If you have a water softener in your home, you probably love it. It can treat the hard water in your home, helping you protect your house water pipes. Your water might also be more comfortable when you shower or wash your hands.
On the other hand, your water softener does require additional water to regenerate properly. So, how much water does your water softener use? Typically, a water softener will use between 20 and 65 gallons of water during the regeneration process, but the exact amount of water your water softener uses will depend on how much water your household goes through on a daily basis.
Learn more about your water softener’s regeneration process below, and make sure you find the best water softener to meet your needs.
Water Softeners and Regeneration: What Does This Mean?
Your water softener softens your water by removing excess calcium and magnesium ions from the water supply. Your water softener does this using resin beads, which is where the ions are swapped for sodium ions coming from the brine tank (where you put salt).
The resin bed that comes with your water softener will have been fully saturated with sodium ions, which have a positive charge. When calcium and magnesium flow through the resin tank, they will be attracted to the resin bed. Then, they will bind to the resin bed, removing themselves from the water supply. In exchange, the resin bed will release sodium ions.
Eventually, the resin bed will become totally saturated with calcium and magnesium, so it will have to complete a regeneration cycle to get rid of the calcium and magnesium ions it has picked up. Then, the resin bed will recharge itself using sodium ions from your brine tank, and it will be ready to do its job once again.
If your water softener does not go through a regeneration cycle, it will not be effective for very long. This process of discharging calcium and magnesium ions for more sodium ions is called regeneration.
How Often Does a Water Softener Regenerate?
So, how often does your water softening system go through the regeneration process? The answer is that it depends on a number of factors, such as your household water usage. The more water your household uses, the more calcium and magnesium ions your water softener will have to remove from the water supply, which means that it will have to regenerate more frequently.
In addition, the answer to this question depends on the hardness level of your water. The higher your water hardness setting is, the more frequently your water softener will have to regenerate.
Typically, your water softener will regenerate when the resin bed has been saturated between 75 and 80 percent with calcium and magnesium minerals. While the amount of time it will take your water softener to reach this point will depend on a number of factors, you should expect your water softener to go through the regeneration process between two and three times per week.
If you don’t use a lot of water, your water softener may not have to regenerate as often; however, it will probably still have to regenerate once per week, regardless of how much water you use. Otherwise, the resin bed could start to go bad, which could impact not only your water softener but also your health.
How Much Water Does Your Water Softener Use During the Regeneration Process?
As alluded to above, your water softener will probably use between 20 and 65 gallons of water to complete the regeneration process. Of course, there are several factors that will influence how much water your water softener needs to use to completely regenerate. Some of these factors include:
1. The Size of the System and Brine Tank
The first factor that will play a role is the total size of your system. Water softeners come in many shapes and sizes, and you need to work with a professional who can help you find a system that is the right size for your household. You can also take a few minuets and run through our Build Your System Tool for a good estimate.
For example, if your system has a large brine tank and resin bed, then it will require more water to complete the regeneration process. If you are curious about how much water a specific system will require to regenerate, you should speak with an expert before you purchase it.
2. The Hardness Level of the Water Supply
Of course, the overall hardness level of the water supply will also play a role in how much water your system requires. The harder your water is, the more water will be needed to complete the regeneration supply, because there will be more calcium and magnesium ions to discharge. In addition, your water softener will have to go through this process more often.
Before purchasing a water softener, you should test on your water supply to figure out what your water hardness level is. You may be able to get this information from your city, but you might want to get a test kit you can use on your own.
3. The Efficiency of the System
The efficiency of your system, which is dictated by the age of your water softening solution, will also impact the amount of water it requires. For example, if your water softener is older, it may not run as efficiently as it used to. This means that your water softening system might require more water to complete the regeneration process.
In addition, newer models use more advanced technology, so they should be more efficient. If you have a relatively recent water softener system, it might not use as much water when compared to an older system.
4. The Configuration of the System
You also need to think about the configuration of your water softener. For example, if you have a water softener that uses two separate tanks (meaning there are two resin tanks like the DROP Duplex Smart Softener), then it will require more water to complete the regeneration process because it has to purify two tanks. If you have a water softener that only has one tank, then it should not require as much water for the regeneration process.
All of these factors are going to influence how much water your water softener system requires to complete the regeneration process.
Can You Reduce the Amount of Water Your Water Softener Uses?
If you are looking for ways to reduce the amount of water your water softener uses when it regenerates, you probably want to save money on your water bill. You can take a deep breath, as the regeneration process is not going to add a significant amount of money to your water bill at all. Even after your water softener has been installed, you probably won’t notice much of a difference in your water bill.
On the other hand, if you still want to save water, you need to make sure your water softener only regenerates when it is absolutely necessary. The best way to do so is to set your water softener to regenerate automatically. You do not want to be in charge of manual regeneration, as you could end up regenerating your water softener when it is not necessary.
Instead, you need to leave the water softener in control and let it regenerate when it needs to. You probably have a lot to do on a daily basis, and you don’t want to overlook this process.
Find the Best Water Softeners From DROP Today
If you are looking for the best water filters and water softeners, take a look at the selection from DROP. With DROP, you can set your smart softener to “Demand Operation.” This allows your DROP system to measure your water use and regenerate itself when necessary, saving you salt, water, and money. Your smart softener will automatically adjust to heavier or lighter water use.
We would be happy to help you find the best water softener for your home, so shop our products today, and make sure you have a reliable supply of soft water in your home.