Frequently Asked Questions
- Doesn’t my municipality already treat and test my water?
- Isn’t bottled water better for you than tap water?
- Don’t water filters remove important minerals from my water?
- What exactly is soft water?
- How Much Does a Water Softener Cost?
If your water comes from a public or municipal water system, it is regularly tested for contaminants regulated by federal standards, such as microbial pathogens, radioactive elements and organic and inorganic toxic chemicals. However, it is important to note that these tests are conducted at the source. Therefore, the quality of water that utilities create is not necessarily a measure of the quality that reaches your home. Over time pipes age and erode, and often water treatment or distribution systems are breached by unforeseen occurrences that result in boil water alerts.
Most municipalities address the issue of delivery to the home by treating water with chlorine to kill bacteria. However, their goal is to meet minimum federal requirements. Chlorine is commonly used to kill organic material in water thereby protecting the public from diseases such as typhoid, cholera and dysentery. It is also great for neutralizing color and odor. Unfortunately, it has come to light that the byproducts of chlorine can cause serious health problems. These by-products have made headlines and research to establish your own comfort level with each is important.
Taking charge of your own water with a municipal water solution eliminates your risk of dependence on third party providers and allows you to specifically remove the health risks that concern you.
Federal standards for bottled water are no stricter than standards for tap water. That means that federal regulations only require bottlers to test for a handful of the hundreds of known chemical contaminants. But there are other issues to consider such as cost, convenience and usability. It is a lot less expensive to own your own Drinking Water Station when you consider the time and costs associated with bottled water. Also, your drinking water system will allow you to use the water for many purposes including cooking without rationing. Treating your own water at home will eliminate the need for storing bulky plastic bottles and supply you with unlimited water, right on tap, at prices per litre that are much less than buying bottled water.
Another issue is that the use of bottled water is environmentally questionable when one considers the unnecessary costs of plastic generation, product transportation and empty bottle waste/recycling.
Studies have found that minerals in your drinking water make essentially no contribution to your health and may even be present in forms your body can’t absorb. Minerals in an inorganic state flow through our systems versus minerals in an organic state that are readily absorbed by our bodies. You are much better off maintaining a balanced diet that provides you with an adequate supply of important vitamins and minerals.
However, for those who do want to add healthy mineral into their drinking water, or if you’d just prefer the flavor of water with a bit of mineralization, water filtration companies offer the Mineral cartridge which can be included in the Drinking Water Station.
Make sure you choose the high quality materials.
Water very commonly contains hardness elements such as magnesium and calcium, dissolved rock, hence the description of hard water. Soft water is when these minerals are removed through a process known as ion exchange. If you have hard water, you may see staining or scaling build up on your sinks, tubs, showers and clothing; scaling deposits on your glassware; and damage due to scale in your pipes and appliances. You will also notice less lather from your shampoos/soaps and a filmy dryness feeling on your skin. Often, types of skin irritations are tied to hard water. All of these are symptoms of the need for softened water.
Hard water can also produce a rock-like scale that builds up in pipes, water heaters, plumbing fixtures, dishwashers and other water-related appliances. This scale will reduce water flow, clog valves and vents and create maintenance problems reducing the life of your appliances.
The average cost of a water softener is around $3000 for a base model, but some of the larger models the companies offer can cost as much as $8,000 or more. Your tech should test the water and measure the size of your home, check on the number of faucets you have and find out how many people there are in your household. If you have a larger than a normal house or have more contaminants, you’ll need a larger water softener.
Water softeners work effectively but may not be right for your home.
If the tech determines that you need more power than an ion or base model can provide, he or she will recommend one of the more advanced water softeners.
How Much Does Installation Cost?
At least $200 to install one of the base units. If you need one of the larger water softeners, it can cost up to $1000 to install it. This cost includes any special parts needed in the installation process and the labor used on the job.