Occasionally some common questions come up when we use a water softener or want to buy it. Now a day we are very conscious of our health. It’s important to know more about softened water. You may have lots of questions about drinking softened water. Don’t worry, I’m with you and this article will answer your questions.
What is softened water?
Softened water is water after removing calcium, magnesium and certain other metal cations. When our home water contains more than 60mg/L hard water minerals, we face many problems. These minerals lead to build up limescale and decrease the water flow and lifespan of the plumbing pipe. It also decreases the lifetime of many other home appliances. So, we need to remove metal ions from water. After removing these metal ions we get softened water for drinking.
What changes in softened water?
Hard water contains a high range of dissolved metal ions. Generally, we use ion exchange method to remove water hardness. In this method, we used sodium or occasionally potassium salt. After the water is softened, metal ions like calcium ions and magnesium ions are replaced by sodium ions.
I have a low sodium diet. Is drinking softened water safe for me?
Water hardness is one of the most common problems in different states in the US. To solve these problem people use a traditional water softener. These water softeners use sodium or potassium salt to remove water hardness and ions of these salt replaced with hard minerals. As a result, sodium or potassium ions contain in soft water. If you have a low sodium diet, then you must need to know how much salt is added to water during softening.
Actually, it depends on the hardness level of your water. Average 46mg/L water is added to your water if it removes 100mg/L calcium carbonate in a day. Naturally, soft water contains 10-50 ppm sodium, which is considered safe to drink. If you think it is much, then use alternative salt like potassium for your water softener. You can also use a water conditioner or salt free water softener for your home.
Does water softener remove fluoride?
Fluoride is an essential element for the tooth and internal bones of our body. It strengthens our tooth enamel and prevents cavities. However, a high concentration of fluoride in drinking water can create different problems. A study of the National Institute of Health, 2006 found that there is a connection between fluoridated water and bone cancer. But a review in 2011 and a study in 2016 of the same institute didn’t find any relation between the two.
However, traditional water softener doesn’t remove fluoride from water. Because water softeners exchange only positively charged ions like calcium and magnesium ions. Fluoride is negatively charged and water softener doesn’t remove it.
Can I use potassium salt for water softener?
Potassium is an alternative salt and you can use it for softening your water. It works in the same way that traditional sodium chloride salt does. The hard water minerals replaced by potassium ions instead of sodium ions. If you deal with the conscious communities, they will encourage you to use potassium alternatives to sodium chloride. But it’s a little bit expensive.
Potassium chloride is a healthy mineral for both animals and plants. But our body can’t produce this useful mineral. So we need to intake it from our diet. If we use potassium salt to soften our drinking water, we can get 11% of potassium of our daily need. Using potassium chloride in water softener is environmentally friendly and it has less negative impact on environment.
See our review and buying guide to know more-
Is softened water safe for baby?
If the concentration of sodium in softened water is more than 200mg/L then you should not mix it with your baby food. You can use alternative salt like potassium or salt-free water softener for your home.
Can I cook with softened water?
Yes, you can use softened water for cooking. Cooking with softened water is much better than hard water. Let’s see-
- Cooking with soft water will improve the taste of your food.
- Hard water lengthens the period of cooking. By using soft water you can get rid of it.
- Softened water will taste your drinks significantly better.
See our article “soft vs hard water“…..
Finally, drinking softened water is not harmful to us. It has some disadvantages but not unhealthy. Softened water can make your life easier and happier. Drinking softened water is totally safe for you and your family.