Top 10 Best Water softeners 2018

Even if hard water is not harmful and does not affect health matter, it causes many problems such as dries skin and hair, complicate soap, staining and clogging home appliances. Hard water creates stains, clogs and scales build up in home appliances there reducing the efficiency. Therefore, it is important to treat hard water by installing water softener so as to reduce the negative impact it causes on our home. In this article, we will provide an unbiased review of Top 10 Best Water softeners 2018.

Top 10 Best Water softeners 2018

Comparison table of Top 10 Best Water softeners 2018

Product nametypecapacity price
Iron Pro 48K salt based water softener22,000 gallonscheck latest price at Amazon
Fleck 5600SXT 48,000 Water Softener salt based water softeners48,000 gallonscheck latest price at Amazon
Aquios FS-220 Salt-Free Water Softener salt-free water softeners40,000 gallonscheck the latest price at Amazon
Eddy Electronic Water Descaler magnetic salt-free water softenersN/Acheck the latest price at Amazon
Aquasana 10-Yearsalt-free water softener1,000,000 gallonscheck the latest price at Amazon
Nuvo H20 DPHB Water Softener Systemsalt-free water softener50,000 gallonscheck the latest price at Amazon

Water softeners are systems or gadgets that are used in our home to remove impurities such as calcium and magnesium that make water hard. If your area has hard water, the only solution is to install water softeners.

Don’t confuse between water filters and purifiers with water softeners. Water filter and purifiers remove contaminants in the water but do not reduce the hardness of water which softeners do.

What is hard water?

Hard water is raw water which contains minerals like calcium, magnesium, and ions which makes water hard. The minerals can be picked from the soil or ground rocks. Hard water is not harmful to human being and does not affect health matter, but it causes many problems in our lives.

Effects of hard water

  • Hard water makes your skin become dry and cause irritation. It also causes hair loss after bathing with it.
  • It causes spots on the glassware and other utensils
  • If hard water runs through the pipe for a very long time lime scale and matters build up in the pipe eventually causing the pipe to block and slow water flow.
  • Home appliances such as dishwashers, water heater, washing machines, and kettles are affected by hard water. When lime scale and matters build up in the appliances makes it fail to operate, it reduces lifespan and becomes expensive to repair.
  • If clothes are washed using hard water, they become hard and scratchy and eventually looks old and feeling crispy
  • Hard water affects sinks. The reaction between soap and hard water form scum stain on the sink and shower

All those effects of hard water make a good reason why we need water softeners in our house.

How do you know that your water is hard and need a water softener?

There is a straightforward test you can do at home although they are not accurate they will give you an idea whether your water is hard or soft.

Tests to do at home:

When bathing, your water should form a good foam, or you find milk curd on your surface that signs the water is salty.

Another test

Fill the bottle half way with water

Add few drops of liquid soap

Shake for few seconds

If your water didn’t form the foam that indicates is hard water.

The accurate test is to use water hardness kit.

How does a water softener work?

A water softener has two tanks. One tank which has polystyrene beads/ zeolite or resin beads and the other tanks hold salt or sodium and liquid brine/ salt water. Polystyrene beads are negatively charged beads.

Hard water that is positively charged passes through the tank containing polystyrene beads. The positively charged molecules are attracted to beads which are negatively charged and stick firmly to the beads providing soft water safe for drinking.

The liquid brine is passed through polystyrene beads to remove hard water minerals that have stick firmly. The process of when polystyrene beads need to be rinsed the minerals they have picked from hard water is called Regeneration

Water softeners replace the presence of the minerals in hard water with sodium using a process called ion exchange.

What to consider before buying water softeners

  • The hardness of your water

The hardness is measured in grains per gallons. If you check and find your waters has:

3 grains –slightly hard

3-7 grains- moderately hard

7-10 grains- hard

10-15 grains- very hard

Above 15 – extremely hard

  • Average household water consumption

The average amount of water a person consumes per day is between 70 and 110. If you have five people in your house per day, you consume 80X5=400 gallon per day, and after a week you drink 400X7=2800 gallons per week

  • Maintenance

Like any other device water softeners require regular maintenance. A salt based water softener needs a regular addition of salt and power needed for regeneration. So they will be electricity bill to be paid in salt-based water softeners.

