Do you need a water softener? Did you know that your water is “hard” if it contains at least 60mg of dissolved calcium and magnesium? In some areas, this number can go as high as 180mg. Defeating the hardness of water is not such a tough challenge but the rewards of it are great.
Hard water can be quite a nuisance, destroying the taps and pipes in your bathroom and kitchen, it can hurt your appliances. Thus, water heaters are now made to withstand hard water.
Presence of hard water in homes is known by:
- Formation of limescale in appliances that produce hot water
- Clogged plumbing
- Cloudy (milky) water in the pools
- Dishes with residues and white spots
- Sticky feel
- Hair that never feels clean after the shower
- Skin feels sticky and dries out
- Lack of foaming when using the soap/shampoo (soap scum seen in the shower)
Water Softener System
Scroll down and check out some of the top Best Water Softeners reviews of 2021 that we have compiled for you based on customer reviews and factors we will discuss later on this post.
SpringWell Futuresoft Salt-free Water Softener
SpringWell Futuresoft salt-free water softener is among the highest rated in the industry. Unlike salt-based softeners that use ion exchange to remove hard water minerals, the Futuresoft softener system uses a physical process known as template-assisted crystallization.
Your hair, skin, clothes, and appliances all enjoy this system and requires no maintenance except for one filter change a year.
The system comes with all the parts needed for install and even includes a bypass valve and a lifetime warranty on all parts and tanks. As below:
- The mounting bracket: useful when attaching it to any wall
- A bypass valve meant to separate piping route from your main pipe
- MNPT fittings: prevent water from leaking out.
- Spanner wrench: use only this tool to tighten the cartridge, the fittings, and the pipes. Otherwise, you risk damaging the plastic body of the device.
- The O-ring: you won’t need to make a hardware store run for it.
- Pre-filter housing and a sediment filter.
- Revolutionary TAC technology that doesn’t require salt and ion exchange
- Extends the life of your appliances
- No more limescale or spotting on glassware and many more
- Excellent value for the money
- All the supplies are in the kit
- More expensive than a typical salt-based water softener
- Testing the water doesn’t show that it’s softened.
Filtersmart Whole House Water Filter System
The Filtersmart Whole House Water Filter System uses the highest quality activated carbon. The filtration is through top-notch carbon media that features select coconut shells. The life of the Jacobi carbon is about 5 years or 1,000,000 gallons of water.
The technology that Filtersmart uses breaks the ions of the water down to microscopic fractions. Say goodbye to replenishing salt to achieve soft water. Since this is a whole house system, you will enjoy soft and purified water from every outlet in your house.
The water filter will battle all of the following:
- Chlorine and chloramine
- Volatile organic compounds
- Synthetic organic compounds
- Herbicides and pesticides
The set comes with the two tanks. There is also a pre-filter system that comes with the set so that all the fine sediment gets removed before the water reaches the tanks. However, you will not find an O-ring in the box, and there’s also no plastic wrench to tighten the bracket. All of these will need purchase on its own.
The installation has to take place right on the main water line for the house. The process is not laborious, and if you have general plumbing skills, you will be able to install it yourself. You must remember not to install the system outdoors if your temperatures drop below zero.
- A combo system that will filter and soften your water
- Top-quality tanks with a lifetime guarantee
- The containers come in two sizes giving you versatility when picking up the spot for installation
- The carbon media is of the highest quality – Jacobi Carbon
- The pre-filter requires a somewhat regular change
- The system will not improve the pH levels of your water
Eddy Electronic Water Descaler – Water Softener Alternative
Why alternative? Because instead of sodium the descaler uses electromagnetic waves to reduce the scaling effects of calcium, magnesium and manganese salts in hard water.
These minerals adhere to the inside of pipes forming limescale deposits. As a result, water flow decreases and the overall lifespan of plumbing systems as well as water heaters, washing machines and other household appliances get shorter.
The box comes with the Eddy Water Descaler along with 4 wires. Installation does not require a plumber as no plumbing changes will occur. No pipes will get detached as all you have to do is:
- Wind the two cables around your incoming cold-water supply pipe – vertical or horizontal does not matter.
- Mount the unit to a nearby wall or panel with the help of the adhesive pads.
- Plug in the red and yellow cables to the main unit.
- Plug in the power supply.
- Check if all lights on the console illuminate.
And you are all set.
- Lifetime guarantee: you get a free replacement if it breaks down
- Does not interact with your water: no salt gets added, the water does not go through resin or filters.
