Well water has its benefits. There are over 20 million Americans who one. The best kind of water bill is none. Municipal water is often delivered to homes through corroded and outdated pipes.
Many homes throughout the Topsail area are on wells. Hampstead homes in particular are predominantly on wells.
However, there are some cons to well. Like all groundwater, it is susceptible to pollutants. By not being supplied through a municipality, it falls on the well-owner to regularly monitor the healthiness of the water. Well water is also hard water. The excess of minerals can affect home appliances, cleanliness, and health. There are a number of ways to “soften” water and minimize these effects.
Water softeners work by removing calcium and magnesium from the water. These minerals are positively charged. Water softening systems pass hard water through a mineral tank containing negatively charged beads of polymer resin. This pulls the calcium and magnesium out of the water, rendering it soft. The mineral tank is then flushed with a brine so that the positively charged sodium ions can drive the calcium and magnesium off the beads.
Upkeep on these systems is simple. About once a month, the brine tank should be checked. Checking the brine tank is as simple as seeing if the salt is dry and, if it is, adding more water. Should it need more salt you can buy a 50 lb bag for $5 – $8.
Because the brine solution needs to be checked and cleared, water softening systems need to be monitored. Today, these systems are either mechanical or electric, referring to the control valve. In mechanical systems a skipper wheel is used to flush the mineral tank and regenerate the brine tank. Electric systems monitor the number of gallons used so that it regenerates only when it needs to. Most systems today are electric because it usually the more efficient choice.
Also on the market to combat hard water are magnetic water softening systems. These work by suspending the calcium in water with magnets and allowing this calcium-free water to continue through. Although popular in industrial projects, they are not common in residences. This is because it requires strong magnetic fields not practical for home use. Some electro-magnetic devices are also available although reportedly only effective on very hard water.
Salt-free water conditioners can also take care of some of the problems affiliated with hard water. Through Template Assisted Crystallization (TAC), calcium and magnesium are converted into crystals. These crystals won’t bind on surfaces, but they are still present in the water. It is important to note that this is a conditioning system, not a true softening regimen. All the minerals remain in the water but, through crystallization, don’t leave limescale and don’t impeded soaps from working.
Especially since finding GenX in regional drinking water, water softening and treatment systems help reassure us that the water we drink is safe. Whether on a well or not, it is important to be mindful of the water in our homes. This is an incomplete list of all the options available to ensure the best water. What system works best depends on where you live, how you get your water, how hard that water is, and how vulnerable your family is to impurities are all factors to consider when shopping for a system of your own.