10 Best Water Softener Systems (Buying Guide)

 

Water Softener Systems are the devices that remove hardness causing minerals from the water.  It is a system that is used to remove the hardness causing minerals from the water making it soft water. They are designed to remove or exchange positively charged ions from water. These both are usually known as hardness-causing minerals.

The water softeners are also capable of removing iron(up to 5mg/L) from hard water. They are available in different models based upon various factors such as capacity, the technology they use, etc.

Best Water Softener Systems

1. FLECK 5600 SXT Metered 48k Grains Water Softener 

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FLECK 5600 SXT Metered 48k Grains Water Softener


FLECK 5600 SXT Metered 48k Grains Water Softener

Our Verdict

The best thing about this product is that it is suitable for a small family of 2-3 members and it is easy to use. Also, it can handle low to medium-level hard water easily.

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PROS
  • Smart digital control based on water usage resulting in less water wastage
  • Resin is pre-loaded in the tank by the company
  • Easy to install
  • Comes with a 5-year valve warranty and a 10-year tank warranty
  • Has a 48000-grain capacity
  • Automatic regeneration based on your requirements
CONS
  • Lacks drainage tube
  • Wastes more water during regeneration as compare to salt-free systems
  • Requires timely maintenance


FLECK SYSTEMS is a company owned by US WATER SYSTEMS. Mark Timmons and Patrica Timmons are the main building blocks of this company who led the foundation of this company.

FLECK 5600 water softener system comes with a classic design and timeless operation. It is a salt-based water softener system that will use an exchange ion process to remove hard water by exchanging calcium and magnesium with sodium and potassium ions. The system comes with a single mineral tank and a brine tank. 

The sodium or potassium present in the mineral tank help in the ion exchange process. As water flows through it calcium and magnesium get exchanged making the water soft. It comes with a metered regeneration system that can be controlled using a digital system based on your daily, weekly, or monthly requirements.

It comes with a grain capacity of 48000 gallons. The system is suitable for a family of 2-3 members and can easily treat low to medium levels of hard water. The system comes up with a 5-year valve warranty and a 10-year tank quantity which attracts the customers towards buying this water system. 

2. SPRINGWELL Future Soft Salt-Free Water Softener

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SPRINGWELL Future Soft Salt-Free Water Softener


SPRINGWELL Future Soft Salt-Free Water Softener

Our Verdict

It’s a salt-free water softener that requires low maintenance cost and unlike other water softeners, it has ActivFlo technology to maintain water pressure and also has a 6 months money back guarantee.

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PROS
  • Easy to install
  • 6 months money-back guarantee if the customer is not satisfied with the product
  • Can be controlled via a Bluetooth connection to the phone
  • Requires less maintenance
  • Saves money as no need to top up the salt
CONS
  • Does not make the water soft
  • Heavy Tank
  • Resin needs to be changed from time to time, so a bit of maintenance is required


 

Springwell water is a leading company based in the US in Central Florida and has been serving its customers with efficient and a wide range of water softeners for the last 20 years. 

This system works on a Template Assisted Crystallisation process. In this process, the hardness causing water minerals are converted into hardness crystals. This process makes the water slightly soft but prevents it from harming the appliances, skin, utensils, etc. The most important feature about this system is that it comes with a lifetime warranty on all parts and tanks offered by the manufacturer only. 

Another positive point of this device is that there is not much water wastage and you don’t need to worry about the top-up of salt in the tank as it is a salt-free based system. It gives complete control to the customer and the customer can make all the settings from his/her phone by connecting via Bluetooth. 

The system provides an average flow rate of 12 GPM. It is certified by NSF based on different parameters and can prevent scale build-up to a large extent. It also has an ActivFlo water technology that keeps the water pressure maintained.

3. FLECK IRON Pro 2 Water Softener 

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FLECK IRON Pro 2 Water Softener


FLECK IRON Pro 2 Water Softener

Our Verdict

The system is best for one who wants pure water as it not only makes the water soft but removes dust, sand, industrial solvents, and iron too making the water pure and filtered.

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PROS
  • Can deal with extremely hard water
  • Resin can work up to 5 years before changing it
  • Comes with a 5-year valve warranty and a 10-year tank warranty
  • Comes with a fully digital control system
  • Auto-regeneration system
  • Grain Capacity of 80000
CONS
  • A bit costly as compared to other water softeners
  • Might need a professional plumber for installation


FLECK SYSTEMS is a company owned by US WATER SYSTEMS.. Mark Timmons and Patrica Timmons are the main building blocks of this company who led the foundation of this company.       

