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Can I use my water ionizer with a water softener?

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A traditional water softener removes calcium and magnesium and replaces it on an ion by ion basis with sodium or potassium.

Although sodium and potassium are both alkaline minerals, and the water will test “purple” with pH reagent drops, water coming from a softener has all of the calcium and magnesium stripped away, therefore you are missing some essential alkaline minerals.

In addition, the ionization process naturally concentrates the minerals found in source water and can as much as double the concentration. For example if the levels of calcium and magnesium in the source water is 300 milligrams per liter (mg/l), then 300 mg/l of sodium or potassium will come out of the softener plus whatever level of sodium or potassium is in the water to start with.

Using an ionizer can as much as double the concentration resulting in 600 mg/l coming out of the ionizer top spout on alkaline level 4 setting. Those levels of sodium or potassium are relatively high (especially to those with high blood pressure who are sensitive to sodium) and once again the water has no beneficial calcium or magnesium in it.

Furthermore the sodium and potassium are actually chlorides and either sodium chloride or potassium chloride when ran through the ionization process can produce chlorine gases that are harmful and corrosive!

These added levels of sodium and potassium can harm your ionizer resulting in costly repairs and with these facts in mind IonWays does not recommend ionizing softened water. There are a few suggested solutions which can work for customers using an ionic exchange softener such as:

  1. Add a Reverse Osmosis system with re-mineralization to remove the harmful sodium and potassium and put the alkalizing calcium and magnesium back into your water. You can find our r.o. system for water ionizers by clicking here.
  3. You   can also bypass the water softener and run a dedicated line to the   ionizer. Since almost all of your hard water damages occur to hot water   appliances, washing machine, hot water heaters, etc., and ionizer need cold water to work you can have your water softener reconfigured to work only on the supply line to your hot water heater. This will prevent harm from coming to your ionizer as well as save you money by not having to work on the unnecessary cold water systems.