Water softeners perform an extremely important job, removing minerals such as calcium and magnesium from the water in your home. 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. If your water softener was installed more than a decade ago, replacing it may be the right option.
How long a water softener lasts will also depend greatly on how much it is used, which is dictated by the quality of your home’s water. If you are softening extremely hard water or well water with iron, your equipment may need to be replaced sooner.
As there is no definite time of when you should replace a water softener, it is important to learn how to spot the signs of your water softener starting to fail.
What are the Signs Your Water Softener Isn’t Working Properly?
There are several sure-signs that your home’s water softener isn’t producing the quality of water you’d expect. There might be a certain component that can be replaced, you may need to replace the media, or you simply forgot to add salt in the brine tank. Valves can become jammed or the softener could require cleaning. If you’re unsure of the problem, contact your local residential water treatment experts and have them look at your situation.
Here are four things to watch for, that could indicate your water softener needs to be serviced or replaced.
1-NOT ENOUGH LATHER
One of the vital signs of hard water is soap refusing to lather. If you notice that you are having a hard time soaping up in the shower, you may need to check your water softener. You may notice that you are going through shampoo and soap a lot faster than usual, as you need to use more to make a decent lather.
Washing your clothes in hard water can make them stiff and scratchy. Fabric softener can counteract this stiffness to some extent, but a more effective solution is to make sure your water softener is functioning properly to effectively remove the minerals that are making the clothes stiff.
Hard water can damage a washing machine as well as other appliances such as hot water heaters and dishwashers. To protect those appliances, it is important to check to make sure your water softener is functioning properly.
3-CRUSTY BUILDUP AROUND PIPES AND FAUCETS
The minerals that are naturally present in hard water can cause a crusty build-up around your pipes and faucets. Pay attention to your faucets when you are cleaning the kitchen and bathroom. If you notice a chalky substance building up around them, this could be a sign that you need to take a look at your softener.
4-YOUR WATER TASTES DIFFERENT
Hard water tastes different than soft water. Some people prefer the smooth taste of soft water and will notice if the water supply to their home begins to have increased mineral content. If you’re drinking water straight from the tap, pay attention to changes in taste, as it could mean your softener needs to be serviced or replaced.