FLECK IRON PRO 2 is an incredible product that comes with a 2 in 1 technology. It is a salt-based water softener system. The Fleck Iron Pro 2 water softener not only makes the water soft but also makes sure that there is not even a single stain or scale on appliances. 

The system not only removes magnesium, calcium, and iron but also removes very small dust, sand particles. It has the power to remove water hardness even up to 75gpg. This system comes with brine and a mineral tank. Minerals like calcium, magnesium are exchanged with sodium while passing through these tanks and the removal of iron from water also takes place during this process only.

The system comes with a 5-year valve warranty and a 10-year tank warranty offered by the manufacturer. Additionally, the resin can work up to 5 years before changing it. Fleck Iron Pro 2 water softener comes with full digital control and it also offers a customizable auto regeneration system that can be controlled by a digital system using the LCD screen provided in the device.

4. AQUASANA RHINO: SALT-FREE Water Filter and Softener

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AQUASANA RHINO: SALT-FREE Water Filter and Softener


AQUASANA RHINO: SALT-FREE Water Filter and Softener

Our Verdict

This system comes with a huge capacity which is suitable for a family of 5-6 members and also has a dual technology of water softening and filtration.

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PROS
  • Option to add UV filters
  • 1000000 Gallons Capacity for the whole house
  • Does Not remove essential minerals from water
  • Superior 10-year warranty by the manufacturer
CONS
  • Expensive as compared to other softeners
  • Not much easy to install requires professional plumbers
  • Not totally makes the water soft


Aquasana, a prominent water filter, and water softener manufacturing company were founded in 1998. The company offers a wide range of whole house water filter systems, water softeners, UV systems, etc. 

Aquasana Rhino is an ideal whole house water filter system that is a need of every house. It comes with a 2 in 1 technology which can remove the hardness up to a large extent and in addition to that it can filter your water and make it 97% clean water. The system has a capacity of 1000000 gallons and an average rate flow of 7GPM.

Aquasana Rhino works on a discrete method which is known as Scale Control Media(SCM) in which it changes the structure of hardness causing minerals and converts them into crystals that don’t get stuck to any surface, though it doesn’t completely make the water soft but makes it stain-free and less harming. Moreover, not only this it comes with a filter which will filter all dust and sediments present in the water making it fit for a drink.

The system comes with a 10-year warranty offered by the manufacturer. On the whole, it is beneficial for whole house water filtering and softening with 2 in 1 technology and having a good capacity. Also, it doesn’t add any salt to the water so no need to worry about the top-up of salt and water wastage.

5. PELICAN ADVANTAGE SERIES SALT Water Softener

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PELICAN ADVANTAGE SERIES SALT Water Softener


PELICAN ADVANTAGE SERIES SALT Water Softener

Our Verdict

The system is a salt based water softener and can be operated in 3 different modes. It is’ available in 2 different models So, the customer can choose it depending on his/ her daily water consumption.

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PROS
  • A high flow rate of 12 GPM
  • Double backwashing system
  • 7-year electronic head warranty and 12-year tank warranty offered by the manufacturer
  • Comes in 2 variants
  • 3 modes of operation for regeneration 
  • Digital Control
  • 90 Day money-back guarantee
CONS
  • Lacks in customer service
  • Not for extremely hard water


Pentair- Pelican water was founded in the year 2007 and has been dealing in a wide range of whole house water filtration, salt-free water softener, salt-based water softener, water filters, shower filter systems for the last 13 years. 

It is a salt-based water softener system that comes with a brine tank along with float and drain pipes. The working of this Pelican advantage series saltwater softener depends on the 3 most important steps: Backwashing phase, regeneration phase, and rinse phase. The product has 2 variants based on capacity: PS48( for 1-3 bathrooms) and PS80(for 4-6 bathrooms).

First, the dirt is removed from the mineral tank, then the mineral tank is recharged with sodium from the brine tank and when water is passed through the mineral tank calcium and magnesium minerals are displaced by sodium which is flushed by the brine tank and then the mineral tank is rinsed with fresh water which is soft and free from calcium and magnesium. 

The system comes with a digital control system and the regeneration cycle is controlled by this digital system only. It has 3 modes of operation for regeneration which can be controlled digitally. It has a good flow rate of 12 GPM and 18 GPM, 48000 and 80000-grain capacity respectively. The device comes with a 12-year manufacturer warranty of bypass valve, non-electric head, and tanks. It also has a limited 7-year warranty of electric head.

