The Difference Between Water Softeners and Drinking Water Systems

The Difference Between Water Softeners and Drinking Water Systems

If you have concerns about your drinking water or overall water quality, you may have considered some form of water treatment system. Unfortunately, the terminology can be a little confusing to the uninitiated and leave you wondering whether you need a water softener or a drinking water system. So, here we’ll explore the differences between these systems and devices to help you to make an informed decision.

The Drinking Water System Basics

The primary purpose of a drinking water system is to remove any funny odors or tastes and improve the aesthetic qualities of the water. They operate by forcing the water through filters to remove the source of the bad smell or taste. Any contaminants affecting the water aesthetics are trapped in the filter, so they can be flushed down the drain.

There are several reasons to install a drinking water system including that they are easy to use and cater to all types of budget. Even a basic and budget friendly option can create water that is odor free and tasteless. Unfortunately, this means that your water has virtually nothing in it apart from the water itself.

The Water Softener Basics

While many consider drinking water systems and water softeners to be very similar, there are actually some important differences. Water softeners are used to treat not only your drinking water, but your entire water supply. This protects your working water and any water using appliances, such as your washing machine, water heater or dishwasher. A water softener is designed to eliminate hard water minerals by replacing these with sodium ions. Hard water is a very common problem throughout the U.S, and there are a great many advantages to having softened water. Hard water creates white spots on dishes, soap scum residue on bathroom fixtures and increases soap use, due to a reaction with the shampoo, detergent or soap. The greatest advantage of having a water softener is that your water using appliances will be protected from scale accumulation. The hard water minerals can build up inside your appliances, compromising performance and efficiency. Over time, this accumulation can also compromise the lifespan of your appliance.

Which Option is Best For Your Home?

In simple terms, a drinking water system is purely to filter your drinking water, while a water softener can tackle underlying issues throughout your home. In some cases, these systems can complement each other to improve the taste and odor of your drinking water and deal with hard water issues. The best way to determine the right option for your home is to have your water supply tested. The characteristics of your water will vary according to your geographical area, local infrastructure, and home plumbing, so it is essential that your water quality is assessed to choose the right option.

A professional water treatment specialist can not only test your water, but guide you through the appropriate treatment options. Ensure you consult a fully WQA certified technician for the assurance of products that meet or possibly exceed the industry standards.

By Mark Williams (NicMar President Mark Williams holds degrees in Applied Science and Industrial Thermodynamics, along with Agricultural Mechanization and Systems Engineering from Ohio State University.  He also holds the highest possible industry ranking, being WQA (Water Quality Association) LEVEL 6 Certified.

Print Friendly
Nicmar Water
999 Baltimore Road York SpringsPA17372 USA 
 • 800-542-8649

Water Solution Center

Educational Center