Why Are Water Softeners So Expensive?
If you are thinking about installing a water softener, you may have heard that they are expensive. The cost of water softeners can vary depending on the quality of the system, the size of your home, and whether you want to install one yourself or have a professional do it for you.
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A salt-free water conditioner can be a good alternative to a salt-based softener. These systems use plastic beads that attract magnesium and calcium ions. These types of water conditioning systems can be a lot less expensive than conventional water softeners. However, they are a little harder to maintain. The filters need to be replaced at least once or twice a year. These types of systems are growing in popularity because they are zero-waste, meaning you won’t have to buy salts.
The average consumer uses about 80 to 100 gallons of water a day. A three-person household uses about 300 gallons. Larger homes, especially those that require a high degree of water usage, may require a higher-efficiency water softener.
In addition to the initial costs of a water softener, you will also need to pay for yearly testing of the water. You should also expect to pay for any plumbing work, such as rerouting the plumbing line or trenching a new pipe. If you don’t have the right skills, a plumber can do the installation for you. If you have the knowledge and the necessary tools, you can do it yourself.
Most of the time, water softeners are installed professionally. This can help to prevent any additional plumbing issues, which can cost more than the installation itself. A professional will also be able to give you a better idea of what you need to do to keep your softener running well.
The most expensive types of water softeners can be serviced only by authorized dealerships. In addition, the parts of these water softeners are made by a specific company and are a bit more expensive. Unlike budget-oriented options, a premium-quality water softener should last for 10 to 15 years or more, depending on how often you run the unit.
There are many different kinds of water softeners to choose from, including salt-based, non-electric, and reverse osmosis. Each type has its pros and cons. The most common type, a salt-based water softener, has a brine tank filled with salt. This salt attracts calcium and magnesium ions and removes them from the water. During regeneration, the unit uses about 100 gallons of water.
The biggest downside of a salt-based water softener is that it requires regular regeneration cycles. This process removes about 3,650 gallons of wastewater a year. The recurring costs of this system are not worth the savings in water conservation. A higher-efficiency non-electric option can be a good alternative, but the yearly maintenance and repair costs are much higher than a salt-based softener.
If you are worried about hard water damaging your shower head, toilet, or other water-using appliances, a softener might be the solution you’ve been looking for. It can also help you avoid early replacement of these devices, which can be expensive.