6. FS1500 Whole House Filter and Softener

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FS1500 Whole House Filter and Softener


FS1500 Whole House Filter and Softener

Our Verdict

It’s a salt-free water softener with a capacity of 1000000 gallons which is suitable for a large family. The system has a dual technology for water filtration and softening.

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PROS
  • Dual system: filtration and water softener
  • Salt-free water softening system
  • The capacity of 1000000 gallons and 12 GPM flow rate
  • Free shipping provided by the manufacturer
  • Easy installation
  • Premium carbon filter
  • Less water wastage and requires no electricity
CONS
  • Not so cheap
  • Needs a change of pre-filter every 6-8 months


FilterSmart Water Systems was founded in April 2013 by brothers, Colin and Dan. The company deals with whole house water filters and salt-free water softener systems. FS1500 is a dual system comprising a whole house filter and a water softening system.

FS1500 comes with a carbon filter technology that helps in removing chlorine, chloride, pesticides, industrial pollutants, etc. making the water clean and fit for use. Another advantage of buying this combo is that it also has a salt-free water softener which removes the hardness from water and provides slightly soft water with no extra salt added.

The salt-free water softening system works on a media in which atomic templates are there which act as a catalyst and reduce the ability of hardness causing minerals to form big molecules, it converts big molecules of calcium and magnesium into crystals that don’t stick and harm the surfaces making it slightly soft. This technology of using these atomic templates is known as template-assisted crystallization (TAC).

The product comes with a lifetime warranty of tanks and valve heads offered by the manufacturer. FS1500 also comes with a 90-day money-back guarantee. It has a vast capacity of 1000000 gallons and a high flow rate of 12 GPM. The carbon that is used in the process of filtration is made up of premium Jacobi coconut shells activated carbon.

7. CRYSTAL Quest Whole House Water Softener

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CRYSTAL Quest Whole House Water Softener


CRYSTAL Quest Whole House Water Softener

Our Verdict

The system comes in 3 variants, so the customer can choose what’s the most suitable depending on their usage and area available. It also has an LCD, control system which is easy to use.

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PROS
  • Works on 3 different stages
  • 10-year resin and brine tank warranty, 5 years Fleck 5600 warranty
  • NSF Certified
  • Automatic regeneration of salt for ion exchange
  • 3 different variants depending on the tank and flow rate
  • 30 Day money-back guarantee
CONS
  • Needs a professional plumber for its installation


FilterWater was founded in 2003 and is a leading manufacturer of salt-based, salt-free water softeners.

FilterWater whole house water softener comes in 3 different sizes based on tank height and flow rate: 9GPM for 1 cubic. ft tank, 11 GPM for 1.5 cubic ft tank, and 13 GPM for 2 cubic ft tank. It comes with a white fiberglass tank and has a three-stage filtration process. As the water flows through the sediment cartridge the dirt, silt, sand, and sediments present in the water get removed. 

Then, ions are exchanged in mineral and brine tanks wherein calcium and magnesium ions are exchanged with sodium or potassium ions. Then finally there is a carbon cartridge that helps in the removal of VOCs, pesticides, and industrial chemicals making the water fit for use.

It has a Fleck 5600 backwash controller with an LED display which enables the customer to control the activities of regeneration draining of the trapped unwanted substances within the filter. The system has a 10-year warranty on resin and brine tank and a 5-year warranty of Fleck 5600.

8. NUVOH2O Manor Duo – Water Softener + Taste System

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NUVOH2O Manor Duo - Water Softener + Taste System


NUVOH2O Manor Duo – Water Softener + Taste System

Our Verdict

The system is capable of removing dust, sediments, etc. up to 95% and is based on dual technology. It has a good capacity which makes it an ideal choice for the customers.

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PROS
  • The capacity of 50,000 Gallons and a flow rate of 18 GPM
  • Salt-free water system: No wastage of water and salt
  • 5 Years warranty provided by the manufacturer
  • Removes sediments, dust, chlorine, etc. up to 95%
CONS
  • If the cartridge breaks, the color of the water changes to blue
  • Make the water slightly soft
  • Does Not remove iron from water


NUVOH2O was founded by Laird Washburn in 2009 and is based in the USA. The company deals in the manufacturing of salt-free, citric acid-based water softeners. The company offers different variants and combos of water softeners. 

