How Much Do Water Softeners Cost?
A water softener is a great way to lower your home’s water heating costs and reduce the buildup of hard-to-remove minerals on surfaces in your house. It also makes your clothes feel softer, and it may even help your hair look healthier. Depending on the size and type of your system, you can expect to pay between $200 and $6,000 for a new softener.
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How much does it cost to install a water softener?
Installation costs vary based on your location, the type of system you’re installing and the complexity of your job. Generally speaking, you’ll need to hire a licensed plumber or contractor to install your system. These professionals can usually complete an average-sized home project in a few hours, but you may need to pay for their time if the job requires complex tools or specialized skills.
When you’re hiring a plumber, ask about their licensing, certifications and insurance to avoid problems with the system later on. In addition, you should hire a company with a good reputation in the area and one that offers service guarantees.
The water hardness in your area can also affect the price of a water softener, so you should get the advice of your local water department before you buy. They can tell you if you have too much or too little mineral content in your water and what kinds of systems are available to treat your water.
Salt-based ion exchange systems work by putting sodium or potassium in the water, which causes the minerals to dissolve into it. The water is then filtered, leaving behind softer, cleaner water. Ion exchange systems are the most common, but you can also find other types of water softeners – like those that use reverse osmosis or magnetic methods to remove impurities from your water supply.
These systems can be as simple as a small under-the-sink unit or as large as a whole-house system. You’ll need to determine the amount of water you use daily (or how many people live in your home) before you can determine what size water softener will best fit your needs.
Choosing the right size of system is important because it will save you money in the long run. To do this, you’ll need to calculate the gallons per person in your household, the number of grains of hardness in your water and then multiply this total by the grain capacity of the system you’re considering.
Most water softeners have a minimum grain capacity of 50 gallons, but you can choose to install a larger unit if you need more softened water for washing or drinking. The cost of a large unit can be more than an average-sized one, so you should consider your water usage carefully when shopping around for the best model.
The ion exchange process in most salt-based softeners requires the brine tank to be filled with salt, so you’ll need to top it up each time your water needs a refresher. You can also use potassium, which works almost as effectively in the ion exchange process but is less expensive than salt.