A free salt water softener has a filter which requires being replaced on a regular basis.

  • The capacity of water softener

The capacity of water depends on with the amount of water you consume. If you consume a large amount of water, you need a softener that has big size. Most water softeners have a size range between 15,000 to 100,000 GPG.

If you consume a lot of water, you need water softener that has a large capacity to reduce the cost of regeneration.

Types of water softeners

They are two types of water softener Salt-based water softeners and soft free water softeners.

Salt-based water softeners

This kind of water softeners is meant to be used in extremely or very hard water. The water softeners replace hard water ions with soft water ions. Soft water ions used is sodium (salt) ions. You need a saltwater tank or brine solution tank which needs to be added more often for the process to work. The brine solution is required to remove hard minerals that are stuck in the polystyrene beads.

A salt-based water softener is not recommended due to some health issues; there are traces of salt that are left in the softened water. So they can cause a health risk to people who are having a problem with kidney or heart-related diseases.

However, you can still use the system by using soft ions such as potassium which is not harmful to our bodies, and it is nutrients required to keep our body health. During regeneration, you can use hydrogen or hydrochloric acid which is not- toxic cleaning agent if used the right amount. Both hydrogen and potassium are eco- friendly.

You can also decide to leave individual taps with hard water for cooking and drinking.

A salt-based water softener requires regeneration regularly, so you are required to add softening materials which are expensive.

Salt-free water softeners

The process of water softening does not include removing hard water minerals. No salt is used if you want to remove hard water minerals you can incorporate other methods recommended by the proprietor.

Salt-free water softeners remove scales and matter build up in the pipe. When hard water passes through a pipe scales and matters build up they can cause the pipe to clog or blockage. The softeners are not meant to remove hard water minerals but to remove scales and matter created by the hardness of water.

This type of water softeners is useful if your water has a hardness of over 8GPG.

Salt-free devices that are used to remove scales and matter are:

Magnetic– The magnet is placed around water pipes which alter water structure. The process does not offer a permanent solution to your water hardness. The Hardness in water is paralyzed for about 48 hours, and after that, it returns to its hardness form.

Electronic– Electronic pulses are sent to disrupt any suspended hard water mineral and change the chemical which causes scaling and building up of matter.

Chelation– It uses citrus based agents. Their molecules will combine with hard water minerals and prevent scales and matter form in your pipe and showers.


Top 10 Best Water softener reviews 2017

Top 10 Best Water softeners 2018

Fleck Structural 48k-56sxt Iron Pro Combination Water Softener & Iron Filter with Fleck 5600SXT Digital Metered Valve

whole house Water softeners

Check the latest price on Amazon

If you want a softener and iron filter look no further. Iron Pro 48k is a combination of water softener and iron filter. It removes hardness of water, and at the same time, it filters iron up to 6-8 ppm. It also removes sediment, rust, sand, ferrous iron and manganese up to 6 ppm.

It uses Meter based regeneration process. So it is a salt based water softeners.

Installation of iron pro 48k requires some basic plumbing skills which take basic plumbing skills.

The system has a capacity of 48,000 grains which best suits the home with 2-5 people and 2-3 baths

WaterBoss Water Softener – 22,000 Grain Capacity, Model# 700

This system has a capacity of 22,000 grain and best suits for residential use.

It is also a filter which removes silt and sediment.

The battery is required to operate and is not included in the package you buy it separately.


Type- salt-based water softener

Capacity- 22,000 gallons

It best fits a home of four

Fleck 5600SXT 48,000  Water Softener 

Water Softener with iron filter

The system is best to remove hardness in water. It also clears small amount of iron called ferrous iron

Fleck is electronic residential water softener which uses Meter based regeneration process.

The fleck water softener is a whole house system which has a capacity of 48,000 grains that makes it suit a home of 3-6 people with around three bathrooms.

The product has a lifetime warranty and reliable service support.

What we didn’t like of Fleck 5600SXT it’s not suitable for the small household since its bulky and its size is large you need big enough space.


