It’s no easy job keeping mineral deposits out of your water supply. But someone has to lest you be left with damaging hard water conditions.
Well, in this case, that someone is a something, i.e., your home water softener. It’s a fulltime job, but one made so much easier with ongoing maintenance. Assuming you have one, you are likely very familiar with the regular task of adding softener salt to the brine tank. Yet you might be wondering exactly how often salt needs to be added, and what happens if you forget.
How Often Should Salt Be Added?
While the brine tank should always be adequately salted for maximum effectiveness, the exact amount hinges on three key factors:
- Amount of hardness in water. In homes with extra hard water, the softener must capture more hardness minerals, requiring more brine solution. This means more frequent salt refills.
- Household water usage. The more water your family uses, the more water must be treated by the water softener. Even if family size doesn’t change, there might be instances where you’ll need to add salt more frequently than normal, like when family or friends pay extended visits. If you have school-age children, water usage is likely to increase during the summer months, as well.
- Brine tank size. The bigger the tank, the more salt it can hold, which thus allows for less frequent refills.
What If I Forget to Add Salt?
Simply put, without the proper concentration of brine to recharge the resin media inside the tank, a water softener will become less effective at doing its job. When that happens, you’ll start noticing the telltale signs of hard water, like residue around fixtures and faucets and the need for more detergent, soap, and shampoo. If not addressed, hard water can begin to damage water-using appliances, including the water softener itself. To ensure this doesn’t happen, routinely monitor the salt level and add more as needed to ensure the brine tank is always at least 1/3 full (some manufacturers recommend keeping it half full).
At Connor Plumbing, we offer maintenance and repair services for all types of water treatment systems, including water softeners. We also offer expert installation, with the right system for every water quality condition. Contact us today and let us know how we can ensure you have the best in-home water possible.