Water Expert Andy Ball: Water Softner


Make text smaller Make text larger



Photos



  • Andy Ball



What is a water softener?


A water softener reduces the dissolved calcium, magnesium, and to some degree manganese and ferrous iron ion concentration in hard water.

These “hardness ions” cause three major kinds of undesired effects. Most visibly, metal ions react with soaps and calcium-sensitive detergents, hindering their ability to lather and forming a precipitate—the familiar “bathtub ring”. Presence of “hardness ions” also inhibits the cleaning effect of detergent formulations.

Second, calcium and magnesium carbonates tend to precipitate out as hard deposits to the surfaces of pipes and heat exchanger surfaces. This is principally caused by thermal decomposition of bi-carbonate ions but also happens to some extent even in the absence of such ions. The resulting build-up of scale can restrict water flow in pipes. In boilers, the deposits act as an insulation that impairs the flow of heat into water, reducing the heating efficiency and allowing the metal boiler components to overheat. In a pressurized system, this can lead to failure of the boiler.[1]

Third, the presence of ions in an electrolyte, in this case, hard water, can also lead to galvanic corrosion, in which one metal will preferentially corrode when in contact with another type of metal, when both are in contact with an electrolyte. However the sodium (or Potassium) ions released during conventional water softening are much more electrolytically active than the Calcium or Magnesium ions that they replace and galvanic corrosion would be expected to be substantially increased by water softening and not decreased. Similarly if any lead plumbing is in use, softened water is likely to be substantially more plumbo-solvent than hard water.

Andy Ball
862-354-7698




Make text smaller Make text larger

Comments

Pool Rules



MUST READ NEWS

Watercolor workshops at historical society
— In conjunction with its summer arts exhibit, Sparta Historical Society presents its community program with guest curator and local...
Read more »
Image

Billy Hector to perform in Sparta
— On Friday night July 20 the Sparta Summer Concert Series keeps chugging along with The Billy Hector Blues Band. Billy himself has...
Read more »
Image

Sparta High School honor rolls
Principal's Scholar Honor Roll
Grade 9
Amineh Al-Aydi, Budoor Al-Aydi, Vincent Apostolico, Jenna Bargfrede, Ula Bitinaitis, Jenna Blandina, Elizabeth Botta, Kristen...

Read more »

Sparta police blotter
Road rage results in warrant arrest
On July 6 at approximately 11:45 pm, P.O. Erick Finley observed two vehicles racing north on Rt. 15. He was able to stop one of the...

Read more »
Image

VIDEOS



Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required
Community Newspapers


MOST COMMENTED



Find more about Weather in Sparta, NJ