How a Water Softener Works
A standard whole-house water softener works on the principle of ion exchange, called “cation exchange.” It conditions, or “softens,” hard water by substituting sodium chloride (salt) for hard minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and iron.
Ion Exchange Water Softening
The ion exchange water softener is one of the most common tools of water treatment. Its function is to remove scale-forming calcium and magnesium ions from hard water. In many cases soluble iron (ferrous) can also be removed with softeners. A standard water softener has four major components: a resin tank, resin, a brine tank and a valve or controller.
The softener resin tank contains the treated ion exchange resin – small beads of polystyrene. The resin beads initially adsorb sodium ions during regeneration. The resin has a greater affinity for multi-valent ions such as calcium and magnesium than it does for sodium. Thus, when the hard water containing the Calcium and Magnesium Ions is passed through the resin bed, the calcium and magnesium ions adhere to the resin, releasing the sodium ions until equilibrium is reached. The water softener has exchanged its sodium ions for the calcium and magnesium ions in the water.
Regeneration is achieved by passing a NaCl solution through the resin, exchanging the hardness ions for sodium ions. The resins affinity for the hardness ions is overcome by using a highly concentrated solution of brine. The regeneration process can be repeated indefinitely without damaging the resin.
Water Softener Parts Diagram
As shown in the diagram, a typical water softener has a resin (or “mineral”) tank, a brine tank, and some type of control. With a conventional cation-exchange water softener, the house water supply pipe is connected to a control valve and timer at the top of the resin tank. From there, the unconditioned water flows down into the tank, which is filled with plastic-like beads called resin, arranged in columns called “resin beds.”
These beads, typically styrene and divinylbenzene, have a negative electrical charge that attracts the positively charged mineral ions of hard water while giving off sodium ions. Because of this attraction, minerals in the water, such as calcium and magnesium, adhere to the resin beads as the water passes through the tank. By the time the water reaches the bottom of the tank, it is “softened.” This conditioned water is pumped back up through an “outlet manifold” and “riser tube” and then distributed to the house through a cold water pipe.
After a period of time, the resin beads become coated with minerals and must be cleaned or “recharged” to become effective again. The water softeners timer and/or controls automatically run the appliance through cycles to backwash, recharge, and rinse the beads. A control that is designed to recharge based on the amount of water processed is better than a timer that cycles the unit on a schedule because it operates based on need, not time. The result is a savings in energy, salt, and water. For more about controls, see “Water Softener Controls” in the Water Softener Buying Guide.
During a backwash cycle, the flow of water is reversed so that water is forced down the riser tube to the bottom of the tank so that it will flow up through the resin beads in the tank. The unit flushes and expands the resin, washing off the beads and then carrying the minerals out through a drainpipe.
How Water Softeners Work
The best way to learn about how water softeners work is to book one of our demonstrations, youll be able to see softened water in action from your own tap.
In brief, water softeners are designed to remove calcium and magnesium (the cause of scale and scum) from hard water. They are intended to treat the whole house, so are installed where the water supply enters the premises.
Water softening happens through a process called ion exchange, which uses an ion exchange resin. The resin comprises of tiny polymeric beads which are specially formulated so that they can be charged with certain ions. Calcium and magnesium, the causes of scale and scum from hard water, are referred to as ions, and as water passes through the resin, the calcium and magnesium ions swap places with the sodium ions on the resin. Sodium salts, unlike calcium and magnesium, are highly soluble so sodium does not cause scale or scum. When all the sodium ions have been exchanged for calcium or magnesium, the resin must be regenerated by recharging it with sodium ions. This is done by flushing the resin with salt solution (brine).
Softener equipment applies cation resin for softing raw water,its main target is to use cation resin to adsorp (main parts of ),encreasing the hardness of raw water.
1. Users can choose manual operation control system for saving cost.
2. If users using for 24 hours can accord to water using time choosing for rebirth
3. Uses can according to water quality requirement:first grade multi-media filter,which can remove mud,rust,colloid and suspension in water.Second grade activated carbon filter,which can remove color,olfactory,biochemistry organic in water and encrease the left oxygen value and pollution in water.Third grade equiped softener equipment.
4. Effluent water capacity achieves the water supply of national low-pressure bioler.
5. Time control- type;flow control- type.In working ,apply single-tank,double-tank and multi-tank etc. other varied combination method.When choosing,users can choose as their needs.In operation,it has not only automatic function,but also is manual operation.
Water softener for hardness removing
Model I : dual-tank and dual-valve, two tanks running simultaneously and regenerate respectively.
Model II.:dual-tank and single valve,running mode :one tank is running,
the other one is stand-by.
|Model||water output||Resin-tank<mm>||Brine tank
Model III. Single-tank and single-valve(time setting based or flow rate based)
Decide whether complete water softening is necessary.
Just because you have hard water, doesnt mean its necessary to soften it. The techniques used for softening hard water can have adverse effects that outweigh the annoyances of having hard water. If having hard water is something you can work around, consider living with it or making small changes noted in the next method that can improve your lifestyle without going to the expense of putting in a water softening system.
Ion water softeners replace the mineral ions with sodium ions. This makes your chores easier, but since the water has a high salt content it kills plants, makes soil inhospitable to new growth, and can harm bodies of water where the saltwater is deposited.
However, softening your water will extend the lifespan of your plumbing and make chores that involve the use of soap a lot easier.
A good compromise is to attach your water softening system to the hot water line only, so that only half of the water you use is softened with sodium.
Boil your water before drinking it.
You might also want to use boiled water for cleaning your kitchen and bathroom, brushing your teeth, bathing and washing your hair to increase the effectiveness of your cleaning products.
After boiling water for a few minutes, allow it to cool. Visible lime particles will settle on the surface of the water. Scoop off the top layer of particles and discard them before using the water.
Alternately, allow the water to sit longer and the particles will fall to the bottom. Scoop out the fresh water carefully so as to not disturb the settled lime particles. Discard the bottom few inches of water where lime particles remain.