NUVOH2O Manor Duo- Water Softener and taste system is a dual system that comes with a water softener and taste system to filter and improve the quality and taste of water. A manor water softener uses a distinctive technology through which it lowers down the pH of the water using a scientific method of chelation in which minerals like calcium, magnesium get treated with a chelating agent and it makes it soluble in water causing it to prevent from making the water hard.

The taste system uses a carbon filter which helps to remove sediments, dust, chlorine, and industrial solvents up to 95% and makes water purified, and also helps in improving its taste. The system has a flow rate of 18 GPM and also has a great capacity of 50,000 gallons. The system is certified by NSA and FDA and comes with a 5-year warranty provided by the manufacturer. 

9. iSpring ED2000 Whole House Electronic Water Softener

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 iSpring ED2000 Whole House Electronic Water Softener


iSpring ED2000 Whole House Electronic Water Softener

Our Verdict

The system is based on magnetic water softening technology which prevents water wastage and salt wasting. Also, it has a one year money back guarantee.

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PROS
  • Low maintenance cost
  • Can treat hardness up to 25 grains per gallon
  • Efficient for breaking down existing limescale buildup
  • No water wastage
  • Cheap as compared to other water softeners
  • Easy Installation
CONS
  • Make the water slightly soft
  • Can’t be used for extremely hard water



iSpring, a leading company for manufacturing electronic water softeners and conditioners. The company also deals with reverse osmosis filtration systems and is a leading and known brand for the same.

iSpring ED2000 is a magnetic water softener that helps to make water soft by preventing the use of additional salt and giving a positive advantage of low-cost maintenance. The product works on a scientific coil-based system.

The two thin wire coils are wrapped around the incoming pipes of the customer’s home and are connected to the water softener. As the system is plugged in, electromagnetic waves start forming which keep the hard minerals suspended in the water preventing the formation of limescale on pipes.

It also helps to break down the existing limescale build-up that’s there on appliances and pipes. The best part about this system is that it gives immediate results. The product comes with a 1-year money-back guarantee. It can treat hardness up to 25 grains per gallon.

10. Pelican NaturSoft Salt-Free Water Softener

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Pelican NaturSoft Salt-Free Water Softener


Pelican NaturSoft Salt-Free Water Softener

Our Verdict

This is one of the best water softners that gives you a long money back guarantee ensuring the product is perfect for you. The product is NSA Certified making it an ideal choice for you.

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PROS
  • Easy to install
  • 90 Days money-back guarantee
  • 12 years warranty on valves, non-electric heads, and tanks 
  • NSA certified
  • Comes in two variants
  • Low maintenance: requires an only change of pre-filters after every 6-9 months
  • No water wastage
CONS
  • Does Not remove hardness causing minerals
  • Make the water slightly soft


Pentair- Pelican water was founded in the year 2007 and has been dealing in a wide range of whole house water filtration, salt-free water softener, salt-based water softener, water filters, shower filter systems for the last 13 years.

Pelican NaturSoft is a salt-free water system that comes in two different models: NS3 and NS6 based on the capacity and flow rate. The system works on salt-free technology preventing the wastage of water as well as salt.

The only difference between the two models that is NS3 and NS6 is that NS3 provides a flow rate of 10 GPM(suitable for small families) whereas NS6 provides a flow rate of 15 GPM(suitable for large families). The system works on the crystallization process and converts the hardness causing ions into crystal form preventing the minerals from scaling up on pipes.

The company offers a 90-day money-back guarantee and also there is an exclusive 12-year warranty on tanks, valves, and non-electric heads provided by the manufacturer. Pelican NaturSoft is certified by NSA and gives scientifically proven results.

Buying Guide – Best Water Softener Systems

Do you know there are two types of water? Soft water and hard water. Usually, the water that comes to our homes is hard. Hard water contains dissolved particles of magnesium, iron, calcium, and several other particles.

hard vs soft water

 

Credit: HomeWater101(Youtube)

Side Effects of Hard Water 

  1. The first and the most concerning side effect of using hard water is that it makes your skin very itchy, this is due to the presence of excess sodium in water.
  2. Hard water has an alkaline pH and our skin is acidic so, when these both combine it makes our skin and hair dry.
  3. Hard water also fades the color of our clothes.
  4. Hard water causes corrosion and other pipe problems causing heavy damage to pipes.
  5. The white spots that are usually seen on utensils and dishes are caused by hard water only. 
  6. Hard water increases acne on the skin.
  7. Hard water can also cause rust and corrosion resulting in heavy damage to appliances and pipes.
  8. Soap and shampoos will not be as effective as they should be. Also, you’ll notice less foam and lather.

