You will only understand how lucky You are to live in a city with amazing, soft water, after moving to an area with awfully hard water. Many people take good water for granted. And you might never even realize all the ways that hard water can influence our health, hair, skin and clothes. Most of all – how it can even ruin the pipes in your home and even your household appliances.
Luckily, there are some quick solutions available to easily help turn hard H2O into soft water using a good H2O softener. On this page, you will find the best water softener for home installation options. These are highly recommended options by leading brands with very high customer rating.
This is an extensive guide with suitable options for all types of households. To help you through the maze of different features you will find specific product analysis. For each of the 10 items reviewed you will find the pros and cons. This will help you make the best possible decision.
As this is quite a long review guide, you might want to use the below table fo content to get to the info you need. There are also links provided to check out the best price options available.
Table of Contents
- What Is Hard Water?
- What Does A Water Softener Do?
- Do I Need A Water Softener?
- What Is A Whole House Water Filter?
- Best Water Softener Systems Specifications
- Top 10 Best Water Softener Reviews
- 10. iSpring RCC7 WQA Gold Seal Certified 5-Stage Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filter System – 75 GPD
- 9. Aquasana Rhino Series 3-Stage 300,000 Gal. Whole House Water Filtration System
- 8. Clearwave CW-125 Salt Free Electronic Water Conditioner
- 7. iSpring WGB22B 2-Stage Whole House Water Filtration System w/ 20-Inch Big Blue Sediment and Carbon Block Filter
- 6. Scalewatcher 3 Star Electronic Descaler Softener Alternative
- 5. Dual Whole House Water Filter Purifier with Carbon Block and Sediment Filters
- 4. iSpring ED2000 Whole House Electronic Descaler H2O Conditioner
- 3. ScaleBlaster SB-75 Water Conditioning System
- 2. Fleck 5600sxt The Best Water Softener Salt Based
- 1. Eddy Water Descaler Electronic Softener
- Conclusion: Best Water Softener For Hard Water
What Is Hard Water?
‘Hard water’ simply means that the H2O has more minerals, such as calcium, lime and magnesium, than usual. Hard water is known to cause problems by clogging up pipes and preventing soaps or detergents from dissolving properly in water.
It can also cause a higher build-up of lime scale deposits in your system. This decreases the efficiency of running your hot water tanks. And as a result of that you will have higher costs.
Built up lime scale can also affect your washing machines and air conditioners. As the H2O heats up, lime crystalizes. This then deposits on the appliances and causes clogging and corrosion.
All in all, you definitely don’t want hard water going through your pipes and causing damage. At best it will cost you money. Worse though, it could be damaging your health.
What Does A Water Softener Do?
Simply put, softeners help to remove the overwhelming amount of minerals. They help to reduce and remove ions (calcium and magnesium ones) and collects them in a tank. It then removes them by flushing and draining them away.
There are also different types available based on how much minerals they can extract before they need flushing out. Without sending your tap water for analysis it is difficult to say how hard it is. You might find that your kettle and shower clog up in a matter of weeks. If that is the case then a filtration system is a good solution.
Hardness can also be different based on the actual minerals and sediments. If you can see sediments it is definitely time to have it tested. But the most dangerous stuff you can encounter is completely invisible. They are also very much tasteless.
Let’s take a look some more details.
Do I Need A Water Softener?
There are two aspects to consider. Firstly, hard water will over time cause damage to appliances, showers and pipes. The harder the H2O the more often they are likely to break down. For appliances like dishwashers and washing machines there are products that can help.
Salts and other additives can especially deal with lime scale build up. This will ultimately cause serious damage and you might find that you have to replace appliances a lot sooner than you expected.
Secondly, there is the impact to your health. H2O that is heavy in minerals might not taste much different. But large doses of calcium and magnesium can cause allergies and sickness. The most common health impact is diarrhea. Healthy people will be able to handle even large amounts of calcium and magnesium. But over time this ability might diminish.
If anyone in your household has shown signs of sickness due to the water, then there should be no question. One way to find this is out is to not use any H2O from the faucet. Buy some bottled water and see if that makes a difference.
Your health is the most important decision factor. If you are not showing health effects, then you can ignore it for the short term. In the long term you can develop an inability to handle the large quantities of minerals.
Another common problem is skin and hair irritation. Excessive minerals can cause dry scalps and irritated skin. If these are longer lasting then a softner is the only real solution. There really is no other way to get it purified in large quantities.
You will definitely bring additional expenses for maintenance on yourself.
What Is A Whole House Water Filter?
You can buy small filter systems that attach under a sink. These just filter the water for one tap. This is a good solution if you are just concerned with the health impacts. But this will not solve the problem of your appliances getting clogged.
The better option here is to have a filtration device attached to your mains. This would be at the point where the H2) enters your home. All the water coming in will be filtered before it is distributed. It doesn’t matter where it goes from there. You washing machine and dish washer, as well as your hot water tank. They will all have received pre-filtered H2O.
