They say water is life, but when hard water flows through your pipes, it has dangerous and costly consequences. For example, hard water makes you use more detergent, stains your sinks and plumbing fixtures, eats away your pipes and makes them wear out prematurely.
Fortunately, you can avoid all these problems by installing a water softener. In many homes, a water softener unit has become a necessity rather than a luxury. It is a step to ensure that you and your family are safe from the health and economic implications of hard water. So how do you install a water softener? Read on to find out.
Choose the right location
This is the first step in installing a water softener. The water softener unit should be in a strategic position that allows it to connect to the water supply system within the house. It is also important to know that softened water is harmful to plant life, so you should not connect the softener to the external hose connections.
Besides, the location should be conveniently next to the power outlet and have a drain for discharging the water. Test the level of hardness of the water before you install the softener. This can help you set the unit to appropriate working conditions and even to choose the right model.
Install the bypass valve
Start by installing the bypass valve on top of the softener unit. The bypass valve is a component of the unit, which allows you to close or open it. This is important, especially if you want to redirect the flow of water to other areas that don’t need the softener. The valve usually comes with the clips to secure it at the back of the unit.
Connect to the water supply
Connection to the water supply is usually in two ways: either through the flexible lines or by a hard pipe into the water system. I find the flexible system easier to install and remove. Simply cut the copper water line and fix the adapters on which you will screw the flex lines. You can solder or use push fittings. The flex lines should connect to the water supply then to the softener unit at the back.
Install the drain
A water softener unit should have a drainage system during the renewal cycle. You can use various drain options such as floor drain, standpipe, or a utility sink. Connect the drain tubing to the softener unit’s valve drain fitting. The overflow drainpipe should connect to the drain elbow located on the salt tank. Ensure that both pipes channel their water to the drain. Support the drain hoses to stay above the drain standpipe.
Add salt to the system
The final step is to add salt and switch on the system. Read the user’s manual to know the type of salt the manufacturer recommends and the quantities. When switching on the water system, use low pressure, as high pressure can easily damage fittings. Turn on the cold-water faucet before turning on the water supply.
Finally, yet importantly, revisit the manual to learn more about the water hardness level, regeneration cycle, and more.