Hard water can be an issue no matter what part of the country you live and mostly affects homes on wells, but the water coming into your home from a public water system can also be considered hard water if it has a lot of iron or other heavy metals in it. The minerals in the water can cause problems with your home fixtures, pipes, and often the water does not taste good, but there is a solution.
The first thing you need is a water test that can determine what minerals are high in the water coming into your home. The most common mineral found in hard water is iron, and if the levels are high enough, the iron can be unhealthy for you to consume, and it can build up in pipes, causing blockages in the system over time.
Getting an independent water testing company to test the water for you is the best way to determine if a water softener installation is a good option for your home. The test will identify everything in the water, the levels of it, and can help the company doing your water softener installation determine what system is going to best clean up the water in your home.
The most common water softeners on the market use a system that includes two tanks installed in the water line where it comes into the house. The first tank is filled with resin beads that attract iron and other minerals in the water, causing them to bind with the beads and allowing the water to pass through clean.
The second tank is a salt tank used to clean the resin beads on a regular schedule. The tank will automatically flush a water and salt brine through the resin tank and then down the drain. The result is clean beads that are ready to continue attracting minerals. The salt tank will need to refilling occasionally but ask the water softener installation company how often you should add salt to the system when they install it for you.
Harder water will require more frequent flushing of the resin beads and use more salt as a result, but the system can be set to flush automatically, and the timing of that will be determined by the results of the water test that was done before the water softener installation. If you feel like it is not flushing often enough and you are still getting staining or a bad taste from the water, you may need to adjust the schedule, but it is best to consult the water softener installation contractor before you make any changes to the system.