Best Water Softener Systems Specifications
When it comes to comparing different options, there are some things to focus on. Don’t just jump to a decision and go for the cheapest product. This might help to an extent. But it will likely not solve your problem entirely.
First of all, you need to look at the amount of H2O it can filter per hour. If you have a large household then this will be important. Some cheaper devices will only give you a few gallons per hour. And this is not enough for a large family.
Next is the type of filtration. Some devices work with mechanical filters, others with chemicals. Some do both and others again specifically target only certain sediments. The best thing you can do is get your water tested. This will tell you exactly what types of filters you need.
You can also get devices that use electromagnetism. This might sound like Greek and you don’t need to know how they work. But you do need to know this. If your water is not exceptionally hard, then this is a low-cost solution. Installation is a DIY job and requires very little maintenance.
Top 10 Best Water Softener Reviews
10. iSpring RCC7 WQA Gold Seal Certified 5-Stage Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filter System – 75 GPD
This iSpring model promises quality, safety, and durability. The system incorporates polypropylene sediment (PP), granular activated carbon (GAC), carbon block (CTO), and reverse osmosis (RO) filtration technologies to provide high-quality H2O.
The entire unit fits nicely in most under-sink cabinets. And it comes with a lead-free solid brass body faucet with a brushed nickel finish. The installation is streamlined and DIY for most users, with written, video, and tech support assistance.
iSpring is one of the leading makers of filtration systems. They cover everything from small apartment households to large houses. Even commercial systems are available as an option. The Georgia based company brings all its products to you with the most professional service. Check out the above link button to see what the best available prices are.
- Very long lasting: so you don’t have to replace it regularly
- Streamlined installation: just a few DIY skills needed
- The faucet is very well made: will not break down easily
- Easy to install with a few hour’s time
- Very well made with good, quality products
- Affordable price
- Runs quietly
- Bulky: you will need the space
- Can waste a lot of water
- You can only draw about 2.5 gallons at a time: good for small households.
9. Aquasana Rhino Series 3-Stage 300,000 Gal. Whole House Water Filtration System
This is a saltless softener with a mechanical pre-filter and two chemical filters. The base system requires no electrical connections or drains for the wastewater. It uses a system of filters to remove over 97% of chlorine present in source, in addition to reducing other harmful contaminants such as pesticides, herbicides, rust, sediment, water-soluble metals and industrial solvent.
From large to small devices, this company really offers everything. But their specialty products are whole house systems. All products are US made in Texas, and for the best prices available, check out the button above.
- Saltless softener: no residual taste
- Low maintenance: basically, very little running costs
- Lasts up to 3 years: install and forget for quite a long time
- Removes over 97% of chlorine present
- Works very, very well
- Might cause pressure to drop
- Comes with very little installation instructions
- The adaptors for 1″ to 3/4″ are plastic and not very strong
8. Clearwave CW-125 Salt Free Electronic Water Conditioner
This softener attacks hard water particles with electromagnetic waves, treating the entire system in your home and helping prevent and reduce hard water problems. Works really well in neutralizing scale build-up of calcium and magnesium. Works on both hot and cold systems. Doesn’t need any salt or chemicals to operate.
- Very good product for the price
- Really easy to install: DIY job
- Works really good against calcium and magnesium
- Works on both hot and cold systems
- Doesn’t need any salt or chemicals: no need to regularly top up.
- The mounting tie wraps that come with it don’t work good
- Not suitable for areas with really hard water
7. iSpring WGB22B 2-Stage Whole House Water Filtration System w/ 20-Inch Big Blue Sediment and Carbon Block Filter
Unlike ‘point of use’ systems that are installed to supply H2O to a specific faucet, the WGB22B filters your water from the source. This means water from every output in your home will have passed through the two filtration stages.
The first stage filter removes dirt and other various larger sized particles from the H2O that can clog the following filters. The second stage carbon block filter gets rid of bad tastes and odours. It also removes up to 90% of chlorine from the source, and is highly effective on organic chemicals like pesticides, herbicides, and industrial chemicals.
This really is one of the most fully featured devices. If you have any quantity of pesticides or herbicides then then this is the best option. It really does a fantastic job of removing all unwanted stuff.
- Easy to install: DIY job
- Very sturdy: will not break down easily
- No noticeable change in pressure: everything seems to be unchanged
- Works great for iron
- Noticeably tastier and cleaner
- The carbon filter does not completely remove the sulfur odor
- Need to change the filters every 3 months or so
- The anchor bolts that come with the kit are not suitable for cement
6. Scalewatcher 3 Star Electronic Descaler Softener Alternative
This is a salt-free conditioner that is easy to install and does not require any changes to your plumbing (unlike conventional salt water softeners). It can also be homeowner installed. The electronic unit sends out a computerized modulated signal. This then agitates the calcium and other minerals, causing them to come out of solution and become suspended.
