Why treat hard water?

Hard water has excess levels of minerals such as calcium and magnesium, to the point where it can damage your home’s piping, and will leave a film on everything it touches, decreasing the effectiveness of soap while bathing (soap won’t lather very much) and while washing clothes/dishes (may leave whites looking gray and dirty, and dishes may have a film), requiring more soap and detergent to be used. Hardness levels are measured, according to the US Dept. of the Interior and Water Quality Association, as follows:

Grains per GallonWater Condition
< 1.0Soft
1.0 – 3.5Slightly Hard
3.5 – 7.0Moderately Hard
7.0 – 10.5Hard
10.5 +Very Hard
Hard Water

A map depicting the average water hardness levels across the US.

As we can see, for example, the hardest waters can be found in streams in states like Texas and New Mexico, and Wisconsin generally has harder water than the east coast. Even if your home receives water from Lake Michigan, by the time that water travels through pipes to the suburbs, starting with a moderate hardness right out of the treatment plant, that water could be hard to very hard coming out of your faucets. This is where a good water softener comes into play.

What is Solar Salt used for?

Solar salt is a very pure form of salt used for treating hard water, made by evaporating sea water, and often with a purity of 99.6%. The more pure the salt, the less impurity buildup there will be in your water softener tank, and the less frequently you’ll have to clean it.

The process that occurs during the water-softening process is essentially this: the sodium molecules replace the hard minerals in the water, leaving behind what you don’t want running through your pipes, and leaving you with better water, and cleaner kids! So after this process you can expect:

  • Your water will taste better, and not smell
  • Your skin will feel better, and you’ll likely have less bad hair days
  • Your shower won’t feel slippery
  • You’ll need to use far less soap and detergent

How often should your water softener be refilled with Solar Salt?

This will vary depending on the natural hardness of your water and the amount of water your household consumes. For a household with “hard” water, and four people, expect to use an average of one 40 pound page of solar salt per month, if your system has the standard nine inch diameter softening tank. This amount will also vary if there is more than two parts per million of iron in your water, or if it is “very hard”.