Water Softening 101. What you need to know.

Choosing the Proper Water Treatment System.

When looking for a water treatment system it pays to do your research.  There are many different makes, models, features and claims to performance, warranty and reliability by manufacturers, distributors and dealers (franchise and independent).  All of this information can be difficult to sort through, very confusing and at times very misleading for the consumer.  We will attempt to help clarify some of this information and give unbiased advice to help you in your decision making process. 

The first thing to be aware of is a water softener is not the cure all too every water treatment application or problem.  Water softening has become a generic term that really encompasses all water treatment systems.  Including water softeners, iron, manganese, hydrogen sulfide filtration systems, carbon filters and other water treatment equipment for a myriad of water related problems such as hardness, iron, hydrogen sulfide, manganese and PH, these are just the basic water treatment application concerns.  There are many different types of iron, some bound by organics in the water, others bound by particulates that can make it difficult to remove iron.  Low PH water (acidic) can wreak havoc on every water treatment applications.  Some “smells” in water can confound the most seasoned water treatment experts still.  To add to this any water analysis is in reality only a “Snap Shot” in time as water chemistry can change seasonally.  The Hydrological Cycle affects the water table across the globe.  Consequently water tables change with each season, drought conditions, heavy rain, spring thaw/runoff, (which regenerate water tables) can dramatically change the water chemistry in ground water and surface water. The past three years have been a perfect example of this as the water tables in southeast Michigan have changed significantly because of our very rainy springs and summers and the heavy winter snows of 2014.  With this dramatic water cycle much of the water chemistry from private and community wells in Livingston, Oakland, Washtenaw and Genessee counties changed for the worse.  One of the biggest complaints we hear at Beauchamp Water Treatment and Supply when we are in a home, helping people solve their water problems, is their water now smells and they have a lot more iron staining in their home.  Arsenic levels have also risen dramatically and this has become a serious issue for residents particularly in Livingston, Washtenaw and Oakland Counties.

A Proper Water Analysis:
The most important aspect of choosing and sizing the proper water treatment system for your application is a proper water analysis to determine the water chemistry. To see if any “problem water” issues may be associated with the water and the proper application of equipmentneeded.  A complete water analysis should always be the first step in choosing a water treatment system.  There are a myriad of water chemistry problems that factor into the proper water treatment system application.  As stated earlier, hardness, iron, manganese, hydrogen sulfide and PH are just some of the basic water problems involved in sizing and types of equipment needed.  Even after all this it is recommended to have your water tested every 2-3 years to check for bacteria in private wells, see if the water chemistry or household water usage have changed and if adjustments in the water treatment system may be necessary.

If you choose to take this project on yourself or have a water
treatment professional help you a comprehensive water analysis is the most important step and can be done by the water treatment dealer or an independent water lab.  Independent water testing labs such as brightonanalytical.net are generally available in every area.  If problem water issues arise this is where the water treatment professional will take water samples for further testing to determine the correct water treatment approach. They can be an invaluable resource for a comprehensive (third party) water analysis and can test for many things water treatment companies may not be equipped to test for such as arsenic, lead, organics, bacteria and chlorides to name a few.  If your community is on city water or a community well an annual water report is available from your city and on-line at their website. Some local Consumer Confidence Water Reports are available on this blogs home page. 

Do your homework and I recommend getting help from a certified water treatment professional to assure you get it right the first time! Because great water makes life easier and makes for a much higher quality of life!

Here are some helpful links related to well water issues discussed in this blog.

Home Water Testing

Reasons to Test Your Well Water

Protecting the Water Quality of Your Private Well MSU extension.

MI DEQ: Your New Water Well

Michigan DEQ Arsenic Brochure:

Beauchamp Water Treatment and Supply

Good Water, Good Health and Good Days to you and yours!

Ray McConnell
Certified Water Specialist
Beauchamp Water Treatment and Supply
872 S Old US 23
Brighton, MI 48114

Share on :
Water Softening 101. What you need to know.
Water Softening 101.  What you need to know.
Reviewed by Merlyn Rosell
Published :
Rating : 4.5