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The difference between water softeners and water conditioners

Hard water contains calcium and magnesium minerals.  Hard water leaves behind deposits of minerals which we most commonly know as limescale.  Limescale deposits not only leave unsightly marks in bathrooms and kitchens, they clog pipework and appliances such as boilers or washing machines become inefficient as limescale coats their heating elements.  Water softeners are becoming increasingly popular, not only because they preserve bathrooms and kitchens, soft water feels great too.  People with dry skin conditions often find softened water relieves their symptons.  Soft water transforms the households’ water experience.


Ion-Exchange Water Softeners

A water softener uses a very simple principle to create soft water.  Inside the water softener is a vessel of resin beads, which when hard water flows over the beads extracts the calcium and magnesium (limescale) in exchange for small amount of harmless sodium ions.  A water softener will carry out a a self-cleaning process, called a regeneration.  The regeneration flushes the hard deposits from the resin bed to drain and refreshes the resin beads, so they are ready to create more soft water.  The principle is called ion-exchange.

You can see Tapworks domestic water softener range.  All our water softeners are automatic and just need topping up periodically with tablet salt.

If you need help choosing which model is right for your application, contact us, we will be happy to help.


Physical conditioners and scale prevention

A physical conditioner does not remove limescale from water, but prevents its build-up on heating elements.  Unlike ion-exchange water softeners physical conditioners do not give the consumer the benefit of softened water.

Physical conditioners work by causing the formation of tiny crystals of scale as the water flows through the device.  When heated the hardness minerals attach to the crystals rather than to the heated surfaces and pipework.

There are many different types of conditioners:

·         Magnetic

·         Electrolytic

·         Electronic (Electromagnetic)

·         Electro-chemical

·         Electro-chemical

The performance of physical conditioners can be variable because the characteristics of the water supply can influence their effectiveness.


Free technical helpline

Tapworks Water Softeners provide a free technical Helpline.

If you have any queries, call us on 01494 480 621. We will be happy to help!