands than when using hard water.

Who should not drink softened water? ›

There are two specific situations where the use and drinking of softened water is inadvisable. These are: In the reconstitution of infant formula powders, as softened water could affect its fine nutritional balance, or; For anyone on a medically prescribed low sodium diet.

Can dogs drink softened water? ›

Soft water is safe for pets to drink in most cases. People are sometimes worried that softened water contains too much salt for pets' diets, in fact, no salt is added to softened water. Salt is used to soften the resin that acts on the water in a Harvey water softener, but it doesn't enter the water supply.

Is soft water good for your heart? ›

“Several studies in the past decade have suggested that the death rate from coronary disease is inversely correlated with the hardness of the local water supply: the harder the water, the lower the coronary rate.

Can soft water cause stomach problems? ›

General Consensus. The bottom line is that water-softening systems are safe. Most people can drink hard or soft water with no side effects. Higher sodium levels may be of concern to some; however, drinking bottled water and using soft water only for laundry, dishwashing, and bathing is a simple fix.

Why does soft water feel slimy? ›

Soft water replaces those magnesium and calcium ions with sodium ions. The result is soft water, loaded with salt. The salt is what makes the water feel slimy. After you buy a water softener, you might feel slimy and slippery after you take a shower, like you haven't gotten all the soap off of you.

Can you water grass with softened water? ›

Soft water is still a viable option for watering your lawn, but you'll need to mitigate your yard's sodium buildup with agricultural gypsum. Gypsum can break down any buildup on plant leaves and roots, allowing your plants to absorb water more effectively.

How long does a 40 lb bag of water softener salt last? ›

On average, a family of four with average water hardness will use roughly one 40-lb bag of salt each month. If this applies to your current situation, maintain a half-full tank of salt.

How often should you flush your water softener? ›

Besides adding salt to your softener and occasionally cleaning out the brine tank, most water softener manufacturers recommend that you service your softener annually.

How often should you clean your water softener tank? ›

Water softeners don't typically need to be cleaned yearly, despite their constant usage. However, you should clean them every five to 10 years. If your water softener is older than 15 years; however, you will likely need to clean it every year or so.

How long does a Morton water softener last? ›

Just like any other appliance, a water softener will only last for so long. Eventually, components break, electrical problems occur, and it just stops working. While they can last much longer if well maintained, water softeners have a typical lifespan of between 10 and 15 years.

Are water softeners hard on water heaters? ›

Soft water can actually corrode the water heater anode faster. When the anode wears down, the corrosive elements will move on to the tank. So if left alone, a water softener system can actually shorten the lifespan of a water heater.

Is bigger better for water softener? ›

While an oversized water softener will certainly have the capacity needed to make sure that every gallon of water you use is appropriately treated for hardness, going too big can result in channeling, which can be less effective and efficient at low flow rates.

Are new water softeners more efficient? ›

If your family size changes you may want to consider changing your unit out to ensure you aren't wasting money. Also, the latest water softening technology is more efficient and environmentally friendly. Maybe your unit is working correctly but is nearing, or past, its lifespan.

Does hard water cause kidney stones? ›

Kidney stones have many causes and are not only due to water quality. However, studies have shown a significant risk increase when consuming hard water. Research also says that staying hydrated is one of the best ways to reduce your risk.

What is the typical lifespan of a water softener? ›

Water softeners can last 10 to 20 years, depending on the type and quality you buy. On average, a single tank electric water softener could last you up to 12 years, while a Kinetico system can last as many as 20 years. However, no appliance lasts forever.

What are the signs of a bad water softener? ›

Signs Your Softener Isn't Working Properly
  • Scale buildup inside water-using appliances.
  • Reddish/yellowish stains around drains and faucets.
  • White crust buildup on faucets.
  • Mineral spots in bathroom and on dishes.
  • Clothes feel scratchy and the color is fading.
  • Lower water pressure in the shower.

Can you buy too big of a water softener? ›

Is an Oversized Water Softener Bad? While an oversized water softener will certainly have the capacity needed to make sure that every gallon of water you use is appropriately treated for hardness, going too big can result in channeling, which can be less effective and efficient at low flow rates.

Which is better for water softener crystals or pellets? ›

The pellets are definitely superior when it comes to salt pellets vs. salt crystals. Although they're pricier than their crystal counterparts, they can be used as-is without further processing. On the other hand, salt crystals need to be ground down into a fine powder before adding to your softener.

Should you drink softened water? ›

Soft water is also very safe to drink for most healthy humans. People tend to be concerned about the elevated sodium levels characteristic of soft water. In reality, soft water only contains slightly more sodium and does not approach levels harmful to healthy adults.

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