January 19, 2017

Water Softener Parts - Know Exactly What Needs Replacing

Water softeners are used to diminish the negative effects of hard water that may be present in some homes. Eventually you will probably run into problems with your water softener, making it important to know all the different parts of your water softener. The most crucial water softener pieces include the brine tank, the mineral tank, bypass valve, and the central processing unit.

1.The Brine Tank: regularly uses salt water to wash the resin filter. The sodium ions contained in the brine attract the mineral ions, and the water is then flushed out into the sewer system. The brine tank requires more maintenance than other water softener parts. It must be regularly filled in order to maintain the proper functioning of the water softener.


 

2.The Mineral Tank: this is where the resin filter is stored in the water softener. As the minerals are drawn out of the water by the filter, it is embedded with mineral ions. These mineral ions must be swapped with sodium ions to ensure the proper functioning of the water softener. In many water softeners, a filtering system that employs ion exchange removes unwanted minerals from hard water. The water is run over the resin filter, which contains sodium ions. While the mineral tank is recharging, soft water is unavailable unless the water softener is equipped with two tanks.

This resin filter should not need to be replaced during the lifespan of the water softener. The only reason a change may be required, is if standing water was left for several months. This could cause bacteria buildup, and even algae growth if the tank was regularly in direct sunlight. The resin filter can also be damaged by heavily chlorinated water. This can also damage the valves on a water softener, so they should be checked often.

 

3.The Bypass Valve: when in the off position, the bypass valve stops the creation of softened water. This valve is present on almost all types of water softeners. This may be useful when moving, watering plants, repair of the water softener, or even in emergency situations.

4.The Central Processing Unit: This is the electronic powerhouse that controls the machine’s functions. The central processing unit usually consists of three main parts: the valve assembly, a timer, and a meter. The valve assembly is in charge of water regulation, limiting the passage of water between the different parts of the machine.

The timer controls the start of the filtration process, as it regulates when the water softener is turned on. The most majority of water softeners use this electric timer to flush and recharge the entire water softening system on a regular and pre-determined schedule. Soft water is typically not available during the recharging. The last control is the meter, which generally measures water usage, as well as the levels of ions in the resin filter.

The meter is able to automatically trigger regeneration, which begins the process of a brine wash if the levels of sodium ions are too low. Other types of meters use a computer-based system that is able to judge the depletion of resin beads in the system to determine water use. By knowing all the major water softener parts you will have a better idea of what to replace when something goes wrong. If you still can’t figure out what’s malfunctioning, then you will need to have a certified technician come out to have a look.


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