Do I Really Need a Water Softener or Is an Inline Filter Sufficient?
You need clean water for daily tasks like cooking, cleaning and personal hygiene. Many Winnipeg homeowners consider the question of which is best—a water filter or a water softener? Explore the important differences between inline water filters and whole-house water softeners, the advantages they provide and how to figure out which one is best for your needs.
What Is an Inline Water Filter?
An inline water filter is a point-of-entry filtration system that filters water as it goes into your house. It’s installed on your main water line, removing sediment, chlorine, bacteria and other contaminants from the municipal water supply before it gets to your plumbing fixtures and appliances.
Benefits of Water Filters
If your water comes from a municipal provider, you may ask yourself why you should get an inline water filter. After all, the water has already been cleaned at a water treatment plant. The problem is, many local water supplies barely meet EPA standards, and water may pick up pollutants between the treatment plant and your residence. Here’s how installing a water filter can improve the water in your home:
- Healthier water: Water filters get rid of unsafe microorganisms, carcinogenic materials and other debris for safer, better-tasting drinking water.
- Reduced sediment: Water filters minimize sediment collection in your pipes, appliances and fixtures, protecting them from damage.
- No plastic waste: Inline water filters diminish the need for bottled water, helping create a greener environment.
- Cost-effectiveness: Access to clean, safe tap water saves you from spending extra cash on bottled water and decreases the strain on your plumbing system.
How to Tell if You Need a Whole-House Water Filter
About one-third of American households depend on home treatment systems for top-quality drinking water. Here are some telltale indicators that you need a whole-house water filter:
- Discoloration, unusual taste or nasty smell: If your tap water is anything but absolutely clear, clean-tasting and odor-free, it may be contaminated. Think about adding a filter for your safety.
- Repeated plumbing problems: A whole-house water filter helps decrease plugged pipes, low water pressure and other issues.
- Skin irritation: If you notice anyone in your household is suffering from redness, rashes or other skin issues linked to poor water quality, a whole-house water filter may be useful.
- Past history: Does your local water supply have a background of possible contamination? Using a whole-house water filter can give you peace of mind against potential problems.
What Is a Water Softener?
A water softener takes away calcium and magnesium from the water entering your home. A process called ion exchange works similar to a chemical magnet, replacing these “hard” minerals with sodium ions to “soften” the water.
Benefits of Water Softeners
If you have hard water, this is what you’ll find once you set up a water softener:
- Longer plumbing life span: Soft water decreases scale buildup on faucets, showerheads, dishwashers and washing machines, lengthening their life span and bettering their appearance.
- Clog-free plumbing: Soft water doesn’t cause a hard mineral coating to adhere to your plumbing system, keeping your pipes and faucets flowing smoothly.
- Better soap lathering: Soft water is a good way to make sure cleaning products lather more effectively, generating cleaner dishes, brighter laundry, and softer skin and hair, even when using less soap and detergent.
- Energy savings: A water softener helps your plumbing appliances work effectively for lower power charges.
How to Tell if You Need a Water Softener
Most water resources in North America are considered moderately hard, hard or very hard. You can learn about the quality of your local water by reading your local municipality’s water quality report. In the meantime, here are some clues that you could benefit from a water softener:
- Scale buildup: A white, chalky film on your fixtures and appliances is a sign of hard water, as are the white spots on your dishes, glass shower door and coffee maker. A water softener can help you get rid of this unsightly issue.
- Low water pressure: Showerheads and faucet aerators commonly become badly obstructed by mineral deposits within 18 months of use. Watch for this because it is a result of hard water.
- Dry skin and hair: Hard water hinders soap from rinsing correctly, resulting in irritated skin and brittle hair.
- Frequent appliance repairs: If your dishwasher or water heater fails often due to scale buildup, a water softener may be a worthwhile acquisition.
Do You Need Both a Water Filter and a Water Softener?
Inline water filters and water softeners are two tools that provide valuable benefits, but they perform different jobs. An inline water filter eliminates contaminants and boosts overall water quality, while a water softener specifically targets hard minerals. In some instances, utilizing a water filter and a water softener is necessary. Evaluate your specific needs and water quality to determine the best solution for your household.
Schedule Water Filter and Water Softener Installation in Winnipeg
Winnipeg Supply Service Experts is a respected provider of water treatment solutions in Winnipeg, such as water filters and water softeners from Excalibur. Our team can help you decide if one or both solutions are necessary to help you get the best water quality in your Winnipeg home.