This stops any further build-up of scale by preventing the molecules from adhering to themselves or any other surface. The water’s capacity to dissolve minerals is also increased; therefore, existing scale is dissolved back into the water and gradually removed.
Scalewatcher have some excellent electronic products. This is one of the best products they have and will suite most households. Use the check price button above to find the best deals available.
- Salt-free: no residual taste
- Easy to install
- Does not require any changes to your plumbing
- H2O is cleaner and tastes much better
- Works really well with house appliances
- Visibly less scale build up
- Uses an ecologically responsible method
- Installing the coils can be a bit of a challenge
5. Dual Whole House Water Filter Purifier with Carbon Block and Sediment Filters
This system is excellent for removing chlorine, sediment, odors and many other chemicals and contaminants. The sediment filters in this unit are made of fine melted polypropylene, and remove large and fine particles, such as sand, dirt, silt, and rust particles. The block carbon filters then remove odors and tastes of many organic compounds, chlorine especially.
If you have sediment build-up then this is a really simple and cheap option to get started with. It will not work for really hard water, but it will give a quick fix to an annoying problem.
- Works really well
- Really easy to install
- Really solidly built
- Lasts long
- Noticeably tastier and cleaner
- Filters need to be 2-3 times a year
- The plastic wrench is not so solid
4. iSpring ED2000 Whole House Electronic Descaler H2O Conditioner
This iSpring model solves hard water problems without the need for chemicals, salt, or maintenance. It descales your entire system and prevents scale buildup in pipes. Also works great for tankless heaters. It’s designed for very hard H2O areas (10-19 grains).
As a mid-range system, this ideal for small households. You will almost immediately be able to tell a difference. One way to tell is to descale your kettle before installation and then see how long it stays lime scale free.
- Salt-free solution
- Works great for tankless heaters
- Works great for very hard water areas
- Noticeably tastier and cleaner
- Requires minimal space for installation
- No plumbing or maintenance necessary
- Not expensive
- Doesn’t last too long
3. ScaleBlaster SB-75 Water Conditioning System
This is another good model that solves hard water problems without the need of chemicals or salt. The product requires no maintenance and is simple to install, with no plumbing required. It is also a really good solution for tankless water heaters.
For larger homes, this is probably one of the best priced devices. Customer reviews are extremely good and you will find the best prices available on the above button.
- Easy to install and maintain
- Installation takes only 30 minutes
- Doesn’t need salt or chemicals to operate
- Very good for pipes and house appliances
- Increases pressure
- Water is noticeably better only after few days
- Great for calcium buildups
- Not suitable for areas with really hard water
2. Fleck 5600sxt The Best Water Softener Salt Based
This unit removes calcium and magnesium using ion exchange process. It uses a meter based regeneration process. This means that the H2O you use is measured and the system only regenerates when it needs to.
If water needs increase the system regenerates more often to keep up. The SXT controller offers some great features, including a backlit LCD display, touchpad controls and 48 hour internal power backup. The standard square brine tank included with this system can hold about 250 lbs. of salt.
This is a higher end model, but will deliver among the best results. It is also a favorite with customers and you can see some really good Amazon reviews when you go to the above link.
- Easy to install by yourself
- Salt usage is minimal
- You can fine tune the unit to your specific hardness and usage
- Very well made
- H2O is noticeably cleaner and tastier
- Works wonders for house appliances
- Installing the resin beads seems to be the single hardest task
- The ‘funnel’ that comes with the unit doesn’t really fit the neck of the tank all that well, and is very loose
1. Eddy Water Descaler Electronic Softener
This model is easy for anyone to fit. It requires no plumbing changes and does not require any salt to operate. It produces a complex electromagnetic wave which is applied through two coils placed around your incoming supply pipe.
In this way, your H2O is subjected to an ever-changing magnetic field as it passes through the coils. This alters the adhesion properties of the lime scale so that it no longer deposits itself on surfaces, inside pipework and appliances.
The UK based company makes excellent mid-range products that are available worldwide.
- Easy installation, works with both metal and plastic pipes
- Emulates softened water without altering TDS (keeps healthy minerals)
- Protects plumbing really good
- Works wonders for the house appliances
- Really easy to install
- Does not make your water feel any different or soap lather better
- Does not alter the water chemically
Conclusion: Best Water Softener For Hard Water
If you want the best and cleanest water for your family and your home, you will now understand how much a good water softner can change your life. Your health and the health of your appliances and the pipes in your home will thank you for it.
Any of these top 10 water softner devices are worth investing in but our top recommendation would be the Eddy Water Descaler Electronic Water Softener. It is extremely affordable, does the job well, is easy to install and highly praised by many customers who swear by it.
The worst thing you can do now is to ignore your problem. All the above solutions are easy to install and will not cause major disruptions. With a small upfront investment you will save money in the long run. And your health will likely improve as well.
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