Type- the system is salt-based water softeners

Capacity- 48,000 grains

It is best suited for the home of 3-6 people.

Check the latest price on Amazon

Other models of Fleck salt-based water softeners that are in the market

Fleck 5600SXT Metered Water Softener, 64,000 Grain Capacity with By-pass Valve –where to buy

Fleck 7000 SXT Whole House Water Softener 80,000 Grains- for a large home and light commercial use- where to buy

Aquios FS-220 Salt-Free Water Softener 

salt free Water softeners

It is a salt-free whole house water softener and at the same time is a water filter. It removes contaminants such as sediments, silt, and chlorine

The system requires no maintenance and electricity to operate.

Aquios FS 220 has a warranty of 20 years, a capacity of 40,000 gallons and cartridge which has six-month cartridge life


Type- salt-free water softeners

Capacity – 40,000 gallons

Check the latest price on Amazon

Eddy Electronic Water Descaler 

electronic water descaler

This system removes limescale that forms on the surface of the sink, home appliances, faucet, and taps.

Eddy produces electro- magnetic waves which are applied to two coils. The coils are placed all around incoming water supply.

This system does not alter TDS level of water so the necessary healthy minerals present in water (such as calcium) that the body need is retained.

The system has a capacity and is best suited for home and businesses use.

It is easier to install requires no plumbing skills


Type- the system is magnetic salt-free water softeners

It best suits small household where the hard water level is low to medium

Check the latest price on Amazon

Aquasana 10-Year, 1,000,000 Gallon Salt-Free Softener 

Whole House Water Filter with Salt-Free Softener

The system can be used as a water filter and water softener. It is a whole house water filter which removes chlorine, rust, silt, pesticides, herbicides, sediments, industrial solvents and soluble metal. It is also salt-free softener which is proven to reduce scale on your tap, shower heads, and glassware.

This system has a capacity of 1,000,000 gallons.

Aquasana does not require electricity to operate and naturally soften your water using innovative Nucleation Assisted Crystallization softening technology. The technology naturally softens your water without adding additives like sodium and retains essential healthy minerals in the water.


Type- salt-free water softener

Capacity- 1,000,000 gallons

Check the latest price on Amazon

Nuvo H20 DPHB  Water Softener System

Water softener

Check the latest price on Amazon

The system has a capacity of 50,000 gallons which best suits an average of two people.

It uses salt-free replacement cartridges that remove hard water scales and need to be replaced once or twice per year

Nuvo H20 is not suitable for areas where water hardness is above 10GPG


Type- It is a salt-free water softener

Capacity- it has a capacity of 50,000 gallons

It best suits home of two people

Commonly asked questions

Water softeners cost

The cost of water softeners depends on size and functionality. Before purchasing you should consider average water consumption in your home. For instance, if you buy a small water softener than the required size you will be doing regeneration more often than usual, and you will pay more for electricity consumed during regeneration.

Consider buying a bigger size or the required size even though purchase price will be high, but you will save more money.

Terms used in water softener process

Regeneration– During the process of water softening there are softener resin beads which attract hard water minerals or hard water ions they stick to the beads. The resin bead needs to be flushed or cleaned. The process of cleaning or flushing out hard water ions or minerals from the resin beads is called Regeneration.

There are three types of regeneration

Meter regeneration- the water softener will regenerate based on water usage and is most commonly used.

Timer regeneration

Manual regeneration

Scale- When hard water passes through pipe more often, the hard water minerals built up or gather particular place in the pipe. That is what called scale.

Portable vs. standard

There are water softeners that are portable, and other is standard. Portable water softeners are best suited for outdoors, camping or traveling. Standard water softeners are installed in the house in your existing water system

Portable water softeners are used to soften less amount of water per day.

If you live in areas with hard water the best way is to treat your water is installing a water softener. Make sure when buying you consider the tip we have outlined in this article and I am sure you will find best water softener you need to soften your water. We hope that our Top 10 Best Water softeners 2018 review was very helpful and we have provided you with the right information to guide when purchasing Water softeners brand.

Which water softeners are you using in your house? Please share with us in the comment section and the best brand that you would recommend.

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