Now, to get rid of these problems and convert hard water to soft water there are devices known as water softener systems. A Water Softener System is a device that removes calcium, magnesium, and other particles and makes it soft water that consists of important minerals like sodium, potassium, etc. These water softener systems are available in different types.

Depending on the technology there are three main types of systems: Salt-free water softeners, Salt-based water softeners, Magnetic water softeners. The best of these all are salt-based water softening systems which exchange the unwanted minerals with necessary minerals.

Types of Water Softener Systems

1. Salt – Based Water Softeners

These are the best and the most efficient water softeners. Salt-based water softeners work on an ion exchange technology where heavy minerals like calcium, magnesium, etc are collected into resin within the water softener and get exchanged with sodium or potassium salt. They usually acquire more space than salt-free and magnetic water softeners.

2. Salt – Free Water Softeners

These water softeners don’t use any type of salt for water softening. These softeners use a technology known as Template Assisted Crystallisation(TAC) that breaks down the hardness causing minerals to crystal form which no longer gets stuck to the pipes and appliances causing the water to get slightly soft. These water usually have low maintenance as compared to salt-based water softeners as they require no addition of extra salt for regeneration.

3. Magnetic Water Softeners

These water softeners work on electric and magnetic technology to make water soft. They mostly come with 2 coils that get wrapped to the incoming pipes of the house and on the other end, they’re connected to the power outlet box. As the electricity is passed through them they produce electromagnetic waves which help to break down the scale-up and prevent the hard minerals to stick to pipes and other appliances. These types of softeners do not make the water soft but can bring a slight change.

Water Softeners Vs Water Conditioners

Water softeners are those devices that more effectively make the water soft but on the other hand, water conditioners descale the limescale build-up on the pipes and also breakdown the hardness causing minerals into crystals and make the water slightly soft. Salt-free water softeners are usually called water conditioners. The only difference between the two is water conditioners make the water slightly soft whereas water softeners make the water softer as compared to the water conditioners. 

Water Softeners Vs Water Conditioners

Now, let’s have a look on what are the factors you have to keep in mind while buying the best and suitable water softener:

  1. Available Area: Different water softeners require different spaces. Before choosing any water softener one must take care of the space where the system is to be installed. You can measure the space where you wish to install your water softener and then you can match the measurements according to that of the system provided by the manufacturer. 
  2. Capacity: Capacity is the most important aspect while choosing a water softener. You can take an approximate idea about your daily water consumption, multiply it with your water hardness level and then again multiply it with the number of days after which you want to have a regeneration cycle. This will provide you with an estimated grain value based on which you can choose which capacity model is the most suitable for you.
  3. Type Of technology: Depending on the hardness of water one can decide which technology to choose. The most efficient is a salt-based water softener if one wants the most accurate results and has extremely hard water. The other technologies also make the water soft but are not the best and suitable for extremely hard waters.
  4. Bypass valve: The main function of this valve is to control the flow of water flowing to the water softener. If you want to stop the water from getting into a water softener for some reason you can switch this valve off. Suppose your water softener is not working properly so to avoid the wastage of water and salt you can switch the bypass valve and prevent water from flowing into the water softener.
  5. Installation and maintenance cost: The installation and maintenance cost of the water softener varies from model to model. Usually, salt-based water softeners are more expensive as compared to other water softeners and they also require a bit of high maintenance as they require a timely salt top-up.
  6. Regeneration Cycle: Regeneration is the most important part of the water softening process if you’re choosing a salt-based water softener as the salt needs to get topped up as soon as it gets empty. The regeneration cycle can be controlled by the customers digitally,

Metered water softeners regenerate automatically once a particular amount of water has been passed through the water softener.

Timed water softeners regenerate after a particular time which can be controlled by the customer digitally. While setting the time one thing that a customer must keep in his mind is that setting up short intervals might lead to wastage of both salt and water.

Conclusion

It is best to choose the best water softener system according to your requirement. Most of the water softeners come with all the necessary functions, but if your pocket allows we would recommend you to buy any salt-based water softener along with a filtration system to get a good quality result. Though it might be a bit expensive and might require good, timely maintenance but it can provide you good quality soft water for years.

But before taking any final decision make sure you go through all the necessary factors and also have a close look at the pros and cons of the product that you’re planning to choose.

Jhon Lawrence
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