Water Softeners

Water Hardness is the most common water problem whether the supply is municipal or a private well.  When this condition exhists soap doesn't lather properly. Hard water doesn't clean as effectively as soft water. In hard water much of the detergent added to the washer goes to soften the water instead of to clean the clothes. This means that more detergent must be used than in soft water. Hard water is rough on your clothes because the calcium and mineral deposits in the water stay in the fabric, causing them to wear faster and fade.  The washed clothes will feel rough and scratchy.  These minerals also trap dirt and soap in the clothing, leaving them looking greyish, yellow and dull. There will also be sticky soap curd and lime scum around bathtubs and sinks; deposits on shower heads and faucets; white spots on glassware, shower doors, and if used to wash cars and windows white spots on those also.  Scale deposits will occur in plumbing especially hot water heater cores and shorten their usability time.  Tea kettle electrodes will become coated and tea will have a scum on top. Skin washed in hard water becomes itchy and dry.

Hardness is actually dissolved calcium (Ca) or limestone and less amounts of magnesium.  If magnesium is high there might be a bitter, astringent taste to the water.  There are many ways used to express the amount of hardness in the water 
  • Parts per million (ppm)  Usually defined as one milligram of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) per litre of water.
  • Grains per Gallon (gpg) Defined as 1 measure -grain (64.8 mg) of calcium carbonate per U.S. gallon (3.79 litres), or 17.118 ppm calcium carbonate.
  • Degrees of General Hardness (dGH)  One degree of General Hardness is defined as 10 milligrams of calcium oxide per litre of water.,
  • mmol/L (millimoles per litre) One millimole of calcium (either Ca2+ or CaCO3) per litre of water corresponds to a hardness of 100.09 ppm or 5.608 dGH, because the molar mass of calcium carbonate is 100.09 g/mol.

The amount of calcium in the water is usually determined by using a hardness test kit.  Our servicemen will help you determine the degree of hardness you have.  Water hardness is classified by the U.S. Department of Interior and the Water Quality Association as follows:


Classification mg/l or ppm grains/gal
Soft 0 - 17.1 0 - 1
Slightly hard 17.1 - 60 1 - 3.5
Moderately hard 60 - 120 3.5 - 7.0
Hard 120 - 180 7.0 - 10.5
Very Hard 180 & over

10.5 & over


Process for treatment of hard water.  There are two processes that are used to treat hard water.  The first is ion exchange.  The second, reverse osmosis is usually used for drinking water only because it is an expensive solution for a whole house water treatment and is therefore not recommended.

The idea behind  ion exchange is simple. The calcium and magnesium ions in the water (which are positively charged)  are removed from solution by sticking to a cation resin which is negatively charged. During the process the calcium/magnesium ions are exchanged for sodium/potassium ions. Since sodium does not prec­ipitate out in pipes or react badly with soap, both of the problems of hard water are eliminated. To do the ion replacement, the water in the house runs through a bed of small plastic beads or through a chemical matrix called zeolite. The beads or zeolite are covered with sodium ions. As the water flows past the sodium ions, they swap places with the calcium and magnesium ions. Eventually, the beads or zeolite contain nothing but calcium and magnesium and no sodium, and at this point they stop softening the water. It will then be time to regenerate the beads or zeolite.

Regeneration involves soaking the beads or zeolite in a concentrated solution of sodium ions. Salt is sodium chloride, so the water softener mixes up a very strong brine solution and flushes it through the zeolite or beads (this is why you load up a water softener with salt). The strong brine displaces all of the calcium and magnesium that has built up in the zeolite or beads and replaces it again with sodium. The remaining brine plus all of the calcium and magnesium is then flushed out through a drain pipe. Regeneration can create a lot of salty water, by the way -- something like 25 gallons (95 liters).

Our water softeners have an automatic regenerating system. The most basic type has an electric timer that flushes and recharges the system on a regular schedule. There is also a vacation setting to prevent regenerations during long absences.


A second type of control our softeners have is a  a patented electronic digital demand module that watches how much water is used. When enough water has passed through the mineral tank to have depleted the beads or zeolite of sodium, the computer triggers regeneration. Automatic bypass during regeneration means continuos water usage.


Backwash and fast rinse times can be customized for optimal filtration in problem water applications.  There is a 6 hour power back up,  a 3/4" valve for plumbing up to 1”, and a 24-Volt Transformer - ENERGY Star® qualified.

Comes in various sizes to meet needs. 1 Tank and 2 Tank models. Contact us for futher information.

ESD 500 Softener ESD 500 Softener
ERR 3500 Softener and Filter ERR 3500 Softener and Filter
1 Tank Models
ESS 1000 Softener ESS 1000 Softener
ECR 3502 Softener and Filter ECR 3502 Softener and Filter
2 Tank Models