- All the minerals survive.
- Magnetic field: this is the main character and it helps defeat all that nasty buildup
- Cheap to maintain: wipe the dust off of it
- No plumbing changes required
- Not an actual softener: while it will somewhat improve your water, you will not feel it when drinking and washing
- Can’t get installed outdoors: it’s not waterproof
ABCwaters built Fleck 5600sxt Water Softener and Upflow Carbon Filtration – 48000 Capacity
The water softener setup comes with two tanks; one is the mineral tank and the other one is the brine tank. The mineral tank is 10 inches in diameter while the brine tank is 36 inches. One good thing about both the tanks is the 10 years warranty associated with them.
- Digital valve meter
- 48,000-grain high capacity
- Preloaded water softener resin media
- Easy-to-follow installation guide
- Mineral and brine tanks
- Finer resin mesh
- Value-added package
- Upflow carbon and Reverse Osmosis (RO)
- Excellent customer support
- Certified with WQA and NSF standard
- The Fleck technology: this is why you pay the big buck. You get a high-end system which will not only soften your water but will also tell you about it.
- The install kit is rich: very few things missing from the set when you buy it
- Features a bypass valve: no need to think about purchasing that one
- Softens water: Calcium sulfate and Magnesium begone!
- Countdown on the gallons used and remaining
- 10% more cross-link resin
- Good customer care
- The purchase of 2 drains is separate
- Won’t remove iron
- Water will be cloudy for an extended period after installation
Aquasana THD-AS20 SimplySoft 2-Year 20 in. Salt-Free Water Softener by Aquasana
Aquasana THD-AS20 SimplySoft 2-Year 20 in. Salt-Free Water Softener Protects your home appliances and plumbing from the adverse effects of iron and scale buildup and extends the life of your washing machine, water heater, dishwasher, and other appliances. Aquasana SimplySoft is better than just a softener. Unlike salt-based softeners, SimplySoft won’t demineralize your water by chemically removing minerals nor will it put excess salt or chemical waste into our environment.
It extends the life of tankless water heaters, pipes, and appliances by reducing harmful effects of scale buildup Does not require electricity, drainage for wastewater, or complicated salt replacement Low maintenance – lasts 2 years and doesn’t require heavy bags of salt for replacement Will not chemically remove healthy minerals from water
It uses advanced NSF Certified NAC salt-free softening technology to naturally and safely reduce scale buildup in hard water without the use of salt or chemicals.
- Extends the life of tankless water heaters, pipes, and appliances
- No electricity, drainage, or complicated salt replacement needed
- Low maintenance and lasts up to 2 years
- Will not chemically remove healthy minerals from water
Fleck Iron Pro 2 Combination Water Softener Iron Filter
This product will meet any holdbacks you might have about its price. Along with the iron filter, it comes with a variety of capacities. This variation is a 64 000-grain unit, but you can get an 80 000 one – the highest on the market.
It’s equipped with the well-known Fleck 5600sxt, which saves you a lot with annual energy consumption and ease of use. Except for iron, magnesium, and calcium, this softener also removes rust, sediments, and sulfur up to 2ppm. Additionally, the set has a bypass valve and a plastic cone.
It can be set to regenerate either after a certain number of gallons get used up or after a pre-defined amount of time has passed. use the touchpad controls on top of the iron filter.
The resin itself will last for some 5+ years. It, of course, depends on the usage rate and the number of people you have in your family. Replacing it with a new one (not the family) will set you back some a 3-digit amount. This is not outrageous if you do it once every 6 years or so.
- Proven valve brand: The Fleck 5600sxt digital metered valve makes a difference
- Also filters out iron: not just your regular water softener
- An 80 000-grain model is available
- Includes a bypass valve
- Resin will last for at least 5 years
- Installation instructions aren’t clear: many people can’t cope with making it through the instruction sheet. Get help.
- Not very cheap: even though the value is good thanks to the presence of an iron filter, the price is still substantial.
- The plastic piece gets used up to 100%
Aquasana Whole House Water Filter with Salt-Free Softener
The Aquasana Whole House Water Filter and Salt-Free Softener coats hard water molecules without the negative effects of using salt to make your water safer. What’s more is that this complete system got designed to remove harmful contaminants, like chlorine, pesticides, and herbicides. This particular model can remove up to 97% of the chlorine from city water.
