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How Often Should I Add Salt to My Water Softener?

Tips from the Experts

For your water softener to function correctly, it’s essential to keep up with some routine steps for maintenance. Most notably, keeping your brine tank filled to the proper salt level is important. Homeowners often wonder: how often should I add salt to my water softener?

There are many factors to consider when adding salt to your water softener. These factors include the type of water softener, size of the brine tank, and water hardness level and usage. Together, they determine how often you’ll need to replenish your water softener’s salt supply. 

If you’re interested in water softener installation in Portage County, OH, Quality Water Systems provides premier home water softening system installation and services. We’re here to answer any questions, including the frequency of adding salt to your water softener.

Determining How Often to Add Salt

You should add a bag of salt every month to your water softener. We recommend checking your salt tank on the first of each month to monitor your salt usage and adjust as needed. However, there are more factors to think about when adding salt to your water softener. 

Without sufficient salt to form a brine solution and recharge the water-softening media, your system becomes less effective over time. When your tank runs out of salt, it will attempt to recharge the media with plain water instead. 

Consequently, hardness minerals start creeping back into the water you use in your home. This possible situation is why it’s essential to know when to add more salt to your water softener. Here are a few factors you should keep in mind. 

Check Inside the Tank

First, locate the tank where you add the sodium chloride. Next, you can check the salt level inside your water softener by lifting the brine tank cover and looking inside. 

If the brine tank’s salt level is less than half-full and looks dry, add salt until it’s half-full. Moreover, if the water level is above the salt and the salt appears wet, we recommend adding salt to your water softener’s tank until it’s half full. 

If your softener runs out of salt, it won’t be able to complete its regeneration cycle. You want to avoid this situation as higher mineral content in your water affects everything from your plumbing to your hair and skin. When a water softener can generate more frequently, it reduces the mineral contents of your water.

Consider Your Water Softener’s Age

Your water softener’s age has a direct impact on its salt usage. A water softener over a decade old uses more salt than a brand-new and more efficient softener. Newer models also operate on a demand-initiated cycle and regenerate only when you need them, as opposed to a set schedule. 

The latest systems also include low salt indicators or a remote monitoring alert. These let you know when you’re running low on salt, making water salt maintenance easier. 

Since newer models use salt more efficiently, you typically only need to add salt every 6-8 weeks. However, you should still check monthly to ensure everything is running smoothly.

Avoid Bridging

You should closely inspect your water softener to ensure salt bridges haven’t formed. A salt bridge can form in your tank and prevent your system from getting all the salt required. 

Your tank may have a salt bridge when the salt level in your tank hasn’t gone down after months of use, and you notice that you still have soft water. To avoid bridging, install your water softener in a low-humidity area when possible. 

Use a high-quality type of salt, and keep your brine tank no more than half-full with salt. Potassium chloride is a good option for people with health concerns about salt. Bridging is more common with rock salt and solar salt, so pellets are the best option for most homeowners. 

Let Quality Water Systems Install Your Water Softener Today!

Quality Water Systems has trained service technicians with years of experience and knowledge in the industry. We custom-build our water treatment systems for each home and have satisfied our customers for almost 50 years. 

Contact us today to set up an appointment for water softener installation. Whether you need water treatment repair or well pump replacement in Carroll County, OH, our skilled technicians will do the job!

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