What sort of salt could I use for my Water Softener?
For Water Softening, three types of salt are generally sold :
- Rock salt
- Solar salt
- Evaporated salt
Rock salt as a mineral occurs naturally in the ground. It is obtained from underground salt deposits by traditional mining methods. It contains between 98 to 99% sodium chloride and a water insolubility level of about 0.5-1.5% being mainly calcium sulphate. Its most important component is calcium sulphate.
Solar salt as a natural product is obtained mainly through evaporation of seawater. It contains eighty five percent sodium chloride. It has a water insolubility level of less than 0.03%. It is usually solid in crystal form and sometimes solid in pellets.
Evaporated salt is obtained through mining underground salt deposits of dissolving salt. The moisture is then evaporated, using energy from natural gas or coal. Evaporated salt contains between 99.6 – 99.99% sodium chloride.
Rock salt contains a lot of matter that is not water-soluble. As a result, the softening reservoirs have to be cleaned much more regularly.
Rock salt is cheaper than evaporated salt and solar salt, but reservoir cleaning may consume a lot of time and energy.
Solar salt contains a bit more water-insoluble matter than evaporated salt. When one makes a decision about which salt to use, consideration should be given to how much salt is used, how often the softener needs a cleanout, and the softener design. If salt usage is low; the products could be used alternatively.
If salt usage is high, insoluble salts will build up faster when using solar salt.
Additionally, the reservoir will need more frequent cleaning. In that case, evaporated salt would be recommended.
It is generally not harmful to mix salts in a Water Softener, but there are types of softeners that are designed for specific water softening products.
When using alternative products, these softeners will not function well. Mixing evaporated salt with rock salt is not recommended as this could clog the softener reservoir.
It is recommended that you allow your unit to go empty of one type of salt before adding another to avoid the occurrence of any problems.
Salt in usually added to the reservoir during regeneration of the softener. The more often a softener is regenerated, the more often salt needs to be added.
Usually Water Softeners are checked once a month. To guarantee a satisfactory production of soft water, the salt water should be kept at least half-full at all times.
Before salt starts working in a Water Softener, it needs a little residence time within the reservoir since the salt is dissolving slowly. When one immediately starts regeneration after adding the salt to the reservoir, the water softener may not work according to standards. When water softening does not take place, it could also indicate softener malfunction or a problem with the salt that is applied.