This model is a little heavier and larger than others on the market, weighing in at 16 pounds and measuring in at 54 inches, but it’s still possible to mount this model above the floor. However, you should note that because it’s a complete filtering system, your water flow rate may drop to 7 gallons per minute. This flow rate will provide enough power to run 2 showers, a dishwasher, and the kitchen faucet all at the same time
This model requires a filter change at least once every six months, but the filters aren’t that expensive. You will also need to replace the polyphosphate material the model uses every 5 years or so.
- Capacity: 1,000,000 gallons
- Flow rate: 7 GPM
- Dimensions: 9 x 46 x 54 inches
- Warranty: 6 years
- Long warranty
- Total filtration
- Removes 97% of chlorine
- It is heavy
- Reduces water pressure
Pelican 3-Stage Water Filtration & Softener Alternative Combo EZ-Connect 20″
It comes with scale reduction, improved cleaning/housekeeping and subjective improvements in personal care without the use of salt. The Pelican Water Filtration and Softener System got designed for 1-3-bathroom homes. That means that if your home is bigger than that, this might not be the best choice for you.
With a flow rate of 10 gallons per minute, the Pelican system also doesn’t strip the beneficial minerals from the water, and you won’t get a slippery feel after the water gets treated. It’s also made out of stainless steel, which will resist staining, rusting and oxidizing.
- Capacity: unlimited
- Flow rate: 10 GPM
- Dimensions: 18 x 18 x 49.5 inches
- Warranty: lifetime
- Unlimited capacity
- Lifetime warranty
- Zero wasted water or electricity
- Less reduction in water flow
- Only good for 1-3-bathroom homes
- Doesn’t remove chlorine or kill bacteria
Nuvo H20 DPHB Home Salt Water Softener System
The Nuvo H20 DPHB Water Softener System is a decent, efficient one. You get what you pay for. So, if you are looking for a basic, but a reliable solution, here is what Nuvo H20 DPHB can offer for its modest price.
- It has a salt-free cartridge.
- It will improve your water’s quality notably – the taste will be better and corrosion will get reduced.
The gallons per minute are between 12 and 15. This is a pretty good rate and shows you that the unit doesn’t slow down your water flow. The life of the cartridge is usually up after 50 000 gallons. This means that a family of two will be able to use it for 6 months without replacing it.
The set contains everything you need to mount the unit. It also features a bypass valve. Besides, it has compact dimensions and a sufficient flow rate – 12-15 GPM. Not least, the installation is easy
- Decent value: meaning you get what you pay for.
- Water’s quality improves: your skin and taste buds will enjoy this newly softened water
- No salt: that’s a salt-free softener
- Installation is easy
- The set contains everything you need to mount the unit
- The flow rate is good: 12 to 15 GPM
- Cartridges will need changing relatively often every 50 000 gallons
- Can’t work alone when processing well water
- The inlets might require connectors with the proper diameter
- Very plain product: don’t expect wonders from it
Aquasana EQ-SS20 SimplySoft Salt-Free Water Conditioner
This Aquasana product got designed for tankless water heaters, but you can also install it in your water line to use for full home water softening. While this budget pick is a great option, it’s only designed to last for two years, which means you’ll have to spend this money again if it breaks. , the model lasts longer for the two years, so you could just get away with updating the filters and such to make sure it lasts.
The Aquasana EQ-SS20 SimplySoft Salt-Free Water Softener is a light, 13.1 pounds which will make it easy to maneuver and manage during installation. Its flow rate is around 7 gallons per minute, which should be plenty for the needs of a normal household. The simplest media can last up to six months or 50,000 gallons.
- Capacity: 50,000 gallons
- Flow rate: 7 GPM
- Dimensions: 14 x 5 x 23 inches
- Warranty: 1 year
- Flexibility in how it’s used
- Decently high capacity
- Short warranty
- Short product life
- Lower flow rate
We get rating capacity of salt-free water softeners by rating the grain count, or the number of minerals grains that it removes before it flushes the remaining material.
Water flow rate
Some systems limit the water flow as it passes through the system, which means that a low flow could reduce water pressure if you’re using water in more than one location
Water softeners vary in size. You will need to carefully consider if you have the space for the unit you’re looking at. Every unit will contain dimensions—don’t forget to read those and measure twice and check again.
Before you get to shopping for a best water softener consumer reports, you should consider testing how hard your water is. This is because you need to select a model that’s capable of softening your home’s hard water. Testing your water also can illuminate you to potential other issues that you’ll want to make sure your softener can remove, such as chlorine or bacteria and viruses.